Media for the Online World - Your Brand Website, Part 2

by , Apr 1, 2001, 12:00 AM
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In last month’s column, I wrote that less than 20 percent of the top 100 brands are using their own website to showcase their television creative. To me, this a missed opportunity to put their highly impactful, very creative branding messages in front of their exact target audience, often right before an opportunity to make a purchase. However, there are a handful of brands that in my opinion do use their websites as a new medium for TV spots. Here are a few of them.

Volkswagen (www.vw.com) Here you’ll find 19 of their latest TV spots, quite likely the majority of their creative reel. Their site states, “Whether you’ve come to watch some of our commercials or to find the name of the band that plays ‘that song,’ you’ve come to the right place.” Anyone who is in the market for a car will get more of the essence of the car’s brand from these spots then any spec-heavy brochure.

Budweiser (www.budweiser.com) Once you get past their mandatory age check page to the real homepage, you’ll clearly see “BudVision,” with a link to “watch ads.” Here you’ll see 11 spots, including the now-famous Super Bowl “Wassup” ad and their latest one about an ill-placed pencil that will make you laugh out loud. I don’t remember the last (or even first) time I said that about a banner ad. For good measure, they also include some witty magazine ads as well.

General Mills (www.generalmills.com) General Mills has much more of a corporate website, with emphasis on news and quarterly earnings. However, on their “History of Innovation” page, they show a timeline that includes five radio spots from the ‘40s and four TV spots from the ‘50s. Although these aren’t new executions, the nostalgic mood they create is endearing and brings back fond memories of these brands. As an aside, it also shows how advertising has been an integral part of the growth of this company.

Pizza Hut (www.pizzahut.com) Not the most creative of sites, but right from their homepage they invite viewers to “See our Penn & Teller ad in The Pizza Hut Lounge.” Only two spots are available at this point, but they deftly convey the irreverence of Penn & Teller and in a fun way quickly explain how to eat pizza backwards, something even the longest copy block couldn’t hope to do. The TV spots act like the perfect storytellers.

Apple (www.apple.com) One might expect the makers of the media player Quick Time to have a great audio/visual site, and they don’t disappoint. The site prominently bills “New TV Ads” for their 12 spots that not only showcase the use of Quick Time but also provide powerful statements for all their products. The exclusive extended version of “Rip. Mix. Burn.,” with Barry White and a dozen other music personalities, is a nice bonus for the viewer and worth the download wait.

Each website uses the spots in a different fashion. The one common denominator is memorable television creative. If your agency is doing work that is this good, then your next media buy must include www.yourbrandwebsite.com.

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