It’s the thought that counts…

14 Dec

As much as I tried to convince myself that I wouldn’t do a Christmas blog, here I am about to break my promise to myself. I can’t help it. All that I have on my mind these days is Christmas, even with those pesky exams threatening to ruin my festive joy by looming over the entire holiday.

GiftSo, as I sit here writing my blog and thinking about what I’m going to present about next week, I’m distracted by the niggling temptation to search around online for Christmas gifts for my family. As much as I hate shopping in general, there’s something a little more enjoyable about Christmas shopping. So without getting too carried away with a mad Christmas theme, I’m going to rein it in to the bare elements of gift-giving.

MOTIVES FOR GIFT-GIVING

There are many occasions throughout a lifetime when gift-giving is customary, i.e. birthdays, Christmas, weddings, Valentine’s Day, graduation, christenings, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, retirement… pretty much any positive life event calls for a gift. Sherry (1983) asserts that nearly anything can be transformed into a gift, which is perhaps why picking something can be so difficult! But aside from these celebratory events, there are other reasons people choose to give gifts. Segev, Shoham and Ruvio (2012) found that there are tactical aspects to gift-giving such as to define your place in the social hierarchy, a desire for reciprocity, avoid potential social exclusion or building a desired identity. Segev et al. (2012) also suggest that gifts can be used to bring people closer together through increased perceived similarity, i.e. giving a gift similar to something you own, or ensuring a continued friendship through mutual future consumption, i.e. tickets to a gig. Gifts can also strengthen your relationship through personal shared memories, i.e. framed photographs of you together.

WHEN GIFT-GIVING GOES WRONG

bad_giftGiving gifts to other people can be tricky, especially if you don’t see the person very often and can’t figure out what they may want/need/don’t already have. You hope that they will appreciate the thought and effort you have gone to in deciding on a gift, regardless of whether or not they like it. Well it turns out that only if you mess it up, and buy a rubbish gift, will they even consider the thought you’ve put into it (Zhang & Epley, 2012). Zhang & Epley suggest that Theory of Mind reasoning is not automatic for us, so we won’t consider the thoughtfulness of another person unless the situation calls for it. We assume that our thoughtful gift decisions will be much more appreciated than simply buying what the person has explicitly asked for, but Gino and Flynn (2011) showed the exact opposite was true.

I think it’s safe to say that shopping for gifts isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, and it can be quite upsetting to buy somebody a gift they don’t like which adds a little bit of pressure to the whole ordeal. This can be particularly true for romantic gift-giving but Nguyen and Munch (2011) suggest that the way you feel about buying gifts in a new relationship can be related back to Bowlby’s Attachment Theory. Nguyen and Munch (2011) found that securely attached individuals were more likely to report enjoying gift-giving, whereas anxious and avoidant individuals found it to be more of an obligation. Another reason which may be contributing to the dreaded gift-giving process, is that the gift is often viewed as a symbolic representation of the relationship (Shurmer, 1971). So in terms of how serious the relationship is, there is added pressure to ensure you are both on the same page and conveying the right message. Flowers and chocolates won’t work forever.

This isn’t the only thing that makes gift-giving difficult. According to Ward and Broniarczyk (2011), buying gifts (for a close friend) which conflict with your sense of self can threaten your identity, such as buying branded goods for a rival football team. This can make you feel uneasy and can cause cognitive dissonance, which will subsequently make you more likely to go and buy something for yourself which strongly reflects your own identity (ibid).

BribesGift-giving has also been at the heart of many ethical concerns in business-to-business (B2B) transactions as they can often be cloud judgement and influence people’s decisions. Where there is a conflict of interest for the recipient, these gifts can be deemed as bribes making them fundamentally unethical (Fisher, 2007).

BUT GIFT-GIVING CAN BE GOOD!

So now that I’ve made you all feel miserable and nervous about buying presents, let’s look at some of the more positive aspects of gift-giving. It has been suggested that residents in care homes can benefit from improved mental health and wellbeing simply by participating in “giving” activities such as floral arrangements for house-bound patients (Cipriani, 2011). Research has also suggested that gifts in the workplace can significantly benefit worker productivity (Bellemare & Shearer, 2009).

