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How Coke Beats Pepsi: Top-Of-Mind-Awareness in Marketing

How Coke Beats Pepsi: Top-Of-Mind-Awareness in Marketing

How Coke Beats Pepsi: Top-Of-Mind-Awareness in Marketing

Let’s play a game. I’ll name five categories and you tell me the brand that comes to your mind first upon hearing the category. Game?

Athletic shoes. Cell phone. Beer. Lingerie. Soft drinks.

Chances are you answered the following, in order: Nike, iPhone, Budweiser, Victoria’s Secret, Coke.

There may be some variance in your answers and mine, but these products, in one way or another, always manage to find their names on top of the consumers’ favorites list, just like it did on mine. It’s safe to say these brands have earned their way into our collective “top-of-mind” awareness.

“Top of mind awareness” is a term coined by Ellis Verdi, former president of the National Retail Advertisers Council in the US.  He observed that most marketers wrongfully seek to achieve their promotional objectives through discounting, a short term cash flow solution. The problem with discounting, he said, was that it diminishes the value of the product. Unlike discounting, however, top of mind awareness influences consumers to think of your business or product first to fulfill their needs above all others. 

Let’s take Coke, for example. In one of the most popular, intriguing, and sometimes, personal product rivalries since product rivalries were documented, Coca Cola and Pepsi Cola have both been jockeying for position as the “top-of-mind” product in the carbonated beverage business. The competition is so stiff it was dubbed the “cola wars”. For more than a century the two companies have tried to one-up each other in every marketing “P” there is: product, price, promotion, positioning, packaging, place, and even people.

There will always be people whose top-of-mind product is Pepsi, in the same way that there are those who only think of Coke, but if being top-of-mind translates directly to market share, then Coke is the clear winner here. According to the latest stats, Coke has a market share of around 40%, while Pepsi’s is at 30%.

So what’s Coke’s secret?

coca-cola-862689_1280

First, we should agree that when we buy something, be it a car, a designer bag, pizza, or soda, the decision making process is the same: we choose products based on how high we rank them in our subconscious. Of course, the rankings are affected by many factors (quality, price, etc) and there’s a tiny caveat: being top of mind does not translate to sales, but the higher the brand is up there, the better it is for business.

While the concept is pretty simple to grasp, the journey from being a mere brand to becoming a top-of-mind brand is more of an uphill climb. But if you know how the right approaches, you’ll get to the top and realize the view from there is a lot better. Ask Coke.

Here’s how.

Be Different (in a good way)

I remember a line I once told a girl I courted in college. She was quite popular in the campus, and just broke up with an equally popular guy. When it was time to lay my card on the table, I told her, “I am not better. I am not worse. I am just different.” We had a good four-year run before immaturity caught up with us, but I sure had her at “I am just different”.

Just as no guy would tell the object of his affection that he is not good enough or that he’s a total jerk and a klutz, too, no brand would go out and tell people their product is not excellent or the best. No company would dare tell consumers they don’t have the best service. All good marketing hinges on making customers believe that you are selling the best, cheapest, most durable and so on. So yeah, tell them you have the best product, but differentiate your brand from your competitors by focusing on an area that they do not have. Find something in your product that sets it apart from others. Is the price that does not compromise quality? Is it your unique formula/component/ingredient? Is it the great after sales service and customer support? Whatever it is, find it and focus on it.

Coke was not just different. It was the first of its kind, so it had a big lead in the awareness department. Later on, when Pepsi was threatening to catch up, it changed its image. It even created a different bottle – the patented contoured bottle – just so Pepsi will have no choice but stick to the boring plain bottle.

Related: Marketing Trend in Asia That Will Still Work in 2016

Exposure, exposure, exposure.

