Tag Archives: marketing

A match made in confusion: Samsung X Heathrow T5

 

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‘Imagine’ is Samsung’s brand slogan so I ask you this, imagine one of the largest and most innovative technology companies partnering with one of the world’s busiest International airports. Surely this would be a match made in heaven, a sponsorship deal based on mutual benefit and an initiative that enhances the passenger experience. Sadly this is not the case. Samsung revealed recently that they have rebrand Heathrow’s famous Terminal 5 as ‘ The Terminal Galaxy S5’ for a two-week period. Firstly, the rebranded terminal name is terrible, an example of pure unimaginative marketing prowess. Surely  ‘The Samsung Galaxy Terminal S5’ would make more sense and have more meaning to an already bemused and flustered traveller.

Now imagine the look on the face of this same passenger when they realise that there really is no benefit to them from this tie-up apart from utter confusion, obtrusive advertisements and signs directing them to Dixons where they can try out the new phone. The problem is that this marketing idea is a daft one based around basic awareness and not engagement. One that is created by one of the most daringly innovative brands of our times, it just doesn’t add up. It is really a sponsorship sell out on behalf of Heathrow who are the only ones who will be surprised and delighted when they see the benefit to their bottom line.

It also speaks volumes about Heathrow’s brand values and their mission to ‘Make every journey better‘. If they were true to their word on this, they would have encouraged Samsung to integrate the S5 into the passenger experience. Maybe create an S5 lounge and give passengers the opportunity to transfer their boarding card onto test models after security, then use the phone for the remaining waiting time at the airport, tweeting pictures and enjoying the product. Where can they run to when they are in a secure zone and their boarding card is on the phone?

In essence, this latest marketing initiative goes against both companies brand values. However, for Samsung it hits harder. The campaign is clunky, unimaginative and basic, the antithesis of what they represent. A little more imagination could have gone a long way.

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Bowled over by Bewleys

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Bear with me on this one, it may take some mild persuasion. Of all places who would have thought that Bewleys would make me stop in my coffee sipping tracks (it was wine actually, but who’s judging).  I would presume that I-like many-hold memories of getting into your Sunday best and taking a trip to Bewleys for a treat. Well my latest evening visit was certainly just that, a ‘treat’ in the customer experience sense. Bewleys are open in the evenings until 11pm, serving wine and uncompromising food at reasonable prices. Gone is the self-service, tricky tray manoeuvring rhetoric of yore.

Back to the experience though and after a rather tempestuous start involving a trivial disagreement over wine glasses, the service mellowed somewhat. The staff were attentive, not over zealous and had personality, much like the beautiful updated environs we sat in. This is the grown up Bewleys, along the way it has matured into a stylish, chilled evening  time haunt.

After a few ticks at the upper echelons of the customer comment card we left, promising prompt return. The only negative is that I think more people don’t know about this after work gem, or maybe it’s for the best, I will selfishly have the place to myself for these much needed cathartic moments of escape.

Like a good ‘brew’, Bewley’s has had  time to infuse and settle but be assured it is now ready to enjoy.

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SKY- Do they believe in better ?

I am partial to a bit of TV, like anyone else it keeps my mind active in less ‘busy’ times . SKY is one of those companies that you think occupy a rather untouchable corporate position. I do have to give them some credit. Their product is rather good, they are innovative and normally their service is what one would expect from an international company. However I have a bone to pick.

The bone that needs picking comes from a casual observation over a couple of weeks. As you know I am a full time lurker and professional observer. SKY has a sort of ‘selling station‘ in Stephen’s Green shopping centre. Now normally you would expect to see the staff handing out deals, engaging with customers and generally ‘selling’. This isn’t the case in said location. I am baffled as to what the staff are there for.

Each time I am lurking, they seem to be catching up with the sport, having a chat with other staff and looking a bit bemused by inquisitive customers who approach them. Is this the best job in the world ? They obviously don’t have sales targets to meet or maybe they are the outpost that SKY has forgotten about.

The pressing point is that this  important touch point that the customer encounters is letting the brand down. All the marketing efforts by SKY are futile if the customer doesn’t get the service on the front line. So the note of caution here is that at each point the customer engages with the brand, it should be a memorable experience, and not for the wrong reasons.

This highlights the importance of the ‘value chain’ theory and how a glitch in a companies processes can cause serious problems. Perhaps it’s time for SKY to believe in better service ?

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Kareem’s Win-Win

Like many of us out there, when I have a techy problem I get all flustered and ponder the complexities of modern technology. I don’t however ponder it too long , I prefer to let the experts do the pondering. Kareem got in contact with us to share his view on customer service, in particular the great help he received from his service provider in relation to his website.

For Kareem the help he got not only was free (and we do love free at this blog) but left him with such a great impression of the company that he wanted to share it. This is the power of great service, it goes way beyond problem resolution. It builds relationships and is a powerful indirect promotional tool for a company.

Kareem provided a great analogy which really sums it up, ” Superior customer service is like having a great friend do you a favour: You feel the urge to repay them not because you’re forced to, but rather because you will feel satisfied in doing so”. 

This emphasis on returning the favour is what companies should be striving for, the aim is that you return the favour with their company only and speak highly of them to others, the essence of brand loyalty.

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Top Marks

A spur of the moment Thursday trip to M&S turned out to be quite the fruitful one. Initially lured in by their €12.50 dinner deal (which cannot be beaten for value) we were greeted by a selection of delightful treats being offered.

Yvonne was just as delightful as her samples, she amazed me with her enthusiasm and knowledge of all things Marks and Spencer. I left feeling knowledgeable  not just about the new range but a whole host of tips and tricks regarding all things cookery.

The most important point though is that Yvonne had bundles of passion without being pushy. She was absolutely brilliant at her job and could sell me a Spanish risotto in an instant, despite my abhorrent dislike for the mini rice dish. There needs to be more Yvonne’s out there !

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