Harvesting – Winning Angels: the 7 fundamentals of early-stage investing.

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Initially, I thought this section would be about how to harvest investment opportunities.  But to my surprise it was about how to harvest the results of your investment.  Amis and Stephenson point out early in the section that “Harvesting is the end game of early-stage investments, the financial score by which you will measure your success.”  As they review the 5 fundamental types of positive harvest, we find that Harvesting our “fruits” are not as easy as saying that we want out.  It needs to be a little more strategic that than as we want to leave as little on the table at the end as possible.  However, our strategic opportunity to do so is not as controllable as it may seem. 

The seven fundamentals to Harvesting as listed by Amis and Stephenson are Walking Harvest, Partial Sale, IPO, Financial Sale, Strategic Sale, Chapter 11, and Chapter 7.  These are financial terms and events that many of us may have heard about and may even have thought we knew a lot about, but Winning Angels gives us the view from the eyes of an angel or VC that may see these as an exiting event.  Obviously, Chapter 11 and 7 are negative bankruptcies and we want to stay away but understanding that they are a possible ending spot for our start-up is an important thing to understand.  The other five are positive events but once we review each one from Amis and Stephenson’s teachings, we can understand how important it is for strategic planning to take place through out the timeline of the investment. The ultimate plans of the entrepreneur, matching with angels and VC and growing value in each round of investment can be as influential on the business value as the market opportunities and profitability of the business. 

As an angel reviews the business I agree with Amis and Stephenson’s point to “Listen for the magic word.”  That word being exit.  The result of any investment is a return on your money.  If the entrepreneur wants to run the business for ever and does not have a plan to grow the business (value) to a point greater than they then your investment return may be limited by what harvesting events come to a result.  If an entrepreneur wants your investment but wants to run the company for ever then you are most investing for the cash flow of the business.  This is great if a walking harvest is what you are looking for but if you want a BIG BIG PAYDAY then the options are limiting.

As entrepreneurs in this program we may not have been this strategic in our plans to harvest our profits and retained earnings as the value of our company grows.  This section heightens our thoughts and challenges our thinking about where we ultimately want tour businesses to go.  “Winning Angels: the 7 fundamentals of early-stage investing” gave me a greater insight to the possibilities of where I may want to take my entrepreneurial desires and it certainly is leaving me with the understanding that I have more to learn.   

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Supporting – Winning Angels: the 7 fundamentals of early-stage investing.

Winning Angels: The 7 fundamentals of early stage investing ...

It is understood that airplanes burn vastly more amounts of fuel taking off and accenting to cruising altitude than they do for the remainder of the flight.  I had a boss and career mentor use that point often to me early in my career as he made the analogy that the energy spent early in your business may seem disproportionate but it pays for itself later.  Another life mentor has told me many times that airplanes are constantly falling.  The aerodynamics of the plane along with a measured amount of energy keep the plane in the air.  His point was to take care of yourself and your “dynamics” and understand where to focus your energy.  I have also heard many times that flying is just falling with style.  I could conclude the comparison here that every business can fail at some premature point in its flight.  You can tell that I enjoyed the special sections 3 and 4 of the Supporting Fundamental where Amis and Stephenson review an excerpt from David Berkus’s book Better Than Money where Berkus uses a lot of flight analogies to describe a failing business and the options in bankruptcy.

Berkus makes the point that “any landing you can walk away from is good landing “cause you’ll live to fly again tomorrow””  So how do we recognize when our business may be failing and how do we fail correctly if there is no way to save it.  Berkus also points out that many entrepreneurs, as many times they are in the pilot’s seat, may not be able to recognize when the business is failing until it is too late.  Eminent bankruptcy may not only be hard to recognize for an inexperienced entrepreneur, but it may be a reality they do not want to face and may look to ignore it.  Forecasting and Horizon scanning would be an important exercise for any entrepreneur and could give them the opportunity for contingency planning in case of failure.  Most importantly, there reputation is at stake and how they hand the failure professionally may work in their favor for future ventures, living the fly another day. 

I think it is easy to see where the founding entrepreneur may not have the best perspective to assess the overall health of the start-up.  Only the most experienced that may have been through a failure may be able to recognize the subtle slow growing problems that can lead to bankruptcy and have the emotional competency to keep their ego in check.  As angels have varying intentions of time and effort they will give to their roll in the start-up, the situation of an inexperienced entrepreneur may be where a lead investor is most needed.  Supporting the entrepreneur with leadership and more importantly a different vantage point to recognize failures can provide much value.  The reputation of all are at stake at how they handle any upcoming failure.

