Above is the press advertising for the launch of the new Blue Chip instant calmers for horses.
As mentioned in the post about the development of the calmers, we identified that our job was not to launch the concept of an instant calmer (as there are already many on the market), our job was to differentiate the Blue Chip calmers from the competition. We did this by focussing on the natural flavourings of the calmers.
When it came to the advertising we were faced with the challenge that the magazines that we were advertising in already carried quite a few ads for the other instant calmers available. All the competitor ads basically say the same thing… ‘our calmer is the best/ works the best’. As everyone knows that Blue Chip only makes high quality products, there was nothing to be gained by this.
What we wanted to do is get people who already buy competitor products to consider trying the Blue Chip ones instead. To do this we needed an ad that grabbed the reader’s attention and the tool we used was humour. We used the line “Calm down dear, it’s just a new calmer” – ‘borrowed’ from the well-known Michael Winner/ esure ads. This line was enough to grab the reader’s attention. We had packshots that clearly showed the point of differentiation – the flavours and a bit of copy at the bottom explaining about the calmers.
The copy at the bottom ends with the sentence “Chose from carrot or apple flavour, which would your horse prefer?”. This sentence does 2 things. 1) It reinforces the emotional side that this product is something that your horse will like (see product development article for the importance of emotion) and 2) It makes you subconsciously think that your horse will definitely like one of them. The choice then becomes ‘should I buy the apple or the carrot’ instead of ‘should I buy the Blue Chip one or the competition.
The short article below is taken from the trade magazine Equestrian Trade News. As you can see both the product and the advertising has been a great success. So successful that Blue Chip had to do an early second production run as the 1st batch sold far quicker than anticipated.