Your mom hates it when you block her from Facebook. She hates it when you ask her for cash. Most of all, your mom hates it when you play the video game Dead Space 2, and that is why you should play it.


This is the reasoning behind the latest Dead Space 2 ad campaign called, Your Mom Hates This. The entertainment software company Electronic Arts Inc., has published a series of videos showing real moms’ reactions to the violent game. The campaign spilled over onto Twitter with the Promoted Trend hashtag #yourmomhatesthis .  Promoted Trends are phrases that you pay to appear at the top of Twitter trending topics. Promoted Trends are part of Twitter's new advertisng platform that is still in beta and is slowly rolling out to advertisers.

EA also added a contest to this video and Twitter campaign. If you tweet your mom’s reactions to clips from Dead Space 2 using the hashtag #mymomhatesdeadspace2 , you can win a Dead Space 2 skinned Playstation 3.

So why are we writing about this campaign? The marketing concept behind this campaign is smart, simple, and powerful.

Make Your Audience Feel Cool

“A mom’s disapproval has always been an accurate barometer of what is cool,” explains EA’s behind-the-scenes video. “So Dead Space 2 was put to the test.” By introducing a barometer of what is cool and what not -- your mom hates cool things -- the game creates a space for cool people to gather. The takeaway for marketers is that your company should create similar spaces that invite people and make them feel part of a cool community.  

Combine Video with Social Media

When you are building a marketing campaign, think about the opportunities presented by multiple online channels. In this case, EA used YouTube to spread its videos and used social media to generate a conversation and create a contest. In a world where video viewing and social media usage is rapidly growing, leveraging these two channels in a united marketing effort can very likely lead to campaign success.

Use Controversy to Generate Buzz

Clearly, this campaign has caused a big controversy online, with many commentators questioning the ad’s ethics. MSNBC asks Dead Space 2 to leave moms alone. Bloggers recognize the fact that this campaign is fueling the debate about the harm of mature games. All of these comments, however, spark genuine conversation and increase the visibility of Dead Space 2. As we know very well, a little controversy can generate a great deal of important dialogue and can help your brand enjoy much wider recognition.

What are your thoughts about the campaign? Does it inspire you to try something different?

Originally published Jan 20, 2011 3:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017


Video Marketing