Until then, many of us seem to be on the runway and fine tuning our engines. 

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Negotiating – Winning Angels: the 7 fundamentals of early-stage investing.

Before this book, I thought that all Angel Investors and Entrepreneurs did was negotiate.  And of course, ABC’s Shark Tank supports that notion.  I did believe that every time that an Angel or Venture Capitalist reviewed a deal it would be a negotiation.  This section like the others we find out there is more to it than what our predetermined thoughts may be.  To think that that to negotiate hard before an angel would invest may hurt more than it would be worst is a little counter intuitive.  An Angel certainly needs to keep their eye on what the best fit would be as well as their predetermined strategy. 

Amis and Stevenson state early in the section that “winning investors simply do not negotiate.”  Either the deal fits their overall strategy, or it does not, either they have chemistry with the entrepreneur, or they do not.  Some just see it as a waste of their time and would rather not disrupt the health of the Start-up or rattle the entrepreneur from the start. “Many of the same angels who do not want to focus on structure will also not want to spend time on negotiating, even to reduce the price.”  Many feel that starting off the relationship with the entrepreneur in the right direction is worth more than making them regret any value that got negotiated from them.  The bigger picture may be the overall health of the start-up versus having a disgruntled entrepreneur or a leveraged investment that is not as attractive to second round investors.

I think one of the most important things for an Angelis for them to take a hard and honest look at what they are ultimately trying to achieve. Strategizing and outlining their needs and interest in a One-Pager will help to keep them on track as well as give entrepreneurs up front information to assessing if the relationship would be a great match or not.  I think this sets a lot of ground expectations between both parties.  This can also help the Angel stay on the path of what their overall strategy and not allow emotions like ego or greed to drive the opportunity.  I got a lot out of figure 41.1 in the book that highlights that clear positions and stances from both the entrepreneur as well as the angel allows for clarity with any issues that would need to be resolved to reach a deal.  Organization and clarity are most important for both parties involved. 

Amis and Stevenson point out that “angels who negotiate are more likely to have an active role in their investment.”  I think that is an important point as the drive to negotiate came from the need to have some control.  The negotiating action may come from an internal need or can be strategic and well thought out.  Whatever the reason, it is important to have an end in mind or you may just negotiate for something that may not be important for you. 

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Structuring – Winning Angels: the 7 fundamentals of early-stage investing. – Week 5

WCU ENT640 – Entrepreneurial Feasibility Analysis

To begin the section on Structuring, Amis and Stephenson state that “the what and who of your investment are far more important than the terms.”  However, the varying strategies regarding this subject between current Angel Investors and Venture capitalist differ greatly and even contradict this statement all together.  Like a lot of fundamentals, as we learn the adjoining pieces that structure the deal can complicate things if we don’t make the effort to “Keep It Simple Stupid.”  I also learned in this section that investing in a start-up can have more considerations and negotiation than just handing over some capital for some equity in the company.  Predominantly however,  Amis and Stephenson make a very detailed and informative case that unless you are looking for a specific type of protection or edge then keeping the deal as simple as possible can be very important to the overall health of the start-up both now and in the future as further rounds of investing come into play.

There is a dominating theory that the more complicated you structure the deal in the early stages of investing the more restrictive you make the later rounds or even into the life of the company.  Negotiating too much control or restrictive rights may negatively influence what type of investors look at the next round or even scare some off.  You could even cause the founder to find his exit earlier than initially planned.  All of this can impact the future health of the company before it even begins the fact being that such a low percentage of start-ups become successful long-term and those that do typically will pay for those that do not.  Most of the time what you negotiate in the early rounds of investing will not greatly impact your successes, the risk is greater that it will have a negative effect.

In David Amis’s interview of successful Angel and Harvard Business School Professor, Bill Sahlman, it is pointed out that “whether you have referred stock or anything doesn’t matter because there’s not much value left of the company anyway.”   The difference of money you are protecting yourself from losing is minute compared to the risk you take restricting the success of the company.  Sahlman points out how Venture Capitalist John Doerr was “roundly criticized when he put money into Amazon at a $60m pre-money valuation” and “in the end the company achieved a $30bn market cap 2 years later.  So, whether he’d paid 60, 70, 55, or whether he’d used participating preferred, non-participating preferred – it didn’t matter.”  Many angels believe that part of your intent as an early investor is to help the company position itself for future success. 

