Napster scored a touchdown with its Super Bowl ad, which showed the Napster kitty holding up a sign that said, "Do the math."

Mike Elgan, Contributor

February 7, 2005

1 Min Read

Napster scored a touchdown with its Super Bowl ad, which showed the Napster kitty holding up a sign. The camera zoomed in on the sign, and focused on it for 17 seconds. It said, "Do the math" and pointed out that filling up an iPod using Apple's iTunes music service would cost you $10,000 but getting the same number of songs through Napster costs just $15 per month.

Here's the ad.

That's a pretty effective message against Apple. On the one hand, Apple is selling music players that emphasize storage capacity -- a midrange model famously holds 10,000 songs. On the other hand, the company's music service emphasizes paying for your songs -- at about $1 per song -- rather than, say, stealing them.

To take advantage of both high capacity and legal downloads through iTunes does cost $10,000.

What the commercial didn't say was that the Napster songs won't play once you don't pay. You're renting songs, not buying them. It also didn't say that the Napster songs won't play on your iPod or some other players (the company has a list of compatible players on its web site).

Still, it was a memorable ad -- one that's likely to get people to consider Napster as a lower cost alternative to iTunes and the iPod.

Read more about:

20052005

About the Author(s)

Never Miss a Beat: Get a snapshot of the issues affecting the IT industry straight to your inbox.

You May Also Like


More Insights