Posts Tagged ‘Advocacy Insights’

Global trust in advertising has increased according to a new report into trust and engagement launched by Nielsen Research this month. Unfortunately not as much as the trust we have in each other to provide us with unbiased product reviews!

The research indicated that globally 90% of repondents said they trust people somewhat/completely up from 78% in 2007. This compared to 61% for TV advertising (up from 56%) over the same time period.

Views about whether you should trust advertising seem split. In Europe, only 49% said they trust advertising somewhat/completely with 51% saying they don’t trust it much at all. Further evidence if needed that every brand should have an advocacy strategy in place today.


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In the advocacy world, do brand logos need their own catchy names and do these names need to be trademark protected? This is the question raised by Steve Baird in the DuetsBlog.

Steve gives the example of the Nike “swoosh” and McDonalds “Golden arches”, both registered trademarks and both common descriptors of the widely recognised logos.

I guess most brand guardians would prefer us to use the brand name, but if you are dealing with the cool brigade for example, we all know that branding has to be done gently. Then how do you get your potential advocates to describe your property and how do you stop your competitors coming along and hijacking the party?

I remember when I used to look after the “exceedingly good cake brand” Mr Kipling. Not necessarily a cool brand I admit, but boy did we have difficulty registering the tag line, something only achieved once we had demonstrated how many millions of pounds we had spent behind it over the years. This will become an even more interesting challenge in the advocacy world….I guess Steve and his trademark partners are looking on in glee!

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Last summer I wrote a post about a Visitor book I had read whilst on holiday in Spain. I went on to remark that the concept could be more widely adopted in the brand world (a remark that resulted in an appearance by yours truely on Radio 4).  

Tonight I came across a concept that was first muted at  the Social Innovation Camp last summer – a Barcode Wikipedia. The thought behind it is that rather like Visitor books, you share your thoughts about a product with your fellow consumers. In this case however, to receive your insights, your fellow consumers would scan the barcodes of products they were thinking of buying using (possibly) a Mobile phone.

Wow..what an amazing concept. I really hope this gets picked up. Apparently Consumer Focus Labs have some interest in championing it. I must confess I hadn’t heard of Consumer Focus …. a big confession given that it’s the statutory body set up to be the voice on the consumer to brand owners. Consumer Focus Labs role (so it’s website says) is to build on-line tools to make people’s dealings with companies fairer, save them money, or keep them informed about products or issues that are important to them.

This is definitely one to watch. I’m just amazed Google haven’t done it already.

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Mobile Internet is getting ready for take off and there are a number of interesting applications being discussed this week.

1. The Sunday Times reports that a system called Shomas is being tested that combines the best of the web and the best of a true retail experience. You type into your mobile what you are looking to purchase and the system let’s you know which of the shops nearby stocks the item and who is offering the best deals. As I have said before on this blog, it is only a matter of time before you will be able to scan barcodes with your mobile and get independant ratings on any product. Welcome to the world of people power!

2. Ford have launched a campaign across Europe call “Find it”aimed at 20 somethings. By pointing your Nokia phone at a small square patch, a 3D Ka appears on your screen.  Great play value and something that will get people talking.

3. The New York Times, who interestingly mention that Google has just put in place an early warning system for Flu outbreaks (it monitors searches for Flu symptoms), also discussed the way GPS systems in phones are being used to monitor and improve workplace collaboration – it’s good to talk apparently rather than type away on a keyboard!  A bit Big Brotherish, but phone GPS has so many empowering applications that I guess this is just the start.

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A fantastic presentation by my friend Paul Marsden offering a comprehensive introduction to the digital PR world we operate in today. It’s a must read for every client and PR executive.

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Brand Republic wrote about an interesting piece of research this morning suggesting that PR could benefit from the recession. The research was conducted before the worst of the credit crunch, but is backed up by other studies that suggest that as consumer confidence decreases, the power and influence of traditional PR channels (editorial, word of mouth, expert opinion etc.) will grow and with it budget allocations.

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An interesting piece of research we released this week…

Research released this week by Weber Shandwick at Marketing Magazine’s one-day conference The Brands Assembly in London, indicates that the credit crunch is resulting in consumers relying more heavily on independent third party advice, such as friends, family or specialist magazines, when making purchase decisions.

The study, carried out by KRC Research amongst 1,000 adults, indicated that nearly a half of UK adults (45%) said that they were more likely to seek out the opinion of friends or perceived experts today when making large purchase decisions, than they were a year ago. Richard Moss, EVP European Brand Programmes at Weber Shandwick commented “As consumer confidence decreases, the perceived risk associated with any purchase grows.  Utilising the first hand experience of trusted friends and family or other perceived experts is a simple way of reducing that risk”.

The study also asked the sample whether they would be more likely to read online customer reviews or specialist magazines today compared to a year ago. Nearly two thirds of UK adults (63%) agreed with this statement.

Moss continued “These findings have important implications for brands. As consumer confidence decreases there is now a real need for brand owners to refocus their marketing efforts behind those communication channels that have most influence on consumer decision making. Brand Advocacy channels, such as friends, experts, journalists and social communities are some of the most influential”.

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