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A Simply Perfect Campaign Launch

  |  August 8, 2006   |  Comments

A few considerations when planning the online component of a cross-media campaign.

We're searching for perfection: the perfect place to live, the perfect job, the perfect employer, the perfect campaign. Of course, ideas about perfection differ. And that point informs an online campaign my company recently launched as part of a broader, cross-media integrated effort.

We're running "Simply Perfect" in conjunction with our parent company for our client, the PatrÓn Spirits Company. The focal point is SimplyPerfect.com, a site that allows visitors to post text, audio, and video messages to weigh in on the question, "What is perfection?"

The idea of debating perfection is introduced in the new print, broadcast, online, and outdoor ads. These ads and TV spots are carried through to the site, bringing the concept to life by exchanging thoughts about hotly contested -- and often humorous -- issues introduced in the campaign.

Print ads, targeted to the publications they appear in and editorial content they border, examine topics relevant to the publication's readers. Each ad contains copy on one side of the page that reads: "Some perfection is debatable." On the other side, under an image of a PatrÓn Tequila bottle, the copy states: "Some is not." Ads running in entertainment publications such as "Premiere" and "Rolling Stone" examine the relative perfection of "the book" versus "the movie," or "vinyl" versus "digital." In "Esquire" and "GQ," the debate is two buttons versus three.

TV and online ads work along the same lines. The TV spots, which began airing in July, look at such topics as "football" versus "fÚtbol," and "Animal House" versus "Caddyshack," while a voiceover reminds viewers, "Some perfection is debatable. Some is not." Online ads appear on such sites as Rolling Stone, BusinessWeek.com, and Comedy Central.

Consumers can then go to the site to search for debates, vote for their favorite side, and contribute new debates. Visitors can click either "Russian Models" or "Brazilian Models" to register a vote for the "perfect" choice. They can contribute text, audio, and video comments to bolster their opinions. The most popular debates are more prominently featured, enriching the site with less-than-typical (but, we hope, intuitional) navigation cues and bringing some ideas of taxonomy that we've tossed around the office to bear on the site.

Brian Linder, our associate creative director who recently spoke at ad:tech about the campaign, explains there are some mantras that played a big part in bringing it to life. As online practitioners, when integrating a campaign, consider the following:

  • Don't just repeat the offline campaign online. Don't stop at pre-rolling TV spots or animating print ads. Find that campaign aspect only online can bring out. I love watching a campaign's offline team get reenergized because of a new dimension online folks bring to the table.

  • Be honest. We wanted to be involved in the site's debates, but we didn't want to pose as anonymous people adding comments. So we labeled our contributions as from the PatrÓn team, like a forum manager initiating the debates and keeping the conversations we're kicking off authentic.

  • Integrate. Integration is a big part of my agency's culture. Our online group is scattered all over the agency among the offline folks, and we participate in the same client meetings as our offline counterparts -- part of new business efforts from the beginning. It's taken a lot of work to get to this point, but it has been and will continue to be worth the effort.

  • Go beyond what the client asks for. I hate to see cool ideas left behind because of budget limitation assumptions or because they simply weren't requested. When asked to contribute, we answer the request, but we also offer up something that might take the client further, places they hadn't imagined. That's how the PatrÓn site was born. It used to be those ideas would get lots of praise but no budget. That, too, has changed over the years.

We're excited about the campaign. Check it out and let me know what you think.

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Pete Lerma Pete Lerma began his advertising career in the traditional side of the business, where he spent six years managing accounts for clients such as Coca-Cola and Subway. He then realized interactive marketing was where it's at and, in 1998, joined Click Here, The Richards Group's interactive marketing division. During his tenure at Click Here, he's forged relationships with major online publishers, networks and technology companies, and these relationships contribute to his perspective on the interactive marketing industry. As Click Here's principal, Pete oversees accounts for high profile brands including Atlantis, Hyundai, Travelocity, and Zales. His group has won numerous awards for their strategic and creative work, including recognition from the IAB, Ad:Tech, The One Club, Graphis, and Communication Arts. Pete serves on the board of directors for the Dallas/Fort Worth Interactive Marketing Association and also contributes to the marketing blog ChaosScenario.

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