Sunday, November 20, 2011

New Tricks to Play in Direct and Interactive Marketing: Mobile Integrated Commercials

As a current grad student in the integrated marketing communications program with the concentration on direct and interactive marketing, I would say the hottest topic in the field is all about social marketing and how to integrate the new technology such as mobile into the marketing plan. 

With the development of new technology and the popularity of mobile devices, the advantage for marketers are two fold: there are more and more contact points can be created between a brand and the customers. Also, there are more and more channels for marketers to connect with the customers. The mobile integrated TV campaign is a good example. 

The concept of integrated TV campaign is simple: it is an interactive commercial. When the commercial is on airing, along with the message the commercial deliver, it encourages the audience to interact or further engage with the commercial by their smartphone apps. It calls for consumer’s action immediately when the commercial is on.
Old Navy and Pepsi are the two new adaptor of the new concept and make it happen in their marketing campaign.
Earlier this year, Old Navy launched the “shazam now” campaign.  Shazam is a smartphone app which can identify sound tracks by the sound-recognition technology, with 125 million users globally. Old Navy aired music video-like commercial and encouraged consumers to find more about the feathered song by Shazam. When consumer see old navy commercial and do so, Shazam app directs consumer to a mobile site. In the mobile site, consumer can purchase the product, learn some fashion tips and get coupons. Old Navy actually offered coupon for a pair of free jeans for the first 1,000 people who engaged with the commercial and the apps. The result is fairly good: The redemption rate on that offer was 70 percent. Approximately one-third of people who used Shazam during the spot also shopped, downloaded the song or watched the video. Old Navy has also boosted the positive social media buzz.

Pepsi launched a similar campaign as well. Pepsi use Intonow, which is the app can identify TV shows, for customers to check-in their commercial. Consumers with the Intonow app in their smartphone can hit it when the commercial is on. The app recognizes the ad and downloads a coupon right to the phone. Pepsi rewarded the first 50,000 check-in a coupon for a free Pepsi. Simultaneously, the app also gathers key data for advertiser, telling them through which vehicle the commercial was viewed, whether it’s on television or on youtube. For Pepsi, through the mobile integrated TV campaign, they hoped to generate some social media buzz, have more customers try Pepsi max. 

Learning from the great implementation of mobile technology integrated with the commercials, here are the key take away from marketers: 1) the new technology can help to better collect customer data and engage customers. 2) keep up with the trend, utilize the creativity and imagination, an take advantage of it.

Stella Chang, Grad Student, Integrated Marketing Communication, Northwestern University
Twitter: @imcinsider


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