Positive vs. Negative Marketing . . . and Gamefly’s “Bad Game” TV Spot

08 Feb 2010


So, Gamefly.com has been running this ad lately. Check it out:

People buy bad video games. They freak out, realizing that they’ve purchased bad video games. They continue to freak out, ostensibly because they’re stuck with their bad video games (and out the 50 to 60 bucks they paid for them).

The ad ends with a line that says something like, “Never buy bad games again.”

So, the message is . . . we should rent bad games? The ability to rent dozens of bad games per month, delivered straight to your mailbox is somehow better than buying one bad game? There’s no need to freak out – you don’t have to keep this bad game? You can send it back, and in a few days, you’ll get another bad game (but at least you’re not stuck with it)?

I dunno. I know what they’re getting at. I’ve bought bad games, and it does, well, suck.

But why not focus on the positive? The solutions they provide? I’d like to know how I’ll benefit from Gamefly if I choose to use their service. And there are a ton of potential benefits to a service like this (if you’re not familiar with Gamefly, it works just like Netflix). There’s price (around $16 to $25 a month is about half the cost of a new game); variety (you have tons of options to choose from); convenience (you don’t even have to leave the house – games come right to you). And of course, there’s no commitment: once you get sick of a game, or beat it, or – yes, it happens – you don’t like it, you can send it back.

I feel like this ad missed the mark.


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