BlackBerry Be Bold campaign commercials hit the airwaves

By Adam Zeis on 1 Feb 2012 11:41 am EST

RIM is really ramping up their "Be Bold" campaign going into 2012. We've seen plenty of Be Bold-ness around on Twitter and the like so far, and now they have rolled out some new commercials as well. Much like their BBM and Love What You Do series of ads, the Be Bold commercials show off BlackBerry users putting their phones to use in daily life. These are the first in what we expect are many Be Bold ads to come. Some are new while a few are older ads that have just been "boldified". Check out more after the break!

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

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BlackBerry Be Bold campaign commercials hit the airwaves


I say that to all of the people that rag on me about my Bold. Its a tool, not a toy. If you want a toy then the iPhone is great, but in order to get stuff done there is no beating a blackberry.

I saw at least a few of those commercials and have to say that thay're well done. It's about catching the eye and then showing the device afterwards.

That's actually pretty stupid fanboy rhetoric and not the adage that RIM needs to spout in their commercials. RIM sorely needs a new marketing team and CMO!

Like you? Kinda sick of hearing all these people that know how to "fix" RIM. Post your resume or stfu please.

Shake your head - bet it rattles. (just a little humor)

Apple had decided to produce a product line to consume media. A very good product, does its job very well.

BB has decided to build a product line to produce products and services, as well as manage and secure the data and intellectual property of those products. Very good products, they do their jobs well.

The difference being toys Vs Tools.

Awesome concept.

Both North American Companies - We need to support them both - as your needs determine.

+1 on "Tools not toys" thats exactly what a blackberry has always been to me, except that now it can be fun too when you want it to be!

That line put a smile on my face :)

In one of the next ads they should also include that line from Thorsten or Alec (can't remember exactly) 'blackberry is for doers, not viewers'

Tools not Toys!! Great slogan!! I've always said BlackBerrys are smartphones iphone/androids are gamephones.

He made a strong point! 500+ emails 50+ instant messages a day (via BBM of course). That is action m******ers! :D

Agreed! RIM has totally missed the mark with the ad campaign if they are using the ads to acquire additional CrackBerry addicts in the consumer market (vs enterprise market). A tagline such as "I need tools, not toys" suggests that BB's are productivity tools and not fun-time wasting devices that most consumers want. Most consumers want to kill time playing games (eg Angry Birds), facebooking, twittering, and viewing YouTube videos on their phones (smart and superphones).

If the ads are designed to add and maintain enterprise users then my comments above can be ignored.

I couldn't have said it better myself, and thought the same exact thing when I saw the first commercial about, the tools not toys comment.

The general consumer, here in the US want toys. Which is why iPhone and Android are so popular. I do not know why they keep repeating the same mistakes over and over!

They can make a "professional" phone while still making it "fun" too. They need to advertise that! They are missing the mark, once again.

Also, these style ads, are lame. They haven't worked in the past, why do they continue to make them?

The funny thing about these shots taken at the iPhone is that it has many more business apps and applications then a BB. How many business mags and papers have apps on a BB? How many good financial stock apps are on a BB? It's stupid fanboy rhetoric and these adds are not getting the job done (even though I like their style).

It's about quality, not quantity. At least the BlackBerry can make a phone call no matter how you're holding it.

Someone is a little too sensitive...
I rarely see people clamoring about their business mags/apps on their iphone's. They are usually more about showing me the latest game they have or what they can ask Siri to do...after a while and lots of mistakes.

I think they were taking a shot at all the critics who have been clamoring forever about apps apps APPS!

Sure, they have admitted that they working on more apps then they had before but I think they still maintain that they are more about productivity not toys/games/distractions.

The Apps will come, but it won't if you keeping such a downer.

You're both making a good point and missing what RIM needs to accomplish with these ads. I think a lot of US consumers don't think you can facebook, twitter, and YouTube on a BB, and RIMs campaign should address the fact that BB7 is pretty good for all these things. But they also need to not overreach. If someone is buying a phone to play games, surf the web, screw around with apps, and check email, then a BB7 phone is not for them. In fact, RIM would be better off if that person didn't buy a BB7 phone and thus didn't have a tainted view of BB when BB10 phones come along.

