Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Slow Dancin' With Doritos

IAB Canada's MIXX Canada Conference from last week has generated a lot of positive feedback, not least for the presentation by BBDO Argentina's Interactive Creative Director, Fernando Barbella, who presented an insightful, not to mention thoroughly entertaining, social media case study in positive "brand hi-jacking" based on a campaign for PepsiCo. brand Doritos.

Doritos was almost completely unknown in Argentina until a couple of years ago; since then the brand has built "street cred" and became accepted exclusively with young people. In 2008, BBDO Argentina developed a new message to associate with the brand, which would create interactivity and affect the target audience on a deeper level. It involved a proposed solution to the various challenges facing Argentinian teenagers in the realm of dating (music is too loud at nightclubs to facilitate conversation and couples dance separately; shyness and fear of ridicule can lead house parties to be intimidating venues). This crusade was dubbed, "Bring Slow Dancing Back"! This campaign so inspired its target audience that it inadvertently generated its own youth movement. A couple of friends took it upon themselves to plan a flash mob-style party at the biggest disco-ball in Buenos Aires (The Planetarium) to bring slow dancing back in vogue and reap its romantic rewards (you can tell I enjoy alliteration).

The campaign launched with five humorous, risquée, 1980s power ballad-laden television commercials that extolled the advantages of slow dancing. I've included a few here for your viewing pleasure. They quite sharply contrast how conservative (often read "bland") many North American television ads are; Europeans and South Americans seem much more willing to push the envelope creatively!

For a more detailed summary of the case study, check out Sonia Carreno's blog Passage Communications.

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