MK 354 Spring 2010

February 21, 2010

Filed under: blog #4 — Tags: , , — pmitch1 @ 9:44 pm

Deciding what brand of battery to buy is probably one of the most ambivalent and indifferent purchases of your entire life. Nobody proudly declares himself an Energizer enthusiast or a Duracell fanboy; purchasing batteries is a necessary evil. Plus, there is almost no easy way to tangibly assess how a well a battery is performing. Therefore, the two major battery manufacturers, Energizer and Duracell, have almost no reliable, concrete evidence that one lasts longer or performs better than another. I’m sure one side has provided some cooked statistic citing an “objective” study where one is definitively superior to the other, but the other side could simply respond with a study of their own that proves the opposite.

So with the concept of concreteness out the window, Energizer turned to an annoying pink rabbit to move product. This may have worked if their target audiences were toddlers and illiterate troglodytes, but adults are the ones buy batteries. The average adult is much more persuaded by a credible source rather than some unstoppable stuffed animal beating a drum. Duracell wisely decided to tap into the consumer’s trust of credibility to give their brand the edge.

In these ads, Duracell utilizes the idea of the “Sinatra Test” to establish credibility as the most effective and reliable on the market. According to Dan and Chip Heath’s book, “Made to Stick”, this concept alludes to the famous Frank Sinatra song ”New York, New York” in which the singer declares, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere.” The authors profess, ”An example passes the Sinatra Test when one example alone is enough to establish credibility in a given domain. “ (p.151).

"I didn't write my own songs."

As the commercials shows, many credible companies who protect human life rely on Duracell batteries. This is a ringing endorsement because when put in a life or death situation, these people trust Duracell over any other brand. Duracell is hoping that the viewer of the commercial will see that their battery is being used in these extreme conditions and then recognize Duracell as the premier battery . If you can use their batteries in life-saving equipment, they’ll certainly work fine to power your remote.

Of course if Duracell actually believed that any singular endorsement for their batteries would solidify and expand their market share, they wouldn’t have to run multiple spots, each with different endorsements…

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