Never critique a movie you haven’t seen: How T-Mobile at T5 is a triumph of execution over strategy

so you've seen the above already … T-Mobile's latest real-people-crowd-mob-activation-engagement thing, which took place at Heathrow's Terminal 5 not too long ago.  big thanks to Laura for sending it in my direction.

I've had two totally separate conversations about this activity.  the first was on Saturday, where in a discussion about T-Mobile's latest effort my general line of observation was along the lines of 'yeah but they've pretty much done that now … where can they possibly go? … they're in danger of becoming a one-trick pony – I fear I may have even gone as far as to use the phrase 'jumped the shark'.

my thinking was that it all sounded rather a bit much.  a tactical idea that started – brilliantly – at Liverpool Street a couple of years ago is now being stretched just a little too thin.  been there, seen T-Mobile doing that.  singing to people as they arrive at Heathrow.  really T-Mobile?  really?!

the second conversation I had about the effort was this afternoon.  a full six hours after I actually took three minutes out of my life to watch the above video of the effort.  it would seem that Mark Kermode – who says never critique a movie you haven't seen – is totally right…

strategically this is a tactical activation re-imagined in a new time and place.  strategically this is an inside-out TV ad and not a lot more.  strategically this is a PR platform that engages relatively few people in the actual experience.  strategically we should all be really very over this already.

only I'm not over it.  I happen to adore this tactical replay of a PR-led inside out TV ad.

I adore it because of the dedication and effort to make it executionally so polished.  because of the realness and authenticity of people's reactions.  and because it's a piece of communication that reflects a genuinely positive aspect of the human condition.

strategically this shouldn't work.  but in execution, it delivers in spades.  a strategic one-trick pony it may be, but as ponies that do a trick go, you've got to admit its a pretty good one…

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