TD communications analysis


Published on

Have you ever really wondered why companies advertise the way they do? This article dives into the approach one company took to produce ads on their product.

Published in: Business, News & Politics
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

TD communications analysis

  1. 1. Overview: Recently, I performed a Communications Analysis of the TD Ameritrade 4-page print advertisement for the Trade Architect product. The goal was to break down the ad and try to figure out their strategic approach and thought process that went into creating it. This document will also explain how TD Ameritrade measures up to marketing standards. Also, because Fast Company magazine was the channel used for the print advertisement, their enclosed customer profile statistics played a critical role in TD Ameritrade’s selection of that channel as well as what advertising content was selected. Communications Analysis of TD Ameritrade Advertisement and Fast Company Channel Prepared by: Scott MacFarland March 2012 Communications Analysis Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  2. 2. Brand / Product: •TD Ameritrade / Trade Architect Advertisement Specifications: •8.5”x11”Full page, 4-color, full bleed, print media. •1 Page intro display Ad, 2-page spread + 1 page follow Channel: •Channel: print magazine advertisements link to website Promotion: •Corporate and consumer oriented sales promotion Noise: •None Feedback: •Occurs only if customer visits TD website or if they contact the TD Ameritrade corporate number on the advertisement. Advertising Channel: Fast Company - March 2012 2 Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  3. 3. Advertising Classification: TD Ameritrade does a nice job of using both the national and primary demand classifications to inform or remind consumers of the company or brand’s features, advantages, benefits or generate demand for the Trade Architect product. TD Ameritrade dominates the market and this advertisement will help their new product Trade Architect gain market acceptance. TD Ameritrade Primary Target Audience Characteristics: •Digital Adopter •Male •Professional, white collar •Business owner or C-level •$150k or higher HHI TD Ameritrade is active in the Target Marketing Process by: •Identifying a market with an unfulfilled need •Determining their market segmentation •Selecting a target market •Positioning their new product through national print advertising Market Segmentation: •Geographic: US, probably major metropolitan designated market areas (DMAs) •Demographic: mostly male, working professionals, mid-career, management or officer level, entrepreneur, mostly Baby Boomers and Gen X •Socioeconomic: High salary (mid to upper 100s), discretionary income, college degree or higher •Psychographic: Inclined to technology, innovation, money management, investing, do-it-yourself professional The Marketing Mix: •Product: Trade Architect •Price: Unpublished in advertisement •Place: 877-tdameritrade •Promotion: Trade free for 60 days + $600 Brand Identity: Using TD Ameritrade’s Square logo as seen on other advertisements and on banking centers will help with brand association. Co-branding with Olympic symbol will provide additional credibility through brand association. Brand Equity: TD Ameritrade has a strong image in the marketplace and is capitalizing on that brand equity to help introduce Trade Architect Brand Loyalty: TD Ameritrade customers do not have loyalty to this product because it is new to the market. However, customers using other TD Ameritrade products and services will most likely sample this new product if they are satisfied with TD Ameritrade overall. Promotional Mix: Advertising - Interactive / Internet Marketing Concentrated Marketing: TD Ameritrade has selected a market segment that likes to be a self-investor using online tools and is attempting to capture a large share of the market. Positioning by: Use or Application TD Ameritrade has positioned itself in the market to be for self-traders who want the power of a web-based trading platform and the credibility of TD Ameritrade’s global brand. Audience Contact Tools: Three of twelve tools are represented in this advertisement. Print media (newspapers, mag), Internet, Interactive as well as Events and Sponsorships. 3 Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  4. 4. Based on the target audience of Fast Company magazine, it is apparent that TD Ameritrade is going after a very similar audience. An audience that is very successful and relatively early-on in their careers. Brand Similarity 86% 0% 100% Read for insights and new ideas 81% Read for out of the box ideas 74% Read for inspiration Key Components 69%Male 64%Are business decision makers 48%Top management or Executive 37% Owner / partner in their own business 31% Female $$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $$$ $$$ $ $ $ $182,406 Household IncomeMedian Age 43.7 30 40 This page has several key components that help give a clearer picture of who the Fast Company reader is. These are all very important to TD Ameritrade’s decision to advertise with Fast Company. Take a look at how the target audience profiles are very similar. Fast Company Reader Profile 4 Facts: Courtesy Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  5. 5. Fast Company Brand Characteristics: TD AmeriTrade payed very close attention to the Fast Company six brand characteristics to the right as they are extremely important and inherent in the TD Ameritrade customer. Technology Leadership Affluent and influential readership Design Innovation Ethonomics Brand Characteristics Advertising with a Brand is like Partnering: The target audience of both the advertiser (TD Ameritrade) and the publisher (Fast Company) must be a close match or the efficacy of the advertisement will not be yield the return that is expected. Partnership 5 Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  6. 