Friday, April 24, 2009

Subway Blows A Great Opportunity

Subway’s newest commercial features “real” people singing the famous/infamous “5 dollar foot long” song. They sing their own rendition of the song in front of a blue, Subway branded wall. As the spot progresses, a message compelling viewers to visit comes on screen. Upon watching this commercial and visiting the site, I was thoroughly disappointed in Subway.

The “real” people in the commercial and on the site don’t feel real. Even subway calls the videos “auditions” and that’s exactly what they feel like. It all feels very contrived. If authenticity is what you are looking for, and when you go to user generated content it should be, you need to have an organic feeling to it. At least give me some background information on the “auditions”. Where did they take place? When did they take place? Who are these people? Are they just people pulled off the street? The chorus makes me think there was some type of casting call or at least an announcement that Subway was looking for people to sing.

I think they blew a perfect opportunity to interact with the consumer. Especially since this campaign has been so polarizing. A quick YouTube search brings up dozens of user generated videos of people singing the song in every conceivable situation. Wouldn’t it have been better to use theses videos? Subway could have put out a contest where consumers send in their own rendition of the subway song. Give away a first, second and third place prize as a way of enticing entries if you think you wouldn’t get enough user generated content.

What do you think about this commercial and the accompanying site? How could they have made it better?

-The Ultimate Account Guy

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