Wednesday, December 31, 2008

╠ Free Ride ╣

Most of you probably noticed the free metropolitan travel that happened on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Now I'm not sure about the rest of you but this was completely under advertised in my opinion. I only found out when going to my station in the morning when there is actually staff and as I was going to validate my ticket I was told there was free travel today. I was skeptical but went along with it. I later saw the small A4 sheet posted at each station clearly made in Microsoft Word that stated that there was free travel. Personally I didn't think that much of it, particularly in the morning it was more of an inconvenience to not validate due to my uneasyness and disbelief of it truly being free travel. Also later in the day ticket inspectors haunted every train I was on, not checking tickets obviously but still unnerving everyone else. I'm not sure if they were collecting statistics or what but it seemed plenty unnecessary.

This was a huge opportunity for Connex to get some good cred and they seem to have not taken it at all. Not having to pay for a day could make you feel so much better about them but the constant presence of inspectors on the train just makes you not able to forget how bad Connex is.

Sure they were forced into it by the travel minister but there was still so much more they could have done to improve the brand image in commuters minds. I consider this to be a huge chance wasted. They get another with New Years also being free travel but we'll have to wait to see if it's actually any better.

Monday, December 29, 2008

╠ Free Gruen ╣

Recently Zac Martin commented on a certain tool which he learned about from Simon Small's blog. This tool allows you to calculate the value of your blog. Zac Martin wracked up over 20,000 while Simon was able to get a cool $1,700. Thinking that I'd be able to give myself a little confidence booster by being worth something, I decided to try this on myself.

The Gruen Transfer ranked in at being worth a whopping $0.00. After turning green, growing to twice my height and going on a rampage I decided that I should look at this a little closer. The tool utilizes Technorati ratings of which I'd basically ignored. I've been doing things to gain popularity for years on the internet to no avail and simply figured it was the same and perhaps even a fad...however this does not seem to be the case. It's a smart system and currently appears to be ruling the blogging world with an iron fist.

The way it works is every time you get linked posted withing the last six months in a blog you get an authority point. So Simon, Zac as well as the tool should all get a point for this blog. This changes things from what I originally thought. Getting high ranks isn't directly correlated to success, what matters is making blogs that will be talked about.

One thing I wonder is whether karma plays a large role in this. Julian Cole often posts about other blogs and often mentions newcomers as well giving them what is usually their first technorati hits and via this tool his blog ranked over $40,000.

The interesting thing that Technorati reates is a need to utilize your blog well from a marketing perspective. You have to build relationships with your readers in order to be successful. I quite like the idea that not only am I doing a marketing blog but I also have to perform marketing type activites with it in order to achieve success.

If there are any potential bloggers out there or early starters I recommend you look into this stuff early. It adds a new level to your blog and will save you from playing the wrong game for six months like I have been.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

╠ Save the World, Embrace Christmas Reprise ╣

Most of you probably remember my AniBlog about the Global Economic Crisis. In this video I mentioned the way to solving this problem was simply to spend more and therefore embracing Christmas was the answer.

Now this is not entirely theory at least. If inflation goes up that doesn't mean all of a sudden problem solved. People simply spending money isn't going to fix the problems of the world such as the banks constant battle to stay afloat and the stock markets huge slump.

All inflation does is mask the problem to a degree. However there are follow on effects that work with this. People spending more means businesses are more successful and end up with more money. This means they don't have to fire people and the recession cycle hopefully begins to dissipate. So it solves a conventional recession. The fault with this though is if it happens it may not fix what we currently have. There are so many large businesses on breaking point so spending more may not be able to outweigh the losses if we were to say lose a bank, even if it weren't a big four bank.

So in essence it should help and certainly shouldn't hurt and when the alternative is to invest it in the stock market and lose money or in a fixed interest account and get a measly few percent then why not go for it! Spend, spend spend!

Friday, December 19, 2008

╠ S*** Shirts ╣

More and more recently I have started noticing shirts that bend the border on what is appropriate or not. Now I'm no fan of swearing so I've particularly taken notice or swear words slipping in more and more. The example to the left involving the S word. In fact the S word is probably the most common word I see on T-shirts these days.

Today I also noticed a shirt "Fu_k to live, live to Fu_k" as if blanking one letter changed anything.

I must admit in this day and age with words like this expressed so freely I really don't see myself if I were a child able to grow up to be the same person I am today.

It also raises an interesting point though. With self expression able to include such things, how long is it until brand expression can get away with the same. Censorship seems to be crazy on organizations however it almost seems unfair that individuals can get away with these sorts of tshirts on a daily basis while campaigns such as 'Where the Bloody hell are you?' and Ultimate care down there for your beaver are considered too risque.

This may be beyond my grounds to say but personally I think this all stems from enjoying picking on the person who can't fight back. If someone tells someone wearing one of these shirts it's rude theres a large chance it could go down very not well. However picking on organizations is different because while they are legal entities they cannot fight for themselves. I think people are simply justifying to themself that when they pick on organizations they aren't actually hurting anyones emotions and therefore don't feel bad, in fact they feel better because they can claim they're making the world a better place.

I'm not sayng all of a sudden ads should be able to swear but I just think we need more equality around. Why can people parade around flaunting swear words while organizations have to be perfect gentleman?

Monday, December 15, 2008

╠ AniBlog - The Global Economic Crisis for Dummies╣

So here I am with another one of these things. This time trying to share my knowledge of economics towards the global economic crisis.

As far as quality goes with this AniBlog I tried something different here with trying to explain something with both sound and image at the same time which I think didn't work because at around the 30sec mark you either aren't paying attention to whats on the screen or have completely lost what I'm saying.

However this time at least I was able to keep it below 2 minutes so the bursts are getting shorter and shorter. As usual any recommendations or comments are welcome

The Script: (Not kept to 100%)

So stock markets are crashing, banks are being stingy, dollars are plummeting and America as usual is to blame. Now most of you probably know the housing loan issue that caused all of this but very has been said about the economic factors that contribute to a recession.

Now the main part of importance is inflation. An economies inflation is the percentage increase on what a country spends each year. In a perfect world this stays still at a low rate. However this usually isn't possible because when people negotiate things such as wage and price increases they usually increase by inflation and then because they're greedy and wish to grow tap some on top of it therefore inadvertantly increasing inflation.

Left to its own will this usually continues to rise, however the Reserve Bank of Australia tries to keep this at around two to three percent. They do this by changing interest rates. Raising interest rates means people are more inclined to save reducing inflation, lowering them obviously does the opposite.

What makes a recession is when inflation drops over an extended period. This means people aren't spending at the increasing rate that they were expected to, this unfortunately leads to unemployment increasing which means that those people aren't spending their wages which negatively affects inflation causing the horrible cycle that is a recession

So basically thanks to how interconnected the world is when a huge economy like America gets the sniffles, the rest of the world catches a cold.

The solution to this problem is relatively simple, if a country spending less overall puts them into recession, the solution is simply to spend more. So if you're listening to this here's my recommendation. Save the world, Embrace Christmas! If you run out of people to buy gifts for I'm sure you could find it in your heart to think of a Uni Student blogger who is deserving

Friday, December 12, 2008

╠ Do Grades Matter? ╣

Zac Martin made a post a while ago back when everyone elses grades were released about failing a law subject and whether that had any effect on anything. Well today Melbourne Uni finally got their results and I managed to get no better than a pass for my market research class. In fact I got 3 passes and one H2B in one class I hated. I seem to have a habit of flunking the classes I love.

So my question is does this stuff actually matter? I spend all of my spare time volunteering for the Melbourne Anime Festival, working or doing stuff for this blog as opposed to studying. This seems to reflect in my scores.

