ScienceDirect, Reed Elsevier’s science journal site, had that effect on scientists. Being one of the largest publishers of scientific information, they hold ownership of millions of journals and articles and, most importantly, knowledge. Scientists, Ph.D.s, professors, and lab assistants need access to this knowledge to work their miracles. Companies, labs, and universities pay for this access.
People said Reed Elsevier was all about the money and people were starting to read elsewhere instead.
Can you lose such an image through marketing communication?
The even bigger picture
To get rid of this stigma, you have to go back in time. Almost every company, from small to multinational, started with a dream, a mission to help, to improve or to bring something new into the world. If you are able to find the story of your beginnings, you can lift it up and make it into the bigger picture of your positioning campaign.
In the case of Reed Elsevier: the core of their dream was to distribute knowledge in order to make it a starting point for new discoveries. “The knowledge of today is the example for tomorrow.” Based on this thought, we created the For Great Thinking campaign, which rewards living scientists for being an example to others.
Pride, gratitude and jealousy
The campaign uses these three evil sisters to get entries and audience for the competition. The process begins with pride. Scientists, like all people, enjoy recognition and attention. They are proud of what they have achieved and love to share their successes. Then comes gratitude—they feel humbled as they enter the names of coworkers, colleagues, and other significant contributors to their success. Then Jealousy kicks off the race, prodding them to make sure people will vote for them.
We developed the For Great Thinking campaign for Reed Elsevier to change their greedy, no-heart-for-science image. By setting up a competition, they became involved in a worldwide match between scientists while carefully surrounded by journals and articles published by these same scientists. Job done.