A Critical Review Of Hbls Advertising Campaign Marketing Essay

5338 words (21 pages) Essay

1st Jan 1970 Marketing Reference this

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The impression behind these advertisements was to make the consumers believe that HBLs product/service is very user friendly, it is so user friendly that even someone like Mr. Bean can use it.

In the banking service industry, HBL (Habib Bank Limited) took a very bold step by coming up with a highly attention grabbing campaign for HBL’s phone and personal banking by taking Mr. Bean’s look alike to represent the ease in banking. The message that the campaign gave across was “Har aik kay liye aasan”

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The concept behind this advertisement campaign was tell everyone that the product/service of HBL are so simple, user friendly and easy to use that a person like Mr. Bean can effortlessly use them. Humor does not work for each and every kind of ad and so the lookalike character of Mr. Bean did not target the right audience for HBL’s product and services. The target market for such type of product and services are employed persons, SMEs, retired people and corporate people.

Target market

In one of the ads, Mr. Bean awkwardly operated an ATM machine in a very clumsy manner and it reflected that banking is a complicated process otherwise a character like him can easily operate it with HBL’s services. Banking sector customers are not teenagers or children who can easily be amused by such kind of characters, they are adults and corporate clients who are not easily amused by such type of advertisements.

HBL is a very conservative bank with a high profile in the international market, they should stick to the conservative means of communication in advertisements with right target audience rather than adopting revolutionary tactics of advertisement.

The target market for HBL’s services and products are the people who are either employed or even retired personnel who are opting for easy banking solutions. To open an account in a bank, one must be above eighteen years of age so this target group would have been influenced by smart marketing techniques or advertisements.

HBL’s advertisements featuring Mr. Bean was either for a very long term brand entity development or just a bad marketing approach because it were children only who were easily influenced by a personality like Mr. Bean.

Wrong Brand Ambassador

When a Celebrity like Mr. Bean (lookalike) stars into an advertisement, that means the creator of that add wants to use the charisma, popularity and relevance of that particular person to make the target audience feel that they need to have this product/service so that they can be associated to that particular celebrity. But unfortunately no professional, business man or grown-up person would like to be associated to a credit card when he pictures Mr. Bean using it. So in reality this campaign will this make the product/service a failure.

Banking is a serious Business

A very large percentage of potential banking sector customers are beyond their teen age group. Every teenager cannot be impressed or persuaded to buy or use something associated with a brand ambassador Mr. Bean. Personality traits of Mr. Bean can be used to target young children aging from 4 to 12 years. Older business men and professionals cannot be expected to watch his movies or TV programs so how can one expect to be associated with such a personality. Moreover the actual potential customers of a bank would not like to be associated with someone funny, witty, dumb or a humorous character.

Fake Mr. Bean

Copy cats are not an inspiration but rather a disgrace for the people they represent so the brand managers of HBL should have tried to use another approach.

Humor Appeal, Not very well done!

The humor element which was used in HBL’s commercials did not prove laughter amongst viewers, maybe a smile but definitely not laughter. This type of humor can work for new entrants in the market but definitely not for an established entry like HBL.

Introduction

Introduction

Global and commercial banks in Pakistan nowadays are facing a threatening situation. Government regulations are escalating from day to day. Competition is emerging from international markets to non-banking companies. The need to invest more in cutting-edge information technology is growing on the daily basis.

Consumer trust in traditional lines of business is ever shrinking. As the funding cost and interest rates are rising, trust in commercial banking is plummeting.

With all such diverse challenges rising , what strategies and contingency plans should the top management come up with at commercial level for long term plans to succeed over the next decade.

It is found out that consumers at the commercial banking mostly require trust and convenience. New strategies should be implemented now to identify what opportunities lies ahead in this ever quickly changing environment so that their banking industry may successfully emerge from this uncertain period.

Banking industry in Pakistan has a diversified environment consisting for a few large banks and some small and medium sized banks. However competition is ever growing in such a type of industry. It is more becoming a game of survival of the fittest.

The poor economic growth rate in the country and energy crisis in the country have worn out hopes for quick recovery of the economy, leaving no option for competitive banks to remain in the game.

In such a type of environment new strategies have to be implemented to further influence consumers to invest more and put their trust into the banking industry where they would invest more even with the ever changing economy and government regulations.

With such a type of environment, this project would analyze one particular bank’s advertisement strategy through content analysis and how it used it to their advantage to influence and motivate consumers.

This Project would be a critical review HBL’s advertising campaign of using the portrayal or personification of Mr. Bean’s character in advertisements regarding phone banking, personal banking, debit card use and Banker’s cheque.

This is project will review critical subjective advertisements such as telephone banking, HBL banking, the use of debit cards and banker’s checks featuring Mr. Bean look alike as the main actor. This study will include an analysis of this type of advertising marketing campaign using the content analysis model.

About the company

Habib Bank Limited was founded in 1947 and has its headquarters in Karachi, Pakistan. Nauman K. Dar operates as President and CEO of HBL.

Habib Bank Limited and its subsidiaries, provides banking and other financial services principally in Pakistan. The company offers a combination of retail, investment, corporate, and commercial banking services. It also has operations in the Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, and the Middle East. As of December 31, 2011, HBL comprised of 1,464 branches, including 22 Islamic banking branches in Pakistan, as well as 42 branches outside the Pakistan.

About Mr. Bean

Mr. Bean is a favorite personality because of his unique way of approaching everyday problems in a rather roundabout way. He’s a lovable character who everyone would like to help out of his sticky situations. Being a man of few words, his humor is universally popular.

