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Xperience Uses Trivia to Jazz up Ford/Microsoft SYNC Tour

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Red-blooded brand Ford partnered with Microsoft to produce SYNC, a 28-city nationwide tour that kicked off at the 2008 Super Bowl. The power pair tapped Xperience Communications -- which either ran out of Xtra Es or pulled its name out of a retro hat -- to help fuel tech enthusiasm.

The tour sought to educate attendees about Microsoft technology in Ford vehicles: hands-free calling, audible text messages, voice-activated music, instant voice recognition (one would hope), automatic phonebook transfer, and multilingual capabilities, among other exciting distractions.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Events, Guerilla, Outdoor, Promotions



Crop Circles Promote Whole Wheat Pizza

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To advertise its 100 percent whole-wheat pizzas, Papa John's flattened about six acres' worth. The delectable crop circle at left was created in a wheat field in Commerce City, so in- and outbound Denver International passengers can get a nice big eyeful of pie in the sky.

For those that may find this particularly inspirational, a company called Circlemakers specializes in producing crop circles for brand names. Clients have included Microsoft, Nike, Greenpeace (nothin' like a single serving of in-flight guilt), Hello Kitty, BP, and The History Channel. Oh yeah, and there's also Ad-Air, a gigantorama billboard maker that's infinitely less creative than a crop circle, but it could probably cover up a bad wheat-shaving nick with ease.

Many thanks to Keith at HR Bartender for the Papa John's tip.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Brands, Guerilla, Inflight, Outdoor



Nokia: Yes! Follow the Strangers with the Soothing Shirts

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This Nokia campaign, where a Personal Navigator leads the lost to their final destinations, probably wasn't meant to encourage emo-stricken weirdos to trust friendly strangers. But from here on out, if I ever want to kidnap a giant chicken in dire straits, I'll probably pull on a "Personal Navigator" shirt and try taking it by the hand.

Also see bickering pirates locate misplaced X, a lost alien get alienated, two goths find love, and -- my favourite -- Pacman outrunning the ghosts, which also have a Personal Navigator.

The campaign was seeded across the 'net by Unruly Media. Its happy task is to endear the Nokia N78 -- featuring maps! -- to the navigationally-challenged. The music gave each piece a Chaplinesque feel, which made things seem that much sadder when it all went horribly wrong.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Good, Online, Trends and Culture, Video



Come On, Big Boy. Pick Up that Magnum and Blow Holes Through Republik.

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Bowing to its slogan, "Change or die," North Carolina-based agency The Republik is inviting users to shoot the living crap out of its old website.

Choose from a 44 Magnum, a shotgun or a sniper rifle. The Magnum is by far the most satisfying, and after about 10 hits, a fancy new Republik site appears. It's got a lot going on. Existing projects float across a galaxy of polka-dots, and the top nav is vaguely reminiscent of Modernista, except without all the distractions.

When clicked, a floating dot labeled "don't click here" brings users to an alarmingly red self-promo page. Not a bad gimmick, but gimmicky all the same.

If I had the cash and a cause, would I tap The Republik by merit of its site? At the very least, I'd want to hear them out. I could be wrong, but I think they get it.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Agencies, Games, Good, Online



Jawbone Ad Highlights 'Beauty' of Transgender Plastic Surgery

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The freakish looking transgenger queen Amanda Lepore -- who had her first cosmetic surgery at age 15, decided to have a sex change in high school, led a failed suburban housewife life and then hit New York for fame and fortune -- appeared in a Jawbone ad in this week's New Yorker.

Having already fronted M.A.C., Armani, MTV, and Swatch campaigns, Lepore appears in one half of a spread. The other half features what appears to be a plastic surgeon with a somewhat dumbfounded look on his face, possibly in reaction to the overly "worked-on" Lepore.

One always aims to be a bit eye-catching in advertising. This ad certainly accomplishes that.

by Steve Hall    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Celebrity, Good, Magazine



AMC Asks Twitter to Remove 'Mad Men' Accounts

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AMC didn't take too kindly to the onslaught of Mad Men characters appearing on Twitter and sent a Digital Millenium Copyright Act take down notice asking Twitter to remove @Don_Draper and @PeggyOlsen. The accounts are currently suspended. There are other accounts on Twitter for the Mad Men characters Roger Sterling, Pete Campbell, Joan Holloway, Paul Kinsey, Sal Romano, Bertram Cooper and Bobbie Barrett. Many are still active though @joan_halloway has recently been suspended as well.

AMC was not behind the appearance of the characters on Twitter but its legal maneuverings may go down as the single worst use (misuse?) of social media. One of the characters, @paul_kinsey, was created by Mario Parise. When he created the account, he immediately contacted AMC to tell them what he was doing and if they had any problem, he'd immediately cancel the account. AMC never contacted him; it chose instead to take the legal route.

more »

by Steve Hall    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Opinion, Social, Worst



Can't Find a Job? ANPE's Not Convinced

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ANPE, the National Agency for Employment in France, tapped TBWA\Corporate to preach its gospel to disheartened work force rejects. What TBWA came up with is respectful of ANPE's traditionally risk-averse style, but also playful in a Where's Waldo? sorta way.

The prints are detail-rich and do a nice job of connecting the online world, which is big but can seem solitary, with the bustling offline world. The ad at left features a city intersection flooded with people. It reads, "700,000 CVs online to find your next business partner."

See variants:

o 300,000 offers online everyday to locate your future office.
o 400,000 people log on anpe.fr everyday to save time.

What fun. It would be great to see these, larger than life, in a Metro somewhere.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Good, Magazine, Outdoor, Poster



CK Pushes Sweatsuits, IE8 Eats Cookies, Google Dinners Seized, Cho Gets Show

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- Calvin Klein hopes a new e-commerce subsite will help it unload some "white label" (that is, very expensive but still mostly nylon and cotton) sports gear.

- For marketers hoping to retain a healthy base of Internet Explorer users, IE8 might turn cookies into a sometimes friend. Its InPrivate feature blocks them and automatically clears users' browsing histories once they end a session. Some writers are fondly calling it "porn mode."

- Free din-din at Google: officially off-limits, unless you happen to be an engineer. Not to worry, less twitchy Googlers won't starve. Lunch and breakfast remain a perk.

- PhotoShelter is selling some of its photographers' work as limited-edition art. Check out the existential phone booth.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Celebrity, Online, Political, Strange, Trends and Culture



Jack Daniels Toasts Conventions With Wild Postings

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Arnold, with help from Yeehaw Industries letterpress, has launched a campaign for Jack Daniels consisting of wild postings near the Republican and Democratic national conventions as well as newspaper and a Discobama promotion at Denver's Lip Gloss. The creative, with headlines such as "Sometimes common ground is small enough to fit on a cocktail napkin," Drinking champagne is a perfectly acceptable way to celebrate being elected president...of France" and "Jack supports all parties," is presented with a 50's and 60's looking political campaign style.

by Steve Hall    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Guerilla, Outdoor, Poster



Photogasmic Diesel Commercial Makes Fantasy A Reality

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It's well know Diesel does some weird/interesting/racy/bad advertising. They did that global warming thing. They did that two-hotties-in-a-room-S&M thing. They did that Aarif Smaks dance instructor thing. Now Diesel offers up some photogasmic "fuel for life" for, well, its Fuel for Life line of fragrance for women.

more »

by Steve Hall    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Commercials, Creative Commentary, Good, Racy



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