Life lessons from an ad man.

Posted by: | September 13, 2011 | Leave a Comment

I would like to introduce you to a homepage I have enjoyed a great deal over the last 2 years. TED is a collection of inspirational, visionary and sometimes frankly mind blowing talks held often by people at the cutting edge of their respective field.

As this is a marketing blog the previous information would be inadequate to be posted here if I were not to make it important from a marketing point of view. I strongly advise everyone to browse TED for anything that interests them. (Well I guess I just became a brand ambassador.Well done TED, that is how one creates word of mouth) I will focus on two talks I have just rediscovered today.

1. Lessons from an ad man

This talk is not only highly enjoyable but also teaches some very important concepts of marketing and how the creation of customer value could be used for good as well as showing that most of what consumers perceive as value really is just that: Perceived value. Mr Sutherland also very nicely shows using the example of wine and Shreddies that perceived value does not have to correlate with actual change in the physical product. Sometimes sheer re-branding of a product and a good advertising campaign can to the trick. Intangible value is often seen as inferior to tangible value but just like Mr Sutherland I think that this perception is flawed because after we cannot experience anything without our brain processing these inputs. That the things we perceive and the real world often do not match exactly can easily be demonstrated using examples such as the “Ponzo illusion” or other optical illusions. This does however not make the perceived difference any less meaningful. Someone drinking a very expensive wine while knowing of the price of this product really does experience a difference in taste. The world is what we make of it, or more precisely what our brain makes of it.

2. Sweat the small stuff

Mr Sutherland’s second talk even more directly links to marketing and perceived customer value. It is the little details that make an experience memorable. It is the same concept that makes lies more believable as one adds more details. As we do not memorize like a computer by merely “saving” a certain image or scene but by processing the scene and when one remembers something one actually actively reassembles the scene in one’s mind. That is why our memories are often flawed. And this is also why little details make an experience memorable as they do help in correctly reassembling the memory. I guess I could go on and on but what I personally took as the core of this second talk is that the little details are the ones that make a brand unique and that make it more memorable and thus allowing for a stronger brand.





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