The ratings for Monday night’s US Presidential debate hit an all-time high. Based on recent polls, it appears a very close race. With such a large and captivated audience, the Audi brand did a fantastic job with their new ad released on-line during the debates. This 90 second spot for the new $110,000 Audi R7 is a high quality spot that feels like a Super Bowl ad, with the hope of going viral.
For advertising to be considered effective, it has work to establish your brand’s long-term reputation, based on a simple, unique, own-able and motivating brand positioning while engaging and influencing consumers to see, think, feel, act or scream about your brand, so your brand ends up in a stronger business position. At Beloved Brands, we use the ABC’S to judge whether an ad will work for the brand. (Attention, Branding, Communication and Stickiness). The Attention and Branding are about how you say it, while the Communication and Stickiness are more related to what you say. It is the creative idea that brings them all together.
- Attention: You have to get noticed in a crowded media world where consumers see 7000 ads per day. If your brand doesn’t draw attention naturally, then you’ll have to force it into the limelight.
- Branding: Ads that tell the story of the relationship between the consumer and the brand will link best. Even more powerful are ads that are from the consumers view of the brand. It’s not how much branding there is, but how close the brand fits to the climax of the ad.
- Communication: Tap into the insights of the consumer helps tell the brand’s life story. Keep your story easy to understand, not just about what you say, but how you say it.
- Stickiness: Build a consistent experience over time to drive a consistent reputation in the minds and hearts of the consumer.
Our review of the Audi Ad
Audi’s creative idea says “Beautiful things are worth fighting for”. That line just screams consumer desire. To be able to afford a $110,000 luxury car, they are positioning it as a reward for all your hard work. The ad uses the creative idea of “worth fighting for” as the main inspiration for everything in the ad, helping gain attention, driving towards the branding in the end and communicating the desire. As they build this campaign, I hope they keep going with this idea.
- They use it to garner the attention of the audience. As I watched the ad, my first thought was “here are two campaign officials about to fight” and in the moment of the debate, I thought this is going to be hilarious. It made me want to watch right away.
- In terms of branding, I admire that they waited. Ipsos will tell you that the best brand link comes from the ads where the brand is part of the climax of the story. Too many Marketers mistakenly think it is about how much branding you have in the ad, or how early you have the brand show up. As this is a viral ad, with the Audi name on it, you can really afford to wait. I kept wondering “how are they going to naturally tie this story into the brand?”. Great job.
- In terms of communication, they did a great job in creatively expressing desire. That’s what every brand manager asks for, but it is not an easy thing to do. This ad used the build up of the story to pay off that desire with the ending having the two valets about to fight over who gets to drive the new Audi. With any viral ad, in a crowded world of social media it can be hit and miss.
- In terms of stickiness, the spot has over a million views after 48 hours. For this type of budget and brand, I would say that is ok-to-good, but not yet amazing. I found it through an industry friend on Facebook. I can see the advertising community loves the spot, but I would like to see it show up more naturally through others on Facebook, Twitter or even LinkedIn. So maybe it’s a case of a poor media play. I hope the brand stays with this type of campaign and continues to build the idea outward. I love it and I am looking forward to the next ad in the campaign.
Lastly, Audi did a great job in staying politically neutral. As a brand coach, unless your brand is closely related to the outcome of one party over the other, with a 45%-to-45% race, only a foolish brand would publicly pick sides.
To read more on Marketing Execution, here is our training workshop that we run to help Marketers get smarter:
Beloved Brands: Who are we?
At Beloved Brands, we will make your brand stronger and your brand leaders smarter. We lead workshops to define your brand, helping you uncover a unique, own-able Brand Positioning Statement and an organizing Big Idea that transforms your brand’s DNA into a consumer-centric and winning brand reputation. We lead workshops to build a strategic Brand Plan that will optimize your resources and motivates everyone that touches the brand to follow the plan. We coach on Marketing execution, helping build programs that create a bond with your consumers, to ensure your investment drives growth on your brand. We will build a Brand Management Training Program, so you can unleash the full potential of your Marketing team, enabling them to contribute smart and exceptional Marketing work that drives brand growth. We cover strategic thinking, analytics, brand planning, brand positioning, creative briefs, customer marketing and marketing execution.
Beloved Brands Training program
At Beloved Brands, we can build a Brand Management Training Program, to unleash the full potential of your Marketing team
- How to think strategically: We believe that Strategic Thinking is an essential foundation, to help Marketers ask big questions that challenge and focus brand decisions. We teach the value of asking good questions, using four interruptive questions to help frame your brand’s strategy, looking at your competitive position, your brand’s core strength, the connectivity with your consumer and the internal situation your brand faces.
- Write smarter Brand Plans: We demonstrate how to write each component of the Brand Plan, looking at brand vision, purpose, values, goals, key Issues, strategies and tactics. We provide a full mock brand plan, with a framework for you to use on your own brand. We show how to build Marketing Execution plans as part of the overall brand plan, looking at a Brand Communications Plan, Innovation Plan, In-store plan and Experiential plan. This gives the strategic direction to everyone in the organization.
- Create winning Brand Positioning Statements: We show how to write a classic Brand Positioning statement with four key elements: target market, competitive set, main benefit and reason to believe (RTBs). We then show how to build an Organizing Big Idea that leads every aspect of your brand, including promise, story, innovation, purchase moment and experience.
- Write smarter Creative Briefs: The Creative Brief frames the strategy and positioning so your Agency can creatively express the brand promise through communication. The hands-on Creative Brief workshop explores best in class methods for writing the brief’s objective, target market, consumer insights, main message stimulus and the desired consumer response.
- Be smarter at Brand Analytics: We show how to build a deep-dive business review on the brand, looking at the category, consumers, competitors, channels and brand. We start with the smart analytical principles that will challenge your thinking and help you gain more support by telling analytical stories through data. We teach how to turn your analysis into a presentation for management, showing the ideal presentation slide format.
- Get better Marketing Execution: We provide Brand Leaders with tools and techniques for judging communication concepts from your agencies, as well as processes for making decisions and providing effective feedback. We teach how to make marketing decisions with the ABC’S, so you can choose great ads and reject bad ads looking at tools such as Attention (A), Branding (B), Communication (C) and Stickiness (S). We teach how to provide copy direction that inspires and challenges the agency to deliver great execution.
- How to build Media Plans: We look at media as an investment and as a brand growth strategy, exploring various media options—both traditional and on-line. We bring a more consumer centric approach to media, aligning the media choices to where your consumer will be most likely to engage with your brand message. We look at all the types of Media through the lens of the Brand Leader, with advice on how to use traditional media options, such as TV, radio, newspaper, out-of-home and Modern media options such as digital, social and search.
- Winning the Purchase Moment: We provide brand leaders with analytics, planning and decision making tools to help their instincts and judgement for moving consumers to purchase. Complete in-store business review, looking at categories, consumer shopping behavior, competitors, customers and the overall brand performance. We teach the basics of customer marketing planning, identifying the target consumer, in-store messages, strategies, tactics and project management. We look at the available tools for customer marketing including pricing, promotions, retail shelf management, merchandising and operational execution.
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