We are the guardian of your brand

Jun 27, 2007

The subsequent list will invite you to also look under ‘Point of sale’, ‘Agencies’, ‘Designers’, ‘Marketing’, ‘Direct Mail’, ‘PR’, ‘Outdoor’, ‘Copywriters’. The list goes on.

Is advertising one, all, none of the above? And with all these people after a slice of your marketing budget, is it any wonder it doesn’t seem to go far?

The truth is that the marketing industry has developed an unhealthy obsession with breaking itself down into layer and layer of different disciplines… different ways to part with your cash.

You go to one agency for this, another for that. Even within the industry, keeping track of the latest field you can claim to be expert in can be a constant task.

As the only Milton Keynes agency that’s a member of the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising – the industry body for leading advertising, media and marketing communications agencies in the UK – we’ll be showing you over the next few months some ways you can make your budget work harder.

IPA member agencies – like us – are responsible for more than 80per cent of all the money spent on advertising in the UK. They’re also recommended by ISBA, the voice of British advertisers – like you.

So what exactly is ‘Advertising’? Look up ‘Advertising’ in the dictionary and you’ll find a description along the following lines: the “announcement publicly, especially in the press, of anything for sale, taking place or vacancies”.

Advertising has one focus. It isn’t the pictures, words or the media. It’s your brand. The correct promotion of the brand using the most appropriate channels is what pays the bills of both the clients and the agencies. As an example of the impact good advertising can have on a brand, you need only look to the high street (or covered shopping centre).

In spring 2004, with sales in decline and negative press coverage Marks & Spencer was on its knees and vulnerable to a second virtual takeover bid. In order to turn fortunes around, communications needed to serve as a public declaration of M&S’s confidence and commitment to change.

Since the launch of the award-winning ‘Your M&S’ campaigns, more than £6 million worth of positive press coverage and more than 18 million additional customer visits have been generated.

In spring 2006, M&S reported Q4 sales growth of 9.1pc against a backdrop of total high street sales down 1.4pc on the year. This was advertising at its best – using all the tools in the box, from TV to public relations, to turn the brand around.

Returning to our original list from the Yellow Pages; the answer is they’re ALL forms of advertising. And any agency worth its salt should be able to provide an integrated solution across all these platforms.

So, when you next approach a pitch or hand a project to your advertising agency, it’s worth thinking about how all the available platforms are used in the campaign to support your brand identity in today’s marketplace.

Always remember:
Buildings age and become dilapidated.
Machines wear out.
People die.
But what live on are the brands.

For more information, visit www.emberton-dale.com

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