One of the most interesting parts of the book is the Financial Chronology of Amazon.com from 1994-1999.  Taken from Mark van Osnabrugge’s book Angel Investing: Matching Start-up Funds With Start-up Companies, the graph shows at conception how Jeff Bezos founded the company with $10,000 of his own money and borrowed $44,000.  Amazing in of itself, the graph shows the price per share of Amazon increasing from $.001 to $52.11 in less than 4 years.  In detailing the investment rounds we get a look into the valuation growth of the company with each round of investment.  If only our companies performed this way!  

As for my business, I don’t think I will ever experience rounds of investment.  I am strategizing in hopes to find a way to entice just one.  However, the structure terms and options were very educational for me and most certainly something that I would consider in the structure when an investor does come along. 

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Valuation – Winning Angels

“In 1978, angel investor Richard Kramlich invested $22,500 of seed capital into Apple Computer at a pre-money valuation of around $10m.  The investment grew in value to over $5m, which was 222 times his investment” (Amis and Stevenson, p173).  A multiplier of 222 times his investment was quite some value.  Given a crystal ball at the time of investment certainly the evaluation of Apple would have been much higher and Kramlich’s return much lower.  However, there is no crystal ball, but angel investors are certainly making every effort to peek into what the future may hold so they can make an investment decision.  The Valuing section of Winning Angels; the 7 fundamentals of early stage investing reviews 12 varying methods that angels may use to value a company.  There seems to be more methods but these 12 certainly cover a vast difference of thought and strategies that a professional angel may go though. 

I was asked to invest and assist in the purchase of a daycare business once as a friend of mine who had some capital from a family member to purchase the business but was going to be a little short.  They were inexperienced in the financial side of the business and needed some more capital.  They certainly overestimated my business abilities, but I jumped at the opportunity.  We began the business plan, I met with the selling owner, reviewed the previous 5 years of tax returns and financials, and valued the business the best I could give using my layman’s ability considering the company’s assets, current market conditions to evaluate growth potential as well as intangibles such as the current leadership, associates, strategic placement of business compared to competitors, etc.  Our market is very underserved with this type of business and this company was already considered a market leader.  I was able to recognize the overall value of the company was a little limiting, but it would provide some annual ROI so I was excited.  I also recognized that as the conversations grew more serious, I would need to incorporate some more knowledgeable input so a visit to a lawyer and CPA was planned.  I am certain the still-current owner felt her market leading company had selling value and she could just re-open another one taking the current families and quite possibly some workers.  We were aware of that and  after our valuation, we were still well short of the current asking price and the deal fizzled out.   

As an example of how each of the 12 methods would result in a different valuation, the authors applied each of them to a real-life investment scenario of David Amis’s when he invested in an October 1999 angel round of a company called Interlate.  I found it very interesting the vast differences in the valuation that each method equated to.  The Multiplier method resulted in a $63m valuations with the $5m Limit method equating to $2m.  The others had varying results in between.  It’s safe to say that valuing a company is not a science.  However, the levels of strategic thought that is used by angels are non-the-less high level.  The angel must use other intangibles of the deal along with their own personal strategic thoughts to derive if the deal will result in their targeted results.  I do believe that which method an angel chooses would be influenced by their overall intentions when evaluating the opportunity.  I also found it very interesting that Amis and Stevenson covered the influence of greed at the end of the valuing section.  I would include ego along with greed as a main reason that a deal may result in being over-valued.  Anytime money is included greed will influence our strategy as well as the others, including the founders or members of the company itself.  It also can play a serious role later in the life of the investment when other rounds of investing come to play.  I also include ego as people don’t want to be wrong.  One can also derive to the conclusion that ego certainly would have a stance with the current owners or founders as greed and ego work together to influence what they may feel their company is worth. 

In my company, I am planning of including a start-up advisor as there are a multitude of aging builders in our area. As relationships equate to real dollars in my business, I clearly see the value.  I find it very interesting and helpful that the method of a “Start-up Advisor” was included.  This would also be very helpful as we implement our land strategy into the company after a couple of years.  It is possible that the advisor may also play a role in the investment of that land strategy.  As we begin to build, and I continue my career the advisor may be more hands on but I see that person changing when my business becomes my full time career. 

