Monday, December 22, 2008

Möbius Commercial

This is my Christmas gift to all my readers involved in advertising. I would have made it a Chanukah gift, but I was working through Chanukah and this is a little better than a new pair of socks. But, if you want to think of this as a late Chanukah gift, feel free.

Over the last couple of years I have seen more and more attempts at piggyback advertising, commercials advertising two or more different products in an attempt to save money on media buys by sharing the cost with one or more other companies or divisions of a company. You have probably seen one or two of these commercials even if you are blind, fast-forward through commercials, and don't have a TV.

A fairly recent, extreme, and in my opinion, ineffective example of said piggybacking is this preview/commercial staring Serena Williams and Hayden Christensen which advertises the 20th Century Fox movie Jumper, Microsoft Windows Vista, Outkast, Nike, The HP Pavilion Desktop Computer, and Serena Williams' clothing line. I probably missed a couple of advertisers, so you might just want to watch it for yourself.

Piggybacking in commercials and sharing media buys to cut back on cost is an excellent idea, but only when the ads are effective for all products involved. I believe that my new idea, the Möbius commercial, will fulfill the wishes and dreams of advertisers wanting to share the cost of some prime time air to get more bang for their buck.

Here is the short explanation of how this works.

Don't get it? Well, here is the long explanation along with an example.

The Möbius commercial would actually be two separate thirty second commercials for different products that share a similar or identical target demographic. These commercials are able to function separately or together, and together they loop back into each other infinitely.

Here is an example:

Title: Very QuikWii

Bob walks into the kitchen with a sad look on his face. Seth, a man in his late 20's, sits at a kitchen table stirring up a glass of Nesquik chocolate milk.

"What's wrong?"

"I'm sad."

The Bob sits down. Seth slides the glass of Nesquik towards him.

"Close your eyes... take a sip of this... and I'll take you to my happy place."

Bob closes his eyes, takes a sip, and smiles. He opens his eyes.

"That is delicious and chocolatey, but we are still in the kitchen."

"Wait for it."

Seth claps his hands. Funky music starts playing and two very shapely black women, Mary and Kiki, dance into the room wearing Nesquik bunny bikinis. They dance for Seth and Bob for a few moments.

Bob asks, "Do you guys want to go play Wii?"

They walk into the living room and Venus and Serena start to play Wii tennis.

"It's on!" Kiki announces.

"Girl, I move like Venus Williams."

Seth and Bob sit on the couch and enjoy watching the girls play.

They turn to each other and simultaneously announce, "Wii!"

The girls continue to play and taunt each other.

Seth stands up.

"I'm thirsty."

He walks out of the room, leaving Bob to watch the game by himself on the couch.

The game ends.

"Can I play?"

The girls turn and lean down towards Bob.

"Uhuh little man! This is best of nine."


Bob gets up and walks out of the room looking very sad.

Bob walks into the kitchen with a sad look on his face. Seth, a man in his late 20's, sits at a kitchen table stirring up a glass of Nesquik chocolate milk.

"What's wrong?"

"I'm sad."

The Bob sits down. Seth slides the glass...

It never ends.

So? What's the big deal? And isn't that a minute anyway? Where are the savings?

This is something new and interesting that will get people talking, and various news outlets will most likely mention the ad, and or play it for free, especially if you buy some ridiculous airtime during the Super Bowl, say a two minute block of time so that you can show the commercials back to back to back to back. That is a lot of backs. The key to this whole thing is buying large chunks of time up front, and then weening down, so that eventually you are just showing the thirty second spots by themselves, but by the time you are showing them standing alone, enough people have seen them together that they are indelibly linked in the consumer's mind. When they see one, they think of the other and vice versa.

I am sure that you can come up with about a half a dozen other justifications and facts to support this idea when you are trying to sell some clients on it. I have several in the back of my mind that I don't want to bore people with.

P.S. Click here to subscribe to Ideas By Chuck before The Rapture.

P.P.S. If you are interested in producing my "Very QuikWii" spot on spec., let me know, as there may be several interested parties. I love parties.

P.P.P.S. For anyone that may doubt me, just remember Spuds McKenzie.


Anonymous said...

this is GREAT! also you forgot to mention the savings on production costs of the actual commercials.... this is an especially relevant in the past 6 months since productions have been slashed dramatically

Anonymous said...

wa wa WOW!... it's almost as if you have two brains chuck... cos it must have taken both of them to come up with such a top shelf idea... as if the shelf is so high you needed to stand on someone's shoulders to reach it... that's how top shelf this idea is

i think this is the perfect time for this... because of the nature of the triple dubs (www), trying to link things and lure eyes through portholes to your message is necessary... teaming up, piggy backing, ad on ad just the way it is.... it only makes sense that some of these principles should carry over into more traditional advertising for fun

i like it

Anonymous said...

just like the serialized Nescafe Gold Blend commercials were unequivocally 80's this would be a totally 2009+ thing

Anonymous said...

I heard the couple from the Gold Blend commercials eventually got married. He became super controlling and uncomfortable with her career and all the men she had to deal with, especially the italian ones. Ironically reflected in her inability to choose a flavor of coffee to make in the morning, she became slowly less confident both in work and in life due to the unbalanced nature of their relationship.

Eventually he left her for a 24 year old pharmaceutical sales girl who immediately quit her job the day he proposed to concentrate on the enormous task of planning her dream wedding. His new wife decided not to go back to work but to start a clothing line.

The woman moved to the states and now owns a small gallery/boutique in Sonoma. She grows her own vegetables and still dresses exactly the same as she did back then.

She keeps a copy of the Four Agreements on her night stand and rereads a chapter or two every couple weeks.

She's also been to several retreats hosted by Andrew Weil and will tell you that this is the best time of her life. She is lying.

You know how I know? She wants to cut her hair really short but still isn't brave enough to do it.

He will tell you the same about his life and is also lying but believes it because he has two children he pins all his hopes on.

His new wife never started the clothing line but got pregnant instead.

He doesn't understand why they need a nanny when his she doesn't have a job but is too scared or lazy to call her on it as he subconciously knows it will lead to a fight where he is left staring the true nature of their relationship square in the teeth.

The woman doesn't drink coffee anymore.

He still does but not the kind from the market.

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