Really, BBs have always been communications tools, and BB7 is great for that with decent web-browsing and decent versions of a lot of core apps. But if "most" consumers really want lots of games and apps then BB doesn't have what consumers want (which is presumably where BB10 comes in). RIM has a problem that a lot of people think of a Curve running BBOS4 when they think BlackBerry, they need to use this campaign to upgrade that image, but that only helps so much. To actually drive sales they need to understand where BB is superior and that means concentrating on the communications aspect of their phoness, cause that's where they can compete with and even beat iOS and Android.

It sounds like Lance Riddick. He was on the Wire. He also did some stuff on a few episodes of Law and Order, if in fact that is Lance Riddick.

Agreed! Its the ONLY one that actually shows what the phone can do.

The other commercials show somebody playing with a Blackberry that looks like every other Blackberry, smh

Why wont they show what the PHONE can do!?

Show off OS7, show off the touch+type+trackpad combo, the advantages of the keyboard and notification light, option to customize.

Come on RIM!!

More of the same - just like those old ads with the surfer and the low-rider dudes. RIM seems to want to put the 'characters' first in the ads, and then 'oh and we use a BlackBerry' at the very end. The device isn't the main focus.

When oh when will you learn RIM.....

The general consumer (where RIM is lacking in the US market) doesn't want tools. They want toys!

Come on RIM! get with it! How are you so blind?

They can't say it when they don't have it. I'm sure when the new phones come out they will mention some of the "distraction" stuff, but even then I do like the "tool, not toys" and "action, not distraction" messages as a way to set RIM apart.

Blackberrys are get sh*t done devices. I hope the news phone will keep that while adding fun stuff too, but to simply out iPhone the iPhone is a dumb strategy. Objective one maintain a lead in messaging and netowrking and then add the best apps.

Simple example "flag for follow up" along with "alt f" is simple but extreemly useful for me. When I spent some quality time with my wife's iPhone I couldn't figure out how to flag for follow up. I'm not saying it can't be done but it isn't easy/obvious.

RIM is not about toys. The current lineup of BlackBerry phones cannot compete with other platforms in terms of 'fun'. What RIM is trying to do is to merge its reputation as a reliable communications workhorse with the world of entertainment. I believe they want to do it the BlackBerry way, which will produce a device that is fun to have but also has bullet proof security and durability.

Nice but they should show something that a Blackberry does that the competition doesn't do....Pinch to zoom is so 2000 and late.

More of the commercials need to focus on the ACTUAL USE of the PHONE.

To your average consumer, this new Bold looks like your same old boring Blackberry .

There are STILL people out there who don't realize that this is a touchscreen phone, has apps, and that the web browser has improved tremendously!

They need to show the versatility of touch, type, and trackpad! Put some of the focus on your advantage: the big beautiful keyboard!!

Its nice to finally see some ads, but come on!!! This is to the time to show what the new Bold and OS 7 can do!!!

I need tools, not toys
How about
I have tools and toys
I'm about action, not distraction
How about
I'm about action, but like to have fun also

Just mix and match but I repply to iphone and android people number 1 also All I need is here and it works, I run my business literally from my phone.

Hoppe RIM put keys on BB10 phones.

i agree with what you're saying. there's no reason why blackberries can't be fun as well.

Don't take yourselves to seriously!
I really loved that AT&T advert that introduced the torch and had the buddy holly song playing

business meet fun. kinda goes against the whole im about action not distraction etc.

I much prefer the whole business meets fun tagline.

Great lines.

Really, the BlackBerry Bold 9930 is not a toy and there are better phones for that. I like they are just calling it like it is. Be Bold and be honest.

Keep them coming.

BlackBerry Rocks!

I think this is a good start... I particularly liked the one showcasing the keyboard. I really think they need to focus on the great keyboard of the 9900 more, plus I agree with the general statement that we need to start focusing on some of the best apps for BlackBerry i.e. show BlackBerry Travel saving some dude a long walk to the wrong gate at the airport or something.

Actually on second thought: Let's have Scarlett Johannsen telling us how we wouldn't have been able to have seen her boobs on the internet if she had only picked the "right" phone.

