The Bigger the Risk, The Bigger the Reward


Risk is a very familiar word to those in the marketing field. Just how far are marketers willing to go to stand apart from their competitors and stay ahead in the game? Take a look at two marketers who risk everything to win big. Both of these marketers have shown the world that they have what it takes to battle through the obstacles, take huge risks, and come out on top.

Russell Weiner, Chief Marketing Officer at Domino’s Pizza, showed the world that admitting to the negatives of your product can lead to a positive reaction. In 2009, an employee of Domino’s posted a video of themselves doing revolting things to Domino’s pizza on YouTube. The occurrence showed the power of social media, which quickly unraveled a brand, and gave consumers one more reason to get their pizza elsewhere. Weiner’s response was daring: a campaign that would begin with consumers, in vivid detail, describing how bad the pizza was and then to introduce the reformulated version. “We had to be open, honest and transparent,” states Weiner. “People said our pizza wasn’t good enough, so we changed everything about it.” His bold and risk-taking tactics paid off as Domino’s sales in the first quarter soared 14.3 percent. By admitting to the downfalls of Domino’s pizza in a marketing campaign, Weiner won back the trust and loyalty of its customers, while improving its product is still worthwhile. Russell Weiner shown himself to be a knight in shining armor in saving Domino’s brand, and thus has joined a legend of esteemed marketers.

James Moorhead did not only double the sales of Old Spice body wash within a six month period, but the 31-year-old brand manager for Proctor & Gamble’s Old Spice was also named Adweek Media’s “Marketer of the Year.” Moorhead is awarded for his supervision of the newly created Old Spice ads featuring Isaiah Mustafa, a formal NFL player, who wears only a towel and insists that his female viewers compare their boyfriends and husbands to him. Moorhead became a loyalist of the brand in three years of working as brand manager for Old Spice. If you truly believe in the value of your brand, likes Moorhead does, you will work harder to market it. Moorhead was a big believer in moving the brand into the social media spotlight by using YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook. This was a huge success and contributed to the brand popularity. Jason Bagley, one of the creative directors on the commercial advertisement project said, “You can probably imagine the type of faith and courage it takes for a large corporation to allow you the freedom to do all this.” Moorhead pulled off a near-perfect campaign, and showed us that a mixture of creativity, risk, and valor, can create great success.

These two marketers laid it all on the line to win over their consumers. They took big risks, and with that came reward. As their brands continue to flourish, the marketing world is left in awe of the task they accomplished. It’s marketers like Weiner and Moorhead who we learn from. They teach us that you can’t let others deter you from taking risks, especially when it may even be yourself who is standing in the way. Sometimes you just have to believe in your ideas, take a chance, and have a little faith!

This post was written by Manoel Reichel (@manoelthomas) and edited by Jens Heig (@JensRHeig) and Kelsey Darnall (@KelseyJDarnall).


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About The New Take - University of Minnesota

Fresh new thoughts from writers in the University of Minnesota's PRSSA chapter.

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