Monday, 28 November 2011

| Feel Good Progress |

After meeting in our team and discussing we quickly decided that we wanted to steer away from the TV advert campaign as it has been done before a few times and we wanted to create something a little different. The main issues identified that we plan to offer a solution to is the brand being unknown, the exclusiveness of the brand and the fact that it is hard to track down. The Feel Good Drinks Company are on Facebook and Twitter quite a lot and reaching people through a means of technology and since the techno age is increasingly advancing and people are getting more involved with it we thought this was the right approach to raise more awareness. So we decided that we would quite like to create an app. Many people particularly in our target age range (16-34) have iphones, ipads, ipod touchs or android phones - all of which support the app feature. The idea for the app was to create perhaps 3 games, give discounts off the bottles of juice and to inform the viewer where to buy it nearest where they are at that moment. It could also include the ingredients/calorie counter if that would attract more people (thinking more of the weight conscious females) 
We thought for the games we could create a fun one, a nostalgic/addictive one and a rip off one. We were thinking then of a would people then hear about the app? What would make them want to download it? We think that the company should send out reps on stalls in shopping malls, student unions, on campus' to promote the app by giving out little business cards in the shape of the Feel Good bottle with a discount price off the app encouraging people to purchase it. Also the reps could give out leaflets that will inform the people of all that is in the juice and include a sample of the juice so people can try it for themselves. The company are pretty confident that as soon as people taste the drink they will like it, so our job is just to help make that happen and so this is the way we plan to tackle it by letting people try it, for most it'll be for the first time, and encouraging them to get involved with the game and the offers that could give them by getting involved with that. The game will entice the players by being addictive hopefully and then reward the players after certain levels or due to a certain number of points achieved with a QR code (or similar) that they can then scan in store to receive a a free bottle of juice or at a discounted price. Players may be also able to play against each other through their phones and then the joint effort means they get a joint offer at the end of '2 for 1' and such likes..

One of our main aims  is to make the brand more widely recognisable and to get people to try it so that they may want to buy more. An app that is cheap people will want to download, and especially if people are talking about it, if the publicity is a success... Also free samples - students or anyone go mad for. An issue students struggle with is to keep them buying the drinks at a cheaper rate they can play the game to achieve those rewards that allow them the buy the juice at a cheaper rate. But many students and certainly those within that age group that are working won't mind paying once they have tried it..hence the free sample.

So keeping up with the latest trends in techonology, and sending out the vibe that it isn't just for businessmen in Costa to drink but appearing on student campus' targets better at that audience. Also the app having the feature that tells you where to buy it nearby, then if people want it they will go to a place that sells it. At the minute it is only available in certain stores but the more popular the drink became - it may be more available in more stores.
 This an example drawing of one game FruitFall (sounds like Fruitful..get it?)

We have a few ideas for the games but until finally decided and drawn this space :)

Sunday, 20 November 2011

| Project Brief..initial thoughts |

After meeting up with my team, or should I say 'agency', last week we got together to brainstorm and come up with initial ideas for our brief. The Feel Good Drinks company actually had 2 briefs within. One of which was entitled 'make us famous' so simply in a word, awareness is what they want. Creating a campaign including their name, bottles of juice and to promote that they are filled with pure goodness. The other brief was to come up with an idea to communicate that this drink is 'fruit and not sugar'. So ultimately when people see it in the chill amongst many other drinks and competitors such as Drench, This Water, Volvic fruits etc they have the informed information already in their head to want to pick Feel Good above the others. I think we are going to intertwine the briefs.

The initial idea that came to my head was to have fruits being active and perhaps competing against sugar cubes. Then we all thought this was quite a good theme with the Olympic games 2012 just around the corner.. Even though we couldn't mention the Olympics, London etc as Feel Good is not a sponser, we could still take sports events as our theme and it would fit in nicely with everyone wanting to be more active around the time of the Olympics. Kind of like the way every local tennis club has a fresh surge of interest around the time of Wimbledon...

So we thought up a lots of sports events, i.e diving, running, tennis, high jump etc and also the fruits that are included in the, mango, orange, lemon, cranberry, lime, blueberry, grape, pineapple and bananas etc. We started to doodle just a number of things that came to our head that the fruit could be doing that could be quite funny... We thought of the fruits diving off a diving board into the juice doing all sorts of flips and the sugar cubes could be rubbish and actually miss the the juice....or they could belly flop in some other water... Maybe playing tennis the fruit could be the tennis players batting about a sugar cube as the ball and with every hit it starts to dissolve and disappear showing the fruits counteracts the sugar.

