This advertising message sparked the backlash from other milk producers and surprisingly, from Vietnam Milk Associations as well. They argued that when TH milk claimed themselves clean, it makes customers think that other milks are not clean.
This is a childish and ignorant accusation, indeed.
Evidently, there is no clue of violation in advertising violation for this ads. Ethically, this ads has not intention to speak the ill of their competitors.
However, these issues are not of main interest of marketers. They surely are more keen on how this TH milk’s advertising campaign had become very successful.
What TH milk is executing is called the preemptive advertising strategy. Accordingly, they claim a generic feature of milk product – cleanness. Obviously, every milk producer is required and is capable of meeting this criteria. The point is none of them is aware of declaring it to the mass media.
TH is the FIRST to wisely did it and they are spot-on.
This kind of message strategy is normal in the marketing. The American’s well-known coffee brand has its slogan “Folger: mountain grown coffee”. No novelty at all. All kind of coffee trees grow in mountain; VarpoNet – an IT development brand has its claim “providing wireless access to the web”. Certainly, this is an basic function that anIT companies can do.
So what benefits are? of course, there are a number of desirable benefits that jointly make a pioneer like TH milk brand different.
Cleanness is a generic feature of milk brands. However, from now on, it has potentially become TH’s own attribute in customer mind no matter this brand is totally a newbie in the milk market.
It does merit TH a valuable association (leanness) when customer think of this brand. This is very deserving in accordance with one of the law in branding – it is better to be the fist in the customer mind than to be the fist in the market (The 22 immutable laws of marketing , Al Ries & Jack Trout).
Last but not least, TH milk brand happened to be under communication spotlight thanks to their competitors’ reaction on mass media. It seems that this incidence is very likely to occurs in Vietnam where marketing is still in the infancy.
If you are a marketer, you are supposed to look around to find out if any of your brand’s attributes can be used for a preemptive claim. If you have a head-age in differentiating your brand, it is a great opportunity to be stand-out by applying this simple strategy.
Nguyen Duc Son
Brand Strategy Director – Richard Moore Associates