VIA (The Small One) Rebrands As Plaid, Launches Brand Aid '07 Tour
Perhaps to avoid confusion with much larger shop, Portland-based Via, or simply to reflect the agency's model of bringing in outside talent, smaller, lesser-known VIA (Visual Intelligence Agency) from Connecticut is re-branding itself Plaid. In doing so, the agency is launching Brand Aid 2007, a three week summer road tour during which agency personal will hop in a van, travel across the country to visit clients, prospective clients and share the social media love with all while web 2.0ing the whole thing with videos posted on YouTube and other content published on social media style sites such as Twitter. Twitter Tripping. That's a new one.
Rather than going it alone and funding it on it's own - though the agency promise it will take the trip regardless of funding, Plaid is looking for sponsors who, they promise, will reap the benefits of publicity that is sure, they claim, to shower this tour. While we're not so sure about that, we can't fault an agency for going about promotion a bit differently with at least the intent towards using emerging media to do so.
Perhaps it will be a Agency.com Subway video disaster. Perhaps it won't providing the entire ad industry a three week long, Big Brother-style form of entertainment as we get to laugh at ourselves and what we do in this industry on a daily basis. Perhaps they'll stop at Crispin Porter + Bogusky in Miami and challenge the agency to a Pimp My Agency contest or a BK Whopper eating contest. If anything, they'll get to visit Miami Beach and hit all the clubs. We'd certainly watch those videos.
It's possible this could be written off as just another stupid-ass idea agencies come up with on a daily basis only to be derided here on Adrants or we could all say "fuck it," give them some money, take a three week vacation and expense the whole thing because, ya know, it's work-related. After all, we, as an industry love to give back...as long as we can expense it.