Friday, December 28, 2007

American Idol + Borat + YouTube = Pepto Star

Pepto Bismol has merged three popular cultural themes in its latest ad campaign, "Pepto Star." American Idol, Borat and YouTube get mashed up in a bid to leverage something Pepto were already successful with this past year, the dancing monsters commercial. That TV commercial had campy, Godzillaesque monsters performing a Macarena-like dance to an infectous Pepto Bismol song. "Nausea, heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach…Diarrhea!" became viral, and people uploaded their own versions of the dance & song to YouTube without being prompted to do so. I blogged about how this was a good example on how to leverage online social tools.

The Pepto Star campaign seems to have taken a step backward from a marketing perspective. The combination of American Idol-ish Pepto product judges evaluating Borat-ish video samples of people who can barely speak English feels very forced and old skool. This feels like they are trying to squeeze something out of something they already got. People liked the Pepto jingle and freely uploaded and shared videos of themselves without incentive. To now re-wrap it in this new campaign takes away from the freshness and spontaneity they garnered. Look at people just posting it on YouTube and giggling their a$$es off:

At least they are utilizing YouTube and not wasting money by developing their own video sharing website as Pringles did this past year. Using already established tools people expect like YouTube makes sense, but doesn't make up for everything else that just doesn't seem to make much sense.

1 comment:

Hebrink said...

Youtube is a great way to promote our talent.