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Hacking marketing budgets

Could brand ideas be the answer to the marketing budget puzzle.
(Sorry, I promised myself this wouldn't be a marketing blog but it is my day job and this felt like an interesting recession hack for marketers).
Seems to me, in 2009 particularly, there are a lot of brands out there that are not getting the marketing funding they need to be successful. Many of these brands are already well known and already have a loyal customer base. For completely different reasons (namely the spontaneous combustion of the finance industry) it is much harder for companies to borrow money to make an investment in a brand that has growth potential. As a result, many good brands face an unsupported year just when there is a huge opportunity to out invest the competitors to gain significant market advantage.

On the other side of the fence a lot of private equity, angel and VC investors want to play conservatively with their money - staying away from new, unproven business models - yet their other investment choices offer poor and equally uncertain returns.

So, what if we brought these two parties together. Broker marketing investment $ from private equity in return for a cut of the incremental business revenue generated by the brand. Brands get the marketing budget they need (as long as the plan delivers ROI) and the investors get an investment that is grounded in a proven business model from a brand that is already a known entity.

So, how could it work?

1) Create and publish a list of all the brands that will not be funded this year. (The endangered brand list?). The brands with most potential could then be approached to see if they want to participate...Why wouldn't they?
2) Invite the creative communities - either discreetly within agency network or on an open co-creation platform - to submit brand ideas on the promise that any brand ideas that is used will be rewarded with a % of the revenue generated
3) Package the best of these ideas and pitch them to private equity investors and the brands. All the brands have to bring to the table is a willingness to cede marketing control to the investment partners.

As I think about it, these three stages could be executed in varying order depending on what you have easiest access to, ideas, funding, brands.

We should create an identifiable logo that features on all products supported by this process. Negotiate retail and consumer support in advance. There's entertainment content in here somewhere too - Dragons Den for brand ideas.

Anyone want to play?

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