His everyday tasks seem to get him in and out of hilarious problems. Mr. Bean is always accidentally causing chaos every way he turns. Mr. Bean means well, but can sometimes be ignorant and very inconsiderate. Mr. Bean is like a child in a man’s body.

His personality can be summarized in the following words hapless, awkward, self-conscious, childlike and disaster-prone. While much of the humor is that universal physical comedy adored by small children, NOT ADULTS!

Background to the problem

The real concern is whether the introduction of such a marketing campaign is a huge decision in the right way or not by introducing Mr. Bean’s character in banking advertisements as banking is a serious business and to portray it with a character like Mr. Bean who is considered to be lunatic and a funny character.

Whether it works for the advantage of the bank or not.

Many questions arise such as

• Does this make product / service work?

• Do we really need analysis?

Unless these issues are met, there goes one more step towards the realization of this campaign to consider whether it succeeded or not.

This project will attempt to answer these questions in particular that this marketing campaign Mr. Bean is a successful or not?

We will mainly analyze the effectiveness and relevance of this particular campaign, a critical point of view using the model of content analysis.

Theoretical framework

The important factors to examine that this advertising campaign is successful, we will examine it through the Content analysis framework is which is given below.

Steps in Content Analysis

Develop Operational Definition of Sample Universe

Specify Research Hypothesis or Questions

Specify Sampling Plan

Determine Treatment of Duplicate Ads

Obtain Advertising

Train Coders

Develop Category System

Apply Findings

Analyze and Interpret Date

Code Materials and Assess Reliability

Pretest and Revision

We would first begin with the formulation of research questions or hypothesis that needs to be identified for conducting our content analysis. After which then comes the development of data collection instruments, data collection, analysis of raw data and ends with the conclusion and application for decision making.

Specify Research Hypothesis or Questions

In the first step we would begin with the specification of the research hypothesis or questions that what needs to be learned from this content analysis. This specification is important because it focus the content analysis and influences correct decisions made at the end of each step.

Research Hypothesis and questions about Mr. Bean’s Add Campaign

Prior research suggests that the persona of Mr. Bean’s character in the HBL phone banking and debit card advertisements is not so much influential and not social than the usual banking advertisements. This research hypothesis will determine if these aspects have an impact on the consumers or not.

Research Question

Advertisements having Mr. Bean’s fake character personification does not have influence on consumers as compared with the usual banking advertisements.

Hypothesis

Ho: HBL’s advertising campaign having Mr. Bean personification have a relation with the Product/service.

Ha: HBL’s advertising campaign having Mr. Bean’s personification does not have a relation with the Product/service.

Such type of hypothesis also depends on the advertisement’s content which involves such type of questions as well.

What benefits are our competitors communicating in their advertisements?

What visual devices are being used in HBL’s advertisement as compared with their competitors?

What type of promises, appeals or selling propositions are being used?

What tone or approaches are being used?

Do different messages or selling propositions appear in our competitor’s advertisements?

Develop an operational definition of the sample universe.

This step involves defining the sample universe, in this case the population of advertising that will be examined. A well constructed operational definition would eliminate all ambiguity and clearly define which advertisements we are trying to target in which time period.

Operational definition of the sample universe

This content analysis will examine the HBL’s advertisements featuring Mr. Bean’s look like character. The sample universe consists of ads appearing in 2011 and 2012 in the electronic media.

Specify Sampling Program

The sample plan would determine how specific type of advertisements from the sample universe will be selected.

Sampling Plan

Seven commercials were selected at random from a range of HBL’s ads featuring Mr. Bean’s lookalike character in the electronic media. These advertisements were about Debit card use, phone banking, HBL’s ATM bill payment, funds transfer banking and HBL’s service online banking.

These seven ads were specifically selected because all these ads involved Mr. Bean’s personification. These ads have been broadcast in the electronic media in year 2011 and 2012.

Obtain advertising

Seven ads were selected to perform content analysis.

HBL’s Debit Card advertisement. This ad also featured the famous Pakistani cricketer Shahid Afridi. This ad was of total 45 seconds duration.

HBL’s phone banking banker’s cheque advertisement. This ad also featured the famous Pakistani model Ayyan. This ad was of total 43 seconds

HBL’s ATM advertisement. This ad involved the use of bill payment through ATM. This ad also featured some of the famous Pakistani cricketers. This ad was of total 50 seconds

HBL’s mobile banking advertisement. This ad involved the use of mobile banking for funds transfer. It also featured the famous Pakistani cricket Shahid Afridi. This ad was of total 45 seconds.

HBL’s Debit card service advertisement. This ad was of total 38 seconds.

HBL’s online banking advertisement. This ad was of total 38 seconds.

HBL’s phone banking advertisement. This ad was of total 44 seconds.

Determine treatment of duplicate Ads

Many ads appear more than once in a given time period. It may also appear several times in the same television program. Therefore to code duplicate ads in this sample wouldn’t be necessary that is treating each instance of the duplicate ad as a separate ad. We would eliminate duplicate occurrences.

This content analysis will focus on advertiser’s brand strategies so duplication would be eliminated. In this case, the emphasis is on messages and content rather than exposure. Conclusions will be drawn about the advertiser’s approach by coding multiple occurrences of the same ad.

Develop a Category System

Development of a category system which consists of two steps.

Classification of categories of interest

Specify dimensions of each category

Each category will represent some information that will be extracted during the content analysis. Great care is taken by identifying each category. The set of categories selected for these particular advertisements is comprehensive. Categories are properly labeled and have a direct relationship to the research questions and hypothesis.

