Figaro Digital looked back at the pre-digital world of branding, and investigated how these approaches have adapted to the modern consumer’s need for a digitally integrated world.
The industry is, and always has been, ever adapting to its audience. Now deep into the digital age, it’s bizarre to think that our campaigns once relied solely on display marketing – yet as new, streamlined techniques have come in to being, marketers still focus on display and TV advertising as an important element of branding. More importantly, the introduction of the integrated campaign approach means that this branding must span across display and print, as well as moving seamlessly into platforms like social media, email and mobile.
A brand that has been in business for over 120 years, Ladbrokes is centred in an industry which is constantly changing. Gaming laws are constantly iterated and amended, as are the advertising standards that run alongside them. “Ladbrokes is without doubt the best known brand in betting in the UK. But, while we have been through many changes, our core offering hasn’t. And, nor has the public’s desire to back their own opinions from football, to racing, to politics, to snow at Christmas or summer heatwaves,” says Kristof Fahy, CMO, Ladbrokes. “So while the image of Ladbrokes has gone through many iterations – the fundamentals of our business haven’t. Betting and gaming has gone through many changes over the years – driven by customers, technology and regulation. From the introduction of betting shops on the high street in the late 60’s through to the impact of the internet and now mobile. Looking forward, the rise of e-sports, virtual reality and the impact of marketing technology can drive a real, smart personalised experience for the customer. Our sector is probably one of the most competitive in the UK at the moment, which means that getting our brand out there and making sure we are front of mind in our customer’s minds is as important as it ever was.”
Multinational department store, Debenhams, has been operating for a whopping 238 years, from its humble beginnings as a drapers’ store in Wigmore Street, London. The company continues to use models in its display marketing – but its latest campaign is being released across all channels. Debenhams marketing director, Richard Cristofoli says, “Our customer has grown up with the Supermodel talent and identifies strongly with them as role models who know how to wear a trend well. We know that our customers want advice and inspiration on how to wear latest trends in a way that suits them. The fact that we are portraying ‘women not girls’ shows we are in touch with our customer and showing her that style has no age barrier. “A Match Made in Debenhams is our way of exciting customers with new season product whilst making the shopping experience less intimidating by giving advice on the full look.”
“Rix Petroleum’s first advertisements date back to the early 1950s, when we started supplying fuel across the East Riding of Yorkshire. These ads were text-heavy, as imagery was not common at the time, and featured clear and concise messages. This ‘does what it says on the tin’ style of communication was typical of the era,” says James Brook, group marketing manager, Rix Petroleum. “In the 70s and 80s, as heating oil became a bigger market, we began to put a larger emphasis on reliability in our advertising. We adopted the slogan ‘Rapid Reliable Rix’ as part of an eff ort to convince coal users to switch their energy source to oil. “The advertising Rix uses today focuses on being independently owned and caring, because we know these qualities set us apart in the modern marketplace. It’s a big plus to be a family owned business, and we try to reflect this in a friendly and approachable tone of voice. This is encapsulated by our current slogan: ‘At Rix, We Care’.”
“Gola has had a star-studded sporting history and as such has celebrated this through its historical marketing activity; today our approach is a little different,” explains Donna Hill, head of marketing, Gola. Gola has been manufacturing sporting goods and clothing since 1905, and has seen its campaigns go from simple photo ads right the way through to interactive hashtags on Social Media. “There are a number of styling markers in history but probably the biggest change came with the birth of jeans in the ‘60s giving rise to their perfect accompaniment, the casual trainer and so the trainer world started to change. In more recent times the meteoric rise of athleisure means that we’re wearing trainers in our everyday lives again and not just for performance. As such Gola connects with its audience through a global blogger campaign, which aims to communicate the ease with which Gola trainers can be styled.”