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Evaluating – WCU ENT640 Entrepreneurial Feasibility Analysis.

“In both entrepreneurship and angel investing, there is nothing like doing it. Nothing.” (Amis and Stephenson, p. 75.)  This implies that when evaluating your opportunities, your knowledge and ability to determine a good deal will increase with your experience of taking the steps of investing.  I think a similar statement can be made about being an entrepreneur.  There is no end to planning and evaluating, we can direct as much time as we want to this.  For may of us, and I mean me, a process of analyzing anything can be a paralyzing event that causes us not to act.  The best part of the “Winning Angels”, is that it provides a detailed framework in all its 7 fundamentals.  The path of evaluating and decision making laid given to us in much detail from Amis and Stephenson can be used both by us as entrepreneurs as well as the Angel Investors that it was meant for.  Although, Amis and Stephenson preface the decision-making framework with stating “Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from making bad judgements,” the evaluating process they lay out can help many of us come to a decision. 

Start-up Entrepreneurs and Angel Investors seem to have a similar restraint in capital, time, and resources such as social capital.  We may not have the luxury of making a “bad judgement” for the sake of gaining experience.  Limited capital coupled with a low level of social expertise to rely upon restricts us from a wrong decision.  However, Amis and Stephenson separates success or failure from the evaluation process.  They state that a huge win with a single 1990’s internet start-up does not prove that the investor knows anything about early-stage startups, as well as the inverse if you were to lose 10 times on an investment you may also not know anything.  The process helps but experience in deal making is what give you the insight to deal making. 

This biggest takeaway for me in the Evaluating section is how to assess and manage risk.  Angel Randy Komisar (Amis and Stephenson, 2001, p. 105) states that “I go in and invest my time to remove the risk that I know how to remove.  And then I pass it on the operating guys to take out the next level of risk.”  The book moves on to examine different types of risk but to me the real lesson is the importance of Social Capital to involve other Angels with different backgrounds and expertise as well as put together teams that work cohesively together for a broader experience.   

The Harvard Framework is one of the focal points of this fundamental.  Amis and Stephenson give the reading Angels a guidepost to connect, define, and evaluate their opportunities.  The Harvard Framework originally developed by the Author Howard Stephenson in Harvard Business School and since has been further developed to be utilized in many other facets of business.  The framework focuses of four elements, People, Business Opportunity, Deal, and Context.  A good deal would be one that there is a relevant level of each of the four elements and they work cohesively together to create the opportunity for success.  The absence of one of the elements would lead to a bad deal and opportunity for failure.  The way they interact with one another being the crucial measurement for the opportunity for success, the Context of the deal being the larger, macro environment the deal resides with the other three elements of the deal being a recipe for the success.

Again, this fundamental provides the guideline and boundaries for an Angel to connect, define, and evaluate their deals.  Giving definition to critical points that will indicate to them if a deal is correct for them as well as helping the Angel to create an overall strategy and mission.  All the while, we are given the opportunity to learn from the viewpoint of the Angel Investor. 

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Sourcing -“Winning Angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing”.

Winning Angels: The 7 fundamentals of early stage investing ...

As Entrepreneurs we are all well informed as to how difficult it can be to find capital for our business when needed.  Family and friends may be a touchy subject and injects an uncomfortable situation and may be a line we are not willing to cross.  Business loans are certainly an option but what if we need more capital than we qualify for, or our business does not meet all parameters?  We hear a lot about Angel Investors, but what and where are they and do I have an enticing or large enough business to attract one?  I certainly have a lot of questions as I look to understand the world of Angel Investing, it is something that I personally do not know much about.  I will look to learn about that world over the next 7 weeks as I review the book “Winning Angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing” by David Amis and Howard Stevenson for my WCU Entrepreneurial Feasibility Analysis Class. 

              The book is written as a guide for Angel Investors to organize their business, develop a targeted result, as well as establish an investing strategy that will maximize their efforts.  Amis and Stevenson provide a very detailed outline for an Angel Investor of every size and type.  The book allows an Angel to self-evaluate what they may want from their business through detailed step-by-step actions as well as real-life chronicles of what has worked well for other Angels. 

