And now for a completely different perspective

October 30, 2008

 

 

Every now and again it makes sense to step outside your own culture into someone else’s. That’s why I love engrishfunny.com and the original, engrish.com.  For a totally different view of T-shirts, food and beverages, signage, look at them through (mostly) Asian eyes. These sites are good for you on a number of levels.

 

  • They’re often extraordinarily funny. And as we all know, laughter is good for your general health and a great stress reliever.
  • They prod you, even temporarily, out of your existing mindset, which is always good for finding creative solutions to problems.
  • They’re a reminder of how what makes perfect sense in one language and culture may have very different results in another.

The Japanese, for example, think poo is cute; they even wear little poo-shaped pendants as jewellery or afix thme to their mobile phones as charms. (For all the extraordinary Japanese cellphone accessories you could want, go here.)  These toys and accessories make no sense in Western culture, but they do make sense in Japan which, incidentally, is ranked as the world’s best market to launch new products.

 

 

 


Should brands cut back on marketing during a recession?

October 27, 2008

Famed investor Warren Buffett understands the value of the brand. As a shareholder in Kraft, Coca-Cola, Anheuser-Busch, Wrigley’s etc, he sees these entities as ‘low risk’ for himself and his company, Berkshire Hathaway, because they have enormous brand equity. Buffett understands that brand equity is important as it means that his investment can sustain its pricing even when the economy goes into recession. To quote Philip Kotler: ‘Great brands are the only route to sustained, above-average profitability’. So the question  is – if brand equity is a potential buffer to recessional effects, why would the marketing budget be the first place to cut costs? Read the rest of this entry »