It’s the brand! No, it’s the message!

Old Spice has been getting a TON of publicity lately thanks to the marketing campaign with the “Old Spice Guy.”  By now, you know all about the recent publicity the company has had with its YouTube channel.  It’s been a huge success in social media circles and in stores.

According to Nielsen, sales of Old Spice over the past month are up 107%. Products that were lagging also saw a spike after they appeared in the Old Spice Guy commercials.  The marketing folks should be really patting themselves on the back.  They’ve created great buzz for the Old Spice brand.  But is Old Spice’s success because of the brand or the message?

I started thinking about this the other day when I was doing some research for this blog.  To me, it’s the message. I know you are probably saying, “Well, duh? Of course it’s the message!” Just remember though… you could have a great message, but the product is horrible.

What do you REALLY know about Old Spice? I never really seem to remember people thinking very highly of the after shave.  Of course the campaign is really about body wash, but I digress.

On full disclosure, though, I have never tried it or owned a bottle. But, people use to say that only your grandfather wears Old Spice. I clearly remember friends laughing when you mentioned that you were going to buy Old Spice.

I’m not naive to think that just because I’m not an Old Spice fan that everyone feels the same.  Prior to this recent spike in sales, however, I don’t recall Old Spice being something everyone raved about.  Are you using Old Spice? Why? Do you really think it works better than soap?

To me, the message has done a wonderful job of making Old Spice out to be the “hip” product.  This ad campaign makes Old Spice a must-have product.  To me, it’s not the brand… it really is the message.

Comments, as always, are encouraged. Have at it!


About JasMollica

"It's never too late to have a life and it's never too late to change one." That's something I tell students, friends, and family all the time. After living and working in New York City, I took my own advice in 2004, switched my career from the television/radio industry and got into public relations. Now, I spend my days as a PR/social media marketing consultant and get inspired daily. It's been a good ride, so far. But the car has plenty of gas left. I hope you'll join along in this guy's journey!

Posted on July 29, 2010, in Hot Topic, Media, Public Relations, Social Media, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Ivette Marques

    Great post. I agree with you that the message is really the star here and not so much the brand. However, the brand is seeing some good things happening to it thank to the message.

    PS – My little brother (by little I mean he’s taller than me and 21) has used Old Spice body wash forever and it smells really good!

  2. It would crack me up to see a similar resurgence for “Hai Karate,” which I put in the same category as “stuff you would buy only for older relatives which idiosyncratic fragrance preferences. I haven’t seen Old Spice Guy but I imagine there are some sort of fun options with “Hai Karate”! But I agree with your general premise … a shoddy or poorly performing product will, in the long run, negate any cool/fun messages that may have been promulgated on its behalf.

  3. I think Old Spice has completely changed its image due to its message. You’re right Jason, Old Spice used to be viewed as Old Man Cologne. That’s not the view anymore, though it has expanded into deodorants, body wash, and other products rather than just aftershave. To completely transform a brand is a huge undertaking, and you have to applaud Old Spice for its new perception as young, hip, and funny.

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