Monthly Archives: January 2014

Global Media and Feminism

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Many companies shy away from addressing the sensitive topics of gender inequality and feminism. Not Pantene though – it recently launched an advertisement in the Philippines that quickly went viral and gave feminism a boost. The video, called ‘Labels Against Women’, has been viewed more than 26 million times already, and is still growing. The ad makes a strong statement against the negative language used to describe powerful women in business by showing the contrast with terms used to describe males in business.

 

The ad has continued a discussion brought into the spot light by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg with her book and movement for women called ‘Lean In’. Sandberg posted statements in support of the Pantene ad’s messages, as have other feminist leaders. But not all are in favor of the ad, implying that the marketing message is only masquerading as supporting feminist issues in the workplace. Nonetheless, the ad is unique in the way it directly hits on the topic of women, work, and language. View it and decide for yourself how effective it is.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the importance of clearly defining a target market. What is Pantene’s target?
  2. View the video: http://youtu.be/kOjNcZvwjxI
  3. Discussion: did Pantene hit the mark; what are the key messages; is there a negative to this type of ad?
  4. Using the approach in this ad, have students work on similar messages for other consumer product goods directed at specific target markets (i.e., teens, ethnicities, genders, etc.)
  5. Debrief the exercise. What are the key learnings from students?

Source:  Brandchannel.com, Ad Age Daily, 12/71/13

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Top 100 Searches in 2013

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It’s important for marketers to keep current on topics of interests and trends around the world. This research gives us a good idea of what people are thinking and what they like and need. What did the world search for in 2013? Well (besides our usual searches for love and the meaning of life), the citizens of the world used Google’s search engine to keep current on topics ranging from food to celebrities.

 

Google processes two-out-of-three Internet queries each day. These queries give marketers a good snapshot of trends around the world: 1,000 Top 10 lists from 72 countries. The 2013 top spot were queries about South African activist Nelson Mandela. In the area of technology, Apple and Sony made the Top 10, plus the dance phenomenon Harlem Shake! Global events and uplifting happenings also drive consumers’ interests. Take a look – did you search for any of the top topics?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the importance of market research. What are sources that can be used? Why is tracking trends important?
  2. Bring up the site and show the video: http://www.google.com/trends/topcharts
  3. Divide students into teams and have each team examine a different Top 10 List topic.
  4. What are the trends from that topic?
  5. How can these trends be used to develop new products?
  6. Debrief the exercise by listing the ideas from each team.

Source:  Google

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My iPhone Smells like Popcorn

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The smell of popcorn is one of the world’s most enticing scents. Walk by a microwave that is popping corn and it is nearly impossible not to salivate. The folks at Pop Secret know that smell is an important part of the entire popcorn experience.

 

Pop Secret has recently launched a mobile phone attachment, called Pop Dongle, that gives consumers the sweet-and-salty smell of popcorn when they are playing the brand’s mobile game, Poptopia. Whenever a player swipes the butter inside the game 9which asks players to pop corn kernels), the Pop Dongle spritzes a scent of popcorn. It works by adding a device (dongle) into the audio jack of an iPhone or iPod Touch; the game uses a certain frequency signaling it to spread the smell of popcorn.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the importance of demonstrating a product, including tasting and smelling: experiential marketing.
  2. Bring up the Pop Secret web site: http://popsecret.com/poptopia/
  3. The Poptopia app can be found on iTunes.
  4. Next, show the video demonstrating the Pop Secret Dongle: http://youtu.be/SgJ7pqja7XY
  5. Discuss the competitors to Pop Secret.
  6. Divide students into teams and have teach compare the competitors. How does this product create a point of difference? What other ways are there to create a point of difference for the company?
  7. Debrief the exercise by showing the students’ points on the white board.

Source:  Ad Age Daily, 12/6/13

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