Monday, March 1st, 2010
What sounds better? Music played from a CD on a high fidelity stereo or music played through an MP3 player or iPod? According to research conducted at Stanford University by Professor Jonathan Berger, today’s iPod generation prefers the sound of digital music. For the past eight years students have participated in an experiment where they rated a variety of audio formats while listening to the same song. He found that in fact, over time, there was an increase in preference for the music played digitally. Their experience changed their perception.
In 1913 the Italian psychologist Mario Ponzo created this image and illusion, where the top line appears to be longer. 100 years ago, he thought it was because how our brain interpreted the space on either side of the lower line. However, new theories on how the brain works suggest the perception is due to our experience. In this case, our experience tells us that the vertical lines are receding, like train tracks, meaning that the horizontal line at the top is longer. Not the case – but it is our perception.
These findings remind me that all consumers have past experiences that help define their reactions and decisions. Knowing just where they are coming from will help us move them in a new direction. The iPod generation believes that digital music is great, not to mention they can carry thousands of songs in a device the size of a match book. Oh, do you remember those? Matchbooks – a great advertising tool from the 1940s.
Tags: consumer experience, consumer perception, marketing trends
Posted in 2010 | No Comments »
Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010
Yesterday while reading the ever serious Harvard Business Review, I really quacked up.
A piece expertly written by the CEO of Aflac, Daniel P. Amos entitled “How He Fell for the Duck“ was the culprit. It was about how he fell for the duck, how the duck grew the business and how the duck went global. It reminded me how important it is to approach marketing with an open mind.
Not that a duck, or for that matter a gecko is right for every client’s marketing campaign, but being safe usually is not a big winner either. In marketing moving forward with calculated risk is a good thing.
Calculated? Think of a game of bridge. It is defined as a game of skill and chance. Decisions are made based on the players’ knowledge of what has already transpired and their tactical abilities. The style and demeanor of each team factors into the play, and of course the luck of the draw. In marketing we are faced with much of the same challenges.
1. Know the market – What has already transpired and what is the projected environment?
2. Recognize the advantages – What makes your company/product/service special?
3. Study the consumer – What are their motivations and why are they relevant?
4. Set objectives – What are the desired results of the campaign?
All these questions help assess risk. But how much risk should you take? Mr. Amos said, “Don’t risk a lot for a little; don’t risk more than you can afford to lose; and consider the odds.” The duck debuted on New Year’s Day 2000. If you are risk adverse, play it safe. Puppies and cute babies are always a sure bet.
Tags: advertising, global marketing, marketing, risk
Posted in 2010 | No Comments »