As I began my pursuit for another sub-10 minute completion of the New York Times crossword puzzle (in pen) today, I couldn’t help but wonder: wow, does General Electric have 3 Focused Visions for the Future?
Then I went to read about the Georgia runoff election today and thought “What role does GE Aerospace have in the future of flight innovation?”
And when listening to The Daily during my workout, Michael Babaro sure seemed excited about a world with no healthcare limitations…thanks to GE.
Turns out, if you were anywhere near The New York Times today, you were inundated with GE advertising. No spoilers but guessing today’s WORDLE is LUVGE.
The reason for this GE inundation is historical. As part of the brand splitting into three publicly-traded companies – GE HealthCare, GE Aerospace and GE Vernova – it bought every single ad space in the print and online version of The New York Times. The price tag for one day of this was seven figures, roughly my monthly electric bill.
That’s a lot of dimp for just slapping some ads next to a story on the new trailer for Netflix’s Prince Harry and Meghan Markle documentary. So GE got creative, working with the Times’ creative advertising arm and GE’s media agency of record, Giant Spoon, to make a bunch of interactive ads and then get even more creative in print (which is hard to do). From Axios:
- For example, one page guides readers through how to create a foldable paper airplane via a visual guide adapted from a book written by Ken Blackburn, a four-time Guinness World Record holder for time keeping a paper airplane in flight.
- Another includes a circular crossword puzzle from award-winning puzzle maker Brendan Emmett Quigley.
You don’t need to spend a million dollars for one day of marketing (but if you’re interested, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and mark it urgent). But GE knew that even making this a milestone moment wasn’t enough and it had to get creative with how it was presenting its newly formed companies. Bringing interactive ads on the digital and print front catches your attention beyond the standard “wait for the banner ad to collapse” approach most brands take.
Whether the ROI can come anywhere close to spending more than a million dollars in one day is another question, but that never stopped my wife from spending that much on Amazon in a single session. Regardless, much like me when I see these Amazon boxes arrive on my doorstep, it’ll be interesting to see how readers react to this new way of in-your-face marketing on every page.