Marketing post #3: Target to launch its Canadian ad campaign during Oscars

Target to launch its Canadian ad campaign during Oscars

Target’s national ad campaign has several glimpses of Montreal

A while ago, we used target as a case study for one of the classes where we discussed about how Target can market itself to expand into Canada. Here it is, Target is finally airing its commercial during the Oscars. The commercial features “Mister Roger’s well-known “Won’t You Be My Neighbor” song by the Canadian band Dragonette and a French song named “Viendras-tu avec moi?”  by a Montreal band Alfa Rococo in Quebec. The different background soundtracks used in the commercial shows that Target has segmented Canadian consumers into two groups (French speaking and others) based on geographic segmentation base.

In the commercial, a woman rides a motorcycle with a Target dog pasts several Canadian landmarks such as people skating in Toronto, Vancouver’s Olympic Village, and Moving Day in Quebec. These will appeal to Canadians as the landmarks and traditions are familiar to consumers, thus demonstrating that they considered and analyzed the culture aspects of macro environmental factors. In addition, Target pledged $1 million to Canadian charities, creating bursaries for Quebec fashion designers as well as sponsoring a park in Quebec to influence the consumer decision process by manipulating the affective component of consumer’s attitude towards Target as an American brand (Canadians will feel less hostile to the idea that they are supporting an American brand when they know that Target supports Canadian charity and other causes). This is exactly how our group discussed in class that Target can incorporate more Canadian symbols into their marketing campaign and support Canadian businesses so it is more acceptable for Canadians to accept the brand. I wonder how Canadian consumers will react to the commercial when Target stores open in the near future.


The Rebranding of RIM

 The new BlackBerry Z10 is displayed during the device's launch in New York Wednesday.

It would probably be an understatement to say the Research in Motion has struggled in recent years. Year after year, RIM has witnessed the likes of Apple and Samsung eat away its market share with touch-based devices, while it persisted with its QWERTY keyboard model. RIM’s persistence eventually led to plummeting stock price and pushed the company to the brinks of bankruptcy.

After a 2 year product hiatus, RIM finally launched its brand new blackberry z10 in an attempt to recapture some of its lost market share. To pair with the launch, RIM orchestrated two important actions: hire pop star Alicia Keys as its creative director and rebranded itself as solely Blackberry.

These two actions marked an important transformation in Blackberry’s brand image. Prior to the change, Blackberry was known to be very corporate, business, and not generally designed for consumers. The phone was designed to be more of a tool than a toy. This brand image manifested it itself in many areas such as black berry’s simple black packaging and commercials featuring professionals.

With the name change and hiring of Alicia Keys, Blackberry is attempting to rebrand itself more towards the public consumer market. Through Alicia Keys, Blackberry hopes to communicate an image of strength, professionalism, but at the same time mainstream. Furthermore, uniting the brand under the Blackberry name reduces confusion between blackberry and RIM. Furthermore, Blackberry is a much more appealing to consumers because of its fruit, fun nature, while RIM sounds too technical and professional.

It will be interesting to see how consumers feel regarding the rebranding and whether the strategy will ignite Blackberry/RIM’s comeback in the smartphone market.