Dear Mr(s). Fedex marketing executive,
1. What were you thinking?
2. What’s the point?
3. Did you test these before releasing them?
4. How did you pick Fred Willard…?
5. What’s the point?
If these videos were created by a local company trying to establish themselves in a tough local courier market I would be inclined to think WOW, these guys put a lot of time and money into this series – good first effort and I’m sure you’ll learn from this one and do better next time. But this is Fedex. A global brand that is struggling financially that should be working really hard at positioning itself against regional and global competitors.
Fedex chose this year to pull out of it’s yearly Superbowl advertising after an 18 year run. I guess they spent the money on this instead. Bummer.
Fedex has created a series of ‘infomercial spoof’ videos that were obviously intended for ‘viral distribution’. These will never be anything close to viral. Fedex has launched a YouTube channel called `Getinfoatained` to house these videos. I am always surprised (and honestly frustrated) when huge international brands with huge international budgets miss the mark on such a grand scale.
Contrast these videos with the excellent series of whiteboard commercials that UPS developed recently. The UPS videos are simple, easy to understand, represent the company well and communicate very effectively the specific points that each video is designed to deliver. By contrast these Fedex videos are waaaay over the top and Fedex just comes off looking like they are trying far to hard to entertain. I imagine there is some real information in there somewhere but I’d be surprised if recall tests on these ads produced anything more than acknowledgement of Fred Willard being campy. If there is any branding value delivered I would guess it is negative. There is nothing good here to associate with Fedex - they aren`t funny, engaging, shocking, or interesting. Perhaps the worst criticism is that they would have been more effective if they were a little bit worse because at least then more people would have been talking about them.
My recommendation would be to pull them quickly and start over.