Wow! What a game! I mean, Squarespace gave it everything they had, and I think we can all agree Bai won Rookie of the Year. Hyundai made a strong charge at the end, and their cousin—Kia—had me standing and applauding not only Melissa McCarthy, but the sound effects editors.
In fact, what a great night for car companies, huh! Honda really put on a show with that talking yearbook ad that would have made Steve Jobs proud. Ford started us off strong in pregame and postgame with the stuck/go further ad. But… here were my two big winners of the night…
You don’t have to agree with their message of acceptance, and they don’t care. They, as my friend Stacy Snow deserves credit for pointing out to me, won for knowing their customer and speaking to them about what matters to them in a language they understand. That’s MVP-level advertising. They were so confident they knew their customers—and their customers knew them—they chose not to include THEIR NAME in the entire ad. I’ve written about this before: Make your tribe feel special. Ironically, Airbnb’s message of inclusion was really directed at a very specific group of people, and it was an impressive, bold effort.
In my presentation Uncovering Your Unique Value Proposition, I use both Chick-fil-A and the Grateful Dead as examples of companies that know who they are. They know how they think, act, and see the world, and they’re willing to pay the price of NOT BEING ALL THINGS TO ALL PEOPLE. You can learn a lesson from that.
I’m not telling you to be Airbnb or Chick-fil-A or the Grateful Dead. I’m telling you to be you, and to be you proudly.
Audi’s ad won my night and not for the reason you might suspect: That as the father of a 7-year-old daughter, I’m a sucker for anything mirroring my belief that she (and any seven or seventy-year-old girl) can do anything they darn well please.
I mean, yes… I loved the message… but why they won my night was because THEY WALKED THE TALK.
After she wins the race, a title card appears on screen:
“Audi of America is committed to equal pay for equal work.”
And then another:
“Progress is for everyone.”
Again, you don’t have to agree with the message… that’s not my point. My point is that unlike, say, Kia, Audi tied their message to an actual policy of the company. Kia made us laugh. Hyundai made us cry, but those ads both could have been for any car company… or shoe company… or [insert your business category here] company.
Audi took one of their policies—an observable manifestation of their core value of progress—and built an entire story around it.
You can—and should—do the same.
The Night’s Big Fumble
84 Lumber… oh, 84 Lumber… I know you worked hard to try and do something good, but you blew it. If you have a mysterious message and say you’re going to continue it online… make sure you have enough bandwidth so people can actually watch the continuation.
Finally, Speaking Of Continuation…
Did you go to johnmalkovich.com? They got what my friends and conversion experts Jeffrey and Bryan Eisenberg call a “scent trail” EXACTLY right… I hope 84 Lumber watches game film of the Squarespace commercial.
Well, those were my thoughts. What were yours? Let’s continue this conversation on our Facebook page…