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Weblog Designer Needed

I contribute to another weblog that focuses on online advertising. We are looking for a designer who is familiar with weblog design and has knowledge of the MoveableType publishing platform. We intend to redesign the site, among other things, and are looking to designers to assist with that. If you are, or know anyone who might be, interested in this, please contact me here.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 5-03    




Reader Involvement Index Puts 'Real Simple' At Top

The Involvement Alliance has put together an index to reflect reader involvement with magazines. Three measurements are used to determine the index: average reading time, percent 4 out of 4 readership, and percent citing magazine as favorite. The data is pulled from MRI. The indexes are then mapped against a particular demo.

This particular index report looks at how magazines index against women 25-49 and women 25-54 with kids. [via MediaPost]
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 5-03    




The Gay PUMA Ad

Here's another ad that pushes the limits. The PUMA ad was fake. This one is real. Although, all someone would have to do is add a little "white stuff" to this ad and would be just as "interesting" as those PUMA spoofs.

This is an actual ad for Patrick Cox Shoes that appeared in the U.K. magazine, i-D. The advertising standards body, a group that monitors ads for "decency" in the U.K., has banned the ad from running again as it was deemed to cause "serious offense" to people. Patrick Cox responded by explaining that ad really isn't all that offensive because, after all, the two men are wearing jockstraps that "made penetrative intercourse impossible".

If you have to explain an ads "decency" with that kind of explanation, then you have to wonder about it in the first place.

Thank to Ad-Rag for this.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 4-03    




Razor Magazine Separates Itself From the Competition

"There's no middle ground for the 20-something past his frat-house years but not yet at the point where he's going to be buying those suits. We embrace success and independence in a way that is, hopefully, mature and thoughtful. When you're 19 years old, maybe you need an article on '20 ways to bring a woman to orgasm.' But when you get towards the end of your 20s, hopefully you're a little beyond that."

That's what publisher, Richard Botto, in a MediaPost article, wants us to realize about Razor Magazine. It's not part of the Maxim, FHM category yet it isn't part of the GQ, $3,000 suit category either. While the magazine does continue to drench it's covers with barley clothed women, Razor's articles are quite a bit more serious than your typical lad mag.

"We don't buy into the prevailing thought that men are mental midgets who are incapable of reading a 5,000-word article," Botto says. "People buy magazines to be entertained, and I'm not saying that other men's magazines aren't entertaining. But I think there's a place in the market for a magazine that aims substantially higher."

I think this is a good place for Razor to be. Men will always be men and will always want to see beautiful women wearing next to nothing or nothing at all. That's just part of our biology and that's not going to change. However, men do actually posses levels of intelligence and a thirst for knowledge beyond knowing the ever changing bra size of Pamela Anderson. So, if a magazine can show me sexy women and contain intellectually stimulation articles, I'm all over it.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 4-03    




Ramp Magazine Gets a Makeover

Ramp Magazine, the magazine that "recognizes that a man�s world expands beyond beer and beautiful women", is getting a face lift and an editorial refocusing according to publisher, Richard Amann.

"[The laddie mags] do what they do really well - why try to emulate that?" he asks rhetorically. "But there's a void once that reader ages a little bit, and that's where we want to be. We want to be the first into that unoccupied space."

So, does that mean that there will be no bikinis and cleavage? I didn't think so. [Via MediaPost]


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by Steve Hall    Jun- 4-03    




Viral Ad of the Day: Make Love, Not Terror

In a nod to current world events, here is a little advertising video, called Homicide Bomber, urging all of us to make love, not terror. In the ad, a stunning Ethiopian model is walking down a famous boulevard in Tel Aviv, Israel. Men are mesmerized by her looks, which cause them to do the usual silly things men do when confronted by a hottie. She strolls down the side walk with nothing but a sheer mini covering her wobbling ass. She finally encounters a homicide bomber with an explosive belt wrapped around waist, on his way to blow up a sidewalk cafe.

While the two are at a standstill, she notices a slight bulge in the bomber's pants. Is it the bomb? Is it something else? The homicide bomber also notices the bulge, which, unfortunately triggers the bomb, causing him to uh...explode in typical male fashion: prematurely. There is a happy ending though. The message Make Love, Not Terror appears in Hebrew, Arabic and English appears at the end and the two, well, you'll have to use your imagination as to what they do next.

