Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Arby's - Slow Advertising

Arby's (which is a fast food chain in the US) recently launched their new Smokehouse Brisket sandwich.  The process of making the brisket includes smoking it for 13 hours, but some consumers questioned whether it was actually smoked for that long or was just a marketing ploy.  Arby's (and their agency, Fallon) decided to answer their critics and also tap into the slow TV movement by running a 13 hour TV commercial (though it only ran in one market... Duluth, Minnesota).  They also live streamed the commercial online (is it really livestreaming if you're playing something which isn't actually live?) which garnered a larger audience than you'd expect (15,000+ people).

Perhaps you think this is just a stunt and perhaps you're correct, but equally Arby's could be tapping into a movement that's been bubbling below the surface for sometime.  That movement is called Slow TV.  In Norway for instance, several of the highest rated shows in recent years include a 10-hour show following a train journey from Oslo to Bergen, an 18-hour broadcast of salmon spawning and a five-day broadcast of a cruise ship travelling through the Norwegian Fjords.  There's clearly an audience for slow TV and perhaps it's something advertisers should be tapping into more.  Kia's 5 hour long super slo-mo Superbowl Ad of Adriana Lima waving a flag had more than 2 million views before they took the video down.  A quick search of YouTube yields dozens of log fire videos several hours in length each with a significant number of views.  If you do find yourself with 13 spare hours and would like to see the process of a brisket being smoked, then check out the video below