Can I argue this or is there simply a level of low scoring that means people will stop looking at you? Should I actually really aim for doing as much outside uni as possible or actually aim to do well in my classes ^^;

Thursday, December 11, 2008

╠ AniBlog - The Talk of Techxperts ╣

With the previous semi success of my previous AniBlog I decided to try again and in this second try improve the faults of the previous. The main fault of the first was the sound quality which for the most parts I have improved on. There are a few faults in my reading the script but thats a minor think to fix for the future.

This installment is on Dick Smith's rebranding and their new slogan 'Talk to the techxperts' which I have some insight as a personal worker of theirs. Anyway if you have any comments at all let me know and I'll try and fix it should I do any more of these.

Script for the video:
(Not 100% accurate due to adlibs)

A competitive advantage is something that one organization does that gives it an edge on it's opposition. To dumb it down it's usually the reason you purchase one item over another, this can be but isn't limited to being the cheapest, the best or simply has a particular feature you're after.

Something I'd like to bring attention to is claiming a competitive advantage that may not actually exist. As most of you probably don't know Dick Smith is currently going through a rebranding excersize. One part of this was their new slogan 'Talk to the Techsperts'. Basically claiming they have allpowerfully knowledge of anything techological.

Now I am unfortunately as a worker of theirs meant to be a so called techspert. Although when it comes to certain technology I'm as knowledgeable as a cave dwellers pet goldfish and therefore feel it necessary to poke at the flaws in this apparent advantage of ours.

It all stems from the hiring process. Basically us and all our competitors hire from what is majoritvely a pool of uni students looking for a part time job to fund their school supplies. So first of all we're no better, but wait it gets worse. Take JB Hifi as the main competitor. They offer better commission, better discount and aren't required to know stuff or even approach customers...although it may just be me they don't approach thanks to the countless hours I spent in their stores making use of their free guitar hero. But overall the point is that it is a better deal to work there and therefore they should have their pick of applicants first putting the Dick Smith hires at the bottom of the barrel.

This would all be fine and well if we received special training...however we don't. There's usually one optional far from exhaustive online training for one specific program about every month which is relatively useless when you consider the amount of stock we have.

So to summarize...we aren't techsperts, we're workers, just like those you'll find anywhere else yet somehow we're able to claim a competitive advantage about this. In fact it seems little more than a trick at consumers expense..

However for their own sake hope consumers are becoming smart enough to see through ortherwise they will face my techspert way of responding to hard questions with a blank stare!

Monday, December 8, 2008

╠ Gruen Vs Zero Punc ╣

My animblog appeared to be a rather large success. People seemed to like it and I think I shall continue on. However one change I may try is to shorten the videos to about 1 minute length shots. Here's hoping it still is spiffiriffic.

However it has become apparent that with a lot of people all they see is a Zero Punctuation Clone. When deciding how to do this I thought about what style to use. chose to work on a previous style I had developed in that of a simple character with just balls for hands.

On the right is my earlier work in this style in 3D. Since I had done this before I perceived it to simply be a style as opposed to something there was a monopoly on.
I was hoping people would simply consider the Zero Punc videos to be a style and therefore not a negative when it is utilized inside a different field. However reading responses it appears I am wrong.

Personally since this is the style I first got into 3D with and now am branching into using it for my blog I'm quite attached. I'm confident with it and believe this is the way I can make the aniblog work best.

However the problem I am facing is that I do not want to be perceived as stealing views via unofficial association. I already seem to have that via the Gruen title so I don't want it more.

So I suppose the question I am posing is that does Zero Punctuation have a monopoly on this style and therefore should I change in order to follow my own path or can I continue on as I want to without risking enraging a fanbase? Any insight is welcome so let me know how you feel.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

╠ AniBlog - Of Downloadable Content and Stock Limitations ╣

In my previous post I said I was going to trial animating a blog post and well I suceeded. I wasn't expecting it to be done so quickly but turns out when you know what you're doing the whole process is quite quick and for the most part was completed over the weekend.

Any insight on how you think I did is really wanted. One thing I have noticed is that I should probably get into it a bit more because my voice is a bit dry. I may also have to invest in a microphone and not just use the computer. So yeah any opinion is good ^^

Saturday, December 6, 2008

╠ Augmenting a blog ╣

As I continue writing this blog I am ever in search of something to make it better, to make it stand out. In all my thinking of this I have come upon two ideas. If any of you could tell me what you think of either or even if you have any recommendations on how to do either that would be great.

Idea the first: Twitter post leading to blog

A lot of successful blogs I've seen do so by simply having a few lines of insight and then leaving it to you to fill in the gaps and it works because this encourages discussion. However I can't do this because I always have more to say and can't really hold myself back.

So my idea here is to have two posts for every post. One would be a short post, maybe five lines tops introducing and heavily summarizing what I was trying to get across. The second would be a longwinded post like my normal variety. THe smaller one would be the one to show up and the latter would simply be something you could click 'read on' to get to my full thoughts on the matter.

Now I personally have no idea if there is a way to do this without being sort of fiddly with my posts so if anyone knows how to do it that would be great.

Idea the Second: AniBlog

Recently I have discovered people posting videos of themselves saying what they wish to get across and because you are simply listening instead of reading it's easier to get more across. Personally I think there is a lot in this however I have no interest of putting my mug on youtube...more than it may already be at least. I believe while watching someone talk is a sort of visual benefit on previous options. However I think if I were instead to make simple animations it may be overall more stimulating.

This will obviously take a bit of effort on my part but I wish to at least test it out. So I'm going to trial it with making a video of the blog I did previously on downloadable content. It may be good...or it may crash and burn. The important thing when it comes to these sort of things is to take risks and especially at this time in my blog there's not exactly a world of things to lose.

The animation style will be very simple and will be using the spiffy version of Tannie as can be viewed above.

In conclusion

So this is what I'm looking into at the moment so let me know what you think of it and also if you have any other recommendations for blogging let me know because I would like to get this thing to be a bit successful.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

╠ Products without a stock limit ╣

Something that has been popping up more and more recently with the growth of internet speed, download limits as well as hard drive capacity is downloadable ocntent. The most prominent of these is in gaming consoles and portable devices such as ipods. There is a lot of opportunity for growth here because unlike other products, these are basically limitless when it comes to stock. Take a song for example, on average it's about 5mb on a computer and that can be given out a thousand, a million or as many timea as someone wants because all you get is a copy made at point of sale. Therefore you eliminate the need of a physical store or extended physical storage.

I see this technology being the future. Now this is very far off so I hope it's not too hard to understand. Computers at the moment have limited output, you have sound, visuals and if you have a printer you have that output option too. Imagine if this were to grow. Say you were feeling hungry. In the future if we were able to harness the power of atoms, we could store the data of a product on a computer down to the atomic level, then use a device to create an object with that atom structure and bingo you could have your own perfect pizza down to the last atom on hand without having to wait for all those normal cooking and delivery times. Very far fetched technology but I think achievable considering the technology we have now compared to decades ago.

However at the moment I think this technology isn't being utilized. People seem happy to just put something up and think that people will pay for it without any price fluctuations. Which by current standards make sense since most price fluctuations are caused by the limitations of stock eg. rare(low stock) = expensive or overstock = less expensive to clear before it becomes obsolete. So there is no normal type reason for this...however when you think of it this is heavily limiting on demand.

One thing I've found that I personally think when looking at downloadable content is simply that it will be there tomorrow. Most don't have a time in which they will expire and they appear to not have a changing cost meaning you never get a 'good deal'. This limits impulse buying. You have forever to think about it and the more time you have the more time you have to consider why you don't need it. Since most of the DLC at the moment is entertainment items you can easily justify not buying it.