Gifts are typically a method of social exchange with another person, but there is such a thing as self-gifting. I like the sound of that. Mick and Faure (1998) found that you are more likely to buy yourself a gift if you have successfully achieved something (reward self-gifts) rather than if you have failed (therapeutic self-gifts). The research also suggested that you are more likely to self-gift after success if you attribute the success to internal causes, and you are more likely to self-gift after failure if you attribute the failure to external causes (ibid). Some brands, particularly make-up brands, will even encourage self-gifting by using slogans such as L’Oreal’s “Because you’re worth it”.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas and gets gifts they actually want! If not, it’s the thought that counts eh!

 Shurmer, P. (1971). The gift game. New Society, 18 (482), pp. 1242–1244.

Charity starts at home.

5 Dec

I have to admit, I’m not as generous as I could be when it comes to giving to charity, and I’m often guilty of swerving to avoid street fundraisers (aka “charity muggers” or “chuggers” as they are now colloquially known). Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against giving to charity, I just feel a little put off by the forceful techniques used by some charity fundraisers. I understand that some people need a little coercion to donate, but surely the aggressive nature of these fundraisers is damaging the perception of charity, and after time people just become numb to that initial feeling of guilt when you walk past a charity fundraiser. In addition to this method of charity collecting, the over-use of television appeals has been suggested to make people “emotionally immune” to these charity pleas (Ein-Gar and Levontin, 2012).

Many charity appeals these days focus on particular individuals in their adverts, and provide names of these people to give a more personal touch and make the problem more real to the public. To quote Stalin (never thought I’d say those words), “One death is a tragedy, one million is a statistic”. It’s brutal, but it has actually been scientifically proven in the form of the ‘identifiable victim effect’ (Small and Loewenstein, 2003). By focusing on specific individuals it can help give a human face to a charitable organisation and increase willingness to donate.

However, Ein-Gar and Levontin (2012) found that this technique was not applicable to all situations. Their research suggests that individual-focused appeals were more likely to encourage donations when donors were “temporally or socially close to the donation target” but organisation-wide appeals were more effective when donors were “temporally or socially distant from the population in need” (ibid). To me, this seems that charities combatting issues such as animal cruelty or child abuse should benefit from the identifiable victim effect where the UK population can more easily relate to these issues compared to, for example, malaria or unsafe drinking water.

Another advertising technique which is commonly practised by charities is shock advertising (also termed yobbo advertising) where adverts are designed to shock and grab attention, with the aim of promoting further cognitive processing (Dahl, Frankenberger and Manchanda, 2003). By violating our social norms, these adverts can often be deemed inappropriate and offensive.

Image

While I agree that these work in grabbing attention, I can’t say the same for their effectiveness in encouraging donation. These appeals often ask for a prescribed amount of money (£2 a month etc.) which can be off-putting and quite demanding, and to me seem more like a business transaction than a philanthropic offering. £2 may not seem like a huge amount of money, but coupled with the fact that this is a direct debit scheme people may not be willing to make such a commitment. Another barrier with this plan is that people have to expend energy and effort to sign-up to the system, and generally speaking people will follow the path of least resistance.

In order to counteract this, the organisation called Pennies introduced a system whereby people can opt to round-up the cost of their shopping to the nearest pound and donate those extra pennies to charity. So simple and effective! This system has been employed in real shops but mainly in online shopping, which allows you to donate to charity without the looming social pressure of others around you. I can see how social pressure may be beneficial in increasing charity donations, but ultimately it just makes me think negatively towards giving to charity when I’m being coerced into it which totally defeats the purpose of giving charitably. The Pennies system seems ideal as it enables consumers to willingly donate and reduces the perceived cost of the donation amount by comparison to the purchase you are already making. Obviously, the banks arrived to ruin the day by introducing a “Save the change” debit card scheme which does exactly the same thing as Pennies, but puts the extra change into your savings account instead of to a charity. And you can imagine which option people would rather go for.

Instead of focusing on the guilt factor of giving to charities, the Pennies system perhaps builds a more positive relationship with potential donors by associating with brands that the consumer, presumably, already likes (considering that they are already purchasing from them). This also allows consumers to feel more philanthropic as the choice to donate is completely theirs without any coercive social pressures, and is less forceful than the imposed charitable donations some companies “add-on” to their products. Strahilevitz and Myers (1998) found that these charity bundles are not as effective when it comes to practical products as they are when it comes to “frivolous” products due to the more complementary nature of the positive feelings associated with both of these processes (donating and buying fun products). Perhaps another perspective is that consumers use the charity add-on as a way to justify purchases which may seem a little selfish or greedy, and reduce cognitive dissonance.

