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Friday, 4 October 2013

Integrate fried chicken into your life





We’ve been learning a lot about Integrated Marketing Communications lately in our Master of Marketing. It’s been an eye opening experience, and now I see the world around me so much clearer. Maybe ‘clearer’ isn’t the right term… I see the world around me with a critical eye; constantly trying to decipher what is being communicated to me through subtle techniques, suggestive words and semiotics. I had become adjusted to the idea that advertisers are very clever with their ‘selling.’ This was until I turned on the T.V one night, and it all caught me off guard…

 

From 7pm, Channel Nine turns into a station dedicated for KFC. Okay, maybe I am exaggerating a bit. The TVC’s at every break of Big Brother is pretty standard when you are trying to buy up a primetime spot for your brand. But it was the conclusion of the episode that really made my jaw drop: after being on a restrictive diet, Big Brother rewards the housemates with KFC. Housemates go wild! KFC sales skyrocket?

I did a quick Google search, and since KFC were also the sponsors of last year’s Big Brother, there are endless moments where housemates enjoyed large amounts of fried food on screen. A conversation for another time is what about the ethical issues surrounding children seeing these fit, good-looking people on TV consuming large amounts of low nutrient, high-calorie food?

I understand this is pretty typical for sponsors to be integrated into shows – Top Gear does it, X Factor does it, but I couldn’t help but be irritated. The TVC’s were fine, they were executed with quality, I simply just got bored of it all – and having the episode close with another bucket of chicken really hit the nail in the coffin for me. I don’t usually watch Big Brother (or much of any reality T.V really), but I certainly won’t be tuning into KFC hour again.

Then it made me think: is this doing the same thing to other potential customers? Perhaps oversaturation can be just as detrimental to your brand as a lack of presence?

This idea of oversaturation can apply to amazing and inspiring TVC’s too. In our Integrated Marketing Communications class, we talked about how the most clever and original ads can lose its effect if audiences get bored of it quickly. It’s about walking the fine line of being interesting and being irritating.

I think it’s smart to sponsor a high-rated and popular T.V show. But I think it’s smarter if you can create a campaign that isn’t so transparent and will inspire your audience embrace your brand.

Hongi  Luo
Current student in the
Master of Marketing program at the University of Sydney Business School





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