I must have missed the good part. The guys talked about twitter and sending messages to fans. I didn't catch anything they said that wouldn't apply to EVERY smartphone on the market.

As for the toys/tools bit, you mean it doesn't have Angry Birds?

Not sure if anyone noticed but they showcased Wikitude in the Bike one, and they used the app in a prime example (meeting up with biker buddys, went to Wikitude to see exactly how far/what route they're on) people on bikes wont be like "almost by you" he watched the moving BBM icons on Wikitude and joined in as they approached. I thought that was awesome. I don't know anyone who uses Wikitude so I don't use it but if I could, I would lol

Adam, I hope Thorsten is following the blogs on his number 1 blackberry fan site. SOME of these comments are really helpful. I know Blackberry started out in buisness and still focuses there but yes "I need Tools not Toys" does focus primarily at the buisness side. I feel they need a new commercial/campain that focuses at once on both. A commercial with a father and son or Mother and daughter or the like both with Blackberrys and showing what they can do for both. Not just communication and functionality (yes both are important) but the fun side of life for both generations. (39 yrs old).

I'm sorry.... But all of these ads are the furthest thing from bold. I want to fall asleep watching these ads. They tell me NOTHING about why I should buy into the BB concept. We need real; Bold; 'in you face here is my Blackberry and you want one too' kind of ad.

i like the ads but i don't understand the fragmenting approach.

Why just the bold. Why doesn't every commercial include all models while 1 or 2 are featured. So people watching know that hey bb has a full touch screen phone and, oh, they have a slider and, ooh that bold has bling and is that 9900 typing on and controlling that playbook.

The excitement is in the full featured family.

be torch

be curve

yeah I agree with you. need to show more reasons other than showcasing their flagship phone. a lot of teenagers, single mums blah blah use blackberries and not everyone is engaging a blackberry with business.

We already know blackberries are good for business. why keep harping on that fact.

I feel thorsten is bending backwards to appeal to current users and business types and doesn't feel the need to expand to the markets that's they're ignoring.

the iphone might be considered a toy (i certainly think so) but it's one of the best selling "toys" out there :P

business meets fun needs to jump out again

i'd also like to see a commercial where someone is videotaping Tim Cook in a mock episode of Under Cover Boss, in China! While shooting the footage ,on a bb device of course.

Do you know why the iPhone commercials are so effective?? BECAUSE THEY SHOW YOU WHAT YOU CAN DO ON AN iPHONE!!! The first commercial here shows the device in their hands for three seconds. The food guy has his phone out for 5 seconds. Music Guy is 4 seconds, and that’s if I include where he throws it behind his back. The “Night Bikes” commercial shows the phone being used for a total of 7 seconds.

Look, WE all know what BBM is, but to the people who don't it looks like texting. Ooohh.... you can TEXT from a Blackberry. WOW!!

"I'll take a picture of me with the crowd, we Tweet from here..." Big F'n deal. Seriously. EVERY phone does that. How about showing the stuff that other phone lack. 1.2 GHz vs 800MHz, More RAM, expandable storage up to 32GB... show someone USING it like the Touch and Type commercial, not glow in the dark bikes, which, let's face it, STEAL the show.

Here's the simplest commercial. Show a device. voice-over guy says, "The new Blackberry 7 phones have... " he gives all of the specs. While this is happening, on screen you can see things happening on the phone, but it keeps changing which phone. Starts with a 9900, (Classic design: screen up top, keyboard below) Then it switches to the Torch 9850/9860. (showing a full touch screen, like the iPhone/Android competition) Then it switches to the Torch 9810, showing the touch screen, and then the slider goes up to show the keyboard.

All this time, the voice-over guy is talking about the power and speed of the phones, and the phone screens are showing features like Email, BBM, Blackberry Traffic (HIGHLY under rated!!), Hi-Def Video, Facebook and Twitter and on and on.

Finally, the Voice-over guy says, "Blackberry. The power and speed you need on the devices that let you Be Bold.”

The whole commercial has product on the screen the whole time. It shows people using it the whole time. It shows the variety of phones you can get with Blackberry. Simple. Geeez...No wonder they’re looking for a new marketing person. These commercials are pure crap.

