Public Not Lovin’ McDonalds New Ad Campaign

Public Not Lovin’ McDonalds New Ad Campaign

I can see the team at the ad agency, working on the new McDonald’s ad campaign. Huddled with their grande lattes, the creative team is desperately trying to figure out something they can talk about besides food.  “What’s trending right now? Somebody look at their Twitter feed.” The new guy pipes up, “Bullying!” Withering looks around the table. “What, we’re going to show Ronald McDonald on a school bus, punching the bully in the nose?” Silence. “You know, that’s not half bad. The bullying thing, I mean.” The world loves to vilify the mac-daddy of fast-food purveyors, and the company keeps serving up reasons to: #4 in unhealthiest fast food chains, according to Consumer Reports, strikes by employees whose wages are so low they can’t afford to eat there, and, for investors, lower sales and profits.  In a well-timed “60 Minutes” interview, McDonald’s CEO, Don Thompson, seemed unperturbed. “If you attack McDonald’s, you’ll get press. And so, you know, just about any and everyone will attack McDonald’s for something,” he said. I got this, says he. He also says that McDonald’s is willing to invest in their employees if the employees are willing to invest in the company. Ask employee Nick Williams if he can invest in McDonald’s. We’ll wait while you mop up the super-sized beverage you just snorted through your nose. Can advertising change the facts? Can it change public perception? McDonald’s thinks so. It will unveil its “Lovin’ Beats Hatin” campaign during the Super Bowl. And the public is already not lovin’ it. Check the Twitter hashtag #lovinbeatshatin. McDonald’s will spend $1 billion on advertising next year, which is evidently cheaper than improving its food or paying its employees a living wage. Maybe the new campaign will be so awwwww-inspiring folks will race from the television or YouTube and stampede through the golden arches for a 1,950-calorie meal* of a double cheeseburger, large fries with one ketchup packet, and a hot fudge sundae. We can’t wait for McDonalds new ad campaign. *McDonald’s calorie counts from independent source If you found this post useful, share it your audience. Kim Phillips is a marketer, artist and teacher who helps companies of all sizes reach their audiences with creative branding, social media, websites, content management, email marketing, and direct mail. She is based in Nashville, Tennessee. Contact Me | Facebook | Twitter @LucidKim | LinkedIn  | Google+     this post Lucid Marketing can help you make your marketing the best it can be. Call us today at 615.829.0772 or click here to send an email. Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Lucid Marketing, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back and the source of the republication clearly noted. Excerpts, commentary, and fair use applications should...

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At Urban Outfitters, who’s minding the store?

At Urban Outfitters, who’s minding the store?

The old saying that there’s no such thing as bad press would seem to be true in the case of Urban Outfitters. They’ve been called out for cultural insensitivity (what? you don’t like the Holocaust clothes?), promoting an unhealthy lifestyle (see “Eat Less” t-shirt), and downright swiping of artists’ designs. There’s a nice list of Urban Outfitters controversies going here. With such a string of “what were you thinking?” products, you get the impression that the UO marketing department is comprised of toddlers who have been left to fend for themselves. Urban Outfitters knows exactly what it is doing. In an era of too many choices, a retailer can sell a gazillion of just about anything, regardless of who doesn’t like it. UO has carved out a niche that appeals to the hippest among us, who pride themselves on their edginess. If East Coast liberals, or parents who actually care what their kids are up to, or grannies in Des Moines are offended, it doesn’t matter. You can’t wreck a brand like Urban Outfitters because enough people like what they do. Could UO be just as successful without ostensibly promoting getting high and drunk, and starving oneself, to kids? Maybe. But they can be successful with it, too. It doesn’t take much of a philosopher to figure out that moral and cultural relativism, selfishness and apathy will always have an audience in the world of retailing because that’s what’s in the world. UO didn’t invent those concepts, they just reflect them back. Spend ten minutes on the internet and you’ll find out there is something for everyone; what is offensive to some will make a fortune for someone else. So, Urban Outfitters will go on selling $139 vintage t-shirts of which there are only one (okay) on the de rigeur starved-looking models, 8 oz. of vinegar as a hair rinse for $18, and hats that suggest you hipsters “play dirty.” Who’s minding the store? UO is, and very well. And what are they thinking? What they want you to think. If you need any further instructions for being a hipster, click here. If you found this post useful, share it your audience. Kim Phillips is a marketer, artist and teacher who helps companies of all sizes reach their audiences with creative branding, social media, websites, content management, email marketing, and direct mail. She is based in Nashville, Tennessee. Contact Me | Facebook | Twitter @LucidKim | LinkedIn  | Google+     this post Lucid Marketing can help you make your marketing the best it can be. Call us today at 615.829.0772 or click here to send an email. Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Lucid Marketing, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back...

