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    November 24, 2006


    Adrian Lai


    Are there any websites where I can find out about the "Double Jeopardy" effect? Sounds interesting, and I'd like to find out more.


    There is some abstracts on emerald online - search ehrenberg double jeopardy and you'll see it. the best summary i've seen is in mark earls' 'welcome to the creative age'

    Lee McEwan

    Ehrenberg's legacy is looked after by the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute at the University of New South Wales in Oz. They operate a marketing science knowledge centre for subscribing clients. Their site appears to be down at the moment but is normally here:


    Thanks for leading me down the right path guys. You learn something new everyday!

    fredrik sarnblad

    Unsurprising indeed. And I couldn’t agree more with you that it’s completely pointless trying to duplicate success by duplicating the brand leader’s modus operandi.

    But what astounds me about surveys like this is that some people (often clients) equate stated effect/influence of advertising (here 48%) with actual effect/influence based on the fundamentally flawed assumption that consumers are aware of and know how advertising influences their perceptions and behaviour. Bollocks.

    This is the same reason why the effectiveness of communications can never be established in focus groups as this methodology for "testing" ads only tap into the cognitive processes than unfold in the consumer’s conscious mind (the part of the mind we actually have access to), not the subconscious. I wrote a paper about this a while back in which I argued the point that the widespread misuse of research in marketing/advertising today is keeping brands trapped in the past.

    Rob @ Cynic

    While all that is being said is true - I don't think we can simply say brand owners are stupid when they follow market leader strategies because ...

    1. It can be - in certain cases - a perfectly valid strategy, best exemplified by the rise of Asian brands who have always used imitation [albeit in a way that enhanced the market leaders offering] to build their business from [to coin a Ricki Lake phrase] from zero to hero.

    2. Research has proved brands who try and be first to capitalise on emerging trends often end up spending more money [and less ROI]than organisations who follow more traditional routes.

    3. Why should a client believe in differentiation when the agencies they rely on, in the main, share the same rules and personality traits as everyone else in the category.

    Infact, the only time major agencies tend to develop is when one of the smaller, more innovative companies, has tried something new that has generated tons of PR [even if it did not achieve financial viability]

    Don't get me wrong, I - and the company I represent - are all about bravery and differentiation in communication ... however interms of a pure business strategies, there is a perfectly sound argument to follow the habits of the 'leader', even if it is the more boring option.

    In Australia ... the number 6 brand of headache pills became the number 2 brand by celebrating they were almost identical to the brand leader in every way. Sure it's a boring category with a lower consumer involvement in its choice, but what they did was valid - even if I thought it was crap at the time.

    And as much as I like to think I am all about 'different', when I worked with Fuji at HHCL - our channel strategy was to be exactly like KODAK [to the point of appearing wherever they were] and this grew the brand from nothing to something - albeit with the help of a brand idea that I am proud to say was truly differentiated. [It is against my religion to be like the number 1 brand in every aspect]

    David Carlson

    48% that still believes in advertising is quite a lot. Do you think we will see this figure decrease very fast in the future?

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