The Warc Blog

The Warc Blog

Delivering entertaining and creative content will hit the sweet spot
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

This post is by Sandra Peat, Strategy Director at ONE TWO FOUR.

More than ever before, consumers are in the driving seat when it comes to brand communications. They are both savvy and cynical, making it ever more challenging to produce content that cuts through. Content can be a fantastic way to build relevance and engagement with your audience, leveraging their interests through credibility and awareness. However, in this day and age, it's essential that brands think beyond the obvious content options and be more creative with how they speak to their audience, while still adding value. To hit the sweet spot, brands must therefore create a balance between their objectives and listening to its audiences' passions - and deliver content when and where they want it.

Adrian Pettett, CEO of Cake, recently made the statement that "There's never been a greater need for boldness and disruption. Ultimately it's about brilliant ideas, now more than ever." Brands need to be more creative and bolder in their approach to content today to stand out and appeal to their audience. More often than not, content is viewed as a sure fire way to deliver messages but brands are not accurately observing how their audience consume content and in what way.


Subjects: Digital, Marketing

26 May 2015 11:44

The shopper of the future: Why young shoppers won't turn their back on physical stores
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

This post is by the team at GfK.

Despite their love of and ease within the online world, today's young people are not exclusively virtual shoppers, glued to their screens throughout the purchase journey. This new generation of digital natives loves the environment of the store, and values the interaction it offers. And they show no signs of changing their viewpoint.

This creates opportunities for brick and click retailers to challenge the purely online players, some of which – like eBay and Amazon – are responding by migrating out of their virtual comfort zone to investigate the high street. Global Young Shopper survey questioned shoppers aged 16-21 in ten markets around the world. Here's what they told us about their online and offline shopping experiences.


Subjects: Consumers, Marketing

19 May 2015 16:31

Pleas, promises and placards: Digital impressions from #GE15
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

This post is by Philip Iorio, media planner at ZenithOptimedia.

Electioneering is a fascinating case study of marketing in action – an intense blast of advertising and PR that highlights both the strengths and limitations of the communications industry.

Deep pockets are no guarantee for success

Considered to have the most draconian political advertising rules in the free world, political adverts are – and have always been – banned on British TV and radio. This ensures the political views broadcast into homes are not determined by those with the deepest pockets. To give you an idea of how deep pockets can be, the battle between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in 2008 saw almost $1bn spent on presidential campaign ads. In 2010 in contrast, UK parties reportedly spent £31m.


Subjects: Marketing

14 May 2015 15:04

Social ROI comes of age: Highlights from Warc Prize for Social Strategy shortlist
Posted by: Lena Roland, Knowledge Officer, Warc
Lena Roland

The Warc Prize for Social Strategy shortlist features 32 entries which Warc subscribers can view here. And what a shortlist! There are some great case studies that demonstrate excellent use of social/digital that drove solid business results. These cases mark a notable maturity in digital marketing, linking earned media to commercial impact.


Subjects: Awards, Marketing, Advertising

13 May 2015 11:50

The Death of Offensive Marketing
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

This post is by David T. Scott, CMO of Gigya.

As a marketer, nothing is more rewarding or lucrative than knowing exactly who your customers are, and being able to provide them with what they want, when they want it, and how they want it. As a customer, nothing can be more frustrating than receiving marketing communications from brands that disregard all of this.

Achieving a long-lasting business-to-customer relationship requires a significant amount of data-driven intelligence, as well as the willingness to embrace new advances in marketing and data management technologies. According to Teradata, just 18 per cent of marketers say they have a single, integrated view of customer actions.

Some businesses are able to thrive by understanding their customers on a granular level, while others struggle to paint a picture beyond simple demographic data. However, two things are abundantly clear. Firstly, the more brands learn about their customers' identities, the more effective they are at marketing to them. Secondly, irrelevant marketing communications are a waste of both time and money at best. At worst, these irrelevant messages can even cause offence. In order to best understand customers and avoid such instances, organisations must break through the identity barrier and market in a more personalised fashion.


