Palm teases Pre with Jimmy Fallon

March 10, 2009

Call it a case of doing more with less. Or maybe, how Palm advertises a product without, you know, paying for advertising.

Thats what happened last night with a de facto infomercial for Palm’s as-yet unreleased iPhone rival, the Pre, on Jimmy Fallon’s late night talk show. The five-minute segment between Fallon and Engadget Editor-in-chief Joshua Topolsky (and subsequent distribution of the video around the web), is the kind of marketing that Palm — whose market capitalization is easily 1/70th of iPhone maker Apple — probably couldn’t afford as typical commercials.

You have to give some credit to the marketing minds at Palm. For all their missteps — the Folio comes to mind — they have managed to score viral hits that create buzz for their limited line of mobile phones.

Years ago, a hidden-in-plain-site leaked photo of the Palm Treo 600 in the hands of founder Jeff Hawkins (at an event about something completely different) sent smartphone fanboys a-fluttering. And at this year’s CES, in the midst of PR blitzes from the like of Sony, Samsung and Microsoft, Palm’s unveiling of the Pre phone walked away with the buzz crown.

One wonders what is next. Might there be a tie-in on the horizon with U2’s Bono — an investor in Elevation Partners, which owns a piece of Palm? Could we see a launch event with Bono flashing a Pre and belting out “Hello, Hello” from the chorus of the hit song “Vertigo”??

Oh wait… Apple (which might have a beef with Palm over the Pre) did that already in an iPod commercial. Nevermind…

(Photo: Screenshot of NBC’s Jimmy Fallon Show)

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