We also thought of the kind of things that could be part of our campaign. We are starting to think at the minute of not having TV ad's but we may go back to that...At the minute we are thinking of having a series of posters with images like the ones I described a little above. Posters are a huge hit around university campus' and in halls and a large percentage of the target market could potentially be students. We thought of giving away free t-shirts as free advertising kind of what like Domino's Pizza do and every time I see someone wearing those tshirts I fancy some pizza or I'm reminded of the Two for Tuesday offer. It's just having the brand out there that people can almost subconsciously take in. A huge part of why people don't buy it is possibly because they have never tried it, and why try something new when you may not like it..what a waste of money... Feel Good stated themselves they believe that once people try their juice they will fall in love, it's just getting people to try it. So we were thinking about the idea of creating some sort of leaflet/flyer that could be handed out on campus', in shopping malls and on the back or attached somewhere is a free small sample of the juice in a small carton form with straw, or attached in a kind of frube shape packaging. So this way more people will get to sample the juice and either think 'nah, it's not for me' or as Feel Good confidently state, people will love it and want to buy more. WIN! In this format people aren't as likely to throw it away at the next bin they come across because there is freebee's involved. Even if they didn't necessarily want the juice at that moment they might fling it in their bag for later. Even that is a success.

The company are quite technologically savvy in that they are on facebook and twitter and have quite an interactive website, also the target audience they are aiming at is the generation where they are always somehow or in someway connected to the internet quite a lot. It seems to be the way we work. Even things that were a whole mornings task before like going to the supermarket, is now all online, purely for convenience. So what about creating an app for iphones/ipads and android phones, seeing as nearly everyone within the target audience age 16-34 age group has one, that includes an interactive game that people go made for. The way Angry Birds took off. Why not create a game that is simple, yet so annoyingly addictive. Maybe along the lines of tetris but this time it's falling fruit and you have to catch them in your bottle as you move it across the screen? And also what about the ability to drag the fruits you like into the bottle and by physically shaking your phone it mixes up the fruits and tells you the flavour that is most likely to suit your taste buds. What about even clicking on the app tells you where the nearest store to you at that precise moment is that sells it. Convenient?

Word of mouth/word on the street is a powerful thing. I almost feel like that phrase should be changed now to something like 'word on the net' because although people still spread gossip by catching up face to face - a lot of that talking and catching up is done online now. Either via text, email, facebook, twitter...that is how word spreads fastest. So if our ideas can help Feel Good tap into that market more then BOOM! everyone will want some. Maybe even after reading this blog post you will feel like you need to try some so see why it claims to be so nice...

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

| And I'm Feeling....Gooood. |

So today I had the urge to treat myself to a Feel Good Drink..also because it is the brand I'm looking to create an advertising campaign for. I headed into town to Costa Coffee where I was informed it was sold. I was surprised to only find 2 flavours available in the shop, Orange & Mango or Cloudy Lemon. There were a few other similar drinks sold such as Innocent Smoothies, Johnsons Juice Co. but I noticed they were not placed side by side in the chill (if that made any difference) What I did notice about Feel Good flavours was that the Cloudy Lemon flavour was most popular. I myself enjoy cloudy lemonade so I thought this would be a nice healthy equivilent. Although I was unsure at first because I know lemon flavour can be quite tart and bitter and they plastered all over the bottle about there being no added sugar so would it be too bitter? To my delight it was a lovely taste. The bottle tells me it is 60% fruit juice and some water + fruit extracts. It is simple natural. It was maybe slightly more expensive than you're typical bottle of juice at £1.80, but not extortionate. Bearing in mind though that was in Costa may be sold cheaper in Tesco or Asda.

The brief said that their customers are never disappointed in the juice, it's just not very well known. So how can we raise awareness for this brand? The company seem to be full of life, humorous, cheeky, sociable, live life on the brightside type of people, the target audience for this juice. What makes people feel good? What makes people laugh? Why should people choose Feel Good? 

Meeting with my agency tomorrow to discuss this space...

