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Google Superbowl Ad: Fishing for Parody?

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Even if you didn’t watch the Superbowl, you probably know about Google’s Parisian Love ad. Google’s ad wasn’t flashy or shocking- it was simple love story told through screen shots of Google’s search service. Some advertising pundits have suggested that the Google ad was a direct response to threats from Microsoft’s Bing search service.

…but could there have been another ulterior motive for making such a simple and engaging ad?

A couple of days after the Superbowl, Mashable ran an article about parodies that had popped up in the wake of Parisian Love. Is it possible that the marketing masterminds at Google intentionally created an ad they thought would spawn parody?

Since the ad debuted on the Superbowl, hundreds of spoofs have popped up on YouTube. A simple YouTube search shows that the Tiger Woods, Sarah Palin, Stalker parodies and their ilk have garnered more than 700,000 views. This means that almost a quarter of the views stemming from this high-profile Superbowl ad come from user-generated parodies (Parisian Love received over 1M views on YouTube before the Superbowl debut).

Even though the spoofs poke fun at the original ad, they still demonstrate the advantages of the Google search product. Does this signal a trend in which professional marketers create advertising in the hopes that users across the internet will collaborate to get the message out?

It just might be the case that Google, who own YouTube, anticipated these spoofs.

Meme E

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