Thursday, July 1, 2010

Draft FCB Creates Institute Focused on Consumer Behavior

Consumer behavior geeks rejoice! Draftfcb recently announced the opening of the Institute of Decision Making to study the rational, emotional, and instinctual factors that motivate consumer behavior. This thrills me to no end. In fact, I wish I could print out this article (found on!

The small team, lead by Matthew Willcox, director for strategic planning for the Draftfcb operations in San Francisco, will work in tandem with marketing and psychology professors at Stanford and the Haas School of Business at UC - Berkeley. When asked about the need for this Institute, Michael Fassnacht, global chief strategic officer at Draftfcb, gives this marvelous response:

“Understanding the foundation of consumers’ behavior decisions has become more complex,” he added, as they “consume more information and make decisions faster” than before.

And the Internet enables consumers to be “in shopping and decision mode at the same time, 24/7,” Mr. Fassnacht said, which further complicates efforts to decipher their decision-making.

You know why I love seeing articles like this in the mainstream media? Honestly, it's because then I don't sound so crazy for wanting to pursue doctoral studies examining how the Internet affects the way we process information and make purchasing (and health) decisions. I'm looking forward to seeing the work that comes from this Institute.

You can read the full article here.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Now THIS Is a Kickass Campaign. "Period."

A month ago, I read a NY Times' article discussing Kotex's new advertising campaign for its new line "U by Kotex" and was immediately in love. This campaign skewers many stereotypes in the world of feminine product advertising and makes fun of the types of commercials that many companies (including Kotex) have done.

Aside from the snarky print ads and tongue-in-cheek commercials, this campaign resonates with me because it "calls a spade, a spade." The monthly situation that women deal with hasn't (in my mind) been glamorous since the 50s. In fact, in college, I wrote a paper that examined the intersection between health behavior/consumer behavior/product development and marketing, and my topic dealt with periods and birth control.

This is a great example of a company observing health behavior/attitudes and altering their product line/advertising to match that. The U by Kotex website features statistics (like the ones below) related to health attitudes in young women and definitely make a case for this bold campaign.
  • 83% of girls are embarassed to talk about their periods with their parents
  • 50% of girls wish they knew more about their period
The website also allows young women the opportunity to spoof traditional feminine care ads, ask questions, share their stories, and hear from a team of health and peer experts. Folks can also sign a “Declaration of Real Talk,” and take a vow to reject the pressure that society places on women discouraging us from speaking out about our bodies. For every person that signs, Kotex will donate $1 to Girls for a Change, a nonprofit that pairs urban girls with professional women to encourage social change.

This whole campaign is change that I can believe in. Period.