Yahoo Launches Big Ad Campaign, Debuts TV Spots Online

Yahoo’s latest set of branding ads were launched today on Yahoo Video, and will debut on TV later this week. The spots are part of a multi-million dollar cross-media effort that also includes radio and cinema advertising.

The ads, created by agency partners Soho Square and OgilvyOne Worldwide, take a humorous look at various ways a situation would turn out better if the subject had used Yahoo, highlight Yahoo’s home page, e-mail and Yahoo Answers. Each spot exaggerates a bad scenario where someone does not use Yahoo, and then plays out the same scenario again with a new ending where the person does use Yahoo.

In one, a young boy at his locker is told by his friend that a bully is looking for him, and when he turns around, the bully is there to give him a “wedgie,” hanging the boy from his locker by his underpants. The same scene replays, but the boy tells his friend that he got her e-mail message on Yahoo Mail, and when the bully reaches for his underpants, the boy shows them to the bully and asks, “Looking for these, butt-toucher?”, leading the bully to run away in shame.

A voiceover explains how users can get e-mail right on the new Yahoo home page, followed by the classic Yahoo yodel and the long-standing “Do You Yahoo” tagline.

“Yahoo is a fun brand, and the launch of its new home page gave us a great excuse to use some humor and a little irreverence as a means to promote it,” Chris Curry, creative director at Soho Square, said in a statement.

The :30 spots will debut on primetime television during the season premieres of NBC’s “My Name is Earl” and ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy” on Thursday night. After their debuts, the ads will continue airing on NBC and ABC, as well as on Fox, E!, TBS, MTV, and Comedy Central. New ads will also run in major U.S. markets on radio, in cinemas and online over the coming months.

Other ads in the series feature a man who learned of his car’s airbag recall by reading the Yahoo home page, and a woman who found a new fertilizer using Yahoo Answers, instead of trusting one she saw on TV.

The ads are available to view on Yahoo Video, along with outtakes from each commercial. In addition, user-generated videos from Yahoo’s recent campaign where it enlisted film students to illustrate how “My Yahoo is changing” are available on Yahoo Video as well. All of these videos can be found by searching for “Do You Yahoo” with Yahoo Search.

Allen Olivo, VP of corporate marketing, shares details of the three shoots on the Yodel Anecdotal blog, including some alternative phrases considered for “butt-toucher,” and the fact that the wedgie spot, not surprisingly, resonated with the 18 to 24 demo and not with older viewers.

Yahoo has also teamed up with Dunkin’ Donuts to drive traffic to the Yahoo home page with a coffee giveaway. Beginning at midnight ET on Friday, visitors will be able to download and print a coupon good for one free 16 oz. cup of Dunkin’ Donuts iced coffee, redeemable only on Friday.

Related reading