In the category of amazing media buys, here’s an offering from Chevy for the Volt. It’s called “Chevy Volt Journey” and it takes fairly simple (if old-school and frequently shitty) digital implementations – frames and expandable banners – and turns them on their head.
NB: I pitched this internally at a previous job and was vigorously shot down by the media department. That was a big bummer. “NB” ≠ not bitter. Anyway.
Click the banners and you get something you’re probably interested in. Amazing.
The nuts and bolts of it are as follows:
- Chevy has purchased media and development across the network of Federated Media (FM) sites
- For their dollars, they get to put FM content into a branded, expandable frame that doesn’t send you to a Chevy Volt microsite or configurator, but rather to something else you’re likely to be interested in
- If you expand the frame-banner-jobby, you get a set of sliders that allow you to customize the content that appears in the the frame, thus personalizing your “Journey”
- The sliders relate to key attributes of the Volt, and you can’t turn all of them on at the same time. Because that’s not the way content works:
- Volt (of course)
- And because FM has so many awesome sites for the somewhat affluent, interested-in-design-and-digital-and-the-environment types, you’re highly likely to click into something excellent
They even did it with the rich media. Interestingly enough, you can’t click from these banners to a Chevy-owned domain. Because that doesn’t matter whatsoever.
Why? If people want a Volt, they know where to go to find information. They don’t need a banner to tell them where to go. But if StumbleUpon, Percolate and Google Currents are any indicator – and I think they are – people do need advice on places to find content they’re likely to enjoy.
Two lessons: first, make your media dollars do something for your target audience, not just for you; second, look to inspiration from currently successful digital things when you design your own.
Nice work, Chevy media people, wherever you are.