I think Adobe are definitely onto something with their ‘Layer Tennis‘ championship.
Originally conceived by Coudal Partners, the idea is simple, but very cool:
Two artists or designers battle out their skills by swapping a Photoshop file back a forth, adding to each other’s work in real time. Each competitor gets fifteen minutes to “volley” the file, and each volley is posted on the site.
The matches last for ten volleys and when it’s complete, everyone with an opinion sounds off in the Forums and then they declare a winner.
A third participant, a writer, provides play-by-play commentary on the action, as it happens.
Seems as though they have some high calibre creatives going head to head. This week’s battle was Skinnycorp’s Jeffrey Kalmikoff up against interactive designer Brendan Dawes – and special comments by daringfireball’s John Gruber.
What a great campaign – Artists inspired by other artists, in a format that you can easily digest. And spread to other artists.
It reminds me of a simple thought that Andy Sernovitz spoke about recently – If you want your marketing to get spread by word-of-mouth, it can’t be about You. It’s about them. It’s not your company, your product, or your message. It’s about theirs.
That’s why this campaign has already proven to be a word-of-mouth winner.
What I also love about this type of marketing is that it doesn’t smell like a marketing campaign. It’s fun, not corporate. It’s like something you’d expect from Crumpler. It’s great. And it doesn’t leave you feeling as though you’ve been marketed to.