Friday, January 30, 2009

Social Media Countdown to the Super Bowl - Samsung

I thought I was running out of social media Super Bowl campaigns with one Friday left before the Big Game. Then I saw the Ad Age article about the contest Samsung ran to pick a fan to star in its TV commercial.

So I blithely set out to find out what they did and how they did it. I came up pretty empty, which is a surprise with social media programs. The winning commercial is not on their website. I can’t find it on YouTube (ok, there are 3600 Samsung videos, but I searched several ways). There are “How I See It” (the NFL, in case you can’t guess) videos on the website but they are commercials with fictional characters.
The picture gives a clue to what was done. According to AdAge, “Samsung found its "real-life" candidates by going on a mobile marketing tour to eight NFL cities and filming more than 400 stories, which were whittled down to 48 for website visitors to vote on.”

Questions? How did they “whittle down?” How many website vistors voted? Why haven’t they told us? Why haven’t posted the winner? I think I can intuit the answer to the last one. They’re keeping it a secret for the Super Bowl.

Is any of this a good idea? Aren’t they losing a chance to create visibility and buzz?

I searched the name of the winner, Reginald Castilla, and found only a few mentions by bloggers who, like me, probably read the AdAge article. What I did find, however was the contest site, which I had actually found and mentioned a couple of weeks ago. Still same Vikings fan with purple face yelling something when you open it. But I don’t find the contest site connected to the corporate site.

I’ll answer my own question. I think they’ve lost a huge chance to leverage all the money they spent on the contest and the $3 million Super Bowl ad. If they wanted to create their own content, I guess that’s ok, although it’s not really in the spirit of the social web. There doesn’t seem to have been much promotion of the contest. They are not celebrating the winner in the days leading up to the Big Game.

It seems to me that this represents an overabundance of caution on someone’s part, probably the management of Samsung. Even more, it seems to be a willingness to let your customers in only part way, only under close supervision. That’s safe, but I’m not sure it is a campaign that makes best use of the social web.

Having searched several times, several ways, I can say with considerable assurance that it hasn’t generated buzz at a time when the economy is impacting many aspects of Super Bowl advertising.

But in the spirit of continuing to bone up on what’s going on, here’s a WSJ article that discusses social media integration into advertising efforts.

Enjoy the game!

2 comments:

Samsung Toner Cartridges said...

Well I think that might be a bit true. Everyone has a bit of deep truth in them that isn't really visible at most times. But hey what can I say.. Do we Really want to know the absolute truth about Everyone?? Sometimes, the inner secrets of a person should remain unknown, of course if they harm no body. I do think that stories though, are entertaining whether they are positive or negative, because they depict a 'kodak moment' in time that tells a story. You're right, everybody loves a story or two, so why not imagine your life a big story and be a great story teller!

shubhangi said...

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