Brands getting it right

No question, 2020 has been a shocker for many brands, and as we enter 2021 we will need to come to terms with how we navigate the recession.

Research of the past four recessions shows each has followed the same pattern, some businesses don’t survive, most take three years to get back to where they were, and 9% flourished.

So what did those who flourish do differently:

  • Balance between cost cutting and operational spend
  • Increased marketing, R&D and new assets
  • Cost cutting focused on improving operational efficiency rather than cutting staff
  • Stayed closely connected to their customers needs
  • Increased their share of voice

Businesses who maintained or grew their advertising spend during recessions not only set the company up to survive the recession, but they thrived in the period that followed.

This result has nothing to do with the recession, it has everything to do with advertising share of voice.  Simplistically, if you are the only brand in the market advertising and promoting yourselves, your brand becomes the only brand in the segment for the consumer.

While during the recession it is likely you will experience a reduced return on your advertising investment, you will likely increase market share, and once the economy improves your chance to maintain market share is strong.

The choice is yours, you can stay brand bright, maintain and grow your market share, and attract customers from your competitors………..….. or you can go dark.

What are you going to do?


Delivering the spirit of Christmas

The festive season begins when Christmas ads are released, and each year we share our thoughts on the John Lewis & Partners Christmas ad.

But this year is different, never before have brands and agencies been more challenged by variables such as audience state of mind, stage of lockdown, brutal trading conditions and not knowing if or how their audience come together this Christmas.

In the UK, they are going back into lockdown, with John Lewis & Partners having let go 1,500 staff and closed 8 stores.  It’s tough, and they needed to correctly read the community mood, as a misstep could have hurt their customers and damage their brand.

John Lewis & Partners have nailed it again.   Their ‘Give A Little Love’ campaign shows how important simple acts of kindness are, and they are encouraging everyone to undertake small acts of kindness to spread a little love across the UK.  In addition, the campaign aims to raise GDP 4 million for local charities FareShare and Home-Starts.

On the other side of the world Coca-Cola has delivered a highly emotional ad that will support their brand building strategy.   This ad says to its audience that Coca-Cola understands them, what’s important to them, and they have similar family values.

This emotional connection will rise above superficial pricing and convenience meaning customers stay loyal for the long haul and are less likely to defect to competitors.  But is it enough to offset the push against sugary drinks?   Well that remains to be seen.

These are two great Christmas ads with different goals and different audiences.   We hope you enjoy both of them.





Business marketing needs are changing

Businesses are reviewing their operation and their marketing performance, we are seeing demands of marketing effort fluctuate, freezes put on staff, and adjustments made to budgets.

An emerging trend from this change is the rise of Marketing Partner Agencies.

So what is a Marketing Partner Agency?   It’s an agency that provides marketing operational and/or management staff together with specialised support services ie marketing and brand strategy, social media, creative, media buying, web development, and PR.

The benefits of having a Marketing Partner Agency is flexibility, on-call support and access to marketing specialists.   A Marketing Partner Agency can provide a safe set of hands for your day-to-day marketing operational needs, staff for one off campaigns or project work, access to a strategic team and specialists when you need them.

Roadmap Strategy is a Marketing Partner Agency.   If you would like to know more about how we work, or chat through your marketing challenge and explore how we can help, give Ali a call on 0411 135 317.

Choice Hotels are listening to their customers

With a pent up desire to travel, Melburnians are ready to explore regional Victoria.

They want a break away and they want it to be easy.   Easy to book, easy to enjoy and easy to support local.  However, with hospitality businesses remaining at reduced capacity there is a real risk that visitors may not be able to access local restaurants.

We explored this issue with Choice Hotels and as a result the group has developed a suite of Victorian Great Escape Packages.

The packages are available at selected Choice properties across Victoria and include; 2 nights accommodation, breakfast, and dinner on the first night.  This provides certainty of a restaurant reservation upon arrival, while giving the guest the opportunity to explore and make their own arrangements at local restaurants on following nights.

We applaud Kari Hunter, General Manager Marketing and the team at Choice Hotels Asia Pacific for considering their guests needs beyond a room for the night, and product bundling to deliver increased return and yield to their franchisees.

Find your Choice Hotel Great Victorian Escape Package