So I believe there needs to be stock like limits placed onto DLC. Have sales for limited time or limiting quantity. Whilst I'm not for forcing people to buy things they don't want but in reality you need you have an option of impulse to increase sales. It could actually be the best way to speed up the progression into my perceived distant future ^^

Sunday, November 30, 2008

╠ Hidden Augmentations ╣

I don't know what it is but I've had a little hard time thinking of what to write on recently due to all my exam and work worries. So apologies for all those who aren't such a fan of video game references but I have discovered yet another interesting marketing factor.

One thing about video games, more specifically Japanese RPG's is that when you get involved in it you discover what are known as 'fangirls'. If you're not scared you should be. What these fangirls usually do is pair the male characters with other male characters and either write fanfictions on them or draw images of it. It can honestly get quite disturbing and untrue to the character.

When I was younger I though they were simply creating something out of nothing and I thought it would be something anyone at the developers would want to quash this. However I have since realized they are a lot smarter. When they make games they make it so that there is enough there for these things to exist, however not there enough in order to make any other fan able to deny it.

I found this to be an interesting development, having something of value in a product that isn't exactly there meaning it cannot be a negative for others. I struggled to find a better example than video games so sorry to bring it back to that again. If anyone has any other examples let me know because I find it to be quite interesting.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

╠ Product Placement in Video Games ╣

Being the Guitar Hero nerd I am I've already got the World Tour version. One thing that caught my eye was the product placement and believe me when I say it is full of it. However I can break it down into two sorts, relevant and irrelevant.

An example of relevant advertising would be the Gibson Guitars. This is good because it allows players to play the guitars they would want to play if they really did play. This makes you feel better about the overall game and also advertises the available guitars to the users.

The irrelevant type however I believe is quite a problem with Video Games and movies because it cheapens both brands. An example in Guitar Hero is in the Phi Psi Kappa venue. Whenever you play a gig for the final song the venue somehow changes, something usually explodes or something magical happens. It's usually quite spiffy so for the first time seeing it your eyes are usually intently on the screen. However at this particular bar there is a distinctly noticeable pan across a KFC bucket. You could argue why it was there but it is still clearly something that is predominantly a revenue raiser.

This is a game I feel proud to own and to have as a good group game however every time I get to this point it's so obvious that whoever sees it has to point it out and how dodgy it is. I'm a bit disappointed with KFC's marketing overall from the various TV ads of theirs I have seen recently and this doesn't really make me think any more of it.

Overall this game is a good example of product placement done right but also done wrong.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

╠ My first real marketing gig ╣

Today was the follow up meeting to the Manifest AGM. This was the one in which Manifest chose to give out all of its roles. I managed to gain the role of Branding manager. Now would probably be the time to realize the irony of being brand manager before I do the brand management class however I'm hoping to do the best job I can. Pictured left is currently the manifest logo. It's odd, it's a design that would seem somewhat unsuiting to that of an anime convention...but for the life of me I can't design a better one. It seems somewhat brilliant in its simplicity combined with uniqueness.

None the less I am proud to be breaking into the market and who knows, once all this world conomic crisis stuff clears I may just find myself in a position where I may be able to be paid for this stuff.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

╠ eGames Expo from a marketing perspective ╣

Pictured on the left are my spoils of the weekend at the eGames expo held at the exhibition centre. The speaker and DVD were prizes from contests, the rest were all general type freebies. I also managed to get entry into the event for dressing up as a video game character. Since I was busy this stuff is mostly what simply came in the bag. However everything there is simply for advertising. The prizes were from a Yamaha sponsored Guitar Hero competition and the dvd from the Madman sponsored cosplay(costume) contest.

It is an odd convention because it is mostly advertising. There are a few traders, some competition booths but for the most part it's simply advertising.

The interesting thing is that most people who aren't dressed up pay $18 a day to basically be advertised to. 1000's a day come here to simply be advertized to. This is something that quite a few industries have, and it is an interesting avenue of advertising...advertising to those who are actually willing to pay to see what you have coming up. It's interesting looking at the world with a marketing brain, and who a few years I may be working in the marketing department of one of these's hoping.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

╠ Marketing, Back Alley Style╣

Zac Martin at Pigs Don't Fly commented on his blog about University Education being a bit lacking in this new age of marketing. Universities appear to be a step behind in marketing in particular. Especially with online activity they don't really dwell into the social marketing side of things which is interaction based marketing.

So if Universities aren't teaching how to market relationship style, who are?

This brings me back to a few weeks ago when I was sitting down at Melbourne Central. A stranger came along and asked if he could have a seat. We said it was okay, it seemed an innocent enough request. However upon sitting down he broke into a story about how he's homeless and just looking for some money for the backpackers. He may have just had me if when he hadn't stated the exact amount he needed and then when proving some other nice people out there trusted him pulled out more than what he needed by accident. However still an interest improvement on the normal smokey voiced 'Can I have some bucks for a metcard *Smoke induced coughing fit*'.

So if these homeless people are learning how to build relationships and other advanced marketing activities...why aren't we?

Friday, November 7, 2008

╠ The Value of Slurpee Quests╣

As most of you are probably aware, the 7-11's of Australia are offering free small slurpee's today. In order to claim your free slurpee you must rock up to a 7eleven, today Nov 7th, between 7am and 11PM and say 'Happy 7 11 Day' thus entitling yourself to a free small slurpee.

This event is a prefect example of how effective the intangible elements of a transaction are. Whilst they're giving out free slurpees by the motherload, it is overall quite effective. The value that can be drawn from this transaction are:
  • Bringing people into the store when they otherwise may have not(Attachment opportunity)
  • Building brand loyalty. (Often freebies are smaller servings than anything you can find in store so by giving out something decent sized you are surpassing expectations leading to brand loyalty. Higher than supermarket priced convenience stores usually give you a feeling of compromise for spending more so to actually have positive brand image is a very good competitive advantage.
  • Possible introduction to Slurpees leading to addiction
  • Creating a day dedicated to the brand. (Having a day devoted to a brand works in itself is an incredibly brand building exercise. Looking at the calender and instantly thinking oh 7-11 day is unique advertising that does not have a direct cost to uphold once established)
  • Discussion raised by the event. (As far as I'm aware despite not being advertised by 7-11 themself it is pretty much everywhere. I have been invited on facebook to the event at least twice, had the topic appear on forums I am a regular on, already today I have been asked on MSN twice whether I have gotten a free slurpee and here I am blogging about it)
When you weigh up this value compared to the meager amount of slurpee lost in free small slurpee's then all of a sudden it seems worth it...perhaps less in the case of those that go on the 27 CBD slurpee shlep but for the most part an overall very effective campaign that no longer seems to need an advertising expense...only some free slurpee goo.

So if you're reading this today try and get to a 7-11 before 11PM tonight and enjoy what appears to be easily a mutually beneficial transaction between consumer and vender.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

╠ Comic - Save The Sensibles ╣

Once again i decided to try something a little bit different with this comic. Overall I think the new style sort of works, however as usual I'd love some other opinions on it to see if anyone shares my sentiments.


I hope you enjoyed this comic and as usual comments are welcome.

Monday, November 3, 2008

╠ Aliases and Equity ╣

So I've just gotten back from the Melbourne Beersphere as organized by Julian Cole to gather Marketing bloggers from Melbourne together and what's the first thing I do when I get home...BLOG!

Before heading to the Beersphere amongst all the nerves of meeting people so much further along my field of interest than I am, I also contemplated who exactly I should be, so to speak. Should I introduce myself by Michael, or by my alias Tannie? Being from the country I grew up there using Michael since it was my real name, however after moving to Melbourne and getting involved in manifest via its forums I've come to be known as Tannie in Melbourne.

