Brand Management, CAMPAIGNS, News, Strategies

2013's Biggest April Fools' Day Marketing Announcements

What can brand marketers do to build trust in the brands they manage? The answer is to fool the customers, Only one…

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What can brand marketers do to build trust in the brands they manage? The answer is to fool the customers, Only one day every year when you are allowed to fool your customers and even make your customers laugh and love your brand more ! Its April Fools’ Day.

We shed the light on how famous brands used April Fools’ Day

Google Maps – treasure map feature//

 

Google – smell feature “nose”//

 

Sony – creates headphones for cats//

sony-cans
Sony produced a series of images of cats wearing the new headphones.

 White House – makes announcement using Kid President//

 

Virgin – glass bottomed airplane //

Virgin Atlantic Airlines creates glass bottomed airplane
Virgin Atlantic Airlines creates glass bottomed airplane

BMW –  PRAM 600

BMW PRAM 600
limited edition BMW P.R.A.M. (Postnatal Royal Auto Mobile)

 

Nokia – develops a microwave//

Nokia develops a microwave
Nokia microwave

 

 

YouTube – shutting down//

 

Nesquik – broccoli flavored milk//

Nesquik debuts broccoli flavored milk
Nesquik broccoli milk

 

 U.S. Army – military cat program//

us-militarycats
US Military Cats Program

 

Bing –  search for Google//

bing-google
Bing gives you a treat if you search for “Google” on their site

 

What do you think?
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News

Netflix continues to push into MENA’s entertainment industry with OSN

The world’s leading internet entertainment service is getting a little help from the region’s leading paid subscription television services in…

The world’s leading internet entertainment service is getting a little help from the region’s leading paid subscription television services in order to improve MENA region penetration.

Created in 1997, Netflix has become the number one place for people to entertain themselves online. The company has been trying to expand into the MENA region since 2016, when they first launched the service in the region.

In order to improve their reach within the region, Netflix has partnered up with fellow entertainment hub Orbit Show Network (OSN) so “customers will be able to seamlessly access and enjoy all the best entertainment in one place.” (Maria Ferreras, VP Business Development for EMEA at Netflix)

The deal provides OSN users access to Netflix’s large content library, with OSN’s newest boxes, and will allow users the ability to pay for both services in one bill.

According to Netflix’s press release, “The deal will offer access to Hollywood movies, top TV shows, documentaries, independent films, stand-up comedy and a wide range of kid’s titles and Netflix’s critically-acclaimed original programming. Customers will also have access to exclusive series and films in Ultra HD 4K and HDR…”

It is a surprising move from OSN, who has been suffering losses since Netflix’s introduction to the region.

According to Baizat, OSN’s losses can be directly correlated to Netflix’s official appearance in the region, previously used illegally and behind VPNs.

After becoming available in MENA, people were able to officially pay for Netflix subscriptions which may have led to a 10.50% drop in subscribers for OSN.

This partnership deal is Netflix’s first real push into the MENA market, with the internet entertainment service having only two Arab created content series planned so far.

 

Who would the partnership benefit the most?

According to global international analytics company IHS Markit, “[Netflix and Amazon Prime Video] launched in the MENA region in 2016, but a lack of localization resulted in a relatively weak entrance, leaving [them] with just a fifth of the market in 2017. Established players, too, are struggling to rack up subscribers despite some impressive integration practices with the local telecommunication companies.”

IHS Markit stated in a separate report that Netflix would have more to gain from this partnership, stating that they were behind other competitors such as MBC’s Shahid Plus.

It went on to confirm this, “One of the major problems that Netflix is facing in MENA is the lack of partnerships and deals with telcos and pay TV operators that aids the accessibility of its service to the considerably large MENA pay TV subscriber bases.

These partnerships have the added benefit for OTT subscription services of reducing customer acquisition costs and taking the hassle out of having to collect payments in a region with low penetration of credit cards and, in some countries, even bank accounts.”

So, basically, Netflix has a lot to gain from this partnership, a big way into the heart of the MENA region.

Netflix may also help OSN out, who has been having issues with a declining customer base for a few years now, maybe a touch of Netflix will boost its numbers.

