Vanity Fair Napkins created an animated commercial on musician John Mayer’s Instagram page. The last-minute team up was made possible by an agile marketing team who jumped on Mayer’s recent jokes regarding Vanity Fair—both the publication and the napkins.
Monday morning, Grammy award-winning musician John Mayer shared an animated commercial on his Instagram page. In the ad, a man asks a woman for her number. When she tries to write it on a Vanity Fair napkin, he changes his mind. The spot ends with the Vanity Fair logo and the slogan, “We can only make the napkins.”
The official Vanity Fair napkins Instagram also shared the video, calling Mayer a “NapkinInfluencer.”
Vanity Fair parent company Georgia Pacific created the spot after an unexpected plug on Oscar night.
Last weekend, Mayer hosted a fake Vanity Fair after-party at his home, down to the blue carpet backdrop and set pieces. Celebrities including comedians Bob Saget and Jeffrey Ross celebrated with Mayer, posting photos on social media that to the untrained eye, appeared to be have been taken at the real Oscar party.
Mayer broadcast the party on his weekly IGTV show Current Mood. Party guests accentuated the joke by posing with Vanity Fair paper products and pretending the brand was a sponsor. Mayer was then struck with an idea for a Vanity Fair napkins commercial and shared it with the viewers. Little did he know that Georgia Pacific’s communications manager Melissa Kinard was watching.
Kinard signed into her business account and began interacting with Mayer’s audience as the Vanity Fair brand in real-time. The next day, she and her team were developing the commercial. Kinard was traveling at the time of this writing, but Georgia Pacific was happy to share the process.
“We were able to turn it around really quickly last week,” Georgia Pacific senior director of communications Anna Umphress told AList. “We animated his commercial word for word. [Mayer] thought it was a fun thing and shared it on his show Sunday night.”
Mayer’s post has received over 100,000 likes and 1,100 comments in the first 12 hours.
Vanity Fair redesigned its packaging in 2017 and has adopted a marketing narrative of everyday use. Umphress said the plug by Mayers offered a fun way to engage a younger audience.
“I’m really proud of the team here for first, recognizing the opportunity and then working really hard to make that real-time interaction happen so that it was still relevant for John and his followers,” said Umphress.
“We’re always looking for these opportunities, but they have to be real and authentic to the brand,” Umphress explained. “In this case, it really was an opportunity to personalize our message to consumers and this really took it to the next level.”