What San Francisco-based agency Odopod calls utility marketing, I call branding applications. To me, there are only two forms of persuasive content — branded (narrative) content and branding (utiltiy) applications.
What I love about this excerpt is how the author connects the branding app/utility to the brand promise. The brand becomes an experience through interaction. The metaphor I’ve long liked to use is “The propaganda of the deed” attributed to Mikhail Bakunin but actually written by another 19th century anarchist.
“Here are a few examples of utility marketing that do just that.
1. The Snow Report by The North FaceAn iPhone application that allows users to select their favorite ski/snow resorts and receive real-time snow and weather conditions along with trail maps, directions and site links.
Supports the brand promise: Being prepared to enjoy the outdoors.
2. SitOrSquat sponsored by Charmin.The SitOrSquat Website and mobile application allows users to find a public toilet anywhere in the world – plus add and rate bathrooms that they find.
Supports the brand promise: An enjoyable bathroom experience.
3. HP’s print function for MySpace.HP is developing a “click to print” function for MySpace enabling users to turn their library of pictures into tangible photos, photo books, postcards and posters.
Supports the brand promise: Making printing easy.
4. Samsung Mobile Charging Station.Samsung Mobile have installed charging stations many US airports. The stations include outlets and a handy shelf where travelers can rest their devices.
Supports the brand promise: Empowering technology on the go.
5. Driving Guides from Michelin.Michelin guidebooks evaluate and recommend restaurants on a range of criteria across Europe, the US and Asia. They’ve recently launched a restaurant application for the iPhone.
Supports the brand promise: A better way to travel.”