Tuesday, March 08, 2005

An Idea For TV And Mobile Advertisers

Hey brands, you wanna get back those eyes on your 30 second TV ads? You wanna get people to actually look for your TV ad? I know that sounds unheard of.

Outside of the Bud-Wise-Err frogs and some the bikini clad volleyball girls playing in the snow, I really don't find myself looking for a TV ad anymore. My Tivo like PVR can hyperspeed me thru the ads now.

So how does a brand create such a buzz involving their 30 second ad. How does a brand actually get people to stop the TIVO and INTERACT with ad? I'll tell ya.

Procter and Gamble, Pringles and all major brands can do this.

I will use the example of Pringles and the TV show Survivor as examples. These two go hand in hand. Pringles has been a long sponsor of the show and they have tried on numerous occasions to insert the actual product in the show. Outside of Jeff Probst holding a can while the contestants are trying to win immunity, Pringles has found more ways to get that red can on that show.

OK good for you Pringles, you got your product inserted in the show. You probably paid a bunch of money to do so. But, how much did you pay for those 30 second ads during the show? In my opinion, that's wasted money. I am a regular Survivor watcher and I just zipped on past your ad.

Here's how you get my permission to advertise to me on my mobile. I own a Treo and a years supply of Pringles would be a great prize/incentive......hint hint.

Here's the campaign.

"Be a Survivor and win a years supply of Pringles". All you need to do is click on a barcode of ANY Pringles can to get the secret question or send an SMS to PRINGL (774645) with subject ( the barcode number) to find out what the secret question of the week is.

By clicking on the barcode with your cameraphone, or sending SMS, you have given Pringles the ability to market to you. Now, why couldn't one person just click on the barcode and go to the designated site for the secret question. Well, they could, but until you register "give permission" to Pringles by initiating the contact, the stealer wouldn't be in Pringles registry....They couldn't win the prize.

Can't I just do a Google to find the secret question? No. By clicking on a can of Pringles, you're taken to a designated site designed by advertiser with the secret question. This is how users get used to bypassing search engines. More on that later.

The secret question is not the key, it's how you get it. Not everyone can get this, only those that have the texting ability or a cameraphone.

There are two key things involved here. You must get permission to market to the consumer and if he initiates the contact by clicking or SMS'ing, you get that. Second, by having the consumer contacting you through the mobile, you are getting a very valuable database..the cellphone number.

Now what is the secret question.

That's something the brand manager or the advertiser can figure out.
My suggestions are this, make it easy enough that anyone paying attention can figure it out.
"what was the color of the shirt the actor was wearing?"
"how many cans of Pringles were popped?"
"how many times was the word CRUNCHY said?"

These are easy enough to answer. What you do is force the consumer to watch the whole ad though. I don't know if you see a drastic increase in Pringle sales after the contest, but what you do is make people watch your 30 second ad. The Pringles ad becomes buzzworthy. The ad ALSO merges the physical world with the electronic. It also merges TV and mobile advertising. All for just a few free cans of your product.

Make a cross promotion campaign with Nike or Adidas.
"what brand of shirt/shoe is the actor wearing?"

The contest would involve sending the answer via SMS as soon as commmercial is aired. The first 100 people with correct answer win. Or tie in the show and the contest. "Send the answer plus the name of the Survivor that gets booted this week and be a winner". The cost of this campaign would be minimal and you could start a trend that combines TV advertising with mobile.

I find that I watch TV in my LazyBoy with my Treo in hand. During commercials I check my email. This is easier than getting up to go to desk. Why not market to me then?

Every week send out 100,1000, 10,000 coupons via SMS to people that played the game but lost. Keep these people interested. What does this cost Pringles, nothing. What do they gain, thousands/millions of people to market to.

You can have variations of the question for different shows. An example would be CSI.
This doesn't involve the 30 second ad, but it could give the sponsor a chance to reach those viewers.
Some examples for CSI show.
"what actor said homicide, blood, fingerprint first?"
"what was the blood pressure of first patient?"
"what was the murder weapon?"

You can get really creative with this, and the advertiser could work with the producer of the show to find out what the plot is this week. The secret question could actually be an art in itself.

The whole point to this is you have kept the eyeballs on your 30 second ad. You got people to click on a your product initiating permission to market. You have created a mobile database of the people interested in your show.

What you really do is create a very unique way to combine the TV and mobile.

I got lots of ideas like these. You think the guys at Procter/Gamble or Interpublic Group would like to hear some?


Anonymous said...

Definitely interactive. What brand company wouldn't want that?


Anonymous said...


I can see brands killing for the opportunity to be shown during sporting events. Why wouldn't Nike, Reebock - any sporting goods company - not want to have the exact demograhics they are trying to reach interacting with them, slowly building up TRUST. Start slow by offering shoes or clothing to a few winners and follow up with mobile coupons to be redeemed at the store of their choice - heck, you could even get a particular store to partner with and everyone wins. A college sporting event (NCAA Hoops) could turn into a virtual shopping mall for everything Nike. I bet all the college kids would know how to use their cellphones at a chance to win a free pair of shoes or a jersey of their favorite college team. Offer the ones that don't win a free hat of their favorite team. I'd talk to the Vegas hotels and have contests tied to poker tournaments. Give away some free trips and follow up with discounts to everyone that responded. Talk about win/win. It's endless. -Walden-

Scott Shaffer said...

See how it starts? Get permission by giving away something that is considered inexpensive by the brand (jersey, can of pringles) and in return you created a bond with that consumer.
The key is DONT OVERLOAD the mobile guy with spam. Only send relevant ads, and not too frequently...you SHOULD own this customer for life if you do it right..
How does it all start? Turn on your identifier..something that is already on your packaging..