Archive: Apr 2015

Any PR is good PR, or is it?

Last Sunday at exactly 8 A.M., women across America descended upon Target’s Lilly Pulitzer racks like a pride of hungry lions on an injured gazelle. Running, pushing and shoving to grab anything with a Lilly Pulitzer tag, some even crawled on the floor, scavenging for colorful shift dresses and palazzo pants that had fallen in the scuffle. Within minutes, eager shoppers devoured the entire 250-piece limited-edition collection, leaving not even a trace of its existence in the store. If you didn’t know any better, you’d think it was Black Friday or even The Hunger Games.

Unfortunately for most, the odds were not ever in their favor. Some greedy shoppers tossed every item from the Lilly racks in their carts to resell on eBay and reap a profit. Many who waited in line for hours or arrived too late left Target empty-handed and exasperated. Disgruntled shoppers took to Twitter and Facebook to express their displeasure. Lilly Pulitzer quickly became the top trending topic on Twitter, Facebook and elsewhere, remaining there for days after the launch.

If you didn’t know what Lilly Pulitzer was before, chances are you do now, which begs the question…

Is any PR good PR?

Definitely not. Let’s take a look at some PR blunders of decades past:

In the early 2000s, Phillip Morris released a study in the Czech Republic, claiming smoking deaths have a “positive effect” on the economy (read: saving the government money like federal medical costs because of smokers’ early deaths). Needless to say, they received a huge backlash from the public for the insensitive claims.

Let’s not forget the infamous “nipplegate” of Super Bowl XXXVIII. Do you even remember who won that year? It certainly wasn’t Janet Jackson… While Timberlake escaped the “wardrobe malfunction” unscathed, Jackson’s subsequent albums were blacklisted from radio and music channels. Ouch!

The financial collapse of 2008 was the biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression, leaving the Fed to bailout certain financial institutions. What did AIG do after receiving a massive government bailout to the tune of $85 billion dollars? They threw a lavish half a million dollar corporate retreat. Can you say misappropriation of tax-payers dollars? Uncle Sam was not happy.

Moral of the story… Not all PR is good PR. But not all PR is bad PR either, which brings us back to Target and Lilly Pulitzer, who have been in the spotlight since the Lilly Pulitzer for Target launch.

How will this PR impact Lilly Pulitzer?

Hate all you want, but Lilly Pulitzer nailed it. Sure, many were angry and “literally could not even” handle the fact that the collection sold out and would not be replenished. But isn’t that the allure of Lilly Pulitzer – the idea of exclusivity?

After the collaboration was announced in January, many devout Lilly fans were appalled, claiming a partnership with a low-end store like Target would devalue the brand; however, the limited supply of the Lilly line at Target prevented that. While a number of consumers will be sporting Lilly for Target, the majority were shut out, bolstering the brand’s exclusive reputation even within its low-end collaboration.

It’s a win-win situation for Target and Lilly Pulitzer. They built immense hype leading up to the event, and the launch sparked endless streams of chatter about both brands when people realized they wouldn’t be getting their hands on the highly anticipated collection. Not to mention the collaboration was great for profit — selling out of the entire collection in mere hours brought in some serious dough. The only losers in this scenario are the empty-handed customers.

Who was the big winner in all of this?

Lilly Pulitzer, hands down. Lilly Pulitzer’s brand recognition is off the charts. Media outlets and consumers alike have been talking about Lilly Pulitzer all week, and what better time to launch your new summer collection than at the height of all the chatter about your brand? Now that’s target marketing at it’s best (no pun intended.) Slow clap for the Lilly Pulitzer marketing team.

AD Vice

Spring 2015 Newsletter

It’s been an exciting spring at The King Agency! Here’s the latest scoop on TKA’s new clients, new work and award-winning creative. Click each image for more information.

The Scoop

Who is Gen Z?

You’ve heard of Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials, but what about Generation Z? If you’re scratching your head, read on. Gen Z is here, and they’re rapidly developing clout in purchasing decisions.

Let’s start with the basics.

Gen Z represents a whopping 72 million people born after 1995, typically between the ages of 2 and 20. Unlike Millennials who embraced technology, Gen Zers were born in a digital world, unaware of life without the Internet. These digital natives live and breathe everything digital, spending up to 3 hours a day in front of a screen and sharing their lives on multiple social media channels.

How does Gen Z differ from Millenials?

While Millenials tend to expect success and hand-holding, Gen Z is quite the opposite; they are self-educators who make their own success. Gen Z has the drive to learn, a passion for individuality and the spirit for entrepreneurialism. They’re independent, innovative thinkers, and you won’t reach them with cookie cutter dialogue.

How do you reach Gen Z?

Gen Z is technologically savvy, and they expect to engage with brands digitally. No longer can brands exist in the digital world just to be there. Brands must be authentic and visually engaging. Brands communicating in a manner that speaks to and encourages Gen Z’s individuality will be most successful at reaching them.

Gen Z

AD Vice

Your Smart Option

The King Agency welcomes Option 1 Realty, a Century 21 Company, as its newest client.

Option 1 Realty, based in Richmond, has been providing real estate services for nearly 15 years.  Option 1 is changing the landscape of the real estate industry with its innovative approach to sales commissions and providing customers with significant savings.

The King Agency will be leading brand development, broadcast advertising, design and digital efforts for Option 1.  You can view their new approach here:

C21 Option 1 Realty

TKA News

Award-winning ads

The King Agency received 5 honors in the 36th Annual Telly Awards. The Telly Awards honors the very best film and video productions, groundbreaking online video content, and outstanding local, regional, & cable TV commercials and programs.

Over 13,000 entries are received annually from the finest ad agencies, production companies, TV stations, cable companies, interactive agencies and corporations in the world. TKA received the following honors:

•  Bronze, Metro Richmond Crime Stoppers, Q-Man
•  Bronze, Smile Frederick Orthodontics, All They’ll Notice
•  Bronze, Virginia Family Dentistry, Baxter Announces
•  Bronze, Virginia Family Dentistry, Ideal Practice
•  Bronze, Virginia Family Dentistry, Built Around You

The Silver Telly Council, the judging and oversight body of The Telly Awards, is comprised of top industry professionals that are past winners of a Silver Telly, The Telly Awards’ highest honor. Judges evaluate entries to recognize distinction in creative work, judging entries against a high standard of merit.

The King Agency also received two awards in the 2015 American Advertising Awards last month. The American Advertising Awards, formerly known as the ADDYs, is the largest advertising competition in the world. To view The King Agency’s winning work, click here.

TKA News

Earning your Trust

People have many choices when it comes to the dealership they choose when they buy a car. One West End dealer aims to make that choice easier by earning your trust.

For over 40 years, McGeorge Toyota has provided more than 100,000 satisfied customers with the best customer service and product knowledge available. Most people fear walking into a dealership, expecting intimidation tactics and deceptive selling from salesmen. You won’t find that at McGeorge Toyota.

The tagline “We earn your trust every day” embodies McGeorge’s method of ditching the traditional price-focused approach, focusing instead on creating a connection with their buyers. The King Agency created the tagline in 2012.

McGeorge engaged The King Agency to handle the creative duties for the dealership. The King Agency will focus efforts on developing and executing a new advertising campaign to evolve McGeorge Toyota’s brand messaging “We Earn Your Trust Every Day.” The campaign, which launched earlier this month, includes broadcast TV, radio, outdoor and digital efforts.

TKA Work