Kenny the perfect choice for IGA

I’ve written recently about choosing the right person to front your advertising campaigns, and the mistakes made by choosing Dr Karl to front the government’s Challenge of Change campaign.

Dr Karl’s own Challenge

The new TV ads for IGA encouraging us to shop independent are a wonderful example of choosing the perfect front man. Everyone loved the movie Kenny, the Aussie battler with the big heart who wins out in the end. Just like Muriel’s Wedding, it’s a real Australian feel-good story. So, it’s very clever of IGA (or rather, their advertising agency) to choose actor Shane Jacobson to be the face of the new IGA campaign, encouraging Aussies to support the locals and shop IGA. His very ‘everyman’ persona makes Kenny the perfect choice for IGA.

IGA ad with Kenny

With Shane’s shopping trolley trip from country through suburbs to city, they’ve cleverly managed to show just about every single target market there is. Just about everybody who sees the ad should be able to relate to someone they see on the screen. And if not, Kenny should be enough to convince you anyway.


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The Sunshine Store brings art to the Adelaide hills

SunshineStoreSignLast Friday, I was taking a water-bag trip from the beach up into ‘them thar’ hills on the invitation of Gordon Kay to visit his Adelaide Hills Business Hub at Woodside. On the way, I spotted a cute little church with a sign out the front saying Art and Treasures. How could I resist?

The Sunshine Store at Verdun
The Sunshine Store is only a few weeks old. It’s an artists collective and according to René, there are 35 artists involved. The little church at Verdun is chockers with beautiful things everywhere you look. Fabulous pieces of art to put on your walls or in your garden, plus gifts, cards, clothes, jewellery and so much more. I only intended to go in for a look but of course, I couldn’t resist buying a few little things for myself and my friends. Quite a few things as a matter of fact.

What I really liked was their advertisingSunshineStoreChurch
Art and Treasures. Great words to use. Because who can resist a treasure hunt? Yellow and black are the colour combination that stands out the most — which is why hazard road signs are in those colours. René’s business card says she’s Lucky Owner of the Sunshine Van & Ambassador for Creativity. Clearly, René doesn’t need a copywriter, that’s just fabulous!!!



The Sunshine Van is really cute
They take it to markets (or they will when it gets a bit warmer) and René told me they are currently looking for a pop-up shop. Check them out at the link below.


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Business directory a Bright idea

My local MP is David Speirs, Member for Bright who is championing small business in his electorate. He’s very proactively come up with the idea of a business directory for the local shop, professional, tradie etc. and is calling for expressions of interest from business owners who would be interested in placing an ad in the directory.


It’s a great way for us all to support local business
While it’s not the place for me to advertise (nobody’s going to be looking for a copywriter in a directory, they will be looking on Google) I think it’s a fantastic idea for the type of business whose customers are locals.

Very good value for money
The directory is going to be distributed to 13,000 local households in Bright. That’s a lot of potential customers! And it’s the kind of thing that people will hang onto for quite a while. Which means longer life for your ad. There’s only room for 100 businesses in the Bright business directory, so if you or anyone you know lives in the area and wants some great value for their advertising dollar, register your interest soon.


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Music as part of branding

When most people think of what constitutes ‘branding’, they think of a logo and the ‘look’ of the website, marketing material, business cards, etc. But branding is so much more than that.

It’s everything from the way the store is laid out, the way a company’s staff interact with customers, the way the phone is answered (or not) the clothes that staff wear, their policies and procedures (or lack of them!), how they deal with complaints. And then of course it’s their products or services, their vehicles (how they are driven, are they clean?) and their advertising. Which brings me to music.

Which TV commercials do you recognise from the music?
I was watching a program on TV and ducked out of the room during a commercial break (as you do) but kept an ear out so I could hear when the program resumed. I could hear the music of a particular ad, which is still relatively new but I could identify it immediately. AirBnB. Their music is quite distinctive and you know that it’s their ad even before you hear the woman speaking or they say the name of the company. The melody is kind of light and breezy, perfect for taking you away. Which is what AirBnB is all about. That’s good branding.

Shops use music as branding all the time
Retail clothing stores at my local shopping centre all have their own music. Sometimes I see something interesting in the window and wander in, only to be assaulted by extremely loud doof-doof ‘noise-pollution’ (as my dad used to call it) which immediately sends the message… ‘Lady, you are WAY too OLD to shop here!’ And I’m out the door.

If you have a shop, it’s worthwhile asking the question: What message does your music send to your customers?


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Kochie delivered at Adelaide Convention Centre

When I was invited to go to the Convention Centre for Tuesday 23 June to hear Kochie speak about small business, I said yes. There was a wait list but I eventually got in. Now, as a small business person I have gone to a million talks, networking events, etc over the years. Some memorable, most not, many a big big waste of time. So I was curious to see which category this one would fit into.

All the speakers were brilliant
Kochie spoke about the challenges to small business. He had a lot of good things to say and case studies to talk about, and from the photos being taken of the screens and the notes being written down, I am sure that everybody there took away some great ideas. The main takeaway messages for me were about having a mentor and about staying open to continuous learning.

