Sample Marketing Essay on Integrated marketing communications

First advertisement

From the brand’s perspective, the above advertisement was intended to create awareness among the members of the public (Britons) about pancreatic cancer and its symptoms (Stunt 2015, Para 10). Although this objective was achieved through a controversial method, the article’s author claimed that the advert achieved its objective because it elicited criticisms and evoked a culture of change towards pancreatic cancer. The intended audiences were the general members of the public especially the ones that never tested for pancreatic cancers.

In order to improve this advertisement, I would propose for a change of the entire advertisement because it is ironical that a person that is unaware of the advertisement’s objective would wish to have breast cancer. As for my case, I would pose a question about pancreatic cancer rather than make a wish like the one in the advertisement. For example, I would ask the target audiences whether they know pancreatic cancer kills and it is the fifth killer in UK (Stunt 2015, Para 2). Then from this perspective I would urge the members of the public to seek medical attention in their nearby healthcare facilities if they have never tested for this type of cancer. From the press article, although the advertisement received criticisms from the members of the public, it finally achieved its objective because majority of the people were curious to know about pancreatic cancer.

Second advertisement

The two advertisements are the same even though they appear in different configurations. The first one appeared in the streets of New York City after it was refined from the second one that appeared in the UK. From the brand’s objective, the two advertisements were intended to promote protein supplements by urging the target audiences to use these supplements to lose weight. Based on the images appearing on the billboard, the target audiences are the women with excessive weight. These women are encouraged to use the protein supplements portrayed on the advertisement to lose weight. In terms of effectiveness, the advertisement could be said to be effective because it is appealing to the target audiences. Nonetheless, it did not achieve its objective because it was banned before the message could reach the target audiences (Holley 2015, Para 3).

In order to improve this advertisement, I would recommend for the removal of the question posed on the advertisement. After removing the question, I would focus the attention of the advertisement on the protein supplements and their effectiveness in weight loss. Based on the trade press article, the advertisement elicited controversial debate about the product and this could affect the product negatively (Holley 2015, Para 6).

Third advertisement

The objective of the advertisement was to celebrate women in South Africa as it is usually done every year on 9th August; thus, women were encouraged to look young and think like men (Bertsche 2015, Para 2). Although the intention was good, the advertisement ended up being controversial because South African women who were the intended audiences ended up being offended by the advertisement. Based on this fact, the advertisement could be said to be ineffective in achieving its objective because rather than congratulating women it ended up offending them.

In order to improve this advertisement, I would propose for the removal of the offensive writings so that the advertisement can focus its attention of congratulating women. For example, the new advertisement would include words like “congratulations to all South African women for being an inspiration to us”. Then conclude by the hash tag “happy women’s day.”

From the trade press article’s perspective, the advertisement had negative effects on the company’s image because it appeared to compare women with children and men. The negative effects generated by this advertisement were likely to affect the sale of Bic ballpoint in South Africa. Accordingly, the company’s top management was quick to apologize to women so that they could not protest against the Bic ballpoint (Bertsche 2015, Para 6).

Question 2

Creative advert                                                                        Non-creative advert           

 

The first advertisement is highly creative than the second one because of the following reasons. First, with regard to the target audience, the first advertisement is targeting adults rather than targeting children because we see a man in the advertisement rather than a child. Although this might be debatable, the age of the man suggests something towards the target audiences. Second, with regard to consumers’ behaviors, it is outright from the first advertisement that you consume coca cola when you are thirsty (Armstrong, 2010, p. 279). Third, with regard to the process of communication, the approach adopted in the first advertisement is consistent with the message being communicated to the target audiences. This is in relation to the fact that coca cola is directly connected to quenching thirst thereby the target audiences are urged to ask for nothing else other than coca cola when thirsty. This way a clear message is communicated to the target audiences. Fourth, the approach used in this advertisement is appropriate for the media to be used in the sense that once the target audiences see this advertisement either on television or on print media they are likely to get the message easily (Pride et al. 2015, p. 458).

