Personalisation can be good

Following on from last week’s post, it was with great interest that I read this post, by Transmedia-guru Dan Light over the weekend. Entitled ‘The Post-Old-Spice-Hall-of-Fame’ he draws attention to that campaign, the personalised nature of the YouTube responses and the effect it will have on marketeers in the future –

“Following on from the smattering of ill-advised hangers-on clinging to the coat-tails of the meme itself, we’re moving into the phase where agencies have had time to look on admiringly, schedule a meeting with their client, pitch a similar idea, rush it into production, write the press release and bring it to life.”

“What next?” he said, Orange’s ‘The Feed‘ with their ‘singingtweetagrams‘, that’s what.

To an extent, he has a point.

This level of personalisation is nothing new. In fact I doubt there are many reading this right now who will disagree with me when I say that the Old Spice campaign was just so impactful you’d be forgiven for thinking that they invented it.

However, what it actually succeeded in doing (on top of dramatically increasing sales, mass awareness and no doubt going on to win a bajillion awards in the new year), was highlighting the potential benefits of harnessing social media in this way. A – dare I say it – old and staid brand throwing themselves at social in such a left field and disruptive manner is going to win brownie points for sheer bravery alone.

Tippex is another great example here.

But what about the #singingtweetagram? Inventive, yes. Fun, also. But this re-iteration and personalisation of tweets, again, is nothing new. When I first saw it hit I thought ‘Genius! It’s an audio version of IrkaFirka!’

For those of you not in the know, to be ‘firked’ is to have one’s tweet taken, turned into art and tweeted right back at you.

It is a wonderful thing.

The Feed’s elevator pitch? Hashtag your tweet ‘#singingtweetagram’ and they’ll pass it on to the Rockabellas back in the studio who’ll sing it and again, send it back to you.

It worked too. We sent this –

And we got this back!

Great right? Right.

A few things –

  1. What is the objective? How does singing tweets to *anyone* have any direct correlation with brand values, product launches, campaign assets… Who knows.
  2. You heard the audio up there through Audioboo. For some reason The Feed didn’t think to add an option to embed the MP3 on my own site; share it through Twitter? Yes. Download and keep? Also. But no embedding for you.
  3. I’ve never seen @FrankG laugh so much in my life. He loved this and he smiled. A lot. What else? When giving the ‘premiere’ of the clip to the rest of the office, they all laughed too. Wonderful stuff.

Number two is an oversight but one and three cancel out each other quite nicely. If your brand or your client can simply make someone smile and laugh, then who cares about the campaign objectives?

Right? 😉

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Author: James Whatley

Experienced advertising and communications strategist working in brand, games, and entertainment. I got ❤️ for writing, gaming, and figuring stuff out. I'm @whatleydude pretty much everywhere that matters. Nice to meet you x

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