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chevy_contest.jpgShowing that Ad Age understands about as much about social media as the big ad agencies it serves, they rave about General Motors new online contest where consumers can pretend to create ads for Chevy Tahoe:

“Joining the new trend of consumer-created advertising, GM is asking viewers to make and submit a 30-second spot for its Tahoe truck.”

Umm, no, actually GM is letting consumers “create” canned commercials. Players can add their own text to video clips provided by Chevy and drop them into a canned commercial with a choice of canned sound tracks. Then they can watch the commercial they’ve “created.”
Clearly, GM, or, more likely its ad agency, doesn’t realize that the public is capable of producing incredibly creative, accomplished work. Take a look at consumer-created ads on YouTube, for example.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: message control is, and always was, nothing more than an illusion. Let that tired old idea go!
The contest was announced on last night’s The Apprentice episode which we didn’t watch.