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Don’t Let Your Brand Awareness Campaign Make Prospects Cringe

by Ryan Gartman

In the words of Sir Richard Branson, “Your brand is only as good as your reputation.” Every company, no matter their size, revenue or industry, should live out this mantra. Why? Because establishing positive brand awareness is essential for growing sales and attracting top talent. The challenging part is creating a strategic campaign with tactics that successfully position you as an industry leader and resource among your target audience. To see proof, take a look at two notorious brand awareness fails below!

Pepsi Misses The Mark with Live for Now advertisement

The outcry from Pepsi’s 2017 brand awareness faux pax demonstrates that no brand is safe from making social mistakes. In a TV commercial that spanned more than 2:30 minutes, Pepsi presented itself as a peacekeeper when Kendall Jenner magically eased tensions between a group of protesters and a police force by offering a can of Pepsi to a policeman.

While this commercial was quickly pulled and an apology was released, it is a great example for all brands to understand the importance of not trivializing important social issues. Instead, align yourself with trending topics that strategically ladder back to your products or services.  

Public Relations: Fyre Festival Delivers the Ultimate “Over Promise, Under Deliver”

Music artist Ja Rule and businessman Billy McFarland failed on many, many levels when promoting the Fyre Media brand with a “luxury music festival” dubbed Fyre Festival. Unfortunately, concertgoers who shelled out thousands of dollars for tickets to the “fun-filled” getaway in the Bahamas arrived to a barren ghost town. Social media and traditional news outlets quickly caught wind of the conditions, and stories of experience went viral within hours.

Many things can be learned from the failings of Fyre Festival. First and foremost, do not promote an event, product or service if it has not been battle tested and/or isn’t ready for primetime. It only takes a simple social post for something to go viral. The second lesson is to be as transparent as possible with your customers. Not only will they appreciate the honesty, but they will become more likely to share your services with their network, which increases your overall brand awareness.

At Red Caffeine, we want clients to gain recognition, loyalty and advocacy, whether they are a “best-kept secret” or entering a new industry. We first work with companies to establish a strategic brand foundation through effective +strategy, +branding, +marketing and +technology. Next, we plan, create and execute an integrated campaign to get in front of the target audience. When your ideal customers are repeatedly exposed to your brand in a positive way, you become top-of-mind when they are ready to place an order.

Looking to get your organization’s name out there for all the right reasons? Get in touch with us to avoid a brand awareness mishap.