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Wednesday, 22 November 2017 00:00

Influencer Marketing – The Sliver Bullet

Okay, so basic stuff first. We all understand the human truth - we value opinions of people we trust. Anyone who can exercise some influence can be called an Influencer, and Influencer Marketing is based on that premise.

Recently in one of the meetings with a large Influencer Agency, I wanted to know what they tell their clients. They were quick, 'The list of Influencers and their reach, interest, background, tone etc'. I heard, asked them, 'What else?’ They continued, ‘We give them a good brief, talk about the brand etc etc'. I said, Great. 'What else?' They looked around. Reassuringly continued further, 'We also give them the 'possible things' to say. We don’t give them content to simply cut-paste, we are different'. As he took a sip of water, I as expressionless as before, thanked him for the great revelation and then looked around, asked one more time, ‘What else..?' Pin drop silence. They now looked at me and said ‘What else..?’ It was my turn.

I asked them three questions:

How many times have you used data? Data in terms of algorithm based analytics, which can deeply convey the ‘nature’ of your influencer’s influence and convince your client all about the science, influencer’s brand affinities, interests etc etc. Second, do you boldly dwell into the return on investment? How will it drive sales, for instance?

Thirdly, do you treat it like a campaign, developing a campaign strategy with a build up, the idea, the extensions and amplification leading to the KPIs?
I added one more question. How are you comparing your Influencer campaign with the clients’ other current running traditional digital campaign? KPI to KPI.
Whether budget strapped start-ups or other developed brands, Influencer Marketing is turning out to be a key element in Digital Marketing mix. There are times it has delivered 10x returns. A brand ‘Shoes of Prey’ used a beauty blogger (vlogger) resulting in a 300% increase in sales.

Some observations:

Earned Media Value: It's important to talk about the Earned Media, the Influencer campaign generated. Provide examples where it has resulted in ‘incremental sales’, when regular consumers were engaged with influencer content for a corresponding test period.

Experimentation: Tie-in the Influencer campaign with a great offer/ deal. That works wonderful. Walmart clubbed both together and got a 45% increase in redemption. Another brand saw 30% increase in footfalls in a retail shop when measured before and after.

Micro Influencers: Don’t go obsessive with Influencers. Look for the more impactful Micro Influencers. They can be better than larger Influencers. Sometimes its also not needed to go with Influencers from the same industry. They could be from an unrelated one, as long as the connection is made. An SUV from Buick rather than picking automotive influencers, it picked Pinterest influencers and created a unique proposition.

Grassroots: Using social listening will tell you who is talking about your brand and is happy using it. Think of Fans, Super Fans, Micro Influencers, General Influencers, Influential followers and all that. Another great discussion we did recently was about identifying influencers who are going to be big soon and getting to bond with them.

Campaign Mind-set: There are several great examples of brands getting Influencer marketing right. Please don’t just think of a list and rush into it. Conceive it like a campaign, think before and after and build it.

SAP used it to sell its B2B conference using influencers to create video. Another retailer got 50 instagrammers to wear the same dress.

Combine Creativity + StoryTelling + Uniqueness of each channel and what technology can enable. Instagram isn’t the only one to use. Surprise the audience with the choice of the Influencer. Use both science and creativity. For ‘Got Milk’ campaign influencers were chosen which no one expected.

The ROARS Formula:

R (Research Research Research - the most important part) + O (Objectives, very sharply defined) + A (Alignment with the audience, brand) + R (Right influencer - Study their reach and engagement) + S (Scope for creativity, strong content and freedom to the Influencer to build authenticity).

Remember Influencer marketing will lead to advocacy, sales, buzz, SEO all of that. Whether your consumers are in the awareness stage, or active consideration or purchase.. this will deliver, if done right.

As a trend some brands are getting Influencers to participate in long term partnership and help collaborate to create new product designs. Two brands - Target and Band-Aid are doing this as we speak.

Go ahead and Good Luck! Over 200 mn people are using ad blocking software. They don't want ads, just honest opinion. You’ve just found the silver bullet! Write your success stories for others to learn..


Written by Rajeev Sharma,Founder,Awrizon

Consumers around the world are displaying a growing preference for global brands rather than locally manufactured products, according to a new study by performance management company Nielsen.

The annual Nielsen Global Brand-Origin Report highlights consumers’ preference for and sentiment toward products manufactured by local manufacturers versus large global/multinational brands across 34 categories. While the survey findings have pointed to a relatively balanced view across global and local brands in recent years, the latest results show consumer preference is tipping toward global brands across the majority of categories.

