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Lava PR - An Introduction To Semiotics


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An introduction to Semiotics and how the practice can aid PR, marketing, advertising and branding.

Published in: Business

Lava PR - An Introduction To Semiotics

  1. 1. Hello. Cultural Branding for the 21 st Century.
  2. 2. Semiotics. <ul><li>Current branding / marketing issues </li></ul><ul><li>Culture and interdependency </li></ul><ul><li>Management of meaning & language </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction to Semiotics </li></ul><ul><li>The importance of objectivity and not taking ‘reality’ for granted </li></ul><ul><li>Examples & processes </li></ul><ul><li>Brands that do it well </li></ul><ul><li>How it can help us </li></ul>
  3. 3. Challenging time for Marketing. How can my brand have presence across many platforms? How can I persuade consumers to embrace my brand world? Should I re-evaluate my media planning/ media spend?
  4. 4. Culture. ‘ Culture’ has come to play a key role in today’s society Postmodernism: merging boundaries between different social & cultural forms
  5. 5. Interdependency. Consumers are using brands to give more meaning and purpose to their lives Brands and culture are increasingly co-dependent A key way for brands to assume this role across a range of platforms is by fusing brand identity with broader cultural developments
  6. 6. Management of Meaning . Building brands as cultural icons creates inspiring connections with consumers … Ensuring the organic growth and profitability of the brand Therefore need to look at positioning strategy and brand architecture, NBD, NPD, creative development and executional refinement (packaging etc)
  7. 7. Semiotics.
  8. 8. Semiotics.
  9. 9. Semiotics. So what? CULTURE Semiotics looks at the relationship between branding and culture through the medium of signs SIGNS Through examining signs and what they mean to consumers, semiotics reveals often overlooked meanings and can create attention or differentiation BRANDING
  10. 10. Semiotics. So what? How a sign mediates branding and culture…
  11. 12. Research Psychology talking to consumers consumers instinct & ‘feelings’ Conscious culture & communications analysing ads, packs, NPD etc consumer as cultural decoder Unconscious Semiotics As it is now (dominant codes) As it will be (emergent codes) Qualitative research ask consumers what their opinions are, semiotics investigates where those opinions come from
  12. 13. Semiotics. So what? PAST / RESIDUAL PRESENT / DOMINANT FUTURE / EMERGENT EMERGENT DOMINANT RESIDUAL <ul><li>signposts of the future </li></ul><ul><li>strong brands often create new myths which contradict current category / cultural perceptions </li></ul><ul><li>ubiquitous codes </li></ul><ul><li>of present day </li></ul><ul><li>weakening & outdated - signs of the past </li></ul>Semiotics tracks the way culture changes and identifies symbols signalling that change
  13. 14. Semiosphere. Chain Associations. Body language Sex Art Branding Architecture Fashion Science Industrial design Dance Sport Ecology Provides socio-cultural frame, tracks shifting trends, probes for category patterns, identifies codes and discourses
  14. 15. Semiosphere. Chain Associations. Art Branding
  15. 16. Semiosphere. Chain Associations.
  16. 17. Example. Semiotics helps a skincare brand (US, Brazil, Germany) MOISTURISATION Refreshing, Water-based / Liquid, Serious / Aggressive, Lighter, External, Correcting/Repairing NOURISHMENT Indulgent, Solid/Food, Playful / Warm / Loving, Strengthening & Weightier, Internal & External, Improving / Boosting Semiotics identified emergent key cultural trends beyond the skincare category and how they could be leveraged to signal a ‘nourishment’ positioning as opposed to category-wide moisturisation Emergent Codes in food & eating led to specific recommendations on packaging, point of sale, product formula, crucial to credible re-positioning of skincare brand
  17. 18. Example. Semiotics and CO2 emissions identity project MULTIPLE ICONS Unclear message, static image, consumer outtake confused - dark colours only code problem not solution SINGLE UNIFYING ICON Icon codes problem (linked to popular phrase) and solution (reduction of size & blue sky clarity), active icon Semiotics identified contradictions communicated by signs & imagery in existing brand comms and executional solutions for strengthening overall message and consumer awareness of and engagement with campaign Semiotic insights led to specific recommendations on executional cues for logo & above/below the line communications crucial to credible re-brand and development of new advertising campaign
  18. 19. Semiotics. <ul><li>Understand the motivations that drive consumer choices </li></ul><ul><li>Identify marketing conventions and break them </li></ul><ul><li>Produce better creative work </li></ul><ul><li>Locate the mental levers to change future behaviour </li></ul><ul><li>Understand how emergent trends are signalling socio-cultural change and how to leverage this knowledge for brand benefit (eg. Cadbury’s & Olympics) </li></ul>
  19. 20. Thank you. Lava Upper Floors 44/45 Silver Street Lincoln LN2 1EH t 01522 842 800 20 Fletcher Gate The Lace Market Nottingham NG1 2FZ t 0115 812 5535 e [email_address] w