Step 1: Classification of categories of interest in HBL’s advertisements

The categories selected for this particular content analysis which will reflect about the competitive advertising strategies used for the HBL’s advertisements.

Commercial format

Rhetorical style

Production technique

Setting of ad

Speaker

Voice-over

Dress

Emphasis of ad

Use of content appeals

Commercial structure

Primary product benefit

Additional secondary benefits

Type of selling proposition

Commercial tone

Type of brand identification

Musical elements

Commercial characters

Product Introduction

Commercial Approach

Step 2: Specify dimensions of each category

This step would identify the specific limitations of each category selected. The identification of these dimensions come from prior research or advertiser’s practices within the service or product category. These category dimensions are relevant to the objectives of our content analysis.

Category Dimensions

Commercial format Announcer

Lifestyle

Celebrity endorsement

Issue Dramatization

Rhetorical style Informative

Production technique Combination

Setting of ad Inside-general

Inside-home

Inside-store setting

Outside-general

Speaker Anonymous announcer

Voice-over Male

Dress Formal suit

Combination

Emphasis of ad Issues

Use of content appeals Personality characteristics

Commercial structure Front-end surprise

Middle surprise

End surprise

Unexpected setting

Primary product benefit Easy

Reliable service

Secondary benefits Fast service

One stop solution

Type of selling proposition Ease

Quick service

Commercial tone Humorous

Amusing

Comical

Type of brand identification Banking service/Product

Musical elements Soft Catchy tone

Melodious

Rhythm

Commercial characters Mr. Bean

Pakistani Cricketers

Model

Product Introduction After 20 to 30 seconds of the advertisement

Commercial Approach Emotion

Preparing a Code Book

A code book is the dictionary of content analysis. It contains definitions and more elaborated details about the categories and dimensions selected for the HBL’s commercials. Code book is important to perform content analysis because they provide reference for all coders.

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Code Book for performing content analysis of HBL’s advertising Campaign featuring Mr. Bean’s character.

Category: Commercial Format

This category deals with the format of the commercial. What it contains and what are its main elements:

Announcer: After 10 to 20 seconds of the commercial, a male announcer uses his voice narration to elaborate about the product/service benefits.

Lifestyle: The commercial uses the lifestyle of Mr. Bean’s character. It highlights the lifestyle of Mr. Bean’s character and how he is involved in serious situations including mental work but it is eased with the use of HBL product/service.

Celebrity endorsement: Some of HBL’s commercials also featured some famous Pakistani crickets and a famous Pakistan model Ayyan.

Issue Dramatization: The plot of each advertisement is based upon a storyline and what drama it creates in the commercial.

Category: Rhetorical style

This category deals with the approach of the commercial. What is its motive and what the commercial is trying to achieve.

Informative: The commercial is basically trying to educate or give information about its product/service to the viewers about how it is easier to use and what are its benefits in a humorous or comical way.

Category: Production technique

This category is about the production technique used in the commercial. The voice narration in the background along with the character’s appeal in the ad.

Combination: HBL’s commercial is a combination of both voice narration in the background explaining about the product/service along with the character acting out in the commercial.

Category: Setting of ad

This category deals with the ambiance or the surrounding in the commercials. A total number of seven commercials are selected to perform content analysis. The settings of the ambiance of these commercials are given below:

Outside-general: One of the commercials had everyday life situation setting where the character is traveling to places and using the product/service.

Inside-home: One of the commercials had a home based ambiance.

Inside-store setting: Three commercials had a store ambiance setting.

Outside-general: Two commercials had outside general ambiance setting. One in a cricket ground and one outside of a bank.

Category: Speaker

This category tells us about the speaker in the commercials.

Anonymous announcer: HBL’s commercials used a male voice narration in the background to describe about the product/service benefits and its uses.

Category: Voice-over

This category tells us about the voice over used in the commercials

Male: A male voice-over was used in all of the HBL’s commercials.

Category: Dress

This category tells us about the dressing style of the main character in the HBL’s commercials.

Formal suit: In most of the HBL’s commercials, Mr. Bean’s character was found wearing formal light grey coat with a dark brown pant except for one commercial where he was wearing a white umpire costume.

Category: Emphasis of ad

This category would tell us about the emphasis in the commercials. What is the basis of each advertisement and what conclusions are drawn from it.

Issues: Each commercial basically revolves around the character of Mr. Bean. How he behaves and gets himself into banking troubles and how it is resolved by the use of HBL’s product/service.

Category: Use of content appeals

This category would identify the appeal in the advertisement.

Personality characteristics: All HBL’s commercials portray the fake character of Mr. Bean. Mr. Bean’s character is loved and adored throughout the world by his witty and amusing habits. HBL’s commercials use the personification of Mr. Bean’s character to make it appealing for the viewers.

Category: Commercial Structure

This category refers to the use of surprise and unexpected elements in the HBL’s advertisements. Five dimensions of the HBL ads are as follows:

Front-end surprise: The first ten seconds of the commercial involves the opening of Mr. Bean’s character in a storyline. It uses the suspense element so that viewers may get eager to see what comes next.

Middle surprise: The middle portion of the commercial (11 to 20 seconds in a 40 second ad) uses the element of something happening unexpectedly in the commercial.

End surprise: The last ten seconds of the commercial presents solution to the viewers and uses the product/service or its brand name in the ending sequence with the product/service information.

Unexpected setting: The product/service is shown in an unexpected way to the viewers in a storyline so that the viewers may get amused by it.

Humorous intro: In all the HBL’s commercials, the first 10 seconds of the commercial always uses a humorous intro.