It was an odd contemplation because since I've lived here the past few years and apart from my old school friends, most of my closest friends call me by Tannie it is probably the name I am most fond of. However in essence it is a lie not being my true name or even having a clear connection to it.

Overall I decided to use Michael since I believed this was something that could aid my future and therefore all of the brand equity that I can gain for being in such a loop should go to the name I shall use for any jobs I apply for via conventional means. However this all brings me to the point of are aliases worth it in such a sitatuation I have arrived at. I'm looking to be convenor of Manifest under the alias Tannie, yet still have to follow the normal worldly process and live the rest of my life under my real name. In essence I am splitting any brand equity that could be linked to myself in half by having two names.

It didn't overly matter in the end as Julian introduced me as Tannie anyway with correct pronunciation which is something some of my closest friends still don't get. This lead to minor confusion but was quickly resolved. However this day really got me to thinking about the worth of aliases when it comes to a situation where you may be building a repoir for yourself.

The question that I pose to all of you is whether there is actually any room for aliases when you are trying to build a professionally equitable image for yourself or whether they will simply get in the way and divide your worth?

PS: Next time I think I will just stick to the beer at the beerspheres ^^

Saturday, November 1, 2008

╠ Spring Valley - Save Your Sensible ╣

This is an ad campaign I find to be particularly interesting. I must admit that at first I sort of didn't like the idea of it overall. I found the sensible's to be incredibly ugly things, especially the one below.

I mean they seem to be going for a cute sort of thing...and yet it has horns...well to each his own I suppose. However despite my early impression it was the following ad that won me over.

I think this initial dislike sort of was their plan. From the get go they knew it would be a huge long lasting campaign so they used the initial campaign to paint the sensibles as not exactly the most loveable thing.

The reason they did this can be found in the first video I posted in order to encourage the lost sensible part of the story they have built up. So it shows them as less than super in order to make you feel like your sensible needs to be worked on.

If you go to the site you can 'find' your sensible which basically involves putting in your name and then getting a sensible of your own to take care of. It's a very simple application but you can add it to facebook, pick it up, throw it around or even slap it.

When you first get it your sensible is quite worse for ware, however there is a spring valley bottle in the corner and if you click on it your sensible takes a drink, changes to a healthier colour and is all of a sudden a lot better seeming.

It's a very basic application and I probably won't open it again however it was amusing at the time but it is a plus because it encourages direct interraction with the brand.

Overall this is a very good campaign in my opinion, it may just be me being biased because this all started off with a Hitchiker's guide to the galaxy style intro that got me interested however I have bought into the idea that I could just have a sensible and I'm sure others have too.

Once you buy into it even a little and see that little drink having such a positive effect on the sensible you buy into the fact that drinking a spring valley drink will help you make better decisions overall.

My only real criticism of this campaign is that while the spring valley drinks are getting a good boost it is sort of unclear on just what exactly they have on offer. I believe the drinks lack enough differentiation. All that is shown in these adds are a relatively generic bottle shape with just a logo on it. I believe it has a lot of power however when it comes down to the what to buy option when you want a juice or whatever it doesn't stand out well enough. For example I have tried Spring Valley's smart water which is their entrant into the vitamin drink market and I didn't actually realize it was linked to this campaign at all.

I hope you enjoyed this breakdown and as usual any comments are appreciated. If you have any ideas for ads to break down give me a buzz because I could use a few more to add to a poll. Go forth and find your sensibles!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

╠ Comic - Some things aren't foldable╣

Despite having exams as well as other things draining on my time I can't seem to help but be drawn in to do more Gruen stuff. So without further ado here's the comic for the Vodafone breakdown.

Overall I'm sort of at a loss with a few of my comics because I'm not sure if I'm making them in order to be just humourous or wheather I should be aiming to get a bit of marking stuff in there. I'll probably look into it a bit more psot exams but if any of you have input that would be good.

Also since I now am starting to have a few comics I've made a list of all of the ad breakdowns and their respective comics. You can find it in the 1988 post. I'll probably add it as a link on the main page after exams as well.

As usual I hope you all got some enjoyment out of this and comments are always welcome.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

╠Insight - Tivo, Do people really just hate ads?╣

As some of you may know I work part time at Dick Smith in order to fund part of my university lifestyle. Today I made it to work and we had a video about Tivo set up. For those of you who don't know what Tivo is, you obviously haven't seen enough american TV shows. It's basically a high powered hard drive recorder. The current Aus model has 2 HD tuners built in and is basically built in order for you to pick a show you like and then Tivo records it for you. Tivo has access to guides so it can actually make sure that it tapes your show even if it is shifted to a different day. Handy yes, worth $700...well that's questionable.

The thing about the American Tivo that made it so successful as far as I've heard is its ability to cut out the ads. Meaning if you select a season pass to a show, by the time the final show airs on TV you basically have a bluray quality series of that show, much higher quality than those DVD series that we can pay large amounts for or if movies are more your thing then boom, it's yours as soon as it airs ad free. So from this you have a shot at two very large markets, television advertising and DVD sales.

The interesting thing about Australian Tivo is that it lacks this ad skipping feature due to our laws regarding advertising. Without this it is still a very smart and powerful box...however this all should lead to an interesting point now because it now will demonstrate just the value people put on simply avoiding the ads on TV. Tivo took over America, every 'average' american TV family has one. Now ten years after its introduction to Australia will we see the same thing, or does this ad skipping feature simply make Tivo fade into obscurity in the Hard Drive recorder market?

After seeing the ad rerun many times at work this morning I was almost dead set on getting one until I realized the ad skipping feature wasn't included, so I have a personal interest in seeing just how big a factor this feature is to Australia as a whole.

Monday, October 27, 2008

╠ Vodafone - Take your World with you ╣

Finally I am back into the swing on breaking down an actual ad. I always have this curious thing with the fact that I work harder on non-uni stuff during my exam study period. In fact I'm actually posting this during a business law lecture. Aren't I just the most responsible guy around.

Anyway into the knitty gritty. I do like this ad so I am proud that it got chosen to be broken down. The first thing I would like to point out is the sheer inventiveness of it. The visual element of folding all of these items down to pocket size is an accurate visual representation of phones. However something I would like to make specific note to is the folding and not simply compressing. Folding by nature is usually something you do when you wish to take extra care with something so it gives the sense of there being a higher form of care taken with the compressing of these phone abilities making you feel you can trust their abilities a bit more.

The interesting thing I find is that the first thing the man does is pick up his wallet and keys, it is from there he proceeds to take large things from his home that I think most people would consider attractive to take with you. I also believe there would have been some care taken to the order in which they were taken. The map being the first is interesting because no doubt that it is referring to the GPS feature...however a map was chosen over an actual GPS unit. This in itself is smart as well GPS' are relatively new and can in some cases be considered troublesome technology and itself is also portable. So this was addressed by instead having a map which as opposed of simply showing a street, shows the world enforcing a larger sense of freedom. Maps themselves also display all the information they have to show at once and therefore is much more simpler to use than a GPS. It also doesn't discredit the phone as the portable option for everything by being a larger than easily able to be carried around option. Finally it is also a good introduction to the folding theme since it is actually something foldable.

The follow up fold with the computer is where the ad starts to lose its real world element, however to make sure you aren't confused as to what just happened the TV gets folded down almost right after the laptop making sure you've now understood what is happening here. Whilst this lowers the emphasis on the laptop as part of this take with you thing it also works because if the laptop was actually one of the more prominent inputs it would be questioned more and I personally believe that the laptop has the weakest connection because the laptop itself is already portable and whilst most phones can handle some things laptops do, the laptop is always superior, whilst some of the more prominent folds have more improvements rather than just a reduced size Eg. GPS over map and Library options of music.

