We’ve all read it; The Long & Short of It by Les Binet and Peter Field. (Oh, and if you haven’t, you should.) Binet and Field explain that to grow a brand is balancing long term brand building with short term sales uplift. Short term effects are vital for immediate success, but long term effects drive growth and profit too, and never more than now as per our blog on Mark Ritson’s ‘Marketing Through a Recession’.
It’s so easy in a direct response world to measure only the short term effects without thinking ahead to the longer term brand impact. We see it all the time, in particular with brands heavily discounting their products or services to drive short term response, even if it could impact longer-term brand loyalty.
Binet and Field suggested in their original work, that the division of marketing spend between short-term and longer-term activity was 60:40, in favour of brand building. But their more subsequent report, Effectiveness in Context, explains a variety of marketing spend splits depending on your brand and category, as well as the maturity of your brand. And this is already something we see brands more being more affable to. In particular CFO’s and FD’s!
For too long, brand building has been thought of as a ‘fluffy’ notion. In fact, what Binet and Field rightly point out is that brand building is about long-term growth and sales…which immediately gets the attention of CFO’s!
Here at Join the Dots we work with charities and brands to help grow short term effects, but always with an eye on the future. We want to work with, and help form brands that will stand the test of time but thinking beyond the next campaign and what will drive short term sales. We are always looking to recruit donors and customers that will stick by your brand, offering greater LTV than those through we’ve bought through the door for a quick sale.
Is there a right and a wrong?
Do we need both short and long term thinking when planning campaigns?