Tag Archives: online

Magic Brownie Adventure Movie, Starring Cheech and Chong

This is how it’s done, friends:

Fiber One has knocked long-form sponsored online video out of the park with this one. It’s genuinely funny and entertaining, and they found the absolute perfect spokesmen to reach the perfect demographic for the product (which you’ll note, we aren’t even exposed to until two minutes in).

It’s advertising like this that inspires me, and makes me proud to be in the business. I’d write more here, but I wanna go think up one for my clients, now.


Does “Great Creative” Mean “Great Advertising”?

Kevin Nalty of Nalts Consulting posted this spot for Intel over at his blog, and beneath that is my comment, taken verbatim from there:

“Wow… What a fun spot!

Viral or not, I’d happily watch that as an interruption to my regularly scheduled TV programming choices (which are becoming fewer and fewer these days anyway), even at 2 minutes, as posted…

All the little “surprises” as they switched apps along the way — Google Earth to Quicktime, to gaming, to YouTube — kept me engaged throughout, and they framed it out nicely with Intel branding at the start and finish…

The only thing I didn’t *quite* get was what viewers (customers looking for a computer upgrade, i presume?) are supposed to DO after seeing this… Call me old fashioned, but even advertising with dazzling creative like this needs a call to action…”

So, assuming we agree that it’s a pretty cool piece of creative, is it great advertising?  Does it compel the viewer to buy?  Does it need a clear missive to viewers to go DO something?  Call, click, stop by, etc.?  Is that even important?

Love to hear your thoughts…

How to Turn DIY Into $USD

Now, everybody can do something… You ever seen ‘Wild Kingdom?’ I mean, that guy’s been doing that show for thrity years.” — John Bender, The Breakfast Club

What can you do? If you can make a video that teaches other people how to do it, you might be able to make a few bucks.

MindBites.com contacted me not long after I posted my “Hypertufa How-To” video for Honda’s DIY contest on YouTube, and invited me to check out their site, whose philosophy is that “we all have something to share.” MindBites allows users to upload their own how-to videos, which are then available for users to download for just a couple bucks. And you split the money with MindBites, who pays you a dollar (via PayPal) every time your video is purchased for download.

What’s great about the “Web 2.0” concept is that it’s based around the notion that the internet isn’t just about getting information. It’s about sharing information. More and more people are turning to online media and resources to learn – whether it’s learning to knit, or learning what kind of camera to buy, or learning about people and faraway lands. My dad and I often joke when we’re stumped for an answer or a solution to a problem, “Ask the internet. It knows everything.” But the reason it does is because more people like you and me are starting to share their knowledge with the world.

So, what kind of video should you submit? They’ll take anything, really, as long as it’s educational, and not offensive. I’ve seen videos that range anywhere from Arts & Crafts to Tech stuff to Music Lessons to Travel and Languages… My 18-year-old stereo speakers needed repair, so that’s what I did:

Once your video is produced and uploaded, MindBites enables you to share it via e-mail, link, or by embedding on a web page. And you retain all ownership and rights to your material, to distribute and promote as you please.

So, will people pay 2 bucks to learn how to do stuff? We’ll have to wait and see about that. I will say that there are things you can do when considering what to submit:

  • Make sure your how-to video is thorough, accurate, and explains things clearly.
  • Make sure it’s a subject you’re familiar with. Know what you’re talkin’ about.
  • Make sure the value of the knowledge obtained outweighs the viewers cost to obtain it. For a $2 download, and about $25 in materials, my video shows you how to save hundreds of dollars by repairing your old speakers rather than buying new ones.
  • As always, keep it short. Remember, time, too, is a cost for viewers.

And for Pete’s sake, have fun, huh? People like to see other people having fun. It’s infectious, and it makes learning easier. I’ll end with an appropriate quote from Fat Albert:

“This is Bill Cosby comin’ at ya with music and fun, and if you’re not careful, you may learn something before it’s done.”

Hey, hey, hey!

SethComedy Debut on YouTube

I’ve been a big fan of Family Guy since its debut on Fox back in the late 90’s. Today, Seth MacFarlane debuted his YouTube channel, SethComedy. They have five videos posted so far, and the animation looks typically like that of Family Guy and American Dad, another MacFarlane co-creation. The subject matter is similar as well, and I certainly hope that the Cavalcade of Cartoon Comedy is as popular, prolific, creative, and consistent online as his TV shows are.

Creators like this inspire me to step up my game.

By the way, Seth, if per chance you should happen upon this post, hire me. I do killer voices. Betcha no one EVER says that to you, huh?

Not That Different

I think that when it comes to garnering results from advertising, online video is not that different a medium as TV or radio or even print.  It’s the old postulate about sending “the Right Message to the Right People at the Right Time and Place.”  The difference in online video is the specificity of choices when it comes to what The Public wants to view.  How The Public responds to advertising isn’t really that different.

If you want to produce a “traditional” video ad, and run it online, you gotta run it OFTEN (frequency is STILL the best way to get results if you ask me) — WAY more often than an ad may be broadcast on TV, because of the vast fragmentation of the online video audience. And you have to run it on the sites where your prospective consumers congregate. A spot that runs on YouTube for an auto repair joint in Bangor Maine won’t get nearly as much ROI as if you post the video on maineautosearch.com, a local used auto dealer site. The old adage is “all advertising is local.” So, localize your online marketing! You may not get millions of views, but you’ll get a higher percentage of quality inquiries…

… That is, of course, if your message is salient and entertaining enough to be remembered, and then acted upon.

Back on the Blogwagon

I had kept a blog for awhile several months back, but kind of abandoned it. I tried to return to it a few days ago, but I forgot all my usernames and passwords and couldn’t get back in, so I guess my old blog has found its way to the internet equivalent of the dead letter office. Ah, well, I’m hoping this will be a better experience for you and me both.

A little background. I’m an advertising developer whose forte is in radio. I worked for several years as a DJ and Production guy, writing, producing and voicing radio spots. In 2005, I started my own production company, Slater’s Garage Ads & Audio. The name is an homage to a garage my family owns in upstate New York. They repair cars, I repair advertising. I still predominantly do radio ads and other audio production. But this year, I discovered video — particularly online video sites like YouTube — and am gradually learning the power these sites have to bring Brands and Consumers together.

I think there’s something happening online, and I think Brands need to be aware of it. Other marketing gurus have blogged about it before, but it bears repeating. People are talking about you. Good stories (hopefully), bad stories, sharing experiences with your product, or your store… Don’t believe me? Google yourself. I bet you’ll be surprised at what you find. And due to the nature of blogs and the internet, more people than ever are paying attention to the stories being told. It’s exciting, dontcha think?

As I move forward in this new blog adventure, I hope to share some of my own experiences exploring this new medium (well, new to me, anyway), and document my learning as I go. It really is a lot of fun, and I’d love to bring you along.