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

| Tweens + Brands |

Forming the bonds between tweens and brands_
Real brand loyalty needs strong foundations and you need to create a strong attitudinal foundation before you can truly become loyal to your brands. To be successful in the long run, a brand must find a dimension that will give it an edge over the competition, be it rational or emotional. Establishing advantage by tapping into real emotional needs can create a far stronger bond. For example many kid's brands seek advantage through accompanying peripherals, rather than the product itself. For instance, toy manufacturers are launching state of the art battling tops in the U.S. riding on their success in Japan. Hasbro's Beyblades has its own animated television show, whole Bandai's robotic shaped Cyclonian tops come with comic books detailing each top's characteristics. The problem with this type of advantage is that it is relatively short lived and commits the manufacturer to a continuing cycle of add-ons and news - which is why emotional needs are far stronger.

How do people bond with brands? They reach a degree of attachment to it that excludes other brands from their frame of mind. The underlying causes of this attachment will be unique to a brand, but all successful brands achieve it in some way. On average, people who are bonded to a brand are nearly 10 times more likely to buy it than those who do not make it to presence.

Exploring tweens relationships with adult brands_
Kids are exposed to adult brands every day so perhaps they develop fixed ideas about what they want even earlier than the teen years. For the research in my book they looked at two particular topics: cars and fashion. When kids were asked what one thing did they most want that you're parents are reluctant to buy? 4% of 12-13 year olds said a car! This figure rose to 38% amongst the 16-18 year olds. Tweens are more interested as a whole in fashion. A minority of them claim to buy their own clothes buy the majority rely on their parents to pay for them. When asked who chooses the specific brand, however, just over half the UK tweens said that they did. The lack of control over the actual purchase can lead to frustration for some.These interests are well established at nine years old. Interest in fashionable clothes develops more as the kids grow older, but starts pretty high for girls.

Adults and kids develop relationships with brands in similar ways. While this is true of tweens in relation to their own brands, do the principles hold good when kids think about more adult brands like cars or fashion? the answer must be yes. They still form opinions and attitudes about adult brands, although their perceptions or performance and advantage may differ from an adult's. In the research collected in this book, they found out one-third of global tweens were bonded to a fashion brand. They wanted to wear the brand and had a strong, positive attitude towards it.

It's amazing these days how tweens are so absorbed and obsessed by what they are wearing and how they are perceived? Why it is they care so much at so young an age? The ever changing, constant pressure, increased awareness of self esteem of this world is to blame. Tweens seems to far more aware these days of how they look than even I was at around the age of 11..The media has a major influence. TV shows, adverts, music vids, perfume adverts, clothing ad's etc etc are pouring out and are getting absorbed by the innocent eyes of these kids at such a tender age.

I read this article about how parents are far more aware of the sexualisation of adverts that are around now are forcing the kids to grow up too fast. It took my attention as the ad's that were being banned were from the successful brand that I often like to wear myself, Jack Wills. However I have noticed in their catalogues as they came through my door that images such as the ones in this article were being shown and I definitely had to look twice as my mind sort of said 'are you for real?! how is this allowed?' but sure enough there were over 3000 complaints about this ad and so was therefore banned by the ASA.

This cannot be a good thing. Primark were picked up for selling padded bikini's for seven year olds. Something has got to change. It's just not right!

| University of Dundee - The Brand. |

My friend and I got together to carry out a quick brand audit of the University of Dundee. After walking around and picking up leaflets and taking photos around the campus and then putting our heads together this is what we thought. We were impressed by the continuity of the University of Dundee logo, the symbol, that seems to be plastered everywhere around campus, but this is good to familiarise everyone with it. Also all the university building names are on every building  and on plenty signage help define the periphery of the campus.

our beautiful city
We think Dundee Uni has a good image, on the latest prospectus and on some leaflets the images are of people coming together, getting along, connecting, chatting, helping and learning from each other which all sends out a good vibe of the Dundee Uni and what it can provide and give to you as a student. If it is giving this impression of a friendly, helpful environment then it is more likely to persuade you to want to go and be a part of that. What else is on these brochures/documents? Of course the Dundee Uni logo stamped on it somewhere. The more you link these positive images of Dundee with everytime you see the logo the brand trust stars to build and the more Dundee builds up this 'good image' of itself and it will persuade students to apply. You see what I read recently in The Brand Gap, is that the brand is not a corporate identity but infact the people's gut feeling and how it's defined by them. So what I'm really saying I guess is that everyone will have their own opinions but if the generic attitude is positive then the brand of the university will be built up ad become known as having a successful brand. We have come across that anytime anything is advertised within the uni that is aiming to help the students in any way it always has the Dundee Uni logo stamped on it. E.g the student services flyer about student support workers and the one about local GP practices. Not everything is 'uni' related as such, like the GP flyer, yet the uni created it to help the students of Dundee and as it's associated it therefore qualifies for the uni symbol, the logo.

