Have you heard, 40 is the new 20? Well, I’m not sure about how true that statement is, but I can say that in Coca-Cola’s case, as a 134-year-old company, it’s as fresh, hip and relevant as a startup, with the reputation (and probably financial backing) a startup would kill for. Age isn’t keeping that brand down at all. Coca-Cola is a prime example of an old brand that is staying relevant and isn’t falling prey to becoming an antiquated brand.
If you haven’t heard of or seen the “Share a Coke” campaign, I would assume you’re in the minority. I’ve found myself, on more than one occasion (or more like 10 occasions), digging through shelves of Diet Cokes looking for the one that says “Jane.” I still haven’t found it yet, but it doesn’t stop me from looking.
From my point-of-view, here’s how Coke has done it right, 134-years-old and all:
What other campaign examples can you think of that really show an old brand staying fresh and hip? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.]]>
The backlash on native advertising (or sponsored content) clearly hit a popular wave with comedian John Oliver’s 11-minute piece last week on the subject. Oliver, formerly of the Daily Show and now helming his own HBO show, Last Week Tonight, took issue with the blithe disregard of news media’s “church and state” rule between editorial and advertising.
If you missed it, here it is:
The piece was funny, clever and actually made some valid points about the encroachment of advertising on news content. We particularly liked his compromise/proposal at the end, suggesting that if news now needs to integrate advertising into its content, why not reciprocate and put some news into the advertising? John, we’re exploring those options already with our clients.
Interestingly and most tellingly, Oliver had to disclose that HBO actually ran a sponsored content campaign to build awareness for his show. An odd twist that native advertising helped him gain an audience to afford him the opportunity to rant against a tactic HBO successfully used on his behalf.
But we won’t gloat. Since we employ native advertising on behalf of many of our clients, let’s take this opportunity to dispel some myths about the practice:
We can all bemoan the trend of seeing more native ads in our news content. While it was annoying at the time, part of me still wants to return to the days when Time Warner’s Fortune magazine would never compromise their “church and state” policy between editorial and advertising. It was honorable and they could afford to do it. But if you want to blame the tide of native advertising on anyone, a mirror might come in handy. Once we consumers decided we no longer wanted to pay for news, the rebirth of sponsored content became a reality.
For now, it’s working. Brands are seeing great results and readers are enjoying the content. After all, if it worked for HBO and John Oliver, there must be something to it, right?]]>
For advertisers, there has always been this preconceived notion that appealing to a younger audience is one of the best ways to grow your company’s revenue, and in many ways this idea is right. Lining up younger customers, building loyalty and encouraging them to interact with your brand are great ways to increase the bottom line. But what if I told you that the older generations might have more to offer than your young hipsters in thick-rimmed glasses and ankle-high boots? That’s right, strap in, follow along and see why going old can offer your company a higher return for your efforts.
More Expendable Income
Let’s take a quick look at some numbers.
This is probably a no brainer, but 35- to 70-year-olds have more expendable income than their younger counterparts since they have been in the workforce for a much longer time. Not only that, they are more likely to use their credit cards and don’t have to worry about crippling school debt.
Still a Growing Demographic
Some of you might be thinking, no way, but I am here to tell you, way. Those 35- to 70-year-olds are growing in number, but why? Because Baby Boomers, the generation that increased the U.S. population by almost one-third, are still around and the majority of Generation X has joined them as well. Couple that with better healthcare and 35-70 is quickly becoming the majority, and it’s important that we remember that.
What You Should Do
In 2012, over 80 percent of advertising budgets were thrown at the age group of 18-34. Don’t you think it’s time to rethink those budgets, and maybe take a step in the other direction? Me thinks that’s right. But don’t start throwing cash all willy-nilly. Do like you should with any decision you make, and conduct research. If your product is geared toward tech savvy Apple-mongers, maybe it’s better to stick with that younger audience. Maybe your advertising efforts are already hitting the older generation without you knowing it. Be informed, and keep an ear to the ground.
Thanks for reading, and if you have any comments (negative or positive, but positive is preferred), questions or concerns, please shoot them over and maybe we can have an interesting conversation.]]>
It’s a fact, PPBH is turning 30 this year. That’s right, we are taking the arduous step out of our late twenties and welcoming our thirties with open arms. While we, like an thirty-something, feel anything but old, 30 years is a real achievement for an advertising agency. So we are taking this month to talk about some of the ways we have kept our brand fresh after all these years and how others have as well. Because we know that for long-standing brands, staying fresh and relevant is key.
