Coming full circle
The best part of the Zoozoos phenomenon is that no one is surprised at their success. From the first spot it was clear that this is going to be huge. It’s one of the best campaigns in recent times, can’t remember anything that comes close. The communication is clear, refreshing, good connect to the service and needless to say clutter-breaking and memorable, clearly the best campaign money can buy.
The campaign has many legs and the PR frenzy is more than understandable. One can’t appreciate the agency and the client enough. I am sure there was an element of risk, now it seems like there was no risk.
The thing that stuck us though is the net effect of the campaign. We were talking to many people around, wanting to know the kind of impact the campaign had on them. Everyone loved the ads, they remembered the service and the story. Then we asked if they feel like subscribing, or have already subscribed for the advertised services. The results were appalling, both on intent and on actual conversions.
The problem is two fold. On one hand, people weren’t persuaded enough to subscribe, and, even if they were persuaded, they couldn’t remember how to activate it (should I call?/ send a SMS?). Expecting people to remember and recall such a long list of response devices is asking for too much.
While there could have been many objectives for the campaign – mind share, bonding scores, salience, owning IPL, and others – there would have been revenue subscription objectives as well, no?
Well, we don’t have the actual numbers and our hypothesis is based on the many quick chats we had with lots of people. Of course, Vodafone would have known by now whether this is getting the cash registers ringing. But from the looks of it, it seems like not many people actually subscribed.
So should we stop advertising?
People are exposed to mass media in a passive state, you are not in buy mode while watching TV. Zoozoos is the best advertising can do? It works best to create awareness, memorability, imagery and preference. Nevertheless, there is a bigger point here about inadequacies of mass media in generating action. Marketers have to do more than spray and pray. All this awareness, interest and desire has to lead to action.
Marketers need to ask the key question, How do we close the loop?
It’s time to look beyond mass media and to understand how behavior can be influenced rather than just creating imagery. This is where we need to embrace learnings from new sciences to create action and deploy interventions when people are in buy/action mode.
There are various channels to connect with the consumer. In case of Vodafone, the phone itself is a big one. Why didn’t Vodafone use the cellphone to close the loop and attract people to their services? Simple strategic SMS blasts could have supported the TV campaign well and created action. Even IVR and Customer Service could have been used to drive default behavior by connecting with the creative campaign.
Yet, the people at Vodafone relied entirely on the TV campaign to see them across. They could have taken the weight off TV with a couple of smart strategic moves. Little nudges are required wherever interventions are possible. It would be such a shame if one doesn’t leverage such a great campaign, for these are rare.
Now that Ogilvy has bettered the pug campaign by creating an even more endearing imagery with the Zoozoos, we have no doubt they will one up this one as well, in due course.
Closing the loop by creating action and influencing behaviour would have been a better way to leverage a brilliant advertising campaign such as this one, won’t you agree?
(Photos sourced from the Zoozoo fan page on facebook)