torstai 22. maaliskuuta 2012

Being social online – antisocial offline?

Two friends are sitting down for a coffee. Both of them are browsing on Internet with their smartphones (if they are trendy enough, they will definitely have iPhones – latest model 4S, of course). First of all, they have to update their current location on Twitter, just in case someone of their 500 followers might be nearby at that very moment so that s/he could pop up to say hello. Secondly, they have to update status on Facebook as well, something like: ”I'm having so much fun with my best friend, xo!” The most ironic part is that the other person sitting next to the one posting the status might comment something on the post immediately. While this all happens online, in silent observer's eyes the scene might seem ridiculous because those two persons are not having a face to face conversation. When did it come to this? 

Social media has changed the nature of communication dramatically. I am not saying it would be a bad thing, though, actually other way around since I belong to the group so called ”heavy-users”. Due to social media, the communication takes now place more easily when the physical barriers have disappeared. For instance, social media has helped organisations to build more valueable relationships with customers since they are able to collect essential information straight from the customers without doing costly researches. In private life Facebook and Twitter are convenient ways to keep in touch with people wide and far. Regardless, there comes a point when you have crossed the line – enough is enough. You don't have to be reachable 24/7. Sometimes it's relaxing to be offline.

A bit of exercise to social media addicts. ;)
Furthermore, there is the other extremity which refuses to use social media at all. These people are often referred to as ”old-fashioned”. And I don't say this in a bad way. In fact, they might be very outgoing offline or maybe they just want to protect their privacy. But the question is: ”Can you really afford NOT being present in social media?” Especially for companies it might a disaster if they are not proactive online. Due to the lack of social media presense the customers might change to the competitor if they have a better understanding of the customers' needs and wants.

Somewhere in between there's a group that has the best of both worlds: they know how to get in contact with people online and they won't stop mingling when the computers and smartphones are switched off and the discussion takes place face to face. Which group do you belong to?

maanantai 19. maaliskuuta 2012

Swoosh, Just Do It!

When thinking about Nike as a brand, in my opinion the whole idea, which it is built upon, is brilliant. Firstly, the name Nike has its roots in Greek mythology since Nike was goddess who personified victory (note: the message seems to be pretty clear - athletes want to be victorious and with the help of Nike's products everyone is able to reach one's goals). If you look carefully enough the wings of Nike's statue, you might recognise a familiar shape. Yep, it is the Nike's logo, also known as ”swoosh”. Believe it or not, the designer of the logo, Carolyn Davidson, charged only 35 USD for her design. Little did she know that the logo would become one of the most recognisable logos in the world!

When kept in mind that this post is a part of our course ”Management of Brands”, I will next analyse Nike's brand more in detail. Firstly, I will take a look at awarenessrecall and recognition. Secondly, I will consider Nike's brand image and its dimensions – strength, favourability and uniqueness. Lastly, I will list the associations that will pop up into my mind when I think of Nike.

If you had to name only one sport brand, what would it be? For me it would undoubtedly be Nike. For someone else it might be Reebok. Someone might say Puma or Adidas with its three stripes. Few might mention brands like David but I assume that those persons belong to the minority. As a conclusion I would say Nike's recall among consumers is high. Moreover, I claim that recognition of Nike is strong as well. The mere logo (whatever colour it might be) speaks for itself and as a matter of fact it has become so independent that you don't even need the word ”Nike” anymore. Combining these two things - that's what I call high awareness of the brand. All in all, the fact is that Nike is everywhere and that's why both its recall and recognition are extreme.

Nike's brand image is valued to a great extent. It is one of the strongest sports brands according to Forbes' World's Top Sports Brands (2010). According to Brandirectory, Nike's current brand value is $18,619m ( Favourability among consumers is increasing because revenue has gone up by 10% to 20,682 million USD in 2011 compared to the year before when the revenue was 19,014 million USD (Nike Annual Report 2011). The value proposition that Nike offers for consumers can be seen unique. Nike's mission is ”To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world.” and it continues: ”*If you have a body, you are an athlete” So everyone can be an athlete if one just decides to become one. In consumers' minds wearing Nike sportswear associates with one's ability to reach the goals one has set with the help of Nike.

