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Technology Consulting and Services

We work closely with you to design, build and run the infrastructure systems and services you rely on to manage and reinvent your business

The next time you use your credit or debit card, take out an insurance policy, board a plane or drive your car, chances are you are being touched by IBM Services. Our technology services run the infrastructure that powers 80% of the banking industrys daily card transactions, 61% of the automobile industrys production of passenger vehicles and nearly half of mobile connections worldwide. We are experts at managing infrastructure, while being innovators at heart. In recent years, we have built strong capabilities in hybrid cloud and are applying automation and Watson™ cognitive technologies to help our clients achieve high performance, end-to-end innovation and exceed business objectives.

No cost, no obligation, no sales pitch schedule a 30-minute conversation with an IBM Technology Consulting and Services expert to get the answers you need.

Leverage hybrid cloud and automation to run a highly efficient infrastructure that is high performing and responds to change.

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Build a user-centric environment for employees by managing the complexity, risk and cost inherent in dynamic, multi-vendor device environments.

Run your infrastructure with an IT platform that has the ability to make autonomous decisions and uses data to manage the operations that keep your environment healthy, always-on and continually optimized.



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s Jump Send

Get more sales, more reviews and increase your organic ranking with promotions and intelligent targeted email campaigns.

Supercharge your product launches, get reviews & automate customer interactions!Enhance customer experience by targeting shoppers at the right moment

Schedule automated emails to your buyers at specific times after your product has been confirmed, shipped or delivered.

Tap into a huge marketplace of ready-to-buy shoppers with promotions, great for product launches and boosting your rank.

Automate your returns procedure with targeted emails every time a refund is initiated. Reduce negative feedback and never miss a return notification again.

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Tactical promotions will increase your sales velocity and rank

Get access to over 100k active shoppers ready to purchase, with inventory protection for peace of mind.

Jump Send now supports more marketplaces!

Send automated customer emails for your Amazon Seller Central accounts in:

USA, Canada, Mexico, UK, Spain, France, Italy, and Germany.

*Promotions available in USA and UK only

Any tool that allows me to grow my business, instead of managing the repetitive minutiae, is a worthwhile investment. An added bonus is how I can also make additional sales through Jump Send using their deals platform.

Jump Send helps me to grow my business without spending hours on tedious tasks. The time I save is worth the investment alone, but whats even better is that it also has a profound impact on increasing my sales!

product promotions and powerful automated customer emails.

Join the 1000s of customers using Jump Send to successfully grow their Amazon businesses.

Check out some of the popular questions we get asked all of the time!Why Jump Send?

Jump Send has built an industry leading automated email campaign tool to email all organic buyers. This lets sellers provide an exceptional customer experience. In addition, with promotional giveaways, sellers can increase their search rank and sales velocity all in one place.

Absolutely. The founding principal of Jump Send is that everything follows Amazons policies to the letter. You can read through Amazons Prohibited Seller Activities. Amazon states:You may request feedback from a buyer, however you may not pay or offer any incentive to a buyer for either providing or removing feedback.

The main purpose of promotions is to boost your products ranking by increasing sales velocity. With more sales, it is likely you will see more reviews but email campaigns are what help your product get more reviews. Sending email follow ups to your customers using a platform like Jump Send can help increase your number of reviews by up to 8x.

Keyword Targeting is a special feature in Jump Send that gives your product an extra boost in organic ranking when running a promotion. Learn more about ithere.

We currently fully support the US and UK marketplaces with promotions and email campaigns. Jump Send email campaigns are also available for Canada, Mexico, Germany, France, Spain and Italy. More marketplaces are coming soon, we will notify all members when they are available.

This is done inside of Seller Central and is very important to do correctly. We put together a video to show the exact stepshere.

This depends heavily on your products niche and the discount amount you set. The higher your discount, the more requests and purchases you are likely to receive. If your product is in a very specific niche and your discount percentage is low, it is likely you will see a significantly lower request/redemption rate.

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Being anecommercebusiness owner requires an adaptable mindset and a can-do attitude. Especially when Amazon change the rulebook. Download this E-book to learn how to launch a product without incentivised reviews.

