The Warc Blog

Deconstructing the Buzz around the Royal Wedding

Posted by: David Penn, Managing Director, Conquest

Blog author

For some, the day of the Royal Wedding will be The Biggest Day of the Year. I for one can hardly contain my excitement - and it’s nice to know I’m not alone. The Metaphorix® Royal Wedding Study*, carried out by my company for ITN, looks into how the UK’s population really feels about Kate, Prince William and their upcoming wedding and finds a nation in thrall to a (relatively) unknown girl.

There is a truly astonishing level of buzz around this event - eclipsing any other social phenomenon that we've measured over the last 12 months, including the World Cup or even the launch of the iPad. Maybe that’s not a surprise, given the crazed media attention, but what is surprising is the extent to which Kate drives up many of the figures - simply by just being who she is. William is pretty well regarded anyway, but when her persona is factored in, he becomes significantly more loved, more inspirational and more charismatic. The two of them are, in branding terms, simply much more than the sum of their parts.

26 April 2011, 17:23
Just sayin'...

Posted by: Robert Passikoff, President, Brand Keys, Inc

Blog author

It's earnings season, and each day brings new reports of how brands have fared in the marketplace. For us, this time is always a strange sort of celebration. Though no champagne or greeting cards are involved, we at Brand Keys do admit to some corporate congratulations of our own as we compare what we predicted against what actually came to pass.

Fear not for our objective researcher soul, however. There is no danger of our collective egos running amok. We cannot help as we examine the data to remember it isn't our personal prescience but our predictive metrics that deliver the kind of line-up we see between our engagement rankings and corporate earnings. Without the consumer data, we would be left to tea leaves or listening to Charlie Sheen rants backwards to try to discern the future. And, frankly, that's a strategy that's not only intellectually painful, but also more miss than hit. Just sayin'.

26 April 2011, 17:12
Eight things on Social

Posted by: Waqar Riaz, , Cheil Worldwide

Blog author

These eight points are definitely not a final word on achieving social success.

But hopefully they will give us some leads on how best to plan one of the biggest buzz words of digital times - 'Social Media' - for brands.

21 April 2011, 14:14
Social infection - making sense of a new marketing epidemic

Posted by: David Penn, Managing Director, Conquest

Blog author

We know buzz is the wildfire effect that transforms ideas into socially infectious phenomena that spread through populations with the speed of epidemics. And, in the era of social media, it's the new marketing holy grail as advertisers look for new ways to subvert the constraints of the traditional media model. But if we want to harness and exploit the power of buzz, we need to understand why some ideas catch fire and spread whilst others fizzle out.

Why do we all go bananas over a meerkat, or a guy in a fetching bath-towel talking about “lady fragrances”? What are the emotions that impel us to hit the send button and share great ideas with our friends and followers?

14 April 2011, 15:43
The 'tensions' of Chinese women

Posted by: David Tiltman, Head of Content, Warc

Blog author

The World Federation of Advertisers has been holding its annual conference in Beijing as part of the organisation's Global Advertising Week. The sessions mixed local and international marketers, and presentations in both English and Mandarin. Not everything made it through the translators - one particular reference to a "sausage scandal” drew puzzled looks from the non-Chinese delegates.

There's plenty to write up, and we'll be running a full report on Warc next week. But as a taster, it's worth highlighting some interesting points made by Julia Goldin, global CMO of Revlon.

14 April 2011, 10:54
Local versus international - China's brand battleground

Posted by: David Tiltman, Head of Content, Warc

Blog author

This week Warc is attending the annual Global Advertising Week organised by the World Federation of Advertisers in Beijing. On Tuesday I had the pleasure of moderating part of a MediaCom-sponsored session that provided an overview of the Chinese marketing scene.

As with any conference about China, you can't move for mind-boggling statistics. Here's a few that caught our eye today:

13 April 2011, 09:42
The $15 Million Dollar Woman Cashes In

Posted by: Robert Passikoff, President, Brand Keys, Inc

Blog author

The 2006 offer to Katie Couric to anchor the CBS Evening News came with $15,000,000 a year and the chance to report on the venerable "60 Minutes." It's been reported that it apparently came with a less-than-collegial welcome from Jeff Fager, then "60 Minutes" executive producer.

If you don't remember Ms. Couric's appearances on "60 Minutes," that's not surprising. Her reports haven't even averaged five a year, and Mr. Fager‘s appointment as chairman of CBS News has apparently sent a message to Team Couric that perhaps it was time to move on. And, as the revered Walter Cronkite used to say, "that's the way it was." Ms. Couric and CBS are negotiating when and how to end her 5-year run.

12 April 2011, 17:14
When Packaging Innovation Attacks

Posted by: Brian Hauck, Designer, The Goldstein Group

Blog author

In an industry where change is the norm, thousands of ideas are generated daily… some good, some bad.

A few of these ideas will separate a product from the competition, like the new plastic bottle developed by Pepsi. Sometimes these ideas, similar to what they end up becoming, are just garbage… An example of this would be Del Monte's new individually wrapped banana. These two products could not have been created as a more perfect foil for comparison.

12 April 2011, 16:16
Rivalling his team mates from popular neuroscience. David Eagleman presents his new book on the implicit brain to the marketing community

Posted by: Daniel Mullensiefen, Scientist in Residence, DDB UK

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If a new book with a subtitle such as ‘The Secret Lives of the Brain’ is launched to an  advertising and marketing audience I can feel an involuntary and almost visceral scepticism reflex running through my body. Great, another book out there that tries to capitalise on the current hype around modern neuroscience and the commercial world. And my suspicion is that the author will again use very flowery and metaphorical language to interpret bits of neuroscience that will fit a particular marketing philosophy. Many have done so before and the role of metaphor in these types of publications is either to simplify scientific concepts to a level where the presumed readership is able and willing to follow or to disguise the fact that the author is lacking a thorough understanding of the original research himself (the culprits shall remain anonymous here). 

Well, at least in the case of David Eagleman we don’t need to worry about the science bit. Even though almost a tiny bit too slick and not at all nerdy in his appearance, Eagleman is definitely a proper scientist who understands his trade. He leads a respected neuroscience lab in the US, has tons of scientific publications, many of which are in the top journals of the field. But that is not enough. He is also very active in terms of engaging the public with neuroscientific research and no doubt he is also extremely clever at marketing his scientific expertise to the commercial world.

12 April 2011, 11:08
Online brand building - the emperor's new clothes

Posted by: Left Field

Blog author

At a US conference on the future of communications a week ago I heard those oft-repeated words that increasingly lead me to froth at the mouth, but generally get heads nodding in autonomic acquiescence: "the internet changes everything".

Surely I can't be the only person to regard this as deluded nonsense - or am I? I do not doubt for a moment the huge impact the internet (in a general sense) has had on the marketing of brands, but it most certainly has not changed everything.

06 April 2011, 09:07
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