Case Study: Starbucks Social Media Marketing Strategy

With more than 17000 Starbucks stores in the world, spanning throughout 49 countries , and with significantly higher prices than the market average, the Starbucks enterprise is a tale of success, and a direct result of a genius social marketing and branding strategy. At the core of the business their signature fresh, dark-roasted, full-flavored coffee brews and beans consorting with specialty teas and blended beverages, the special ambiance, its principles and its sense of connection and community; it’s all about creating the ‘Starbucks Experience’, which is the soul of the business, a place to gather, talk and enjoy the allures of their savory brews, a ‘Third Place’ in people’s lives between home and work, for customers to feel perfectly comfortable and imbued with familiarity. Connecting and engaging with the customers is a very important aspect of Starbucks philosophy and one of the reasons why they have been so successful in their social media strategy.

It has been established the company’s conscious efforts towards building a relationship and creating interaction with its customers, but it took the company a few years of trial an error to finally get the formula right and assimilate the prowess of social media. It wasn’t until 2008 that Starbucks finally started to get things right and to follow the path that will endow them with the very impressive feat of becoming the number one brand on Facebook. In 2008 Howard Schultz made a comeback as CEO, refocusing the brand efforts into reigniting the emotional attachment of its customers.… Read the rest

Case Study: Seinfeld Ad Campaign by Amex

American Express is a global, diversified financial services company headquartered in New York. The company is over 150 years old, founded in 1850. It is best known for its credit card, charge card, and travelers check business, but has numerous ancillary operations that are profit centers. On of the key factors in the improvement of American Express in the market is the continual thrust of its brand. Beginning in the 1960s American Express distinguished itself for two decades with several highly acclaimed campaigns. Advertising Age included two 1970s American Express campaigns (‘‘Do You Know Me?’’ and ‘‘Don’t Leave Home without It’’ featuring Karl Malden) on its list of the ‘‘50 Best Commercials.’’ The 1988 print campaign featuring photos of famous card members by Annie Leibovitz was a finalist for the book Advertising’s Ten Best of the Decade 1980–1990.

But in 1990 AT&T Corp. disrupted the general purpose credit card market by introducing its Universal Card with no annual fees. The move adversely affected American Express, which relied on annual fees for much of its revenue, for two reasons. First, American Express was not a credit card but rather a charge card that had to be paid in full monthly, and so it did not earn interest by extending credit. Second, American Express collected on average 3.22 percent of the transaction, making Visa a much more attractive card for merchants to honor, since it charged about half of this percentage. CEO James Robinson III attempted to salvage American Express by turning it into what Time magazine called ‘‘an unwieldy financial supermarket.’’ In 1993 the board of directors replaced Robinson with Harvey Golub, who streamlined the company by severing the brokerage, investment-banking, and life-insurance divisions.… Read the rest

Corporate Branding Case Study: ‘Power of Dreams’ Campaign by Honda

In 2002 Honda Motor Company was the number-three Japanese automobile manufacturer in the world, behind Toyota and Nissan. While Honda’s automobile sales in Japan and the United States were considered strong, sales in the United Kingdom and mainland Europe were thought to be weak, even though automobile production in the United Kingdom had been ongoing for a decade. Further, Honda vehicle sales had been declining in these regions since 1998. In response to these problems Honda hired ad agency Wieden+Kennedy London office to create an advertising campaign that would directly address the issues.

‘‘The Power of Dreams,’’ released in 2002, was an omnipresent campaign in the United Kingdom and beyond, using television, direct mail, radio, posters, press, interactive television, cinema, magazines, motor shows, press launches, dealerships, postcards, beermats (coasters), and even traffic cones. It built upon Honda’s company slogan, ‘‘Yume No Chikara,’’ which was first endorsed in the 1940s by the company’s founder, Soichiro Honda. Translated into English, it meant to ‘‘see’’ one’s dreams. Wieden+Kennedy used this phrase as the basis of its question to consumers: ‘‘Do you believe in the power of dreams?’’ The global campaign, which centered on this tagline, included print and television components starring ASIMO, a humanoid robot developed by Honda. While the ASIMO ads gained widespread recognition, the 2003 television commercial called ‘‘Cog’’ was clearly a pinnacle of the campaign. In a single take with no special effects, more than 85 individual parts of the new Accord interacted in a complicated chain reaction. The spot won 37 advertising awards.… Read the rest

Top Ten Advertising Mantras For Small Business

What will be the best resort for advertising and marketing especially for small scale companies needs to be identified. Here there are the top ten low-cost advertising methods which managers will find very useful.