Category: Primary and Secondary product benefits

This category tells us about the primary and secondary product benefits in the commercial. Primary selling benefit receives the greatest amount of emphasis in a commercial. Secondary benefits may also be mentioned along with its primary benefits. The four dimensions used in this particular category are given below.

Easy: The commercial primary focuses on the easy service provided by the brand name.

Reliable service: The main focus of the commercial is to motivate the customers about the easy and reliable service the brand name HBL has to offer to its customers.

Fast service: The commercial also offers quick and faster service solutions to its customers.

One stop solution: The commercial also offer one stop solution to banking problems that is their product/service Debit card.

Category: Type of selling proposition

This category would tell us that what type of selling proposition does the brand HBL is trying to communicate in its advertisement.

Ease and quick service: HBL’s primary focus in its commercial is to provide quick and easy solutions to banking troubles through the use its product/service for example

HBL Debit card use

Phone Banking

ATM use

Category: Commercial tone

This category would tell us about the commercial tone in the advertisement. What type of tone does the HBL commercials follow?

All HBL commercials are humorous, amusing and comical in nature which revolves around the character of Mr. Bean who is in an amusing situation that happens because of a banking trouble.

Category: Type of brand identification

This category tells us about what type of product/service campaign it is and what are its main areas of brand identification.

Banking service/Product: HBL commercials are promoting its bank service along with its products such as Debit card use but the primary focus of the commercials is on its service industry.

Category: Musical elements

This category would tell us about the musical elements used in the HBL commercials.

Soft Catchy tone, Melodious, Rhythm: HBL commercials have soft catchy tones with melodious background music and rhythm which goes alongside well with the storyline and what is happening in the commercial.

Category: Commercial characters

This category tells us about the type of characters that are used in HBL commercials

Mr. Bean: The fake character of Mr. Bean is the main character lead in all HBL’s commercials

Pakistani Cricketers: Some of HBL’s commercials also features some famous Pakistani crickets like Shahid Afridi, Yonis khan and Umer Gul

Model: One of HBL’s commercials also featured a Top Pakistani Model Ayyan.

Category: Product Introduction

This category tells us when the product/service information in the commercial is displayed.

After 20 to 30 seconds of the advertisement: The information about the product/service of HBL is displayed after 20 to 30 seconds of the start of the commercial where a situation has happened involving Mr. Bean and the HBL product/service is the solution to the whole plot.

Category: Commercial Approach

This category tells us about the commercial approach.

Commercial Approach: In all HBL’s commercials, a humorous emotional approach appeals to feelings rather than logic. There is humor involved which can appeal to the audience or to the customers. There is also a positive approach involved where the commercial tells the customer how he or she will be better off if the product/service is used.

Code Sheet

A code sheet is very similar to a survey questionnaire. It is where individuals would evaluate the advertising and record their observations. A code sheet would be prepared following specification of categories and dimensions within a specific category.

Code sheet for the HBL’s advertising campaign featuring Mr. Bean’s character.

Commercials:

HBL’s Debit Card advertisement.

HBL’s phone banking banker’s cheque advertisement.

HBL’s ATM advertisement.

HBL’s mobile banking advertisement.

HBL’s Debit card service advertisement.

HBL’s online banking advertisement.

HBL’s phone banking advertisement.

Category: Commercial structure

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

Rate the commercial structure in HBL’s advertisement in your opinion, which was more appealing to you?

_____ Front-end surprise

­­­­­_____ Middle surprise

_____ End surprise

_____ Unexpected setting

_____ Humorous intro

Category: Primary and secondary selling benefits

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

Rate the Primary and selling benefits which in your opinion was important in the commercial

_____ Easy

_____ Reliable service

_____ Fast service

_____ One stop solution

Category: Commercial Approach

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

Rate the commercial approach which according to you was more important in all HBL’s commercials.

______ Humorous approach

______ Positive approach

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

To what extend did the commercial use a rational versus emotional approach? The commercials were:

_____ Entirely rational

_____ Mostly rational with some emotional elements

_____ Both rational and emotional, equally

_____ Mostly emotional with some rational elements

_____ Entirely emotional

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

To what extend did the commercial use a positive versus negative approach? The commercials were:

____ Entirely positive

____ Mostly positive with some negative elements

____ Both positive and negative, equally

____ Mostly negative with some positive elements

____ Entirely negative

Train coders.

After the development of code book and code sheet, coders are selected and trained. Individuals must be selected with similar background and relevance to the advertisements and commercials for which the content analysis is being conducted. Training of coders is necessary so that they may know what the researcher is trying to achieve through the content analysis model.

Once selected, coders are trained in the coding procedure. The training process begins with the samples of commercials being shown to them, explanation of category system and their dimensions, category definitions and conclusions of coding.

Pretest and revision

Every content analysis is improved with the help of pretest and revision of the research materials. Pretesting improves the category system, category definitions and coding materials. The responses or each coder are then examined and further used for evaluate category definitions and dimensions.

Code the Materials and assess reliability

The coding process is done after the pretest and revision where coders observe advertising and record their observations. Code sheets would be further evaluated through the questionnaire survey form.

Holsti’s method would not be performed in this content analysis as statisticians have criticized this approach because it overestimates reliability.

The reliability of the data collected would be further examined by using correlation statistical technique.

Analyze and Interpret Data

Descriptive statistics can be calculated for the categories that appear on the code sheet for calculating variables. The descriptive analysis of categories would be shown in the interpretation of results and findings.

