Thursday, August 27, 2009

Boomerang winners in the hot seat

For the last session of the Summit, Boomerang winners presented their award-winning work then sat down all together for a panel discussion.
Just my take on things but it was easier to understand why some campaigns were winners vs the others...


Gold Winner for Online:
Mentioned Support: Rich Ads, Non-rich Ads, Skinner, Search, TV
To bring to life the product benefit of a new Nescafe RTD product, communication asked Listo ka ba? (Are you alert?). Treatment was rap / hip-hop. Viral videos showed Ramon Bautista getting rapper-ready. The campaign microsite allowed users to get their rapper names and take a quiz that tested their wits.
I got to try the quiz, which didn't ask the usual trivia, but instead posed questions like "Which came first, the chicken or the egg?" Well users had to get a hundred of those right in order to be eligible for a prize! Points for engagement!
I thought this was a great campaign. Big Idea was solid, campaign was supported both online and off, and the website had content for various levels of engagement.

Gold Winner for Innovation:
Media Contacts
Mentioned Support: TV, banners, digital PR

Posed with the challenge of promoting "Awesome Philippines" across eleven markets in four contintents without the budget to do actual on-ground at each place, Media Contacts came up with an innovative solution - meet everybody in Second Life. And where else but the 7,108th Philippine island?
Sec. Ace Durano held a press conference on the island, which also allowed visitors to try classic Pinoy activites like beach hoppings and see local landmarks such as the Chocolate Hills.
They also launched TV spots and banner ads featuring, Happy Slip and MTV VJs doing trippy stuff. They called users to search "Awesome Experience" to find out where they were. This I believe led them to the DOT site, where they discovered even more cool stuff they could do in the Philippines, and "Remix Your Vacation" - plan their own itinerary and trip.
Ed Mapa, Jr. was asked via SMS during the panel discussion how many conversions actually came out of the campaign. He clarified that the metrics set by the DOT were not actual conversion to visit, but to drive buzz and conversation which they were very successful at.
I thought that this was really cool! Kudos on integration with ATL, SEO to utilize search as call-to-action, social engineering for the reveal and real innovation via Second Life press launch.

{Did not understand}

Gold Winner for Mobile:

To increase sales for Quaker Oats (which are good for your heart), users were given the chance to win gadgets and even a car if they purchased the product and then joined an SMS raffle.
I felt that this did not impress. What is different about a raffle? It seems like all of the big brands have done some type of SMS raffle.
In the interview after the panel, Leah Besa-Jimenez mentioned that they were discussing heart health even prior to the raffle... which unfortunately was not mentioned in any of the materials shown to the audience. Would have liked to hear more about that instead of a promo since winning a car doesn't seem related to any big idea or even the product benefit.
From the materials shown, I actually thought that the Silver winner, Pampers Hearts Club (also by Proximity), did a better job of engaging consumers.

Gold Winner for Integrated Marketing:
Tribal DDB

When Sandbox was announced as the winner, I thought that they won on the basis of being the first "web-to-wap" portal. I agree that is pretty integrated.
But when they showed the AVP with the marketing for the site, it didn't seem very different - online videos, banner ads, skinners, e-mail blasts and iCafe screensavers. They didn't even do any mobile marketing despite Sandbox being on WAP.
The most creative item would be the viral videos starring Ramon Bautista, which the Tribal speaker said that Ramon actually wrote himself. I find this odd but when I search "Ramon Bautista Sandbox" on Google, the only result is a video on Metacafe, which only has 118 views. Also, searching for the same on YouTube renders no results for Sandbox (but includes some of the Listo vids!). Is this viral?
Lastly, I seem to recall several TVCs and print ads which may have contributed a lot to the number of people that signed up.
Maybe my beef is more that Sandbox doesn't really have a lot of content besides the games, ringtones, etc, that people are going to have to pay for before getting to use.
I don't know, I could be wrong. Anyway that's why the top of this section is titled "I don't understand".


An interesting point that came up in the panel discussion: Digital is not necessarily cheap.
I think the confusion comes from the fact that the distribution network is actually for free. I mean, how much did the inmates in Cebu spend on going viral? Probably not much. But that assumes that whatever, X, will actually spread on its own. It costs money to spread the word, especially vs other brands spreading their own word and most especially vs consumers spreading the words that they and others actually care about.

Besides that, producing digital content is so much harder than a TV or print ad because of interaction. A website has so many working parts that people can use in different ways - click, share, scroll, sign up, comment, play, view - and via different interfaces - Firefox, IE (not 6!), and a gazillion differently sized monitors. Taking all of this into account takes time, i.e. is not cheap!

Also, the Tribal DDB speaker made a good point when he said that digital work is not like a TV spot that you hand to your media agency for launch and then never have to worry about. A website is live, real time and you need to monitor regularly. This also takes time, i.e. is really not cheap!

But that's the value of an agency, folks! We will do all of that so you can still get your beauty sleep :P
All in all though, I was impressed by a lot of the finalists. Digital is coming. List for all Boomerang finalists and winners here.

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