There are many reasons that companies decide they need to transform their corporate image. Sometimes there’s a new CEO with a new vision. Sometimes the company has made a series of acquisitions that have expanded the portfolio. Often it’s just because executives feel the current image is not edgy enough. (We need more innovation! Our data is so big! We live in a cloud!)
Whatever the reason, the desire for image transformation often leads to a big investment in brand awareness – but not always a wise one. There is usually a television ad that looks something like this:
A time-lapse view of a gleaming cityscape with clouds rushing over it. People walking across the street really fast. A tall woman in a pencil skirt delivering a presentation in a modern conference room. Snow-capped mountains and fields of flowers. Wind turbines and/or solar panels. A bullet train. A huge room full of servers. Electronic zig-zags of color. A shot from outer space looking back at the Earth. Cue the logo.
After all this dazzling imagery, the viewer is left wondering “What was that? Who was that? Why? When will my program start again?” Many of these ads are heavy on brilliant imagery and light on the actual message. If you were blindfolded, you couldn’t tell one from another.
Enter GE with its smart new ad campaign: “What’s The Matter With Owen?” I encourage you to take a few minutes to check out these three spots. Thank you, GE, for resisting the planes/skyscrapers/daisies motif and reminding us of the power of storytelling on a human scale. Some reasons I love these ads:
Is your company undergoing a brand transformation? Are you having difficulty measuring the value of reputation programs? Looking to connect corporate brand and employment brand? We’d love to share the best practices we’ve learned through conversations with hundreds of b-to-b clients. Check out our Strategic Communications Management page, or contact our friendly sales professionals.
Julie Ogilvie is a Senior Research Director of Strategic Communications Management at SiriusDecisions. She has held a variety of leadership roles in marketing and communications in her 20+ year career, for both B2B and B2C companies. Follow her on Twitter at @julieogilvie.