Elements of Marketing Strategy

How we change what others think, feel, believe and do

DisciplinesMarketingStrategy Elements of Marketing Strategy

What is strategy? What does it mean for marketing? Read on…

Strategy is the first level of planning for an organization, making the big decisions that shape the lower-level detail. It takes account of resources available and makes broad decisions about how these are to be allocated.

Medium-term strategy takes account of the longer-term strategic intent of the firm, including its vision, mission and values.

Strategic planning is the process of identifying and formalizing strategy, including writing the strategic plan.

Strategic planning usually looks at least a year ahead and possibly up to ten years or more. How far you can practically plan for depends on the rate and depth of change.

Marketing strategy both influences and is influenced by overall organizational strategies. It has a primary customer focus in selecting who should be customers and then guiding what and how to sell to them.

The marketing strategic plan is best written in parallel with the business strategic plan so each influences the other. Sometimes the reality is that the marketing plan follows the business plan (though this can cause many problems).

There are many elements of marketing and, if a marketing-led view of the firm is taken, they touch all aspects of the company.

Although these elements are discussed separately below, they are all interlinked and can have bi-directional influence on one another.

The first big decision is who should be our customers and who should not. In other words, what customersegmentswill be addressed.

This is based first on the overall strategic intent of the firm, for example to be a high-end exclusive and low-volume provider, or to compete in mass markets where price is critical.

The decision is also based on research that indicates the profitability of different customers groups and how well the company is able to compete in each segment.

Thebrandis the overall intended message of the company, its products and services. It describes what customers and others should think and feel whenever they encounter the company or its products and services.

Brand is influenced by and influences the strategic intent of the firm and helps focus all other communications, products and interactions.

Brand is fragile in that it is what customers think and feel rather than what the company communicates. This makes shaping decisions about brand critical.

An important marketing decision is the nature of competition, for example whether to compete on quality, price, service, etc.

Decisions here will be affected by brand and will shape further activity such as the approach towards promotion, the use of advertising, the response to competitive action, and so on.

Having understood and selected customers, marketing strategy should have a significant influence on the products created.

This not only includes the overall functionality but also the focus on quality, features, price points and so on, in order to produce products that align with the brand and complete effectively in the marketplace.

While the exact price may not decided in strategic planning, the price ranges should be understood particularly in terms of what the target customers are willing and able to pay, and also what price breaks are important to be able to compete in the markets being addressed.

Promotional strategy includes decisions about what approaches to promotion will be used, for example TV advertising, direct marketing and so on.

Promotion can be extremely expensive, so a key part of the strategic decision here is in the amount of budget that is being allocated.

Related to brand and promotion, the way that communications with customers and other stakeholders (such as the media) needs to be decided.

This includes broadcast information about products, one-to-one and things in between. It also includes how service conversations will be conducted, for example using web interfaces or direct phone conversation.

A big decision that can be applied within any of the above is the make or buy choice of whether to do things in-house, bring in external experts or pass on the work to third party suppliers.

Two key factors in the outsourcing decisions are first the ability of the company to do the work in comparison with suppliers, and secondly the costs of doing this.

The impact on brand should be a key consideration also. Many companies who outsource such as service calls have suffered huge brand damage from suppliers who do not deliver brand values.

Brand managementUnderstanding Markets

*Body language*Change techniques*Closing techniques*Conversation*Confidence tricks*Conversion*Creative techniques*General techniques*Happiness*Hypnotism*Interrogation*Language*Listening*Negotiation tactics*Objection handling*Propaganda*Problem-solving*Public speaking*Questioning*Using repetition*Resisting persuasion*Self-development*Sequential requests*Storytelling*Stress Management*Tipping*Using humor*Willpower

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the process we use to reflect on assess and judge the assumption underlying our own and others ideas and efforts.

The Six Types of Socratic Questions

Critical Thinking Habits of the Mind

Examples of Critical Thinking Questions

the process we use to develop ideas that are unique, usefulm and worthy of further elaboration

Ways to enhance your creative abilities

First steps in open ended problem solving

5 Lead Generation Strategies to Boost Your Bnd

When was the last time you evaluated your inbound marketing strategies? When was the last time you implemented a new promotional strategy within your brand?

