Alton Brown Knows What Time It Is
Thursday, November 02, 2006 | posted by Mike
And, thanks to a new online advertising campaign from the Food Network and their partner Agency.com, Alton will be able to tell you what’s coming up next whenever you happen to see one of the web ads. According to a press release on the Agency.com site:
The campaign doesn’t advertise any specific show, but rather it advertises every show. Each unit uses a flash program to read each computer’s system clock and deliver tune-in information for the next upcoming or current show.A little bit of explanation as to why this is interesting from a “customization” standpoint…
The online ads show a caricature of Alton Brown through a combination of photography and illustration as he asks various food trivia questions. The potential answers scroll across the screen and invites the user to guess the correct answer. If they select the correct one, Alton provides them with a brief background and history to the answer. Users can then click-through to Alton’s page on FoodNetwork.com.
As I’m sure you know, companies like the Food Network work with advertising agencies to come up with a creative advertising campaign. In this case, it was a series of Internet advertisements. Then, the company would then take that “creative” and use an agency to place the spots on web sites that will attract the kind of visitors who would be interested in the topic of the campaign. (Sometimes they use the same agency, although many corporations buy the advertising in bulk through one of a few large agencies to get a discount.)
The catch here is that, with online marketing, it’s easy to decide what kind of sites on which to run the spot, but it’s difficult to “customize” the ads to know what is showing on the Food Network when Joe Blow logs on to the site from his home computer.
As it says in the release, the ad checks your desktop’s clock to find out what time it is in your neck of the woods, compares that to the Food Network schedule for your time zone and lets you know what’s coming up.
I think this is pretty cool, assuming that “Li’l Cartoon Alton” can’t also tell that I’m sitting at my computer covered in Pop-Tart crumbs and wearing sweatpants.
Labels: Alton Brown