Marketing Campaign Case Studies

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


In striving to establish a strong brand identity for HBO, the campaign had to differentiate the channel from its competitors. HBO’s most direct competitors were other pay television channels. Although it was by far the most watched pay television station, HBO faced stiff competition from other cable channels. Networks such as Showtime and TNT followed HBO’s lead in offering more original programming. ‘‘There was a time when HBO’s programming was the only thing worth watching on cable, but that’s not the case anymore,’’ a television industry analyst told the New York Times. HBO’s long-term success involved more than simply staying afloat in the premium channel television industry. The channel was also competing against different types of entertainment sources. HBO felt that it could not compare itself only to other TV channels. It had to get people’s attention. In an era in which the average person could choose to watch a sitcom on network television, tune in to CNN on a basic cable package, rent a movie from a local video store, drive to a nearby theater to see the latest Hollywood film, or pay for HBO’s movies and shows, the image ads were intended to equate HBO with entertainment. According to Parmet, ‘‘The ads needed to be cutting edge. We wanted to make the kinds of ads that people would talk about the next day at work.’’