Thursday, 26 July 2012

First Great Western's new TV ad

Take a look at the new TV ad from First Great Western and tell me what you think.

Beautifully shot using stunning imagery of the south west? Check.

Good looking family enjoying themselves in most of the shots? Check.

Giving the viewer a real reason to take the train over the car? Er, no, not really.

Much as you can look back at the British Rail ads from the 80s and mock their dated production, there is no doubt that Jimmy Savile did his best to convince you that there was benefit in taking the train.

For me, First Great Western's effort, as lovely as it is, is too much style over too little substance.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

can you put value on Facebook fans?

How much do you think your Facebook fans are worth?

Cider brand Bulmers has supposedly 'proved' that their fans on the social network site Facebook are worth £3.82 a week more in sales than non-fans. Really?

Surely those people who drink Bulmers are far more likely to be a fan of the brand on Facebook than those who drink another cider brand? So therefore those who like it (drink it) and more likley to buy more than those who don't like it (drink another cider brand)?

Although social media advertising is usually a nailed-on part of every marketing plan these days, the returns on investment marketers actually get are yet to be established.

Board members are getting a little nervous about being told they are spending money in the right places, but not seeing money coming back in to the business as a direct result.

Although social media can have an important place at the marketing table for many brands, one thing it certainly isn't is the holy grail of customer growth. Nothing on its own is.

I'm not sure Bulmers findings are enough to convince senior managers that proportion of their budget shouldn't be spent somewhere with a more proven track record of success.

See the original article here.

Monday, 23 July 2012

can public transport cope?

So after an age of waiting/planning/building etc, the 2012 London Olympics is nearly upon us.

And that means an influx of millions of people to our capital and significant others to various areas of the country where events are taking place. So lots and lots of people from around the world becoming a captive market for our super efficient public transport system...

I know plenty of people for whom the thought of negotiating London's tube system fills them with dread. I also know people who haven't got a clue who runs their local bus service, where it goes or how much it costs.

So for people who don't even speak the language and have possibly never even been to the city in question, the challenges are pretty big. For Opcos, TOCs and TfL the challenges are probably even bigger.

In all seriousness, will our foreign visitors survive? Will they be able to understand the maps, the timetables and the announcements? Will they go home singing our praises or cussing how we can make getting from A to B so difficult?

Whatever happens, let's hope we learn from any mistakes so the great British public are the long term beneficiaries.