NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Procter & Gamble Co. became the first corporate inductee to the American Advertising Federation Hall of Fame on March 25, and while it's a big honor, it could be seen as a mixed blessing. After all, the other inductees are retired, and many have been honored posthumously, while P&G still considers itself very much in the game.
In an interview with Advertising Age prior to the induction, P&G Chairman-CEO Bob McDonald said avoiding the trap of leaning too heavily on the company's marketing legacy is one thing that keeps him up at night. Increased focus on digital marketing, he said, is one of the keys to P&G's strategy to remain a leading marketer.
Another key is bringing the power of multiple brands together into umbrella marketing efforts, and Global Brand-Building Officer Marc Pritchard said P&G appears to have gotten better return on investment from its corporate branding effort around the Winter Olympics than from many individual brand efforts.
Such multi-brand campaigns long have been the promise behind P&G's regional market-development organizations, such as the North American one headed by Group President-North America Melanie Healey. And in short order following the Winter Olympics, she's leading another group effort, P&G's "Future Friendly" green-marketing campaign that unites multiple brands. Despite the recession, consumer demand for more sustainable products isn't abating, Ms. Healey said, but she said the mainstream consumers P&G is targeting with its campaign also don't want to sacrifice performance.
Ms. Healey's group also heads media planning and buying operations for P&G, and a year after the company took advantage of a soft recessionary media market to drive down costs, she said it retains hopes of getting better pricing once again going into the upcoming TV upfront.