Subjects: Data, Marketing

13 May 2015 11:20

Ask a Silly Question: Why the UK Polls Got it Wrong
Posted by: David Penn, Managing Director, Conquest
David Penn

The UK polling industry is currently tearing itself apart over its failure to predict last week’s general election result. Basically, the (mainly online) polls showed both main parties – the Conservatives, led by David Cameron and Labour, led by Ed Miliband – polling at around 34%, yet it was Cameron who won by a margin (37% to 31%) too great to be explained by statistical error. There have already been plenty of theories advanced, including differential turnout figures, and ‘late swings’ (a convenient myth in my view). Instead I want to focus on an issue that has been a hot topic in the commercial MR world for at least a decade now: Are we asking the right questions?

Mark Earls (author of Herd and most recently, Copy Copy Copy) once challenged the market research industry to ‘stop asking silly questions of unreliable witnesses…or at least stop listening to the answers’. Ouch! I thought this harsh because some of us in MR twigged some time ago that people do not always answer the question we think we’re asking them.

People don’t usually ‘lie’ in surveys (why should they?), but often they don’t know their own minds, and sometimes they’re really answering a different question to the one we’re asking. Thus some may interpret a purchase intent question as a kind of ‘brand liking’ scale – I’ll say I’ll buy it because I like it, but I don’t really know if I will. Often we think we’re measuring behaviour when what we’re really measuring is attitude, or a vague disposition.


Subjects: Marketing, Brands, Data

11 May 2015 14:55

Tapping into consumers' intentions
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

This post is by Rebecca Batey and Sarah Fitzsimmons, Insight Team at Time Inc. UK.

If you ever needed convincing that the consumer marketplace for advertising is changing, and becoming more complex with more avenues than ever before, then Marketing Week Live and Insight 15 certainly proved that. It is clear that there has been a shift in power over to customers and consumers. And with more information than we know what to do with, how can we truly understand what our consumers want?

Time Inc. UK's Insight team spent two days at this year's event, and was able to identify five key emerging trends to help us better understand consumers.


Subjects: Consumers, Marketing

11 May 2015 10:31

What viewers really think of political ads
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

A neurological study into viewers' subconscious reactions to two political ads reveals interesting learnings for the two main parties says Neuro-Insight CEO Heather Andrew.

As the 2015 election campaign draws to close, many think social media has supplanted the traditional party political advert with more column inches devoted to the #milifandom versus #cameronettes hashtags than to either of the main party's videos. However, our study into the neurological impact of two recently launched party political ads shows they still carry considerable clout. We decided to use brain imaging techniques to explore the subconscious real-time effect of a Labour promo starring Martin Freeman and a Conservative broadcast featuring David Cameron. Participants who viewed the ads also took part in a subconscious association exercise linking words typically featured in election campaigns, such as "leadership" and "economy" to each party's logos. This was carried out before and after the films were viewed.

Bearing in mind that participants weren't asked about their political views, the findings reveal six insights into the impact of political ads on viewers' perceptions of each political "brand."


Subjects: Marketing

05 May 2015 15:00

Market Research Summit: Interview with Rhea Fox & Steve Wills
Posted by: Guest blog
Guest blog

This post is by the Market Research Summit.

The Market Research Summit 2015 team talked with Rhea Fox, Head of Research with eBay UK and Steve Wills, Director of The Insight Academy, to find out more about the new approach they are proposing to prove Return on Research and Analysis, which they will be discussing at Market Research Summit 2015 on 19 May.

First of all, how have you two come together to work on this project to create a methodology for measuring Return on Research and Analysis?

SW: We run a best practice community, the Insights Management Forum, which brings together 25 major companies to focus on different issues and eBay is one of our members. We set the Forum up 10 years ago and one of the first projects we agreed to look at what how to prove ROI on insight – it was the holy grail back then and it's still the holy grail now. In recent years, we have seen companies get better and better at it – we've been working with Rhea at eBay who has particularly taken this cause to heart and created real progress.


Subjects: Marketing

27 April 2015 17:24

If it's not love, then it's the bomb that will bring us together
Posted by: Eaon Pritchard, Strategic planning consultant, Australia
Eaon Pritchard

For a time during World War II, the chances of a member of US bomber crews actually making it back from any given mission were on the side of slim.

The nature of the work meant that bombers were out for a long time; they were massive cumbersome planes visible from a long way away, and their ability to do serious damage if successful meant they were the number one targets of both the guns on the ground and in the air.

For the bomber crews, each subsequent mission piled up the odds against them making it back this time.


Subjects: Consumers, Marketing

22 April 2015 12:31


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