Size DOES matter

30 Nov

We live in a very image conscious world these days. We’re obsessed with our physical appearance, whether it’s make-up, hair styling, diets, cosmetic surgery, the list goes on. And our perceptions of what is beautiful has dramatically shifted over the years.

Changes in beauty

Both celebrities and advertising play a big role in shaping our perceptions of beauty and these are difficult to ignore. The fashion industry also has to take a lot of the blame for the constant use of thin models to advertise their clothes. This repeated association of thin = beautiful can be very damaging to your self-esteem. We all know how disheartening it can be to try on clothes in your size only to find that it doesn’t fit. So, in an attempt to boost consumer’s self-esteem, clothes retailers took matters into their own hands and changed  the sizes on their labels. “In this strategy, women’s apparel companies intentionally label a garment smaller than its true size” (Aydinoğlu & Krishna, 2012; pp. 565). This is known as vanity sizing.

Vanity Sizing

size_14_to_size_10_cartoonAydinoğlu & Krishna (2012) propose that vanity sizing encourages “positive self-related imagery” (pp. 565) which then boosts the consumer’s feelings about the brand. So, in other words, “I fit into a smaller size = I am so thin and sexy = I love Topshop.” You may think that this is ridiculous and that the number on a label can’t mean that much, but apparently it does. Ennis (2006) suggests that by appointing a numerical value to a woman, it is a means of defining who she is on the outside, which will in turn influence how she feels on the inside too.

So here’s a table of a few well-known UK clothes retailers who are guilty of this strategy. By looking at this table, you can see that from the top to the bottom of the table there is a variance of 1.6 inches (4cm)!  1.6 inches can make a huge difference (not in that way, you filthy pervert).

STORE SIZE 12 (waist in inches) SIZE 14 (waist in inches)
Next

28.4

30.4

M&S Per Una range

28.8

30.4

Wallis

29

31.4

Dorothy Perkins

29.2

31.2

Miss Selfridge

29.6

31.6

Marks & Spencer

29.6

31.6

Topshop

29.7

31.68

New Look

30

32

As a regular New Look shopper, this saddens me to think that I may have fallen victim to their shameless flattery and may really be a whole size bigger than I thought!
But therein lies the dilemma: I’m a regular New Look shopper. Maybe I am loyal to the brand because they’ve made me feel thinner (it’s probably more likely that it’s just because it’s cheaper and offers student discount). But if New Look were forced to adhere to new sizing policies tomorrow, and I had to go up a size, I would definitely become more self-conscious and less likely to buy my clothes there.

Vanity sizing also has negative implications for our health, because if retailers continue to alter their sizes more and more to compete with other retailers, women who wear a size 12, for example, would be happy with that and could reassure themselves that they were a healthy weight due to their clothes size, but perhaps wouldn’t realise that they were in fact nearly 2 inches wider.

Branded for life?

23 Nov

Brand Logos

The inspiration for this blog came from today’s lecture with James about brand strength and the ability to recognise logos. This reminded me of a quiz I was shown online by one of my friends last week. Some of you may have seen this sort of thing before, but it’s still fun and hopefully will entice you to read the rest of my blog!

All you have to do is try to identify which brand the logo belongs to, I’ve adapted these logos from Sporcle but with a few alterations. Give it a go, try writing them down to see how many you get right. (Or just do it in your head and claim you got them all right).

(I’ve put the answers at the bottom of the blog.)

So now I’ve hooked you in with a fun game, let’s get down to business. Studies suggest that brand recognition starts very early in life. Fischer et al. (1991) tested children aged between 3-6 years and found that 91.7% of the children recognised the Disney Channel brand logo, which may not be too surprising, but there was also high recognition rates for some “adult” product logos, such as cigarettes and cars (i.e. Old Joe cigarettes: 51.1% and Chevrolet: 54.1%). That’s mental. I was about to go on a huge rant about how kids are exposed to far too much TV these days, then I realised that study was from 1991! Mind blown.

Brands are a part of everyday life and it is suggested that we are exposed to between  3,000 and 10,000 brands per day (Dixit, 2008). And, as James mentioned in the lecture today, brand logos can alter decision-making, as demonstrated using the Iowa Gambling Task, causing a bias towards liked brand decks and away from disliked brand decks (Peatfield, Parkinson & Intriligator, 2012).

