FOX have begun airing several ‘radio spots’ in their bid to bring Fringe to the attention of the masses. Listen to the three ads via the player:
TV Week have been covering the story and report the following:
As befits a show from Mr. Abrams (“Lost”), many of the promotions will carry an air of intrigue, with viewers and listeners having to do some searching in order to figure out just what it is they’ve seen or heard. The tagline for many of the promotions will be, “Imagine the impossibilities.”
Radio ads begin running this week in 10 major markets. But instead of the usual “Watch ‘Fringe’ this fall on Fox” spots, the net is running ads that don’t mention the show at all.
One spot is for a fictional car dealership—Abrams Auto, natch—that’s suddenly interrupted by static and a creepy voice that urges listeners to “find the pattern.”
Another ad will have listeners thinking they’ve tuned into a police scanner, with a cop mentioning an incident at “Abrams and 4th.” The cop suggests the incident might be linked to “the pattern.”
A third spot is a fictional news brief that makes mention of, yup, a “pattern.”
While some of the spots do feature a quick mention of Fox, nothing else indicates they’re promoting a TV show. Ms. Bernard said the network is betting listeners will start investigating—and when they do so, Fox will be ready.
The network has struck agreements with major search engines so that when consumers type in words such as “pattern,” Fox’s Web site for “Fringe” will come up in the results.
The Hollywood Reporter has more:
The Fox network is hoping listeners will piece together these mysterious fragments and realize there is indeed a pattern — one that leads straight to the network’s tentpole fall series “Fringe.”
The ads are part of Fox’s innovative new ad campaign for the J.J. Abrams action drama that the network hopes to use to jump-start its fall season. Although the network declined to release specific dollar figures, the campaign represents Fox’s largest scripted series marketing effort in years.
The campaign will feature cryptic messages that encourage fans to search on the Internet for more information. Fans of Abrams’ hit ABC drama “Lost” and last year’s theatrical release “Cloverfield” are familiar with the tactic, so much so that Abrams’ name is incorporated into the radio ads as a clue.
“Our radio goal was definitely to not say ‘Fringe,’ ” said Laurel Bernard, senior vp marketing at Fox. “We didn’t want them to sound in any way like a traditional radio spot. We wanted them to be disruptive and a little mysterious sounding.”
The campaign also includes online ads placed on Web sites outside of the usual entertainment hubs to catch viewers attention in unique locations. Users on such sites as Automobile.com and recipe site FamilyOven.com will see mysterious ads encouraging them to “Imagine the Impossibilities.”
“They will be very quick sort of messages, leading people to nondescript Web sites that will ultimately lead them back to ‘Fringe,’ ” Bernard said.
With the campaign, Fox is getting an early start on its fall marketing. The network’s off-air marketing efforts usually don’t being until six weeks before a series premiere.
The “Scanner” radio spot catches my attention the most, the reference of “Abrams and 4th” seems like a good Internet hunting/googling starting point. We should perhaps also pay particular attention any to numbers, seeing as such devices were/are a big part of LOST’s viral/mythos.
Let us know if you find anything thing out there in Interweb-land!