Technology is our friend: Why aren't more brands doing this?
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September 4, 2013

Why aren't more brands doing this?

I really like the Android/Kitkat cooperation. A real experiment in branding, and also a nice extension for Kitkat with a package integration of Android and a sweepstake for 1.000 Nexus and 25.000 Google-Play-Coupons for 5 Euros. Kitkat even redesigned their whole website for that purpose, playing along with those nice candy/OS/mobile phone word plays. All this in an alleged no-money-deal is exciting enough.

But one other thing while watching the beautifully made Youtube-Video they produced caught my attention:
The commercial ends with search terms. Why aren't more brands doing this? Do they really still think that people will type "www.brandname-promotionpage.com/product" in their browser, especially on a smartphone or tablet?


Since many years brands have been integrating their homepage domains (or, in most cases being terribly wrong, a different promotion domain) in their tv commercials. Then, a few years back, many brands included their Facebook page instead. And I bet that >90% of the fans they gained went to Facebook and searched for the respective page instead of directly trying to access it through their browsers. There was a brief period around the Olympics - but maybe that was just accidental - where I noticed many brands including a hashtag instead of a domain. But why don't all of them just name the best working search terms for their purpose?

I have a client whose traffic during the 30 minutes after a TV commercial (evenings) is >70% mobile. Meaning: People see the commercial on TV and use their smartphone or tablet to check on the offer. But still, most of the traffic comes via Google. Especially in a world where the "shift to mobile" (Link: German, from October 2012) continues to accelerate, domain names may be even harder to type in. Why not simply search, which is accessible through one touch on almost any mobile device?

So this is how the Youtube video looks like:

And this is how it ends:
"Search Android Kitkat" - now that's way cooler than "www.android.com/kitkat". One could argue: Well, this is Google, they will place their site prominently on top of that search result page. They didn't. This is what my search result page looked like (ipad):
There are two news on top. They could lead to bad press (if there were any). And then, as the third result, there's the brand page. When it comes to driving traffic to your website, I can imagine that this may be way more effective than simply showing a domain. Because most people will google your page anyway.
I simply wonder why I saw this only in 2013. And not since 2005. Maybe many others have been doing it, and I don't watch enough TV commercials anymore? Advertising the best search terms for your brand is probably serving the customer better than simply publishing your domain. Yes, the customers may find news articles that may not be 100% in your favour. Yes, they may even find competition. But since most of them would be googling you anyway, this would apply to them, too. Plus, memorizing two words instead of a domain consisting of two words is probably easier. And on top of that, especially on mobile, googling something may seem a lower obstacle to overcome than opening your browser and typing in a domain, since a search window is deeply baked in on Android and iOS devices.
I like it.


PS: Heres the Youtube commercial in case you want to watch it.