Slate Hates AT&T's New Campaign

ATT's Racially Correct Ad

Commenting on AT&T's new $200 million ad campaign and particularly one of its television spots, Slates' Seth Stevenson gives an Adrants-worthy review saying, "...the worst thing (not just with the spot but with the whole campaign) is that the central, defining, overarching element ? is a punctuation mark! It's a $200 million media buy that's built on a freaking ampersand!"

Calling the campaign's attempt at racial harmony, Stevenson comments on the faces in the spot that "stare directly into the camera, and convey to us that their lives are made better with the help of a multinational services company.

Sometimes these spots will cut away from the faces (often to a skyscraper or bullet train), and sometimes the faces give monologues. Either way, the central visual concept is high-contrast racial juxtapositions (a shtick that hasn't been thoughtful or eye-grabbing since Benetton did it 15 years ago); the target mood is "uplifting"; and the result is utterly numbing and indistinguishable because it's so completely played out by now. Thanks, AT&T, for adding to the pile."

We're with you Seth.

by Steve Hall    Jun- 8-04    

Hot Women Lure Men to Read

Called "Good Booking Girl," Penguin Books has launched a street marketing effort in which a sexy model will prance the streets in search of men reading a selected Penguin Books title. Each month, Penguin will select a different book for promotion and award 1,000 pound ($1,837) to men found to be reading the title. OK, so now men, who already display an innate clumsiness during everyday gawking, will be challenged to gawk, walk and read all while hunting down the hot Penguin Books' chic. Drivers, watch out for stumbling, horny men with books.

by Steve Hall    Jun- 8-04    

Get Your Marketing Paws Off My Tween

A special interest group has sent a letter to the FCC today requesting the body force market researchers to turn over tween-focused studies to determine whether collection of online data aids marketers in targeting kids. While the studies are gathered, the group has also asked the FCC to place a moratorium on interactive advertising targeted to kids.

by Steve Hall    Jun- 8-04    

School Committee Gives In, Accepts Bus Advertising

Calling it "not ideal" yet adding it "will help keep a teacher in the classroom," Seekonk, MA School Business Manager Joseph Delude announced the school district unanamously passed a policy allowing advertising on the town's school busses. The move was made partially because the school district will not receive any state aid for buss transportation next year. Many more cash-strapped towns will go down this questionable road as well finding it diffucult to resist advertiser's dollars in the face of negatively lopsided school budgets.

by Steve Hall    Jun- 8-04    

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