Ode to kiwi

Zespri presents “Sweeter than you think”. The kiwi company, in fact, has dedicated and launched a surprising advertising campaign that could be seen also as a perfect example of brand entertainment: a musical focus on kiwis and their contradictory characteristics. Curious? Keep reading! 😀

“Sweeter than you think” is one of the latest advertising campaigns created by Zespri. A two minute musical commercial with an unbelieveble protagonist: the kiwi. Apparently rough macho men with a tender heart singing in falsetto are the supporting actors of this apparently ugly and frightening fruit. A masterpiece of irony and good entertainment, as well as fantastic dancers. Watch the video if you don’t believe me.


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Great quote from “Taxi Driver” at the beginning of the scene and inspiring presentation of kiwi’s strengths: after this amazing two minutes musical, won’t you reconsider? Definitely, don’t you think?

Other post about brand entertainment

Brand Storytelling: view and experience

Everything related to a brand contributes to its storytelling, being unavoidably part of the plot and its development. Today’s focus is on visual and immersive tools and approaches that can be used to spread and update the tale narrated by a brand. Keep reading if you want to know more! 😉

VISUALISING

Style is as important as substance. Great weight, therefore, rests with the graphic and audiovisual content. Videos, in particular, are a very useful tool for storytelling because they can transmit more immediate understanding of their message, which will have the support of moving images and sound – perhaps including an evocative soundtrack – ensuring a rhythm to the vision that is consistent with the characteristics of the message.

The story in pictures certainly gives more appeal to content: a video, a graphic artwork, a photograph can be very explanatory and capture the attention of its interlocutors at events, fairs, meetings, corporate training sessions [video-tutorials are always much appreciated] … in addition to being valuable material for each company archive. Also, this type of material can be easily shared and distributed through the upload of specific platforms [for example on its corporate blog].

EXPERIENCING

The brand experience is still one of the essential forms of storytelling: the direct sharing of experiences alone can greatly influence the perception related to a product, a service or a communicative artifact.
Starting with events – the creation of “community in the presence” variously structured – organising an opportunity for direct contact becomes a storytelling tool, as well as business tools. From the mere presence of the brand on institutional material to the preparation of stands and conference talks, as well as direct mailing initiatives or the catering, each event corresponds to an experience of the brand that supports it and interprets its universe of values.

The same happens for every location that may represent the brand, an office [for those involved in B2B] as well as a store [for those who are part of the Consumer market], the venue in which one meets the potential target is one of the most important showcases. So, as we know, when one meets somebody new, the first thing noticed is the physical appearance, and only subsequently other less superficial characteristics. In the same way, entering someone’s office for the first time produces considerations, and not just about the aesthetic.

Approaches, tools and strategies to drive a brand and its story can be various, almost infinite. The thing is to be able to build up a coherent and reliable story using the right instruments in the most appropriate way. Are you doing that? If you are not sure, I’ll be glad to figure it out with you! 😉

Brand Storytelling: serialisation

Having started the conceptualisation of the storytelling of a brand creating the trademark and spreading the corporate identity, it would be time to develop the “plot” using different communication tools and strategy approach. Continue reading to understand how! 😉

SERIALISING

If one loves a movie, one may happen to see the same film several times, the same as if one is passionate about a series and cannot miss even one episode. Serial contents have narrative structures able to stimulate curiosity and attract – if well structured – the viewer’s loyalty. For brand storytelling it’s the same: the consumer, after having been seduced, should not be abandoned, but constantly stimulated and intrigued with new contents that can maintain interest.

This objective is achievable, for example, by creating a blog and using social networking tools to give visibility to the brand while building a continuous feedback system with its stakeholders. The blog, through its continuous updating, allows one to structure storytelling as a continuous narrative, with each “episode” giving readers new information, reports, reflections and insights of their initiatives, but also news about changes and trends in its sector.

The blog is an instrument well suited to act as the core to the story of any organization, enriched by content on other social media [eg. YouTube videos, presentations from Slideshare, publications from Issuu …] and having the opportunity to share content through social networks [eg. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest …]. Such media placement makes the narrative more transparent because, thanks to the interaction related to the possibility for users to make comments and opinions, it guarantees the ability to turn the monologue into a dialogue.

Another way to make a continuous narrative of a business is by creating a house organ, a publication/magazine – digital if you want to stay connected to the web, paper if you need to reach those less accustomed to the use of the network and technology – that takes care of the organization’s life and issues connected to this [even as a spin-off of the corporate blog]. The design and distribution of a brand closely tied to the magazine can be a good institutional vehicle to get your story to the most illustrious users or positions in other organizations.

Interested in this subject? Read how to continue the development of a brand in next Wednesday’s post!

Brand Storytelling: the start

Everything that comes into contact with a business ends up telling a story: this is the new awareness that lies behind holistic marketing and empathic brand concepts. Each element of communication, every choice and every action – not only the products and/or services that one offers – together form the brand values and the reputation of a company.

These factors are nothing but stories that fill goods with meaning and make them perceptible to their target. To engage the target audience, therefore, it is necessary to make interesting stories, renewing them every time they are told so that no one’ll never get bored listening to them [just as you do with a film remake] and, at the same time, eradicating the risk of losing the brand recognisability.

The most important thing of all, though, is to avoid creating expectations that could be disappointed: creating a horror trailer for a romantic comedy, when the comedy is bright and enjoyable, would have the sole effect of disappointing the viewer.

ONCE UPON A TIME…

Rather like every respecting fairy tale begins with “Once upon a time …”, any brand that aspires to success – whether related to a context “business to customer” or to a “business to business” sector – defines the opening words of its narrative starting with the trademark and the corporate identity in which it appears.

