1. Arts and Entertainment

Live Blogging Oscar Online Marketing

I’ll be including some notes about online media while the Oscars run tonight. Check back to this post repeatedly for updates.

8:45pm (all times EST): Elizabeth Golden Age wins Best Costume (EST)

* Google search for “Elizabeth” brings ad for Liz Claiborne clothing
* Google search for “Elizabeth Golden Age” brings up eBay Ad

MyCokeRewards commercial mentions something about a partnership about heart disease. Yet MyCokeRewards.com has nothing clearly visible on the site referring to it.

* Ratatouille wins best animated film. Google searching the movie leads to an ad from JuliesBraShop.com for lingerie. Whether I’m searching for the movie or the dish, I’m wondering how that one’s relevant.

There are far more ads on Yahoo. For this search, there are ads from Family.com, eBay, Amazon, LeapFrog, HotMovieSale.com, Blockbuster, and AllPosters.com.

The wife’s wondering how come the Oscars commercials are so much better than the Super Bowl. Maybe the agencies just needed more time this year? The MasterCard commercial with the lazy/curious eye was pretty good. Though the site, priceless.com/search, didn’t have any recognizable connection to the ad.

Golden Compass wins an Oscar. Searching for that brings up no ads in Google. Kudos to Snopes.com for ranking in the natural results for the movie title to clarify urban legends. It should get an extra bump from this. Note that Yahoo has some ads running for the movie title, including a couple book advertisers like Barnesandnoble.com.

In Google, there are tons of irrelevant results for the phrase (without quotes) ‘Jon Stewart Oscar monologue." Roger Ebert’s page at the Chicago Sun-Times ranks 1 – expect a bonus tonight too. Slate.com ranks for the search at Yahoo and Live.com. Score. [Update: You can now find the monologue on YouTube.]

Best Supporting Actor winner: Javier Bardem. Moviefone’s the lone advertiser in Google. Fancast advertises in Yahoo. As for the movie title, No Country for Old Men (without quotes), Blockbuster, Amazon, YellowPages and Netflix advertise on Yahoo, and Yahoo has a great featured info box above the natural search results with ratings and local showtimes. It does mean the top 3 links (official site, IMDB, Wikipedia) get pushed further down, and everything else quickly disappears into no man’s land. Google’s much more simple for the movie title, and RottenTomatoes advertises.

Dove encourages people to vote on the two ad finalists at Oscar.com – a huge win for Oscar and Dove. People can also text in the vote choice by just texting A or B to the short code, making it really easy. At DoveCreamOil.com (hosted on MSN), there’s a link to Oscar.com for the voting. And at Oscar.com, it is very clear where and how to vote. Mercifully, registration was not required.

An aside: Jon Stewart’s outstanding tonight. I’m really enjoying him. He just made some joke about actor Hal Holbrooke doing what I thought he said was the "cabin patch" – a dance of sorts. I couldn’t find any related reference in Google. What was he talking about?

Jerry Seinfeld’s bit about bees in movies is the funniest Bee Movie promo he’s done – well, after the 30 Rock season premiere (check it out at Hulu.com).

As of now, there’s nothing on Wikipedia about Jon Stewart’s performance tonight other than the mention that he’s hosting the awards. I wonder when something material will be updated.

Best Supporting Actress winner: Tilda Swinton, Michael Clayton. No ads in Google for a search on her name. For the movie name, finally, there’s an Oscar movie survey from www.redirexit.com/Oscars. It’s amazing, finally seeing an ad relevant to the awards. Granted, it looks like some spammy company offering a gift card for survey completions. Ugh. Amazon and Blockbuster advertise for Michael Clayton in Yahoo. Blockbuster’s ad references the awards, saying "rent Oscar DVDs." It’s something.

I just ran a search for "Dove," and Dove is well placed in the natural results in Google but doesn’t advertise at all, which is a missed opportunity tonight. Strangely, here’s the text of the ad – why does it think I’m in the UK? I even signed out of Google to make sure there wasn’t a glitch with my personal settings and I got the same ad:

Buy Bath & Shower Here
Shower Gels, Soaps, Bath Products.
Buy Now! Next Day UK Delivery.

Adapted Screenplay: No Country for Old Men. Whew, I can hold off searching a sec since we just did this a minute ago.

I searched for Enchanted, which has provided two of the three best song nominations performed so far, and the two worst songs performed so far. In Google, there’s just one ad for the movie title, an ad for "Enchanted ringtones" at bonusringtones.fm.

There’s a TV spot for the special Oprah’s Big Give. A search in Google shows Oprah.com ranking first, topped by an ad from ABC.com specifically about the special. Bravo.

Best Actress goes to someone in a movie no one’s ever seen, and maybe no one’s ever heard of. Well, that part’s a given, unless it goes to Ellen Page for Juno. My favorite performance: Laura Linney in The Savages, a wonderful, biting picture. And it actually goes to… Marion Cotillard, so not only an actress no one’s heard of with a name no one can pronounce playing a character’s name I can never remember (Google had to correct me on her name). Google has no ads for her – go figure. Interestingly, the first result that comes up right after she wins is a section of Google News results that mentions she won some French award. She’s racking up the continents.

