Titanic News for 1 Aug 2013

Well August has finally rolled in meaning soon summer vacations are heading to a close. Schools in many places start up towards the end of the month. Kids count down those days as each day means one day less to play around. Titanic news has been a little quiet, usually is during the summer. Probably because so many people are busy doing other things. Except of course here at Titanic News Channel where we are also looking for interesting Titanic stories.

Titanic Belfast (side view)1. Titanic Belfast has hit a milestone when it went over a million visitors. The one millionth visitor was family from Country Kildare, Ireland according to BBC News. Needless to say, the people behind Titanic Belfast are quite happy that it has exceeded expectations.

Source: Titanic Belfast Has Had More Than 1m Visitors Since Opening (30 Jul 2013,BBC)

2. Spas are very popular these days and a special treat for many. One such is Titanic Spa in West Yorkshire, England. The name Titanic does not come from the ship but from a woolen mill that used to be located there (and built in 1911). It advertises itself as an eco spa, meaning of course it is very chic, modern, and costs lots of money. As Roger St. Pierre wrote recently in Belfast Telegraph:

Those opting to overnight or spend a few days will find the apartment-style accommodations spacious and uncluttered, with high ceilings, huge windows and spacious private balconies and a lot of white and cream paint, creating a fresh, light-infused ambiance that puts you straight into a relaxed frame of mind. Breakfast baskets await in the kitchenette. Beds are big and exquisitely comfortable. This all makes an irresistible excuse for a self-indulgent breakfast in bed.

While the ship may not have inspired the name, they clearly borrowed some of its style.

Source: Titanic Spa: Pampering In The Pennines(29 Jul 2013,Belfast Telegraph)

Warning! Titanic Cliche Ahead
Warning! Titanic Cliche Ahead

3. Titanic Cliche Alert! This just in from Finland:
Union leader Antti Rinne pulled no punches in his assessment of the performance of the country’s business elite during the ongoing economic crunch. Rinne accused business leaders of behaving like first class passengers of the sinking Titanic, who thought only of their own welfare during a crisis. “Like the Titanic in its time, life boats are primarily reserved for the cream of society. Ordinary people are being left to battle with the cold water or then to face death,” Rinne declared.

We got Titanic, lifeboats, people being tossed into water. Wait a minute! That was Titanic in 1912 not Finland in 2013. Once again someone attempts to misuse Titanic for political points and fails. We would award Rinne our famous, never duplicated, Fractured Finger Award but we doubt it would make it past customs.
Source: Union Leader Warns Elite Against Abandoning The Less Privileged(27 Jul 2013,UUTISET)

4. Why is Titanic still popular? There have been many, sometimes even more heartbreaking, sinkings before and after 1912. The reasons for its popularity are many but apparently Stephen Brown (University of Ulster), Pierre McDonagh (Dublin City University), and Clifford J. Shultz, II (Loyola University Chicago) decided to study Titanic’s popularity. Their work appeared recently in Journal of Consumer Research. According to the write-up in Science Codex, it is the various questions left unanswered that give Titanic is ongoing appeal.

“The Titanic represents a marketing bonanza for movie makers, memorabilia sellers, tourist attraction managers, and many more. This casts doubt on the long-standing assumption that brand identities should be clear, concise, coherent, and consistent. Clarity is overrated. Imprecision is underappreciated. Legendary brands need both,” the authors conclude.

Now the study is focused on the consumer appeal and why it draws so many to see movies and exhibits. From a marketing standpoint (this is a business not historical study), understanding how brands become legendary is important. Titanic, they argue, became legendary because of so many unanswered questions as to its demise. It is what Walter Lord called the famous What Ifs? If that is the case, then clear brand identities are not always going to work. Imprecise and ambiguous might work as well. How does that play the marketplace? Well if you plan to market something, sometimes the precise will not work but making it seem legendary in some fashion might sell it. Marketing gurus already, I think, know this but it is very hard to put into practice. It requires some very clever thinking and strategy behind it (or you end up burned like Coca-Cola did with its famous New Coke that enraged consumers).

Source:  Legendary Brands: Why Are Consumers Still Fascinated By The Titanic?(26 Jul 2013,Science Codex)