During my week off last week we went to the cinema to pass some time on a rather wet day. I haven’t been at the cinema for quite a while and over all I really enjoyed the experience but?
I had a real issue with the adverts. Gone seem to be the local adverts at the cinema interspersed with big brands. Instead we just seem to have big brand adverts who to my mind seem to be lost in a world that disappeared in 2007.
First up we had Sky Television whose brand strapline is “Believing in better.” The rationale behind this seems to be that what we want is bigger and better Television. Well I don’t think we do. A better world for everyone and a less manipulative media yes. But as we face yet another winter with doom and gloom everywhere I don’t think bigger and better television viewing is up there in many people’s agendas. When there are worries about the price of heating, food and fuel to concern us. To me Sky have an aspirational strapline for a different world and or a more worthy product.
Next up was Virgin Media who were no better again seemed to think that all we need is a bigger and better television. The fact that their adverts were repeated just added to my annoyance and made me wonder am I the one who finds these irrelevant? I used to laugh at some of the local adverts but at least it was local companies trying to do their best and earn a living. There was something very materialistic and greedy about these big brands adverts that did not sit well with me.
Then the Bank of Scotland advert came on. I realise that the marketers within Bank of Scotland need to still sell the bank as does the Royal Bank of Scotland. But I do feel they have to realise that their brand reputation is non-existent. We have been let down by them. Two institutions that we were once proud of. A gentle approach is one that is maybe needed. But no they were on-screen to tell me how great their customer service is and did we know they had been around since the Darien scheme? Yes I did know that I once was very proud of that fact. But they wouldn’t be around today if the government hadn’t bailed them out. There by the grace of the government go the Bank of Scotland. So sorry glossy adverts don’t make up for what has gone on in the financial sector for the past couple of years.
I have been thinking about this over the past couple of days. On the one hand it frustrates me hugely that these big brands with so much money and clout seem to be so out of date with the here and now. But the more I thought about it I wondered if this was just further evidence that we are moving to a different economy with new values and beliefs and that maybe it’s good that the big brands don’t get that yet? As it gives the little people a chance to show that being honest and having integrity about your product is so much better.
So I came back to work with renewed vigour about my job and in helping rural companies stand out and get their message across. Marketing is not about gloss and fiction. It’s about being honest about who you are and why you are in business and crucially knowing who your customers are and offering them a great service.
So small and medium businesses out there you have an opportunity to show integrity about what you say and show that unlike the big guys you live in the world we live in now.