If you haven’t seen the video of Uncle Drew making kids a third of his age look like fools, then you’re missing out on a hilarious experience. Uncle Drew is the newest celebrity for Pepsi who starred in a small production started by the company as simple internet media. After 10 million views on Youtube in just 3 weeks, Pepsi had no choice but to air the ad during the NBA finals. Uncle Drew, who is actually NBA rookie of the year Kyrie Irving in disguise, shows up to a park with his “nephew” to partake in some late night basketball. At first, Uncle Drew plays exactly how one would expect an old man to play. Eventually, he warms up and starts making people look like fools with flawless jumpers and insane dunks. Check out the video for some laughs.
This commercial, put out by Pepsi Max, was not intended to air on television and cost only a fraction of what a typical production of this magnitude would normally cost Pepsi. Fortunately, it became so popular with almost 80% of viewers still watching four minutes in, that their internet marketing team decided to push for the broadcasting of the commercial.
There has been a large shift from crazy spending on commercials to smaller, low budget internet media by companies in the past few years as social media continues to explode with the number users. Along with this, the audience watching these internet ads have shown an increasing interest in these entertaining, somewhat candid videos. As you watch through the video, there is hardly any signof Pepsi Max anywhere until you watch through the second time and realize many of the people in the crowd are holding drinks. This kind of stealthy advertising has made headway in the internet advertising industry and has produced results with many people re-tweeting and sharing these videos on social sites. The ad plays to peoples’ interests and emotions rather than pushing a product in your face and telling you to buy it.
As Facebook becomes a much larger part of internet advertising for companies, with brand pages interacting more and more with consumers, how important will these internet “ads” be in the future? Companies now have the option to test media in the social arena before spending a ton of money on a huge production they are not positive will perform. This “adds a whole new element to what you can do” says Pepsi Max marketer Sam Duboff.
How do you see advertising like this affecting the future of advertising?