The Marketing world has evolved; direct messages aren’t considered that compelling anymore. Exciting the curiosity of viewers, making them confused, attract more people and attention to the product or content.
With the number of advertisements people see on a daily basis, the viewers feel the need to be challenged, to make them question what the ad is really about. Mystery and aroused curiosity, make people more engaged and pay more attention to the ad.
Los Angeles and New York woke up to white billboards, free of branding and images, with just black letters saying that “NETFLIX IS A JOKE”.
These mysterious banners left all passerby and people confused and bewildered because many of the locations had previously hosted billboards advertising Netflix content. It soon became all over the internet, talking about insults or defamation from competitors.
The streaming giant remained silent and refused to comment on this mysterious campaign for two weeks. It turned out that they teamed with a small agency called Battery for their new service. The billboards were the teasing campaign that they unveiled during the primetime of the Emmy Awards, saying that Netflix invested more in comedy. It featured Dave Chappelle, Ellen DeGeneres, Chris Rock, and Jerry Seinfeld. Who’ve all signed on to star in Netflix stand-up specials—crash scenes from Netflix original programming.
They later changed the billboards from plain white to celebrities’ pictures, leaving the same text, Netflix is a joke. The advertisement was released, it was a 60-second spot crash scene. Comedians appeared in scenes from popular Netflix original dramas like “House of Cards,” “Stranger Things,” “The Crown,” and “Orange Is the New Black.”
Netflix invested a lot to own this new section “Stand-up comedy” that HBO dominated previously. The deals with comedians were in the range of 11 million dollars – 20 million dollars.
This campaign was successful and caught the attention of a lot of people generating an uproar and many discussions. Especially that it was made by a small agency Battery who won a Bronze Clio for this campaign.
Credits Client: Netflix Agency: Battery, Hollywood, USA Creative Directors: Joseph Shands