Over the weekend, Mercedes-Benz UK test-drove the first-ever TV-to-Twitter crossover, putting The X Factor viewers behind the metaphorical wheel. To promote their 2013 A-Class line, Mercedes created a 3-part series of commercial advertisements, encouraging viewers to tweet using the #YOUDRIVE hashtag.Much like those "Choose Your Own Adventure" books, Mercedes' commercials began with two segments during which viewers could tweet certain hashtags, along with the #YOUDRIVE tag in order to help determine how the third segment would turn out. The hashtag receiving the most tweets determine the third concluding segment.
In an industry where television represents the old way of the entertainment industry, and social media, the new, Mercedes latest campaign takes a revolutionary step toward blending the two mediums. Not only do these theatrical commercials draw attention to the product at hand, but also the usage of Twitter to incite engagement brings viewer attention right back to their mobile device or nearby laptop. Many turn their attention back to their computers and smartphones during the commercial breaks, and Mercedes' strategy attempts to capitalize on such habits. This marketing campaign promotes brand and product awareness, while also initiating a social conversation via crowdsourcing to further entice potential customers.
Will other companies hop on the bandwagon, and will such interactive advertisements make their way to the U.S. any time soon? Considering TV and Twitter don't appear to be going anywhere, only time will tell how we will come to interact with brands in the future.
To catch a glimpse of Mercedes' A-Class ads, check out the commercial trailer below. Or, to test drive the Mercedes-Benz social experience yourself, visit the YOURDRIVE YouTube channel and explore what this TV spot has to offer.