I tend to spend a great deal of the day picking out tiny little wrinkles in code, or looking for different and unique ways of approaching things, so I’ve developed somewhat of a knack for observing things in a slightly different light.
One of the things that interests me is how companies approach their marketing – and one of the companies that stood out recently was Innocent. This is a drinks producer in the UK that makes pure fruit smoothies. No big deal there – there’s another carton of this stuff from the Co-op sat on my desk and loads of ’em if you go to the supermarket.
What makes Innocent stand out is its marketing approach. Everything from the product name, the logo, the cute messages on the carton and the TV & print ads shouts ‘fun’. The carton’s a good example – look around the nooks & crannies of the box (once you spot one, you wonder if there are more) and there are several tiny messages dotted around. “Stop looking at my bottom” if you turn it on its head (with the lid on – obviously!)
There’s also an email address firstname.lastname@example.org which, because I am nosey, I emailed. The response was a polite ‘thanks and all the best’ – not sure whether it was hand-written or not, but the fun and quirky emails are definitely a big part of their marketing strategy that they take seriously.
So, Innocent are a ‘fun’ company – that’s how they choose to market themselves and personally it appealled to me. Why? I’m not really sure. The advert stands out as nice, straightforward and honest, and honest values are important to a healthy consumer (is this really 100% fruit? How could we not believe them?). There’s also a slightly trendy feel about the product. It’s interesting in a world where the competitors feature images of chopped apples and mangos – how dull is that? Why not spice it up and make it more enjoyable.
It clearly works for them – their image, as well as the quality of product (which is also great), have almost guaranteed their sales success. Over 18 months the company has doubled in size, and shows no signs of abating.