6. Consumer Communications Process Perception: TD Ameritrade has a well-respected name, therefore the perception should be positive and expectations high. Sensation: If I was an investor using online tools, my immediate response after reading the TD Ameritrade ad would be to log on to the website and check it out even further. I would want to see all the features, advantages and benefits they are offering. Evaluative Criteria: These are the messages in the ad that are the key criteria being mentioned. These eleven items are very important in convincing the consumer to make a purchase decision. •Heat Mapping •Earnings and Profitability Analyses •Live streaming CNBC News •Center of trading universe •View market simply and Visually •Share with trading community •Everything you need •No platform fee •Web-based trading platform •Commission free •$600 bonus Source Message Channel Factors TD Ameritrade Trade Architect Print + Web What is the process the consumer will go through in responding to marketing communications? •Source - TD Ameritrade •Message - Introducing Trade Architect •Channel factors - Integrated Print and Web 6 Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  7. 7. Source Encoding Decoding Receiver Sender’s field of experience | Receiver’s field of experience Channel Message Communication Process: This process involves both the sender (TD Ameritrade) and the receiver (the reader of the Ad). It also has five key elements that are critical when deciding how to create ad content that actually works. Here’s the key, the Channel Message crosses over with both the Sender’s field of experience and the Receiver’s field of experience. In this case, TD Ameritrade must know their target audience extremely well to create this print ad and link to the web. On the flip side, the receiver should be influenced by the content and visuals of the ad so that they are compelled to take action. Now you see why The Channel message is so important. Source: TD Ameritrade Trade Architect Advertisement. Encoding: TD Ameritrade provides information with a combination of a visually stimulating graphic layout and text content that is easy to ready and succinct. Channel Message: Print + Web - great choice because the 3 page layout is well used because after you think you are done reading the features, advantages and benefits, the 3rd page drives home the final key message and close. The benefit is, the user can take the ad with them to re-read again for reinforcement. Decoding: The Advertisement should be easy to understand if the user is computer / web savvy. The content in the Advertisement makes this quite clear for the Receiver to decode the message. Receiver: The receiver will be enticed by this strategy. Sender and Receiver Consumer Communications Process 7 Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  8. 8. Persuasion Mix Source Message Channel Receiver Destination Message Presentation 2 Attention 4 Comprehension 1 Yielding Retention Behavior 4 3 2 1 5 5 5 5 5 5 The Persuasion Mix: Helps TD Ameritrade marketers see how each controllable element interacts with the consumer’s response process. Receiver / Comprehension: can the receiver comprehend the ad? Yes Channel / Presentation: Which media will increase presentation? Print / Web Message / Yielding: What type of message will create favorable attitudes or feelings? Feature-rich Ad that appeals to the intellectual investor Source / Attention: Who will be affective in getting consumer’s attention? TD Ameritrade Brand name Destination: Fast Company magazine plays an important role in every part of the Persuasion Mix5 4 3 2 1 Legend: 8 Tuesday, March 27, 2012
  9. 9. Message Structure: In developing the message structure of the advertisement, TD Ameritrade has done a nice job in using the recency effect. They closed with a strong, convincing call to action along with an incentive to make a purchase decision. Ad Message Recall: Advertisements must determine whether their message should draw a firm conclusion or allow the viewer to draw the conclusion - TD Ameritrade is allowing the user to draw a conclusion. However, if I am a trader, I really must look further because I would be throwing away $600 if I didn’t. One-Sided Message: TD Ameritrade only mentions positive attributes or benefits in the Advertisement. Qualitative Media Effect: The combination of Print and Web highly influence the message because they can display the content in a manner that is compelling and has a long shelf life. It can also provide deeper information on the website. Lastly, TD Ameritrade can measure the effectiveness by driving users to the web and phone. Models of the Response Process: The TD Ameritrade advertisement used the Hierarchy of Affects segment in the Models of the Response Process. There are six aspects of this process; Awareness, Knowledge, Liking, Preference, Conviction, and Purchase. I feel that this process was used in that a strong presentation was made to gain awareness with a four page display ad that increased knowledge and liking of the product offering. At the time of my reading, I instantly determined a preference based on the amount of information presented. Then, a convincing call to action along with an incentive that guided me to make a purchase decision was made. Foote Cone and Belding Grid: TD has done a masterful job in maximizing the concepts of the using the Foote Cone and Belding Grid. The advertisement is highly visual displayed over four pages thus playing to the right-brain. The left-brain also is targeted in that the more rational, cognitive thinker is teased with pertinent information about the Trade Architect platform. Overview: TD Ameritrade and their Trade Architect product advertisement do a great job of communicating the message and providing the reader a simple and effective way to understand a complicated platform. They also provide the reader an incentive to open an account that will most likely capture the attention of a high percentage of readers. The website is functional and easy to understand and helps the user to dig deeper in to the features, advantages and benefits of the product. 9 Tuesday, March 27, 2012