AtNew Breedwe like to think there is always room for improvement. Maybe you have a strong, conversation driven Facebook audience. How about starting a Twitter account? Maybe your e-newsletter mailing list has doubled over the past year? How about sending out a call-to-action and drawing some of your readers back to your website?

Dont let your innovative marketing techniques from last month or even last year go stale! Its time to give your promotional strategies a face-lift! Here are some fresh ideas to get you started.

One of themost obvious advantagestousing social mediais that theyretypically free (unless you choose to invest a small portion of your budget towards promoting your ads) and most take less than an hour to get set up. These things considered theres no excuse to not give them a try and see what works. Set up a time frame, 3 months for example, for a trial period on a new network. Every company is different and certain social media networks are more suited for you depending on your target audience. Make sure to track the success of each. Increase your presence on networks that are working and discontinue use of ones that arent.

Social media is easy, but theres still a right way to use it and a wrong way. Do your research and dont fall victim to commonly mademistakes. For example, do you know how to tweet something? You may think you do, but just in case read over a list ofTwitter termsand make sure you truly know how to use a hashtag. Review the type of language used on each network and make sure to share relevant content that your target market is interested in. As a general rule, 90% of the content you post should be about sharing knowledge and educating. The other 10% should be about your product. Once you understand the logistics of these networks you can be sure you are utilizing them to their fullest potential.

Start by asking what your target audience would want. Take into consideration size (does it easily fit in your bag?) and quality (will your logo wash off after one use?). Make sure it is purposeful and useful. No one needs extra clutter so get some feedback before you place an order. If 3 out of 5 people surveyed say they would toss it dont waste your time and your companys money. Theres no question that swag can be a great promotional strategy, but its only going to generate conversation if it avoids the trash. Remember, these items are custom to your brand so always leave enough time for the order to be created and request a proof. Its better to spend a little extra attention and catch a mistake on the proof than not realizing it until after a large order has been received.

Understand the point of ordering this swag and make sure that the point is met once you start passing it out. Find creative ways to test and see if the ROI was met. Maybe the goal was to increase your mailing list. How about requesting a business card or email address before you give someone your new swag? Maybe you want to encourage more followers on a social media network or increase attendees at a promotional event you are hosting. How about offering the swag as incentive for new likes, shares or giving them away at your event?

Business cards are a creative way to incorporate swag without giving people more than they want. A windshield replacement shop with a business card that doubles as a pocket sized ice scraper or a graphic design firm that includes a ruler along the bottom of their card gives someone another reason to hang onto your contact info (other than keeping in touch). Dont let those age-old logo printed stress balls deter you from finding a creative way to use swag as an effective promotional strategy.

So youve created an e-book or you are offering awebinarthat might appeal to two different types of people within your target audience. Why not create two different landing pages that offer the same content but tailor the language so itll best relate to each group. The goal of your landing page is to create conversation and targeted landing pages always have a higher click-through rate, which means more leads and better ROI. Make sure you have a clear idea of who these target audiences are and what they are looking for. What words are they searching? Why do they want this information? Once you know this you can adjust the copy so that your landing page comes up in a Google search, for example, or once on the landing page the reader is compelled to download your offer or sign up for your event.

Dont forget these key aspects tooptimizing a landing page:

There are lots of excuses to get together with potential leads and like-minded businesses in your area. Networking, marketing and knowing the competition are a few obvious ones.You can also take advantage of this face-to-face meeting to pass out swag, personalize your brand and explore potential new markets. This is also a great lead generation strategy because it gets your name out in the local community.

Consider different types of events that might appeal to your target market. Maybe its a seminar thats purpose is to educate your audience on a particular topic. Maybe you want to do something less structured, like a social mixer. Encourage people to attend by marketing the networking potential and offering an incentive, like snacks or prizes. Even though you are the host, dont miss out on the opportunity to get to know your local competition and build relationships within the community.

