The marketing of Procurement to Marketing

Posted by on Jan 31, 2013 in Marketing, Procurement, Uncategorized

Marketing and Procurement departments, it seems, may forever be at logger heads. Procurement is often seen by Marketing as the monsters coming in to cut Marketing’s budget. They are seen as being surrounded by numbers and graphs, contracts and clauses. Marketing is often seen by Procurement as the art department. They are perceived as the ones with all the creativity and brand awareness, but without the knowledge on how to buy what they do, better. And instead of fluttering around with an Excel spread sheet, they are swanning about with presentations covered in pretty pictures. Sadly, some minds cannot be changed. It is true however, that Procurement can offer a whole lot more to Marketing than is often thought. The thing is that it is not all about cost saving! Discovering time efficiencies is just as valuable as getting an agency to cut its costs, and sometimes even more so. Marketers often do not have the time to ask their agencies the questions which are engrained in a Procurement professional’s mind: What are your costs made up of? Who is doing this work? How long will it take each person to complete a stage in this job? Can you do it quicker? Can you use a different level of...

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Get a MINI for less than a chocolate bar

Posted by on Dec 6, 2012 in Marketing

We all know the ‘Boris Bike’ hire scheme by Barclays. You need to get somewhere in London; you don’t own a bike and don’t feel like getting public transport, so you hop on a rental bike. Free for the first half hour and £1.00 for an hour, this scheme has proven to be a marvellous idea. As the days and nights are getting rather a lot chillier than a few weeks ago however, I envisage these bikes not to be as popular as they are in the summer, being left un-ridden and eventually covered in snow. Welcome the MINI. Apparently inspired by Barclays’ idea to bring affordable personal transport to the masses, today MINI is launching a car hire scheme on London’s Berkley Square, where you can rent one of their MINI Coopers for an hour at a time. The cost for renting? Just 26p for an hour. This is equivalent to the hourly rate should you be buying a MINI Cooper on their finance package costing £189 per month. Noted however, the car needs to be vacated once the hour is up or prepare to face a penalty. MINI’s manifesto ‘bring Mini to the masses’ has been boosted by this so called the MINI Fun Hire Service ....

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Starbucks evolution

Posted by on Nov 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

So Starbucks has bought a luxury tea house called Teavana, in a $620m deal which secures Starbucks to now own a 300-strong chain of tea stores across shopping malls in the US. Starbucks already owns a tea brand, Tazo, and they are opening their first Tazo tea bar this week in Chicago. So alongside Tazo tea bars, there will now also be Starbucks Teavana tea bars. All this tea business is rather mind boggling, especially since we are talking about Starbucks, a brand completely synonymous with coffee … coffee bars. Not tea, or tea bars. And neither juice. Earlier this year Starbucks acquired Evolution Fresh, which is a fresh juice company, with the idea to open up a cluster of fresh juice bars across the US. Starbucks previously ditched “coffee” from its name. I get the strategy, but really – Starbucks Tea … Starbucks Juice … not quite the same ring. But fear not. Our trusted and established English tea is not yet under threat by this American giant. There is so far no known plans to open any Teavana in the UK....

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What’s up with the advert attention?

Posted by on Nov 19, 2012 in Advertising

For the past few weeks, one question has really been niggling in my mind. What is it with the Chanel No.5 advert featuring Brad Pitt? Why they hype? The more people are moaning about it (“Brad sold out”…”It’s ludicrous”…”The advert is bonkers”), the more attention the advert is getting, hence letting the advert do what it’s meant to do… This advert has been ridiculed, parodied even. It’s been written about in newspapers. I must say that Chanel’s TV adverts are not usually my favourite (I am unsure about the mini movie-type adverts of late), but I didn’t see much hype about the advert with Nicole Kidman, or Kiera Knightly. Perhaps it’s the monologue Brad has with himself that is a bit cringe. But people, the more discussions, the more advertising space and time for Chanel. And it’s like the age old trick when you tell someone not to do something then they will do it (“Don’t think of a pink elephant”). Don’t go and view the Chanel No.5 advert featuring Brad...

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How much is too much?

Posted by on Jul 31, 2012 in Marketing

A friend of mine recently went to see a Morrissey concert in Manchester. Now, I am a Morrissey/Smiths fan as much as the next person (or maybe the next person loathes him, I’m not sure), but the following annoyed me: during ‘Meat Is Murder’, Morrissey proceeded to show a 5-minute long video of extreme animal cruelty. Is it me, or is that inappropriate? I get the whole ‘let’s convert people to vegetarianism’, but I know that had I been at this concert, I most likely would’ve walked out. If there is one thing I detest, it’s being dictated to. I also, through much convincing from a friend who is active in the forum, attended an introduction day for a well-known forum that offers a course with multiple levels which promises to change your life and those of others around you. During this introduction, the presenters were arrogantly implying that whoever has not done this course basically leads a less-than worthy existence, and that at a cost of ‘just’ £450 (incremental the further up the levels you go) and 48 hours per level, your life will be enhanced with endless superior opportunities and everyone will be jealous. I promptly walked out (with difficulty I should add – never mind through...

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