  1. Creating your own Website: Today, when more and more people are turning internet savvy; for any company to come into the public eye having a company’s website is a must. A research has put forth that seventy percent of potential buyers’ first research about the product or service on the internet before walking to a mall or showroom to buy the product or service. If companies cannot invest money, then there are also free blogs and websites which offer domain names as preferred. Also, remember to market your website or blog by employing means of social media. Social media culture is on a rise, and publicizing about your presence on such platforms can result in potential success.
  2. Brand Tie-ups and Cross Promotions: Hunt for companies that pitch to similar customer base and their product or service could compliment with that of yours. This will result in sharing the customer base thus widening the number of potential customers. Also, creating a marketing campaign on a share basis could be mutually beneficial to both the companies.
  3. Conduct Seminars over different Mediums: Yes, seminars no longer connote that meetings have to take place in person. There are different mediums over which such seminars can be held. Those which take place over the internet are referred to as Webinars. This is a much cost effective way as all the participants are attending the seminar from the convenience of their homes or offices.
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Customer Segmentation Analysis

The buying behavior of customers will vary by segment, such as the elderly, the affluent, where people live, and so forth. If you want to understand how to compete, then you should understand the purchasing processes – who is buying what from whom? You can start your analysis with various customer segments and then test each hypothesis to see if this segment is buying the product or service. This type of analysis, referred to as customer segmentation analysis, helps the organization focus on those segments that provide the greatest growth.  Customer segmentation analysis identifies and profiles promising target customers so that you can reach them with optimal marketing mixes.

All consumer markets contain many subgroups of customers and prospects who behave differently, have different hopes, fears and aspirations, and have different purchasing behaviors. Segmentation enables a company to craft individual marketing plans that hit the “hot buttons” of each consumer group. Segmentation is the practice of dividing consumers into groups of individuals that are similar in specific ways relevant to marketing, such as age, gender, interests and spending habits. The goal of segmenting customers is to decide how to relate to customers in each segment in order to maximize the value of each customer to the businessArmed with a better understanding of their customer base, marketing managers can design targeted marketing and service campaigns to reach specific customer segments with offers that are suited to their needs and preferences. The goal of customer segmentation analysis is to identify groups in which the customers are as much  alike as possible—and greatly differentiated from customers in other segments.… Read the rest

Customer Journey Mapping

Every time a customer contacts the organisation or its representatives, there is an opportunity for a customer “moment of truth”. These “moments of truth” are opportunities for the organisation to make a good or bad impression on the customer and are key moments in the customer journey.

This concept of ‘moment of truth’ was first introduced by Jan Carlzon, the former president of Scandinavian Airlines, in his 1986 book titled Moments of Truth. Carlzon defines the moment of truth in business as:

“Anytime a customer comes into contact with any aspect of a business, how ever remote, is an opportunity to form an impression.”

Customer journey mapping builds on this concept by providing a strategic tool to start the process of ensuring that every interaction with your organisation is a positive one.

Customer journey mapping is a tool organizations use to help them see what their customers truly want – the real moment’s of truth and the ways in which customers go about achieving their needs. It is the process of tracking and describing all the experiences that customers have as they encounter a service or set of services, taking into account not only what happens to them, but also their responses to their experiences. It recognizes moments of potential failure or bad customer experiences to help define where products or services need to be strengthened. By identifying those steps in your customer experience with the greatest impact, your journey map becomes a centerpiece of your customer experience planning process. Used well, it can reveal opportunities for improvement and innovation in that experience, acting as a strategic tool to ensure every interaction with the customer is as positive as it can be.… Read the rest