Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The real originators of social networking?

Maybe not, but I think Coleman is on the money with this new campaign.

Great idea and they were able to pull off the message that Coleman invented social networking without coming off as arrogant. This works for Coleman mostly because they are staying true to what the brand really stands for and what it means to people. It’s also nice that their core products don’t get lost in the mix.

The old looking footage (real or not) and tongue in cheek tone help make the ads feel down to earth. On the other hand, I could easily see another brand trying a similar creative idea (alcohol/spirits come to mind) and coming across as egotistical or over the top. Just kind of feels right coming from Coleman.

There are lots of cool ways that they can and are starting to take this idea further. The iPhone apps are a terrific start – lantern and campfire story apps are fun and make sense coming from Coleman. The Facebook group is also a nice way to bring camping enthusiasts together while at the same time tying things back to the brand. Where else could they extend the idea?

A lot of brands are trying to figure out how to join the social media conversation. In an effort not to be left out, it’s easy to run with a “Just do something!” mentality, but misguided attempts can easily do more harm to a brand than just staying on the sidelines. It’s easy to spot a fake and consumers are a lot smarter than many advertisers give them credit. Nice to see a brand doing things in a thoughtful way, and from a credible position.

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