The music itself is a big one and the moment where he went to walk towards the door and noticed it is an important one, because while the previous gap in fold was good to be short, this one worked with having that little extension because it gives the viewers a chance to acknowledge the TV aspects of a phone before they are bombarded with more. The sheer size of the music collection is in itself an interesting option. In the past phones haven't been able to hold that much so my interpretation of this is that the reason the music collection is so large is to enforce the ability of phones to now hold more, and to in fact in some circumstances hold entire song collections.

The final fold is where things get a little more interesting. If done poorly this could really hurt brand image because it could be treated as complete mistreatment of the woman. The clever thing that I find is the small little kiss that was added before hand. This instantly establishes that it is a love based relationship and sort of makes it ok for him to fold her up. An odd concept but when I think about it, I believe that without it this fold would be looked at with a much more negative light. The addition of her kiss back at the end is also important, not only is this the point where the point that it all comes down to a phone is introduced, but it also while not directly saying, implies that the girl is not angry at being folded up into just a part of a phone. Again perhaps not the most believable intuition but I believe that is what it boils down to.

Another interesting part of this ad is the music. The song is 1922 Blues by Charlie Parr, the lyrics that appear in the ad are the following:

Well I worked all summer couldn't save a cent
I gave all my money to the government
I don't know quite how it got spent
but the banks are coming for my deed though
Man at the mill can't see though
Let me get my feed for free though
Ain't that the way it is

I cut out down a braver road
I traded my stock for a V84
Danced for town down on the floor boards
And the title owed down to me though
That gasoline ain't free through
Just guzzling out my knee bone?
Ain't that the way it is

Whilst these lyrics aren't exactly the most audible, they do however enforce a sort of blue collar, everyday worker sort of image. While most people aren't so poor off, I believe a line such as 'I gave all my money to the government' is one that speaks to a huge audience of possible consumers and endears the ad to them.

The overall way this ad works is first off a 'Wow look at all the stuff they have in phones now', thus making certain consumers consider even if only marginally, the option of getting a new phone. The ad then up until this point has used a few elements to endear the ad to the customer. Therefore once the vodafone logo comes up the overall message they are trying to get across of 'You need a new phone. A vodafone phone.' the consumer is endeared to the ad and may follow that logical connection of view since they could have already been lead to wanting a new phone.

It's been a while since I've done one of these so I hope that this one was okay and not too lengthy ^^; I hope you enjoyed this and as usual any comments are all too welcome.

On the news sides of things I just realized that the email in my profile had a stray letter which was accidentally capitalized and much to my surprise actually having a capital instead of lowercase makes it not work. So if anyone has used that email sorry but your email wouldn't have worked.

Also I was going to add another poll to decide what to do next but I instead have become so enticed by the sensible campaign that my next one will simply be that.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

╠ Reprise - Avoiding Advertising ╣

A few days ago I commented on the Workplace Safety advertisements and my unwillingness to ever fully view one again. All this week workplace safety ads have been playing at prime time and I have been deliberately avoiding them. However this isn't as easy as I had thought. The first time I did it I sort of panicked and stopped the recording I was doing just so I could change the channel...after this I realized the smarter thing was to simple turn off the volume and pay attention to my computer instead. However being so active during ads is an inconvenience and makes it an active thing to watch ads.

The question I am posing at the moment is how effective is an ad that you avoid. The original thought may be that if you're avoiding the message it cannot sink in. However I believe this is not the case. By actively avoiding this ad the process you follow is see the start of the ad, then remember the ad, then make the choice to avoid it.

This method of having the ad run directly through your mind rather than simply watch it on TV is a more direct form of advertising that you've made the obvious choice to be unable to ignore it. Every time the ad comes on it is a direct hit that you can't really ignore. Therefore on an effectiveness per ad shown basis it is much more effective.

While this is effective I disagree with this method. If it were any other group doing this I would probably be growing incredibly angry with each ad I avoid. So my final conclusion for this ad is that it is horribly effective but would not work for any other group as the simple underhandedness of this advertising cannot work without being for such a cause that many people believe in.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

╠ An ad series I don't want to see again ╣

First I must admit I am a coward when it comes to gore etc. The Saw movies unnerved me like you wouldn't believe...well at least the one I watched and then promised to myself to not see any more. So that being said...I haven't actually watched the ad above, I simply watched the start, made sure the Youtube clip had a warning for graphicness and then pasted it here. In fact I doubt it's probably even Australian ^^;

The ad I saw was the bakery one, the girl uses the bread slicer while the boss is on the phone and then boom fingers go flying off. I must admit it did scare me. Before I saw the finger slicing I did however sort of see it coming and then also doubt myself to have been so stupid. However none of that stopped me from being almost horrified.

They are overall quite effective ads, I assume most would see it and then think twice about not asking. However one thing that i believe is that I doubt that if any company were to use this sort of campaign the campaign would be taken down. So by that extent they're abusing their power as a Government approved endeavor. But despite my issue with bending the rules I also believe that it is what they had to do in order to get the message across. People don't want to hear safety messages, so they need to use a punch in the face style approach. It is an important message so most can understand and forgive them for taking such an approach.

This ad campaign adds to the mean world mind view that the media creates by making you think everyone is evil and everything can kill you. To emphasize that to the entire country can be perceived s a negative thing, however while it's saving lives and limbs it's ok...but does this ad open the gate to others to use this sort of advertising?

I stand by that this ad campaign while I do not want to see anything to do with it again will overall do the community good...however if it has opened the gates to other groups using these sorts of methods then I fear the mean world we are heading to.

It may seem ridiculous but there aren't many groups too far from this. Charity groups in particular. If they start using advertising like this to impose guilt onto people to give to help the starving, diseased families in X country and so on, then the viewers with even weaker stomachs than my own may have to boycott TV, not by choice but for mental health.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

╠ Impact Mozilla ╣

A friend notified me today of the impact mozilla marketing competition that Mozilla has set up in order to tackle user retention.

Unfortunately I don't believe I personally have the knowledge, manpower or time to tackle it myself in any successful sense, however since I have a marketing blog I thought why not actually promote it in hopes that it may inspire my marketing peers.

I use firefox myself and am quite fond of it, and of course I love the idea of such a huge thing as Firefox's marketing being handled by Aussies.

So if any of you choose to take up this challenge let me know because I'd love to hear any ideas you have and if you want any opinions on anything you want to run by someone with some marketing insight give me a yell. The link to the comp can be found below.

Impact Mozilla

To those of you interested in when I'll update with the normal ad break down extent of the blog it may still be a little while. I have Uni as well as the Manifest Organizing Committee both taking up my time to extreme extents so I don't have time to do a full breakdown of anything. However I shall still try and get in a few smaller posts here and there to retain interest. Anyway I hope at least someone has a go at this and if so I look frward to seeing the outcomes.

Friday, October 10, 2008

╠Insight - Vitamin Drinks╣

Most of you would know if not have tried a vitamin drink. These items are truly a great representation of the power marketing can have. They have successfully invaded and planted themselves places inside the drinks cabinets of the majority of vendors I have seen, and when your competition includes all of coke's, Schweppes' and many others plethora of different styles of drink you have yourself something to be proud of.

What I like most about it is that in essence all you have here is cordial with a dib of this vitamin and a dab of that one. I admit I was hooked for a period of time. I'd find whatever opportunity I could to buy one if it was reasonably priced. So much so that my craving for cheap varieties lead me to a store that sold them for $2.50 a bottle of Nutrient water which beats the average price by about a dollar. It was at this point I started to try every flavour and begun noticing the nutrient tables. To my surprise I found that I wasn't actually drinking pure nutrients...I was just drinking something that managed to have a couple of milligrams of a handful of selected vitamins. Being the stingy individual I am I decided to just go out and buy a pack of those Multivitamins, $15 and I get 60 days of much higher percentages of a larger array of vitamins.