Apply the findings

The goal of this content analysis was to find advertiser’s strategies in the HBL’s advertisements. The final step in this content analysis was to find improved understanding about the content. After conducting this model, we came

The impression behind these advertisements was to make the consumers believe that HBLs product/service is very user friendly, it is so user friendly that even someone like Mr. Bean can use it.

In the banking service industry, HBL (Habib Bank Limited) took a very bold step by coming up with a highly attention grabbing campaign for HBL’s phone and personal banking by taking Mr. Bean’s look alike to represent the ease in banking. The message that the campaign gave across was “Har aik kay liye aasan”

The concept behind this advertisement campaign was tell everyone that the product/service of HBL are so simple, user friendly and easy to use that a person like Mr. Bean can effortlessly use them. Humor does not work for each and every kind of ad and so the lookalike character of Mr. Bean did not target the right audience for HBL’s product and services. The target market for such type of product and services are employed persons, SMEs, retired people and corporate people.

Target market

In one of the ads, Mr. Bean awkwardly operated an ATM machine in a very clumsy manner and it reflected that banking is a complicated process otherwise a character like him can easily operate it with HBL’s services. Banking sector customers are not teenagers or children who can easily be amused by such kind of characters, they are adults and corporate clients who are not easily amused by such type of advertisements.

HBL is a very conservative bank with a high profile in the international market, they should stick to the conservative means of communication in advertisements with right target audience rather than adopting revolutionary tactics of advertisement.

The target market for HBL’s services and products are the people who are either employed or even retired personnel who are opting for easy banking solutions. To open an account in a bank, one must be above eighteen years of age so this target group would have been influenced by smart marketing techniques or advertisements.

HBL’s advertisements featuring Mr. Bean was either for a very long term brand entity development or just a bad marketing approach because it were children only who were easily influenced by a personality like Mr. Bean.

Wrong Brand Ambassador

When a Celebrity like Mr. Bean (lookalike) stars into an advertisement, that means the creator of that add wants to use the charisma, popularity and relevance of that particular person to make the target audience feel that they need to have this product/service so that they can be associated to that particular celebrity. But unfortunately no professional, business man or grown-up person would like to be associated to a credit card when he pictures Mr. Bean using it. So in reality this campaign will this make the product/service a failure.

Banking is a serious Business

A very large percentage of potential banking sector customers are beyond their teen age group. Every teenager cannot be impressed or persuaded to buy or use something associated with a brand ambassador Mr. Bean. Personality traits of Mr. Bean can be used to target young children aging from 4 to 12 years. Older business men and professionals cannot be expected to watch his movies or TV programs so how can one expect to be associated with such a personality. Moreover the actual potential customers of a bank would not like to be associated with someone funny, witty, dumb or a humorous character.

Fake Mr. Bean

Copy cats are not an inspiration but rather a disgrace for the people they represent so the brand managers of HBL should have tried to use another approach.

Humor Appeal, Not very well done!

The humor element which was used in HBL’s commercials did not prove laughter amongst viewers, maybe a smile but definitely not laughter. This type of humor can work for new entrants in the market but definitely not for an established entry like HBL.

Introduction

Introduction

Global and commercial banks in Pakistan nowadays are facing a threatening situation. Government regulations are escalating from day to day. Competition is emerging from international markets to non-banking companies. The need to invest more in cutting-edge information technology is growing on the daily basis.

Consumer trust in traditional lines of business is ever shrinking. As the funding cost and interest rates are rising, trust in commercial banking is plummeting.

With all such diverse challenges rising , what strategies and contingency plans should the top management come up with at commercial level for long term plans to succeed over the next decade.

It is found out that consumers at the commercial banking mostly require trust and convenience. New strategies should be implemented now to identify what opportunities lies ahead in this ever quickly changing environment so that their banking industry may successfully emerge from this uncertain period.

Banking industry in Pakistan has a diversified environment consisting for a few large banks and some small and medium sized banks. However competition is ever growing in such a type of industry. It is more becoming a game of survival of the fittest.

The poor economic growth rate in the country and energy crisis in the country have worn out hopes for quick recovery of the economy, leaving no option for competitive banks to remain in the game.

In such a type of environment new strategies have to be implemented to further influence consumers to invest more and put their trust into the banking industry where they would invest more even with the ever changing economy and government regulations.

With such a type of environment, this project would analyze one particular bank’s advertisement strategy through content analysis and how it used it to their advantage to influence and motivate consumers.

This Project would be a critical review HBL’s advertising campaign of using the portrayal or personification of Mr. Bean’s character in advertisements regarding phone banking, personal banking, debit card use and Banker’s cheque.

This is project will review critical subjective advertisements such as telephone banking, HBL banking, the use of debit cards and banker’s checks featuring Mr. Bean look alike as the main actor. This study will include an analysis of this type of advertising marketing campaign using the content analysis model.

About the company

Habib Bank Limited was founded in 1947 and has its headquarters in Karachi, Pakistan. Nauman K. Dar operates as President and CEO of HBL.

Habib Bank Limited and its subsidiaries, provides banking and other financial services principally in Pakistan. The company offers a combination of retail, investment, corporate, and commercial banking services. It also has operations in the Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, and the Middle East. As of December 31, 2011, HBL comprised of 1,464 branches, including 22 Islamic banking branches in Pakistan, as well as 42 branches outside the Pakistan.

About Mr. Bean

Mr. Bean is a favorite personality because of his unique way of approaching everyday problems in a rather roundabout way. He’s a lovable character who everyone would like to help out of his sticky situations. Being a man of few words, his humor is universally popular.

