A subtle technique

This week’s Lesson 6 introduced us to online marketing short films. I was intrigued by the creativity and effectiveness, as well as lack thereof, found in some of these short films. The vast selection and in-depth analysis of the short films selected by my classmates was also very impressive.

As classmate Amanda Bryd said, “The short film can take on many forms for a brand, and in some cases become very popular with audiences.”

Do you remember when Amazon used short films to subtly market products sold on their website?

Four years ago, in November 2004, Amazon debuted on short film per week for four weeks on its homepage. The films ere loosely based on a theme Amazon described as “karmic balance”—the idea that what goes around comes around and that, in the long term, those who do the right thing are rewarded (Sharma).

Items for sale on Amazon's site appeared subtly in the films and in the credits. The company offered users of Amazon Platinum Visa cards received a discount of 5 percent if they purchased products such as home furnishings, cosmetics and jewelry featured in any of the films (Sharma).
The short film series came right in time for the holiday shopping season that year. In my opinion, the campaign was a bold and innovative move for the company. Not only was the campaign unique, but it also directed consumers to Amazon’s Web site even if they had not intended to do any holiday shopping from the there. In addition, the campaign was memorable and fun.


Sharma, Dinesh. “Short films star on Amazon.” CNET News. View the entire article

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