TNT is using a Digital Out-Of-Home execution in NYC to promote the upcoming season of “Rizzoli and Isles.” From its description, it seems like it could be a fun interaction that uses cool technology like NFC (Near Field Communications), but I have not been able to experience its execution first-hand. It’s too bad they didn’t look to emulate at least parts of the experience online. When I went to check out the show’s official site, I could not find an online version of the game experience, which is too bad. I also couldn’t see any images people had taken after completing the task, where they could insert themselves in the image with the cast members. Again, the lack of a clear extension online to those who could not walk by the storefront was disappointing.
There could have been so many reasons why the experiences on the street and online were not tied together in some way: different departments executing without enough communication between them; lacking ability of OOH vendor to create an online-friendly version; the OOH execution is not as it reads; or, a multitude of other reasons. Having not worked on this, it would be unfair for me to pass judgement on what happened and the vendor, Pearl Media, has a good track record.
Its happened many times before – by many companies – for many of the reasons mentioned above. For all of the work that went into the AVATAR home entertainment campaign, we weren’t able to connect the face morphing experience at The Grove shopping mall in Los Angeles with our online extensions – partially due to technology issues and more to do with timing and communication between our digital group and the events team that executed the great OOH experience. In both of these instances, how hard would it have been to enable some type of stream or gallery of photos in an easily sharable online location.
What seemed like second-nature and was so successful for The Simpsons Movie campaign – by way of the simple avatars people could create on the site – has proven over the years to be beyond successful as people were sharing those images everywhere (IM icons, printed postings on cubicles, emailed, etc.) and it is still exciting to see those avatars still posted in cubicles when I visit some clients’ offices. But, even with that, there was a competing Simpsons avatar program that the promotions team set up separately. That one had many technical difficulties and was not as successful as the one we did on the site, but it was a shame that the lack of communication and double resources were expended on the same product without benefiting each other.
Proper foresight, strategy and planning would have helped to bridge the gap in these instances and, hopefully, that knowledge, strategy and foresight will help lead to more integrated instances as these types of executions continue to show up in more campaigns. As technology is getting better and easier to integrate, there aren’t excuses for not leveraging executions across all available platforms.