 

What else is Netflix doing to further penetration?

One of the greatest things about Netflix lately is their high-quality, award winning self-produced shows, movies and documentaries. The company has also expanded into other languages such as Spanish to improve penetration and content value across the world.

Netflix has been so successful with their original entertainment that they have started poaching from big name production companies, especially famous writers and directors.

Seeing their success rise with original content, Netflix has already decided to try and create localized content for the region as well.

They are already producing Beirut comedian Adel Karam’s “Adel Karam: Live from Beirut,” a comedy show centering discussing “how Lebanese people love kissing each other, their passion for food, hospital classifications, marriage advice” and more.

With Netflix, added together with rival Amazon Prime Video, having only 21% of the local market in 2017, Netflix’s new partnership and content may be exactly what they need to improve their stay.

Netflix may see that they need to create more localized content, but are they doing enough? Let us know in the comments below.

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News

Careem acquires RoundMenu, gunning for UberEATS?

Ramadan is coming up, and all we are going to be thinking about is food, food, and food! In what…

Ramadan is coming up, and all we are going to be thinking about is food, food, and food!

In what could be in preparation for that, ridesharing app Careem has now acquired RoundMenu, an online restaurant ordering, delivery and reserving platform based in the MENA region.

In a statement, Careem stated that the acquisition “is part of a wider investment into the food delivery category.”

RoundMenu currently has a presence in 18 cities across the Middle East, including Cairo and Alexandria, and maintains a partnership with the world’s largest travel site, TripAdvisor.

The acquisition was settled for an undisclosed amount.

 

Could Careem be gearing up for another battlefront with rideshare competitor Uber?

In the hot summers of the Arab region, many of us would prefer to order in.

This is the reason why there is an abundance of shops and restaurants willing to deliver, our growing need to stay in during the melting heat has driven demand to higher levels.

Uber has already jumped on the bandwagon by expanding their UberEATS system into the region.

Last month, Uber announced it will be releasing UberEATS to Egypt soon. The platform allows users to sign in on the app or website, scroll through partnered restaurant menus and order food from Uber.

UberEATS is currently available across more than 200 cities around the world including Dubai and Abu Dhabi. According to the company, UberEATS has been pretty successful in the UAE with orders growing by 169% in the second half of 2017.

Careem’s acquisition of RoundMenu may be a response to the news, seeing as the acquisition happened less than a month after Uber’s announcement.

Could Careem really be preparing to add food delivery to their repertoire in Cairo?

They may even be aiming to cater, through bus sharing app SWVL, from which they acquired a minority share back in July 2017. Who knows? At the very least, we know is that Careem is definitely going to try and enter the same market as Uber and Otlob, Egypt’s reigning online food delivery platform.

Careem has stated that they will be testing delivery capabilities (on small scale) later this month.

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Google launches native ad-blocker to improve Ad standards

After almost a year of preparation, Google has finally released their new native Ad-blocker for Chrome, hopefully pushing advertisers to…

After almost a year of preparation, Google has finally released their new native Ad-blocker for Chrome, hopefully pushing advertisers to improve their ad standards and quality. Google chrome will now automatically filter and disable certain ads and websites that do not adhere to their new set of rules.

Users will not have to fear bad experiences again as websites with pop up ads (with no exit/close button in sight), full volume music when opening webpages, and etc.

The ad-blocker has been in the works for almost a year now, with sources speaking to The Wall Street Journal back in April 2017. The ad-blocker will be turned on by default for all Chrome users.

This is another step for Google, who aims to ensure a better online experience for their users, and to shift the ad industry from intrusive advertising to more subtle and relevant ads.

Google and fellow internet giant Facebook are members of the Coalition for Better Ads, an international industry group that has researched the different forms of web advertising that has annoyed internet users the most.

The group has complied a list of undesirable ads, listing 12 forms of online advertising that advertisers should avoid to provide consumers with the best online experience. Unsurprisingly, the biggest offenders are in mobile.

