A 30 second advert for the Chevrolet Colorado tricked 100 million viewers into thinking their cable or TV sets had failed just minutes before the start of the Super Bowl XLIX last weekend, illustrating the benefits of 4G LTE.
The Chevrolet advert aired on NBC shortly before the kick-off of the Super Bowl on Sunday 1st February 2015. The ad initially appeared to be a live feed to the action, which then turned to static and finally a black screen. Millions of distraught fans were relieved to discover after a few seconds that the interruption was intentional, when the message “What would you do if your TV went out?” appeared on the screen. Chevrolet then went on to explain that having a Colorado with 4G LTE Wi-Fi at such a moment would allow viewers to stream the game live, avoiding the disruption of a TV set breaking down. The ad read “The all-new Chevy Colorado offers built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi. You could stream the game in it. Just sayin’. You know you want a truck.”
Described as the Chevy Super Bowl ‘Blackout’, the ad caused its fair share of controversy, but was generally praised as an exceptional way to grab consumers’ attention at a time of high anticipation, and made up for the tepid advertising that Chevy has been accused of in recent years. Chevrolet executives spent a long time deciding how long they could safely let viewers watch a black screen for before they put them out of their misery and decided that seven seconds was ideal.
According to Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president, Chevrolet Marketing, “When you have a ground-breaking product like the Chevy Colorado, you must deliver ground-breaking advertising like we are today. Seven seconds was about that magic number where it was enough time to draw people in, but then to give them a big fat smile right after letting them know it was a commercial from Chevrolet. If we played it out too long, you had the risk of people changing the channel, or shutting off the TV or, honestly, getting mad. I think we played it perfectly. It was a balancing act.”
The original idea for the ad was less extreme, with actors watching the Super Bowl on TV until it went out, and then heading out to the garage to stream it in the garage using their Colorado’s 4G LTE connection, but then the Chevrolet team decided the ad would have more impact if it happened for real.
4G LTE in the Chevrolet Colorado
Chevrolet says customers can turn their small truck into the ultimate hot spot with a 4G LTE high-speed Wi-Fi connection powered by OnStar. The Colorado can provide a powerful connection for up to seven devices, so passengers can connect laptops, tablets, games consoles, and smartphones, to stream music and video, surf the web, play games, or check e-mail.
According to the Chevroet website “Internet in your car? It’s here. Chevrolet is leading the way with the most vehicles in its line up offering the available built-in OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, allowing passengers the ability to seamlessly connect their smart devices and vehicles to the internet.”