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How to sell something ugly with great packaging.

How to sell something ugly with great packaging.

Your product may not be ugly, but if you’re not selling enough of them, it may be in the packaging. French supermarket chain Intermarché did something brilliant: they took something ugly and made people want it. Thus was born the Inglorious line of fruits and vegetables. How did they turn misshapen and discolored produce into sales? With perfect marketing. What’s that, you ask? Watch the video, then observe the steps below it. Find a niche not currently being filled. Get your raw materials for next to nothing. Find the beauty in being different. Have a sense of humor. Package it well. Put a great price on it. Advertise the hell out of it. When we say “packaging,” we don’t mean the cartons that sit on the shelf or hang on the rack. We mean everything. In the same way that a logo is not, by itself, the “brand,” the package is the whole megillah: packaging is the personality, the look, the feel, the position in the market. Most importantly, the package is the space the product takes up in the consumer’s mind. Let’s go over that again: The package is the space the product takes up in the consumer’s mind. If you aren’t selling retail goods, this notion of great packaging still applies to your business. You could be a nonprofit, or a doctor, or a school, or a marketing consultant. Where do you sit on the “shelf” of possible choices? Are you just one of a huge group whose members look more or less alike? Or do you stand out? Ask yourself whether you can do all of the numbered items above in creating your packaging. #1 may be hard, but it will make all the others easier. #2 may not be possible at all. But you can do #3 through #7. If this post was helpful, you can subscribe at the top of the page; please share with a colleague. Kim Phillips is a marketer, artist and teacher who helps companies of all sizes to reach their audiences with creative branding, social media, websites, content management, email marketing, and direct mail. She is based in Nashville, Tennessee. Contact Me | Facebook | Twitter @LucidKim | LinkedIn  | Google+     this post Lucid Marketing can help you make your marketing the best it can be. Call us today at 615.829.0772 or click here to send an email. Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Lucid Marketing, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back and the source of the republication clearly noted. Excerpts, commentary, and fair use applications should be accompanied by a link back to the original content on this...

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20 ways to guard your brand’s effectiveness

20 ways to guard your brand’s effectiveness

Guarding your brand is critical; it’s the most important marketing asset you’ve got. In a recent post, The Financial Brand put together a handy checklist for a marketing self-assessment. All business owners, CEOs, and marketing managers should run through the list. Here are some highlights… “We have a differentiated brand strategy.” Do you? The key lies in the answer to this question: “What can we say about our brand that no competitor can say about theirs?” If you are a financial institution, answering that question will be really hard. From a consumer’s point of view (the only one that matters), there isn’t a nickel’s difference between what banks have to offer: products, technology, convenience… they all have all of that. If you are some other sort of business, the question is the same. “Employees understand our brand and how they can live it out.” Do they? What have you done to make sure? And do they have the authority ~ and budget ~ to walk it out? Or do they look at your mission statement, roll their eyes and think, “Yeah, right.” No? Are you sure? “We have an advanced digital marketing strategy.” If so, you are among the elite. The technology that powers marketing is moving so rapidly that, unless you are an industry giant, you’ll need help keeping up. It will also be important to understand at a very granular level which digital marketing platforms your audience pays the most attention to and focus your efforts on those. It’s simply not possible to do it all. Even the ones that look the easiest, like social media, take far more work than you first imagine. Once you determine where your company is in terms of your brand’s effectiveness, there will be some work to do. As you do it, guard your brand assets zealously. Here’s how. If this post was helpful, you can subscribe at the top of the page; please share with a colleague. Contact Me | Facebook | Twitter @LucidKim | LinkedIn  | Google+     this post With over 30 years of experience in financial services marketing, Lucid Marketing has the skills to make your marketing the best it can be. Call us today at 615.829.0772 or click here to send an email. Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Lucid Marketing, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back and the source of the republication clearly noted. Excerpts, commentary, and fair use applications should be accompanied by a link back to the original content on this site.  ...

