Listen to Mike discuss the relationship between creative storytelling, marketing and clients on the StoryFoward podcast.
Jeremiah shares the Campfire perspective on how stunts in marketing can be cost-effective conversation generators.
Communication Arts named the Campfire-designed Snapple homepage as their
Webpick of the day for 2/15.
This is an excerpt of the full article featured in Shots magazine.
Remember 1999? As millennium bug fears ran riot and the
world prepared for the mother of all hangovers to usher
in the new century, there was an indy movie phenomenon
terrifying audiences and, at that point, becoming
America's most profitable movie ever The Blair Witch
Project. A large part of the film's success was
fuelled by the online activity that built on the myth
and developed the fanbase before the final version was
even cut – rewriting the rules on movie marketing.
More than a decade later, lessons learnt on Blair Witch
are still being used by two of its makers – Mike Monello
and Gregg Hale – at NYC-based marketing agency Campfire.
"One of the reasons The Blair Witch Project worked was
due to the fact we weren't a large corporation pumping
out a horror movie because there was a market for
horror," recalls Monello, Campfire partner and chief
creative officer. "We were fans and part of the culture
and community, and we understood what was driving it. We
knew there was an undercurrent of people tired of the
ironic, jokey horror films. They wanted something that
took itself seriously and The Blair Witch Project was a
reaction to that. So
I think for Campfire, one of the key philosophies is
making something that we believe will work in the
absence of media – that there's a reason people
want to experience this.
Tales around the campfire
With participatory storytelling at the heart of
Campfire's culture, today the small, multidisciplinary
team weaves its cross-media campaigns through multiple
channels, blurring the lines between marketing,
entertainment and advertising and shaking up old
formulas. Monello and his collaborators' route into the
industry came after signing with Chelsea Pictures, and
as the trickle of web projects coming through the door
built into a steady stream, the collective saw the
potential was there for those with the right ideas.
"We were being brought in earlier in the process," continues Monello,
"and were learning advertising while bringing in what we had learnt from
social storytelling on the web through The Blair Witch Project. We saw
that the ambitions in the clients and creatives were greater than the
structure would afford, and that, for me, meant there was an
opportunity. So Campfire started out of frustration at seeing great
ideas sometimes not even make it to clients and thinking that there was
a better way."
READ THE FULL ARTICLE