Commercial Producer Uses Filmmaking and Branding Skills to Help Companies Create a Unique Presence on the Web
ATLANTA-While many companies today are cutting back or laying off, Atlanta-based Pogo Pictures is branching out. The company, which produces television commercials, has formed a new division, Pogo Interactive, and is using the storytelling and brand-building skills it has developed in crafting ads for Fortune 500 companies to create true interactive advertising experiences for the web. What Pogo has in mind are not simple viral ads or stripped down versions of television spots, rather highly entertaining, brand-centric tales that give viewers an opportunity to control the plot.
To support its new venture, Pogo Pictures has added web design and programming services and purchased an 11,000 square foot building in midtown Atlanta. It also plans to hire more than a dozen additional staff in the coming year.
Pogo Pictures has been planning the launch of Pogo-i for many months, well before the current economic downturn, as a way to appeal to advertisers that are increasingly shunning TV in favor of opportunities on the web. “It’s where advertising is going,” says Pogo Pictures founder Steve Colby. “Clients are balancing their ad dollars and they want to have a strong presence on the web.”
Colby believes that one of the best ways advertisers can take advantage of the web’s unique features is through interactive advertising-websites that draw people in because they are entertaining and encourage them to spend time “interacting” with a brand. “It is a way to drive people to a client’s message and create a life and personality around a brand that cannot easily be done in 30 seconds,” Colby explains. “You can also integrate things like tracking, measurability, coupons and specials-that again you can’t do on TV-so it’s a good deal for advertisers.”
To show how its vision for interactive advertising works, Pogo-i has produced a pair of spec interactive microsites – one for Atlanta’s SweetWater Brewing Company, and the other for FedexKinko’s. “Both sites offer a true interactive experience, where visitors are able to participate rather than just view,” Colby says. “It’s using the internet for its true capabilities rather than as a cheap form of television.” (The two microsites are accessible via
Pogo-i offers a turnkey service for clients seeking a one-stop solution. As with its two microsites, the company can develop concepts, write the script, produce the site and develop all of the interactive features. Alternatively, it can work with a client’s advertising agency and execute concepts they develop for interactive experiences in much the way Pogo Pictures works with agencies in producing ads for TV.
Pogo-i can function as a good complement to Pogo Pictures for agencies and clients seeking to create cross-platform advertising. “In today’s world, there are all sorts of possibilities such as spin offs for mobile and gaming platforms. This new media can have a life beyond the web,” notes Pogo Pictures executive producer Lesley Harris.
Colby notes that Pogo-i also offers clients, who may be dipping into interactive advertising for the first time, the peace of mind of working with a company with an established track record. Pogo’s experience in producing high-end television spots and working strategically with ad agencies gives it an advantage over web developers that lack that background.
“Companies have worked hard to develop their image and it’s important that it remain consistent in its web advertising,” Colby observed. “We are not a start-up. We’ve worked with companies and agencies from all over the country on national branding spots and we know how to have fun while also staying on message.”
Pogo Interactive is located at 621 North Avenue NE, Suite C-150, Atlanta, Georgia 30308. For more information, call (404) 549-4490 or visit