GE Plays Leapfrog, We Like Where It's Going

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This new leapfrog ad by GE uses playful animation to marry love of innovation to harmony with the natural world. We think the frog, which echoes the adorable Geico gecko, is a little scrawny for all that hardcore hopping but we like the ad anyway.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Online



Future Marketing Summit Fast Approaches to Bear Brimfire for Naughty Marketers

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The Adave miracle phone promises to do everything the iPhone failed to: it will read for us, deal with clients for us and get all our media work done. We clicked "Buy it now" faster than we should have and were instantly forced into the raw white light of confusing, bewildering conference information.

Awww. We'd declare shenanigans, but the Guilt is too overwhelming.

This year's Future Marketing Summit: NY takes place on March 5 at the Broad Street Ballroom. Speakers include SVP Esther Lee of Coca-Cola, creative director Luanne Calvert of Google, Colin Drummond of CP+B, and a passel of other super awesome bigwigs that could only look like rock stars to us.

The running theme is "Integration" and session one is called "Reality Check." Oh, that's blistering. Does this mean no magic phone?

Apparently not. Slacker. Register here.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Events, Industry Events



Turbo Tax Does Tax Rap With Vanilla Ice

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Sort of along the lines of logic (or complete and purposeful lack there of) that resulted in Robert Goulet appearing in an Emerald Nuts Super Bowl commercial, Intuit has tapped Vanilla Ice (where the hell has he been all these years?) to front a Tax Wrap promotion for Turbo Tax. The promotion offers $25,000 to the person who makes the best homemade rap demo about taxes. So far, there aren't too many submissions and they are all embarrassingly horrible. We really don't know what to do with this one. Trash it for its use of a has-been to get all jiggy with one of the most financially serious periods in a person's life or praise it for its brilliant quirkiness and kitschy badness.

by Steve Hall    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Online, Promotions, Social, Strange, Video



Bottle Openers Take Heads Off to Show How Trains Do It

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According to CSX Transportation it's common for co-eds to wander drunkenly onto traintracks in dead of night and die grisly railroad deaths that often involve bright lights, loud noises, metal on flesh and decapitation.

(We've also heard this happens to koalas in the wild. Drunk off eucalyptus, they fall off their trees and are often hit by cars. But that's a digression.)

To get the word out to college students, agency Exit10 of Baltimore distributed wallet-sized bottle openers that portray a man being decapitated when used. We thought this was a silly idea until we actually saw the bottle opener. Now we just feel very uncomfortable. "This is what a train can do to your body," reads the sober black text against the metal finish.

The sight of it made us rub our necks and put down our requisite Adrants martini. Dude. Talk about a buzzkill.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Good, Packaging, Promotions, Strange



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McDonald's Needs Kids With Imagination

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In this commercial, we're not sure whether McDonald's is telling us all kids have an active imagination or whether their food is an addictive hallucinogenic. Or maybe, they have to make us hallucinate in order to make us believe McDonald's is actually a place you'd want to eat. Oddly, it works. Mostly because it's not your average McDonald's spot. It was created by Leo Burnett in Sydney and the the effects were done by Fuel International.

On a semi-completely unrelated note, a friend tells us she sat next to a guy on an airplane trip whose company manufactured flavors. Flavors for everything. Every taste. The man's biggest customer? McDonald's If you have to add beef flavor to a hamburger, you know something is definitely just not right. No matter how convincing a commercial might be.

by Steve Hall    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Strange



STA Borrows Globe Idea, We Shake Heads in Righteous Disgust

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No idea's original, but in any field the taboo is the same: if even a successful idea can be traced back to somebody else's sleeper hit, fingers get pointed. For a shining example, just look at Suzuki's attempts to be BMW.

A source tells us elements of the STA World Traveler Contest are suspiciously similar to an existing campaign that's lesser-known but more complete in scope. St. Georges School in the Grenada West Indies used the same pinpricked-globe format to highlight, not starry-eyed co-eds, but far-flung alumni they've accumulated over 30 years. Visit the St. Georges website and click on the 30 year anniversary logo at bottom left to catch the similarities.

If you don't feel like clicking back and forth, that's okay; we'll show you.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Agencies, Bad, Campaigns, Online



Rubik's Cube Gets Bells and Whistles, No Prize in the Middle

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Long the symbol of manhood for geeks of all generations, the traditional Rubik's Cube gets dolled-up for ... well, we're not sure who for. Anybody who likes the Rubik's Cube likes it for its original frustrating merits and the countless number of secret solutions that have been passed from geek to geek for centuries.

Nonetheless, somebody thinks the Cube's appeal can be improved with bright blinking lights, programmed electronic games, multiplayer play and a new name: Rubik's Revolution. That's flashy. But if you're going to tamper with an original by making it all pretty and blinky, at least put a prize in the middle. And not just any prize. We're thinking Stella Artois chalice of beer, here. Otherwise, why bother?

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Games



Valentines' Day Present 'So Much BiggerThan I Thought'

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When you mix cheesy with double entendre, what do you get? An oddly watchable two minute commercial for Vermont Teddy Bear. On has to assume this was purposefully created to be, well, bad. Cheesy bad. We suppose a Teddy Bear might be a great Valentine's Day gift. It's easier to buy than jewelry. It's definitely cheaper. And if it makes your girl go, "so much bigger than I thought," it just might be worth buying.

by Steve Hall    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Commercials, Strange



Obama Launches Social Networking Site

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It's not the first time a political candidate will have used social networking as part of a campaign strategy, but it's probably the first time a political candidate has ever created his or her own social networking site.

Enter My Barack Obama, a social networking space dedicated to users who'd like to help Obama get into the White House in '08. He also has a MySpace that's of course not made or endorsed by him but by some very serious fan out there who happens to have little to do but make thousands of friends on his behalf.

There's not too much you can say to trash a guy who acknowledges his own lack of qualifications and admits to doing drugs in college. But we've all seen how internet influence can make or break you. A word of warning, Obama: remember Howard Dean.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Good, Online, Social



Match Resorts to Webcam in Ongoing Battle Against True

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True.com has colonized sex so effectively, dating sites that once mistook sex for neutral domain are now scrambling for the next Holy Grail of human characteristics.

So in its ongoing quest to find a personality, Match.com resorts to the webcam, a tactic shared by those bastard cousins of dating sites, amateur porn purveyors. "See who's on Match.com right now FREE!" a banner bubbles while running videos of attractive people drinking coffee and taking off their shoes.

The effort is unsettling. We don't know if it'll help draw hot single traffic, but we did stare for a long time. This is mainly because we harbor the quiet hope people will forget they're being watched and do something to satisfy our voyeuristic desire to witness something childish but unsavoury, like ball-scratching or nose-picking.

But these things didn't happen. Maybe they should. Maybe that would turn the ads into winners. It's hard to tell at this point and we don't see much hope for the future because Match.com changes campaigns faster than Mr. Rogers changed his sweaters.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    








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