His everyday tasks seem to get him in and out of hilarious problems. Mr. Bean is always accidentally causing chaos every way he turns. Mr. Bean means well, but can sometimes be ignorant and very inconsiderate. Mr. Bean is like a child in a man’s body.

His personality can be summarized in the following words hapless, awkward, self-conscious, childlike and disaster-prone. While much of the humor is that universal physical comedy adored by small children, NOT ADULTS!

Background to the problem

The real concern is whether the introduction of such a marketing campaign is a huge decision in the right way or not by introducing Mr. Bean’s character in banking advertisements as banking is a serious business and to portray it with a character like Mr. Bean who is considered to be lunatic and a funny character.

Whether it works for the advantage of the bank or not.

Many questions arise such as

• Does this make product / service work?

• Do we really need analysis?

Unless these issues are met, there goes one more step towards the realization of this campaign to consider whether it succeeded or not.

This project will attempt to answer these questions in particular that this marketing campaign Mr. Bean is a successful or not?

We will mainly analyze the effectiveness and relevance of this particular campaign, a critical point of view using the model of content analysis.

Theoretical framework

The important factors to examine that this advertising campaign is successful, we will examine it through the Content analysis framework is which is given below.

Steps in Content Analysis

Develop Operational Definition of Sample Universe

Specify Research Hypothesis or Questions

Specify Sampling Plan

Determine Treatment of Duplicate Ads

Obtain Advertising

Train Coders

Develop Category System

Apply Findings

Analyze and Interpret Date

Code Materials and Assess Reliability

Pretest and Revision

We would first begin with the formulation of research questions or hypothesis that needs to be identified for conducting our content analysis. After which then comes the development of data collection instruments, data collection, analysis of raw data and ends with the conclusion and application for decision making.

Specify Research Hypothesis or Questions

In the first step we would begin with the specification of the research hypothesis or questions that what needs to be learned from this content analysis. This specification is important because it focus the content analysis and influences correct decisions made at the end of each step.

Research Hypothesis and questions about Mr. Bean’s Add Campaign

Prior research suggests that the persona of Mr. Bean’s character in the HBL phone banking and debit card advertisements is not so much influential and not social than the usual banking advertisements. This research hypothesis will determine if these aspects have an impact on the consumers or not.

Research Question

Advertisements having Mr. Bean’s fake character personification does not have influence on consumers as compared with the usual banking advertisements.

Hypothesis

Ho: HBL’s advertising campaign having Mr. Bean personification have a relation with the Product/service.

Ha: HBL’s advertising campaign having Mr. Bean’s personification does not have a relation with the Product/service.

Such type of hypothesis also depends on the advertisement’s content which involves such type of questions as well.

What benefits are our competitors communicating in their advertisements?

What visual devices are being used in HBL’s advertisement as compared with their competitors?

What type of promises, appeals or selling propositions are being used?

What tone or approaches are being used?

Do different messages or selling propositions appear in our competitor’s advertisements?

Develop an operational definition of the sample universe.

This step involves defining the sample universe, in this case the population of advertising that will be examined. A well constructed operational definition would eliminate all ambiguity and clearly define which advertisements we are trying to target in which time period.

Operational definition of the sample universe

This content analysis will examine the HBL’s advertisements featuring Mr. Bean’s look like character. The sample universe consists of ads appearing in 2011 and 2012 in the electronic media.

Specify Sampling Program

The sample plan would determine how specific type of advertisements from the sample universe will be selected.

Sampling Plan

Seven commercials were selected at random from a range of HBL’s ads featuring Mr. Bean’s lookalike character in the electronic media. These advertisements were about Debit card use, phone banking, HBL’s ATM bill payment, funds transfer banking and HBL’s service online banking.

These seven ads were specifically selected because all these ads involved Mr. Bean’s personification. These ads have been broadcast in the electronic media in year 2011 and 2012.

Obtain advertising

Seven ads were selected to perform content analysis.

HBL’s Debit Card advertisement. This ad also featured the famous Pakistani cricketer Shahid Afridi. This ad was of total 45 seconds duration.

HBL’s phone banking banker’s cheque advertisement. This ad also featured the famous Pakistani model Ayyan. This ad was of total 43 seconds

HBL’s ATM advertisement. This ad involved the use of bill payment through ATM. This ad also featured some of the famous Pakistani cricketers. This ad was of total 50 seconds

HBL’s mobile banking advertisement. This ad involved the use of mobile banking for funds transfer. It also featured the famous Pakistani cricket Shahid Afridi. This ad was of total 45 seconds.

HBL’s Debit card service advertisement. This ad was of total 38 seconds.

HBL’s online banking advertisement. This ad was of total 38 seconds.

HBL’s phone banking advertisement. This ad was of total 44 seconds.

Determine treatment of duplicate Ads

Many ads appear more than once in a given time period. It may also appear several times in the same television program. Therefore to code duplicate ads in this sample wouldn’t be necessary that is treating each instance of the duplicate ad as a separate ad. We would eliminate duplicate occurrences.

This content analysis will focus on advertiser’s brand strategies so duplication would be eliminated. In this case, the emphasis is on messages and content rather than exposure. Conclusions will be drawn about the advertiser’s approach by coding multiple occurrences of the same ad.

Develop a Category System

Development of a category system which consists of two steps.

Classification of categories of interest

Specify dimensions of each category

Each category will represent some information that will be extracted during the content analysis. Great care is taken by identifying each category. The set of categories selected for these particular advertisements is comprehensive. Categories are properly labeled and have a direct relationship to the research questions and hypothesis.

Step 1: Classification of categories of interest in HBL’s advertisements

The categories selected for this particular content analysis which will reflect about the competitive advertising strategies used for the HBL’s advertisements.