The trademark is none other than the visual synthesis of the universe of values the brand represents. Colours, shapes, lettering, through the construction of a visual metaphor, must be able to represent the empathic “mood” that the brand aims to share with its target market.

The corporate identity, then, declines to follow specific guidelines with respect to the positioning of the trademark and other distinctive visual elements; it will become its consistent and organic expression in any context of application.

The brand story starts here, but obviously needs to be continuously updated, developed and serialised so one can communicate through all media tools eligible to express it, structuring a real narrative system.

Interested in this subject? Read about how to serialise and develop a brand in next Wednesday’s post!

Love and anagrams [Scrabble]

In a few days it will be Valentine’s Day, and to celebrate the lovers with a bit of romanticism, nothing is better – at least from a branding point of view – than a fantastic commercial such as the one which Scrabble entered in the Cannes Lions competition in 2015 and named “Anagram Lovers”.

The Scrabble advertising campaign is an amazing narration based on anagrams. So, playing with letters and words – other than the competitive advantage of the game – becomes the motif to tell a romantic and original love story in which Agostina, a cab driver from Tokyo, meets Santiago, a crab diver from Kyoto, during a costume party and – obviously – they fall in love… Just like the viewers will fall in love with the “magic” way to play with words everyone can experience with Scrabble.

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A really adorable use of anagrams to present the game and a different kind of storytelling, don’t you think? Actually, I’m hoping that the brand will transform this enchanting concept into a serial branded content, just to add a bit more of brand entertainment to its already excellent communication strategy. 😉

IKEA, a catalog or a cookbook?

After having learned – thanks to Elan – the best recipe to translate documents and other stuff online, let’s think about good recipes for interior designing. That’s IKEA’s idea behind an advertising campaign concept able to motivate people into reading the IKEA catalog/cookbook.

“Recipes for delicious kitchen” is a commercial that I hope was born to be serialised: I’d love to watch the bedrooms episode as well as the living rooms and bathroom ones. Anyway, not even considering the brand entertainment potential of this advertising campaign, the way in which IKEA has used its lateral thinking ability to build up a tutorial,which could be easily included in a real TV program related to cookery and meal preparation, is – as usual – spectacular.
Have a look at the video to appreciate the mood, the soundtrack, the rhythm of the storytelling accompanied by the very realistic images of ingredients and cooking utensils used to present the IKEA catalog as an almost-magic cookbook for houses.


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It’s impossible not to notice the ability of the brand to underline, always softly and with extreme grace, values such as quality, a real care for clients needs, flexibility, attention to detail and – why not – to trends , tastes and prices… all of them topped with a huge possibility of personalising everything. A fantastic way to bring to our attention IKEA’s competitive advantage and added values, other than the useful catalog contents, don’t you think?

Glass bottles are better

Some months ago, the Glass Packaging Institute launched a really interesting social campaign.
The campaign’s headline is “Upgrade to glass” and the aim of its wonderfully structured storytelling has been to persuade people to choose glass bottles over other kinds of packaging for beer and wine consumption.

The Glass Packaging Institute has had the brilliant idea to build its campaign with three tearjerker, break-up letters, transforming them into three different commercials. According to the videos, two of the letters were written by people who fell in love with glass beer bottles, the third one from a glass wine bottle fan. So, plastic cups, cans and carton boxes found theirselves completely abandoned.


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It seems clear that this is a heartbreaking social campaign. Thanks to the contents of the three letters and the pathos lent to the reading by the voiceover, the viewer would feel involved, he/she would sympathise with both, the addressee of the letter and the writer. With the first one because of the dramatic role of the abandoned lover, with the second one for a deeper reason: the viewer would agree with the writer’s position, understanding the strengths and the advantages of using glass and so the impossibility of not facing the situation and finishing the previous love story.

An engaging and fascinating social campaign, don’t you think?

From the house’s point of view

Maybe because I’m moving my primary residence from Rome to Oxford [even if I’ll spend quite a bit of time in Italy], I’m really focused on houses, furnitures, packing etc. Anyway the advertising campaign of Nest really grabbed my attention: the creativity with which the brand has pictured and described the house’s point of view about both home automation and life inside the walls is incredible. Just have a look at the videos and tell me I’m wrong! 😉

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After watching the commercials it’s impossible not to think that Nest is a genius of lateral thinking. They have created three stories from three different houses’ point of view to show their target how marvellous it is for a building to have home automation devices. And not just this.

Nevertheless it could be hard for houses to bear and support changes in furniture trends, removals, kids’ activity, not-very-good-chef attempts and so on; with those videos Nest have been capable to let people feel watched, loved and protected by their own houses just adding some little machines that take care of everything that could be dangerous or energy consuming.

Helped by a fairytale atmosphere, Nest’s commercials show empathy in an ironic, smart and sharp way that makes the viewer smile and appreciate the storytelling. Don’t you think?

Christmas and gifts at the office

Christmas is coming and with it the stressful shopping marathon to find the right gift for everyone that sometimes makes me think about spending the entire period abroad, on some desert island somewhere, far away from mall and shopping centre, the crowd in the streets and the queues to the cash desks. I really envy the USA citizen that can count on Office Depot help, at least for picking up some gift for their colleagues at the office…

The amazingly funny advertising campaign of Office Depot, in fact, suggests some fantastic gift ideas to buy for the people of the office, everyone thought through and considering the type of colleague and his/her specific behaviour. With this aim, Office Depot has produced and lauched five different commercials to describe five different characters: the pen-thief, the obsessive-labeler, the death metal guy, the germophobe and the multitasker. Enjoy the video and discover the gift-ideas! 😉


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With this advertising campaign surely Office Depot has succeeded in reaching their target audience and attracting their attention thanks to the sharp irony of the commercial storytelling, don’t you think?