Posted by Abe Sauer on October 18, 2011 12:29 PM
Ikea is teaming up with YouTube to bring us one step closer to never having to participate in reality. By accessing a customer's Facebook account, Ikea UK's YouTube App uses social media information to build "everything you need to be happy in bed."
After accessing your Facebook information, Ikea's YouTube app construct a 3D bedroom designed and furnished based on the lifestyle and interests information obtained from the Facebook profile. The Ikea items in the bedroom are interactive, with a click leading to purchase information on the Ikea UK website.
The app, accessible to anyone with a Facebook account, offers a couple of neat tricks.
The app uses wall posts for the actual walls (before painting them over) and populates picture frames in the bedroom with photos from the user's Facebook photo albums.
In the test run I did (top), Ikea's app assembled a bedroom where I "will go happy to bed." Maybe it is the fault of a less than robust Facebook profile, but it was difficult to figure out why some of the items placed in my bedroom were chosen over others. A rattan lamp? Really?
Also, in the first step of the process, I added a child to the mix. The app used this information to place a crib in the room, a nice touch.
As technology advances, it's easy to encounter a new application and be disappointed that it is not flawless artificial intelligence. But all in all, Ikea's app is a curious and unique online campaign that engages customers and gets them thinking about Ikea's wares. It also gets them to allow Ikea access to their Facebook accounts.
This is not Ikea's first creative use of Facebook. Last year, the Swedish furniture-er used Facebook's photo-tagging feature to promote its showroom and goods. The gambit was so popular that it spawned copycats and the brand was forced to shut down counterfeit Ikea-branded pages.
Meanwhile, in a more straight-forward use of online video, Ikea has just launched its third season of Easy to Assemble, a web series about an actress who escapes to a "normal life" as a local IKEA store employee. In 2010, Ad Age called the branded entertainment effort one of the year's "Best Branded Deals."
In related Ikea online viral sensations, the indie short Page 23 is turning heads. Based on a world that "looks too good to be true," the film brings to life an Ikea catalog page as its conceit.
Page 23 (English subtitles) from Jeroen Houben on Vimeo.