Preference for global brands was strongest in the baby wipes/diapers and baby food/formula categories, where just 7% and 10% of consumers, respectively, said they prefer to buy brands from local manufacturers. Other categories where consumers showed low preference for local brands include vitamins/supplements (12% prefer local), pet food (12%), feminine care products (13%), energy drinks/sports drinks (14%), and canned/tinned food products (15%). Conversely, categories where consumers were more inclined to opt for a locally manufactured product over a global brand included dairy products (54%), biscuits/chips/snacks/cookies (32%), ice-cream (31%) and mineral/bottled water (30%).

Categories that saw the most notable swing in preference away from local brands compared to the previous survey conducted in 2015 include mineral/bottled water (down 22 percentage pts [pps] to 30%), instant noodles (down 21 pps to 21%), oral care products (down 15 pps to 18%), laundry products (down 13 pps to 21%), pet foods (down 13 pps to 12%), carbonated soft drinks (down 12 pps to 18%) and baby wipes/diapers (down 11 pps to 7%). The hair care (18%), alcohol (16%) and baby food/formula (10%) categories all saw a 10-pp decline in preference for local brands from 2015.

“In today’s world of hyper-connectivity and globalization, consumers have a wider array of product choices than ever before,” observes Regan Leggett, Head of Foresight and Thought Leadership, Growth Markets, Nielsen. “Importantly, consumers also have greater access to global brands than they have in the past, thanks to factors such as expanding distribution, e-commerce offerings, and modern trade retail channels. As a result, we’re seeing a swing in preference toward the big multinationals.

“Other factors at play include consumer perception around quality, particularly in high involvement categories such as baby care.”

At a regional level, market nuances were evident, with consumer preference for global versus local brands varying widely within a number of categories. In the dairy category, consumer preference for local brands was much more pronounced in Africa and the Middle East (73%) and Europe (66%) compared to the global average (54%). In the biscuits/chips/snacks/cookies category, consumer preference for local brands was prevalent in Southeast Asia (50%), Africa and the Middle East (41%) and Latin America (41%) compared to 32% globally. In Europe, consumers were much more likely to opt for local alcohol brands compared to the global average (22% vs. 16%), while Southeast Asian consumers showed stronger affinity for local instant noodle brands compared to the global average (39% vs. 21%).

“The variation across regions illustrates the relative strength of local manufacturers within specific categories, particularly where they are appealing to local consumers’ tastes,” emphasizes Leggett. “In Southeast Asia, for example, where noodles are a staple in consumers’ diets, local manufacturers have been able to maintain a stronghold on the category. Similarly in European markets locally sourced dairy products are perceived to be of a higher quality than imported products.”

Leggett concluded: “In an increasingly global world, the battle of the brands comes down to understand consumers’ evolving needs, behaviors, lifestyles and tastes. Any brand, be it local or global, that is able to tap into these consumer preferences will be best-placed to win the hearts and minds of consumers in the future.”

In a global, real-time data-led campaign devised and executed by J Walter Thompson Sydney, more than 40,000 Subway restaurants in more than 60 countries recently invited customers to join the Subway Live Feed to help fight hunger around the world.

The Subway Live Feed concept, developed specifically to celebrate World Sandwich Day on Friday November 3, saw Subway partnering with local hunger-relief charities. Locally, Subway partnered with Foodbank Australia.

For every Sub bought, Subway gave a meal to someone in need through partner charities. Meals donated on World Sandwich Day were tracked through the Subway Live Feed digital ticker in real time.

For the majority of participating countries, a live API sourced from Subway’s point-of-sale devices at the restaurants was used to demonstrate in real time a country-specific and global live tally of the number of meals that Subway was giving to charity.

Individual countries displayed their tally on their campaign microsite, on digital banners and on dynamic outdoor billboards around the world, including 42nd Street, NYC. Word was also spread via social.

The data driven idea was conceived and developed locally by J. Walter Thompson Sydney and then expanded to a global campaign with reach in 60 countries.

J Walter Thompson Sydney won the Subway World Sandwich Day business in a global pitch against agencies from Canada, UK, USA, MEA and LATAM in August. Locally, J. Walter Thompson was awarded the Subway Australia account following a pitch earlier this year.

The campaign was supported by a robust public relations campaign that worked to engage corporate staff, Franchisees and Sandwich Artists in the lead up to the day, as well as drive awareness with guests through influencer content and local area marketing. The J Walter Thompson campaign in Australia was supported by other WPP AUNZ agencies including Webling, PPR and Ikon.