Save money by utilizing social media to promote these events. Many of these networks also have an RSVP function that can help you gage what to expect as far as attendance. You can also utilize social media to brainstorm ideas for events and get a feel for what your target market would be interested in. A Facebook post asking readers what topics they want to know more about can generate conversation and give you specific feedback. If you already have an idea throw it out there. A post reading, Like this if you would be interested in attending a marketing mixer can give you an idea of whom and how many people would come.

You probably have a wealth of knowledge about a particular subject. Maybe you have been blogging about it every day for months, sending out newsletters weekly and actively posting on social media networks. Well now its time to compile all this information into one downloadable book, an e-book. If this seems like a lot of work let me remind you that you have already created this content. All you are doing is gathering it and repurposing it into an e-book, which not only makes your site appear more credible but it also makes your content more accessible to your readers. With an e-book, readers can learn all about creating a logo, for example, in one spot instead of searching through several blog posts.

UseCTAs embedded in targeted emails at the end of relevant blog posts, or share on social media to increase the traffic to the landing pages made specifically to download this offer. If you are targeting the right audience and creating dynamic content your click through rates will increase as well as shares, followers, likes and potential leads. Not only can this increase your ROI but all this activity will make your website more popular to search engines.

The software-as-a-service (SaaS) industry is flooded with metrics to guide organizations throughout their growth. On one hand, this can make it easier to set achievable…

This digital age has given buyers limitless information, endless choices and, overall, more power in making their purchasing decisions. All of this means more time,…

First and foremost, demand generation encompasses you guessed it! generating demand for your product or service. Secondly, demand generation refers to the…

Sierra Calabresi is a former New Breeder

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The importance of an effectivmarketing strategy

For all firms, whether a modest start up or a multinational giant, an effective marketing strategy can serve as a crucial road map for the entire business. By developing and establishing a coherent and well considered marketing strategy, organisations can promote their business, court the right types of client and allocate their resources correctly, all while safeguarding the reputation of the firm.

As such, effective marketing strategies are comprised of numerous facets that companies must consider at all times. Shareholder value, reputational risk and the impact of digital technology are three of the most important considerations companies must take into account while attempting to market their services to the right audience.

Undoubtedly, a comprehensive and effective marketing strategy is something businesses must employ irrespective of their size. Consumers expectations must be taken into consideration, and a detailed analysis of a companys operations will allow firms to view their business from a client or customers perspective.

The creation of an effective marketing strategy is often the task of a firms senior management team. By handing down a comprehensive marketing strategy from the c-suite, companies will help to create a more focused, business-wide approach to marketing. It is crucial, however, that the strategy is multi-faceted, realistic and implemented consistently over time. An effective marketing strategy must also serve to bridge any gaps which may exist between the boardroom and the marketers responsible for disseminating the company message. Marketing strategies often require company-wide discipline and governance to ensure they are being implemented effectively and efficiently.

One of the most important aspects of any marketing strategy relates to identifying growth opportunities by utilising SWOT analysis. Once a company has identified the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of any marketing scheme, it becomes simpler to address those opportunities and consider what course of action should be taken to mitigate any threats. It is equally important that boards remain engaged in the process of delivering their chosen strategy over a prolonged period of time. Senior management must ensure they stay informed and remain open to new ideas to further the companys brand.

The overarching focus of the firms marketing strategy should be based on the concept of developing and growing awareness of the companys brand, and on developing trust and confidence in that brand. A companys brand is its most important asset, so attempts should be made to enhance and protect it throughout the marketing process. In order to achieve this, organisations must implement the right marketing strategies as quickly as possible.

The means by which companies now develop and implement effective marketing strategies have altered enormously in recent years. Where marketing attempts previously were limited, in the modern business climate there are untold means by which companies can successfully deliver their message. The dawning of the digital age has greatly bolstered both the scale and reach of many marketing techniques and strategies, while also posing a wide range of new questions and challenges to companies and their marketing teams.

