The Retrospective

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Converse My Drive Thru Ad Campaign

July 29th, 2008 by


By now you’ve either heard the song, seen the ad on TV, or read about it in various publications, but now you can ask your self a serious question- did it work? Jason and I found ourselves at Barcelona a few days ago discussing that very idea. Over the course of a few drinks and a interesting late night dinner (I’m still not sold on the food there) we attacked two main ideas about this campaign.

Jason Reid at Barcelona

First and foremost, Jason made a comment that I hadn’t really taken into consideration- “They are preaching to the converted.”  Upon further investigation I decided that he may be right- look at the line up. If you listen Pharell, Santogold, or Julian Casablancas of The Strokes, you’re part of a  demographic that most likely wears Chucks already. So, did this commercial make you want to get more shoes from the Nike owned company? Probably not. So we asked ourselves- did Converse miss the point?

If you’ve never heard of all three artists, and you’ve never worn or wanted to grab a pair, did this commercial make you want to buy a pair? Again, we didn’t feel like this would stimulate huge sales for the iconic shoe brand. Although we did come to the conclusion that the “Three Artist One Song” collaborations with their shoe may drive more sales over the life of the campaign.

Now the second point, which I think was really overlooked, was, once again, the attack on the status quo of the music industry. Converse pretty much funded this entire project meaning there was no label involved despite licensing their artist out for the project. The national video, which is airing everywhere, is exposing people to the three artists and they may not capture certain demographics- the end run in most of the label mumbo-jumbo gets thrown out.

As mentioned earlier, Converse will be funding original tracks by artists and using them as they see fit. This isn’t the first time a brand has commissioned original works from an artist for it’s line and certainly won’t be the last.  More and more people are finding original music through non-conventional means. Sure the MTV 10-second-attention-span generation isn’t reading through music blog after music blog but, they are spending money on things like video games, movies and even apparel which is proving that more people aren’t buying CD’s but getting their music fix elsewhere.

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