Commercial format

Rhetorical style

Production technique

Setting of ad

Speaker

Voice-over

Dress

Emphasis of ad

Use of content appeals

Commercial structure

Primary product benefit

Additional secondary benefits

Type of selling proposition

Commercial tone

Type of brand identification

Musical elements

Commercial characters

Product Introduction

Commercial Approach

Step 2: Specify dimensions of each category

This step would identify the specific limitations of each category selected. The identification of these dimensions come from prior research or advertiser’s practices within the service or product category. These category dimensions are relevant to the objectives of our content analysis.

Category Dimensions

Commercial format Announcer

Lifestyle

Celebrity endorsement

Issue Dramatization

Rhetorical style Informative

Production technique Combination

Setting of ad Inside-general

Inside-home

Inside-store setting

Outside-general

Speaker Anonymous announcer

Voice-over Male

Dress Formal suit

Combination

Emphasis of ad Issues

Use of content appeals Personality characteristics

Commercial structure Front-end surprise

Middle surprise

End surprise

Unexpected setting

Primary product benefit Easy

Reliable service

Secondary benefits Fast service

One stop solution

Type of selling proposition Ease

Quick service

Commercial tone Humorous

Amusing

Comical

Type of brand identification Banking service/Product

Musical elements Soft Catchy tone

Melodious

Rhythm

Commercial characters Mr. Bean

Pakistani Cricketers

Model

Product Introduction After 20 to 30 seconds of the advertisement

Commercial Approach Emotion

Preparing a Code Book

A code book is the dictionary of content analysis. It contains definitions and more elaborated details about the categories and dimensions selected for the HBL’s commercials. Code book is important to perform content analysis because they provide reference for all coders.

Code Book for performing content analysis of HBL’s advertising Campaign featuring Mr. Bean’s character.

Category: Commercial Format

This category deals with the format of the commercial. What it contains and what are its main elements:

Announcer: After 10 to 20 seconds of the commercial, a male announcer uses his voice narration to elaborate about the product/service benefits.

Lifestyle: The commercial uses the lifestyle of Mr. Bean’s character. It highlights the lifestyle of Mr. Bean’s character and how he is involved in serious situations including mental work but it is eased with the use of HBL product/service.

Celebrity endorsement: Some of HBL’s commercials also featured some famous Pakistani crickets and a famous Pakistan model Ayyan.

Issue Dramatization: The plot of each advertisement is based upon a storyline and what drama it creates in the commercial.

Category: Rhetorical style

This category deals with the approach of the commercial. What is its motive and what the commercial is trying to achieve.

Informative: The commercial is basically trying to educate or give information about its product/service to the viewers about how it is easier to use and what are its benefits in a humorous or comical way.

Category: Production technique

This category is about the production technique used in the commercial. The voice narration in the background along with the character’s appeal in the ad.

Combination: HBL’s commercial is a combination of both voice narration in the background explaining about the product/service along with the character acting out in the commercial.

Category: Setting of ad

This category deals with the ambiance or the surrounding in the commercials. A total number of seven commercials are selected to perform content analysis. The settings of the ambiance of these commercials are given below:

Outside-general: One of the commercials had everyday life situation setting where the character is traveling to places and using the product/service.

Inside-home: One of the commercials had a home based ambiance.

Inside-store setting: Three commercials had a store ambiance setting.

Outside-general: Two commercials had outside general ambiance setting. One in a cricket ground and one outside of a bank.

Category: Speaker

This category tells us about the speaker in the commercials.

Anonymous announcer: HBL’s commercials used a male voice narration in the background to describe about the product/service benefits and its uses.

Category: Voice-over

This category tells us about the voice over used in the commercials

Male: A male voice-over was used in all of the HBL’s commercials.

Category: Dress

This category tells us about the dressing style of the main character in the HBL’s commercials.

Formal suit: In most of the HBL’s commercials, Mr. Bean’s character was found wearing formal light grey coat with a dark brown pant except for one commercial where he was wearing a white umpire costume.

Category: Emphasis of ad

This category would tell us about the emphasis in the commercials. What is the basis of each advertisement and what conclusions are drawn from it.

Issues: Each commercial basically revolves around the character of Mr. Bean. How he behaves and gets himself into banking troubles and how it is resolved by the use of HBL’s product/service.

Category: Use of content appeals

This category would identify the appeal in the advertisement.

Personality characteristics: All HBL’s commercials portray the fake character of Mr. Bean. Mr. Bean’s character is loved and adored throughout the world by his witty and amusing habits. HBL’s commercials use the personification of Mr. Bean’s character to make it appealing for the viewers.

Category: Commercial Structure

This category refers to the use of surprise and unexpected elements in the HBL’s advertisements. Five dimensions of the HBL ads are as follows:

Front-end surprise: The first ten seconds of the commercial involves the opening of Mr. Bean’s character in a storyline. It uses the suspense element so that viewers may get eager to see what comes next.

Middle surprise: The middle portion of the commercial (11 to 20 seconds in a 40 second ad) uses the element of something happening unexpectedly in the commercial.

End surprise: The last ten seconds of the commercial presents solution to the viewers and uses the product/service or its brand name in the ending sequence with the product/service information.

Unexpected setting: The product/service is shown in an unexpected way to the viewers in a storyline so that the viewers may get amused by it.

Humorous intro: In all the HBL’s commercials, the first 10 seconds of the commercial always uses a humorous intro.

