June 2010 Archives

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Season 4: "Looking For the Admen in Madmen"

Airs on Radio One: 
Saturday 26 June, 2010 10am
Monday  28, 2010 11:30am

The Emmy-winning TV series "Mad Men" is all the rage right now. The writing is remarkable, the Madison Avenue characters riveting, and it has been praised as being true to the early 60s period it depicts. As with any show that begins to work its way into pop culture, it is slowly becoming regarded as an accurate record of the advertising business.

But is it?

Join Terry O'Reilly this week as he analyzes the show, compares it to the real advertising world he works in daily, and searches for the Admen in Mad Men.

Listen to this episode as streaming audio (runs 27:30)


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Season 4: "Ask Terry Some More" episode & Live Chat

Why do commercials seem to play louder than the programs they sponsor?  Why do advertisers seem so obsessed with younger consumers?  Why do so many ads portray husbands and fathers as idiots? Terry O'Reilly dips into the 'ol Age of Persuasion mailbag and tackles the question's he's asked the most.  He'll explain how advertising changed after 9/11, and offer up his candidate for the worst ad on the air.

Listen to this episode as streaming audio (runs 27:30)

On on Friday June 18th, Terry joined us for a live chat to answer your questions.

Do have a another question for Terry? Ask it here

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Season 4: "More Remarkable Brands"

Airs on Radio One: 
Saturday 12 June, 2010 10am
Monday 14 June, 2010 11:30am

Brands aren't just products on shelves.  Brands are people, and places, and events, and moments in time: anything that leaves a distinct emotional impression.  This week, Terry checks under the hood of a handful of fascinating brands, to see what makes them tick. One is the only 'A' list celebrity to survive the entire television age.  One is an unforgettable era.  Another is a cultural icon.  And one may be the world's most spectacular piece of real estate. Terry explains the magic of these mighty brands, and what makes them unforgettable.

Listen to this episode as streaming audio (runs 27:30)

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Luxury Advertising

Airs January 15th/20th

Luxury Marketing is a category that is completely different from traditional brand marketing - because it is in the business of selling fantasy. We'll look at the top 10 most powerful luxury brands in the world (six of which were created at almost the same time in the 19th century) and we'll analyze luxury marketing techniques. Most of all, we'll delve deep into our collective psyches to examine why we all desire expensive products in our lives -and what that really says about our inner selves.

Listen to this episode as streaming audio (runs 26:30)
Or subscribe to the podcasts by RSS or by iTunes.

Below are all the TV commercials and print elements we referred to in the show, as well as some bonus material. Enjoy.
The way to sell luxury items is to sell fantasy.

It is the "Dream Business."

Luxury marketers have to "create" a vision of the future that propels their customers to a place they could not have imagined themselves.

Few marketers do it better than Chanel. For years, they have set the standard for fantasy-fueled TV commercials, beginning with this one from 1979:

Remember the opening lyric to Queen's first big hit, "Killer Queen?" It said "She keeps Moet et Chandon, in a pretty cabinet..." For years, I wondered what that meant. Now I know. The number seven most power luxury brand is Moet & Chandon champagne.
The ultimate symbol of wealth and taste. Founded in 1743, the company sells over 26 million bottles of bubbly annually.

Here's a film promoting Moet & Chandon starring Scarlett Johansson:

Dom Perignon is another powerful brand when it comes to champagne. Here is a film shot by fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld, who also sells fantasy in his fashion lines:

Tiffany & Co is a study in class and branding. Their patented blue boxes have set many hearts a-fluttering. Here's a beautifully shot commercial with Sarah Vaughn providing the lovely soundtrack:

Buying luxury goods says many things about our inner selves. Sometimes it is conspicuous consumption (a phrase coined in 1899), which is the need to show off your extravagance. Sometimes this need can be a big statement, like a Mercedes (narrated by Mad Men's Jon Hamm):

Sometimes luxury means wanting to belong to an exclusive group. Membership has its privileges, as seen in this American Express ad.

Another way marketers advertise luxury brands is to link them to a celebrity. I have long believed that the concept of "prestige" must be transferred. A product, on its own, isn't prestigious until it's seen in the right company.

Like this campaign for Gucci, with actor James Franco:

But maybe the best, and most famous, celebrity campaign was for Blackglama Mink Coats. It ran for 30 years, and has recently re-appeared in the pages of Vanity Fair.

It was the ultimate use of transferring prestige from legendary personalities to a little-known association of mink farmers. It put Blackglama on the map. Click on "Campaign" then on "Legends Galley":

The very underpinning of Madison Avenue is based on the notion that you are really two people: The person you are, and the person you want to be.

The dreams and fantasies that luxury marketing weaves only want to talk to person number two.

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Season 4: "Categories"

Airs on Radio One: Saturday 5 June, 2010 10am Monday 7 June 2010 11:30am

Originally Aired on Radio One: Saturday 13 February, 2010 10am Monday 15 February 2010 11:30am

All ads are not alike. Not when you consider the ad 'categories' they come from. This week, Terry O'Reilly tours major ad categories- from automotive to confections, from fast food to banking: each with its own personality, rules and language. He'll show how vastly different the tourism category is from, say, no-for-profit or sports marketing. He'll show how ad categories can be big, small, fascinating, and, in at least one case, downright mysterious.
Listen to this episode as streaming audio (runs 27:30)

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