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Simulated Flash for iPhone Used In Online Ad Campaign

Not content with waiting for Apple and Adobe to align expectations with porting Flash over to the iPhone, a company called GreyStripe has developed a simulated Flash experience currently being used in advertising campaigns for clients such as Unilver’s Axe Brand bodyspray.

iphone fake flashThe simulated flash experience, which Greystripe is dubbing Rich Media Flash Ads for the iPhone, is split into two products. The first called GS.Impact claims that it “offers all of the creative power of Flash on an iPhone, allowing brands to extend any online advertising campaign directly into mobile.” The second, called GS.Tailgate claims it gives potential advertisers “the ability to create miniature advertiser branded games in flash as pre-post or interstitial into existing iPhone games.”

Unilver’s Axe bodyspray (a male grooming product), was the first product to push a full-scale three month long ad campaign using GreyStripe’s flash simulation. The company wanted to directly target and “speak to” its 18 to 24 year old audience of men, but they didn’t want to use standard conventional channels. As RCRWireless notes, Axe wanted to take one of its proven digital web assets and turn it into a mobile game capable of running on the iPhone. Axe decided to take “Dirty Night Determinator”, a Flash-based game and integrate it with GreyStripe’s products in the hopes of reaching those 18 to 24 year old iPhone users.

“Consistency in messaging is always a priority for any brand, and Axe is no different,” explained Shane Kent, brand manager for Axe Personal Wash, “Axe … likes to be the first to flirt with new technology.” Continuing on he explained that Axe wants to try and stay innovative while giving consumers “something unexpected, as opposed to static ad that gets lost in the clutter.” In December, Axe became the first advertiser to deploy a full-scale advertising campaign using GreyStripe’s Rich Media Flash Ads for the iPhone, and the results are interesting.

Effect on Users

After consumers interacted with the Flash based game, consumer intent to purchase a shower product called the Axe Detailer, skyrocketed 15%. According to a ComScore survey, the percentage rate of interested consumers shot up to 74% from 59% prior to the campaign.

Overall, the interactivity of the entire campaign may be enough to compel future advertisers, especially those stuck in a rut due to the current economy. In ComScore’s numbers, they also found that 56% of the people who actually interacted with the ad campaign were more likely to buy the product, as apposed to 35% who saw it, but did not interact with it. Further, from those that took the time to interact with the ad, 64% said they felt “more positive” about the brand after playing the game.

The Actual Campaign

Impressively, the ad campaign served a total of 3 million impressions according to GreyStripe. In the “Dirty Night Determinator” the game showcases a product akin to a loofah for men. When iPhone users click through the ad-based game, they can determine how “dirty their nights were” by using a drop down menu. Based on the information a particular user will provide, the game will then determine which body parts need the most scrubbing while providing tips on how to clean.

Of the 4,000 people that took part in the effectiveness survey, 943 fell into the control group which means they did not see the ad. 2,447 claimed they did see the ad, and 126 people actually interacted with the game.

There has been a lot of recent discussion surrounding Apple’s iPhone and the possibility of Adobe porting Flash over to the device. Based on a short quote from Apple CEO Steve Jobs, Adobe has been trying to work all angles in convincing Apple to allow Flash, or a version of Flash to run natively on the iPhone. Executives from Adobe have made public comments in the past explaining that Apple and Adobe are “working together” on porting Flash over to the iPhone. Unfortunately, this is highly unlikely given Apple’s stance on, well, nearly everything.

Besides the iPhone being underpowered (at the moment), Flash would open the doors for new malware, invasive advertising, user interface manipulation, and the possibility that developers could potentially bypass Apple’s App Store arrangement. None of this seems like anything that Apple would be interested in.

You can check out GreyStripe’s explanation and flash demo here.

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