collection of leaflets all stamped with Dundee Uni logo

Another aspect that we liked about the brand image of Dundee Uni was the wide variety of bright colours used. It represents the different aspects of the uni and emphasises the variety of options and help that is available. The bright colours are fun, lively, visually eye-catching and appealing. Not only was there a series of leaflets in similar style with just varying colours but as we flicked through the pages of the prospectus, an array of colours jump out at you.

same styled leaflet in a series of colours for different things
prospectus pages

What the people say_
We wanted to know whether those students at Duncan of Jordonstone said that exact title of where they were studying or whether they generalised and said 'University of Dundee' After asking a few friends and DOJ students we concluded that it largely depended on who you were speaking to. When asking a bunch of dentist students where they studied they said 'University of Dundee' and when we asked them where do you think we study? They said obviously University of Dundee, which is true but they wouldn't see us as being a part of DOJ. Some are aware of the 'art college' as they call it that is part of the university but paricularly for me on an Interior Design course they weren't aware that was part of it. They could be plain daft or there is maybe an underlying truth exposing itself there. Maybe Duncan of Jordonstone itself is not as well advertised around campus. More often than not the foreign students that were not from Scotland said the 'University of Dundee' to be more specific as to where they studied. Whereas the locals, especially students from Dundee itself know the area well and expect others too as well so they confidently and boldly say 'Duncan of Jordonstone College of Art & Design.'

We thought as a whole that Dundee was branded well, the only thing we picked up on was that normally shown was that we felt the prospectus and leaflets should not just show British white people around the age of 18. Although that is good it would also be good to show a range of ages and ethnicities just to prove that we're a university in a city that is welcome to everyone and the courses available are open to all ages. International students are encouraged as there is plenty that come to study here or even on an exchange - Dundee is renowned for that, so we just thought it would be nice to show a flavour of that perhaps on more pamphlets.

| Pecha Kucha Night. Here in Dundee |

Pecha Kucha is originally a Japanese event that was devised for young designers to meet, network and show their work in public. It has turned into a massive celebration with events happening in hundreds of cities around the world, inspiring creatives worldwide. It draws its name from the Japanese term for the sound of  'chit chat'. It rests on a presentation format that is based on a simple idea of 20 images for 20 seconds. It's a format that makes presentations concise, and keeps things moving at a rapid pace.

If it had not been for my course and this concept being introduced to us recently I would never have heard of this before let alone what it means. We were encouraged in our course to do a couple of pecha kuchas recently on our latest project to inform other course mates and other design students of other disciplines what it is we were working on and how we work to develop ideas. Not only was this beneficial to gather our thoughts but to also gain inspiration from others.

Last night Creative Dundee held an event called Pecha Kucha and had invited along a series of creative/design related speakers. These include game designers, an eco archtiects, a local artist, my course director (interior design), the director of the V&A Dundee, and a couple of graduates from Duncan of Jordonstone and more! All of which were inspiring in their own way. It is so nice to hear about Dundee coming together to become this creative hub that is deserves to be! It fits in nicely with my current project at university at the minute, I want to look into the music side of Dundee and design some sort of a musical experience to Dundee to be part of the creative hub to fit along side the McMannus Galleries, Dundee Rep Theatre, DCA etc. A place where people can connect and relate to music like they never have before. Experiencing music for themselves throughout this designed space. Due to music being a sort of universal language that many international people can relate to also, it encourages a connection to form being the local Dundonians and the international students. Through the language of music people can connect through this common ground and learn from each other. We don't have to go anywhere, they come to Dundee. We can all be exposed to more of a creative side to Dundee through music and be more culturally engaged with the world we live in.

Friday, 4 November 2011

The beautiful retail & sights of Glasgow.

