Brand: Sprint Wireless Music Downloads (Sprint-Nextel)
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A girl and a guy are sitting on a sofa. He’s watching a game, she is staring at her cellphone. “Sprint lets me download music whenever I want,” she says, “I have a song for everything.” The guy sighs knowingly, “No you don’t.” She rolls her eyes and presses a button on her phone. A song starts, “I’m so sick of your stupid blue sweaters and pathetic argyle socks..” which he is in fact wearing and goes on to deconstruct him down to the gap between his teeth and bad breath. As the guy makes to leave the room the spot quickly cuts to a text screen saying “Sprint wireless music downloads.” The song chides the guy for running home to his mommy and as he looks back, defeated, the spot ends with the Sprint (together with Nextel) logo.
A classic problem/solution ad with a twist. Here the problem is an annoying guy and the solution is downloadable music. This is a pool-out spot from a campaign that has had several executions. The humor here is the twist on ‘a song for everything.’ In the earlier spots, the ‘song for everything’ would be a recognizable song that just happened to be perfect for the occassion. Here Sprint takes a step further with a song that really is perfect for the moment and outrageously, patently fake at the same time. The humor works because it reinforces the selling proposition of the brand.
Sprint takes care to reinforce the branding with the ‘Sprint’ mention in the first line of the dialogue as well as the cut-screen 2/3 of the way through before the end logo.
This advertising blog has been a fan of Sprint and Nextel advertising, which has been excellent recently. We are most impressed by how simple and pared-down these ads are. They mostly feature one setup (that is to say that the action takes place in one location – making the spot cheaper to shoot) and are dead simple in intention. The spots stay close to the product benefits but are humorous and memorable without losing the brands.
As hard as Sprint tries, the task of linking this spot to the brand is difficult, because as a brand, Sprint does not really stand for anything (other than cheap calls) with consumers. This is a fault of the brand, not the agency, but it makes it more likely that this ad will be a category spot and just help all the phones with wireless music downloads.
We could also have done without the nose hair.
Branding Bottom Line:
Sprint really does have a song for everything. We’re getting our girlfriend a Cingular phone.