              The first “fundamental” the book discusses is sourcing, as in how an Angel finds and sorts their potential investments.  The authors have divided sourcing activities into four groups of activities that will give Angels focus to what prospecting deals they will want to make. The four activity groups are:

  • Preparation Activities
  • Networking Activities
  • Visibility Activities
  • Focus Activities  

As the book begins with challenging the investor to be clear as to how much time and money they want to put into the endeavor. These four activity groups help the Angel to source a consistent flow of investment opportunities to come their way.  Depending on how many deals they decide to do and/or what types of opportunities they are searching for, these activities will help them to attract potential deals.  The four Activity Groups are sub categorized into 18 activities that the Angel can perform with some sort of measurable response.  Amis and Stevenson go as far as to detail the time investment as well as how many deals that an Angel should expect to receive from the action. 

Reading the book, I quickly can see how these activities are many of the same actions that we take as entrepreneurs ourselves.  Network for social capital, one pager vs. Elevator Speech, engage in speaking opportunities, etc.  We are all performing actions for a measurable positive response to our business. 

Amis and Stephenson review the correlation between Quality and Quantity and how different combinations of each will most likely differ between all Angel Investors.  They mention how Angels will need to consider each separate issue to manage (pg. 56).  They point out that performing the Networking and Visibility Activities will result in increased deal flow there will certainly be some differing results based on who the Angel is as well as their circumstances.  Example being a “famous” Angel will have and easier time sourcing deals than an “anonymous” Angel and their efforts to achieve the same deal flow may differ vastly.  As for the consideration of quality, an Angel must decide if they are going for the “Shotgun” or “rifle” approach to sourcing deals.  Amis and Stephenson point out that newer less experienced Angels are more likely to take the “shotgun” approach where more tenured Angels tend to protect their time and focus on more specific types and measurables when they are looking for deals.  Each Angel must find the right combination Quality and Quantity as both efforts may result in similar deals, with the “shotgun” approach most likely putting forth the most effort. 

In the residential construction industry Angel Investors are more common than one may think.  As all builders will have a relationship with multiple lending institutions, the terms of mortgage lending may not provide the same flexibility as an Angel Investor.  The equity needed, as well as the repayment terms for a mortgage can be of a hinderance for a builder.  Many times, for a builder to grow or take advantages of opportunities they will need more flexible lending terms.  An Angel Investor may make the most sense as they will look for a cut of the profits for funding all or most of the upfront equity needed to start a project. Most of the time an Angel Investor that is interested in lending into the real estate world will either have a background or a current career in the business.   

When a builder is faced with an opportunity that will require more equity and cash flow throughout the life of the project, Angel Investors may just be the only way to go.  A typical mortgage lender may want a large sum down as well as a repayment structure that pays them back at a faster rate than the positive cash flow for a vast portion of the timeframe.  Many times, builders and developers are faced with only about the last 10% of the project being of positive cash flow for themselves, this can be a large problem for the 90% of the project.  At a certain growth metric of my business I will actively look and promote a profitable position for an Angel Investor.  Thus, reading “Winning Angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing” by David Amis and Howard Stevenson will be an important lesson into the viewpoint of many Angels.     

Reference:

Amis, D., & Stevenson, H. H. (2001). Winning angels: the seven fundamentals of early-stage investing. London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

Outdoor Advertising – Greatest Marketing Campaigns – WCU ENT610

BBC – Dracula Billboard   

Ad Link – https://www.creativebloq.com/design/billboard-advertising-1131681

Company – BBC

Company website – WWW.BBC.COM

The English billboard was for the New Year’s Day release of BBC’s new series, Dracula.  The billboard was filled on the left side with strategically placed Stakes that are known in folklore to be one of the few ways to kill a Vampire.  Each evening as darkness arrived a light that shined on the billboard caused the shadows of each stake to form into a silhouette of a vampire, Dracula himself.  The unique and creative effort in the ad caused heightened attention and conversation that made the expense well worth the cost.    

Ad Objectives – The ad looked to bring awareness to the new Dracula television series and did so even beyond the billboard itself through word of mouth, social media, and other television exposure that the creative nature of the ad created. 

Target Market – Television watchers and anyone interested in horror film. 

Call to Action – The ad caused many to come back in darkness to see the differences in the ad.  No direct call to action but I am curious to know if the expected outcome of the ad was planned by the advertisers. 