Coke First Ads (Photo: thedayintech.files.wordpress.com)

It’s a no-brainer. The more often you tell people about something, the more familiar it becomes to them. Genius! I mean, there’s a reason everybody knows who Leonardo DiCaprio and Lady Gaga are. Or what an iPhone or Viagra is. Either via good or bad publicity, these brands have been ingrained in the consumers’ subconscious. Sometimes, exposure and repetition function interchangeably. Even psychology says repetition kind of mesmerizes the brain. That’s why the advertising industry is a multi-billion dollar juggernaut – experts know how much product exposure affects people’s buying patterns.

As early as 1900 (Coke was in the market in 1886), Coke had popular musician Hilda Clark endorse the product. Later on, popular baseball players joined the long list of endorsers. By 1906, it signed a 50-year contract with an ad company. Even when Pepsi was just a fledgling company, Coke was already thinking about exposure.

Related: Get Better Marketing Exposure and Expand your Multi National Company Business in Asia

Stay in their consciousness.

Even tougher than getting exposure and getting in people’s consciousness is staying there. See, not everybody who sees your brand today will buy your product now. According to a study, 34% or more than a third of consumers buy a product (a major purchase, such as a car or an expensive appliance) between seven and 12 months from the time they first considered buying it. In this regard, “top of mind” awareness is owning the time between the potential consumer is first considering buying the product up to the moment he or she finally decides to buy it. Sometimes, it really takes some nurturing. How? Once you have identified a prospective consumer, stay in touch, but don’t pester him/her. Be helpful by giving out free information about the product or any way you thing the customer can benefit from.

Case Study: How to Turn Targets to Sales – Ready Leads with a 50% Shorter Lead Nurturing Cycle

While this does not hold true for soft drinks, Coke still made conscious efforts to stay in the consumers’ consciousness by making sure the name Coke is heard as often as possible by as many people as possible.

In 1950, Coke rolled out its first TV commercial – several spots during a 30-minute Thanksgiving special.

Three years later, “Coke Time” debuts on both radio and television, and in 1961, it finally appeared in a feature film. Clearly, Coke knew how to turn its product into a household name.

Related: Every Lead is Special (The Callbox Lead Nurturing Tool)

Connect with customers.

“Top of the mind” isn’t reserved to products with a global reach and millions of dollars in advertising budget. Look around you. Surely, there are little home-grown companies that have made an indelible mark on its local customers in a way that makes them top of the mind, albeit locally.

In my city, there’s a couple of Starbucks stores a couple of minutes away from each other. Yes, they’re popular, in the sense that it is “top-of-mind” when my lawyer friend asks where to meet up for coffee. But most of the time, say, when I’m by my lonesome, I go to this quaint local coffee shop that has been around half a century before Starbucks arrived. The reason? It has gained a following from local customers because through the years, it has formed a connection that even Starbucks’ combination of personalized paper cups and Caramel Macchiato cannot replicate. People across all social strata can relate to it because, to a degree, it embodied the characteristics of the people in the community: resilient, humble, laid back. Of course, it didn’t hurt that the coffee costs a fraction of the Starbucks’ cheapest, and tasted great, too. When people can identify with your product, you will be “top-of-mind”.

Perhaps the most telling factor in Coke’s dominance over Pepsi is the fact that it connected better with the consumers.

Photo Credit: PopandRoll

Coke’s marketing campaigns, slogans, and ads had a more human touch – they appealed to the emotion and tugged at the heartstrings. It placed very high value on family and friendships and relationships in general, and it resonated with everybody.

Taste the Feeling – Coke Latest Marketing Slogan in 2016

In the end, Coke knew that to be top-of-mind, first, you have to be top-of-heart.

 Photo Credit: s2.glbimg.comwww.coca-colacompany.com

 

Improve marketing campaign with multi-channel  marketing strategy

and get customers in Singapore!

Dial +65 3159.1112

Grab a copy of our FREE EBOOK, Why You Should Bet Your Money on Digital Marketing (And Win)! We brainstormed ideas, analyzed data, and interpreted recent developments vis-à-vis previous trends before coming up with a realistic view of this year’s marketing trend.Why You Should Bet Your Money on Digital Marketing (And Win)

How Coke Beats Pepsi: Top-Of-Mind-Awareness in Marketing

How Coke Beats Pepsi: Top-Of-Mind-Awareness in Marketing

How Coke Beats Pepsi: Top-Of-Mind-Awareness in Marketing

Let’s play a game. I’ll name five categories and you tell me the brand that comes to your mind first upon hearing the category. Game?