The digital age continues to have huge impact on the effective management of marketing strategies. Companies are embracing new forms of media made available by the internet. Social media, in particular, is becoming a key avenue for many companies, yet despite the ubiquity of the technology it is very easy for companies and those acting on their behalf to misjudge their interactions in this area. For example, in February MasterCard Incorporated experienced a great deal of scrutiny and embarrassment as a result of its sponsorship of the British Music Awards. MasterCards PR agency, House PR, offered press accreditation to journalists in exchange for publishing promotional tweets on their own twitter accounts. As a result of the incident, MasterCards promotional hashtag for the event was co-opted by users of the social network who openly mocked the companys efforts. Companies must be aware that social media interactions can have an extremely damaging effect on their reputation should those interactions be misjudged.

Social media and the wider internet can have a damaging effect on a companys reputation in other ways. In 2012 there was an uproar surrounding how little corporate tax global leviathans like Google, Starbucks and Amazon, among others, were paying in the UK. Consumers turned to the internet and social media to express their anger at what they deemed to be underhand and borderline criminal activity. Irrespective of the fact that the firms had legally done no wrong, public opinion was swayed strongly against them. Incidents such as these should serve as a stark wake-up call to businesses. In April, as a result of the fallout from investigations into the levels of tax paid by multinational corporations in the UK, Starbucks announced it was relocating its European headquarters to London. The move to London echoes similar decisions taken by other multinationals over the last 12 months. Advertisers WPP plc, media group UBM plc, Aon plc, and two oil services companies, Rowan Oil and SeaDrill, have all relocated to the city. According to Starbucks, the move, which is due to be completed by the end of 2014, will result in the firm paying more tax in the UK.

The growth of the internet, particularly social media, has significantly accelerated the time it takes to disseminate information and for the public to respond. If organisations make the wrong move from a marketing perspective in the modern era, the damage that mistake can have on a companys brand is magnified considerably when viewed through the kaleidoscope of digital technology and social media. The number of influential social media networks has continued to grow in recent years. Previously niche products such as Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram have grown in popularity, providing businesses with a multitude of new options to produce engaging content and build their audiences. Any contemporary marketing strategy must incorporate social media and utilise it effectively. Social media should be embraced as a tool to effectively foster and maintain relationships. By developing relationships through effective marketing, companies can engender trust and admiration among their prospective customers. Credibility can be established, which extends beyond business transactions and helps to further develop a companys brand.

If poorly managed, the reputational fallout of marketing miscalculations can be disastrous. Providing a poor or inadequate level of service through either digital formats or traditional means can have a major impact on sales, profits and stock. As such, it is vital that companies are aware of, and strictly manage, their marketing strategies in the digital space.

Evidently, the advent of the digital age has led to numerous changes in the way in which companies approach marketing strategy. This is only likely to intensify in the coming years. Going forward, companies will increasingly improve their standing and credibility with consumers by creating valuable marketing content through a variety of channels, both traditional and digital. By engaging and embracing a variety of mediums, companies can foster a strong relationship with their demographics. This relationship will develop into a genuinely loyal following. Some of the best B2B content marketing strategies see companies engage their customers on social media, contribute articles on the business website, produce eNewsletters, case studies, videos and articles on other websites. Traditional marketing via more established channels, such as television and radio advertisements, is becoming less effective. Again, the proliferation of new technology tablets, smartphones and digital video recorders is ensuring that consumers are paying less attention to traditional advertisements. According to data from Nielsen, 84 percent of smartphone and tablet owners in the US use those devices while watching television.

Instead of relying on marketing by traditional means, many companies are discovering that it is better for the development of their brand to concentrate on inbound marketing. Companies should incorporate the production of valuable, engaging content which is designed for a specific audience into their company wide marketing strategies.

One of the most important functions of all business operations is to create shareholder value. Shareholder value should serve as a guide to the strategic, financial and organisational choices made by chief executives and their colleagues in the c-suite. Value creation is also particularly relevant as it pertains to the marketing department. Implementing an appropriate and considered marketing strategy should help all major corporations drive shareholder value. The principle behind shareholder value states that if a company builds value, the stock price will eventually follow. The most effective means by which a company can build value in its name and its brand is with an effective marketing strategy.

