Old Spice was competing head-to-head with Axe, a trendier competitor vs. Old Spice’s somewhat stodgy image. “Smell Like a Man” changed all that.
Axe’s commercials had long focused on men using their products and attracting swarms of pretty women. This turned out to be an advertising cliche that overlooked a significant factor. Men used the product, but women bought the product. Overall, men only buy 15% of U.S. consumer products. Women buy 85%. This is especially true for body care products.
Old Spice designed ads that would appeal to women without turning off men. A handsome, well-built former football player was shown riding a horse on the beach shirtless, leaving the shower and in similar scenes. Although the ads could have been used for the cover of a romance novel, the spokesman was still very much a man’s man.
Don’t assume that the person using your product is also the decision maker.
Solve Your Customer’s Problem
Nike: “Just Do It”
In the late 1980s, Reebok outsold Nike who sold primarily to marathon runners. Then suddenly everybody was into fitness and exercising.
Nike’s trademark slogan “Just Do It” encourages people to push beyond their limits and pursue their dreams. It’s still used today.
The campaign worked. Nike sales skyrocketed from $800 million in 1988 to $9.2 billion in 1998.
Find a New Way to Connect With Your Current Customers
Coca-Cola: “Share a Coke”
After 127 years, Coca-Cola must find it hard to come up with something new. (Well, there was “New Coke,” but we all know how that turned out.) Coke found a new way to appeal to their loyal customers by printing first names on bottles and cans.
Vending machines were stocked with Cokes bearing random first names. If a Coke with your name didn’t roll out of the machine, you were encouraged to “Share a Coke” with someone with that name. You can still join their “Share a Coke” campaign and order customized Coke bottles.
Find a creative, new way to connect with your customers.
Be Creative – There Are Many Unique Ways to Tell Your Story
Absolut Vodka: The Absolut Bottle
Liquor ads generally show attractive, well-dressed people partying in plush surroundings. Absolut took a different approach, creating 1,500 unique ads featuring their bottle. This campaign holds the record for the longest, uninterrupted ad campaign. During the course of this campaign, their share of the U.S. imported vodka market jumped from 2.5% to about 50%.
If Absolut could create 1,500 ads featuring a simple bottle, just think what you could do with your product.
Take a Stand on Issues Your Customers are Passionate About