With so many marketing avenues for companies to utilise, it’s easy to lose sight of the essence of effective messaging. It’s something that you see in a lot of corporate viral marketing campaigns – the companies are going for intangible brand awareness rather than an increase in sales.
Using Carlton Draught’s Big Ad as an example, sales of Carlton Draught actually dropped – despite reaching a Worldwide audience of 3 million people, who viewed the ad on the internet. The reason for this, was largely because there was no compelling reason to buy Carlton Draught presented in the campaign – instead, the ad was designed to create brand awareness alone. The ad failed in the one area it counts – the “Big Ad” failed to sell beer!
You could argue that brand awareness strategies are fundamentally flawed by an assumption that people will buy a product just because they are familiar with that product. Given the choice between two identical products, one which provided you with a compelling reason to buy, and the other which was a known brand, most people will pick the compelling offer.
So in the case of the ‘Big Ad’, the failure to monetize through advertising wasn’t so much about marketing avenues, as it was about a failure to communicate any key product benefits.
With hindsight, it’s hard not to see the irony within the Big Ads Lyrics…
“It’s a big ad? Expensive ad?
This ad better sell some blooooody beer!”