Sunday, 7 March 2010

You know what was awesome? The Recession

The recession was a glorious time. Businesses loved us! They were good friends who would always tell us how much they felt our pain and cut prices to help us.

Supermarkets for instance. They cared about the environment and they cared about our difficult financial situations. They said NO to But One Get One Free offers, as they encouraged waste and over spending. In their place were simple money off offers like half price McCoys crisps - because supermarkets cared.

Then the recession (apparently) ended. Suddenly supermarkets weren't under pressure to care, so they didn't care. And so McCoys became 3 for £3. In fact, everything in Sainsbury's became 3 for £3. They thought we wouldn't notice, because all is rosy with the economy again. Well I noticed Sainsbury's. I noticed!

To me, the way the supermarkets have acted highlights the worst of brand behaviour. A good brand should have a core set of beliefs that it then applies to each situation to form a point of view. You should be able to look at a brand and be able to guess how it feels about certain subjects. That's how you create brands that people care about and that they can believe in.

What's happened here is that the supermarkets have seen an opportunity, made a big fuss about their 'beliefs' and their 'values', then abandoned them as soon as they feel it's not necessary.

To many it may be 3 loaves of bread for £3, but for me it's Jamie Oliver teaching kids how to order a Big Mac.