Why brands should establish whether topical campaigns will resonate with audiences before committing

Bo MattssonAs increasingly tangible investments, it is vital that marketing campaigns be underpinned with research to support them. In the quest to be topical and on-trend, brands may turn to news events to make their campaigns more timely and relevant. However, failing to consider whether a real synergy exists between the topical event and the brand offering, or whether the campaign will resonate with the audience, may result in wasted resources entirely.

Market research agencies can often be invaluable when trying to locate this information for brands, as well as testing the campaign message to establish whether the topic in question will resonate with the target audience.

However, it is crucial to ensure the appointed market research agency uses a relevant survey panel or has access to a large number of people in the required demographic to ensure an accurate response is obtained.

For instance, when the royal baby arrived, Coca Cola capitalized on the event with its ‘Time for a royal celebration’ campaign, using an image of two Coke bottles bearing the names of the new parents, William and Kate.

Tesco on the other hand used the event as a hook to run a promotion for Moet and Chandon as the country’s celebratory drink of choice.

Google was also keen to jump on the bandwagon with the launch of an online greeting card, allowing people from all over the world to dedicate their well wishes, later sent in physical form to Kensington Palace.

Whilst all these campaigns were highly creative, one might question whether the brands in question had any connection to the event, and ultimately whether these types of campaigns are successful in reaching the target market.

For example, would Coca Cola’s target market have been interested in the birth of the royal prince? And how many would have celebrated with a bottle of Moet from Tesco?

There are many market research tools and owned panels available these days (including DIY options),which has made surveying an accessible arena for brands and organisations seeking vital insight to ensure campaigns will reap return on investment.

In a crowded, competitive marketplace, choosing the right route can be a minefield for brands. For this reason, market research agencies would do well to ensure their research delivers by effectively managing these panels.

More importantly, the quality of the panel, as well as having access to high numbers of respondents from the target market, is crucial.

Brands and organisations should check that this is the case with their chosen research agency, as panel sizes may differ significantly from one agency to the next. Of course, businesses can also create their own panels to ensure they have direct access to their existing customer base at any time.

As well as being cost effective, it is also becoming ever more popular to open the panel to others wanting to understand the opinions of consumers, meaning it also becomes a source of revenue.

When embarking on a campaign linked to a topical trend or event, brands of all sizes need to first ensure that research findings underpin the direction.

Not only will this help save time and money, but more crucially will allow the brand to avoid any damage that, once inflicted, could be difficult to undo.

Author bio

Bo Mattsson is the chief executive of Cint, a global provider of technology for obtaining market intelligence. Bo founded Cint in 1998 when he decided to apply his experience of trading online to the market research industry. He then took over as CEO in 2003 to revamp the core market research software into an exchange-based offering for respondent access. For further information, please visit www.cint.com.

guest post footer