Sony Playstation Promo, Case study NEW ZEALAND COPYCATS by Deutsch Los Angeles

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Industry Video Games/Consoles
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Market New Zealand
Agency Deutsch Los Angeles
Released September 2012

Credits & Description

Category: Technology and Manufacturing
Product/Service: PS3 COMMERCIAL
Group Creative Director: Jason Elm (Deutsch LA)
Group Creative Director: Michael Bryce (Deutsch LA)
Copywriters: Josh Fell / Jeff Candido (Deutsch LA)
Art Directors: Ryan Dickey / Bernie O'Dowd (Deutsch LA)
Director of Integrated Production: Vic Palumbo (Deutsch LA)
Director of Broadacast Production: Victoria Guenier (Deutsch LA)
Producers: Jim Haight / Todd Krolczyk / Scarlett Butler (Deutsch LA)
Media placement: @TheKevinButler Twitter Account - Twitter - July 22, 2010
Media placement: Kevin Butler Blog - Press Release - - July 22, 2010

Summary of the Campaign
New Zealand television network TV3 made a direct copy of our PS3 Kevin Butler "Mon tage" commercial. Instead of playing the standard role of the corporate bully and suing them, PlayStation took the high road, and spun the incident into free worldwide brand awareness. It started with a blog post in which Kevin chided the network for "borrowing" his ad and offered constructive criticism on how to better do it next time. With that simple blog post, a few tweets and a sea of online sharing from the PlayStation Nation, Kevin Butler not only received an apology, the PS3 was named the official console of New Zealand.

The Situation
TV3 made an exact copy of our PlayStation 3 "Montage" spot - an act that most companies would sue over. We decided to turn this inconvenient problem into an international opportunity.

The Goal
The goal of the campaign was to spin a potential lawsuit into free positive publicity. We knew that gamers expected PlayStation to act like the big corporate bullies and start a legal war. We wanted to avoid falling into the stereotype and instead flip their expectation on its head with a surprising, fun response.

The Strategy
Our plan was to address this issue not through legal channels, but instead through the public relations megaphone that is an official PlayStation statement. But not a statement like any you'd seen before. We wanted to surprise TV3 and gamers everywhere and challenge their perception of how corporations act.

We began with a lighthearted, almost flattered, press release from Kevin Butler that was published on the PlayStation Blog and seeded with gaming news sites. In addition Kevin reached out to TV3 through twitter messages, making nice while offering some friendly advice. When TV3 responded to our statement by sending a friendship basket full of New Zealand products and a plaque proclaiming PS3 the Official Console of New Zealand, we applauded them through twitter and another round of stories covered the reconciliation.

Documented Results
What could have been perceived as another case of corporate bullying was instead turned into a surprising PR win for all involved. But don't take our word for it, take the gamers:

"Take that courtrooms! There is a new brand of justice, and its name is Butler"

"Kevin Butler is the key to world peace!!"

"I love this reaction. Humor and no lawsuit? How often do you see this sort of thing today?"

Finally, PlayStation was named the Official Console of New Zealand, complete with a plaque to prove it.