McCoy’s ad uses subtitles to maximise online impact

04.05.2017 Advertising : Marketing : Digital
McCoy's Chips by WCRS, UK

UK – The advert plays on the fact that only 15% of people watch adverts on social media with the sound on.

The crisp brand’s latest campaign, which was produced by WCRS, was created to promote the McCoy’s new range of chip shop-inspired flavours. Although the film’s tv version plays as a conventional advert, the one that consumers see on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook also features a visually diverse range of subtitles.

Rather than the restrained white typography commonly used for subtitling, the advert shows a variety of large, colourful and animated glyphs that reference different aspects of internet culture. This tactic has been designed to draw in casual viewers to the advert’s narrative, even when they are likely to have the audio muted.

‘When it comes to Facebook, subtitles have become the default because nobody is listening,’ Billy Faithfull, executive creative director of WCRS, told Little Black Book. ‘But they’re standard, functional, safe. We had a different idea. We knew it was an opportunity to unleash the full flavour of McCoy’s and turn the problem on its head.’

The Big Picture

  • Rather than being hampered by the lack of sound, WCRS’ treatment subverts the expectations of subtitling to give its campaign additional impact
  • As we explored in our Mimicry Marketing microtrend, advertisers are trying to copy and learn from consumers’ online behaviour in order to enhance the effectiveness of their campaigns
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