Tag Archives: marketing

“Haven’t I seen you somewhere before?” Startle your audience with a change of main medium


Old Product Development often involves re-formulating, re-pricing and/or re-positioning a tired, too-familiar brand.

But a radical change of media strategy can startle both existing and potential consumers into refreshed awareness.

You can have too much awareness, of course. Stick rigidly with that well-worn advertising saw – “Don’t Change Anything!” – and one day familiarity will breed brand-blindness. As though afflicted by some nasty degeneration of the retina, your prospects’ eyes will glaze over when the ads. appear for the zillionth time in the same old media spots.

That needn’t happen. The shock of a new media environment can re-focus a brand’s image. It needn’t be a long-term move … even a temporary jolt can produce a stand-out effect which will raise the brand’s profile significantly by injecting the element of surprise.

In the world of literature, the Russian Formalists called this technique “ostranenie“. By presenting common things in an unusual way – by ‘defamiliarising’ the too-familiar – perceptions can be enhanced.

The alternative media option selected will of course need to be appropriate to the target audience – and will effectively be promoted from secondary to primary position in the hierarchy.

But by selecting an unusual main medium to re-energise recognition of your brand, you’ll ensure that customers see it in a whole new light.



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Sainsbury’s finds a safer place to play with its sponsorship money


Sainsbury‘s has signed up as sponsor of ITV‘s Showcase Drama package, in a deal reportedly worth in excess of £10m.

The deal follows hot on the heels of their announcement last month of the early termination of their contract with British Athletics – there was a mid-term break clause that allowed them to do that.

The real world can sometimes be a dangerous place for sponsors to play. Sainsbury’s denied any connection between the current doping scandal which is tarnishing the reputation of a sport which had seemed so spotless and inspirational in the period immediately following the London Olympics.

And in any case they’d perhaps needed to impose some kind of Osbornian cuts on marketing expenditure following poor trading figures announced last May – their first full-year loss for ten years.

So, after the Games, the play’s the thing that Sainsbury’s will focus on.

Television drama is a lot more predictable than sport. Actors always stick to the script.



Image credit: Dave Croker [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

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Filed under Sponsorship