PETA as a brand is Pointed, outrageous, admired, and criticized.
PETA's messaging is the type that makes the audience sit up and take notice.
PETA is highly active. It has already explored most forms of marketing techniques- TVCs, gorilla marketing, campaigns, print ads, Celebrity endorsement.
It's also everywhere. PETA as an organization has jumped on the social media bandwagon in a big way, and is riding shotgun on blogs, YouTube, MySpace, Flickr, and lots of word-of-mouth initiatives.
PETA focuses on four areas where animals suffer the most:
On factory farms
In clothing trade
In the entertainment industry
They also work on a variety of other issues, including the cruel killing of beavers, birds and other "pests," and the abuse of backyard dogs.
Some of their promotional material for various campaigns are:
Animals used for clothing
Animal testing and dissection
Animals used for entertainment
Present Marketing strategy
For each of their projects PETA looks at two ways of reaching out to people
-one is through media, either from celebrity support or a creative demonstration,
- the other is through marketing (by putting video online, buying online ads, pitching it to bloggers, making an interesting Web feature, providing activists with tools to promote the idea, facilitating people taking action, emailing something to the supporters, sending a bulletin to their friends on MySpace, updating Wikipedia with relevant information, etc.
PETA has 26 years of campaign and media experience.
It grew from a network of 7,500 youth activists to over 100,000 energetic guerrilla marketers.
However there is a gap!!!
A decade back with supermodels like Naomi Campbell and Kate Moss ready to stay naked rather than wear furs, fur clothing had gone out of fashion. However, today most fashion magazines feature top brands flaunting fur collection.
Its tactics are growing increasingly predictable and, therefore, ineffective.
Shock advertising is failing to connect with the people and instead of being motivated to support the cause they end up criticizing the organization.
PETA is getting branded as an extremist and its exclusionary marketing tactics is not helping the brand.
Hiring B class celebrities
Using outrageous forms of advertising featuring women in vulgar poses. Invites criticism rather than attention to the cause.
Extreme negativity against non vegetarians.
Messaging doesn’t invite or motivate people to join the cause, rather they are just limited to creating a sensation.
Since following the same marketing strategy from decades, Predictable. So the message has become ineffective.
People view PETA as a bit of a cult, “either you agree with us 100% or you’re out.” We need to change this and adopt an inclusive marketing strategy .
There many who feel very strongly for one cause of PETA but may not adhere to the other causes. For example, a person may feel strongly against the use of fur but may not be a vegetarian. PETA does not give an opportunity to these people. The idea is to identify these people and convert them into passion groups through the new media platform.
There are others who feel strongly for the causes that PETA supports but have never taken the initiative or got the opportunity to actively do anything for it. They are Pseudo players who feel good about the fact that there are animal rights activists who are fighting for the cause. We need to bring these pseudo players together through the social media platform.
Right now they have mostly youth activists. Our idea is to involve people from all age groups to project PETA as a thinking and supporting brand. For this we need to include prosumers in our new media campaign. They would not only consume the ongoing campaigns but would also add to their growth.
Move from ‘Don’t’ messages to ‘Think and do’ messages.
Passion Groups: Support the cause that you strongly feel for. Your efforts count.
Pseudo players: Support in whichever way you can, don’t sit and watch.
Prosumers: Think…if it makes a difference to society, then support it.
Activists: Be positive! Make a difference with care.
Use all forms of media effectively to create awareness and action for the causes using the new messaging and branding strategy.
Target area wise issues.
Involve real people.
Strategy: New Media
PETA already has a strong presence in new media through twitter, facebook, myspace youtube, blogs and its own website.
The online world is expanding. Newer social networking channels like second life and linked.in would also be included to form communities.
Community members would be encouraged to promote the cause and communication material through different channels. The communication material would involve videos which can be uploaded on You Tube, web banners, discussion threads, newscasts, podcasts.
Recognizing and Fighting the most important cause specific to an area by the community members.
Keep the new media updated with what PETA is all about, what it is doing, the effects of its efforts and the causes by:
Posting videos on video sites like youtube
Posting tweets regularly
Keeping the matter on its own website updated
Strategy: Traditional Media
The publicity aspect to be more stressed upon than the paid advertisements.
Publicity to be aimed at by
Events and on- ground activities
Community/ Individual effort and effect
Celebrity participation and testimonials
Advertisements: To keep a brand and cause recall, advertisements through OOH, TV and print media.
New Media: Tactics for Social Networking sites
Communities would be formed for people supporting the causes on social networking sites.
The community members would be encouraged to promote the communication of the cause that they support through different channels.
Regular interactions would be kept on with the members and feedback on what they are doing to support the cause would be taken weekly.
The people who actively support the causes would be inducted as volunteers.
All volunteers would be invited to PETA day meeting: every second Saturday of the month.
PETA day- Every Second Saturday
An effort to bring the activity on ground from just being online.
Area segmented issues to be recognized and targeted.
Each volunteer would be invited to PETA day meeting on every second Saturday in their respective city.
Webinars: The volunteers can interact with the volunteers from different areas as well as PETA employees to discuss strategies.
A user friendly and highly interactive online game would be started on sites like facebook.
The user avatar would save animals from cruelty and make the world a better place for them.
A virtual world which enables its users, called residents, to interact with each other through avatars.
The avatars would get rewards on:
Promoting ethical behavior for animals in the virtual world.
Fur free garments
‘ Not tested on animals’ cosmetics
Leather and animal product free accessories
Tweets and discussion threads on Twitter
Communities of professional media people and activists on Linked.In
Regular update of videos pertaining to branding message on youtube.
Photograph competition on Flickr and networking sites.
Communities and PETA days leading to…
Different causes: examples
Vegetarian food festival to promote vegetarianism
Cosmetic stalls to promote ‘not tested on animals’ cosmetics
Fashion show to discourage use of fur and animal accessories
Rallies to promote awareness about causes and gain support
Area wise issues: examples
USA: cruelty on cows
China: cruelty on dogs
India: lack of animal ethic policies and laws
Events would generate:
Interest!...and coverage on the efforts and effects on
TV: Reality shows, news
Radio: RJ mentions, Interactive discussions
Print: Hard news and following articles
New Media: Blogs, tweets, status messages, videos, podcasts, news articles
The overall result… Ads
Control would be kept over the consistency and cordination of messages through periodical meetings.
The effectively would be checked by periodical market research.
Events to be organized only by the inducted volunteers.