Monthly Archives: July 2010

Dear Cathedral City

Dear Cathedral City,

Thank you for being utterly delicious and for your brilliant zip-lock pack – so simple, so useful. Don’t get me wrong, continental cheeses really get me going, but there’s nothing quite like a good, honest and consistently delightful cheddar to keep me happy – and for a treat, Cathedral City Vintage 20 is unparalleled. And thank you for your lovely ads – Pete Postlethwaite’s voice reminds me of melted cheese and I love the way he says “macaroni”, and those food shots instantly make me want to turn the grill on.



Thanks again,

Ned

http://www.cathedralcity.co.uk/

Dear Samsung

Dear Samsung,

Thank you for opting to fight clever rather than dirty as you stoke the flames of Apple’s iPhone 4 antennagate. You and all the others must have been rubbing your hands in glee that Apple has finally done something that you can really get your teeth into. But I like the way you’ve opted to rise above overt mudslinging despite the massive temptation to do so. Thanks to Mashable for drawing my attention to this.

Ned

Dear Muller,

Dear Muller,

Thank you (and TBWA) for your feel-good ads – they have consistently brought a smile to my face and not just because of Nina Simone’s infectious “Ain’t Got No/I Got Life”. Onken Biopot (which I posted on here) wins on product delivery, Rachel’s wins for (recent) innovation (which I posted on here), but Muller wins hands down for its above the line comms. Sure, there’s a  slight dissonance between Muller’s umlaut-ed Bavarian heritage and the green fields of Shropshire, but even two years since it first aired, this ad makes that pale into insignificance:

Ned

http://www.mullerdairy.co.uk/

Dear LOVEFiLM,

Dear LOVEFiLM,

Thank you for showing us how it’s done:

  • I admire how you spotted the gap in the UK market and were happy to steal with pride, taking an existing idea (Netflix) and executing it beautifully via both branded and white-label solutions
  • I admire the evolving Business model and how it initially combined the old (i.e. the postman) and the new (i.e. the internet) to ease consumers into a new behaviour. And how now, as streaming becomes easier and more widespread , you look set to side-step the Blockbuster trap (Blockbuster on life support) via the “Watch Now” button
  • I love the Value / Service Proposition – OK, so we sometimes don’t make it through all 4 DVDs in a month, but a massive selection and no late fees = a no brainer
  • I love the core advertising strategy (focussing on ease of use) and idea (question followed by movie clip) and the richness and longevity it affords in terms of new executions
  • I love the way those ads work on so many levels – Awareness, Interest and Desire all aroused – maybe that’s why well over 1m members have taken Action
  • I love it that the ads were done in-house. Maybe it was a co-incidence but the similarity to one of my all time favourites, Dream On (made by Marta Kauffman and David Crane who went on to make Friends), makes me think that you might have been stealing with pride once again…But so what? As Faris Yakob says, “Talent imitates, genius steals”. Check out this Dream On clip featuring a pre-Friends Courtney Cox – it’s about 10 mins long:

Fingers crossed your new agency 18 Feet & Rising can help you continue the perfect marketing storm you’ve created so far.

Ned

Dear First Direct

Dear First Direct,

Thank you for always being so cheerful on the phone – especially the lady I spoke to this morning – she made me smile. I know that everyone always bangs on about how great your customer service is, that you’re always winning awards (here), that everyone generally loves you and that you treat people like grown-ups (to the extent that you’re happy to publish the entire bloggosphere relating to your brand (both good and bad) your own website Talking Point), but over and above all of that, thank you for stopping sending me stuff in the post when I asked you to – you save money, I save time and we both save a few trees.

Ned

www.firstdirect.com


Dear Rachel’s


Dear Rachel’s,

Thank you for your new Pouring Yoghurt – for those of us in the innovation game, it’s always pleasing to see innovation in a mature category. For the time being, Onken Wholegrain (which I posted on here) remains my yoghurt of choice as I don’t currently have much of a call for “pouring” yoghurt, but I like the way you’ve put the idea into my head. I also admire the way you’ve observed and responded to an existing consumer behaviour with a simple proposition and recognised that “pouring” might be a new behaviour for some people (like me) and therefore “heroed” the morning occasion with your “Mornings with love” activation. Nice one.

Ned

www.rachelsorganic.co.uk/lovemornings

Dear Stella Artois


Dear Stella Artois ,

Thank you for not being afraid to fail and for launching Stella Artois Black. After the launch in 2007 and subsequent withdrawal of Stella Bock and Peterman Artois (as shown in the wonderfully elegant “La Famille Artois” font below) you might have become a little down-hearted about your chances of success. To be honest I think you would have been right to have been pessimistic as I’m not overly convinced by the Stella Artois Black proposition, but I admire your perseverance and adherence to Henry Ford’s premise that “Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.”

I wish you good luck.

Ned