I planted this trap at work today, to see how people reacted (kind of a case of bad research – I didn’t really know what I was looking for), just for fun. And it was. The majority of my colleagues avoided walking on it some just walked right over it saying something like “oh, I’m trapped”. Some people said it was a rational decision to not walk on it. “I thought; OK this is probably something I shouldn’t step on because it goes pop and it’s ruined”. Others didn’t really have a good answer as to why they avoided it. Just “Oh, I don’t know”. Fair enough.
I’m not a big fan of pre testing advertising. However, biking to work the other day it struck me that there are some cases where you can really benefit from it. Riding like a mad man, all of a sudden there are 3 guys in yello shirts in the middle of the lane trying to hit me with something. I feared for my life. They’re students who have had too much to drink, now they’re picking a fight!!?? Not at all. It’s some company (didn’t have time to see which) handing out “free juice in the morning” to people passing by. Pre-testing would have shown that not a single bicyclist stand a chanse to 1 – get the message and 2 – grab the bag with the juice inside. As a matter of fact, pre testing isn’t necessary here either, I take it back. Anyone understands that handing out juice to people riding to work isn’t going to work. Maybe not the typical pre-testing but still.
There’s really someting in this. The truth part. Funny thing is that yesterday I watched Crazy People, about the copy writer who starts telling the truth (Volvo – They’re boxy but good, their not sexy but who wants to be sexy nowadays, with all diseases going around…). It’s gone from glorified truth in 30 sec with a proposition, to on demand stuff and social networks. I don’t care about the media used to get the message through, but I bet you advertising 3.0 is good looking, fun but at the same time strictly informative. Because the way things are going (on demand, what you want when you want it life style) you’ll have brand entertainment and then brand information. That’s how I want it at least. Don’t know how, but it feels right.
Everest Poker was a bit late into the Swedish market, considering the boom in 2005 and 2006. But then again the category as such seem to never get tired of playing and definitely not growing tired of sign-up bonuses. Talking to, and practically living with, poker fanatics from all buy-in levels of the game tells you many things and one of them is the fact that it’s a high interest category but with very low interest in the product brands in every aspect other than the functional benefits which is about functionality on the site (smart settings, auto fold, proximity of buttons and the order thereof etc), number of active players (need to be lots of tables across all buy-in levels), whether or not you can be lucky enough to play with real pros and of course the sign-up bonus (which you don’t want to make your only reason for acquisition as repeat playing gets tricky), most of which are experienced by trial.
Obviously brand communications play a role, first of all by getting people there (and then conversion is up to the site) and also by reminding players that it’s time to try something new (considering the fact that they are often registered on 5-8 sites and often active on 3+ at the time). How you do this, however, doesn’t necessarily have to be so functionally focused and not even bonus focused given the category norm which says; poker players try everything.
We devised a creative strategy playing on high quality feature film style, while communicating the most core brand value of Everest Poker; not making it about bling bling, not about taking the last dime off your opponents – but for the love of the game. A place less macho, and a tad bit more friendly without coming across as completely alien for that matter. That, we figured, is to be shown before experienced, but probably not told. For the player tuned to details, you’d see that the 4 films in total were actually connected in 2 stories. After all, it was all built on evoking curiosity as opposed to being stupidly redundant.