Look for these articles this month on the PPBH blog:
Staying Fresh by Going Old
When you Know it’s Time to Bring the Spark Back to your Brand
Top Tagline Hits and Misses
The Oldest Brands that are Still Around
This month we celebrated not one but two five-year anniversaries at PPBH. Both Christin and Christina work in the Public Involvement department here at PPBH and both of them have helped raise the bar with their hard work and PI know-how.
Christina came to PPBH in 2009 to work on the I-15 CORE project and has since worked with many of our PI clients. Her love for the outdoors, volleyball background, amazing work ethic and great sense of humor were the inspiration for her poster.
Christin started with PPBH in 2009 as well and has become our expert on air quality and transportation. She juggles motherhood and work like a pro and never fails to impress us with both her quality of work and her outstanding fashion-sense.
We want to say thank you to both of these women and we look forward to working with them for years to come.]]>
Gamification isn’t something necessarily new, but it is a tried and true method of improving a brand’s image that is often times left unutilized. In case you didn’t know, gamification is the use of game thinking and game mechanics in non-game contexts to engage with users.
In simpler terms, gamification takes some function or message and turns it into something that feels like, or in some cases is, an interactive game. That might sound labor intensive and wallet draining, but this isn’t necessarily the case. Here are some interesting examples of gamification. If you’re currently struggling to find some new ideas, maybe these examples (which are in no particular order) are something you could explore.
5. Code Academy: Badges + Day Counter
Code Academy is an awesome website that’s designed to help people learn how to code everything from basic HTML to PHP. The problem? Getting someone to sit down and work through an entire tutorial can be difficult to say the least. In order to keep people interested in learning how to code, Code Academy implemented gamification into their website. As you’re working through a particular lesson you’ll be awarded with small badges and achievements. You’re also rewarded for coming back everyday as the website keeps track of how many days in a row you’ve spent studying. These are simple changes that can make a big difference in motivating people to continue using the Code Academy website.
4. TravelWise Tracker: Competition + Badges
TravelWise Tracker is a cool website that helps people combat pollution. Instead of driving your car everywhere you can earn points by logging in all of your energy conserving trips like carpooling, walking, biking or using the transit. This gamification functions similar to Code Academy by rewarding participants with badges when they complete certain tasks (like logging in 10 walking trips for example) but then takes the idea one step further by putting everyone into competing groups. The easy-to-use layout combined with the competitive nature of the website makes you want to come back again and again.
3. Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream: BuzzFeed Quiz
The rise in popularity of the BuzzFeed quiz has been shocking to say the least, but statistics show that a vast majority of people who start a quiz, finish it. As such, many brands have started taking advantage of this by creating snarky, quick-witted and very targeted BuzzFeed quizzes. Ben & Jerry’s created one about Ice Cream flavors. Not only was this viewed nearly a million times, but I’m willing to bet that more than one person went out and tried a new flavor of ice cream after this quiz told them which version matched best with their personality.
2. M&M: Facebook Game Ads
An even simpler way to add some gamification to your marketing strategy is to use social media. Considering how easy it is to share pictures online, one idea is to create an image that functions as a game, like M&M did with this “I Spy,” knock-off. It was actually met with a great deal of success and helped solidify M&M’s social media presence on Facebook.
1. Burger King Video Game
Of course, if you have enough money and time you could always make an actual video game advertising nothing but your product. That’s what Burger King did. In a shockingly successful stunt, Burger King created three entire video games based around their character/mascot “The King.” With the popularity of the smart phone a mobile game might be a more realistic and wise choice if you do want to make a full-fledged video game, but if you’ve got the money and the time, this could be the idea you’re looking for to better engage with your users.
Ad fraud is a scary concept. The whole idea that there are fake websites with robots simulating clicks and actually perusing YOUR website is terrifying to marketers.
To get more background, all advertising mediums have a certain amount of discrepancy. TV ratings only need to deliver 90% of what was ordered. Radio isn’t typically posted on, but strives for 90% delivery. Print has a bit of waste with people who receive the magazine/newspaper but don’t see the page with your ad.
Online advertising, unsurprisingly, has some waste as well. The current industry standard is 80% of valid activity, with up to 20% of fraudulent activity being accepted. Digital is traceable at all levels, so it seems to fall under a bit more scrutiny than other advertising mediums. That being said, if you have a good digital firm they can work to reduce the amount of fraudulent activity and maximize ROI.
