The case focuses on brief elaboration, importance, objectives and components. While there are many ways to elaborate a brief, the overriding goal is to outline the most relevant guidelines for campaign design, and the decisions required to launch an advertising campaign.
This case may be used for the first marketing course in MBA curricula, as well as in executive education programs addressing communications and advertising strategy issues.
On a cold July afternoon in 2005, Matías Ruiz faced a difficult challenge. After months of long presentations and detailed discussions, the budget for a new advertising campaign had been finally approved. Ever since its arrival in Argentina, the company had concentrated all its efforts on positioning its corporate brand. Now with a firm standing in the domestic market, the time had come to advertise Lubrax, Petrobras' lubricant brand. Bearing in mind that the goal was to build a unique and independent brand identity for Lubrax while preserving its links to Petrobras, Ruiz's team, along with Diálogo Publicidad, a local advertising agency, had prepared three TV advertisements. Ruiz had to choose the most suitable campaign with an approved budget of US$ 3 million – 40 percent below the sum he had hoped to raise. At least one of those ads had to be launched in late October 2005, in time for the category's seasonal consumer sales peak. To do that, Ruiz needed to make a decision and to present a complete proposal to Lubrax's Marketing Director. This case study describes the questions confronting Ruiz at that time – Which ad should we pick? What brand image do we want for Lubrax? What is it that we wish to communicate? What is our goal? What segment are we addressing?
Expected learning outcomes
The case provides an insight into the use of advertising campaigns as a marketing tool, describing the company's competition, consumers, distribution channels and organizational hurdles. As a result, it may be used to help students: understand communications complexities, delving into each step in the process and taking stock of relevant decisions involved; learn about the research studies and data analyses required to build a communications plan that fits in with a company's strategy; manage a specific marketing budget; gain experience on advertising campaign development and subsequent evaluation; and survey the mix of marketing drivers needed to boost business sustainability. It will enable students to realize both the significance of thorough brief preparation to pursue a company's strategic goals and the importance of ensuring the ad chosen matches that brief.
Teaching notes are available; please contact your librarian for access.
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