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Banana Branding

Posted in: Uncategorized ♦ Thursday, October 14th, 2010, 1:59 pm ♦ No Comments
Banana Branding

This morning while grabbing for my breakfast, I came face to face with a branding success story. My Chiquita Banana had an advertisement in its iconic blue sticker. The banana company’s brand marker—that ubiquitous blue oval—has moved beyond a corporate logo and into the realm of… advertising space.

A long time ago, the Chiquita people wanted to sell more bananas. They created a brand, which consisted of a tropical spokeswoman and a royal blue shield logo. They stuck that shield on every bunch of bananas they sold. Soon, that blue oval became synonymous for “banana.”  Or, more specifically, “high quality banana,” and “the best choice in bananas.”

Flash forward to today. Chiquita is tied as the number one brand of bananas (Dole sells about the name number worldwide). The Chiquita brand is so much a part of our culture that they can do crazy things with it. Take, for example, the “cool” sticker campaign.

In addition to changing the sticker for its own purposes, Chiquita so confident of its brand identity that the company is pawning off the sticker space to other companies. Organizations that want to capture the attention of the banana-eating audience can now buy space on a banana.

In my case, the bunch I took home from the Safeway had an ad for a new video game for the Wii. My kids were happy to explain the game to me, and I realized that was the point. Here was a family talking about a product, giving it some thought and attention, the first step that someone makes in potentially becoming a customer.

These days, we’ve gone way beyond the advertising industry I cut my teeth in. Back then, we had three media venues: print, TV and radio. Today, print, TV, and radio are considered overly expensive and not targeted enough. Advertisers are looking to grab the thoughts and minds of people online, in their phones, on their bananas.

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