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The Business Of Branding: Audience (Part 3 of 7)
There is a distinct difference in how Gillette sells a razor to a man versus a woman. For starters, the razors themselves are distinct for each gender. The male razor has sharp lines with dark blues. The female razor is curvy with light pastels. As per the websites themselves, the female razor site is bright, refers to women being Goddesses which appeals to emotions, has a video of Jennifer Lopez and uses soft font types. The male site is darker with sharper font types, appeals to men through facts and shows an athlete (slide 1) and beautiful woman (slide 3) in the front page banner.
The second key to successful branding is making it relevant to the audience. Once you have your product/service differentiated, you should determine who your audience is and how you can satisfy that audience’s needs with your product/service.
Appealing to a specific audience can be done in a number of ways: emotions, desires, lifestyles, colors, fonts, animals, beautiful women, topless men, etc. While your brand audience may not call for a topless man holding a puppy, it is important to consider all aspects of who you are trying to reach and the different types of appeals they positively react to.
Taking these audience differences and considering them alongside your own product/service’s differences makes for a more successful branding effort.
Choices = differentiation = equity = awesome
I was told once last year that one of the easiest ways to differentiate is to give students choices. So for my next essay assignment, I gave them choices. I gave them 5 topics to choose from, then also said they could come up with their own if they cleared it with me first.
My rationale was that they’d write better essays if they wrote about something they were at least somewhat interested in. Also, I wouldn’t have to read 130 of the same essay (yay for sanity!). And, since the general task is the same (make a claim and use evidence to support it), I can use the same rubric for all.
I’ll admit though - I was skeptical that this was actually differentiation.
I gave them an outline that was optional to use. This was mainly for the students who had spent most of their middle and high school careers avoiding essays like the plague and therefore had no idea what they were doing.
I suggested they have five paragraphs, but offered more if they felt they needed it.
We did our thesis statements in class. Together.
It worked. Most of them did it. They actually wrote the essay.
I have continued this for every essay assignment I give.
Today though, I have truly understood why this was differentiation. By giving them topics, students who have a hard time writing can find something to write about. The outline helps them tremendously, and they can write a complete, if a little generic, essay about why Macbeth is a tragic hero.
But for my more advanced students, it’s amazing to see what they come up with. Their thesis statements are interesting. Some think of things I hadn’t even realized about the play, and I’ve read it several times. They’ve read it once. Some take a simple thesis statement and make it sing with compelling evidence and brain-squishing analysis.
And each essay has a little bit of themselves in it. Whether it’s my EL kids who are struggling with the language but use a perfect quote, or it’s my advanced kids who put their own spin on a tired theme. It’s a true assessment, scaffolded for all. Because this isn’t an AP class. It’s not an “advanced” class of any sort. It’s a class of varying abilities and experiences, and they all deserve to be pushed, but supported too.
The Business Of Branding: Bringing It All Together (Part 7 of 7)
Over the past week and a half, we have been discussing one of the most important terms in marketing and advertising: branding. But branding is only as useful as you make it. Let’s review the key attributes of successful branding.
Part 2: Differentiation
The first key attribute we discussed was differentiation. In a world of competitive marketing, it is important to define your brand as unique and inherently better than your competition’s brand. Our discussion compared insurance companies and how they use different key phrases, promises and commercial themes to set themselves apart from one another. Consider your own brand and what distinct point(s) of differentiation you can use to stand out in the marketplace.
Part 3: Audience
The second key attribute we discussed was the audience. A brand won’t be successful if it doesn’t speak to your audience. You must make it relevant to your target and build your branding efforts around that group. Being too broad and all-inclusive is a pitfall in audience selection. Our discussion compared Gillette for women to Gillette for men. We observed the difference in color scheme, message, website design and overall package presented to the consumer based on their gender. Who is your brand’s target audience?
Part 4: Consistency
The third key attribute we discussed was the consistency of the brand. Does the brand portray itself consistently at the office headquarters? In its employees? In advertisements? This attribute not only gives consumers a clear message of what the brand is and stands for, but repeats it to them over and over, making it memorable. We looked at McDonald’s and how it consistently sticks with it’s golden arches and “I’m Lovin’ It” theme. Even now, McDonald’s restaurants are attempting to make their stores resemble one another. Think about your brand’s consistency. Does it translate over mediums, employees and appearance?
Part 5: Frequency
The fourth key attribute we discussed was how frequently the brand was expressed. As with consistency, repetition leads to memorability. We talked about Geico and Geico’s “rhetorical questions” ad campaign. Geico came up with several of these that all resemble each other, however have a different rhetorical question that tries to humorously answer itself. In the beginning of each ad, we hear “Can Geico really save you 15% or more on car insurance?” Consider your brand and how frequently it is reaching its target consumer.
Part 6: Call-To-Action
The fifth and final key attribute we discussed was the call-to-action. This is critical. A call-to-action gets people to do something. Sure, they’ve seen your ad, heard your brand message and even thought about how it could benefit them, but what will get them to go and do something about it? Our final example looked at the Sarah McLachlan video ads for animal cruelty. Not only did the animals themselves stare into viewers eyes, but Sarah McLachlan urged people to call (the phone number listed on the screen). Every call-to-action will be unique to the brand and how you want people to respond to your brand. Do you want them to buy it? Donate to it? Ask for it as a Christmas gift? The list is endless. Think about what you want your end result to be and what your call-to-action for that result is.
By considering each of these five key attributes of successful branding, your brand can take steps above your competition and make a lasting impact in the marketplace of consumers.
Corporate Social Responsibility
There is A LOT out there on Corporate Social Responsibility (Operations Mgmt)…
A few websites that you might like to refer to (I’ve tried to stick to Australian):
Corporate Responsibility Index - a bit of general info + summaries about their ‘winners’ in terms of Australian businesses based on the Index they have developed.
HREOC - have a bit on human rights and business (showing its not all just environmental stuff!)
Australian Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility - these guys are a little ‘academic’ in approach with journal articles and more in depth information - maybe good if you are looking to differentiate for the higher performing students.
ActNOW - this is a good issues based website - and this is a summary article re CSR which is quite accessible and has a few mini case study egs too.
There are also a lot of little videos about… will post some of those soon.
it's question 1,3,5,7,9 & 11 :) if anyone can help i will be truly greatful :)
Hey, do you still need help with these exercises or is it going alright? I might be able to help you :)
Physics undergrad. Differentiate in my sleep.
YES I NEED HELP!!