Monday, May 10, 2010

The Timeliness of Profit

"Profit is a function of time" as simple as this phrase may sound, it holds inbound wisdom. Profit, like everything else in a business, is calculated periodically. While the balance sheet gives you a snapshot of your state of affairs, this image might be misguiding you.

Expenses, per say, are incurred directly, even if their benefits are to be depreciated over a long time. This does not appear in your "snapshot" as the costs will be directly registered and the income statement might display a loss for the period at hand.
Had you been talking about inventory, the "just-in-time" policy success might be credited to this profit and time relationship. Yet it only simplifies the process of monitoring losses. In reality, had you been a retailer, buying a bulk of items at once can significantly reduce costs. Yet it makes your balance sheet look like a total disaster, as expenses will certainly outweigh sales for that period of time.

Marketing is no different. Had you understood the advantage of investing at once to procure long-term sales as opposed to instant gratification, you would realize the advantages of big integrated marketing campaigns. Keep in mind that marketing goes under "expenses" in the income statement and that the profits will only be accrued in the future.

Buying inventory progressively, might well be a safe bet, but it makes you lose your bargaining edge and increases your costs. You would indeed be making profits, but you would not be operating with your full potential as initial costs of goods would be high. Likewise, investing in marketing progressively gets you "some" sales, yet you lose the crescendo effect of an integrated campaign.

My point? The same marketing expenses invested at once would generate much more sales than the same amount invested progressively. Take the plunge, even if in your periodical business management reasoning, it looks bad. In the long run, it will appear to be sound judgment.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Advertising Trends in Lebanon: Spring 2010

The advertising trends in Lebanon for spring 2010 are theme-centered: Spotted! Brands go where the consumers' consumption patterns are headed for the season... and where is the Lebanese consumer at?

Here's the showdown: Weddings, swimwear and the FIFA world cup!

To kick off, it's weddings season soon! Pictures of expensive jewelery designs, fancy hair does and a whole lot of wedding dresses, ...uhm, where are we? ...oh right, the highway from Beirut to Jounieh.

advertising lebanonadvertising lebanonadvertising lebanonadvertising lebanonadvertising lebanonadvertising lebanon

Not to forget, summer is at the door too!... and how can we forget? It's sunny, and fighting off the heat, the roads are filled with ladies wearing bikinis, yes, I am talking about the likes of H&M and Diamony billboards. Oh, right and Vichy has figured it was good timing for its cellulite-free products. Good thinking.
advertising lebanon
But the best, is for the last! The Lebanese World Cup craze is ready to blow! You will find the weirdest combination of advertisers here, from the more rational shopping items like big flat TV screens (at least one logical match!), we have witnessed everything from Fransabank Credit Cards to Spinneys supermarket ads!

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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Nivea "You WOW" Internet Marketing

Following the Crest White Pearl's internet campaign "My Crest Smile", Nivea launches yet another digital marketing campaign in Lebanon "You Wow" (more of a Middle-East campaign actually) targeting the superficial layer of the society.
Using the Middle East Nivea Facebook fan page, people are encouraged to upload pictures of themselves in order to be the new model for a Nivea promotion: Angel Star. The competition has 2 stages: the first, where a panel of judges picks 5 finalists, and the second where a voting among the finalists takes place.

internet marketing lebanon
This time, the implementation leaves me pondering.

First, the ads appear in Arabic on Facebook, which in Lebanon is often linked to the lower market segments. Not a smart choice, given that Facebook users in Lebanon are by default using the English interface and are rarely part of that segment.
Second, the campaign only relies on voting in the second part of the competition, not so bright. It looses the edge of word-of-mouth, social and viral marketing that the web 2.0 marketing campaigns tend to rely on. Moreover, no comments are enabled on the website, and there's very low interactivity.

All in all, "You WOW" might be a good casting tool, but quite a weak marketing one! ...I can guarantee that it is not operating with its full potential.

Garnier PureActive Internet Marketing

Garnier recently initiated a digital marketing campaign in Lebanon... And as the competition draws to an end, I am lead to congratulate Garnier for executing a successful, highly interactive internet marketing campaign in Lebanon. As Garnier adopts the Facebook social interface to promote the launching of their PureActive line of products in Lebanon, more than 6,000 fans join in...

internet marketing lebanon
Description: Using a Facebook Fan page, Garnier chooses themes for people to upload pictures, and thus, become candidates. Voting takes place on Garnier's Facebook Application. The candidate with the highest number of votes wins.
Target: teenagers in Lebanon
Promotion: internet ads
Execution: Facebook Application (voting interface)
Rewards: Mac & iPod
The beauty of it all is the high interaction taking place between the moderator of the group and the fans.
It is great to witness that brands are becoming so easily accessible to their customers...

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Google Adds a Virtual Keyboard

Google lebanon
Google has launched a virtual keyboard (previously found under allowing you to type foreign characters into Google searches using a QWERTY keyboard... 35 languages are activated so far... Including Arabic. Check the for the Lebanese version. Cheers.

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