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The makings of a perfect logo.

The makings of a perfect logo.

If you’ve ever wondered how brand designers make their creative choices, there’s a bit of science to it. For example, blue conveys trustworthiness. Sans-serif fonts tend to have more weight, more punch. But there are other considerations, like the personality of the entity being branded. Lego is for kids, so their logo uses the much-maligned (and deservedly so) Comic Sans font. Whether it was a conscious choice or not, red and black are highly visible, if a bit jarring; not a bad thing when you’re trying to stand out on the shelf at the toy store. Take a look at your logo: does it include a graphic element (icon) or is it all text? Kellogg’s and Budweiser are words-only and are plenty memorable with no icon. What makes a perfect logo? No one formula works in every case, but the SEO company Tasty Placement did an excellent study of fonts and colors used in major brands; enjoy. Infographic by TastyPlacement. Need the perfect logo for you? Contact Me | Facebook | Twitter @LucidKim | LinkedIn  Google+   With over 30 years of experience in financial services marketing, Lucid Marketing has the skills to make your marketing the best it can be. Call us today at 615.829.0772 or click here to send an email. Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Lucid Marketing, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back and the source of the republication clearly noted. Excerpts, commentary, and fair use applications should be accompanied by a link back to the original content on this...

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Want to be first in Google search? Stop blocking the way.

Want to be first in Google search? Stop blocking the way.

Joe Shlemiel, owner of Joe’s Outrageously Cheep Hammers in Newark, New Jersey, types the following into his browser:  www.joesoutrageouslycheephammers.com and badda-boom, badda-bing! His website turns up first in Google search results. I’m good to go, thinks Joe. He doesn’t check his Google analytics, so he doesn’t know that only his current customers or people who find him completely by accident have ever clicked on his site. If they have. He had his nephew put up an all-Flash website 10 years ago, and he hasn’t changed it since. He’s never tried searching on “tools Newark” or “affordable tools” or anything that an actual person who never heard of him might type into their browser. Even if he did, his website is built on technology so old that it won’t be seen by search engines anyway. He’s not registered with any online directories. He did a postcard once, a few years ago, but it didn’t bring him any business. He runs a two-inch ad every week in the local newspaper he never reads. And he wonders why his hammers are getting dusty. It’s the bad economy, he tells himself. “Build it and they will come” may work in baseball fantasies, but it’s not marketing. Joe has competition… really, really big competition. If he’s going to sell hammers, what he really needs to sell is a better experience; people can get hammers lots of places, and they will probably buy a hammer at the first place they see that has them. Joe would do better to engage his prospects with the results of the hammer purchase… DIY tutorials about home improvement projects, thrilled spouse over a repair finally done, happy kid in tree house built with dad’s hammer… whatever moves the buyer emotionally. Did you find this post helpful? If so, please share with colleagues. Contact Me | Facebook | Twitter @LucidKim | LinkedIn | Google+ Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Lucid Marketing, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back and the source of the republication clearly noted. Excerpts, commentary, and fair use applications should be accompanied by a link back to the original content on this...

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