Saturday, May 13, 2006

Close But No, I Don't Want To Shave My Cigar

Philips, maker of many things electric, wants men to shave where no shaver has before by buying its new bodygroom shaver.

They're trying not only to revive a moribund product group (electric shavers) but to create a new category of product. A long shot for any marketer, Philips has created news-worthy if not ad-worthy a campaign. Rather than spending heavily for TV, philips has created a long-form web video. You can find it at

The video itself has become news and the source of word of mouth/word of email buzz. Thus it has received vastly more traffic than could be expected. Such great exposure seems a marketers dream - Great exposure for a low expenditure.

Its lack of taste notwithstanding, I find the commercial quite weak; a solution looking for a problem and not a convincing remedy for any of problems it hopes it can convince the viewer he ought to worry about.

If this is so, the the very buzz and exposure will stall the product before it can get started. High exposure is not what you want before you have your marketing message and programs debuged. If on the other hand, Philips wants an inexpensive way to test marketing a concept and a cheap way to see if buzz = no sale; they have pulled off a very smooth move.

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