Location, Location, Location. Realtors have been saying this phrase for years. A house can have 5 bathrooms, a huge yard, a giant master bedroom, a heated swimming pool, and an indoor movie theater, but if the home is in Alaska, it’s not going to sell as well as a home in California. Location means just as much as what’s on the location.
As with realty, the location, or medium, of an advertising message means just as much as the message itself. As summarized in the reading, “The medium IS the message.” Where you say the message means just as much as what you say. If you use that to your benefit, you’re going to have some dynamite campaigns.
The advertising agency BBDO nailed it with their Vine Campaign for Lowe’s home improvement store.
They wanted to get people talking, thinking, and sharing positive messages about Lowe’s. They decided to create Vines (6 second videos for the Vine social media app) with Low’s home improvement tips. Vine is owned by Twitter, so people could share these vines on Twitter with their friends. This would be a way to create advertising that people would actually like seeing in their Twitter Feeds (read BBDO’s description of the campaign here: http://www.bbdo.com/#!/the-work/760), and could share on other social media website as well. Here’s an video about it:
Now why didn’t BBDO use a TV ad or a print ad for Lowe’s? We can explain that with McLuhan’s tetrad below.
Had BBDO used print or TV, users couldn’t give feedback as easily on the videos. Vine videos visually amplify just as much as a short TV ad would. However, the Vine videos reverse into not only amazing vine videos, but flip into a huge social media buzz across Vine, Twitter, Facebook, etc… That versatility obsolesces TV and print ads. The social media buzz retrieves wide-spread inspiration for home repairs. Using social media was obviously the choice. Their medium was their message because they used short and simple videos to show how to make home repairs shorter and simpler. The medium amplified their message. Their message was also about sharing tips and tricks to get people to Lowe’s. People could then share the message because of the medium with their friends. It’s a genius campaign. Way to go, BBDO!
It makes so much sense to use Internet and Social Media for online marketing.
The internet is world-wide. It’s free. TV, magazine, newspaper, and billboard ads cost a lot. They also have a shelf life. The internet is ever-expounding, ever-sharing. No one will delete these Vine videos. Lowe’s can build off this campaign for years because of the medium. The all-visual vines can be used world-wide, transcending language boundaries (Lowe’s has stores in Canada and Mexico). They are also saved online on a Tumblr, where people can keep going back to view the handly little hints: http://lowesfixinsix.tumblr.com/.
Lowe’s can add more tips, like special tips for holiday season, humorous tips, seasonal tips, etc… People can spoof them, or make their own tip videos. They can have contests. It’s genius.
Lowe’s would not have had nearly as much success with print ad or a TV ad. They used Vine for a stellar social media campaign. Their medium, Vine, meant just as much as their message. The realtors knew the secret all along–the location matters just as much as what’s in the location. BBDO used that, and created an amazing campaign.