In contrast, I consider the second advertisement to be non-creative because of the following reasons. First, the advertisement does not have a clear target audience because we do not see any group represented on the advertisement. Although this might be a strategy of advertising, it is impossible to develop a product that targets all people. Instead, you should develop an advertisement that targets a specific group of people, which this advertisement does not do. Second, consumers’ behavior is not outright in the second advertisement even if enjoyment can be associated with it. This aspect downplays the creativity of the second advertisement even if majority of the people are familiar with it. Third, with regard to the process of communication, the approach adopted in the second advertisement can be said to be inconsistent with the message being communicated because we are just told of the coke side of life without being told what coca cola can do about it (Armstrong, 2010, p. 279). This way the message is not outright as it is supposed to be in a creative advertisement. Fourth, with regard to strategy of execution, it is highly unlikely that the target audiences will not get the message easily if they see it on television or on print media without any one explaining to them.

Question 3

Brand category

From the brand’s perspective, this advertisement is supposed to drive consumers to drinking fairlife milk so that they can be stylish as the lady on the advertisement. The intended audiences are the people that consume milk because they are the ones that can be diverted from consuming other brands of milk to consuming fairlife milk. The advertisement insinuates that fairlife milk provides more proteins and calcium than any other milk brand. Based on this impression, the advertisement is effective in achieving its objective (Usman 2013, p. 77).

Nevertheless, although the advertisement appears to be effective, it might not be so effective because the lady seems to be wearing a milky dress and to be stepping on milk. This aspect can be offensive to the target audiences especially women who might consider this to be a bad behavior. Accordingly, they might not consume fairlife milk on presumption that it is packaged inappropriately. In this respect, I would improve the advertisement by eliminating the impression that the lady is wearing a milky dress and is stepping on the milk. The article by Johar, Birk and Einwiller (2010, p. 60) used in the critique links to the advertisement and its category in the sense that it broadly addresses crises in advertisement.

Retail category

The objective of this advertisement is to convince the target audiences that the retail outlet that offers these products offers them at low prices. This way, the advertisement tries to create an impression that whenever the target audiences shop from the retail outlet in question, then they are likely to get the best deals. The advertisement targets the general members of the public within the location of the outlet. Although the advertisement appears to be filled up with many sub-advertisements, it is effective in achieving its objective because the products’ prices are likely to attract the target audiences.

In order to improve this advertisement, I would reduce the number of products from each category. For example, rather than putting three huggies on the advertisement, I would put just one and ask the target audiences to look for more offers from the outlet. This would draw the target audiences to the retail outlet. The article by Iyer, Soberman and Villas-Boas (2005, p. 462) used to critique this advertisement links to the critique in the sense that its focus is on making advertisement more focused and result oriented. On the other hand, it links to the retail category because it is broad-based meaning that it covers different categories.

Social media category

From the brand’s perspective, the objective of this advertisement is to inform the target audiences that they can increase their sales by advertising on Facebook or even connecting to it. The impression is that Facebook can generate more sales than Google can do; thus, the target audiences should consider advertising on Facebook to increase their sales (Taskiran & Yilmaz 2015, p. 108). The target audiences are the businesspeople that want to boost their sales. To a great extent, the advertisement can be said to be effective because it delivers a clear message and it is specific to the target audiences. In addition, as opposed to just informing the target audiences that they can boost their sales, the advertisement urges them to find out how they can do it by clicking the “find out how” button.

Although the advertisement is effective, I would improve it by revising the last part of the written message. For example, I would change “. . . and cheaper” to “. . . AND IT IS CHEAPER THAN GOOGLE!” This statement is clearer than the one on the advertisement. The article by Vejacka used in this critique links to the critique in the sense that its focus is on efficiency of Facebook advertisements. Conversely, it links to the category because its focus is on Facebook (Vejacka 2012, p. 116).

