Tuesday, 31 May 2011

the Swedes go that little bit further

Passengers on Stockholm's local transport network can now design a personalised smart card ticket featuring their own choice of image.

Passengers ordering a smart card can upload a personal photo from their home computer, or select a picture from an online gallery. The card is then printed and mailed out within a few days.

Philippe Cambriel of Gemalto (who produce the smart cards) said the idea 'gets consumers bonded to their card', and 'will be a powerful feature to accelerate the phase-out of paper tickets.' The company set up the project in less than three months, and there has been a 50% take-up rate since its launch in February.

'Offering our commuters a travel card that is unique to them is an innovative way to provide a more personal level of service', Philippe said.

Although smart card ticketing is in its infancy in this country, this is definately one idea that could help benefit marketing of the technology in the long term.

As one company says in their ads, "Every little helps".

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

East Coast Trains TV ad lacks benefits

The ad shares the journey of comic and impressionist Rory Bremner, as he travels up to Edinburgh on an East Coast service.

Although it's beautifully shot, the ad seems more like self promotion for the east coast itself rather than the train service that shares its name.

It shows the product in all its glory but where are the benefits (a subtle hint about journey times and wi-fi apart)? Where's my reason to travel by train? What's the key customer take out from the communication? Does it need a strap line to tie it all together?

Like I said, it's a lovely advert just not necessarily an effective one.

There is also another with Vic Reeves...

Monday, 9 May 2011

Thursday, 5 May 2011

have ideas been lost?

Over the last few years, marketers have become obsessed with wanting to do the latest thing and, in their quest, the concept of an idea seems to have been lost . The current in vogue area is technology.

However what seems to have been forgotten is, if it’s just technology, they won’t have it exclusively and their competitors will have it too.

So if everyone is using the same technology, the differentiator needs to become the idea. It is the idea and its execution that triumps in generating awareness and product recall over the medium that it appears within.

Concentrate on the best idea, using the best medium
- not the latest thing with no idea whatsoever.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

common sense from a wily old fox

This quote is for all you marketers who want to 'engage' with your customers. 

It is for all you marketers who believe your brand comes before your product.

It is for all you marketers who are obsessed with popularity rather than bottom line profitability.

 It goes like this...

"We don’t get them to try our product by convincing them to love our brand; we get them to love our brand by convincing them to try our product." Bob Hoffman.

Bob is a wily old fox of a CEO from across the pond, and he talks a lot common sense.

We like Bob a lot.

loving the new thetrainline.com advert

thetrainline.com have recently launched a new TV campaign and it's fair to say there's been a positive reaction from Joe Public (and Vernon Kay).

The ad, which features 80's party band Black Lace, uses the catchy line 'Choo, choo, choo - make savings with the trainline' as its hook, rhyming it with the band's classic 'Do, do, do come on and do the conga' anthem.

Funny? Yes. Different? Yes. Memorable? Yes. Possibly annoying after a while? Yes but so what!

@OfficialVernonK tweeted last week 'TheTrainLine adds! I love the fat fella in the gold cat suit! Very very funny!!' so at least they have celebrity endorsement to keep them happy!

when bus liveries fight back

Just stumbled upon a range of bus liveries from around the world and have picked three of our favourites to highlight.

Think it's a shame that more ideas like this are not seen on the UK's roads. I get the feeling that many marketers would love the opportunity to do something really different but are often shackled by the powers that be - who perhaps think their livery/identity should prevail above everything else.

Really believe that bus companies would benefit as much as advertisers if they would just allow themselves a little creative freedom.