Argo is much more than just a coffee shop
This was a theme that was reinforced by Daniel Milky from Argo on The Parade, another speaker at the event. I really liked his saying… ‘When you’re green, you’re growing… when you’re ripe, you rot.” Daniel’s approach to creating much more than a coffee shop was really inspiring. If you aren’t familiar with Argo, google them and check out what they’re up to.

Edible Blooms owner leaves ego at the door
Edible Blooms owner Kelly Baker-Jamieson spoke about out-of-the-box marketing ideas and how she dressed up as a strawberry to hand out flyers. Actually, she spoke about a lot more than that, but as someone who works in advertising and is constantly trying to push my clients out of their comfort zone to help them stand out from the crowd, I just loved hearing those stories.

6 hours for only $55 — save over $800!
If you’re interested in out-of-the-box ideas to help your business stand apart from the rest, contact me. I’d love to help you. Right now, you can get up to 6 hours of my time for $55 — and save over $800. Click here to find out how.

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Who says tyre ads have to be boring?

This ad is not new and maybe it’s only showing online but I think this ad for Bridgestone Tyres is a real work of art. It has probably won some awards and I think it should work its butt off as well. Because what it does so cleverly is put emotion into a commercial for something that is usually pretty bland and boring. Tyres.

The advertisement is very interesting visually and stands out dramatically from the usual ads you see on TV. Shadow puppetry is used in a really clever way — and the movement of the hands makes you pay close attention, so you can try to see how exactly the images are created. Sure, we’ve all done the bunny rabbit, but this takes it to a whole new level!

But it’s not just about making pretty pictures for the sake of it

What makes it really clever is that the use of the hands in the commercial has real relevance — based on good research and one very interesting fact about tyres, which I was really surprised to learn.

The overall message is very strong, and the stark black and white simplicity tells the story beautifully. Because it’s not really about tyres at all — it’s about the safety of you and your loved ones. Nice work.


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Dr Karl does a runner

If you’ve been watching TV lately, or ABCview, you’ve probably seen the government’s commercial with the well-known Dr Karl up on stage, talking about a new report.

Evidently, the Federal Government has commissioned a big report called Challenge of Change. At first glance, it makes sense to choose a spokesperson who is well-known by the people you want to get the message across to. However, it’s very important to make sure that the person you choose is a good fit for the product or service (or in this case, message) that you are selling.

I thought Dr Karl seemed to be a good fit…
…until I heard that he has since distanced himself from the report. Why? Beause this big important report that probably cost tax-payers megabucks doesn’t have any mention of climate change or how it will affect Australia in the future. Gee. I think that’s a bit of an oversight. And Dr Karl is a scientist. Doh!

If you check all this out online, you’ll find quite a bit of argy-bargy about who said what, and how it all happened or didn’t, but at the end of the day the outcome is the same. A bit of a mess. If you have a business, and you choose a well-known personality (or anybody, really) to be the face of your campaign, make sure you’re on the same page.

P.S. I can’t find the ad but if you check out this, I’m sure you’ll know what I’m on about…

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Vehicle signage is tricky

I love good vehicle signage and if you’ve read myVanBackWhatBiz
eBook, you’ll know I’m a big fan of the back of a vehicle because that’s what you’re stuck behind in traffic. However, I have no idea what this van driver’s business is… so just in case you are planning to have some vehicle signage done for your business, please make sure you tell the whole story on the back, not just the ending!





Meanwhile, this Pet Health Network car is fabulously Dalmation dog painted, but there’s no way that you can read the name of the business at all. Unless you’re stopped in traffic behind them, at the lights, like me.



Vehicle signage is tricky. Get one thing wrong and it can be a total waste of money. Make sure you find a signwriter who’s not just great at signwriting but also knows the basics of design and understands how people think and read. And if you ever want to run something past me, please do give me a call… I’d love to help you.


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2 hour consult for only $55

Who says government doesn’t do anything for small business! I’m rapt to announce that the Federal Funding has come through — which means I can help small businesses with a small budget, once again.

Does your business qualify?
Some of you have already had my help on a budget, but this is a brand new round of funding which means we wipe the slate clean and you can apply again. Now, as the saying goes, there’s no such thing as a free lunch which means that there are a few hoops to jump through, and unfortunately not all businesses qualify. But all the details are on my website — just follow the links from the home page.

Save over $200
If you’d like to organise your consult or you have any questions, give me a call. My bread and butter comes from larger firms but I do have a big soft spot for small business and sole traders (after all, I am one!) so I would love the opportunity to help you. And please do spread the word.

Please note — numbers are limited.


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A tricky headline burns your chances

This bus stop ad is a great example of a headline SingesHungryThirstythat is way too tricky to get your head around. Don’t agree? Try saying it out loud. See?

For starters, ‘singes’ is a hard word to quickly read and understand, especially when you’re moving at 60km/hr. Singes is very close to the word ‘sings’. To make it even harder for the reader, it’s not a word you’d use frequently. Especially not in a sentence like this.

Writing a headline is hard work and the very best headlines are beautifully simple. The copywriter should be doing the hard work so that they don’t leave the hard work for the consumer. Because if you don’t get your message across fast, your ad simply won’t work as well as it could, you won’t sell as many products and you won’t make as much money as you could. A great reason to make sure your headline sings :)


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