advertising and other stuff. no, really.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Tron advertising and marketing, may I help you?

Agency called Crayon launched today in virtual world Second Life. Started by Joe Jaffe and a few others, it’s positioned to take his new media approach and apply it to an agency setting in that fast-growing online community site.

Steve over at Adrants gives what I would say is a balanced assessment of the Crayon introduction in SL and what it may mean, and there’s subsequent follow-up discussions by some SL apostles on Soflow.

Anyway, others have gone or are going virtual as well, including the recent Open Intelligence Agency from Russell Davies. I like the approach. Ideas and people are what matter, not their setting. As long as you have an internet connection, there’s no restriction on where you can work. (We’re half-virtual now as it is. Who here hasn’t written up or reviewed concepts or presentations and emailed them from hotel rooms on the road?)

But after reading some of the comments and an article from one SL voice of the people, brands and now an agency that rush in to stake their real estate claims need to tread lightly. Like the real world, the NIMBY mindset is present: people don’t mind commerce, they just don’t want it in their backyard, even if it’s a virtual one.

I would hate to see an upstart agency suffer the wrath of the very community it lives in though. That’s a real world concern as much as a virtual one. Blend in, don’t stick out and piss off your neighbors. This should first be about: we’ve got good ideas, we’re here for the long haul, and what better space than a virtual one to dovetail with what we’re about.

Otherwise, isn’t it like the moving truck that rolls up one day: introverted teen wearing a Colbain t-shirt, sitting on the lawn and ripping grass out next to scattered boxes. Obnoxious mom yelling at the pit bull heading your way. Her husband just tore up your lawn because he’s busy eyeing the tools in your garage he plans on never returning. There goes the neighborhood and Bob’s your uncle.

To be honest, I don’t agree with some of the other new media pundits out there who herald every 2.0 invention as the next great thing. (As an AD in this life, I’ve spent a lot of late nights and weekends working ‘the next big thing’ into the upcoming Monday morning pitch from a white knight consultant there to save the day, only to watch the agency lose out because the bottom line was too rich for the client’s blood.)

Although I disagree the :30 is dead, Jaffe does have some interesting concepts and observations, (and one in particular regarding time-shifting. I think this is a tactic that could really change consumer experiences if brands take it beyond what’s happening now.) Hate to see it fail just because the neighborhood association got together and voted them off the block.

It’s great to have a funky location, be it NYC or through your ISP. But pretty soon, I think every brand will have access to good ideas from one or two people on the other end of an IM session while they both review the deck that was just emailed. Oh shit, wait, I just did that yesterday.

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Anonymous said...

Look at Jaffe's profile on SL "Divo Dapto". The guy can hardly walk in a straight line - definite newbie. "Walking the Talk" ... I think not!

Make the logo bigger said...

I tried viewing it but Firefox and SL aren’t getting along tonight for some reason, getting error messages. I did look at pics of it yesterday though from crayonville.

It’ll be interesting to see whether the community there settles down or not. My guess is it will eventually. I gotta think an influx of commerce helps everybody there.