Procter & Gamble

It's Raining Cat and Dog Lovers
February 1, 2008

No matter who you’re marketing to, you’re more than likely to reach a pet owner. After all, 63 percent of U.S. households—more than 71 million homes—have one or more pets, according to the 2007-2008 National Pet Owners Survey, conducted by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association. But while the pet owner market might encompass more than half the country, not all pet owners are created equal.

How to Add Humanity to Your Marketing Materials
September 1, 2007

Remember Mister Whipple? He was that old guy in the toilet paper commercial who kept telling people not to squeeze the Charmin. Mister Whipple was one of the most successful “continuing characters” in the history of advertising. Thanks to the “Please, don’t squeeze the Charmin” campaign, the brand became the category leader and made Proctor & Gamble a ton of money. (Factoid: In a 1978 poll, Mister Whipple was named the third best-known American behind former President Nixon and Reverend Billy Graham!) Let’s take a look at what Mister Whipple did for the brand and learn a bit about what he can teach

Benefits Revisited in the Age of Hype
June 13, 2007

Copywriters always have operated on the principle that benefits are the guts of any promotion. We know our prospects don’t care about the products we’re pitching. The only thing they want to know is, “What’s in it for me?” But with thousands of overhyped ads assaulting people daily, consumer skepticism keeps growing in direct proportion to the hype. Credibility is stretched razor-thin. As veteran copywriter Clayton Makepeace observes, “Pure benefit leads don’t work as well as they once did because they scream, ‘Hey, this is another AD! Read this so I can SELL you something.’” With the deluge of me-too messages promising to help us save

Gillette Flunks the Giggle Test
June 30, 2005

Razor Wars: Little Schick cries foul and the giant is nicked Look over the saga of Gillette vs. Schick-Wilkinson Sword, and you do not find two rivals vying for share of shaver market. This latest decision in favor of Schick is but one small victory in what is a truly nasty, all-out war between a corporate Goliath (Gillette with 90 percent market share) and David (Schick). The conflict is not only being waged in the media and on retailers' shelves for the whiskers of the American post-pubescent males, but also in courtrooms on both sides of the Atlantic. To follow their endless

E-commerce Link: Stemming the Spam Tide
October 1, 2004

What’s new on the e-mail deliverability front Do you feel your e-mail campaigns are drowning in a sea of spam? If so, you’re not alone. But there are several things happening behind the scenes that should begin to stem the tide. This is good news for marketers. First, let’s look at the obstacles e-marketers face today. To identify and reduce spam, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and corporations take extraordinary measures. This may result in mail being blocked or poor placement in the recipient’s inbox. Companies employ blacklists and content filters. Some filters may block large volumes that are sent too quickly or mailings that

Balancing Act
August 1, 2004

Special Olympics focuses on long-term donor value while continuing to invest in acquisition Having an eye toward long-term donor value means you can’t just focus on getting good response to your next mailing campaign. You have to think in terms of donor lifecycles—from first-time renewals through retention and even to recapturing lapsed or dormant donors. As Joan Wheatley, vice president of donor development for Special Olympics Inc., knows, any one of these existing donor segments with whom you’ve established a relationship is likely to have a higher lifetime value than a batch of just-acquired names. For example, when it comes to renewal mailings, Special

TM Nuts 'n Bolts - Book Club
April 1, 2003

By Paul Barbagallo Diary of a Consumer Mind-Reader In his new book "How Customers Think: Essential Insights Into the Mind of the Market," marketing expert Gerald Zaltman offers this advice to managers baffled by consumer behavior: dig deeper. Zaltman, a professor of marketing at Harvard Business School, argues that when it comes to getting into the minds of consumers, marketers have only scratched the surface. Ninety-five percent of all thought—including what we really think about products and what will influence our decisions to buy—happens in the unconscious mind, beyond our own awareness, Zaltman says. Conventional marketing research tools such as focus

Your Corporate Image (1,036 words)
November 1, 2000

by Lois K. Geller Every year, before The Direct Marketing Association show, I get a slew of postcards from companies (some that are not at all relevant to my business), letting me know that they'll be exhibiting and telling me all about their products. I've been getting some of these same postcards for years. I'm thinking of one in particular, from a printing company that shows the plant, the presses and personnel lined up like stick figures. It seems that companies feel obliged to send "something" to invite me to their booths—that somehow it's expected. They're just not aware of how poorly they've executed