11 November 2010

Here's another great ad campaign, this time from Merillat

Yesterday, I was Tweeting with the great Leah Thayer from Daily 5 Remodel. Leah interviewed me on Tuesday on part of a webinar series she's putting together about social media and the remodeling industry. Part of the sidebar conversation we were having on Tuesday dealt with remodeling industry marketing and advertising and we were continuing in that same vein on Twitter.

I have a relationship with a couple of Masco Brands, most notably Brizo Faucets and KraftMaid Cabinetry. In spite of that I can say without reservation that Masco Brands position themselves exceptionally well and as a whole they are in the forefront of whatever market segment those brands find themselves in.

Leah pointed out to me a video Merillat Cabinetry produced last year and one I'd all but forgotten about. The video in question is a fantastic example of a marketing video done right. Here it is.

Merillat made that video to introduce a contest they ran through 2009 called The Good Life Contest. People were encouraged to make a home video about what The Good Life means to them and the winner would be rewarded a complete kitchen makeover.

The contest went on for the better part of last year and the winning family ended up with the kitchen of their dreams. It was a pretty heart warming promotion.

But I keep coming back to this video. It's really great work and it does a great job of talking about cabinetry indirectly. Merillat's not a brand that's in the headlines very often but for this video and The Good Life contest the ought to be.

So what do you think? Is this kind of indirect marketing effective? Do you think it works? I don't have a dog in this particular race but I think it's an interesting topic. Is Merillat onto something?


  1. Some marketers would say too indirect but I really liked it. Maybe a bit long, waiting for the impending romance. The pure acoustic music introduction moving to a high energy party, with the kitchen as architectural backdrop, is very compelling. I loved how they used a concert for the film's crescendo, then went all the way back to a quiet after-party in the kitchen with the couple...a lot of plot and subplot that kept me engaged. Very cool. Thanks for sharing on your blog!

  2. Thanks Mark, I think it's really smart and a daring move on Merillat's part. I've never seen a cabinet company attempt anything like this. Kudos to Merillat!

  3. Well, OK, here’s comes a little cold water! I personally did not see what it had to do with cabinetry and kitchens. I also could not help noticing that the solo singer that began the ad was just strumming a few chords on his guitar and did not have a particularly fine singing voice or a song actually worth singing. No doubt, that’s the curmudgeon in me, but that was my response to it. Personally, if I’m looking for cabinetry or kitchen ideas, that’s what I would like to see represented. If no one told me they were there to sell cabinets, I never would have known.

    On the other hand, by way of distinct contrast, Toyo is a Japanese maker of kitchens that has one of the slickest sink designs I have ever seen. Because ours is such a small kitchen, I am much enamored of food-preparation-in-the-sink concepts. A simple cutting board that slides back and forth on a track does wonders in that regard, but a fair number of manufacturers have come up with any number of variations on this theme. Toyo took it to the ultimate, and when I first blogged about them back in March, I believe, I embedded a video demonstrating the concept. It was in Japanese, and I didn’t understand a word, but the sink concept was so well-thought-out and so ably demonstrated in the video that it didn’t matter.

    Merillat, to make another abrupt contrast, has a commercial in English that explains nothing, demonstrates nothing, and to me, at least, would sell nothing.

  4. Joeseph, something tells me you're not the target for this particular product video. Merillat is a lower-cost cabinet line and this video's goal is to have Merillat appeal to a 25 to 30 demographic. This video's not intended to educate consumers or to introduce a new product. Merillat has plenty more on their website and on YouTube that do just that.

    This video is a mood piece and it's intention is to set a tone for a younger market. It's other job was to serve as a demo for a home video contest, the theme of which was The Good Life. Through the collateral that surrounded this video, interested contestants could see that this featured video was Merillat's idea of the good life and that they could then interpret the phrase however they saw fit.

    I still maintain that this is an exceptional campaign and it deserved a lot more attention than it got.

  5. The "couple" in the video strikes me as older than 30, so I'm thinking that they're missing their target audience. We see the same shot of one drawer opening and closing that is somewhat uninteresting, as well as the same view of the cabinets throughout the entire video, which is about two minutes too long. I like the song, as well as both of the singers, but I think that the young woman singing "This must be the good life" is more effectively aimed at the 25 to 30 set than the dirty-looking male of indeterminate age. He is not someone you would want to be, but she is. The featured couple is a little meh. The party setting is excellent and the filmmakers incorporate other elements of the "good life" within that context. I think that the viewer is left with a subliminal idea of what is "rich," so it does achieve that objective rather well. It is a brilliant idea because it leaves an impression that the viewer may be completely unaware of. They will make choices that have been influenced by things like this video. So I think it's good, but could be a lot better.

  6. Damn it, this is supposed to be an amen corner.

  7. I'm 40 and this commercial appeals really well to me! As someone who loves to throw parties, I am DROOLING over that kitchen set up and a good part of that reason is that the commercial showed that aspect of use.

  8. Hurray! I'm not the only one. Thanks Lisa. I mean Nim.


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