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Sling Baby – Best Video Ever! But does it matter?

January 15th, 2012 · 10 Comments · Random Stuff

Every now and then I’ll see a great video and post it here. This is one of those times, and one of those posts. But in addition to posting the video, I’m raising a question… not about the video, but about marketing. As for the video, it’s called Sling Baby, and it is one of the five finalists for a contest to make a commercial for Doritos, with the winning video to be shown during the Super Bowl. As for the video, Sling Baby, it is the Best. Video. Ever. Or at least, the best video I’ve seen in a while. Of course I’m a sucker for cute babies and kids, but this video is great in so many ways. I ask you to take 30 seconds of your time and watch it, and then if you want, you can even vote for Sling Baby (and see the other four finalists videos), and we’ll see if Sling Baby wins! So without further ado…
here’s the video… but after you watch Sling Baby, please keep reading, as I ask what I think is an important marketing question…

The marketing question I ask is, “Does it matter?” I don’t mean any offense to Sling Baby, and I’m not asking if it matters for the video or the creators of Sling Baby. As I said, it is an awesome, hilarious video, and I am extremely impressed that the video is what I would call national-television-quality. The creators did an amazing job, and could end up winning $1,000,000 and the fame of having had a Super Bowl commercial (if I correctly understand the contest)! But as a marketing method for Doritos to sell more chips, does the video matter? Does it work?

Don’t get me wrong… as I written here before, I love the fact that beer companies (and soda pop, potato chip, and car companies) spend billions on funny TV commercials that entertain me. I love to watch the Super Bowl to see the latest Budweiser commercial (but I drink Sierra Nevada Pale Ale instead of Bud) or to see how over-the-top GoDaddy’s latest commercial will be (but I use 1and1 instead of GoDaddy for domain registration). When it comes to marketing (and trade show marketing), does producing a funny but product-irrelevant ad, commercial, or marketing campaign really result in selling any more product at all, and is it really the best way to spend a marketing budget?

After last year’s Superbowl (when the Green Bay Packers triumphed!) I think I wrote about a funny car commercial that I really liked, but I couldn’t remember what car it was for. Just this month, I’ve seen another TV car commercial (not so funny though) about a guy asking a woman to marry her, and then she thinks about all the things in life she wants to do before she gets married… At the end, I notice they mention the car, and I suppose the car is supposed to help her accomplish these things, but I don’t buy that premise, and in the end the commercial says nothing about why I should pick that particular car instead of a different car.

Back to Sling Baby… Again, it’s a fantastic video, and I appreciate that Doritoes was responsible for it. And I happen to like to eat Doritos. I prefer to eat corn chips instead of potato chips, and if I’m not having salsa, then I like Doritos with their tasty orange coating (whatever it is). So I would buy Doritos if I wanted some, but NOT BECAUSE OF THE COMMERCIAL! I don’t care for Pringles or Ruffles, and if Sling Baby was backed by either of those chip companies, even though I liked the video, I still wouldn’t buy either of those chips.

So in the end, is it good marketing (and a good use of limited marketing dollars) to make an entertaining, funny, or cool commercial that people like, but doesn’t say ANYTHING about why you should actually buy a product or what the benefits of said product are? Personally, I think it has very limited potential that is almost impossible to qualify, and one is better off for marketing and for trade show marketing in specific to focus on your product and why it is a good product, and how it can help or benefit your prospect. I.E. if you’re a car company, focus on gas mileage, safety, towing capacity, or utility, but don’t talk to me about some woman’s pre-marriage bucket list. That said, I’d love to hear your thoughts on what the industry calls “brand recognition” and whether you agree or disagree with me and why…

But again, back to Sling Baby (oh, what a cute baby and clever idea for a funny video). Let me know what you think…
1. Did you like Sling Baby?
2. Do you like Doritos?
3. And, most importantly, are you ANY MORE LIKELY to buy Doritoes the next time you need chips BECAUSE you saw Sling Baby?

Finally, don’t forget to vote for Sling Baby (if you liked it), and remember the video is called Sling Baby, and not baby sling, baby slings, or Grandma Slings A Baby.

update: I wrote this post before the Green Bay Packers played the New York Giants. Well, the game is history now and it didn’t turn out the way I expected or hoped for. Bummer. Major Bummer. I guess the “glass is half full” way of looking at it is that now that Green Bay has been upset and is out of the play offs, I will be able to focus more attention on the commercials (including, I hope, Sling Baby) during the Super Bowl. Oh well, there’s always next year for the Packers.

Post-SuperBowl-2012 UPDATE: Congratulations to Sling Baby! They won, and won big! Not only were they judged to be the best of the five finalists for the best Doritos commercial, according to all the consumers that voted at the USA Today / FaceBook Super Bowl Ad Meter, Sling Baby was the BEST commercial played during the entire Super Bowl, which means it won the $1,000,000 Doritos contest prize. They could buy a LOT of Doritos with that cool million bucks! Way to go Sling Baby!


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