Fortify - Great Advertising
I rarely see eye-catching or amusing advertising from software vendors. Don't you miss the the dot-com boom ads where vendors fired rodents from cannons? Naked men telecommuted? Firms spent all their VC money on Super-Bowl ads? Yeah, those were heady days.
We've been enduring safe, boring software ads for most of this decade. Most software ads feature the vendor's logo prominently across the page with some boring copy in small print at the bottom of the ad. The picture is usually some generic stock photo with a dull platitude about quality, value, total cost of ownership or some other yawner. Most software ads could substitute one vendor's name for another and no one would notice.
I've really enjoyed the pieces lately by Fortify (www.fortifysoftware.com). They've created the mythical country of Hackistan where their people engage in all sorts of heinous IT security havoc (see attached ad). Download hackistan.jpg
Fortify's even added a special page of 'News' re: Hackistan on their web site (http://extra.fortifysoftware.com/news/). I like this campaign as it tries to put a (humorous) face on the cyber-terrorism front. It personalizes a generic, faceless enemy and, most importantly, it engages the reader. Many advertising pros will remind folks that humorous ads might win awards but often aren't effective in increasing sales. While I don't know whether this campaign is driving higher sales results for Fortify, it did make me want to know more about them. Time will tell if this campaign's a hit but for now I thank Fortify for making trade publications a little more enjoyable these days.