Business to business category

The objective of this advertisement is to inform business owners that they can reach over 10,000 homeowners if they contract services from the mailing company advertising itself. As seen from the advertisement, the target audiences are the business owners that want to reach more customers. In relation to the fact that the advertisement has a clear message that targets specific audiences, then the advertisement can be said to be effective in achieving its objective. This notwithstanding, I can improve this advertisement by removing some of the unnecessary writings that may distract some target audiences from going through the advertisement on the basis that there is a lot of materials to read. For example, I would not mention that readers keep on referring to the business guide. Instead, I would urge the target audiences to try the services of the company. Doing this would make the advertisement more specific and clearer than it is right now.

The article by Iyer, Soberman and Villas-Boas (2005, p. 462) used to critique this advertisement links to the critique process in the sense that it tries to encourage advertisers to make their advertisement more focused and clearer. With regard to the advertisement’s category, the article links to this aspect in the sense that it addresses advertising process from a broad perspective thereby it does not limit its scope to one category.

Not-for-profit category

From the brand’s perspective, the objective of this advertisement is to urge the target audiences to donate blood so that they can save life for those at risk of dying for lack of blood. In relation to this objective, the target audiences are the general members of the public that are capable of donating blood. Given that the advertisement has a clear message, then the advertisement can be said to be effective in achieving its objective (Tellis 2009, p. 240).

However, although the advertisement appears to be effective with its clear message, I would improve it by removing the bloody part. I would do this because some target audiences might shy away from donating blood on presumption that they will be like the person on the advertisement. For me, I consider the small white advertisement appearing at the bottom to be an efficient advertisement rather than having the blood-stained face. On the other hand, the article by Iyer, Soberman and Villas-Boas used to critique this advertisement links to the critique process by enabling me to understand the aspects that I should consider in the critique process. With regard to the advertisement’s category, it links to it in the sense that it addresses advertising process from a broad perspective; thus, it does not limit itself to one specific category (Iyer, Soberman & Villas-Boas 2005, p. 461).

Global category

The objective of this advertisement is to influence the target audiences to stop smoking on the basis that smoking destroys their health. The impression is that when the target audiences smoke, they harm their bodies and they are likely to be skinny as the person appearing on the advertisement. Based on the image on the advertisement, the target audiences are the people that smoke even though those intending to start smoking may as well be among the target audiences. In relation to the fact that one gets a clear message by simply looking at the advertisement, then the advertisement can be said to be effective in achieving its objective. In spite of this fact, I can improve it by including some writings on it. Although I would not include lengthy writings, the words that I would include would urge smokers to desist from smoking. For example, I would include words like “stop smoking” or “smoking ruins your health”. These words would go a long way encouraging the target audiences to stop smoking on the basis that they ruin their lives when they smoke. The article by Johar, Birk and Einwiller (2010, p. 58) used in the critique links to the advertisement and its category in the sense that it broadly addresses crises in advertisement.

Question 4

Good Advertisement                                                         Bad Advertisement

The fed up advertisement is a good advertisement because of the following reasons. First, the creative approach used in this advertisement is consistent with the objective in the sense that it compares DHL with FedEx. If you look clearly, you will notice that DHL is asking the FedEx customers whether they are fed up with FedEx. On the presumption that they are fed up, DHL is offering itself as the alternative company (Beard 2012, p. 370). Accordingly, the approach is appropriate for the target audiences because it has a clear and convincing message. Second, the approach in this advertisement does not overwhelm the message in the sense that the message is more outright than the creativity itself. In other words, before the target audiences realize that DHL is comparing itself with FedEx, they first get the message. Third, the creative approach is appropriate for the print media that is likely to be used to reach out the target audiences (Sears 1999, p. 52). Fourth, the creative approach used in this advertisement looks truthful and tasteful in the sense that the target audiences are likely to be convinced that DHL will serve them better than FedEx (Manzur et al. 2012, p. 280).

