Attention iPad and Kindle users: in a marketing campaign launching this week, Barnes & Noble is throwing down the gauntlet to say its Nook is the best tablet for true readers.
In conjunction with a software update that brings many tablet functions to the company's Nook Color e-reader (including e-mail and Web browsing), the campaign showcases the device as the one that brings the emotional power of reading -- and the ability to lose oneself in a book -- to life.
A television commercial from Boston agency Mullen shows people reading -- via the e-reader and traditional printed books -- in various places such as on a boat, in a park, in a school hallway and comfortably at home. Narration, expressed through different characters' voices, demonstrates how people can get lost in books and stories.
"Till all the books are read," it begins, "and all the pens are put down. And everything there is to learn is learned. Till tears are no longer shed. And the zingers have all zinged. And the irony is all ironed out....Till rhymes stop rhyming, and pots stop boiling. And everyone is happy, and there's nothing more to say. Till that day, by hook or by crook. By book or by Nook, I will read."
The spot concludes with a stylized "N" logo for the Nook and the tagline "Read Forever."
"The aim of the commercial is to celebrate the romance and joy of reading in whatever fashion you decide to read in, and tie-in that Barnes and Noble has always been there to support reading and bringing great books to people," Sasha Norkin, vice president of digital marketing for Barnes & Noble, tells Marketing Daily. "We've already optimized Nook Color to be an interactive experience. We want people to know that Barnes and Noble is going to give them the best reading experience."
Print executions make that point more directly, proclaiming: "If you love reading, this is your tablet." The campaign is timed to correspond with a software update for the Nook Color that brings several tablet qualities, such as e-mail, third-party applications and enhanced Web browsing, to the e-reader.
"The Nook color has been highly lauded and acclaimed as the best tablet for reading," Norkin says. "What we concentrated on was creating an experience on a tablet that is the best for reading, and adding in other elements that people like to do on tablets that our customers have been asking for."
The television commercial will air in 30- and 60-second versions beginning this week, including a high-profile spot during this week's "American Idol" results broadcast on Thursday. At that time, the company will also launch a social media effort, encouraging people to pass along the commercial and explain why they would like to read forever. The social media effort, run through the company's Facebook page, will give readers the chance to win prizes such as a new Nook Color and/or gift certificates.