So if you look closely these vitamin drinks aren't all they're cracked up to be...yet they still made it so far. The power of marketing prevails again. If you have something that loses worth if you look at it closely, target those who won't look at it closely. In this take target a group who just want to justify not treating their body as well as it perhaps deserves. Nutrients water tagline 'Be bad. Drink good' summarizes this perfectly. That warm fuzzy feeling you get from not inflicting a bottle of soft drink on yourself and instead choosing vitamin water costs the company nothing, doesn't mean they can't charge you for it though.

The perfect target market for this was university students. As a uni student I can say...we don't eat well, sometimes very poorly...and then we make up for it by drinking ourselves stupid...Not something I've exactly had the time to do recently...but if I did, I probably would have. So for us to have that little healthy drink that tastes not too bad and makes us think we're doing something good for ourselves is golden. However university students are often a tough group to market to because whilst we are all united by university, we are still very diverse, spread out geographically and spread out over many different favoured advertising mediums. So instead of doing normal advertising and waiting for us to acknowledge them, they come to us.

Nutrient water is well known for willingly showing up to any uni activities and handing out free samples. None of this sitting back with normal advertising, this is direct, punch in the face style advertising, and on uni students it works. Obviously this is a costly venture to just hand out your products for free...however in this case you can see it clearly paid off.

However there is one thing that I think could be improved of. However it may not be in their hands. In most take away joints meals are the most common purchases. Therefore it is the best way to clear drinks via this method. However Vitamin water is not available in a lot of these. The only take away places I have found to do this are Nando's and Oporto and they do charge you extra for it. I am an avid Subway eater and I do get quite disappointed everytime I go through that checkout because it always came down to do I want the cookie meal...or just a vitamin water...the vitamin water unfortunately never won.

This of course is all speculating on whether the distributor of these drinks has any power over organizations such as Subway. However personally even though I have discovered the secret of it just being a few cleverly placed vitamins into cordial I would still be willing to pay extra to have this slight positive drink as opposed to a huge thing of raspberry soft drink which really can't be doing me that much good at all.

In all essence the companies should have the power to say you get my drinks on the proviso it goes into a meal as an option even if you have to charge extra. This all goes to show that there is most likely always room for improvement even for as successful product launches as this. Distribution is an important aspect of any launch, it is important to get more than a simple yes or no for whether someone will stock your item or not. Whilst it did not cost Vitamin water...I'm sure in some other cases taking that extra effort could have beena make or break deal.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

╠ Insight - Vegemite Census╣

One thing that has always confused me about certain advertisements is when they use one medium to predominantly advertise not a product, but instead a site, which is used to advertise your product to a greater degree.

The benefit of websites over TV or other sources can't be denied because it makes the transition in advertisement of it being a background thing to something you actively pay attention to. So if you can convert a TV view to a website view you have a plus right there.

However the issue I have is with the transition. While a website view is better, how many people actually look at an ad like this and then look up the site...

The way I watch TV is as a background noise while I work on the when this ad comes on, I am at my computer ready to go...however I have never even been tempted to go to this site. I consider it a waste of my time to actively seek to be advertised to...perhaps if there was some prize to be won, but just to be advertised to no.

So my question is, who does actually do these? What is the market for this sort of advertising. If a vegemite eater who had an internet browser open upon seeing this ad did not consider going to it, then who does? And if the answer is as dismal as I suspect...then how do these sort of campaigns keep popping up?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

╠ Comic - Aussies do it better╣

Many apologies for the long absence. I spent all of my time up to this weekend working on Manifest (Melbourne Anime Festival). I was Vice Convenor, Cosplay Coordinator as well as many other roles and because of this I had no time to spend on anything else. Because of this University also suffered so I may still be a bit slow in posts because I have a lot to catch up on if I want to still do well this semester ^^;

To continue on with where I was up to here's the comic to go with the commonwealth ad.

I hope this comic was good because it may have been a bit rushed unfortunately due to my workload. I spent some more time on the art today because of it but I probably should have worked on the lines a bit more.

The basic jist on this comic is in reference to over augmentation of items. For those of you who don't know what augmentation means it's when you add new features to an item. So this is just a humourous rendering of when an item is augmented so much that the original purpose of the item is lost sight of.

The next breakdown I do will be of Vodafone's ad. I don't have a new list for the poll yet because I haven't had time to investigate what ads are suitable but hopefully I will by the next breakdown.

As usual comments are welcome and I look forward to getting onto the Vodafone ad when I catch up on Uni.

Monday, September 15, 2008

╠ Commonwealth Bank - Dollarmite ╣

Many apologies for the random update schedule. With Melbourne Anime Festival looming most of my time is going to that. However that shall be finished in two weeks so look forward to some normality then

Anyway I'd just like to say thankyou for all those who read or commented on my woolworths insight piece. It was really inspirational to get responses like that and also taught me a lot. One of the things that surprised me most however is that my post was even popular enough to pick up a bot in that of Tina which seemed to just respond because there was mentioning of a credit card.

Also please note the logo is slightly different this time around. I lost the original in my laptop issues and needed to start again. I'm happy with how it turned out...and since the main difference is in the font it doesn't hurt too much since it's all covered up. Anyway on with the show.

Commonwealth Bank - Dollarmite

Overall I must say I quite enjoy this ad. I think it is compiled quite well and it all starts with the first line...

"Keeping with the banks determination to evolve..."

This line just sets it up, it embodies everything that the banks current media campaign is standing for. Most importantly the word determination which is actually emphasized because of it's importance and it links with the previously established slogan of determined to be different to actually make sure you know who the ad is for without stating it.

I believe there is a lot of power to this approach. Once you label something with advertising of a brand it seems to cheapen it overall and I think this can even apply to advertising. This is why some of the most successful ads can be the ones like Cadbury's Gorilla ad which don't directly spam the brand directly at you.

Now for those of you unaware of the Determined to be different tagline, it may well be because you missed this ad.

Commonwealth Bank - Determined to be different

This campaign itself was quite spectacular. The beauty of it was that it wasn't your conventional campaign saying 'buy this'. All this campaign did was launch a tagline 'Determined to be different' fast. And as far as I'm aware it succeeded. That brand spanking new tagline has effectively established its place in such a prominent company.

The reason this needed to be established is because banks used to be horrible at customer service. They were just another Telstra basically. Then along comes St George with superior customer service and bam...all of a sudden the market for customer service excellence in banks begins. Commonwealth is not the only bank doing this. I'm sure a few of you have noticed the banks all arcing up recently such as NAB's Climb every mountain.

Sure there are nonsensical and borderline disrespectful misrepresentations of Australia but it is different and as such syncs with the tag. I'm not sure how many of you can remember back but in the time of this ad these advertisements were everywhere. Ridiculous amounts of money simply advertising determined to be different...and overall I think it was worth it.

None the less, back to the original ad. Each line and shot in this ad helps so much in so many different ways. First you've got the transformer dollarmite, and I'm not sure about kids these days but if this ad was around when I was a kid I would have gone up to my mum and made her sign me up for it no matter what it was. Getting kids excited about banks is sort of an untapped market...mainly because kids are poor by nature...but kids become adults, more importantly adults who are too lazy to transfer over to a new bank. So it's good to see some targeting there.

There's also the humour aspect. Personally I think to most this would be an enjoyable ad overall. Compared to normal ads you wouldn't feel too hurt if this was in an ad break...some of you may even smile or chuckle at it. That in itself gives a lot of power to the ad because it means you're open to giving the ad attention which effectively makes you mroe susceptible to its message.

