I love bold, ballsy big campaigns that go all-in and make a statement.
But sometimes the work doesn’t quite go as planned and you may end up with a bit of egg on your face.
Which is why it’s not a bad idea to ask yourself the question upfront “what if it doesn’t work?“, and plan yourself an escape route.
OK, so I’ll mention Google+. Why do you think Google called their launch a “beta”, only to open the door to more than 10 million users in its first two weeks? Did something go wrong, did they let too many people in? Surely not… but let’s say, if G+ had been less of a success, they could easily have pinned the lack of subscription to a deliberate plan to keep it small and private. Worse case scenario, if it had completely bombed, they could have unplugged it discreetly with a “we like to try new things at Google, move along, nothing to see”.
A GREAT ESCAPE PLAN…
- they’ve thought about it,
- the story is credible,
- it’s in the open upfront.
Not quite the same. If you ask me, the work sucks. It’s just a tackier, not funny shadow of what their genius campaign of 2010… the same recipe with weaker ingredients. But guess what? A couple of weeks post launch, we learn that no, no, no, that was a trick from the start! Like the New Coke of Old Spice Guys, Fabio was just there so the fans would want Isaiah Mustafa’s return even more. Turns out Fabio wanted to challenge Mustafa for the spice title… and after a few days, he lost.
Of course, this work looks a lot like it would have if the client and agency had realized that Fabio was bombing, and had scrambled to find a fix in a few days.
I guess we’ll never know.
Kudos anyways to P&G and W+K… after putting Old Spice on the radar with a stellar campaign, they managed to keep it there with bad work.
Or with one of the best escape plans seen this year.