People tend to see traditional marketing and online marketing as two separate things. But constantly we see examples of the fact that they are really not that different. A good “traditional” marketing campaign such as the one I’m going to write about today: the IKEA‘s public showroom, will become widely discussed online. Just as well as the campaign I talked about before by Volkswagen: the fun theory will be discussion face to face.
When the marketing is interesting enough, it wont matter were or when it is, people will speak about them at anytime they have the opportunity and share with people both online and offline. Thus viral does not have to be online and mouth to mouth does not have to be offline.
I have mentioned before that IKEA used Obama’s message of change in their commercials they had advertisement reading “Embrace change.” Though in their case it was more implying of a redecoration than a political change. However, what I had not mentioned was that they build an mock up oval office in the union station in Washington DC. The mock up featured low cost solutions to furnish an oval office, and gave visitors a chance to sit in the executives chair of course monitored by their secret service officers.
A few days ago they did the public showroom again, but this time in Paris. Between the 10th and the 24th of March four of the Paris metro stops are furnished with sofas for the travellers to use while waiting for the metro. The walls are covered with showroom examples and the furniture have price tags. I do not know about you, but I have waited for the Paris metro, and I for sure, would have appreciated these sofas.
So what is what is so great about this marketing campaign? Well, except for the obvious benefit for the travellers to have a place to sit and something to look at the advantages are many.
- Something to do while waiting - Most people get really bored while waiting for the metro, if they do not have music or a book to occupy them. Thus, having something to read or do while waiting is appreciated, and we also tend to actually “take in” what we are reading, as anything is more fun to do, than just wait…
- Playing with more senses - Instead of only giving us something to look at, they also give us the opportunity to feel, touch and try the furniture they are selling, which gives us a better idea of what we are getting if we buy it.
- It is memorable - How many times have to sat in a sofa while waiting for the metro? Not that many, nor in any other public place either. Thus, it is unusual enough to mention to a friend, who might just remember that she need a few things for IKEA, and head over there the next they… BAAM! conversion …
- People talk about it both online and offline - If you search on any of these campaigns on Google you will find thousands of mentions, if you look at the local newspapers you will find articles about the events as well and if you speak to any of the locals I’m sure many of them will have a few things to say as well. Showing that new ideas does spread everywhere.
Create an online point – to !
I don’t know if IKEA planned any online activities for the Paris metro stations displays, but for the oval office, they complemented the offline showroom with the ability to design your own oval office on their website. Giving people a easy ”point to” when they want to discuss the subject online, is also a great idea to stimulate the buzz in the online media sphere. Actually, most people who have talked about the oval office event choose to show a picture of the online showroom as this was more available for the general public.