I really like the reps response to the idea as well because it is so smart, so calculated and because of this it gives you a sense that you would trust these individuals with the big decisions. It makes you happy to have these people in charge of your money.

Overall sneaking all of this into one 29 second ad is quite an achievement. I am quite proud of Commonwealth bank for this and am a proud member of their bank.

Anyway thankyou again for taking the time to read my blog. Feel free to comment or whatever. Also remember there is a poll to vote on which ad I will break down in the possibly distant future. It finishes soon so if you want your vote to count get in quick.

Happy Banking

Thursday, September 11, 2008

╠ Insight - Woolworths Credit Card ╣

When I was first getting into the marketing blog scene I noticed that everyone took a sort of different approach to what I did. Everyone else focused more on insights on any form of marketing. I avoided this because I never suspected myself to have insight on such things. However today I found myself actually pondering something worthy of such a blog and figured it was worth putting here. I think this is all more of a frame of mind, if you keep your mind open to such things they are all around, and the more I involve myself in this hopefully the more insights I will have. Anyway on with the insight.

As some of you may know I work for Dick Smith Electronics, which is a subdivision of Woolworths. Overall my opinion of Woolworths has been quite low with my dealings inside the business. They don't take care of their staff overly well. However their new venture in that of the credit card.

The first thing that has to be pointed out about the credit card is that it is in no way a supermarket trying to become a bank. In fact the card itself is linked to HSBC so they aren't actually taking care of that side.

The power in this card is the market research that will now be at Woolworths fingertips. From every sale at their store they will be able to track everything that you buy on the card which allows customer tracking like never before. In the past you could always see what someone was buying but now you can track that same consumer unobtrusively.

Visit Frequency
From this card you can track regularity of visits, you can find which people return each week, people who return only for certain sales, people who only shop when the weather is nice, people who shop determined on how much they bought in their previous shop etc. Of course all of this depends on having brand loyalty to woolworths. However woolworths are offering double points on when you shop with them and triple if you buy their products which is quite an incentive which itself helps for that loyalty.

Purchase tracking
Also with each visit you can keep tracking items which people buy and as such develop the lists of what items consist of that customers staples and what are irregular purchases. This could be incredibly useful for working out sales or just base prices.

Say you value Tim Tams at $2 and will buy them only when at or below this price and lets assume that's below their normal cost. By repeated sales eventually Woolworths would be able to discover this. Now say their are 100,000 people out there that have varying levels of what they value tim tams at. From this Woolworths could discover the perfect sale amount in order to sell the exact amount they want and get the highest price to do so. Including this with the previous ability to determine when people shop and you just have to start wondering just how much control the consumer has on their actions and how much power this market research can have on people.

Woolworths have the power to control peoples sales unlike any other competitor in the Australian market. With this they can set their base prices, sales value and time with incredible effectiveness.

That being said this is only if they utilize this. As I said before I don't have the greatest respect for them, however the potential here is amazing, and as such I hope they do use it. Anyway I hope I've put forward my excitement about the possibilities that this card represents and somehow at least intrgiued a few of you.

Other Gruen News
Now back onto the normal stuff. I'm really busy this coming week with assignments as well as Manifest stuff so the Commonwealth breakdown may still be delayed a bit but I now have the Sony ad to do after that and now here's a new series of ads to vote on for after these two. The choices are as follows

Optus - End of Time (Advert with various clocks lacking time and an elephant for some reason)

Birdseye - Exaggerator (Mates eating chips discussing getting back from a footy match with one hugely exaggerating everything)

Vodafone - Take Everything With you (Guy getting ready to leave folds up his life and puts it in his pocket)

Votes are heavily appreciated. Also if you have any comments on anything just leave them below. Once again thankyou all for your time.

Monday, September 8, 2008

╠ Comic - Doomed To Repeat ╣

I have returned! After over a week of being laptopless I can now return to the internet world in all of its glory. I must say the time off was hard. Not so much my dependence on the internet but more all the stuff I had to do. Unfortunately I lost quite a few files in the process such as all my bookmarks and programming files so there are a few other things I was planning on doing that have to now unfortunately go on hold.

None the less onto the catch up. Here is the comic to go with the Cadbury Trucks ad breakdown. In order to make up for the loss in time I decided to trial colouring the comic. Let me know what you think.

Since I did Cadbury again I thought why not have the same sort of thing happen. This also introduces the April character and the relationship that Tannie will be perceived to have with her. Although I sort of hope I'm not painting Tannie as too much of a jerk to begin with.

None the less I hope you enjoyed this comic. As usual any comments are welcome. The next post of mine shall be on the Commonwealth Bank ad which shall hopefully be done some time this week. As for after that the current poll is still open and in dire need of a few tiebreaking votes.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

╠ I'm Not Dead...Loosely Speaking╣

Some of you have probably noticed my sort of large absence from posting anything here. The reason for this is because my laptop caught a virus and had this issue of being unable to start. So because of this I took it to get the data extracted before a reformatting and being the cheap guy I am I opted for the free approach of going through people I know rather than paying for it and getting it back same day. My first quot was last Saturday, then on Saturday I was told Tuesday, then on Tuesday I was told Today and then today I was told next Saturday so personally I'm just not expecting it back any time soon.

Unfortunately being computerless there is very little I can do for the Gruen Transfer. As some of you know I volunteer for the Melbourne Anime Festival which is coming up on the Grand Final weekend and so all of my very limited access to the internet(Mostly Uni) is going to either that or all of those assignments I should technically be working on.

None the less I shall still set up a poll for this week. I had quite a few ads that I was going to put up but since youtube isn't cooperating I shall have to use some old options. Since last week had a total of 1 vote I figured the two losers for being so close deserve another chance. So this week you are choosing out of Vodafone - Take everything with you, Mitsubishi - Daniel's Birthday and Sony - All Eyes on you. Please vote. I'd really like to have more than one single vote deciding everything.

Last weeks winner was the Commonwealth Dollarmite ad so once I'm back on track I'll get the comic up for cadbury ad and then head straight into commonwealth. Anyway thankyou all for your time and I hope you continue to read on once my laptop gets back on its feet.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

╠ Cadbury - Trucks ╣

This week it was a real tussle for who would win the poll. It was really good to see despite a few less overall votes, but I blame that on the nothing new aspect of it. None the less by the end a winner did appear in that of Cadbury's Trucks ad. Overall in retrospect I think perhaps I should have considered there being problem with critiquing two ads from the same campaign, but none the less since it is what was voted for I shall continue on. To those of you who missed the gorilla breakdown, it can be found here.

╠ Cadbury - Gorilla ╣

Anyway, on with the show!

To those of you who read the Gorilla break down you'll not that I pointed out that despite completely being irrelevant to chocolate it was still very effective in my mind. This obviously applies to this advertisement as well. The reason this works is because of chocolate by nature is an impulse buy. I mean it is possible that you will purposefully go out to seek chocolate, but for the most part it will be an unanticipated purchase. It is notable in chocolate adds that there isn't a lot of variance. From my experience there are in majority two types. The first is the one focusing on the chocolate in particular and trying to convince you that somehow eating this particular bar of chocolate will make you so happy that you'll almost have an orgasm from it...perhaps a bit over the top but I'm assuming you can at least picture the sort of ad I am referring to. The second is the one that simply spams the brand. For the most part I only remember Cadbury doing that...However they are also sort of have a huge monopoly on the whole thing meaning that have the money to put into such things

This ad comes into the second type. However it takes a more passive approach than the usual 'Wouldn't it be nice if the world was cadbury' ads. Like the Gorilla ad it introduces the cadbury element at the start and then has something random and finishes with the same ending. I think the reason this was less successful may simply be because whilst it is quite amusing, I don't think it had the same potential to spread as viral as the Gorilla ad did. If you think about it as a youtuber type individual I think you're far more likely to pass on a Gorilla playing the drums than a range of trucks having a race.

