Intel's lifestyle ads have been around forever, in fact, inspiring Apple's own marketing direction in the 80s. But everyone does this now, and so, they're changing things up after all these years.
The campaign has two major slogans: "our rock stars are not like your rock stars", or variations on the "not like your" theme and "sponsoring the future". The first is interesting, and played out like so:
It's true. What and who is important inside the geek world is not important to the mainstream, always. The portrayal of the geek as a hero does a few things, I imagine. It shows mainstream folks the fantasy of what exactly the geek world worships, in a context they can understand—that of the celebrity—even if they don't understand why its such a big deal. To the geeks, the video is clearly ridiculous, and the slogan lets the viewer know that the company is self aware of that fact. At the same time, the fantasy is brought to life that geeks are rock stars, in their own context, but here they get to taste the pop context, too.
The other slogan, "Sponsors of Tomorrow", is pushed nicely in this "our big ideas are not like your big ideas" video:
There's something about this video, humorous, and friendly, yet pointing out the oddity of the geek world, that reminds me of JJ Abrams' new Star Trek.
The videos, unfortunately do not feature the actual inventors. They said it was to avoid internal politics and fights over who would star, but I really just think geeks don't test that well on camera. Except Woz.
The campaign is Intel's most expensive, and they plan to run it three years, in so many variations, comparing the geek world to the real world equivalents, noting their differences, but ultimately drawing parallels. It also is the first not to talk about Intel's products directly, preferring to let go of the idea that people can understand the technology inside as meaningful, moving towards general brand promotion. It's clever, and entertaining and I like these ads a lot, so far.