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Connexus : Issue 38
At Interaction Communications, chief executive and senior strategist Len Hannah says promotional events need to be relevant to a solid marketing platform and strategic direction if they are to gain positive attention and media coverage. “It’s all about the message,” he says, “and while everyone talks about share of voice in the market, the product or service you are selling must also be of substance.” OnlIne InnOvatIOn The rise of online media has greatly enhanced the power of promotional events, and the scope for innovation, especially when it comes to connecting with the younger market. Brighton Consulting recently produced an informative and entertaining webinar about the subject for Abacus. It’s called ‘Social Media’ and it can be viewed at the blog www.brightonconsulting.com.au. A clip embedded in the webinar tells of an ingenious Telstra New Zealand event to encourage people to use its hard-copy Yellow Pages rather than online means of sourcing products and services. An ‘average’ bloke was selected and set the task of creating and marketing a yellow chocolate bar called Yellow. The concept went viral on online, with thousands of people and mainstream media, including radio talkback and TV chat shows, following its every step for several months. When Yellow hit stores, it sold out in a few days. “There are so few opportunities for credit unions and building societies to effectively connect with their membership, MARKETING 60 Connexus www.abacus.org.au Pushing the vanilla envelope There’s nothing very exciting about being offered a free scoop of vanilla ice cream. On the other hand, it’s hard to resist, especially in mid-summer. That’s precisely the appeal Montana 1st Credit Union was looking for when it incorporated the offer into its ‘boring is sexy’ campaign (boringissexy. com) this year. Montana 1st is a small credit union with two branches in the United States city of Missoula. It has been around for a long time, basing its everyday business on the usual values of trust, competitive rates and personal service. Its ‘boring is sexy’ campaign effectively turns that ordinariness on its head. “ When it comes to your money, too much excitement is the last thing you need,” it says. “ We’re strong and stable, and we’re making home loans, car loans and business loans just like always. That’s because Montana 1st Credit Union has been prudently boring the socks off Missoula for more than 78 years. Just ask your Grandpa. “Since 1931, we’ve been quietly doing what’s right for our members without any high-roller excitement. No corporate jets, no million-dollar salaries. Just great rates and outstanding member service, year after year after boring year. “That’s why Montana 1st Credit Union is proud to be plain vanilla and delighted to be drab.” Clever stuff. But it’s all words on a web page; it doesn’t demand that people do more than mildly exercise their eyes and sense of humour. So at the top of the page in a pink box, under the heading ‘Sensible Celebration’, is the invitation to come into one of the branches at any time to “Join us for a free scoop of plain vanilla ice cream!” Rarely has an exclamation mark been used with such ironic effectiveness. The rise of online media has greatly enhanced the power of promotional events, and the scope for innovation...