It’s been a busy week in the marketing world, here’s what has caught our eye!
Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram told the City Region’s first Digital Summit that a combination of world-class connectivity and predictable renewable energy can make Liverpool a magnet for global tech investment. Rotheram highlighted the UK’s most powerful computing centre at the Hartree Centre, Material’s Innovation Factory and Sensor City, as well as an emerging cluster of tech companies beginning to make a real global impact. He said his twin priorities would be to invest in world-class digital infrastructure – linking directly to the GTT trans-Atlantic cable that reaches the UK at Southport – and exploiting the area’s unique potential for renewable energy by harnessing the power of the River Mersey.
You would be forgiven for thinking Polaroid was dead, with the age of digital photography resulting in the majority of instant camera brands going the way of the dodo. Yet, against all odds, Polaroid is about to launch its first new analogue camera since 2003. Now rebranded as Polaroid Originals, the retro brand’s head of global marketing Martin Franklin says it is currently scaling up production having “steadily grown” its sales since Impossible Project took over nearly 10 years ago. In particular, Franklin believes the so-called “Stranger Things effect” has been incredibly beneficial to the brand. The Netflix sci-fi fantasy TV series is set in the 1980s and pays homage to the decade’s Spielbergian aesthetic, with retro devices such as Polaroid cameras and Atari consoles regularly popping up. “Thanks to Stranger Things, people are enamoured by that 1970s and 1980s aesthetic,” he adds. “From a marketing perspective, we really want to use digital channels and experiential to focus on the ‘wow’ moment of a polaroid being printed out.
The Advertising Standards Authority’s (ASA) new chairman Lord David Currie has raised concerns over the “unforeseen consequences” of legalising gambling advertising on TV and radio 10 years ago. Speaking to Marketing Week just two weeks into the role, Currie says the ad regulator has been “quite tough” on individual ads. Just last month, it banned ads from Ladbrokes, SkyBet, Casumo and 888 run by affiliates (which are paid a commission for finding new customers) that suggested a man could fund his wife’s cancer treatment by betting online. “There were four that were banned last month where the gambling companies had relied on their affiliates and didn’t really know what was being done on their behalf. They have learned their lesson from that. They were in a bad place because they were causing deep offence. Being tough on those sorts of ads is what the ASA can do,” he explains.
Coca-Cola is looking for more opportunities in premium segments and craft beverages as it looks to jump on the “resurging trend” and drive growth. The company has just revamped the Schweppes brand in the UK and launched a new range of premium mixers, Schweppes 1783. Meanwhile, in Spain it has introduced Royal Bliss, a new premium mixer brand only sold in the on-premise channel. Coca-Cola is also building a foundation in “sophisticated flavours” with brands including Appletiser in Europe.
Amazon is constantly on the look-out out for ways to make delivery faster and more convenient. One of the key issues in delivery is that customers aren’t always home when a package is being dropped off, but Amazon thinks it has come up with a novel solution. For $249.99, customers can now buy a smart lock and connected camera which, once in place, will mean an option for “in-home delivery” appears when ordering. If picked, the service, dubbed Amazon Key, allows Amazon’s couriers to gain access to customers’ homes so they can deposit orders directly in people’s homes. Amazon is hoping to alleviate the trust issue with the connected camera. It will record the drop-off and send the video to the customer along with a confirmation of delivery so they can see all is in order. Amazon Key is available on more than 10 million items, although anything that is big and bulky isn’t included. Currently, the service is only available in 37 US cities where Amazon Logistics is responsible for the delivery. But the hope is to expand it more widely in future.