Having a little bit of fun with an ad

I was working on an ad pointing out the benefits of buying a bike from Chain Reaction Bicycles, for altruistic reasons, of course! It started as way too much text, boring stuff that nobody would get through reading. The reality is that you’ve got to say everything you need in maybe 7 lines, that’s it. I had maybe 200.

I could have tried to distill it down to 7 ideas, with the ability to click on each one for more info, but that’s cheating. Then I remembered these goofy animations anyone can create on the ‘net, where you have these characters that you write words for. The website is www.xtranormal.com. So I threw something together which you can see here-

I’m not sure if it’s too over-the-top or not enough. Obviously, the point is to highlight some reasons why you should buy a bike from Chain Reaction Bicycles, and obviously, it expresses some frustrations I’ve had dealing with customers who value a great deal on an inappropriate bike (maybe wrong fit, maybe wrong type) as being more important than our dedication to making sure you get the right bike, the right fit, and maintaining a sense of ownership & responsibility for that bike for as long as you own it.

Let me know what you think!  –Mike–

6 thoughts on “Having a little bit of fun with an ad

  1. Cheers. Like it and the message is delivered credibly. The sharp humor is spot on. Lord knows, you have to be some sort of better man than I am to do it right in retail. Unless you can make it more visually entertaining per se, I would try to cut it down to a minute or so. Somewhere in the middle, the revisiting of what the guy actually paid and what he really got could be cut or rewritten – as is, it doesn’t add much and is sort of confusing. I think I get the point, but it could be clearer. Can you add more visual interest? Images of bikes? CR logo at some point (e.g. smart buyer’s jersey)? It is still essentially words. You make all-good points, but the process takes a while and there could be a more of a plot payoff, such as a conclusive visual image to go along with the happy ending for the smart customer while the resolutely foolish one insists on suffering needlessly. What is the simple, memorable take-away? At what point is that established? Along with the message that cycling should be fun and not painful or ridiculously compromised, you could emphasize that at CR, you get great value fair and square, and no attitude no matter what your level of experience and budget. That seems implicit, but I would avoid leaving room for “we do it ‘right’ and you will pay accordingly” as some shops seem to represent. If you get a good response, maybe you could do a series of shorter versions, each hitting just one of the main points?

    1. Jeff: You are correct on all counts! I don’t know if I can add visuals etc to make it more relevant & interesting, but I’m going to look into it. You’re seeing about 90 minutes of invested time so far… I’m trying to figure out how much more is worth investing. Is this just a one-trick-pony, good for a laugh, or a legit communications medium? How quickly does it get old?

      I think a strict 2-minute limit would be a good idea, and it also looks to be a great way to “script” video with real live people. Something I’ve thought to be a good idea, but where do you start? That whole blank sheet of paper thing… this gets you past that very nicely (why, I don’t know, but it somehow gets you feeling creative pretty quickly). Thanks greatly for your input! –Mike–

      1. Hi Mike,

        With your longstanding penchants for observations, images and thoughtful commentary — and now you turn out to be a humorist — you will no doubt explore some nifty ways to take advantage of the possibilities. Thanks for the Almost-Daily reading for all these years, and it will be fun to see what you get into.


  2. So I was at an indoor cycling class tonight and had a similar conversation with one of the guys. I was on my ‘b’ bike (that you guys fit for me) on the stand trainer, and he was on some high-zoot carbon fiber something or other on his trainer. He couldn’t make it all the way through the class due to knee pain. I think he said something about recently having a Dalai Llama bike fit, but needing to go back to get it dialed in….

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