You're right. THESE commercials don't show the device or what it can do. That's a bad commercial. The iPhone ads are only "cute" because they put baby-ish music behind them, but the point that they are making with those is that their product makes things "Simple". I didn't say that we should have our commercials show things as "Simple". I said we should show POWER and SPEED and Variety, and for gods sake, SHOW THE PRODUCT doing what it does!

Tools not toys? I am rooting for a BB comeback but Apple and Android have far better "tools" than bb right now. All BB has is their kb. An no I am not a fanboy! Come on RIM lets make BB10 a killer!!

I like these commercials. Commercials are like new songs they need to be played played played.

The "we need tools, not toys" was kind of harsh the first time I saw it but after a few views it starts to make sense, a BlackBerry point of view.

I like "action not distraction".

I think all of these commercials get much better after a few views. Great variety.

I see consistency in the commercials. A consistent not toys!

I just need RIM to stop. Stop with these commercials aimed at people who want to be productive to lure them to upgrading to the new hot BB of the moment. We already use BBs and probably will continue to because WE'RE PRODUCTIVE PEOPLE.

Plus the commercials lose you in the first 5 seconds or so, if you're not a BB addict, because you have to pay too much attention to them. Consumers want entertainment, fun, ease of use and simplification of daily tasks - which BBs do quite effectively but RIM has no idea how to market the hell out of this side of their products.

The commercials were ok, but the end quotes were good on both
I'm surprise Rim is actually poking the competition lol they always
been laid back in all Ads

Research In Motion has finally jumped the shark. These Be Bold are juvenile to the extreme. These will NOT attract professionals though it might snag a few Generation Y socialites.

Guys in sweatshirts trying to produce electronic music?? Give me a break and show successful businessmen and women using Blackberries while closing deals, using BB traffic to find restaurants and hotels, and MMS pics to their wife and kids!!

I need tools not toys.
Action not distraction.

And I say:
I have fun when I get shit done!

That's why I love my Blackberry!

Phone NEEDS to be featured, they have great tag lines but not enough of what the phone can do. I believe the Tools not Toys come from the many business switching over to iPhones. If only you showed the consumer what you can actually do on the playbook, torch, bold, the sales will increase as that is usually all I have to do to convince people I know to buy them is let them play with my devices for about 5 minutes.

Here is an a user loading files onto the playbook over wifi in the morning, going to a job site and taking video while checking email, bbm, and a word doc all at the same time, then presenting the same video to a group of people using a powerpoint and video from earlier with the playbook plugged into the hdmi port of a would still give blackberry it's story while showcasing the also mirrors my typical day!

I'm in real estate and the reason I have a Bold 9700 (still, and i'm def looking for a 9900) is because I'm about action, not distraction....

The point of advertising is twofold: show the product, and show people using/enjoying the product.

I enjoy the slogans personally, because I always considered my BB a communication device. I can get things done when I'm at work, but I can also kill time with games and apps if I desire.

The DJ commercial shows ease of use, since music production is involved. So if you can communicate with a BB while putting together music and vocals for a song, it's gotta be fairly easy to use in some respect, right?

The restaurant supplier demonstrates the business end of the BB. Push email gets info to people fast (there are times I get an email on my BlackBerry before I get it in my inbox) and BBM captializes on sending messages,pictures, and documents faster than any text message can.

The bike commercial shows the augmented reality aspect with Wikitude-like programs to coordinate with your buddies on something enjoyable. Form and function, people.

This is the beginning. It's not the end all be all...but it is a start. There are areas each commercial miss, but all together they showcase the Bold 9900 in a manner that at least puts it in a good light compared to how most people see BlackBerry.

"WE NEED TOOLS NOT TOYS!" If Blackberry doesn't ADOPT this as it's SLOGAN for BLACKBERRY 10 and get rid of this "BE BOLD" stuff, then we, the Blackberry Community, DESERVE what we are getting!!! PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE RIM, THIS...IS...THE...SLOGAN!!! It's Attention grabbing & places you back in your Arena as opposed to trying to chase theirs! NO ONE ELSE CAN COMPETE WITH THIS SLOGAN, because it's TRUE!!! And Blackberry is #1 when it comes to actual TOOLS!