An organisations existing brands, customer relationships and channels of distribution are pivotal when creating shareholder value. Accordingly, developing, maintaining and exploiting those assets should be foremost in the minds of a companys marketing staff. Those assets should be subjected to regular and meticulous reviews. Companies should carrying out regular risk assessments of their marketing strategies as they would any other aspect of their business in order to help create value for shareholders. Although brand value does not appear on the balance sheet, it should be subject to the same scrutiny as other assets.

Organisations also need to tailor their marketing strategies to a specific audience. An effective marketing strategy should consider customer preferences and interests. Firms should attempt to instigate a data-capture strategy wherever possible. By capturing data from customers and clients, companies can build and develop trusting relationships which will further enhance the firms offerings. They can determine which issues and products are important to their customer base and tailor their offerings accordingly.

Increasingly in the todays global business environment, companies are competing for the attention of consumers with a diminishing attention span. It is essential that those firms utilise all the tools at their disposal to create and maintain an effective marketing strategy. That strategy should reflect and complement the wider financial goals of the organisation. Firms ought to follow a clearly defined and considered path which directly targets the firms desired consumers. It is imperative, however, that firms marketing strategies are malleable where necessary. The best marketing plans prepare firms for any unforeseeable changes in the wider business environment, as well as on a microeconomic level. It is when unexpected and potentially damaging changes occur that companies most require a strong yet flexible strategic plan. Once firms have an appropriate an effective strategy in place, they should utilise that plan to protect and enhance their brand at all times.

How Chipotles Business Model DependOn NEVER Running TV Ads

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How Chipotles Business Model Depends On NEVER Running TV Ads

Chipotle chief marketing officerMark Crumpacker gave an interesting quote to Ad Agethis week, buried at the bottom of the story: He said that the company doesnt want to start advertising in traditional media like TV because Once you get on that model, I think its very, very hard to get off.

In fact,notadvertising on TV is key to Chipotles business model. The company spends almost nothing on advertisingjust $6 million nationwide last year. (By comparison,Arbys, the smallest of the large fast-food chains, spends about $100 millionandMcDonalds, the biggest, spends more than $650 million.)

Chipotle hasreducedits above-the-line advertising costs in the last two years:

Chipotle did advertise on TV for the first time ever this year, buyinga single ad during the Grammy Awardsthat ran only once, for instance. But In its annual report, Chipotle describes why it believes advertising is bad for its business:

Our marketing has always been based on the belief that the best and most recognizable brands arent built through advertising or promotional campaigns alone, but rather through all of the ways people experience the brand.

The main method it uses for promotion is word-of-mouth publicity, the company says. Chipotle even lists advertising as a risk factor to its business, if the company were forced to do more of it for competitive reasons (see page 13):

That could require us to change our pricing, advertising or promotional strategies, which could materially and adversely affect our results of operations or the brand identity that we have tried to create.

The strategy has worked. Last year,Chipotle had sales of $2.3 billion, a 23 percent sales increase and an 11 percent same-store increase. Carol Phillips, an adjunct marketing and branding instructor at University of Notre Dame told Age that Chipotles street cred comes fromnotbeing on TV:

Millennials view the lack of TV as more authentic … Millennials are likely to dismiss a lot of claims.

Three years ago,Chipotle flirted with the idea of advertising but decided against it. The company looked at hiring 27 ad agencies before deciding it didnt like any of them. Currently, the company has no sales and marketing line in its operating costs, just a general and administration line.

The result is that a lack of advertising is no built into the companys profitability. It earned only $214 million on its revenues last year, and has had even thinner margins in previous years.

In other words, even a modest advertising budget (compared to other advertisers in the category) would render the chain unprofitable, if it happened.Advertisement

The alternative is to switch to the type of marketing that every other fast-food company uses — with these new menu items and big ad campaigns to promote them, said Mr. Crumpacker. I think once you do that, you cant go back, because those work. … Once you get on that model, I think its very, very hard to get off. I want to try to do this as long as I can.

Not everyone thinks Chipotles ad-free Nirvana will last forever.Dan Dahlen, a restaurant marketing veteran,told Age:

Chipotle will eventually get to that point, that to drive same-store sales theyll have to go to TV … As you get into the top spenders in the category, theres a correlation between share of voice and share of stomach.