Is your brand struggling to create more meaningful marketing?

Picture this:  a blank interview room, white background screens, lights, and a single chair for the interviewee.  She's sharing an emotional, heartfelt conversation about her work.  She's a fire fighter, or law enforcement, maybe in the military talking about working overseas.  She's wearing full make-up.  The lighting in the studio is just right.  You only see her face.  She's a real life hero, talking about someone's life she saved.  But as she's talking, the "layers" of the shoot start peeling away...first the special lighting that highlights her perfectly, then the filters.  Next you see her face continue to transform as all the make up comes off slowly, and what's left is just her, no make up, no enhancements.  And just as we enter the final scene where she gets to the most emotional highlight of the story about saving someone's life, all in the line of duty, how she doesn't consider herself a hero, and how she'd do it again in a heartbeat, the camera zooms out and we see that she's an amputee, an injury incurred during this heroic effort.  The commercial ends with:  Real beauty is beyond skin deep.  Neutrogena, celebrating real.

How did you feel reading that?  Were you able to connect with her? With her story?  Did it give you a good feeling about the brand Neutrogena?  How many beauty product commercials do you remember that stand out in your mind?

We started with a story (your brain likes stories) about a real life person (authenticity and relatability) that's done an incredible thing (emotional engagement) that allows us to connect with her.  This, in turn, causes us to associate the positive feelings about the story to this brand, which helps the brand stand out in our minds (an ingredient that is necessary in marketing today if you want to stay relevant). 

To take it up a notch, if the woman was a firefighter (one of the proposed options), this would have created even deeper resonance in your brain, in particular if you live in California.  This is because due to all the wildfires currently ravaging the state, the devastation of fires and the positive outpouring towards firefighters is even more prevalent and emotionally significant.  

ENGAGE: Think of a marketing campaign you have currently for your brand and see if you can identify the factors listed above in this ad (authenticity, emotional engagement, etc).  Contact me and let's see if we can kick it up a notch and transform informational into unforgettable.   



Photo Credit: The New York Times - November 1, 2013 - "Far Out on a Limb" by Deirdre Dolan - Photographs by Nadav Kander