From Keta-Keta. Windows Movie Format. Click the image to view the ad.

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by Steve Hall    Jun- 3-03    




Old Navy Spots Win Big Time in Brand Recall

The Intermedia Group's Brand Recall Index Shows Old Navy's Love Boat style spots are at the top of consumers minds in recall.

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by Steve Hall    Jun- 3-03    




Airlines, Shoes, PR, and Weblogs

Flying always has its problems and there's always something to complain about. Most times, you just bitch to your friends about it. But it you have a weblog and you write about your experiences with an airline, or any product or service for that matter, it's not just your friend who gets to hear the story.

Kristin is a Madpony Girl. What's a Madpony girl, you ask? A Madpony Girl is a girl (two actually, sisters) who has a web site and writes about her life (college, her shoes, living in the South, etc). Kristin just took a Southwest Airlines flight from her hometown of Oklahoma City to Phoenix Arizona. Great flight. Good service. But when she landed, things didn't go so well. The airline lost her bags.

Now, if you know Kristen, you know she has a lot of shoes. LOTS of shoes. She can't live without her shoes. So, what's a girl on a trip to Arizona to do without shoes? She begs Southwest to help her on her weblog while chiding the airline at the same time.

"now, i would imagine that you're the kind of multibillion dollar corporation who really wants to know your customers, so let me tell you a little about myself.

i'm 5'8, i'm a college junior, I CANNOT SURVIVE FOR ONE WEEK WITH ONLY ONE PAIR OF SHOES.

makeup is easily replaceable. clothes are bit harder, but i am in scottsdale, the shopping capital of the american desert. i am skeptical of finding another perfect swimsuit, as that can often be somewhat difficult. but there is no way i could replace my collection of beautiful and exotic shoes and sandals.

please hurry southwest. i just don't know what i would do without my cute little cobians. and my bc shoes. and my reefs. and my little esprits with the flowers and the maddens and the little black sandals and the nm70s.

(not so) patiently waiting,

kristin"

A sad story indeed. Innocuous? Maybe. But what happens when hundreds of thousands of people are publishing weblogs? What happens when an ad campaign becomes pointless because everyone can poke a whole in it because they all know the "real" story because they are all reading other people'sweblogs who have had first hand experience with the brand? Kristin was very polite in her criticism. But we all know most people are not that polite. It's something to think about, marketers.

I'd link directly to Kristen's story but her links are broken. Go the Madpony homepage and find the post for Monday, June,2 2003.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 2-03    




The Best Use of Flash in a Long Time

To all you Flash designers out there, take a look at this site. in my mind, it's the best Flash site I have seen in a long time. Too bad we don't see more of this stuff. and I don't mean the semi-nude photos either. I mean the way cool design. Take a Look. Thanks to ApeChild for finding this one.

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by Steve Hall    Jun- 2-03    




The Marketing of Hotties

There used to be a time when babes were literally babes until they were not. Namely until the reached 18 or 21. Now, we have jailbait being marketed rampantly. OK, maybe that's a harsh assessment. But there's no where you can turn these days without seeing some hot 15 or 17 year old staring you back in the face. How's a guy supposed to react to that? Be attracted to the girl? Feel like a pedophile? A girl in a sexy outfit is a girl in a sexy outfit. Yea, yea, yea, there are limits. Don't get all bible on me.

The point is....um...uh...damn, I just forgot. I just got distracted by those pictures. You don't care what my point is anyway, you just want to look at the pictures!

And besides, so do I. So I'm going to stop preaching about it and just sit back and enjoy it. Bring it on! Distract me. Stare back at me and make me believe I'm actually a hot 22 year old guy. Make me believe that you actually want me....to talk to you. Let me see that vast 2.5 months of sexual experience glimmer from your sultry eyes. Bare your belly and squeeze your cleavage for me as I...oh wait....sorry...this isn't a porn site. This is supposed to be all about serious advertising news. Porn? Advertising? Aren't they the same thing anyway? Alright, so advertising is a little different than porn, I guess. Thee two industries sell themselves but advertising people do with their clothes on. Mostly.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 2-03    




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