No Such Thing As a Free Launch
To many, the rise of Internet blogs and viral marketing seemed to
spell gloom and doom for traditional marketing of consumer packaged goods.
But two studies released this month indicate companies shouldn’t
scrap the tried and true just yet, and they should be prepared to put money
behind their new brands, even if they’re looking for attention
through free media.
Nielsen BuzzMetrics reports that the companies that
spend the most on traditional media also tend to generate the most Internet
buzz. According to the study “The Origin & Impact of CPG New
Product Buzz,” the top 10 percent of new products with the most
Internet buzz spent nearly $20 million in paid media for the launch. The
next 40 percent of products were backed with an average $15 million in
marketing spending, and the remainder spent an average of $5 million.
“Splintering media, along with emerging
consumer-generated media are challenging one-way, mass-media advertising
models,” said Robert Mooth, author of the study, in a statement.
“However, our analysis shows that traditional mass media continues to
play a critical role for most CPG brands. What has changed is that online
buzz and consumer expression have entered the fray, resulting in a complex,
yet inseparable relationship within the overall marketing mix for many
types of products.”
Bloggers potentially can feature any product, but the
report says 85 percent of Internet content came from only 10 percent of
products. Edgy brands — as any energy drink maker will tell you
— are among the top 10 percent of products discussed on the Web.
Everyday items are far less likely to stand out online.
As if on the same wavelength, Information Resources
Inc. also released its new Long-term Drivers Consortium study. Among the
findings: television advertising and distribution are key drivers of
long-term growth. The company measured five years of brand histories across
10 product categories to sort short-term success from long-term, and found
TV advertising was the largest driver of success .
In the Web’s defense, the BuzzMetrics study did
provide “the first-ever evidence that buzz volume can positively
influence sales.” The moral of the story: newer isn’t
necessarily better, but it can be very complementary.
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