The first line of defense against fraudulent activity is to use an ad server. Ad servers empower the advertiser (as opposed to the media channel or network) to reduce fraud. Here are the ways PPBH uses its ad server:
Another essential step to preventing ad fraud is to run on trusted websites, networks and real-time bidding networks (RTB). If you’re running your ads on a specific website, spend some time on it to make sure there’s no dummy content or below-the-fold ads. If you’re running on a network, ask for a full list of sites. Lastly (and probably most importantly), if you’re running through an RTB network, know which exchanges they tap into and look them up on ComScore.
A third step is to use a third-party ad fraud technology. Any reputable network or exchange will work with dozens of them already, so ask them who they use and for reports. Also some agencies will use their own third-party ad fraud technology on top of their ad server and media partners.
The best way to tell if you have fake activity is to look at your results. A high bounce rate is usually a good indicator, but with how advanced bots are some go as far to browse your website, watch video content or even sign place items in a cart! What no bot will do however, is complete a purchase. You’ll really be able to see the quality of your ad placements by how many purchases are made as a result.
Ad fraud is scary but combatable. By using an ad server, partnering with reputable media companies, using ad fraud technologies and measuring your results you’ll be set for effective digital advertising.]]>
Summer: A time when most of us would rather be outside, swimming, hiking or anything other than working. We may be in the “dog days” of summer, but that doesn’t mean our work or productivity has to suffer. Make the most of the “slow” time—clients on vacation, team members taking time off, etc.—to get organized and kick off planning for the new year.
Yes, I said plan for the new year. But, it’s only July you may say. Well, time flies and now’s the time to take a step back and really evaluate/identify your approach and strategic plan for the new year. This doesn’t mean you have to have that 2015 strategic plan done, set in stone and bound in binder. Rather, use this time to do some research, investigate and search for new tools, media and opportunities to take your brand, company or product to the next level in 2015. Taking the time now, while things may be “slow” and vacations are in full swing, will reap many benefits in the months to come and most certainly in 2015.
Not sure where to start? Here are a few areas and ideas on where to start:
Come September, you’ll be happy you put the time in now, in the dog days of summer, to get some initial planning done. Here’s to a wonderful 2015!]]>
It has been a busy summer for PPBH and we have added a few new members to the team! We are proud to say that we have hired eight very talented individuals over the last couple of months.
It is PPBH tradition to ask all newbies a few random, yet extremely useful, questions. Here are some important facts that you should know about our newest team members.
(From left to right above).
James Taylor is our newest designer. His favorite book is Peter Pan and if he were stranded on a desert island, the one food he would miss most is Graham Canyon Ice Cream.
Brian Shaw joined the PPBH team as a copywriter. His desk is decorated in the finest Star Wars collectibles, his life motto is “Chwaaaaaaaaaaargh!” – Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) and his favorite jingle is the Imperial March.
Jennifer Whitaker has joined the media team as our newest media planner. Her dream car is a black Aston Martin DB9, preferably outfitted with James Bond type gadgets. Her favorite way to spend the weekend is either doing something outdoors or hanging out with Brad… her cat.
Abby Young is an account manager who comes to us from New York. She loves bacon, and her favorite movie quote is “Do you have anything besides Mexican food?” – Dusty Bottoms, The Three Amigos.
Rochelle Creager has joined our Zero Fatalities Utah team as the community outreach manager. The top two favorite books are 1984 and The Great Gatsby, and if she could meet one person living or dead, it would be Mr. Rogers.
Jason Marty is now a senior account manager at PPBH. When asked his favorite year in school he replied, “Senior year in high school I spent many weekends in Santa Cruz and Tahoe so that was fun. But my final year in college will just be awesome! I’ll be happy to not feel the need to continue onward once I have a masters, I hope!”
Sarah Beth Stephenson has joined our Zero Fatalities Utah team as a community outreach coordinator. She likes Mini Coopers, Jane Austen and chocolate lava cake. And the motto she lives by? “When someone shows you who they are believe them; the first time.” – Maya Angelou.
Andrew Bennett – Andrew is the newest addition to our Las Vegas office and is the public outreach coordinator for Zero Fatalities Nevada. He is also the official chef of our Vegas office. He loves pulled pork sandwiches, the beach and Steve Jobs.
Welcome to the crew everyone! We are excited to have you.
People like to get in shape so it’s not surprising that mobile health and fitness apps are doing well. According to Flurry Insights, health and fitness app usage increased by 62 percent in the past six months and health and fitness tracking apps are growing 87 percent faster than any other app category.
So, with that in mind, here are a few fun a fresh ways that advertisers are jumping on the opportunity:
What kind of advertisements and promotions have you seen on health and fitness apps?]]>