Commercial Renewal Project: FedEx (2019): “FedEx Tape”

In the original FedEx commercial (2019), a man walking in the woods tastes sap flowing from a maple tree and decides to make and sell syrup. The process of making syrup comes out and delivers the final product through FedEx each time. At first, it started in a shabby warehouse but at the end, he packed maple syrup in a clean factory. This commercial ends with the phrase Opportunity.

The purpose of this advertisement is to show that FedEx offers opportunities to small business in the production and supply process. With FedEx, individual business owners can sell their products without much difficulty. However, this commercial has two weaknesses.

1. FedEx is not highlighted – Throughout the ad, FedEx’s logo only appears four times. Also, the logo is inconspicuous except for the FedEx truck, which is used as an indirect component when loading luggage. As a result, when people first saw the advertisement, they said they thought it was a maple syrup ad.

2. FedEx is not different – The original commercial does not reveal much of the purpose of advertising. Delivering the product is a service that other carriers also offer. Therefore, FedEx does not deliver any special opportunities or value to small businesses or individual businesses that start their own businesses. The message “FedEx offers opportunities for small and medium-sized companies” is not convincing because people do not have to use FedEx unless its delivery services are differentiated from other companies.

Therefore, we renewed commercial. Storyboard was used.

1. We repeat and emphasize the FedEx logo – Unlike previous advertisements, FedEx’s logo appeared 9 times and highlighted tapes or boxes containing FedEx’s logo during design or product delivery. It also emphasized that this is FedEx’s advertising by minimizing attention to products being developed through indirect placement.

2. We present the FedEx’s Small Medium Enterprise support policy through the props – FedEx carries out various support policies, such as the Entrepreneur Advisory Board (EAB) or FedEx Small Business Grant Winner (FSBGW), to support the business activities of small and medium businesses or individual businesses. The new ads indicated that FedEx provides various support policies showing by placing letters from EAB or trophies from FSBGW. By supporting the process of ideas becoming products, FedEx has shown that it is not limited to delivery services, but offers differentiated opportunities compare to other companies.

3. We give meanings to the objects in the commercial – Each delivery starts and ends with the ‘FedEx tape’.  Through the commercial, small idea which was just a sketch, becomes the product that everyone pays attention to. Tape represents a linear delivery process through which small ideas are connected to success. Ordinary tape, which sealed the envelope that contained the initial small idea of man, later becomes the tape that is used for cutting ceremony, celebrating the success of the idea. Tape cutting ceremony means success and the bright future of entrepreneurs. FedEx tape represents the secure delivery and help from FedEx, which is the key of the success.

Written by Seungwon Lee, Jinkwan Lee, Minjung Kim, Minkyung Song, Joonyeol Hwang, and Jungyeup Kim| Marketing Communication 2019 Fall | College of Business Administration, Kookmin University

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