Friday, September 27, 2013

Ads: The Scarecrow

Chipotle (a restaurant I love) has been circulating this amazing CG animated short film called "The Scarecrow" as part of a viral marketing campaign.  When I stumbled across it, I initially thought it was a short film from some festival circuit.  When I realized it was an ad, I was a bit gobsmacked.

The mexican food company has created a wonderful  which was made to promote its mission to serve sustainably raised food. Along with the short they've released a free mobile game for Apple devices that "encourages consumers not to eat processed food and follows a scarecrow’s search for healthier options."

This ad features some seriously high-end production values, but, maybe precisely because this is such a slick commercial, not everyone is digging the message behind the ad.  Early reactions call the ad a "vegetarian bait-and-switch" while Funny Or Die released a parody lampooning the ad.  I understand the sentiment.  Chipotle is not the first brand that comes to mind when I think of going meat-free.  Nonetheless, it's all but inevitable, give the success of such campaigns, that Chipotle’s Scarecrow Mobile App Is The Future Of Business Communication

Ads are becoming entertainment.  Think about it.  Samsung spends something like eight billion (yes, with a "b") on advertising annually, but thinking back, how well do you remember the last Samsung commercial you saw?  Probably not all that well.  Meanwhile, Dos Equis and Captain Morgan commercials get posted to the web as entertainment.  This could be a dangerous trend or it could be bless-ed relief for consumers sick to death of the constant barrage of  monotonous marketing.  It's definitely a topic to keep an eye on in the future.

According to Variety, this is the first of many new pieces of entertainment-based content that Chipotle will roll out next year further attacking Big Food. They plan "to produce four dark comedies under the 'Farmed and Dangerous' name for online platforms that promote better eating, especially among younger Millennials."

"Watch "The Scarecrow," the companion film for Chipotle's new app-based game. Then download the free app at and join the quest for wholesome, sustainable food.

The song "Pure Imagination" performed by Grammy Award®--winning artist Fiona Apple, is available for download on iTunes."

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