campaign tactics

For Walmart and Phillips 66, Branding is a Gas, Gas, Gas

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 3, 2013 12:09 PM

Since Walmart apparently doesn’t think it has enough shoppers already, it is taking extra steps in 21 states to woo in anybody who is annoyed with the high price of gas by chopping the price of gasoline at its pumps by 15 cents, Reuters reports.

High gas prices are keeping consumers off the road and out of stores, the wire service notes, so Walmart is aiming to bring those consumers back in by giving the 15-cent discount to those paying with a Walmart MoneyCard or credit card until July 7. For those who have Walmart gift cards laying about, this could be the time to use them. Those cards will be worth a 10 cent per gallon discount.

"I am constantly hearing that gas prices are making it tough for our customers to balance their budgets," Gisel Ruiz, COO for Walmart US, told Reuters. "For every cent gas prices climb, consumers have $1 billion less to spend."

In other petroleum news, the chain of 76 gas stations owned by Phillips 66 Company is running a new campaign that isn’t focused on gas at all. Instead, it’s a faux public-service announcement campaign that aims to help "stop honkaholism." In the commercial, honkers are urged to use a “Honk Suppressor,” a special 76-branded button that makes high-pitched squeak noises like a child’s toy, to stop beeping.

It is all part of an ongoing “drivers’ side” campaign by 76 that is seen not just on TV but on billboards, social media, events and on a special website, the New York Times reports.

“As proud as we are to sell the top-tier fuels that we do,” says Tami Walker, manager for brand management at the Phillips 66 company, to the Times, “the thing most valuable to us about the car is the person behind the wheel.”

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