The Siri Movie with The Rock was the top performing YouTube video ad in July 2017 according to Google’s tracking website. A key purpose of advertising is exposure. Apple clearly met that standard and is approaching 14 million views. The ad is 3 minutes and 45 seconds so would not fit in a standard television ad format. However, it feels right at home on YouTube.
A Slick Update with Star Power Can Still Draw Views
Ava Mutchler wrote earlier this week that the ad essentially was a slick update to a 2011 ad for the iPhone 4s when Siri first launched. Many of the features used by Dwayne Johnson in the video are nearly identical to what was highlighted in the original ad promoting Siri.
Voicebot has argued that better sounding smart speakers and star-studded branding won’t overcome Siri’s narrow feature set and lack of third party app support. This is likely true over the long term. However, in the short term, a nice looking high end speaker and The Rock can help Siri appear as an equal to Alexa and Google Assistant. Siri isn’t there yet, but you would never know it from the production value of the ad. Promotion works…when done well.