Of Promise and Production: Lessons for Telstra in Saying versus Doing from Dulux and Coca-Cola

bright shiny and new: the revamped Telstra ad that broke this weekend

featured image source

much has already been said of Telstra’s re-branding effort, which manifested itself over the weekend in print and on TV.  it’s all bright, shiny and new, and doesn’t look very Telstra at all … which I guess is rather the point.

I love it.  it’s optimistic, bright, clean, modern and very disruptive.  the copy is actually genuinely really uplifting:

today is amazing. connect with almost anything and anyone from almost anywhere. got something to say? boom … the world can love it. hate it. ignore it. whatever. stop and smell the roses you purchased online from the shop you just liked. because its never been like this before. it’s life in full colour. and it’s amazing.

it’s also much more than a marketing sea-change.  as the below video points out – it’s extending into every aspect of the organisation – from the vans to the identity badges…

it’s this piece of communication that’s much more interesting from a connections perspective.  the inclusion of things like identity badges gives it just a slight sense that it’s meant as much for internal as it is external consumption; a communication to Telstra’s staff explaining what’s changed.

it’s as though we’re listening in on a private conversation between an organisation and its staff – and it feels a lot more genuine as a result … if its an accident then its a happy one.  if its deliberate then it’s smart, and the opportunity is to go a great deal further.

much of the conversation on Mumbrella’s comment thread has debated the value of a revamped brand identity when the product and service fails to match.  but as Mumbrella’s indefatigable Tim Burrowes commented in an opinion piece on the site, the product does seem to be improving.

the challenge though, starts now. as the VO towards the end of the second video above observes, “we’re doing all of this to help us show all Australians just how amazing connected life can be” … the promise of a life lived in full colour isn’t the same as demonstrating to actual people in real and simple terms, what that means.  the promise can’t remain unfulfilled; the bright, clean, modern and disruptive packaging can’t be wrapped around an empty box.

of course if Telstra are really smart, then they’ll go the step further of actually making life more colourful for Australians …  what is Telstra’s similarly colour-inspired version of this?:

it’s a subtle but key mental shift: don’t just promise something – produce it.  don’t just promise more colourful lives, use your marketing investment to help produce more colourful lives.  the reach and awareness will come for free and will be more credible because the real conversations and voices of Australians will help create it.

it’s what Dulux have done with their promise of colour and its what Coca-Cola, with the recently released content below, have done with Happiness.  you can’t help but think that the people who created this asked themselves “what would Pixar do?” … and it’s the better for it.

 

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