June 21, 2010

Gatorade Listens But Doesn’t Hear

We just saw something that made our blood boil — and we’re not saying that ’cause it’s a 90º June day.

Gatorade put a promo piece (?) together for it’s new Mission Control, a small room with a bunch of monitors, it appears from the video, where ‘G’  will monitor all social media, web analytics, and, presumably, the negative impression this blogger had for its latest brand-blob.
Viral, social, online in general, has finally done a very nice job of toppling the old one-way, mass media communication to put the dialogue between brand and consumer on a more equal footing.   
Discussion oriented, possibly.  Channel busting, certainly.  
We praise the ability of consumers to now actually voice concerns, or praise, and move away from the corporate behemoth feel of something being shoved down one’s throat that sometimes our advertising brethren helped to engender.
And that’s where this “G” piece SO misses.  
Don’t talk to us in big bold type about your gigantic mission hub of social monitoring.  It’s the exact opposite of what you’re claiming you’re trying to do.
Mission Control watching all things digital about your brand is big brother.  It’s corp speak.  It’s NOT a conversation.  
And it sure as hell isn’t cool.
Plus, it is all about message and bluster and not about product or how you, Gatorade, are going to improve my life with your product.  Sure, there’s one quick mention about product, but it’s lost under the lame license-free sounding music track.
If this shows us anything, it’s about what can happen when a big brand that has been built on big brand ads and big endorsement deals doesn’t know what to do in the new 2-way communication world…when the little guy is more in charge.
If only electrolytes helped with marketing thinking, maybe ‘G’ wouldn’t be as ‘L A M E.’