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How Roomba killed Dubstep

It’s so sad to see that like clock work the latest YouTube sensation makes its way into multiple TV commercials in no time flat these days.  The latest case study comes to us via Dubstepping and its unofficial front man Marquese Scott. Six months ago Marquese posted the viral sensation ‘PUMPED UP KICKS|DUBSTEP‘ which was the general publics first major exposure to Dubstepping and it racked up over 45 million views and counting. From this video you started to see the predictable death and corruption through commercials from Peugeot and Coca-Cola before finally being shamed and killed by Roomba. I have respect for the first commercial in the series of Dubstep exploitations which came from Peugeot which respected the original material keeping the video around 4 minutes and kept their branding to a minimum opting instead for more product placement (see video 2 below). The next ad came from Coca-Cola who shortened the length to 30 seconds, added a group of other dancers who are ethnically diverse and add a more high-end polish to the look of the video (see video 3 below).The death rattle for Dubstep came from the latest commercial from Roomba which is painfully horrible on pretty much every level (see video 4 below). The production value that Coca-cola brought to the table was a young group of dancer in the Coke ad have been replaced by a more age and career diverse group of dancers who compared to Marquese look like the rejects from the auditions of FOX’s ‘So You Think You Can Dance’. This Roomba spot is pure exploitation of a trend and extinguishes any of the cache Dubstep has left.  Viewed as a series you can clearly see the 6 month life cycle of Dubstep from its birth, rise, commercialization and fall like so many before it. It would be so refreshing to see client’s who demand that these trends are started by the incredibly creative people in ad agencies instead of just subjugating them to become nothing more than a Xerox machine for the exploitation other people’s creativity.

1 – How it all started with PUMPED UP KICKS|DUBSTEP

2 – Peugeot stayed true to the original material keeping to somewhat subtle branding

3 – Coke shorten the format to 30 seconds and gave it a more polished look

4 – The death rattle of Dubstep from this horrible Roomba commercial

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Creative Director, Designer, Brand Builder, Speaker, Podcaster, Crazy One. As a designer, I have 20+ years experience creating the strategy, concepts, and designs for award-winning integrated global advertising campaigns, building multiple global Fortune 500 brands and creating innovative digital experiences. As a leader, I have 15+ years transforming agency and client-side teams using a mix of creativity, business strategy, process and political skill to create innovative, world-class work and cultures that change industries and companies. My clients have included American Airlines, W Hotels, Disney, Citi, ExxonMobil, Acura, Old Navy, Nationwide Insurance, Verizon, Subaru and many others. My work has received over 150 international awards, my app designs have been named as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Apps, Apple has featured my work in 9 keynotes, 4 TV commercials and more.

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