If there were awards handed out for the most irritating adverts, Confused.com would certainly be up there with the best, or worst, of them. Their most recent campaign saw their adverts use extremely close angles, ‘sets’ that were designed to be cartoon-like and dialogue that mentioned Confused.com every other sentence, Confused.com.
In November, they hired a new ad agency, Farm, after doing their ads in-house for the nine years of their existence. The new agency has launched their first advert which is currently gracing our TV screens promoting the newly redesigned Confused.com website. Here, in all it’s glory, is the full cinematic version.
What you’ll immediately notice is the style has drastically changed. The shots are now amateur-like, shot with webcams, and we’re made to believe that the actors in the ad are ordinary people who have submitted videos of themselves going onto the new website and extolling its virtues. The aim of this is to encourage viewers to think that these are people, just like you and me, who have found the new layout ever so useful, and been so happy about it that they’ve let the company know all about it. These videos just happen to find their way into an advert.
This is a ‘good’ idea, in some respects. It gives the audience the feeling that if the ‘ordinary’ people in the ad like the new site, they will too. We’re made to feel on a par with these guys and they are harmless – it’s not really advertising at all, we’re made to think, it’s all real!
Joking aside, Farm have picked up on a hot trend right now – UGC, or perceived UGC, advertising. Look at the Doritos advert not so long ago, it was all UGC. The general premise was a competition for you to make their advert, got some cash and the advert was plays on our TV screens. Doritos interact with fanbase, Doritos get cheap advert, fanbase gets money, fanbase feels interacted with, everyone applauds, Doritos get a gold star, thanks very much.
By putting together a perceived UGC advert, Farm make it look like Confused.com are interacting with their customers, showing them as a happy approachable kind of company. it also shows marketeers that Farm know what’s hot in the social sphere and is also a good advert for them as an agency.
As an advert, I still find it as annoying as the previous, but as a showcase of advertising trendspotting, it’s very good indeed. If it works, we’ll find out soon enough if Confused.com reveal the increase in hits and revenue. Or not.