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The Best a Brand Can Get? Discussing that Gillette campaign

  • Opinion
  • January 22, 2019
  • Michael Goldthorpe
The Best a Brand Can Get? Discussing that Gillette campaign

Simon says, “Start with why”. Why? Because “no-one buys what you do, they buy why you do it.” Those are the headlines from Simon Sinek’s famous Ted talk. And his Apple makes a lot of sense.

But 40 million views later it’s all getting a little cliché and confused. And the most recent cobbled-together, virtue-signalling bollocks from Gillette is a great example of “Why not?”.

Why do we all like ‘why’?

Like most of the industry, we like the cut of Simon’s jib. He struck a chord and communicated with common sense. His genius was to summarise a lot of brand theory in some simple whiteboard circles and a catchphrase. It’s good stuff.

But the challenge of simplifying anything is forgetting the devil in the detail. In this case, Gillette missed the purpose of their business to create a new purpose for their business.

Rather than build brand around razors, they dived down the rabbit hole of social self-importance to lecture their target market instead. Most people don’t seem to like it.

What’s the point of purpose?

Having a purpose is no bad thing. The commercial point is to make people feel good about your brand so they buy more of your stuff. It’s brand-building 101. And it usually comes best from start-ups. Patagonia. Tick. Eat My Lunch. Tick. Even Dove’s campaign for real beauty. Tick.

Where it goes wrong is where it doesn’t ring true. Remember when Pepsi tried to fix racism with a music video? While no self-respecting human would disagree with the premise of Gillette’s ad, there’s no believable link between a smoother chin and a better society. It’s just awkward.

I don’t want to wake up woke.

Gillette missed the point of Sinek’s why. I don’t buy a razor to change the world. I buy it to shave. And in that early morning moment with me and the mirror I’m happy to pay more for ‘the best a man can get’. That’s Gillette’s why – and it’s worked for years.

It’s not all clean cut. 

The challenge of this marketing stuff, is that it’s not easy. Some brands can really benefit from a bold, relevant and genuine social purpose. Others, like Nike, can happily surf the zeitgeist and reap the rewards. But not everyone can. And not everyone should.

Sometimes you’re a yoghurt, an office chair, or a razor. Remember It’s okay to be proud of that. Or as Gillette used to say – “the best a man can get.”

That’s what I reckon, what do you think?

​ ​

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Readings present revised plan for Courtenay Central

  • Property
  • May 16, 2019
  • Radio New Zealand
Readings present revised plan for Courtenay Central

The company that owns Courtenay Central in Wellington says it has big plans for redeveloping the complex - which is closed due to earthquake risks.

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How to tell if you're a born retailer

  • Opinion
  • May 16, 2019
  • David Farrell
How to tell if you're a born retailer

Retail is a profession, but true retailers are born not made, says Dave Farrell.

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Sustainable soap wrapper among major winners at Pride In Print Awards

  • Opinion
  • May 15, 2019
  • Sue Archibald
 Sustainable soap wrapper among major winners at Pride In Print Awards

A sustainable, heat sealed soap wrapper that is claimed to saving tonnes of PET plastic film, petrochemical wax and glue from landfill each year, has won a major award in the Pride In Print industry awards. Sue Archibald, Pride in Print Awards manager, shares more.

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Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

 
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Inside Little Yellow Bird’s equity crowdfunding campaign

  • News
  • May 15, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
Inside Little Yellow Bird’s equity crowdfunding campaign

Wellington social enterprise Little Yellow Bird is seeking to scale its ethical apparel operation to the next level with an equity crowdfunding campaign.

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Auckland design agency wins gold for retail packaging

  • News
  • May 14, 2019
  • Courtney Devereux
Auckland design agency wins gold for retail packaging

As a benchmark for impeccably designed packaging of consumer products, The Dieline Awards this year saw creative agency Onfire walk away with recognition for fantastic design for their retail products. We spoke with Matt Grantham, creative director at Onfire Design, about the importance of a strong visual brand in the retail product sector.

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BYO containers policy live from June 1 at Foodstuffs stores

  • News
  • May 14, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
BYO containers policy live from June 1 at Foodstuffs stores

Customers at Foodstuffs supermarkets’ instore butchery, seafood counter, delicatessen and bakery will be able to have food packed into their own clean, leak-proof containers from June 1.

Read more
 
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