Brands are held as mental representations in the consumer’s mind and these are aided by the ‘visual equity’ factors of the brand, which are the colours, shapes, font etc. (Lightfoot & Gerstman, 1998). The power of the lettering used by brands is overwhelming. Just take a look at a few examples I’ve thrown together below, I’m sure you’ll recognise at least some of them!

So with these powerful representations already in consumer’s minds, is it wise to try and alter the logo? James mentioned that brands can become more robust when they demonstrate variations in their logo, such as Mars does. Walsh, Winterich and Mittal (2010) found that logo redesigns can be interpreted differently according to how committed the customer is to the brand. For those who are ‘weakly committed’ to the brand, the logo redesigns are viewed positively whereas, for ‘strongly committed’ customers, logo redesigns can have negative implications for the brand. As the committed customers are the most important to the company, surely these are the people you want to keep happy, and probably the people most likely to even notice the change? Risky business. Yet here are a few examples of companies that have thrown caution to the wind and changed anyway.

Would you say you’re aware of logo redesigns? Have any of these changed your feelings about the brand?

ANSWERS:

Set A:

(1) Warner Brothers  (2) Target  (3) BP  (4) Adidas  (5) AT&T (6) Mastercard  (7) Barclays  (8) Yamaha  (9) Mitsubishi  (10) Ericsson  (11) T-mobile  (12) Chanel  (13) Delta Airlines  (14) Hyundai  (15) Quaker Oats  (16) Wikipedia  (17) Vodafone  (18) Lufthansa  (19) Bank of America  (20) Michelin  (21) Lacoste  (22) HSBC  (23) Reuters  (24) British Airways  (25) Unilever  (26) Xerox  (27) Peugeot  (28) Staedtler  (29) Baskin Robbins  (30) Puma  (31) Roxy  (32) KFC  (33) Rolex  (34) ING  (35) Schwarzkopf  (36) Expedia

Set B:

(1) Nescafe  (2) Sprite  (3) Canon  (4) eBay  (5) Barbie  (6) Intel  (7) Snickers  (8) Tesco  (9) Lindt  (10) Virgin

Blogging about blogging

23 Nov

The Social Media Marketing Industry Report for 2012 revealed that 94% of companies are now using social media for marketing purposes. The report also revealed that the most frequently used sites, in order, are: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, and YouTube. As blogging is new to me, I thought I’d read up a bit about it and learn how companies use it for self-promotion.

I’ve learned that there’s more to it than just spreading positive word about your business. It’s important that company blogs are appropriate to their respective industry, and that what you write (and where you write it) is relevant to your objectives, otherwise it’s likely to be treated as spam and deleted. Blog marketing can consist of publishing articles in your own blog, contributing articles to other blogs or by leaving comments on blogs.

Wright (2006) recognises blog marketing as an effective method of communication between the company and their customers. It seems that blogging can be quite time-consuming (as many of you may have already figured out) but, in terms of marketing, putting in that extra time to facilitate a relationship between your brand and your customers helps to build trust which in turn leads to brand loyalty (Laroche, Habibi & Richard, 2012). Blogging can also be useful for B2B marketing by building networks of useful contacts by tactfully commenting on other company’s blogs. It’s important for bloggers to pick a tone of voice and stick to it, colloquial conversation can be appropriate for some companies, but this might not work if it’s not congruent with the brand image.

Facebook and Twitter are useful marketing tools for customers to show that they are fans of the brand, either by “liking” or “retweeting” company messages but there is a tendency for people to “like” and “retweet” things willy-nilly. This doesn’t really provide any real feedback to the company, whereas reading a blog is purposeful and requires effort. Blogs are a way of targeting customers who are truly interested in what the company has to say, and a way to communicate on a deeper level than the usual marketing spiel (Wright, 2006). Another benefit of blogs is that it’s just a little easier to convey information simultaneously via both text and pictures.

Company blogs are one way for huge “faceless” organisations to seem more accessible. It’s an easy way for company directors to approach their customers on a large scale and at least make it seem like they show an interest in you. Even Facebook has a blog. And it’s ranked 3rd in the list of the best 40 corporate blogs, and suggested to be the largest (PR Daily, 2012).  The blog even features entries from Mark Zuckerberg, which is a nice personal touch from such a huge company, adding a great deal of credibility to the blog.