Google saves me in a different way. Searching Google and Amazon confirms I didn’t know the spelling of the name of my pseudo-uncle who’s recovering from surgery (and doing fine, thanks). I was going to send him flowers and nearly entirely botched his name. And he’s only been dating my aunt for, oh, 15 years.

The Counterfeiters is the first Austrian movie to win an Oscar (best foreign film). For the movie title, Moviefone advertisers in Google (in English, not Austrian). I’m leaving the word "the" out of searching, so for "counterfeiters," in Yahoo there’s Amazon advertising as well as… Dealtime. What? This is great – here’s the ad copy:

  • Counterfeiters
    Millions of Products from Thousands of Stores All in One Place.


Someone might want to rethink that ad copy. It makes me all the happier that Beaufort didn’t win. Those ad mixups wouldn’t be anywhere nearly as funny. More fun: in Ask.com, a search on Counterfeiters has recommendations to expand your search with FBI or CIA.

Once wins for Best Song. Thank goodness. Not only was it a great picture with truly moving music, but the trio from Enchanted had to be three of the worst songs ever nominated, and they were all from the same movie in the same year. And this $100,000 movie steals the award. In Google, FoxStore.com advertises, mentioning the "award-winning Irish musical," clearly a catch-all for a movie that already won awards, but fitting and timely given that people searching for it now will make the Oscar connection themselves.

Has this EVER happened? They cut off Markéta Irglová when she won for Once and then after the commercial brought her back on to give a speech. Wow. It’s so great to hear from people who a) are so outside the establishment it’s amazing they’re there in the first place, and b) are genuinely excited to be there. It just makes this whole overblown night feel like it means something, since it really does matter to these people. Fittingly, no one’s advertising on Marketa’s name in Google, though Amazon is in Yahoo – and Amazon will do well to buy its way in as it’s not in the top 10 natural results in Yahoo (it’s 10 on page 1 of Google).

What’s up with Harrison Ford’s earring? Searching for info, apparently some think it’s tied to a mid-life crisis. That just shows you how much a man this guy is, putting off his midlife crisis until he’s in his 60s.

By the way, seeing the Dove ad a few minutes ago, the one that won the voting, was strangely satisfying. It’s just a great media execution. I’d love to dive more into the psychological reactions for it. For instance, compare the reactions of those who didn’t vote, those who voted for the winning ad, and those who voted for the loser. How are all affected? For the record, I voted for the winner, so maybe I’m predisposed to favoring it.

In Google, it’s Moviefone advertising for the name of the Best Actor winner, Daniel Day Lewis. There are no ads for him in Yahoo. Top natural results in Yahoo: images from Yahoo, followed by IMDB, Wikipedia, and Yahoo Movies. In Google, the natural results are for Google News, then IMDB, Wikipedia, and a bio at tiscali.co.uk.

The Coen Brothers predictably win Best Director. Surprisingly, a local ad is the sole ad to appear in Google:

Ethan Coen Off Broadway
Almost an Evening – 3 short plays
Theatres at 45 Bleecker, NYC
New York, NY

And the winner is… No Country for Old Men. No ads in Google. In Yahoo: Blockbuster, Amazon, Netflix, and YellowPages advertise (though again, the best real estate goes to the Yahoo Movies roundup). In Live.com, Amazon and YellowPages.com advertised. In Ask.com, there’s the local ad again for almostanevening.com.

And the ad winner is…

DOVE! Great use of multichannel marketing here.

And the loser is…

Dealtime. That Counterfeiters ad was far more entertaining than four of the five best song performances.

Thanks to all the nominees. You’ve been great. Sorry if your speech time was limited.


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Comments to: Live Blogging Oscar Online Marketing
  • Avatar
    February 24, 2008

    Jack seems to be on coke. Colin Farrell is a hottie. Jon Stewart is disappointing so far, though, no? Btw, what did you make of Francis Ford Coppola’s Youth Without Youth? It hasn’t gotten much play, but it’s a more engaging film than many of those being given awards tonight. Here’s an interesting discussion of the film.

  • Avatar
    February 24, 2008

    Jack seems to be on coke. Colin Farrell is a hottie. Jon Stewart is disappointing so far, though, no? Btw, what did you make of Francis Ford Coppola’s Youth Without Youth? It hasn’t gotten much play, but it’s a more engaging film than many of those being given awards tonight. Here’s an interesting discussion of the film.

  • Avatar
    February 25, 2008

    Wow. This is almost like a minute by minute update of the Oscars. I wonder who else thought of doing something like this and analyzing ads at the same time. I loved Elizabeth the Golden Age and was a bit disappointed when Cate Blanchett didn’t win an Oscar for it. Is Marion Cotillard the French actress who won the Oscar?

  • Like your mix of search, online media and live blogging – added your coverage to the list of live Oscar blogs at Wired PR Works.

  • Avatar
    February 27, 2008

    What Stewart was supposed to say was that Holbrook was doing the “cabbage patch,” not the cabin patch. His only major gaffe of the show, and in an attempt at such a lame reference.
    The cabbage patch was a hard-to-execute and not-much-to-look-at dance move from the 1980s.
    Thanks to YouTube, it’s your lucky day: here’s a tutorial on said dance:


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