So yesterday I managed to kill two [many] birds with one stone thanks to the module of Advertising and Branding. Not only did I get to visit shops and but I also got to visit friends and see my boyfriend, winwinwin!
So upon arrival we started in style by heading to Starbucks just in time for the Christmas lattes coming out - wonderful. Took some pictures of the Christmas cups and of course the all important new logo.. It was interesting to hear the reactions of fellow coursemates to the new logo. Many, if not most in fact said they didn't like it and felt it was too bare. I'm going to be honest and say I did agree - until yesterday. Seeing it on the cardboard cup holders I just felt it fitted nicely.. I'm sure all you folks out there that don't appreciate it will get used to it! Your eye will just become familiar to seeing it and the new improved look will just be the Starbucks we've always known!

A friend and I then proceeded to have a little look around a few certain shops and I just absorbed the retail environment as we walked in. Being an interior designer I was looking out for the retail design and shop layout and how it would affect me personally and the general public walking around the store and selling of the products.

Jack Wills was the first shop we entered. Jack Wills is a premium clothing brand aimed at university students. (the ones not continuously in their overdraft...) The fashion label uses the brand and registered trademark 'Jack Wills - University Outfitters' to reflect the heritage and inspiration behind the brand. The shop has quite an urban yet homely feel to the store. When you walk in the main display table is actually a pool table that they have placed glass over - pool, a game that students love to socialise round. The shop is heavily decorated in the brand's main colours with striped navy and pink wallpaper heading up the stairs. the wall is also covered in many picture frames with various photos and quotes that sum up the student persona they are aiming the clothes at. The like to set the scene in Jack Wills with displaying the clothes actually in use, so they had a bath set up filled with christmas bobbles that were pearly coloured to look like bubble and had the his and hers towels hanging next to it.... The had the bed covers, pillows and model with the pyjamas sitting on a bed with what is supposed to be a macbook. It makes the store interior look impressive and makes the products more appealing as they are seen in use and the customers can identify with the scene being themselves, or maybe how they want to look.

The Apple store is one that always impresses me. I love the minimalist interior they go for, using a lot of glass (on their stairs etc to appear to take up less room) The layout of the store is particularly customer friendly - there are tables laid out just waiting for you to touch and try out the products for yourself, get a feel for them and fall in love... Another thing I notice with Apple is the customer service - they all wear bright blue tshirts so you are sure not to miss them and there are almost double the amount of staff than customers - allowing one member to each customer almost! But that image of the brand appears well, the staff want to help and you are in there to find out as much as you can. And good customer relations and service reflects well on the company - which everyone know Apple does anyway.

Walking through the likes of Merchant City, the shops are of much higher class and designer brands. The brands you would find there are the likes of Ralph Lauren, Gant, Jigsaw, Pink, United Colours of Benetton.. Mixed in with the nice cafes and restaurants such as Cafe Rouge, Di Maggio's.. The Glasgow of Modern Art is situated right in the centre of Royal Exchange Square which many tourists would go visit and they may be the type to experience the likes of the Italian restaurants and designers. When heading into Ralph Lauren, I felt like I was worth 12p myself compared to the £70 polo shirts! The polo shirts were so neatly stacked up displaying all the colours with not a single crease - it actually made me scared to touch them! I was just comparing that image in my head with the chaos of Primark where literally all the stock is everywhere - everything is unfolded! The whole shop layout and interior screams classiness, rich colours such as bottle green and gold...materials such as fur, nice lighting.. The whole brand is reflected in the layout...the quality, the price, the image..what you see around you is what you are buying.

Then walking into John Lewis you are always firstly hit with an almightily aroma of multiple fragrances which I personally love. The interior is quite different in a department store because different shops/labels are within the one space and they just lead from one into the other without walls necessarily... One department leads into another, all the jewellery, perfumes & cosmetics, handbags etc will all be in a section together and the clothes are all next to each other so you just wander from one 'store' to the next... What I think is beneficial about this is, because it's not one specific brand that means it's not going to be favoured or despised and so you eliminate the chances of the customers who dislike a particular brand.. for example, if someone really doesn't like Dorothy Perkins because of the clothes, or perhaps a previous bad experience...the chances of going back to the store is small... However in the likes of John Lewis you just find yourself looking at all the clothes as a whole as you follow the path that leads you through the store and you find yourself stopping to look at clothes in perhaps a shop you would never normally look in, or a brand you may never have heard before so if you weren't happy with somewhere before you are not as aware of it being singled out as it blended in the store with all the sister stores. So for the brands and stores themselves this is a greater advantage by being part of a bigger name, you are bound to attract more customers.

So many shops, so much to take absorb in a shop interior, never more have I enjoyed shopping as work/studying, let's keep it up :)