A series where a copywriter (Kellie) is not jealous about, but inspired by how other people’s words sound together.
Spectrum Mobile has a current deal offering unlimited data plans for $29.99 with the next line free. If you knew exactly how that sentence was going to end, you likely have seen the brand’s recent spot, which repeats variations of that promotion four times in 30 seconds.
Now, it’s not a particularly flashy line. In fact, it’s just the deal with little added flare. But it ends up being memorable because of the clever repetition and an excellent performance by John Hoogenakker. Hoogenakker is a stage, screen and commercial actor. You may recognize him from Chicago Fire, Dopesick or as the Bud Light King in the brand’s Dilly Dilly campaign.
The premise of the spot is simple, but effective. Hoogenakker appears as a brand spokesperson introducing the current promotion then quickly pops into other scenarios. He’s a college professor, sports announcer, DJ, news anchor and truck driver. In each scene, he mentions the deal as if he were those people. As a college professor, it is delivered alongside a PowerPoint presentation. As a sports announcer, he emphasizes the “freeeeee” like Rick Jeanneret would after a goal. As a trucker on the CB radio, it ends with “over and out.” These little nuances only help you listen closer. How will the delivery change when he says it as a radio DJ or a news anchor? You’re curious, not annoyed.
Meanwhile, we’ve heard “unlimited data plans for $29.99 with the next line free” four times. Some small details are added each time. It’s a 5G network. It’s reliable. The next line is free for 12 months. But otherwise, that’s it. The single most important piece of information that Spectrum Mobile wants us to remember somehow makes up the entirety of the spot while never feeling that way. A lot of that is thanks to Hoogenakker’s performance. It’s charismatic, but not obnoxious. Accurate but not stereotypical of those professions. We also never stay with one scenario for too long either. It’s a fast moving spot that keeps our attention.
And the actual script is just the information of the deal. So it’s not that I’m envious of the specific word choices as much as I am about the way the message was maximized through premise and performance. If the goal was to convey the promotion clearly multiple times, Spectrum Mobile achieved that by making an earworm out of the most basic of lines. But they had a lot of fun along the way, which made all the difference.