The ads, along with the new gaming device, appeared during the New England Patriots versus Indianapolis Colts football game. The TV campaign follows a series of online ads, which launched Oct. 4.
New York Giants Michael Strahan leads the television campaign. Strahan belongs to the NFL Players Association, and has appeared in the licensed football games on all PlayStation platforms. In the commercial that aired Sunday, he's seen playing "Madden NFL 08." The campaign, an extension of the "Dude, get your own" television and online campaign, focuses on the new lighter, slimmer and more portable PSP hardware. The new PSP campaign also continues to feature PSP's "Annoying Guy," who has appeared in previous advertisements.
Daniel Ernst, Soleil-Hudson Square research analyst, thinks it's a smart way to launch an ad campaign, during a football game on the weekend when the highest concentration of potential viewers and buyers are glued to their sets. "The key is the launch of their new lower-cost PS3," he says. "They wanted to promote their push into the holiday season with software and games."
Through January, consumers can expect to see several 30- and 60-second TV spots. They will air on a range of network, cable and syndicated television stations. These include NFL on Fox and CBS; "Prison Break," Fox; "Conan O'Brien," NBC; "Saturday Night Live," NBC; "Family Guy," Fox; "South Park," Comedy Central; "The Daily Show," Comedy Central; "SportsCenter," ESPN; NBA and NCAA Basketball, ESPN2; NBA, ESPN; College Football, ESPN2; TRL and "The Real World," MTV; WWE, USA; "Adult Swim," Spike TV; and "UFC Unleashed" and "Game Head," Spike TV.
Developed alongside Omnicom's TBWAChiatDay, Sony also launched a campaign for the PlayStation 3, emphasizing software and services. It highlights the benefits of the Blu-ray DVD technology, as well as PlayStation Network, the free online community, and PlayStation Home, a service that lets gamers create avatars that live in homes within the PlayStation 3 communities.
TBWAChiatDay also creates ads for Apple, Procter & Gamble, among other high-profile clients.
Last year the PS3 campaign emphasized the technology, whereas this year's ads focus on entertainment and services.
Ernst expects Sony to ship about 4.5 million PS3 units worldwide in the December 2007 quarter, compared with Nintendo shipments between 6 million and 6.5 million Wii consoles in the same time period.
The lineup of advertisements for game titles includes "Heavenly Sword," "Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction," "Warhawk," "Uncharted: Drake's Fortune" and "Gran Turismo 5 Prologue," along with upcoming third-party exclusives like "Haze" from Ubisoft and "Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots" from Konami.
The campaign also feature clips from several third-party software titles such as "Burnout Paradise," "WWE SmackDown!," "Assassin's Creed," "Madden NFL 08," and "Time Crisis 4."
* Editor's note: The article was amended after publication.