Value Proposition – The buzz and curiosity around the ad gave some the indication that the show itself would have similar stimulation.  Watch the show and you may see something unexpected.

 

Orphea – Bug Trap Billboard

Ad Link – https://youtu.be/xgvXZsgr9IQ

Company – Orphea

Company website – https://orphea.it/en/products/orphea-insect-repellents/

Italian bug repellant company Orphea created a billboard that doubled as a bug trap.  The Billboard had a picture of a big bug can on one side of a mostly blank canvas.  The company had painted a transparent glue in the shape of the spray pattern coming from the can.  Over a timeline bugs began to stick and die on the glue and forming a shaded area of the spray.  The company reports they killed more than 230,000 insects.

Ad Objectives – The creative ad was meant to be a significant comparison to Orphea’s repellant capabilities.  The artistic nature of the ad surely was also meant to create some buzz around the company itself.

Target Market – Dependent on location as well as timing of the ad.  The company probably utilized some marketing data to make decision for Ad.

Call to Action – As ad was to make a statement there is no true call to action. 

Value Proposition – Buy Orphea insect repellant and receive huge results. 

TNT – We Know Drama

Ad Link – https://youtu.be/316AzLYfAzw

Company – TNT

Company website – www.tntdrama.com

Was TNT’s effort to introduce Belgium was it a commercial, a stunt, or a skit? Either way it was one of the more creative and successful campaigns around.  Placing a Big stand with a bright red button in the middle of a Belgium Square daring people to push the button, TNT really brought the drama.  Once the button was pushed a series of chaotic scenes play out around those people in the square.  The randomness of the scenes builds up to a banner falling from a building introducing TNT.  The campaign resulted in over 8 million YouTube Views and 205,000 facebook shares. 

Ad Objectives – The commercial stunt was an effort to introduce TNT into a new market.  The Chaos was to build the tag line for TNT…We Know Drama.    

Target Market – The Belgium Country television watchers. 

Call to Action –   Watch the TNT network.  They know drama and the network will be as exciting as this stunt.

Value Proposition – Watch the TNT network and you will be entertained. 

Tyrolit – Rusting Billboard

Ad Link – https://www.adsoftheworld.com/media/outdoor/tyrolit_the_iconic_rust_billboard

Company – Tyrolit

Company website – www.tyrolit.com

The Austrian knife company Tyrolit installed what seemed to be a very bland billboard that just had the company name in the middle on a white backed canvas.  However, over the next 30 days the billboard began to quickly rust but left the outline of a knife baring the companies name.  The tag line MAKELLOS. FÜR IMMER also appeared that translates to FLAWLESS. FOREVER. 

Ad Objectives – The billboard ad was meant to bring awareness to the quality of the Tyrolit products. 

Target Market – The billboard was installed in Vienna’s First District to maximize exposure to various demographics and tourist. 

Call to Action – Buy Tyrolit Knives as they will not rust and be flawless forever. 

Value Proposition –  Tyrolit has high quality products. 

South of the Border

Ad Link – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:South_of_the_Border_billboards

Company – South of the border

Company website – www.sobpedro.com

Anyone who ever has driven down I-95 into South Carolina knows Pedro and South of the Border all to well.  As you come upon the state line and cross into South Carolina you will pass a sea of signs and advertising delight.  There are more than 175 signs. Mostly on I-95 but are all through the state stretching from all boarders of Georgia to North Carolina on all highways and interstates.  The signs as well as the location itself is arguably tacky but that is part of the personality of the site. 

Ad Objectives – To loudly bring awareness to the South of the Boarder area.

Target Market – People of all ages and demographics traveling through South Carolina. 

Call to Action – All signs and billboards urge travelers to stop along their travels. 

Value Proposition – Many but mostly how Pedro and the South of the Border will be a great place to stop along your travels and it will be full of excitement. 

Magazine – Greatest Marketing Campaigns – WCU ENT610

Ikea – Pee Ad  

Ad Link – http://www.adweek.com/creativity/ikea-wants-you-to-pee-on-this-ad-if-youre-pregnant-it-will-give-you-a-discount-on-a-crib/

Company – Ikea

Company website -www.ikea.com

              This 2017 Ikea ad promotes and urges you to urinate on the ad.  Yes, urinate on it!  The ad header reads “Peeing on this ad may change your life.”  The ad is of a crib for sale as well as a designated area on the bottom that doubles as a pregnancy test.  If the participating woman is pregnant then a discount will appear on a new crib. 

