Monday, January 18, 2010

Marketing Observations from England

I have just spent a few weeks in snowy England for Christmas and made the following marketing observations.

  1. KFC still use “Finger Licking Good” instead of the Aussie “Can’t beat that taste”.
  2. When I was in England last time, in 2006, every 2nd ad was for debt consolidation. Now, in 2009/10, every 2nd ad is for websites that compare services e.g. car insurance, rates, utilities.
  3. Radio 1, a popular BBC run FM station, included “breaking Tweets” from celebrities read out during news bulletins. e.g. “Breaking Tweet from Robbie Williams - “Just announced upcoming tour dates”.
  4. I didn’t give a shit about Twitter while I as away for 3 weeks and I didn’t miss it. Interestingly, 40 people still chose to follow me.
  5. Coco Pops positions itself as an after school snack for kids. Check out the commercial on the right.
  6. One of the equivalents of Coles or Woolies in the UK is Tescos.
    • Good – They have a massive fridge full of fresh sandwiches. Great tasting and great value. Supermarkets would make a killing in Australia if they took this approach. I don’t know about you but I am getting a bit sick and tired of paying $8-9 for a sandwich which is so obviously made with ingredients bought at the supermarket anyway.
    • Good – They have mores semi-prepared food options. For example, fresh options that just need a little more prepping to be ready for dinner.
    • Bad – You have to pack your own bags. This just slows the whole process up as if you don’t have those recyclable bags. The the cashier has to stop scanning to unravel bags and then throw them at you! Then, if you don’t pack quickly enough both the cashier and the others in the line glare at you because the cashier can’t start scanning and sending items down the chute. Bizarre.
    • Neutral but interesting – the checkout chicks all sit down at the register.
  7. Warm beer is a fucked idea. I wouldn’t feed it to my dog.

This one isn’t really a a marketing observation but interesting nonetheless. Once when I was in England somebody told me that all houses who have a TV  have to pay for a TV licence. The government checks this by sending a van around where they point a scanner at the house to see if you have a TV but haven’t paid a licence. I thought they were pulling my leg but apparently it is true. A licence costs $250 per year!