That being said there are other elements of this ad I do appreciate above that of the Gorilla ad. It is far more clever with it's use of it's special trademarked purple colour. They didn't simply take the lazy way out and just use the one car that was purple, they thought about a few more uses Eg. The sky and the lights underneath the baggage carrier.

Personally I find the music very suiting for this clip and the tagline overall because it successfully ties into both what you're seeing as well as the glass and a half of joy tagline with the having a good time build up. I think it works well with building up a feeling of enjoyment because the race looks like a lot of fun. I think the unconventionality of it works well as well since the different trucks give the overall race a unique and different feel. Which I find clever because unique links to new, which goes well since it is the launch of a new tagline.

Overall I think this ad works quite well. There are a lot of good elements at work. I think it was never built to be quite as big ats the gorilla ad though and instead to simply be something to help capture a larger audience when paired as opposed to being in direct competition with it.

Sorry for not being able to say too much about this ad, however it is simpy in retrospect that I realize half the things I could say ave already been said for the Gorilla ad. Also sorry for the lateness but it's just been one of those weeks with no real free time whatsoever. In fact I haven't been alone at home pretty much since the poll ended.

Anyway for this week I have come up with three new options for ads to break down. There is Daniel's Birthday which is a Mitsubishi Pajero Ad. There is Sony, all eyes on you which was made to promote the Vaio laptop and finally the Commonwealth Bank ad with the Dollarmite remake which reinforces the Determined to be different line.

I hope you all enjoyed this breakdown and as usual comments are all too welcome.

Monday, August 18, 2008

╠ Comic - Can Sex Unsell Sex? ╣

I had a good idea for this comic so I felt like getting into it right away. I didn't get many comments on the Bonds ad so I hope that's not because I got it totally wrong. Also if any of you have recommendations for ads I think I'm getting to the stage where I sorely need them since voting this week seems to have stagnated because of it.

As for this comic. If anything it made me realize how much I struggle at drawing girls. In the end I just had to give up for the final frame and trace them from a bonds website. Quite sad really. but hopefully one day I'll be able to draw that well freehand.

As usual I hope you enjoy the comic and comments are always welcome.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

╠ Bonds - Hi and Lo ╣

Despite ending up with the ad I felt I knew the least about as the clear winner with 9 of 11 votes I feel quite good about how this is all going. In a way I am actually proud to have to delve into the one I felt I would be the weakest on for experience sake. Also to get over 10 votes really just blew my mind. I really didn't expect to get that high within months of starting this so to break 10 on the second poll is just instant win. I really do have to thank those that have helped me with this, Kibble for looking over my comics before I submit them, Zac who as a marketing blogger himself has been very helpful and also inspirational to a newbie such as myself and of course Rachael who basically is the reason for this blog to start and even the one behind the idea of including comics. Also to anyone else who has helped along the way or left comments, thankyou.

Now onto the semi naked women! (Not a line I thought I'd ever say)

Bonds - Hi and Lo

First off I have to point out I didn't realize how many close up bum shots there were in these sorts of ads. I'm currently on capped internet so Youtube stops to continue loading and the amount of times it stops simply on a rear is quite amazing...

The reason I was first worried about beaking down this ad was because I was thinking of it as a single ad and not thinking about the background behind it. Bonds has a history with ads that are outside the norm and there is a very good reason for this.

If you think about the ads in a different light and think about what other people have done when it comes to underwear ads and you find the options are pretty limited. It's usually either something saying 'These are the most comfortable underwear that you will ever wear' or 'wear this and your chances of having sex will go up'. The first option sort of works at first but wears off through peoples lives once they realize that underwear in itself don't really vary that much comfort wise. No matter which underwear you get odds are you'll face moments of discomfort since by nature underwear is about confining sensitive areas. As for the latter, the problem with this is that first off how gullible do you have to be in order to believe that underwear will be the decider for if someone has sex with you. Personally I think if you find a way to show your underwear before the decision is made then you've probably done something wrong.

Another point of these sexy underwear ads is that they're marketed to the opposite gender in the sense that you should buy it for your significant other. The issue with this is that I'm not sure about other males but I personally don't see myself as the type to buy ladies lingerie, first because of the looks I would get at the counter and second because I'm not the same up there and down there so I wouldn't have the confidence to enforce that this is the right underwear for her. Then there's the issue of girls buying for males. This I have less insight on but I believe it isn't that effective either because the main fact is that men don't care about their underwear that much. You could buy them some nice and shiny underwear for them, but they'd be just as happy with a pair of kmarts. I believe women by nature are more rational with such decisions so they wouldn't be able to justify spending the extra bit to just make their special man friend that little bit specialler.

So when it comes down to having just these options then you can understand where Bonds is coming from. Simply trying to advertise underwear without sticking to the old cliches. For those of you who haven't seen the ads predating this one here's some that I managed to struggle my way to on my capped internet


I like this ad because it manages to get the cliches across while still being different. They're doing all different types of dances thus promoting the versatility that the underwear can remain comfortable through. Also they chose nice looking girls enforcing the sexy bit as well. But all this is subliminal. All you're seeing is girls enjoying being in their underwear.


Another add enforcing the versatility whilst comfort remains and again with cute girls. However again all you see is girls enjoying themselves in their underwear. The clever bit of this ad though is the last second. It just looks like an off hand shot outside of the normal ad however it ads show much because it reinforces just how much fun these girls are having in their underwear, hitting all of the subliminal notes hard.

Davenport - Pie Fight

Now this one isn't actually Bonds and I actually spent ages looking for it because I thought it actually was Bonds and it was the one that I remembered best out of all of them. Much to my surprise I found out it was a Davenport ad. Bonds seems to have put such a monopoly on out there underwear ads that the one I remembered best out of all of them was attributed to them. This ad shows how Bonds have improved on an ad such as this by having Bonds big and bold on every bit of underwear. This is a perfect example of the impotance of labelling your products.

Now back onto Hi and Lo. The reason this ad works is because of the WTF factor that everyone is so confused about. You hear the scream at the start and then are simply glued to the screen wondering about what exactly you are watching. The power in this is that your mind is more active than for the average so whenever you see the Bonds tag on the underwear it is absorbed directly in as opposed to being as easily ignored as some other messages. The bonds tag is in almost every shot so that's a lot of times you're absorbing the bonds name.

The reason why this is all importnat is because of brand awareness. Underwear at least for me is something that I don't get too emotionally involved in. I don't know who makes underwear. In fact when looking at the davenport ad I was like 'Oh right, they do make underwear'. People are more inclined to purchase something from the brand name most prominant in their mind. This is because of the mindset that we assume that since we have heard more about it, the more worth hearing about it is.

So this is the conclusion I've come to. There's no secret meaning behind what they're doing apart from the obvious hi and lo connotation with the game they're playing. The true point behind this is so simply first off show that their underwear is comfortable considering they are able to do such an exerting activity in that underwear while not showing any discomfort. Secondly that the girls are nice looking so that you think you would be nice looking in them too. Then finally to spam the name bonds so that when you go underwear shopping Bonds is in your evoked set of main options you would consider when buying underwear. Personally next time I go underwear shopping...which as a male will probably be quite a while away, I will be considering Bonds, how about you?

I hope some of you found this at least a bit insightful and I hope I haven't overlooked anything. Also if any of you know of any ads you'd like to see broken down give me a buzz because this week is going to include losers from the previous weeks. The contenders this