INTRODUCTION
PARASITE
MARKETING
BUSINESS
PLAN
AD / COMIX ARCHIVE
CORPORATE
PRESENTATIONS
GOOD VALUE
SEALS
MERCHANDISER'S
RESOURCES

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BUDDY
This site independently created and maintained by Ted Dewan
PARASITE MARKETING
BUDDY'S TM GOOD VALUE TM WAY
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INTRODUCTION: THE BUDDY WAY

Buddy
is a brand built up without any expenditure of any money by way of a freely distributed comic strip, a grassroots network of freely licensed merchandisers, and media interest in the unique "free use" method of brand-building Buddy.
  • Buddy stands for something that's always in demand, and that's GOOD VALUE.

  • This gives Buddy his advantage over all other global brands: he can apply to virtually any kind of merchandise, making the merchandise define GOOD VALUE, and GOOD VALUE defining the merchandise.

  • However, Buddy will make no products of any kind. Would-be merchandisers pay no licence fee to use the Buddy image, and therefore widespread recognition of Buddy is virtually guaranteed.

  • Publication of the Buddy comic strip will further ensure the widespread recognition of his meaning, GOOD VALUE.

  • Once this meaning is established, Buddy The Value DogTM will "own" the meaning of the phrase GOOD VALUE in people's minds.

  • Over the course of the brand-building phase of the business plan, the true meaning of the phrase GOOD VALUE will become manifest. It could become corrupted, or it could take on an ironic twist; only time will tell.
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FREE BRAND BUILDING: BEYOND THE FIRST RULE OF MARKETING

After years of a rule-breaking business climate, the "rule" that it takes pots of money to build a brand is one of the last rules left to break. Conventional wisdom dictates that any marketing program needs a product, and lots of money behind it.
  • But the value of Buddy The Value DogTM grows continuously with absolutely no effort at all. Absolutely no money is spent on building the Buddy brand, other than the small amount of time spent maintaining the website and drawing the comic strips.

  • The novelty of the free brand building concept is expected to attract press attention. Thus, free publicity will be given to the entire Buddy The Value DogTM branding phenomenon and thus add to the value of the brand.

  • This media exposure is paid for by advertisers of other brands and ultimately the media-consuming public. Media interest in the brand-building process will of course be illustrated in the comic strip.

  • As the media loves to reflect upon itself, it is unlikely they will ignore the freely distributed strip, thus assuring plenty of free advertising.

  • Buddy The Value DogTM will manufacture nothing nor receive any payment from the use of the Buddy The Value DogTM brand.

  • The comic strip will be billed as an "advertisement" in a seemingly ironic fashion, but will, of course, be just that, albeit a free one.
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BUDDY'S RIVAL: CHIP, THE QUALITY SQUIRREL
Most marketeers will be aware of the axiom that the leading brand is always the brand name that came along first in its category, followed by a number of later brands taking second place. The marketing plan of the brand leader has to adjust now and then to the onslaughts made by the second brand, even though the second brand is unlikely to conquer first place.

As Buddy The Value DogTM is the first brand in its category, it seemed logical to also introduce the second brand, in this case, Chip The Quality SquirrelTM. Chip The Quality SquirrelTM will always remain in second place, and the dynamic between Buddy The Value DogTM and Chip The Quality SquirrelTM will be one of the main narrative devices used in the comic strip. This will have the effect of raising the profile of Buddy The Value DogTM to an even greater height.

Duality in the relationship will center around the usual marketing themes, such as youth market vs old market, the "real" thing vs. the "cooler" thing, men vs. women, etc

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MEANING: "GOOD VALUE" V "FINE QUALITY"
"Fast Food" belongs to McDonalds. "Cola" belongs to Coke. "Sports" belongs to Nike. These concepts are fairly limited and have become "owned" at staggering expense and a great deal of waste, as none of the products used to deliver the concepts are of any real use whatsoever. The thinking behind building the Buddy The Value DogTM and Chip The Quality SquirrelTM brands is to "own" two broad concepts without actually having to produce any wasteful products and spend vast amounts of money.

At the moment, neither of the terms GOOD VALUE nor FINE QUALITY on their own really mean anything specific. But over time, both Buddy The Value DogTM and Chip The Quality SquirrelTM will gradually assume ownership of these useful and universal concepts.

In time, Buddy The Value DogTM will become synonymous with the term GOOD VALUE. The phrase is reassuringly positive and safe, and yet it is flexible enough to mean just about anything. Buddy The Value DogTMwill have little control over the exact meaning of the phrase, as the whole marketing strategy is to allow GOOD VALUE to be defined by the manufacturers of licensed Buddy The Value DogTM merchandise. If Buddy The Value DogTM merchandise are always good products, then GOOD VALUE will come to mean good products. If Buddy The Value DogTM merchandise is always cheap crap, then GOOD VALUE will come to mean cheap crap. The likely scenario is that GOOD VALUE will mean a vague mixture of the two, and so GOOD VALUE will mean slightly different things to different consumers depending on which products they come into contact with or read about. This does not present a problem, so long as the phrase GOOD VALUE is "owned" in people's mind by Buddy The Value DogTM.

Ultimately, these concepts can be applied to any group of multibrands (much like General Motors' different brands of cars). Although the characters of Buddy The Value DogTM and Chip The Quality SquirrelTM are seemingly innocuous, they are in fact quite powerful concept ownership devices.

Other modern brands are usually represented by typefaces or abstract shapes, even vague photographic styles and attitudes, Buddy The Value DogTM and Chip The Quality SquirrelTMhave personalities and the potential to have their exploits as ever-growing brands made amusing and engaging. Whereas Mickey Mouse means Disney (which means "magic", a conveniently broad term), Mickey's adventures rarely involve magic with the exception of The Sorcerer's Apprentice (thus the decision of Disney to use him in his Apprentice outfit rather than his old clothes). As to why Mickey, a bland and therefore potentially useful branding character, has not been in a great many magical stories and features is a mystery. But Buddy The Value DogTM will always deliver GOOD VALUE.