Already appearing on posters and wearing the designer's clothing during performances, actress and rocker Juliette Lewis recently appeared topless, draped between two chairs in a dressing room, in an ad campaign for designer Johan Lindeberg. The nude ad is viewable on the Lindeberg site.
Today, Weblogs Inc. blog Joystiq reports receiving a slew of emails last week, apparently from individual readers tipping the site to the appearance of the game Perfect Dark Zero at Wal-Mart's Xbox 360 kiosks over the weekends.
Joystiq tracked all the emails back to the same IP address - a dead giveaway all the emails, even though they came from different names and email addresses, came from the same place. This is standard practice for spoof/spam/sham marketers who haven't yet figured out how to spoof their IP address prior to sending their marketing spam. Would it have been so bad to simply send Joystiq and honest email from Perfect Dark Zero's PR agency or their ad agency telling the editor that, gee, your readers might find it interesting that the product will be demoed at Wal-Mart this weekend? Why bother with all the "tips" when a simple email would have done the trick. Joysiq, knowing its readers interest in this product, would have certainly written about it anyway without having to have been duped.
It's hard to grasp the mindset of some marketers who, facing a media landscape with more enthusiast and niche sites willing to gush at length about particular topics like never before, would stoop to such clandestine stealth methods when these sites are just dying to gush forth endlessly about their area of expertise. Clearly, some marketers remain clueless about weblogs, fan sites, or whatever name you want to slap on this whole new genre of consumer generated media. Wake up and smell the blog, marketers!
Tomorrow, Ford Motor Company will launch Where Will Zephyr Take You for its 2006 Lincoln Zephyr. It's a sweepstakes site with prizes such as trips to New York, Miami and LA to feats at fancy eateries while staying in Hyatt Hotels. The site will be promoted with ad banners on Sports Illustrated, CBSsportsonline, New York Times MSNBC and MSN. Offline advertising will include magazine inserts and moving sidewalk ads. Currently, the site contains product placeholder information so we have no idea how goos or bad the promo is. We'll check it out tomorrow.
Recently, Geico launched Golden Gecko, an effort to encourage people to submit their own 15 second ads for the insurance company. Here's one that's fairly funny an employs the usual "you idiot" payoff at the end.
Adrants reader Samara Grant writes to tell us she's concerned about Wal-Mart's recent Precious Jewel ad featuring Ashanti. Grant writes, "In her ad she talks about her belief that all young girls are 'precious.' But it is a contradiction to say at the end of ad that her fragrance is a 'sensual' scent. I don't think young girls should wear something that is called "sensual" if they are told in the previous sentence how 'precious' they are. If Ashanti wants to impress young girls and get them as her fans, she needs to put a little more clothes on. It's disgusting and very degrading and is also sending these young girls the wrong message."
Well, like we said in another post, stereotypes are rampant in advertising and so is the urge to grab youth while they are young and vulnerable. Currently, hot pop and Hollywood stars are the way to do it. But, that perpetuates the 12-year-old slut conundrum. Conversely, as Tia Fix writes, at one point in time, youth and sex were quite normal.
Adrants reader John sends in a couple of virals (one, two) that appear to be for Swedish health food maker Risenta. The videos feature a provincially dressed guy spouting his love for his mother country and all things Swedish. In the first video, he finds a Rezento snack and in the second he harasses a woman with the snack telling her she simply has to try it because it's so healthy. Mildly amusing but if these are for an actual food company, they're sort of pointless unless it's a bit more clear what they're actually about. Call us dumb but we like to know what we're being told.
UPDATE: We have been clued in. While we searched and search and searched, Google didn't like our spelling of Risenta so we were at a loss. Commenter Joe pointed us to the right place.
To promote the TBS global warming awareness show, Earth to America, LA-based agency/production company Stun Creative has produced Earth to America, a 2-minute short starring Jack Black and directed by Jay Roach. It also features the Six Feet Under dead dad guy.
Currently running in theaters to raise global warming awareness, the short stars Black, doing his usual shtick, as an attorney who sues corporate America on behalf of the nation's children. Earth to America also promotes two upcoming events: a full-length comedy special of the same name that will air on TBS in November and a star-studded comedy showcase taking place on November 19, 2005, the final day of the HBO Comedy Festival in Las Vegas. The Earth to America project is Executive Produced by celeb environmentalist Laurie David.
Feminist Naomi Wolf says that the beauty myth isn't good for men or women. "It prevents (men) from actually seeing women...in suggesting a vision in place of a woman, it has a numbing effect, reducing all sense but the visual..."
That's a fairly poignant statement regarding the numbification of society because marketing images portray impossible-to-achieve beauty and the representation of women as playthings. Granted, marketers are never going to show an ugly slob in an ad because no one wants to see a slob and we all aspire to something greater. But if all we see are unachievable representations of ourselves then certain unhealthy illusions of self are sure to emerge. And have. Just visit a highschool hallway.
About Face, whose mission is "to promote positive self-esteem in girls and women of all ages, sizes, races and backgrounds through a spirited approach to media education, outreach and activism," examines the portrayal of women, specifically, in advertising and comments on how damaging the images can be to the psyche of consumers. Part of the site has a list of the top ten marketers who, in the opinion of About Face, damage society through their imagery of women advertising.
For the launch of Minneapolis-based Pocket Hercules, the agency created a film which portrays the big holding companies and a bunch of overlording control freaks who are about the get the crap beat out of them by a new breed of smaller, more nimble agencies, namely Pocket Hercules. in the new world of advertising. Funny stuff. And, no doubt, more coming from that direction as holding companies loose touch with reality and become irrelevant. And that's just one of the ads in this week's Ad Age TV Spots of the Week column.
Created by Arnold as one of its last pieces of work in its ten year relationship with the car maker and five separate production companies, Volkswagen has launched 120 :15 web films, each of which highlight an individual feature of the new 2006 Passat. Twenty five films launch earlier this month and 25 more are due next week. The films can be viewed on VW's home page.