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John Stamos or a Greek Yogurt Brand Name: Which One Did I Remember?

by Courtney Bosch  |  
February 22, 2013

As anyone who watches TV probably knows, there is a Greek yogurt commercial in which two women are eating yogurt in the kitchen and one says to the other that, in eating this specific brand of yogurt, the next man you lay eyes on will look like John Stamos (the most famous Greek out there except for maybe George Stephanopoulos).

The women proceed to indulge in their yogurt while staring at the doorway to the kitchen. In comes a guy who automatically appears to them as John Stamos.

That's right. He looks like this guy:

Genius, right?

Well, the ad seems like genius... until the following exchange happens between me and Chobani, my favorite Greek yogurt (the only yogurt I eat).

So, What's the Problem?

As you can see from the above exchange, I associated John Stamos with Chobani. The only Greek yogurt I know and consume is Chobani. And when I watched the commercial, I didn't even associate the Greek yogurt as being anything else but Chobani.

As marketers, I think we've lost sight of what's important in our advertising. Sure, John Stamos is a cool dude to have in your commercial... but if someone doesn't even remember the name of your product---or confuses your product with another brand---then how effective was it to shell out big bucks on a big name celebrity?

Even worse, I had to Google the phrase "John Stamos yogurt commercial" to find out exactly what brand of yogurt was even in that commercial. Worst of all, the "other yogurt" that Chobani refers to has an incredibly difficult name to pronounce!

Marketing 101: Tell Folks Who You Are

The point here is to get back to the basics of marketing. Your product (and not John Stamos) should be at the forefront of your messaging. Simple things like focusing on your product name---perhaps having it said aloud by John Stamos in the commercial---would have helped.

We all know that eating yogurt will not cause famous people to suddenly appear in our kitchens. (If eating yogurt really did that, I would have a stockpile of yogurt in a bunker!) So, why wouldn't the yogurt company, Oikos, focus on why I would really want to choose your yogurt over another brand? What makes Oikos better? Does it taste better? Is it cheaper? Is it easier to find in my local grocery store?

Let us not forget the four P’s of marketing 101 when we start the creative development process. Having extraneous things in your ads can be fun and creative, but can also cloud people's judgment and cause confusion, especially if your product is new to market. Remember the product life cycle, people! Your marketing efforts need to coincide with where your product is in the eyes of your consumer. If you are the new kid on the block you need a different approach than brands that have been around said block a bit longer than you have. With all the noise we deal with as consumers, make your product stand out or it will be left in the outer banks of your customer's memory. If your product is easily overshadowed by a celebrity endorsement, how compelling can it really be?

My apologies to Chobani for confusing them with another brand of yogurt. I am now über clear that there is no Stamos in yours.

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Courtney Bosch is a content manager for e-learning and events at MarketingProfs, managing content for seminars and virtual events.

LinkedIn: Courtney Bosch

Twitter: @courtneybosch

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  • by Lisa Chalker Fri Feb 22, 2013 via blog

    Beautiful insight into this Courtney! I really enjoyed reading your insight. While I didn't immediately know how to express what you did, once I read your article I was like "yeah how true is everything you are saying".

    I deal with my clients in marketing with collateral items such as imprinted promotional products and branded gourmet gift baskets. When I research the right campaigns and the items that go with the campaign, I am expressing the importance that you outlined in the end of the can they represent their company the way they want and stand out from their competitors while still staying on the grid with their clientele, referral sources and prospects. While it's not a commercial I am dealing with, it still follows the same requirements in some way.

    Thanks for a great article!

  • by Courtney Bosch Fri Feb 22, 2013 via blog

    Thanks Lisa for your input!! Sounds like you are doing a great job of helping your clients stay true to their brand and remain competitive. Not always easy, but incredibly important!

  • by Gina Sat Feb 23, 2013 via blog

    Isn't it interesting that Chobani has managed to make you such a loyal customer that you didn't even see Oikos right in front of John Stamos' face. Is their yogurt product that good to you? Or is there something else in their interactions with you?

  • by Courtney Mon Feb 25, 2013 via blog

    Hi Gina - it is interesting actually. Chobani hasn't done anything out of the ordinary other than be a brand that I consume and remember. Despite having the product in front of John Stamos' face, I did not see it nor did I recall the name. All I could remember was John Stamos and Greek yogurt which to me signified Chobani. Nothing else stood out to me which is telling about the impact of certain advertising efforts ...

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