Advertising is just a small slice of marketing. If your world of marketing knowledge is limited to TV commercials, there’s a whole library of sexy, innovate examples available beyond trite advertising.
What are the differences between marketing and advertising? Check out some of my favorite marketing practices to see why it’s like comparing apples to oranges:
- Advertising: Honda’s $1M commercial of a Rune Goldberg Machine (admittedly, it’s pretty sweet).
- Marketing: Toyota’s Scion, the most successful automobile launch in history, uses zero advertising, waiting for its hyper-targeted 20-somethings to find the obscure brand. Instead of marketing an off-the-lot car, Scion is customization and personalization. It’s successful–over 50% of Scion owners mod their car.
- Advertising: Subway’s $5 Footlong jingle/promotion, and the huge media buy to support it.
- Marketing: Discounting isn’t only way to leverage price. Clever restaurant owners know that whole numbers suggest premium food (e.g., Fillet Mignon: $65 vs. $64.98). And the brilliant ones purposely place an expensive item on the menu to rationalize the price of other dishes (e.g., $100 steak among average $30 items make the latter reasonable, mid-range choices).
- Advertising: Cereal giants General Mills and Kellogg’s spend millions of dollars on printed coupons in newspaper inserts.
- Marketing: Sales are heavily influenced by the placement of cereal brands in the grocery aisle. Be it the top/bottom/middle shelf, or the highly coveted end-cap, distance from shopper’s eye-level is directly correlated with revenue. Check out the book Science of Shopping for more info; the author studies this type of behavior for a living.
- Advertising: Crest’s million dollar Facebook advertising for it’s White Strips Fan Page (friend count as of 4/20: 10,021).
- Marketing: The 4 categories of Crest White Strips — classic, premium, pro-effects, and advanced seal (each incrementally price-increased by $10). It’s not four products here. As one of the most successful marketing companies in history, Proctor and Gamble realizes its consumers are rational and stupid. It’s a simple marketing trick called tiered pricing. Among teeth-whitening consumers, some enthusiasts will pay $50 for whitening strips. Others are skeptical, and will only pay $20. By offering four products with increasingly packaging fanciness, P&G tricks customers to pay close to their price point. Genius.
- Advertising: Soverign Bank’s recent advertising swarm, consisting of employees riding segways around the city passing out $150 coupons for a new checking account.
- Marketing: American Express’s Black Card. I didn’t modify the previous sentence because the Black Card is marketing. Cardmembers pay $5,000+$2,500 annually to own a piece of metal (Amex makes the card out of titanium instead of plastic). The benefits are mediocre, but people crave the Black Card because of its manufactured prestige. Zero advertising. You cannot apply. Amex “taps” you.