Chris Carroll, the Chief Advertising Officer at Subway, said: “The Live Feed concept has been our first globally activated campaign for the brand and it is a huge success. Subway Live Feed enabled us to engage with our guests in ways we haven’t before – from using live data to drive momentum, and empowering our staff and guests to make a real difference to people in need.

“It is really promising to see our Australian agency, J Walter Thompson, leading a very successful global campaign, and we look forward to making this an annual campaign for Subway.”

Live Feed Results:

• 13.3M meals were donated to charity across the globe as a direct result of the campaign.
• Sales at the 40,000 Subway restaurants increased by up to 20%.
• Locally, over 287,000 meals were donated in Australia, and over 90,000 in New Zealand as part of Live Feed.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017 00:00

When recognition unlocks brand meaning

According to a recent New York Times article few people can accurately draw the logos of well-known brands like Starbucks, Wal-Mart and Burger King. But the study conducted by Signs.com may not be as important as it first appears. The important thing about a logo is that it be recognized and associated with the right brand, not that it can be recalled in detail.

We all know that growing physical and mental availability are important if a brand is to grow sales. But what exactly is mental availability? Professor Byron Sharp states,

“A brand’s mental availability refers to the probability that a buyer will notice, recognize and/or think of a brand in buying situations.”

So one of the ways that marketers ensure a brand is mentally available is to make sure it is easily recognized. When a potential buyer recognizes a brand it should trigger an instinctive response to the brand (a gestalt of all the ideas and feelings they have for that brand) and, if and when they deliberate their purchase, positive and motivating associations that will help encourage them to buy and pay the price asked.

To understand this aspect of brand performance Kantar Millward Brown measures the strength of brand assets, including the logo, and how well they cue the brand. This is the latest tool in our Neuroscience portfolio which uses reaction time methods to identify the strength of brand assets.

The approach measures three key qualities:

Fame: how many people are able to correctly associate an asset with a particular brand. This gives us an overall indication of how well-known an asset is in relation to the brand.

Speed: the speed of response (regardless of whether that response is correct or not) reflects how intuitively associated an asset is with a brand.

Distinctiveness: the strongest brand assets are those that are also distinctive and unique to the brand. We measure misattribution of an asset to other brands to help identify this distinctiveness.

Brands ranked in the top quarter on our Brand Triggers Index have an average Salience over 50% higher than those in the bottom quarter.

So does it matter that people cannot accurately recall and draw a brand’s logo? I would argue not. What is far more important is that they recognize it intuitively, without hesitation, and associate it to the right brand.


Written by Nigel Hollis,Executive Vice President and Chief Global Analyst at Kantar Millward Brown.

The Justin Timberlake starrer animated-musical-comedy premieres on Star Movies on the 26th of November at 1 PM and 9 PM.

Staying true to the promise of being the destination for Hollywood Blockbusters, Star Movies brings to the Indian Television audiences, a fan favourite film Trolls. Directed by Mike Mitchell and Walt Dohrn, Trolls stars the likes of Justin Timberlake, Anna Kendrick, Zooey Deschanel, Kunal Nayyar among others who have given their voice to the characters in the film.

The movie, much loved by adults and children alike, makes it to the Indian television screens for the first time on Star Movies, 26th November 2017 at 1PM and 9PM.

The movie is another animation masterpiece from Dreamworks, the studio that gave us Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and How to Train Your Dragon. Not only does the animation catch the attention, the music too hits the right note. A highlight of the film is the music and it features the Academy Award nominated song, “Can’t Stop the Feeling” by Justin Timberlake.

Trolls is a story that sheds light on Poppy, the happiest among the race of Trolls. Like the rest of the Trolls, Poppy always sings, stays content and remains optimistic. Their enemies are the Bergens, who are always pessimistic. So when the Bergens invade the Troll village in search of happiness, things get quite interesting. What ensues is a storyline that leaves you in splits but also pulls at your heartstrings as the Trolls fight for survival.

Owen Gleiberman from Variety summarises the film quite aptly when he writes, “What's the nature of happiness? ‘Trolls’ is the right film to pose that question, because it's an ecstatically happy movie, a giddy EDM kiddie musical that sends you out on a high.” Just one of the examples to show that Trolls is not just for kids, it appeals to all age groups and is a complete family experience.

Trolls will premiere on Star Movies and Star Movies HD on November 26, 1PM and 9PM.

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