The Power Of A Jingle

By Scott Harada
Wednesday - October 18, 2006
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Ready for a day of catering (from left): Tua Seiuli, Lydia Erice, Lorena Cuadro, Sally Agcaoili, Dominga Racho, Rosalia Aniceto, Nancy Marquez
Ready for a day of catering (from left): Tua Seiuli, Lydia
Erice, Lorena Cuadro, Sally Agcaoili, Dominga Racho,
Rosalia Aniceto, Nancy Marquez

Measuring pure marketing and advertising effectiveness has always presented a challenge to small businesses. Most of us do not operate on large marketing and advertising budgets and are not only owners, but also operators at the same time. With our attention dispersed in so many directions and with costs constantly rising, we often find ourselves faced with a double-edged sword: a large somewhat intangible investment versus the time and ability to measure the return on investment.

We’ve tried to implement polls, questionnaires and numerous other means for finding the direct link between advertisement and sales. Marketing has always tried to create “top of mind” awareness for businesses by creating brand equity; what is the value of a company. One of the most used and effective methods is by creating a jingle. I think I have always recognized the power of the jingle having sung most of the national chain jingles from McDonalds to Band-aid, but it didn’t really hit home until I attended a marketing workshop. We were broken up into groups and were asked to introduce our businesses and ourselves. When it was my turn, I was pleasantly interrupted by a couple of the group members singing my jingle: “We Cater Good Food, We Cater To You ... Marians Catering.”

It has always been my contention that unique to Hawaii is the power in the word of mouth or referral from family, friends and other relations. Although this may seem almost contradictory to the aforementioned line of reasoning, it is actually a partnership. If we use marketing to create a more general, broad-based top of mind awareness of our business, then when the personal referral is offered, there is an added foundational value created by a successful marketing campaign. Although a lot can be achieved by using one method or the other, we can achieve more control of our marketing experience by employing both simultaneously.

Using this partnership will help us minimize our perceived injury resulting from holding our double-edged sword. The irony in this metaphor is that we minimize any injury by tightening our grip on both edges of the sword, gaining control of the swords’ movement. Conversely, if we loosen our grip, we leave room for the sword to be controlled by external forces increasing our potential for risk. Once we have control of the sword, we realize that we can measure efficacy in more ways than in today’s dollars. We also realize the necessity of brand marketing when we “put ourselves out there.” You will be surprised by the feedback you get from a marketing campaign.

Of course the premise to all this discourse is valued products and services offered by a company. That being said, the promotion and growth of a business relies heavily on a few key points:

1. Get your business “out there”

Using a marketing strategy such as a good jingle may be one of the most powerful tools to create top of mind awareness. There are many ways to create increased exposure to a company. Use as many as possible.

2. Get yourself “out there” As an owner, we can add intangible value by thanking clientele in person. In addition, when we are in the population we service, we can gather and give feedback directly or indirectly.

3. Grasp “the sword” tightly Stay in control. Life is full of uncertainty, but having a firm grasp of the challenges ahead allows the leverage we need to make comfortable decisions.

Next Week: Bob Crowley, Market Partner at P.F. Chang’s China Bistro

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