Athletic shoes. Cell phone. Beer. Lingerie. Soft drinks.

Chances are you answered the following, in order: Nike, iPhone, Budweiser, Victoria’s Secret, Coke.

There may be some variance in your answers and mine, but these products, in one way or another, always manage to find their names on top of the consumers’ favorites list, just like it did on mine. It’s safe to say these brands have earned their way into our collective “top-of-mind” awareness.

“Top of mind awareness” is a term coined by Ellis Verdi, former president of the National Retail Advertisers Council in the US.  He observed that most marketers wrongfully seek to achieve their promotional objectives through discounting, a short term cash flow solution. The problem with discounting, he said, was that it diminishes the value of the product. Unlike discounting, however, top of mind awareness influences consumers to think of your business or product first to fulfill their needs above all others. 

Let’s take Coke, for example. In one of the most popular, intriguing, and sometimes, personal product rivalries since product rivalries were documented, Coca Cola and Pepsi Cola have both been jockeying for position as the “top-of-mind” product in the carbonated beverage business. The competition is so stiff it was dubbed the “cola wars”. For more than a century the two companies have tried to one-up each other in every marketing “P” there is: product, price, promotion, positioning, packaging, place, and even people.

There will always be people whose top-of-mind product is Pepsi, in the same way that there are those who only think of Coke, but if being top-of-mind translates directly to market share, then Coke is the clear winner here. According to the latest stats, Coke has a market share of around 40%, while Pepsi’s is at 30%.

So what’s Coke’s secret?

coca-cola-862689_1280

First, we should agree that when we buy something, be it a car, a designer bag, pizza, or soda, the decision making process is the same: we choose products based on how high we rank them in our subconscious. Of course, the rankings are affected by many factors (quality, price, etc) and there’s a tiny caveat: being top of mind does not translate to sales, but the higher the brand is up there, the better it is for business.

While the concept is pretty simple to grasp, the journey from being a mere brand to becoming a top-of-mind brand is more of an uphill climb. But if you know how the right approaches, you’ll get to the top and realize the view from there is a lot better. Ask Coke.

Here’s how.

Be Different (in a good way)

I remember a line I once told a girl I courted in college. She was quite popular in the campus, and just broke up with an equally popular guy. When it was time to lay my card on the table, I told her, “I am not better. I am not worse. I am just different.” We had a good four-year run before immaturity caught up with us, but I sure had her at “I am just different”.

Just as no guy would tell the object of his affection that he is not good enough or that he’s a total jerk and a klutz, too, no brand would go out and tell people their product is not excellent or the best. No company would dare tell consumers they don’t have the best service. All good marketing hinges on making customers believe that you are selling the best, cheapest, most durable and so on. So yeah, tell them you have the best product, but differentiate your brand from your competitors by focusing on an area that they do not have. Find something in your product that sets it apart from others. Is the price that does not compromise quality? Is it your unique formula/component/ingredient? Is it the great after sales service and customer support? Whatever it is, find it and focus on it.

Coke was not just different. It was the first of its kind, so it had a big lead in the awareness department. Later on, when Pepsi was threatening to catch up, it changed its image. It even created a different bottle – the patented contoured bottle – just so Pepsi will have no choice but stick to the boring plain bottle.

Related: Marketing Trend in Asia That Will Still Work in 2016

Exposure, exposure, exposure.

Coke First Ads (Photo: thedayintech.files.wordpress.com)

It’s a no-brainer. The more often you tell people about something, the more familiar it becomes to them. Genius! I mean, there’s a reason everybody knows who Leonardo DiCaprio and Lady Gaga are. Or what an iPhone or Viagra is. Either via good or bad publicity, these brands have been ingrained in the consumers’ subconscious. Sometimes, exposure and repetition function interchangeably. Even psychology says repetition kind of mesmerizes the brain. That’s why the advertising industry is a multi-billion dollar juggernaut – experts know how much product exposure affects people’s buying patterns.

