Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Marketing Monday & Tuesday Tip Combo: My 2 "Sense"

Really, it's not my two forms of "sense" but those defined by Al Ries. Who is he? A Marketing God. One of the backbones of marketing in the 20th century (and his daughter carries on in the 21st century). He's written 11 books that made him kind of famous and he created what I call the "Immutable Laws" books. My favorite was "The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding." He also practically invented the concept of Guerilla marketing (back before the interwebz) and he refocused Madison Avenue (and all of the US through the ads coming out of Madison Avenue) on the power of the media.

One of my favorite articles by Al Ries is currently posted on AdAge's web site (it's been there before and in the print magazine over the years, just change the names and use it again and again--the truth never gets old): Marketing Sense Isn't....Common Sense. Two different kinds of "sense" and Al Ries distills down the gist of the problem so well. Here's the crux of it (emphasis added by me):
Common sense says a second slogan is additive. "Little Caesars is known for takeout, so we'll launch a delivery program. That way we'll be known for two ideas instead of one."

Marketing sense is subtractive. A second slogan seldom gets accepted because it conflicts with an established slogan in consumers' minds. Even worse, a second slogan often undermines the existing one. More is less.

There's little enough common sense going around--just imagine the shortage of marketing sense!

If you haven't read any of the books or articles or other massive contributions to the marketing and advertising industries by Al Ries, do go get your hands on one or two or ten of his books. He makes everything seem simple to understand, not just common sense and marketing sense. Oh and yeah, he is pretty much the one who made that last line (More is less) oh-so-famous--more than half a century ago!

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