There are just two basic strategies in digital innovation in marketing – ‘help me‘ or ‘entertain me‘.

Unfortunately, most digital marketing still falls somewhere else entirely, into a futile ‘interrupt me’ bucket…

So here are 4o ‘help me’ examples of ‘marketing as a service’ (aka brand utility – mostly digital) for your delight and delectation courtesy of  Brieuc Saffré and Marwann Al Saadi, and their rather useful blog, brand-utility.com

Some of these brand utility examples are a little long in the tooth (and skewed a little French), but they are good creative stimulus nonetheless for those of us wishing to move marketing beyond the ‘marketing as interruption’ quagmire;

 

  1. Stiegl Beer – Free public transportation ticket on beer bottles
  2. Vodafone – Pocket Power – clothes that charge smartphone
  3. Scrabble – Scrabble sponsored gamified (solve word puzzle) free WiFi
  4. IBM Smart outdoor advertising (curved billboards/poster doubles as seat, ramp, awning)
  5. Brazilian Blood Bank “Donor Cable” donates smartphone battery charge to a friend
  6. Audi Start-Stop app – uses the same start-stop energy saving principle in Audi cars to save battery life
  7. KLM Your Must-See Map – personalised travel map with friends tips
  8. Babolat Play & Connect – a connected racquet that tracks technique and performance
  9. Nike Golf 360 – Nike+ for golfters, score rounds, track stats, compete with friends
  10. Getty Images Watermark Projects – not just the logo on previews, but useful image information
  11. Ray Ban - Bright Light (Concept) – geo- app to find sunny spots in your city
  12. Starbucks Early Bird (concept) alarm app that rewards early risers with coffee discounts
  13. Adidas Runbase – branded showers and lockers near Tokyo subways stations
  14. KLM Meet and Seat - stalk people on Facebook and grab a seat next to them on a flight (perhaps not)
  15. Sherwin-Williams ColorSnap – app that produces paint palettes based on photos (Adobe Kuler for interior design)
  16. Clorox Glad – Trash Smart – app from trash bag brand that locates nearest recycling centres
  17. Kodak Picture Spot – real world signs showing photo opportunities (could an AR version of this have saved Kodak?)
  18. Betty Crocker TV – YouTube recipe channel
  19. Delta Bag Tracker – Fedex style tracking of your luggage
  20. Kalles Kaviar Egg Timer app  – scan egg for info (provenance, metrics) and perfect cooking instructions…
  21. Adidas miCoach – personal training app from Adidas
  22. Asics Marathoner app – pesonalised messages from supporters on billboards throughout course – triggered by RFID
  23. IKEA pop-up nap station – sleep pods for weary drivers on the autoroute- featuring IKEA beds
  24. Jimmy Fairly – French glasses brand take on TOM’s (buy one, give one)
  25. AT&T phone charging lockerbox
  26. Google wedding planner – uses Google tools to plan, budget, share a wedding
  27. Google person finder – used after Japan quake in 2011, helps people reconnect with friends and loved ones in the aftermath of natural and humanitarian disasters
  28. Nestlé Dessert – chocolate recipe idea app
  29. Maruti Suzuki – Indian Suzuki car brand hosts second-hand buy/sell/exchange site
  30. MUJI productivity apps – branded calendar, notebook and travel apps
  31. Google Teach Parents Tech – helping children tech-educate parents
  32. Broke Bike Alley – bike shop metal business card that works as a bike spanner
  33. Diageo – cocktail recipe site featuring Diageo brands
  34. Nike+ – iOS running app, track performance and compete with friends
  35. Toms  – buy-one-give-one pioneer – shoes and glasses
  36. Virgin Atlantic taxi2 – app links up people to share cab from an airport
  37. Nestlé – Devenir maman – pregnancy guide app
  38. Puma – clever little bag, replacing bulky shoe boxes with bags
  39. Mini – roadside assistance app for Mini owners
  40. Kodak share button – didn’t save it from bankruptcy, but the share button cameras was smart