Category: Primary and Secondary product benefits

This category tells us about the primary and secondary product benefits in the commercial. Primary selling benefit receives the greatest amount of emphasis in a commercial. Secondary benefits may also be mentioned along with its primary benefits. The four dimensions used in this particular category are given below.

Easy: The commercial primary focuses on the easy service provided by the brand name.

Reliable service: The main focus of the commercial is to motivate the customers about the easy and reliable service the brand name HBL has to offer to its customers.

Fast service: The commercial also offers quick and faster service solutions to its customers.

One stop solution: The commercial also offer one stop solution to banking problems that is their product/service Debit card.

Category: Type of selling proposition

This category would tell us that what type of selling proposition does the brand HBL is trying to communicate in its advertisement.

Ease and quick service: HBL’s primary focus in its commercial is to provide quick and easy solutions to banking troubles through the use its product/service for example

HBL Debit card use

Phone Banking

ATM use

Category: Commercial tone

This category would tell us about the commercial tone in the advertisement. What type of tone does the HBL commercials follow?

All HBL commercials are humorous, amusing and comical in nature which revolves around the character of Mr. Bean who is in an amusing situation that happens because of a banking trouble.

Category: Type of brand identification

This category tells us about what type of product/service campaign it is and what are its main areas of brand identification.

Banking service/Product: HBL commercials are promoting its bank service along with its products such as Debit card use but the primary focus of the commercials is on its service industry.

Category: Musical elements

This category would tell us about the musical elements used in the HBL commercials.

Soft Catchy tone, Melodious, Rhythm: HBL commercials have soft catchy tones with melodious background music and rhythm which goes alongside well with the storyline and what is happening in the commercial.

Category: Commercial characters

This category tells us about the type of characters that are used in HBL commercials

Mr. Bean: The fake character of Mr. Bean is the main character lead in all HBL’s commercials

Pakistani Cricketers: Some of HBL’s commercials also features some famous Pakistani crickets like Shahid Afridi, Yonis khan and Umer Gul

Model: One of HBL’s commercials also featured a Top Pakistani Model Ayyan.

Category: Product Introduction

This category tells us when the product/service information in the commercial is displayed.

After 20 to 30 seconds of the advertisement: The information about the product/service of HBL is displayed after 20 to 30 seconds of the start of the commercial where a situation has happened involving Mr. Bean and the HBL product/service is the solution to the whole plot.

Category: Commercial Approach

This category tells us about the commercial approach.

Commercial Approach: In all HBL’s commercials, a humorous emotional approach appeals to feelings rather than logic. There is humor involved which can appeal to the audience or to the customers. There is also a positive approach involved where the commercial tells the customer how he or she will be better off if the product/service is used.

Code Sheet

A code sheet is very similar to a survey questionnaire. It is where individuals would evaluate the advertising and record their observations. A code sheet would be prepared following specification of categories and dimensions within a specific category.

Code sheet for the HBL’s advertising campaign featuring Mr. Bean’s character.

Commercials:

HBL’s Debit Card advertisement.

HBL’s phone banking banker’s cheque advertisement.

HBL’s ATM advertisement.

HBL’s mobile banking advertisement.

HBL’s Debit card service advertisement.

HBL’s online banking advertisement.

HBL’s phone banking advertisement.

Category: Commercial structure

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

Rate the commercial structure in HBL’s advertisement in your opinion, which was more appealing to you?

_____ Front-end surprise

­­­­­_____ Middle surprise

_____ End surprise

_____ Unexpected setting

_____ Humorous intro

Category: Primary and secondary selling benefits

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

Rate the Primary and selling benefits which in your opinion was important in the commercial

_____ Easy

_____ Reliable service

_____ Fast service

_____ One stop solution

Category: Commercial Approach

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

Rate the commercial approach which according to you was more important in all HBL’s commercials.

______ Humorous approach

______ Positive approach

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

To what extend did the commercial use a rational versus emotional approach? The commercials were:

_____ Entirely rational

_____ Mostly rational with some emotional elements

_____ Both rational and emotional, equally

_____ Mostly emotional with some rational elements

_____ Entirely emotional

From a range of 1-5, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest rating,

To what extend did the commercial use a positive versus negative approach? The commercials were:

____ Entirely positive

____ Mostly positive with some negative elements

____ Both positive and negative, equally

____ Mostly negative with some positive elements

____ Entirely negative

Train coders.

After the development of code book and code sheet, coders are selected and trained. Individuals must be selected with similar background and relevance to the advertisements and commercials for which the content analysis is being conducted. Training of coders is necessary so that they may know what the researcher is trying to achieve through the content analysis model.

Once selected, coders are trained in the coding procedure. The training process begins with the samples of commercials being shown to them, explanation of category system and their dimensions, category definitions and conclusions of coding.

Pretest and revision

Every content analysis is improved with the help of pretest and revision of the research materials. Pretesting improves the category system, category definitions and coding materials. The responses or each coder are then examined and further used for evaluate category definitions and dimensions.

Code the Materials and assess reliability

The coding process is done after the pretest and revision where coders observe advertising and record their observations. Code sheets would be further evaluated through the questionnaire survey form.

Holsti’s method would not be performed in this content analysis as statisticians have criticized this approach because it overestimates reliability.

The reliability of the data collected would be further examined by using correlation statistical technique.

Analyze and Interpret Data

Descriptive statistics can be calculated for the categories that appear on the code sheet for calculating variables. The descriptive analysis of categories would be shown in the interpretation of results and findings.

Apply the findings

The goal of this content analysis was to find advertiser’s strategies in the HBL’s advertisements. The final step in this content analysis was to find improved understanding about the content. After conducting this model, we came

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