A real-life teenage Alexa stars in eBay's snarky ad targeting Amazon Prime Day

The video piles on the digs ahead of the annual summer shopping event

Published On
Jul 12, 2019

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EBay throws so much shade at Amazon in its new spot that the screen might go black. Ahead of Amazon’s annual Prime Day sales event, which will run for two days for the first time starting on Monday, retailers have been busy plotting their own sales and promotions to ensnare the deal-hungry summer shopper.

Two weeks ago, eBay announced its Crash Sale, a slew of “can’t miss deals on some of the season’s top items” taking place on July 15, the first day of Amazon’s shopping holiday. If calling its sale a Crash Sale wasn’t snarky enough—the name is a not-so-subtle dig at the Seattle retail giant’s glitch-ridden Prime Day last year, which was rife with website crashes—eBay is doubling down with its new video. The 60-second spot, which the San Jose, California-based company began airing on social channels on Thursday, features a real-life teenager named Alexa educating her dad about Prime Day. “Prime Day is a holiday Amazon totally made up to get people excited about their parade of deals,” real-life Alexa says, using air-quotes on the word “parade.” “At least real parades don’t charge a membership fee,” she adds, noting that the deals include “random stuff nobody really wants.” She then tells her dad about eBay’s Crash Sale, which will include deals on smartphones, gaming systems and cool dad sneakers.

Indeed, Amazon was criticized for its first Prime Day back in 2015, which disappointed consumers with discounts on oddities like garbage bags and tubs of lubricant. However, since then, the annual bonanza has grown to become the brand’s biggest shopping day. Last year, Amazon said members bought more than 100 million products.

This year, experts expect another blockbuster. Amazon could generate some $5.8 billion in global product sales on this year’s 48-hour event, up from an estimated $3.9 billion last year, according to Coresight Research. Along with eBay, Target and Walmart are also piling on the deals.

Ebay is no stranger to taking jabs at its competitor. Last year, the marketer touted more than 100 deals priced at $119—the cost of an Amazon Prime membership—while promoting its own lack of membership. The Crash Sale is part of eBay’s larger summer effort, which includes a new brand outlet of discounted brands such as Tiffany & Co. and Adidas. The new Crash Sale video was created by Edelman. It will be shared on social channels including Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. A spokeswoman from Amazon did not immediately return a request for comment.

Near the spot’s end, eBay can’t resist one last dig. The dad asks Alexa, “How do you know all of this?” She replies, “I’m always listening.” Ouch.