Category Archives: Cultural hotpot


Occupying minds

The classic summer theme returns, one of course I would be sensitive to: the annual fight for towel space between the Germans and the English – a perennial theme that the marketing departments know will attract interest, get customers smiling, and thus hopefully add affinity. Beer companies have used this ploy in England, German comedy writers have reacted, so now … Continue reading


Beer from here

German beer brands, especially the really big ones, have a hard time making sure customers see their positioning as unique. If you go through the top 10, some of the brands’ imagery overlaps – pure ingredients, nature, ‘preference’ brands etc (I’ve counted quite a few that use the preference strategy). I’ve also noticed over the years that big topics used … Continue reading


Cheese again

Well, it didn’t take long in the end to discover what brand of cheese has been mis-copied into German supermarkets. I knew I recognised that packaging: Enjoy the nation’s favourite. On their UK packs, they get it right. Unlike over here in Germany. I don’t get it. I really don’t get it.


Dealing with mixed races

Over the years I’ve seen a number of companies forced by consumers to “stop being racist”. They don’t think they’re being racist, they’re just doing what they always did, but because of demographic changes their use of certain icons become out of touch with modern thinking – and just as importantly, the mixed ethnic origins of their clientèle! The famous … Continue reading


FCUK German style?

If you’re familiar with the examples I show in the marketing course of FCUK, then you’ll understand why this brand recently caught my eye: It seems a drinks maker from Altheim has managed to register the trademark for the vodka-fruit juice mix, despite original protestations. This paves the way for many mesmerising merchandising opportunities. Of course in the UK this … Continue reading


Tease me, Malteser

What the hell are some copywriters thinking when they pen a slogan? Maybe alcohol affects their ability to think straight. We’ve already seen Irish companies writing some really bizarre stuff. But the two examples in this post show that it’s not just alcohol companies – the (often controversial) German drugstore chain Schlecker are equally guilty. Let’s start with the example … Continue reading

Polish Food Lidl

Occupying Pole position

I’ve been watching ethnic marketing in a number of cultures now, not just with the Turkish population in Germany. Some of the big questions you’ll have to ask yourself if you target an ethnic market: 1) Is the target group big enough to sustain good sales? and then 2) At what point do we jump in the deep end and … Continue reading


Clear off

My “Next please” part of this blog is dedicated to new ideas – products or services I think the market is calling out for. A couple of years ago I said it was finally time for hotels to offer a new service, and prevent arguments between tourists from different nations. Well, well. What’s happened now? There is a chain of … Continue reading


Another bummer

Having seen this latest brand, which is targeted at young alcopop consumers and tries to position itself as a trendy tipple with an English touch, I might have to take back my original criticism of Nestlé and its “bum-bum” clanger. Bum-bum ice cream never tried pretending it’s English. It’s a thoroughbred German brand targeted at kids. The packaging doesn’t use … Continue reading


How an expat sees Stuttgart

If you’ve been following previous posts on the failed attempt to update the Stuttgart logo (last week, week before), you might be interested to see some of the counter-suggestions after sent out an open invitation to come up with something better. As a Brit and now established expat in the Swabian metropolis, my vote definitely goes to this logo: … Continue reading


Putting your foot in it

I often post on this blog about things that I find shocking as a Brit living abroad. If it’s not about rudeness or inappropriate visuals it’s about marketing departments unknowingly putting their foot in it. For more, see the Cultural Hotpot posts. Well, this time something in reverse. If you’re German, would this make a shiver go up your spine … Continue reading