As early as 1900 (Coke was in the market in 1886), Coke had popular musician Hilda Clark endorse the product. Later on, popular baseball players joined the long list of endorsers. By 1906, it signed a 50-year contract with an ad company. Even when Pepsi was just a fledgling company, Coke was already thinking about exposure.

Related: Get Better Marketing Exposure and Expand your Multi National Company Business in Asia

Stay in their consciousness.

Even tougher than getting exposure and getting in people’s consciousness is staying there. See, not everybody who sees your brand today will buy your product now. According to a study, 34% or more than a third of consumers buy a product (a major purchase, such as a car or an expensive appliance) between seven and 12 months from the time they first considered buying it. In this regard, “top of mind” awareness is owning the time between the potential consumer is first considering buying the product up to the moment he or she finally decides to buy it. Sometimes, it really takes some nurturing. How? Once you have identified a prospective consumer, stay in touch, but don’t pester him/her. Be helpful by giving out free information about the product or any way you thing the customer can benefit from.

Case Study: How to Turn Targets to Sales – Ready Leads with a 50% Shorter Lead Nurturing Cycle

While this does not hold true for soft drinks, Coke still made conscious efforts to stay in the consumers’ consciousness by making sure the name Coke is heard as often as possible by as many people as possible.

In 1950, Coke rolled out its first TV commercial – several spots during a 30-minute Thanksgiving special.

Three years later, “Coke Time” debuts on both radio and television, and in 1961, it finally appeared in a feature film. Clearly, Coke knew how to turn its product into a household name.

Related: Every Lead is Special (The Callbox Lead Nurturing Tool)

Connect with customers.

“Top of the mind” isn’t reserved to products with a global reach and millions of dollars in advertising budget. Look around you. Surely, there are little home-grown companies that have made an indelible mark on its local customers in a way that makes them top of the mind, albeit locally.

In my city, there’s a couple of Starbucks stores a couple of minutes away from each other. Yes, they’re popular, in the sense that it is “top-of-mind” when my lawyer friend asks where to meet up for coffee. But most of the time, say, when I’m by my lonesome, I go to this quaint local coffee shop that has been around half a century before Starbucks arrived. The reason? It has gained a following from local customers because through the years, it has formed a connection that even Starbucks’ combination of personalized paper cups and Caramel Macchiato cannot replicate. People across all social strata can relate to it because, to a degree, it embodied the characteristics of the people in the community: resilient, humble, laid back. Of course, it didn’t hurt that the coffee costs a fraction of the Starbucks’ cheapest, and tasted great, too. When people can identify with your product, you will be “top-of-mind”.

Perhaps the most telling factor in Coke’s dominance over Pepsi is the fact that it connected better with the consumers.

Photo Credit: PopandRoll

Coke’s marketing campaigns, slogans, and ads had a more human touch – they appealed to the emotion and tugged at the heartstrings. It placed very high value on family and friendships and relationships in general, and it resonated with everybody.

Taste the Feeling – Coke Latest Marketing Slogan in 2016

In the end, Coke knew that to be top-of-mind, first, you have to be top-of-heart.

 Photo Credit: s2.glbimg.comwww.coca-colacompany.com

 

Improve marketing campaign with multi-channel  marketing strategy

and get customers in Singapore!

Dial +65 3159.1112

Grab a copy of our FREE EBOOK, Why You Should Bet Your Money on Digital Marketing (And Win)! We brainstormed ideas, analyzed data, and interpreted recent developments vis-à-vis previous trends before coming up with a realistic view of this year’s marketing trend.Why You Should Bet Your Money on Digital Marketing (And Win)

Influencer Marketing for B2B- Tips and Tricks
Myths About Marketing and Sales Outsourcing in Singapore (Featured Image)
Event Marketing in Singapore: Trends to Expect by 2020
marketing strategy

Understand your Singapore Market by Dissecting It

marketing strategy

We in the B2B marketing industry are fond of throwing around metaphors to describe how ferocious and contested it is to engage our target markets. But as executives in the IT services sector see their market as a battlefield of technical jargon and healthcare marketers see their arena as a merciless valley of risks, these metaphors are actually far from what their markets really are: as organisms.

