5 Branding Things (that you should be doing on radio now) According To Ryan Reynolds*

Your brand can be amplified through your marketing approach and you can watch your sales grow, your brand message spread, and your existing customers come back for more, all without breaking your advertising and marketing budget. If you plan right.

Today we cover 5 things branding your business can do and compare it to what Ryan Reynolds is doing for his brands... it's an interesting journey. (*Note: we didn't actually contact Ryan Reynolds about this blog post. Instead it is based on numerous interviews he had given about his marketing business MAXIMUM EFFORT to magazines and other news sources, we have given those details where applicable - Sly and Cheeky I know!)

AND he keeps on doing it! Keep reading to the end for the latest break-out idea from Ryan - that happened YESTERDAY!

So let's get started...

If you know who your clients are, and who they listen to... then you can target them and other prospective clients who are in the same demographic... targeting your key audience is the key factor when radio advertising your brand.

While traditional newspaper print ads and social media marketing can be very effective, they really do cease to give prospective clients an interactive experience that truly defines who you are and what you have to offer... A radio spot is different. How though?

Radio is all about putting out there a voice that allows you to speak to your listeners. Rather than just passively seeing your name and associating it with an article or a post... people who have heard your radio ad a couple of times will build a mental image of your brand based on the voice chosen, the attitude of that voice, and the actual content... the message in your ad.

While many other forms of marketing say that they involve an active audience, just like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter promotions. With a radio commercial, all it takes is a push of a button to get your message to our listeners' ears. For example, as soon as a radio station plays your branding ad, everyone listening from those passively doing so, eg: employees tuning in at their desks, people walking around stores, or working from home to commuters heading to work in the car, or with headphones on... all of them will immediately hear what you have to say.

Most people on the road who aren't going to work or school are running errands, either heading to the shops to gather essentials, or going to a specific location for a specific reason. So when listeners are already in the purchasing mindset, a message regarding sales or new products is far more likely to make an impact on them and influence them. By targeting your ads at your key audience (see point 1) through station placement and time slots targeted at active shoppers (see point 3), then you have the power to promote your business to those who are ready to spend now.... and if not now... they will remember your name into the future.

Making the most of radio advertising, despite the inherent benefits, depends largely on the ad you create and what it says about your brand identity. Careful thought and planning should go into this.

So how does this all fall in to what Ryan Reynolds does with his marketing company MAXIMUM EFFORT?

1. Know your niche market and key demographics - MINT MOBILE

Mint Mobile is not known here in Australia, it is a low cost mobile phone supplier in the USA. When talking to Fast Company Magazine in September 2020 he said “A lot of celebrities are associated with luxury brands and kind of aspirational things. Affordable wireless [mobile phones] is not something you think would pop up for anyone, let alone me—but that’s what I love about it.” he was able to reach a huge audience who up until then had phones locked to their suppliers. Mint Mobile knew that 80% of consumers know that it’s possible to purchase an unlocked phone — and that’s who new players like Mint Mobile are targeting.

This voicemail message left for Mint Mobile customers (and was also used for radio spots). It was informing them about a data deal to help them through lockdown, Ryan talks about the ennui of the pandemic, and then, the customer update turns into an impromptu confessional. The ad provoked thousands of return calls to Reynolds from Mint customers, some of which were packaged together for a further response creative by the brand's team. Ryan then did an online spot about him buying into the business...

And then he pulled out of retirement Rick Moranis, as he explains in the commercial that Mint Mobile had gone too long without an unlimited option, so he required “an actor we’ve all gone too long without” to help introduce it. He knows that users of the Mint Mobile phones are more likely than not - 90's kids, and to hit that target demographic... his choice for the commercial is perfection personified...

2. Personify your brand

Ryan says "One Secret [of being a pitchman] is not insisting on my face being seen at all times" (AdWeek Magazine 14th, September, 2020). Essentially this means that the personality of you as an owner is not the only one that should be seen or heard from - you have staff who have stories to share, as well as customers. Use their stories to tell your business branding story. They are the stars, not you.

Alternatively, you can become associated with the brand like Ryan did for the Aviator Gin and Deadpool movies, and make it ALL about YOU!

3. Radio is your best reach

Reaching out to a broad range of consumers means that Ryan's company (specifically Aviation Gin) capitalised on the 'faux feud' with buddy Hugh Jackman, which they harnessed for a joint spot for Aviation and Jackman’s Laughing Man Coffee company. Their attempt at “reconciling” racked up over 8 million views online alone: 

The point of the spot is lost on some people (besides selling their individual products) it is that those people who like Hugh, might not like Ryan and visa-versa. They have doubled their appeal to their audience and are able to reach more people about their specific products. GENIUS!

Also, Ryan's Aviation Gin spots are so prolific that it is impossible to give even a short list here. Seriously there are SOOO MANY! From buying the company to birthday celebrations (for those born on leap years, and are only now able to legally drink in the USA at 21) to just talking about product, to sponsoring bartenders who miss you during the pandemic.

The sheer number of spots shows that repetition worked in reaching their targeted consumers. and it SERIOUSLY worked for Ryan as revealed in Forbes magazine (January 7, 2021) Ryan said that "he believes in “having skin in the game.” Not only does he create the advertising, he has a financial stake in many of the companies he’s advertising. (Which, incidentally, can pay off handsomely. Aviation American Gin was sold to Diageo for $610 million within two years of Reynolds’ involvement)."

4. Connect with your customers. MATCH.COM

With 2020 being such a *&$# year - Ryan's company did this fantastic spot which ran online - everywhere, on TV (in the US) and on US radio for match dot com. You seriously couldn't escape from it if you were online, and now every-time I hear any Taylor Swift song - it's all I can think about.

Match dot com and Maximum Effort also released a cheeky follow-up, “When Satan met 2020” 

5. Radio Branding = Better Identity

Ryan believes in, what he calls "fast-vertising" and "diet-storytelling", "If we have an idea we want to execute, we don’t have to go through a tremendous bureaucratic process. It’s a question of me saying, “Let’s go.”" (AdWeek Magazine 14th, September, 2020) in the same interview he explains that "diet-storytelling. You don’t have a lot of time. You have to reel people in, and we found that acknowledging and playing with the cultural landscape is a great way to do that."

By moving fast, simplifying the story and getting the end product out to people means that you can reach people faster, stay current and keep your brand at their 'top of mind' so when they need you, they know you. And they know you enough to trust you and your message.

Talking about moving fast - Ryan jumped on board again yesterday (13-12-21) with an updated PELETON spot with BIG from the Sex And The City Reboot 'And Just Like That' - and the shocking exit of BIG! Watch the video... 

It is a very cheeky Public Service Announcement starring Mr Big actor Chris Noth, a real-life spin instructor, and is voiced by Ryan Reynolds. GOLD!

In closing... in the Fast company interview Ryan said: “...what I realized was that it can actually be creatively satisfying. And a lot of fun—not just for me, but for the audience.” 

So what should your small business do to improve it's brand?

Know who you are as a brand, what your best voice is, who you are targeting and connect with your customers - all of this will lead to a 'better branded' identity that your current and prospective customers will know, remember and trust into the future.




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