Archive for December, 2006
We already know how much I think the Jetta ad campaign bites. Sadly, they have another round running. And the worst is that I think the commercials are great right up to the impact. This ad campaign literally played a role in me not buying a new Jetta. Which is quite a feat, I think, because I have a ’97 Jetta Trek that I love.
Anyway, now I’m compelled to write about one more ad campaign. Actually, I guess it’s just a commercial. Fortunately, I won’t be subject to this one much longer, because it’s for the Christmas season.
Let me give a little background. There was a lot of hype this last summer about the affect the Internet was having on entertainment and other mass media. I only mention the anti-hype from Snakes on a Plane for one. The world didn’t collapse because a movie had more attention before its release than after. Let’s not assume if the SOAP producers had successfully renamed the movie Pacific Flight whatever, it would have had any more or less success. I’m thinking even though the movie didn’t perform as some in the press thought it might, it did better overall than it would have without the Internet attention. And in hindsight, I’m kind of amused by the mass media hype that was generated by the Internet Hype. There’s some irony in there I think.
Anyway, the offender I’m choosing to complain about today is a huge beer company (HBC) that I will not mention, mainly because they don’t need it, but also because they don’t deserve it for this particular action (think: great taste, less filling…). For a commercial this Christmas, this HBC grabbed an idea for a commercial directly from a web video of last year: this insane shot of Christmas lights set to music, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, I believe. This web video came out sometime around Thanksgiving 2005, which makes me think it was actually filmed the year before. It got featured on RocketBoom, and various other Vlogs.
So, this year there are lots of copies on YouTube. Some are decent and they’re done by self-funded web monkeys, but one copy is well-funded and professionally shot and choreographed. Come on HBC!! How much did you pay an ad company to copy this web video? And here’s the big question: was it worth it since the original is so much better than your expensive rip-off? I can only guess someone went on vacation, because the man-law commercials are great…
Frankly, this is the worst of modern advertising. If you’re looking for a reason that the Internet is going to ultimately kill TV advertising and entertainment, this is it. To survive, traditional forms of media need to be more creative. Not less. If you really want to show how cool you are by attaching your brand to a web meme, play the actual video from the web.