Matt Groening and the Fox Broadcasting Company are now worth a dump truck full of money more than they were yesterday. To prove that pre-roll ads aren’t just for terrible-looking movies and video games, YouTube used clips from the Simpsons episode “Mr. Plow” (that episode name again, “Mr. Plow”) to show how effective video commercials are for small businesses.
In it, Homer places Mr. Plow flyers around town and films his ad, but no one sees it because the only people awake at 3:17 a.m. are alcoholics, the unemployable, and angry loners. But Lisa uploads the clip to YouTube, which everyone in Springfield is forced to watch for five seconds while they’re waiting for a video where a (hungry, hungry) hippo befriends a guinea pig.
According to re/code, the ad will run online only, and “is meant to grease the wheels for small and medium-size business advertisers, who make up a majority of spenders on the video site.” The Simpsons is one of the longest running and most popular shows in TV history, yet it rarely participates in advertising campaigns. There’s, of course, Butterfingers, but Bart hasn’t shilled for them since the last time he said “don’t have a cow, man.” Beyond that, there’s 1-800-Collect (lol), Burger King, Domino’s, and not much else. Meanwhile, Minions was on every box of condoms in the country this summer.
I’m not sure if this YouTube thing is going to take off. Everyone knows the best way to advertise your product is through billboards. That reminds me: I need to buy some English muffins.