Comics Riff on eBay’s Charms

Goodby, Silverstein & Partners uses humor — and veteran comedians like Jim Gaffigan, Michael Ian Black, Michael Showalter and Kevin Hart — in a multimedia campaign for online auction house eBay.

“Come to think of it, eBay,” is the tagline, intended to stress the service’s wide selection of products and low prices to both longtime users and newbies.

In TV spots, the comics share their eBay stories.

An ad called “Thought” finds Gaffigan despairing in his trademark tongue-in-cheek whiny style over homemade gifts. “No one wants them,” he whispers, holding a pair of knitted mittens with an elderly aunt or grandma sitting nearby. He adds: “I know it’s the thought that counts, but think harder. How about a snowmobile!” From atop a high-tech model as the engines rev, he continues: “Doesn’t have to be expensive — go to eBay!”

In “Camera,” Black uses his latest inexpensive eBay purchase to chronicle Showalter’s tattoo-parlor session, which is going terribly wrong.

In another commercial, Hart is seen on the driving range, riffing on a designer dress purchase his wife made on eBay.

All told, there are nine different TV spots, more than a dozen digital vignettes starring the comics, seven magazine ads and OOH outreach, as well as standard banner ads and various rich-media executions.

This marks eBay’s first concerted brand push in almost two years, and comes as the company, though still popular, has found itself under increasing pressure to remain relevant in the face of heightened competition and the onslaught of social media.

Media spending via Omnicom-owned Goodby in San Francisco was not disclosed.