Ad Objectives – The ad looks to reach out to women who may be pregnant and shopping for a baby crib and it utilizes a bit of shockvertising to capture the attention of all readers.

Target Market – The ad is targeting pregnant women and expecting parents.   

Call to Action – Pee on the ad and if pregnant then a discount will appear. 

Value Proposition –  If you are pregnant you can receive a discount off a crib. 

Pedigree – A Dog Makes Your Life Happier. Adopt

Ad Link – https://www.adsoftheworld.com/media/outdoor/pedigree_dog_3

Company – Pedigree

Company website – www.pedigree.com

              The ad takes a series of pictures that at first glance look gloomy and sad and then copy the ad with a dog inserted in the picture.  With the dog inserted the mood of the picture’s changes from gloom to happiness.  How we view the people in each setting changes with the addition of the dog, we now see them as happy. 

Ad Objectives – The ad drives the point that dogs make our lives happier as well as support pet adoption.  By driving pet ownership and adoption Pedigree builds positive brand recognition. 

Target Market – People who may be looking to add a dog in their lives as well as someone who may be looking to add happiness. 

Call to Action – Adopt a dog.

Value Proposition – Adopting/Getting a dog will bring happiness to your life. 

Toyota – Curve

Ad Link – https://www.adsoftheworld.com/media/print/toyota_curve

Company – Toyota

Company website – www.toyota.com

              This Peruvian ad is set with a mountain range backdrop with a sharp curve turning sharply behind a mountain.  The road is set on the side of a mountain with a barrier protecting cars from falling off the steep mountainside.  The barrier is busted through with tire tracks and debris spread across the road.  At first glance you may think a vehicle missed the curve and fell to their demise on the mountainside, but upon second glance your eyes catch that the barrier is busted inward toward the road and then you realize that an off-road vehicle must have driven up the mountainside and onto the road.  The ad has no words but takes your mind through a subtle but surprising double take.   

Ad Objectives – To build rand awareness of the off-road capabilities of many of the Toyota vehicles.

Target Market – The Peruvian vehicle shopper that may have a need or desire for off-road vehicle.   

Call to Action – No true call to action.

Value Proposition – If you purchase a Toyota Off-road vehicle you will have great off-roading capabilities. 

Volkswagen: Resale Value

Ad Link – https://www.adsoftheworld.com/media/print/volkswagen_resale_value

Company – Volkswagen

Company website – www.vw.com

              This Volkswagen ad was released in Ireland in 2012.  The ad has a centered Volkswagen emblem with a dotted cut-out line around it with scissors implying the cut-out.  Below, the ad reads “How to increase your cars resale value.”  The ad risk going above some people’s heads, but it is stating that if you cut out their emblem and place it on your car then you will in turn increase your car’s resale value. 

Ad Objectives – To imply that Volkswagen has superior resale value compared to other vehicles. 

Target Market – Non-Volkswagen owners that may be shopping for new car. 

Call to Action – The only call to action would be to purchase a Volkswagen.  The satirical call to action would be to cut out the emblem and place on your car.

Value Proposition –  Purchase a Volkswagen as it holds greater resale value against other brands. 

McDonalds – Wake up with McCafé

Ad Link – https://www.adsoftheworld.com/media/print/mccafe_wake_up_with_mccafe

Company – McDonald’s  

Company website – www.mcdonalds.com

              The ad has a artistically placed cup of coffee on a napkin that is in the shape of an eye.  The napkin is white and the coffee cup blue.  As the coffee in the cup mimics the pupil, the cup being a blue eye color and the white napkin defines the shape that looks like a wide-open eye.  The tag line “Wake up with McCafe,” is in the bottom left.    

Ad Objectives – The ad looks to bring brand recognition to the McCafe Coffee’s from McDonalds and their quality.

Target Market – McDonalds customers as well as anyone that would be looking for a cup of coffee in the morning. 

Call to Action – Buy McDonalds McCafe coffee in the mornings to “wake up.”

Value Proposition – Drink McCafe Coffees in the morning and you will be wide awake. 

