Yes, I'm biased. Fabric Interactive's team did the design work for IKEA's Easy To Assemble Season II: Co-Worker of the Year. But the truth is that I think that this is one of the best examples of how to do premium branded entertainment that's actually cool!
I think Illeana Douglas has done something pretty unique with this show. I've seen season II and it's comedy. If you like "The Office" you'll like Easy To Assemble. In fact, I think this show has broad appeal and it can work well world-wide.
From a long-term branding standpoint, IKEA stores everywhere should benefit from this. This show was shot at the IKEA Burbank location, which seems to be celebrity central. If you're a tourist visiting Los Angeles, maybe IKEA Burbank should be on your map?
So what's the impact on IKEA furniture sales? Will this help IKEA sell more tables and chairs? It's a bit early to tell. However, Easy To Assemble is not about selling another chair tomorrow. This is smart long-term branding. It's about positioning: IKEA is cool. IKEA pokes fun at itself.
If you manage this brand, you want to keep IKEA relevant and anchored in current pop-culture. You know that advertising - in the traditional sense - don't play well in the social media stream, so trying new concepts that has the potential to break barriers is important. IKEA must be seen as a smart and innovative brand that dares to do things differently. That's how you get the attention of the 18-24 crowd and they are the next customers for IKEA.
I believe IKEA is smart to do this. Today, you have to try new marketing approaches to keep your brand and product relevant and interesting. Hey Target: You got something cooking?