Friday, December 21, 2007

Monday, December 17, 2007

Award Marketing?

Now who wouldn't love to receive awards. They are a sign of performance and achievement for any company/individual. A sign declaring to the world,Yeah ! We/I did it.But what if this was the exact emotion someone wanted to play on and make a smart buck?

We recently received the Frost and Sullivan award of Service Excellence for 2007. Our entire team was over joyed on hearing the news and were jumping on their desks and patting it each other silly ,basking in that warm feeling of a job well done. But then came the catch. We were required to pay an astronimical amount to Messers Frost and Sullivan to publicly use this award!!! And they had given awards not just for Best Sales and Best Service but a multitude of different names- Best Product leadership,Best Brand Leadership,Best Channel Leadership etc etc- You get the drift.On hearing this piece of info all the joy and merrimaking stopped and we were overcome by this dirty feeling. The apt descripton of the exact emotion was given by a collegue- The feeling that comes when you realise that the beautiful woman you wooed was actually a prostitute.

This incident got me thinking about Awards given in the Industry. Someone at F&S must have had a bright spark. He said -Lets split all those industries out there - B2B or B2C .For each of these industries lets spilt them into a million sectors ,split these sectors into a billion sub specialities and award companies in a kazillion categories in each of these and end up making a tonne of dough from them when they try to use these publicly.

I don't even know if its F&S who first has this idea or just copied it from the other consultants. The big question that arises here is the validity of these awards then. Do we win next year if our performance was still the best(Very likely as we won with over 60% score) but we didn't go ahead and BUY this award??

I know this isn't a very recent phenomena and has been going on for some time now.I guess like they say,you start to think only when you faced with the situation yourself. I'd like to throw open this discussion for all those who have an opinion on this matter.

Are such awards becoming Marketing gimmicks in the hands of the Awarders??Why ask the winning companies to pay for the award which they have rightly deserved according to the Consultants??Or is the research done in a way to give out as many awards as possible?? Let me remind you of the Best B-schools category given in India by all the Business magazines which rate the college of the "Planning Poiny tailed-dude" as no:4 after the 3 IIM's.... Are there better options like - Asking each of the competing companies to a small fee for participation and wait for the fair results to declare the winner. Im sure they are already making enough on the sponsorships of the Award ceremonies. Is this Award Marketing??

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Marketing blogs list

Heres a quick list for all those who are searching for that list of excellent Marketing Blogs to read....Read your heart out ladies and gentlemen...