Friday, February 04, 2011

If You Force It, They Won't Come

Happy 2011 everyone.

It's almost that time again ad know, the time when we in Canada watch the Super Bowl but don't get to see the *super* commercials produced especially for the broadcast. Read why HERE (thanks CRTC!). I remember way back when we'd have to wait months for some of those fancy shmancy commercials to come to town, literally, when the best of the best would play at the local rep cinema as part of the yearly Cannes Lions Advertising Award Winners film screening.

Then the internet came along, and we up here in the frozen north would sit and wait with bated breath after the game for someone to post the Super Bowl commercials (or in June the Cannes Golden Lions) online and hope the site wasn't geo-blocked. Sometimes it wasn't....most times it was. And now it's 2011 and we in Canada *still* can't watch the super Super Bowl commercials as they air during the game, but the internet is the new advertising super highway so finding them and watching them after the game is pretty much a given. Find last years Super Bowl ads HERE. Find last years Golden Lion winners HERE. Not only that, some companies are letting their super new ads leak onto the interwebs ahead of time for us "all" to watch. And enjoy. And remember who made it. And go buy that product. Hopefully.

One Super Bowl commercial that leaked? online yesterday even had it's own teaser ad released a week ago. Yeah you heard me, a teaser ad for a commercial. But you know something - it deserved a teaser ad because in the end, the finished product was that good.

See for yourself... watch HERE... if below video doesn't work.

In less than 24 hours, Volkswagon's "The Force" has over 5 million views (now over 12 million views after only 3 days). And I'm of the mind that as good an ad as it is, the fact that it is a 'Super Bowl' ad increased its chances of successfully watched and then forwarded on. But it also succeeded by not being 'forced' upon me by an overzealous marketing department. Rather, I 'discovered' it via friends and colleagues I follow on Twitter whose opinion I trust. The relationship between the product and consumer was almost symbiotic in this case, if there can be such a thing. And even though there will be more than 50 million people tuned into the Super Bowl game on Sunday, I'm willing to bet VW would happily take all those individual internet screenings over being just one of many ads during the game broadcast and call it even. Or call it a win, even.

TV still drives the car, but the web also has its hands firmly on the wheel. And in the brave new world of selling your product, any product, you've got to have both squarely on your team.

Thank goodness the internet is still on our side up here in Canada. For now.