Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Bang! Bang! Marketing

I shudder at a Guardian article about modern day marketing.

I Quote:

"We got a group of 14 or 16 actors, who were all football fans, but pretended to be fans [of the unnamed club]," explains Graham Goodkind, Sneeze's founder and chairman. "And they went round bars and clubs around the ground, in groups of two, saying that one of their mates had been sacked from work because he kept on getting these text messages and talking to everyone about it, and his boss had had enough and given him the boot. So they were going round with this petition trying to get his job back - kind of a vaguely plausible story.

"And then the actors would pull out of their pocket some crumpled-up leaflet, which was for the text subscription service. They'd have a mobile phone in their pocket, and they'd show them how it worked. 'What's the harm in that?' they'd say. And they could have these conversations with lots of people - that was the beauty of it. Two people could spend maybe 20 minutes or half an hour in each pub, working the whole pub. We did it at two home games and reckon we got about 4,000 people on the petition in total."

The petition went in the bin, of course, but subscriptions to the club's texting service soared. "The week after we had done the activity it went up to 120 sign-ups," says Goodkind, who is also boss of the Frank PR agency.
A lot of this is spured by the poor performance of advertising:

A 2004 study by Deutsche Bank found that, in the short term, just 18% of television campaigns in the US actually generated a positive return on investment. In the long term this figure rose, but only to 45%, suggesting that most TV advertising is little more than a fun way for a company to waste its money.

There is much more to this article and it is worth reading iffor no other reason that to look at the ethics of moderndat Marketing, advertising and - I regret to say PR.