Google+ Consumer Psyche: The smell of desperation

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Monday, September 27, 2010

The smell of desperation

Don't throw away that hard earned trust by sounding desperate. It won't do any good for you or your brand. Desperation makes you feel down, makes me, the consumer, re-evaluate your brand value, your worth and question your intentions, may be even loathe you! Let me explain.

Watching India's got talent Khoj 2, I almost fell off my couch laughing at Tata Docomo's effort. After Diwakar and Sonia performed their act (they were good enough to win the competition), they were given a chance to make a call which was sponsored by Docomo. The whole effort looked forced and the name of the sponsors was mentioned on the call. I have had a really good opinion about Tata Docomo till now due to their innovative plans ranging from the one paisa per sms to the ISD calls at the same price. I also loved the way their ads were. In fact Docomo ads appeal to me more than Vodafone's Zoo Zoo's do. But this particular effort was pointless. It defies the cardinal logic of marketing in many ways. Let's see what went wrong.
  1. It interrupted the whole proceeding: the act and my train of thought.
  2. It was unsolicited, disturbing. Your loyal customers don't need you reminding their brand name. Your critics don't just care. So if you are looking at doing the new choose your target when you do it.
  3. Sounded out of place. Could have been orchestrated in a better way. Sonia (the caller) was too excited about making it to the final. Sonia's mother, who was on the other end of the call, didn't seem to have a clue about Docomo facilitating the call. The whole message was lost on both the players and the audience.
  4. It was completely unnecessary, so I not only chose to ignore but got -ve feeling about the brand.
  5. Nothing new or usage point (which would've made more sense). I don't need to be reminded of the brand name. My utility in the game, yes.
Guess what, this act by Docomo put a dent in my idea and perception on what I feel. I smell desperation.When a customer smells desperation, that isn't good for your brand. Who breaks a butterfly upon a wheel?
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