Design: I love the design of Nike's sportswear and especially the bright colours always give me some extra energy to go beyond my limits.
Just Do It: You cannot actually give up when it says in your top ”Just Do It”! That slogan is like a personal trainer who will make you reach your goals with ”fake it until you make it” -attitude.

Quality: I have owned sportswear from all of the well-known brands like Adidas, Puma, Reebok and David but none of them beats Nike in quality. You can use and wash the clothes over and over again and they are still like brandnew

Champion: The brand of winners, achievers, people who don't lack of self-confidence and determination. That's is exactly what I want to be. When training I push myself to the limit and each time I try to win myself, improve my strength and durability in order to achieve my ultimate goal – to live a healthier and happier life.

What are You making yourself?

maanantai 12. maaliskuuta 2012

Price marks, trust marks and love marks

This post is about Management of Brands course and the content challenge nr 1:

Price marks:
In the case of price marks, market is really competitive and products are close substitutes. For me, water is a price mark. In Finland the tapwater actually tastes delicious compared to Australian. After finding out that the filter is broken, I decided to go to look for spring waters. Because I believe that there aren't huge differences between companies, I just bought the cheapest one I could find and that happened to be this Marble Hill -spring water (correct me if I'm wrong). They have a nice story, though but they are not going to fool me! 

Trust marks:
Products (why not services as well) I trust to be the same from day to day. Nice to have some Finnish candies in Australia – from a Swedish furniture store, called tittididii.. Ikea! I think both of them could be counted as trust marks. The candies do taste the same than they did back at home and Ikea was full of furniture that I've seen countless times before. I reckon everyone knows what Ikea looks like so I don't need to upload the photo of that massive building here.
Love marks:
This is a tough one. Apple would have been an obvious choice, but I only own iPod so I cannot say I'm a huge fan. I love taking photos – and yes, both of my cameras are the same brand – Canon! That is a love mark for me, because I never even consider any other brand. ”Once you're in love, you're in love for good”, or..? At least for now!

 What about you and your price, trust and love marks?

tiistai 6. maaliskuuta 2012

Compliments – why don't we say them out loud more often?


I got inspired by a blog and decided to make a free compliments poster myself.
By saying something nice to each other every once in a while definitely puts a smile on people's face. And the best thing is that it does not cost anything. Moreover, you will feel pretty warm inside as well! This is the compliment I got yesterday: ”You are wearing a nice dress today.” Hearing that compliment really made my day! Now I challenge you to think how you could cheer up someone's day today and make the difference. It is the little things that matter.

maanantai 5. maaliskuuta 2012

Who am I?

I haven't really figured out what my ultimate goal in life is. I am convinced, though, that if I keep on searching, eventually I will find my place in this world. I believe in constant growing and personal development. We should not be afraid of changes but instead see them as opportunities. We might be satisfied with the situation as it is now but we will never know what we might achieve if we are not willing to take the risk.

There are plenty of things I love and which in my opinion make the life worth living, such as friends, sunset, chocolate, music, singing, deep conversations, night inspirations, Paulo Coelho's books, delicious food, wines, travelling, Les Mills classes, photographing, smiling people, dreaming, the smell of grass after rain, the sound of waterfall and waves, romantic comedies, optimizing, slow movement, colourful nail polish.. The list could go on and on.

I am the silent observer. I might seem to be a shy person because I think carefully my words before I talk. I have an attitude that nothing is a problem if I don't consider it to be one so instead of complaining about the problems I try to solve them. I think that a comprehensive well-being is essential for everyone of us – we must be able to take care of ourselves and after that we can take care of others. We should be able to find the balance between our personal life and work and do the things that create value for us. Most importantly we should listen to the voice inside us and reach for our dreams, as scary as it may seem. After all, we are only living once. “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” -Paulo Coelho