Zune TV Campaign Falls Short Of Classic iPod Ads

Zune TV ads are circulating around the blogosphere, such as these YouTube clips on the Zune Insider Blog .

Of course the question is, how do they compare to Apple’s famous campaign of the dancing silhouettes?

The ads, which try to emphasize the social functionality of zune, show the product in use at a dog park with breakdancers. Or at a hip hop show… So, it’s a very different take than Apple’s — it’s not iconic, like the silhouettes, but emotional and lifestyle driven. The visual style isn’t high production level, it’s amateurish, handy-cam style — almost YouTube-ish, like those Vonage ads, which showed real people doing real stupid things.

So, here zune (or is it “Zune” with a capital Z?) is trying to strike an emotional tone and create a lifestyle product around the products core, social-driven functionality.

But these ads fail and fall short of iPod’s classic campign because:
1) The users featured in the zune ads aren’t representative — they’re fantasies: What couple will really take their dogs to a park with their zunes to exchange music? What park exists where world-class breakdancing and dog-walkers mingle together?

I’m all for fantasy-showcasing campaigns, but if these ads really wanted to be realistic they’d show a 22 yr old, dorky male on a subway, trying to flirt his way into a girls heart by sharing a love song with here — not some niche urban culture than only exists in downtown SoHo.

2) The amount of actual footage of these ads that showcases people using the product, or even shows the product at all, is so minimal. This will leave people wondering — what is this ad actually for? What is the product?

Compare that to the apple ads, which spend every single second pumping up the core of what the iPod is about — technology so simple and hip it will make you want to dance your ass off.

Zune, I’m sorry, but you’ve got to come up with something better if you want to wrestle with the big-boys.