On the other hand, the second advertisement appears bad to me because of the following reasons. First, the creative approach used in this advertisement does not appear to be consistent with the message strategy. This is in relation to the fact as an advertiser of a bathing soap you would not like to associate your product with blood. In contrast to this expectation, the second advertisement has more bloody scenes than what the product can do. In fact, the stabbed man lying at the background of the advertisement has nothing to do with cleaning hands even if he might have something to do with killing germs. Based on this fact, I do not believe that the creative approach in the second advertisement is consistent with the message though it might try to be consistent with the objective (Armstrong, 2010, p. 279). Furthermore, I do not believe that the creative approach is appropriate for the target audiences. Second, the approach adopted in this advertisement overwhelms the message thereby lacks a clear and convincing message. Third, in relation to the bloody scenes, the advertisement does not look tasteful to watch all the times; thus, the second advertisement is bad.

Question 5

For me, the bad advertisement in question 4 can be improved if the two bloody scenes are removed from the advertisement completely. This means that the rest might remain while the two men should not appear on the advertisement. If this is done, the advert would not be offensive as it is right now with the two men. Ethical practices in advertising recommend for non-offensive messages and images on advertisements. However, if you look at this advertisement, you will realize that it is offensive because of the bloody scenes. Apart from this, the advertisement can be improved by capitalizing on one product rather than trying to advertise two products at the same time. If you look at the advertisement, you will realize that the writings are trying to promote dettol soap, but the most outstanding pictures are trying   to promote dettol antiseptic. This means that the advertisement is targeting two groups of audiences at the same time. Contrary to this practice, the advertisement should focus on promoting one product. For example, dettol antiseptic and the bloody scenes should be removed from the advertisement so that the advertisement can effectively advertise dettol soap. The same way dettol soap should be removed from the advertisement so that dettol antiseptic can be promoted on its own. However, the bloody scenes should be avoided (Armstrong, 2010, p. 279).

References

Armstrong, S., 2010. Persuasive Advertising Evidence-based Principles. New York, Palgrave Macmillan.

Beard, F., 2012. The US advertising industry’s self-regulation of comparative advertising. Journal of historical research in marketing, 4(3): pp. 369-386.

Bertsche, R., 2015. Bic apologizes for controversial ad that sparkled major backlash. [Online] available at: < https://www.yahoo.com/parenting/bic-apologizes-for-controversial-ads-that-spark-126524986832.html> [accessed 26 Sep. 2015]

Hanafizadeh, P. & Behboudi, M., 2012. Online advertising and promotion: modern technologies for marketing. Hershey, PA, Business Science Reference.

Holley, P., 2015. Banned in Britain, ad arrives in N.Y. with a controversial question: ‘are you beach body ready?’ [Online] available at: <http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/05/30/banned-in-britain-ad-arrives-in-n-y-with-a-controversial-question-are-you-beach-body-ready/> [accessed 26 Sep. 2015].

Iyer, G., Soberman, D. & Villas-Boas, J., 2005. The targeting of advertising. Marketing science, 24(3): 461-476.

Johar, G., Birk, M. & Einwiller, S., 2010. How to save your brand in the face of crisis. MITSloan management review, 51(4): pp. 57-64.

Manzur, E. et al. 2012. Comparative advertising effectiveness in Latin America: evidence from Chile. International marketing review, 29(3): pp. 277-298.

Pride, W. et al. 2015.Marketing principles. South Melbourne, Vic. Cengage Learning.

Sears, S., 1999. How to improve sales with online banner ads. TWICE, 14(1): pp. 52.

Stunt, A. (2015). Pancreatic cancer action: why we ran a controversial ad campaign. [Online] available at: < http://www.theguardian.com/voluntary-sector-network/2014/feb/12/pancreatic-cancer-action-controversial-advert> [accessed 26 Sep. 2015].

Taskiran, N. & Yilmaz, R., 2015. Handbook of research on effective advertising strategies in the social media age. Hershey, PA : Business Science Reference.

Tellis, G., 2009. Generalization about advertising effectiveness in markets. Journal of advertising research, 49(2): pp. 240-245.

Usman, M., 2013. Creation of effective advertising in the persuasion of target audience. International journal of economic, finance and management, 2(1): pp. 77-82.

Vejacka, M., 2012. Facebook advertising and its efficiency on the Slovak market. E+M Ekonomie a management, 1: pp. 116-127.