‘Everything’s bigger in Texas’ – the slogan couldn’t be more apt of this enormous state in the USA’s deep South. Whether cars, meals, accents or personalities; in Texas, bigger means better. On a recent trip to see a friend, GEM MEDIA Content Manager Sophie, visited Dallas and Austin to scope out what these Texan cities had to offer and on the way gained interesting insight in to whether Texas also does Marketing that bit bigger.
First stop was Dallas and the first day spent catching up, watching TV and overcoming jetlag. If any of you have ever been to America and watched American TV you will have noticed the adverts, sorry, ‘commercials’. Bold American accents and over-dramatised performances market products to viewers through the screen. Why does this work? Being such a large state, everything is very spread out and most people drive everywhere – it is rare to see people walking (even in the city centre of Dallas!) which means that even shops and restaurants advertise themselves to viewers rigorously through TV and radio. Restaurant owners speak to viewers directly through the box and repeatedly provide them with exact address and directions, down to which junction on which highway or street sign, to find them. What seems to be the most prominent aspect of this type of American marketing is making sure the consumer need only put in minimal effort, even if that means just getting in to the car … put it this way, they even have drive through banks. Although we have TV marketing and advertising in the UK, the delivery and content differs significantly, making it ever more prominent that the audience is the most important part of marketing, whether that means culture, country, language or area.
With most driving from A to B and more space in Texas, supersized signs over the highway were another staple marketing tactic used by service businesses, real estate, hotels, restaurants and all in between. Bright, bold and lit up at night these catch the eye and scream all-American city.
If TV was so prominent so, we would assume, was the Internet so on to the web and social media to see what top spots, cafes and bars were a must do in the city. An extensive ‘what to do in Dallas’, ‘Best bars in Uptown’ (of course this was the evening) and a cheeky #Dallas Instagram search, loaded heaps of options. Forever reliable in our social age, bars and restaurants have taken to social channels and travel blog sites to market their establishments, and it works. This is a marketing must for business owners – social media can be your best friend for getting people in the door.
Having a local on hand was obviously a major plus for seeing the city at it’s finest. For brunch, Breadwinners is an absolute must, their selection of breads, French toast and pancakes is what dreams are made of. When it comes to Dallas by night, Uptown is the only place for your evening revelling and when done at the club a truly authentic Dallas experience is the 3am Taco drive in visit. Velvet Taco is where to be, with every kind of taco taste with buttered corn, tater tots and even a slice of red velvet cake to top it off… the queues outside of this humble taco shop is all the marketing it needs.
Lesser-known, arty spots of Bishop Arts and Deep Ellum are two places you have to go if you’re visiting the city. Whilst Independent cafes and restaurants are minimal in Dallas city centre, head here and you will see the arts culture rapidly finding itself. These hotspots didn’t immediately pop up in an online search, but are the places that you can wander through in the evening and pick somewhere you like the look of. Try Bishop arts for quaint shops, incredible food and live country music bars and Deep Ellum for hipster bars, even biker bars and lively clubs.
Next to Austin where saloon bars and café culture is an important part of life in the vibrant ‘college’ town.
Here an attractive marketing tactic were simple yet effective chalkboard slogans outside of establishments. More and more businesses are playing around with their slogans, using witty remarks and comic anecdotes to attract customers – and we can’t deny, we all love a bit of American humour. This is a really effective marketing tactic for high-street services. Catching the eye of a passers-by with humour will immediately attract them and also helps to gives the place a personality. When you encourage people to relate and react to marketing, that is when you will see results; this they did well. Here are a few examples…
‘FREE BEER. TOPLESS STAFF. FALSE ADVERTISING.
‘OUR COFFEE IS AN EXPERIENCE THAT CHALK IS UNABLE TO CONVEY’
Safe to say, the coffee was tried, tested and thoroughly enjoyed at Altas Cafe on Ladybird lake...
All in all Texas, you’re big, you’re bold, your food is amazing and the lively café culture is really kicking off with the help of creative ideas, incredible food and coffee and some extremely successful marketing.