Smirnoff: Love

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PICK OF THE WEEK: Smirnoff "Love"

Smirnoff "Love"
OK, the spot actually launched last week, but this new interactive TV effort from JWT/London has other attributes that propel it past such temporal nitpicking and into the position of our inaugural Pick of the (more or less) Week.

As you know by now, the spot for Smirnoff depicts what looks like a relationship-ending moment between a man and a woman that can be followed, and distilled down to different conclusions, using the Sky Digital remote's red button.

Smirnoff has made its product attribute point with style in the past with some very watchable (and award winning) spots like the Traktor-directed "Diamonds" which played up the vodka's "ten times filtered" qualities. Here, the ad digs into the distillation concept in a different, interesting way. The action in the spot, directed by Fredrik Bond-–consisting of a man and his younger wife driving along a winding road and then pulling to the shoulder for a somber exchange overlooking the lights of L.A.-–is low key but it looks good. Good enough for viewers to stop and pursue it. And that's the Pick of the Week point – that if nothing else, the ad is refreshing in that it does two things that we all talk about a whole lot. It invites viewers to proactively engage with a message, by virtue of their curiosity/entertainment nerves being twitched, and it demonstrates educated risk-taking by a marketer (if viewers weren't interested enough to follow the ad's trail, there would be no indication of any brand attachment – the vodka connection isn't revealed until the final version. Smirnoff is hedging its bets by running a variation of the ad on "normal" TV and in theaters, but still).

Agency creatives noted that while there have been other interactive ads on Sky Digital whereby viewers can find out more about the ad's product by pressing the red button, this is the first ad that viewers had to interact with in order to see its conclusion. Viewers, they also noted were able to see the ad via the SKY listings without watching any regular programming.

It's a well executed exploration of creativity in interactive TV - a platform just sitting there waiting to play in the U.K. - and a case study to refer to for that mythical time when the technology is a wide-scale reality here.

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