Back in high school, our biology classes involved capturing an animal and dissecting it for the purpose of having a better look at its anatomical structure and its importance to the animal’s survival. Moral considerations aside (after all, we’re dealing with metaphors here), dissecting a frog enables us to understand not just the mechanisms that allow it to jump very long distances, but also its biological make up in relation to its surroundings. We can use such information in, say, creating artificial ecosystems that precisely mimic its natural home.

But where does marketing fit in all this? Just like the frogs we abduct, markets have examinable qualities that describe how it behaves in any given situation. Knowing these qualities is no helpful in terms of finding opportunities.

In this Business 2 Community article, David Cameron Gikandi offers a guide of 11 characteristics you could find in a market with high potentials.

 

#1 Size.

The bigger the market size, the better.

#2 Urgency.

The more urgently people need the products in that market, the better. For example, pet rocks have no urgency, but medication does.

#3 Speed to market.

The faster you can go from getting the initial idea to beginning to make sales, the better.

#4 High pricing potential.

The higher you can charge per product, the better.

#5 Low cost of acquiring new customers.

The easier and cheaper it is to get new customers, the better.

#6 Low cost and ease of delivering.

The cheaper and easier it is to deliver your product, the better.

#7 Uniqueness.

The more unique your product is (or how you deliver it, or how you package it), the better.

#8 Low upfront investment.

The fewer resources you need to test the market, build the business and get started, the better.

#9 Back-end and up-sell potential.

The more related products you can sell to your existing clients, the better. You don’t want to go into business whereby you can only sell one product one time to each customer and then that’s it. There is no growth potential there. You need to be able to repeatedly sell the same customer.

#10 Evergreen potential.

The easier it is to continue selling and selling once in business, the better. For example, a product that can be sold forever, like toilet paper or cooking oil, is better than one that is sold just once, like pet rocks.

#11 Addressability.

The easier it is to reach and communicate with your market, the better. For example, does your market congregate in “pools” like mailing lists or radio stations or places you can get access to?

By understanding this, we can create a lead generation strategy that will work.

 

 

Sign up for The Savvy Marketer

and get more Singapore B2B Marketing Tips & Strategies

 Dial +65 3159.1112

 

 

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The Greatest Marketing Strategy Question: Inbound or Outbound?

The Greatest Marketing Strategy Question: Inbound or Outbound?

The Greatest Marketing Strategy Question: Inbound or Outbound?

Coke and Pepsi have been battling for the best cola title for more than a century now, and both soda behemoths continuously struggle to beat each other not just on the aspect of product development but marketing strategies as well. Thus the rivalry could get so personal at times, taking things to a wider rift like exposes of product ingredients, comparison on marketing expansion across continents, merger, and creation of sub-beverage brands.

Apparently, the marketing strategy issue “which marketing strategy works best: inbound or outbound?” is no different from the cola war. Each has its own argument to prove best over the other. Let’s take a look at Ironpaper’s short notes first on both strategies and some statistics to see who reigns in the marketing world.

Outbound includes outdoor advertising, direct mails, trade shows, seminars, email blasts and cold calling. Marketers push their message out to draw target customers in and is quite hard to measure.

Related: Outbound Marketing: Reaching out to your Target Market

Inbound Marketing, on the other hand, uses content marketing, blogging, and social media to bring possible customers into their business, and which is easy to measure.