Newspaper Ads – Greatest Marketing Campaigns – WCU ENT610

HBO – GAME OF THRONES 2013

Company – HBO

Company website – www.hbo.com

                HBO’s two-page ad that ran in The New York Times utilizes print shading to replicate a shadow of a Dragon flying overhead.  The shadow looks real enough to impact some emotion from the reader even though they may be inside, or sub consciously know there would be no dragon in the sky’s above them.  However, the most avid GOT watchers who are deeply involved in the show may almost want to believe there could be.  The ad announces the beginning of Season 3 of the popular show in the bottom right of the ad with the shadow disrupting the faux new stories above. 

Ad Objectives – Announcing new season of Game of Thrones. 

Target Market – Newspaper Demographic typically ages 40 and over.  Average Household income above 75k and higher education level as readers in New York Times.

Call to Action – Brand add to announce new Season. 

Value Proposition – As the dragon is inked into the page and causing one to possibly question their senses the value would be to not miss something exciting.  In this case, the upcoming new season. 

Porsche – Honestly Now

Company – Porsche

Company website – https://www.porsche.com/usa/

                The Ad provokes nostalgia of our youth when we possible dreamed of what kind of car we would have when we were older.  The ad asks… “Honestly now” as it ask if you ever dreamed about a Mitsubishi or a Nissan, two of the more affordable 2 door sports coups.  The ad seems to target the Mitsubishi and Nissan shoppers with the point that Porsche is making their cars more affordable.  The ad leaves the reader with a challenging statement “we know how many decades you’ve waited.”    

Ad Objectives – The ad seeks to evoke memories of our childhood when we may have dreamed of owning a Porsche.  The ad drives urgency with how long you have wanted one and the new price points.  

Target Market – Career Male, typically over 30.  Possibly single or without children with household income of over 75k.

Call to Action – If shopping for a sports coup, consider the Porsche over the Mitsubishi or Nissan cars of similar style which may be less expensive. 

Value Proposition – “And we’re now making it very affordable”  giving the reader the idea they may be able to afford a Porsche over a Mitsubishi or Nissan sports coupe. 

Stella Artois – Coupon 2007

Ad Link – https://aef.com/ad-campaigns/1-25/

Company – Stella Artois

Company website –www.stellaartois.com

                The ad mimics a coupon for the Stella Artois beer, but instead of a discount the bearer of the coupon will pay $1.25 extra for the drink.  The coupon has a tag line in the bottom left stating “Reassuringly Expensive.”  The ad plays on both the drink as a status increasing beer as well as the quality as it would be worth more money than whatever the cost may be at the serving location.     

Ad Objectives – To firm up the view that the beer is already an expensive beer that is enjoyed by many as a drink that would up their status with either money or their exquisite taste.

Target Market – Beer drinkers who enjoy premium beers or status drinkers. 

Call to Action – Unstated but tells people to drink Stella Artois because its expensive.

Value Proposition – Stella Artois is expensive and worth more than whatever amount you would pay for it. 

Stihl – “Had enough bad news?”

The ad campaign is a series of newspaper ads where Stihl products are working and being utilized on the faux content of a newspaper page.  A banner on the bottom of the main ad provides a statement about the product that is highlighted in the ad.  The faux content seems to be a story of the product and the Stihl company as well.  A chainsaw seemingly cuts down columns of the content, a grass trimmer edges out the words, and a blower blows the letters and words toward one area of the page.      

Ad Objectives – Each banner ad below the product makes sure to promote the quality of the product as both commercial as well as good for the homeowner. 

Target Market – The professional who may utilize these products everyday as well as homeowners who want a professional quality product for their uses. 

Call to Action – Purchase Stihl if you are a professional or homeowner. 

Value Proposition –  Solidifying and framing Stihl as the premier product and asking for you to purchase based on their professional quality.   

Carulla Knives Campaign – 2016

Company –  Carulla

Company website – www.carulla.com

                This ad from Columbia is a series of newspaper ads that utilize the columns in the classified section of a newspaper that tellingly turned the spacing in between the columns into a highly effective ad in almost seemingly 3D way.  The series of ads use fish and various vegetables as they appear sliced with the vertical newspaper columns.  Using multiple variations of the same ad gives another impression to the reader and capturers their attention again.          

Ad Objectives – The ad is looking to build market awareness for their brand in a creative way as well as promote the accuracy of their product.

Target Market – Families that shop the Carulla brand and fit the demographics of the newspaper.

Call to Action – No true call to action.  Ad is to build brand awareness. 

Value Proposition –  Carulla brand knives cut very accurately.