Blogs have been described as a form of experiential marketing which can help “satisfy consumers’ emotional needs by providing more immersive customer experiences, fostering the customers’ intention to purchase” (Hsu & Tsou, 2011: 512). Blogs can provide more detail about the business for the brand evangelists, making customers feel more involved and knowledgeable. Companies can also use blogs to provide suggestions on ways to use their products.

Blogging to help promote your business can be hugely beneficial, but what about creating a business purely from blogging? The two best examples that come to my mind are those of Belle de Jour (left) and Perez Hilton (right). For anyone who isn’t familiar with these bloggers: Perez Hilton (Mario Lavandeira) is a celebrity blogger and Belle de Jour (Brooke Magnanti) created the blog called “Diary of a London Call Girl” which lead to two published books and later a TV series called “Secret Diary of a Call Girl”. Both bloggers use pseudonyms, but for very different reasons. Perez Hilton’s aim is to be in the public eye and be a celebrity, whereas Belle de Jour was created for anonymity. The success of these blogs just goes to show how influential and profitable blogging can be. According to Business Week, Perez Hilton’s blog is said to create $111,000 per month in ad revenue! If that’s not enough inspiration to start blogging, I don’t know what is.

Maybe this…?

Simples

2 Nov

So I’ve read quite a few blogs now, mine included, that have delved into the world of celebrity endorsement. So now, I’m going to look at a (possibly) more effective alternative to using a celebrity as a brand ambassador. Celebrity endorsed ads are expensive, time-consuming and often overrated. Especially when they could go completely wrong. The trouble with celebrities is that they have their own lives which are separate and possibly conflicting with the brand. They can get up to all sorts of mischief which can then have a negative impact on the brand image. There’s also the problem that celebs are often tied to multiple brands i.e. David Beckham. This can get confusing and dilute the power of the advert.

So what could be done instead? Create a celebrity out of thin air.

I’m talking about “spokes-characters”. They can be defined as fabricated characters which are created purely for the purpose of promoting a brand or product (Garretson & Niedrich, 2004). By using these characters, brands benefit from sole ownership of the endorser at a much lower cost. Animated characters, in particular, don’t require any sort of contract or ridiculous fee (Costa, 2010). Fabricated characters often produce more memorable adverts too, with Gio Compario increasing brand awareness of Go Compare by 50% in just 2 months and Aleksandr Orlov generating a 50% increase in market share for Compare the Market in less than 6 months (Costa, 2010).

Simon Myers, a partner at brand consultancy firm Figtree, notes that the most frequent use of these characters is in commodity sectors such as insurance, food or utilities. Brand characters may also be beneficial to markets where there is a weak consumer connection to bring more warmth and personality to the brand. The important aspect of using these characters is that they are not claiming to be knowledgeable experts about the product, but are simply intermediaries to the company professionals.

In the case of Aleksandr Orlov, the company have spawned a separate identity for him due to his popularity and public interest. He has his own Facebook and Twitter profiles, an autobiography and has even been interviewed on Daybreak. None of which had anything to do Compare the Market (directly), but there are obvious benefits for the company in terms of brand awareness and public appearance. As Urbick (2010) eloquently suggests, “paradoxically, characters tend to be more real than real people”. I find it fascinating that people relate more to a talking meerkat than to a human.

One major benefit of these spokes-characters is that they provide a direct association to the brand they are endorsing, whereas celebrities may conjure up many other memories for consumers such as the films they’ve been in or the songs they sing. Another typical feature of these adverts is a running storyline, which keeps you engaged and makes you want to see the next one. One company who used this tactic beautifully is BT. The story of Adam and Jane started back in 2005 and has evolved to focus on the son, Joe, at University. These adverts connect with the public as they are simply a portrayal of real life events, yet each one incorporates how BT is helpful in every situation. The adverts even managed to encourage viewer interaction by inviting you to vote on the outcome of the next advert, where the first poll (to choose whether or not Jane was going to be pregnant) generated 1.6 million votes (Banham, 2010).

The storyline is constantly adapting to customer needs as depicted through their feedback. The storyline of Joe moving to University connects to a lot of parents and highlights the importance of maintaining communication when your child moves out, which of course BT can help you with. The shifted focus to Joe’s life at University presumably hopes to target University students who will be in search of their first phone and internet provider. By being their first provider, they are more likely to create brand loyalty and secure life-long customers. And because the adverts are targeted to students, the focus has shifted from phone lines to internet providers to align with the prominent needs of the target audience.