Related: The Anatomy of an Effective Landing Page for APAC Businesses [INFOGRAPHIC]

And when we compare statistics on how marketing experts perceive these two competing strategies, Inbound has the upper hand:

InboundOutbound
Marketing efforts are effective68%48%
Gave A Higher ROI46%12%
Produces sales-ready leads59%16%
Lead generation has improved over the year59%16%

Although Outbound was the pioneering marketing strategy in the world of business, current data shows that more marketers now prefer to use Inbound tactics. The decline in Outbound marketing popularity and usage is due to the rapid rise of social media which allows brands to take advantage of “real-time marketing”, as per Hubspot.

However, we cannot completely ditch Outbound due to reasons below:

  • Consider mixing the two strategies when expanding into a new geographical region to cater both digital and traditional customers
  • Outbound, though deemed to be more costly than inbound marketing, has magical effects that leave images or tunes in the customer’s subconscious for a long time, e.g. Coca Cola vintage Christmas ads

Coca Cola Vintage Christmas Ad

Or Pepsi’s celebrity ad endorsements

Pepsi Celebrity Ad

 

Related: Real Talk: B2B Outbound Telemarketing is still Effective

 

Inbound marketing may have taken toll over Outbound, but despite its dominance, the fact remains that outbound can’t yet be taken out of the marketing picture because some experts still believe that it is the best marketing strategy for their type of business and apparently look at each strategy with pros and cons.

So, what’s the best cola for you? Pepsi or Coke?

 

 

Sign up for The Savvy Marketer

and get more Singapore B2B Marketing Tips & Strategies

 Dial +65 3159.1112

 

 

Grab a copy of our FREE EBOOK, The Ultimate Lead Generation Kit Ebook! Updated with links to the best and latest techniques that will help generate quality sales leads for your business

New and Improved Ultimate Lead Generation Kit to Jumpstart your Business! for FREE

Influencer Marketing for B2B- Tips and Tricks
Myths About Marketing and Sales Outsourcing in Singapore (Featured Image)
Event Marketing in Singapore: Trends to Expect by 2020

 

6 Tips for a More Effective Remarketing Strategy

When marketers take into account the potential of previous leads that didn’t end up converted, chances become doubled. Since these leads already underwent the initial phases of your sales funnel (first contact, introduction of product or service, exchange of information), they are more easily guided into (re)considering the transaction.

After all, it’s always sweeter the second time around, so they say.

Rekindling these “relationships” with warm leads also send a message to the industry that your business makes necessary efforts to connect with its target market and beyond. But how do you carry out an effective remarketing move?

To answer that, here is an excerpt from a post at OnlineMarketingInsitute.org:

  • Set clear objectives. It’s as true for remarketing as it is with any marketing practice: it’s hard to measure success without clear goals. Instead of coming up with a generic remarketing plan and then hoping for some good to come of it, establish super-specific, tangible goals you want to achieve.
  • Test everything. You’ll see the best results from remarketing when you test every campaign you try. Track results on your PPC remarketing campaign for a set period of time, then change something (the call-to-action, the wording, the landing page for ads, etc.) to see how the results change. Keep conducting these trials and you’ll gain insight into what works best.
  • Segment specific audiences. Set up website metrics that collect specific audiences from your site’s existing traffic – people who spend a certain amount of time on a specific product page, people who exit at the call-to-action page, etc. This establishes targeted groups to which you may remarket later.
  • Create custom messages. Craft your messages to your established targeted groups. Don’t use the same call-to-action or the same advertising style with every group. Rather, take time to evaluate and analyze the needs and interests of those particular users.
  • Limit your ads. To avoid annoying followers or turning off your audience, implement limits as to how and when your remarketing efforts will display. For online ads, for example, you can limit the impressions your ads make to fans – allowing them to show a certain number of times a day.
  • Use remarketing in multiple formats. There is more than one way to use remarketing, so don’t let yourself get locked into the box of thinking it’s only about Google AdWords or only about your PPC campaigns. There is also email remarketing, site remarketing, search remarketing, social media remarketing, etc. Each one presents potential value for converting specific groups of leads into customers.

Read the full post at http://www.onlinemarketinginstitute.org/blog/2014/02/6-best-practices-in-remarketing/#sthash.NcRa6irv.dpuf