I’ve set Sky+ to record every episode of ITV’s Love Island (the concept, if you haven’t come across it, is to stick 10 or so Z-list ‘celebrities’ on an island and see which ones sleep with each other).
Late at night after finishing email and blogging, I’ll flick through and watch the emotional tantrums and fights with a degree of fascination. Perhaps I’m not getting enough emotional trauma in my own life.
The show is sponsored by chocolate bar, Bounty — so there are small Bounty ads leading into and out of a break.
I hadn’t noticed the call to action before, but paid attention last night. On the bottom of the screen it says:
Text Bounty to 63330 – network charges apply
I read that and immediately thought, ‘Why?’
WHY should I text? What am I getting? What am I signing up for? Do you just want my mobile? Are you just trying to measure responsiveness?
What is THE POINT in asking me to text … without giving me any context at all — except the fact Bounty is sponsoring the show and wants to, I imagine, ‘reach’ me my mobile.
So I have NO idea what to expect.
Well done to the copywriter who thought that one up.
So let’s find out.
I’ve just sent off the text……
Ok, a reply has arrived:
Oh dear. My first response was not to transcribe the text here but to burst out laughing.
The reply reads:
Rediscover the moist and tender taste of Bounty and you could enjoy a holiday in Fiji, see your local Woolworths for details.
I *KID* you not. That’s the reply!
See your local sodding Woolworths? The last time I was in a Woolworths was when I was about 8. There’s one in the High Street but I tell you this, having interacted with Bounty through my perferred medium of mobile, there’s not a chance in hell that I’m going to follow their request and pop into Woolworths ‘for details’.
For details? What the hell is that about.
At the VERY LEAST I thought they’d send me back a link to a wap site, you know, with product information. I was thinking there might be an opportunity to enter a competition, … maybe a voucher to get a discount off some Bounty ice creams or something. They might have even invited me to sign up to some text updates about the show, which, of course, stick the Bounty brand in front of me every time they send an update.
Dear reader, can you believe the state of our mobile marketing industry today?
WHO is responsible for this? Please use your contacts and find out what muppet thought this was a good use of resources.
WHAT marketing director let the Bounty tropical heat get to their head and authorised this patently STUPID mobile marketing plan?
WHO owns the shortcode? What poor aggregator had the conversation ‘Right.. right.. yes, a shortcode. Uh huh. Keyword ‘Bounty’, yeah. Ok, and it’s a wap site, is it, you’ll be wanting? Some sort of 3-stage text competition? A mobile game or downloads? Oh. No? Just a reply? Ahh… er, ok….’
You have to wonder at the balls of the advertising company to put this out to the public.
1. There’s a call to action, without any reason. Perhaps it’s at the top of the show? Who knows. All I saw was that writing on the screen.
2. When I send off a text via MOBILE my expectation is that I get to do something BY MOBILE when you write back. Enter a competition. Send off my address for some samples or something.
3. I do NOT expect to be told that it’d be MORE CONVENIENT TO YOU if I could pop down to Woolworths and hunt around for ‘more details’. I want the SODDING details on my mobile. DUH.
Yup, totally incensed.
Thus, the SMS Text News award for STUPID MOBILE MARKETING CAMPAIGN (AUGUST 2006) goes to Bounty.
Update: I’m looking on Google for the Bounty website and I’m not seeing it anywhere. I just did a Google for ‘bounty’. Nothing. You’d think the marketing chaps could have at least taken out a Google ad for anyone wanting information on Bounty. They needn’t have done much — just a blank page saying ‘Please switch off your computer and go to Woolworths’ would have been as effective as the text message.
I hit Wikipedia for some answers. Cool. That delivered: Bounty, owned by Masterfoods/Mars. I visited the Masterfoods/Mars site. Geez that was dreamt up in 1999, wasn’t it? I hunted around for a Bounty site. Lost patience. So, have a look at Snickers. Right? Ok, now imagine it’s coconut, basically. Or, if in doubt, why not pop down to your local Oracle (Woolworths) for more details?
Now, I remember, I once met a chap from MasterFoods at a networking event ages ago. I said I was in ‘mobile’ and he was quite interested to learn more as he said words to the effect of ‘we know nothing about mobile’. I think I emailed him but got no response. Who, I wonder, is going to put their hands up and say they run mobile strategy for MasterFoods? I wonder if there’s a position open? 😉
Woolworths, by the way, are here.