 

via Coalition for Better Ads

 

The ad-blocking system has been rolling out for a while now, and has already caught some offenders. According to Google’s Engineering Manager Chris Bentzel, “As of February 12, 42% of sites which were failing the Better Ads Standards have resolved their issues and are now passing. This is the outcome we are were hoping for — that sites would take steps to fix intrusive ads experiences themselves and benefit all web users.”

For users, when navigating through websites, the ad-blocker will first check on the website you are about to visit, checking if it is a part of a website that had been flagged as not following the Better Ads Standards. If it is, ads will be automatically blocked.

When this happens, this is how it will look like for users.

 

 

If you’re a website developer or website owner, you can visit Google’s Ad Experience Report to find out if you need to make some changes.

Otherwise, you may receive a 30-day warning from Google about your violations. Ads will not be stopped by default until 30 days after the warning has been issued, and there have been no changes.

 

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CAMPAIGNS, Social Media Intelligence

Karim Abdel Aziz stars Telecom Egypt’s WE localized advertising strategy

Telecom Egypt’s WE finally releases their first real campaign, after their rebranding awareness campaign back in September of last year….

Telecom Egypt’s WE finally releases their first real campaign, after their rebranding awareness campaign back in September of last year. Since its creation, WE has only released ad copies for the World Cup qualifiers.

Releasing the telecommunications company’s first card, the ad plays with local themes and sensibilities. This has become a popular recurring theme in many telecommunications brands this year.

Action star Karim Abdel Aziz stars in WE’s newest ad for their new card, Agda3 card. The ad has fun laughing at how Egyptians deal with fighting and superstars amongst themselves.

 

Within 5 hours, the ad has already gained more than 761k views and 24k positive reactions.

Even though the year has only started, many have already released their own ad copies targeting the very same specific segment of the population. Their weapon of choice? Mostly Mahraganat music and funny culturally-appropriate and appreciated jokes.

But why is there such a strong need to become more localized?

 

Famous blunders

To learn from our mistakes is an accomplishment, but to learn from others’ mistakes is a cost-effective strategy. Brands that have failed to localize their campaigns have often either ended in hilarious or terrible results.

KFC’s famous blunder in China, where KFC’s tagline “fingerlickin’ good!” was translated to “eat your fingers off!” Or, a local example, Cadbury Egypt’s decision to apply Cadbury’s previous global campaign to Egypt without much research, resulting in a popular and hilarious social media frenzy.

We can see localization pay off with another chocolate brand, TODO, whose popular and very localized content has made it a beloved brand.

Trying to catch up

For a long time now, telecom companies have been trying to reach the largest population segment, the lower and lower middle classes, with not always the best of luck. But, a stroke of genius and viral content thrust a new way to reach them.

Orange’s now viral ad, “Shamar Yalla,” boosted Mahraganat music to the forefront of marketers’ screens. Now, almost all across the telecommunications section has moved into the new year, aiming to reach new heights with the same type of content and the same success.

We see this in ads especially with Vodafone, who seems to have decided to focus all their efforts towards this demographic. With their newest ads, and even dealings with current culturally relevant celebrities such as Abla Fahita.

Orange continued the trend with “La2 La2,” and now we see WE entering the fray with their newest ad.

For a long time, Mobinil (Now Orange) was the only major player who would focus marketing efforts towards the country’s largest class. Its rebranding and new strategy when switching to Orange changed that, leaving a large target segment with no real penetration.

Now Orange is back at it, and all the telecom players are still trying to catch up.

Why to localize your campaigns?

Don’t allow your campaign to be “amazing” to the wrong people, campaigns such as Cadbury’s Aliens may have worked brilliantly in other countries and regions, but simply translating voice-overs won’t save you from this blunder.

Create new content with local staff around your already great concept, and localize!

Social Media Insights and Data Analysis

And don’t just listen to what people are saying about your brand, listen to the conversations on your competitors’ social platforms as well. Keep an eye, and webpage, out for problems, complaints and popular happenings.

Creating your campaigns through collected data will provide you with a great insight to your target audience. There is so much data floating around that one day of research could supply you with a strong idea on how to reach your target, and build a culture-proof campaign around it. So, don’t forget to hug your analysts!

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