Home, Sweet Home

24 Oct

National identity often ranks highly on an individual’s sense of self, and living away from home can often strengthen your patriotism. This is often expressed in consumption behaviours. Being Scottish, I can certainly relate to that. I find myself craving haggis, shortbread, macaroni cheese pies and butteries much more now I’ve moved out of Scotland (to the detriment of my health).

One of my former lecturers wrote an interesting article about Scottish national identity which emphasizes that Scots choose to claim their identity rather than have it forced upon them, as they could alternatively choose to claim their British nationality (Nancarrow, Tinson & Webber, 2007). This suggests that people who associate with being Scottish usually view their self-professed identity in a positive light. In particular, Scots living in other parts of the UK are not noticeably different in the sense of culture, language and appearance, so may chose to portray this identity via the activities they participate in or the products they consume. Some typically Scottish traditions have retained their heritage such as Burn’s Day (haggis, neeps and tatties), Hogmanay (New Year celebrations), Highland Games (caber toss etc.), St Andrew’s Day etc. but others are more commonplace such as playing golf, eating Salmon and drinking Scotch whiskey (Nancarrow et al., 2007).

Scottish companies can cleverly target the Scottish market by drawing attention to the origin of the product, as Scottish people are a very proud nation with 97% of Scots claiming to be proud to be Scottish, according to the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey (2003). Scottish people want to show their alliance to Scotland and buy Scottish produce whilst supporting local businesses. Therefore it is important to know the best way to communicate this identity to the target market.

Scottish humour can be fairly distinctive, ‘crude’ is probably the best word to describe it. Full of unnecessary swearing and a lack of social boundaries (Frankie Boyle may be an extreme example but you catch my drift). The soft drink company Irn-Bru pushes the boundaries of inappropriate in their advertisements and, as a consequence, are frequently removed from circulation. But Scottish people connect to this type of communication, and you may be interested to know that Scotland is the only country in the world where Coca-Cola and Pepsi are not the dominant choice in soft drinks (Jones, 2011; Goodman, 2012). That gives me a warm glow of Scottish pride.

I’m about to show some of Irn-Bru’s adverts now, apparently some people find them offensive so if you’re easily offended look away now…

This advert was the latest to be banned.

Irn-Bru print adverts are also equally lewd and usually displayed on the backs of their delivery trucks or billboards. Possibly inappropriate given a younger audience may see them, but are usually very witty and full of double entendres.

Nancarrow et al. (2007; pp48) suggest that “Identity is constantly evolving and influenced by both the positive – being Scottish (point of differentiation by association) – and the negative – not being English (disassociation)”. This is in line with research about the desired and undesired self. Ogilvie (1987) suggests that a better measure of life satisfaction comes from how far away you feel you are from your undesired self rather than how close you are to your desired self. Irn-Bru employ aspects of this in one of their print adverts, by dissociating themselves from the English and creating a shared community for the Scots.

Not to play too heavily on Scottish stereotypes (although most of them are fairly accurate), the Scots are well-known for having an unhealthy diet. We’ve tried deep-frying practically everything, sausages, burgers, pizzas, haggis, and even a Mars Bar (as if they weren’t unhealthy enough). So trying to promote a ‘diet’ drink perhaps wasn’t appropriate to the market, hence why the name was changed to Irn-Bru Sugar Free. Perhaps the word ‘free’ is more appealing than ‘diet’ to the stereotypically cheap Scot.

This advert is much more appealing to the Scottish market than the previous advert for ‘Diet Irn-Bru’ and the familiar Scottish accent makes the advert more relevant and personal. You’ll notice that the old advert didn’t have a Scottish touch at all, even the voice-over at the end is English. I do miss Raoul though.

Irn-Bru is so good at appealing to it’s home market that I get more of that warm Christmas feeling when watching their Christmas advert than when I see the Coca-Cola one. You even get a wee cartoon tour through some of the main attractions in Scotland: Falkirk Wheel, Forth Rail & Road bridge, Stirling Castle, Edinburgh Castle, Loch Ness, Glenfinnan Viaduct, Eilean Donan Castle, Glasgow Concert Hall & George Square.