McDonald's Brings Holiday Cheer With Coffee-Ring Snowflakes


As the holiday season draws near, marketers are rolling out holiday offerings and McDonald's is no exception. With its McCafe Make Your Own Coffee-Ring Snowflake site, visitors can get all festive and create their own floating masterpiece. All in the name of promoting McDonald's various holiday lattes and cappuccinos.

Get started early this season and make a flake.

by Steve Hall    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Brands, Online

Because PB&J Should Be More Democratic than It Is.


Here's a pretty idea. To drive donations to the Greater Chicago Food Depository, Leo Burnett/Chicago and Starcom remind shoppers that "food shouldn't be a luxury."

To illustrate the point, ordinary items -- soup, broccoli, PB&J sandwiches -- are positioned as luxury goods, languishing in the manicured hands of luxe porcelain models.

The bottom portion of each piece invites viewers to donate what they can to the Depository. "Text MEALS to 90999 to give $5," it adds -- simple enough to do on impulse.

If you're in the Chi, expect to see these on CTA buses and rail cars from now to December 31st.

by Angela Natividad    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Campaigns, Cause, Good, Outdoor, Poster

Sexting, Nuggnuts, Blogger Bailouts, In-Game Ads on Saints Row


- Massive inked a multi-year, in-game ad deal with THQ. So far, the only game that will for certain feature dynamic advertising is Saints Row 2.

- Queen Rania of Jordan has won the first-ever YouTube Visionary award for her daily videocast. I kind of love her.

- Six Apart has launched something called the TypePad Journalist Bailout Program. Under it, about 30 ex-bloggers or journalists will receive a free TypePad Pro account, tech support, representation on and auto-enrollment into Six Apart's ad network. 300 applications were received in less than two weeks.

- "Diddy is so Sarah Palin."

- Close-up on crotchvertising.

- New buzz word: sexting! Almost as fun as nuggnut. (Click on "Nuggnut pledge" for awesome brainwashing action.)

Great Creative Needs Attentive Cultivation


This tongue in cheek video from Creative Juices for The South West Creative Grower's Association has been out for quite a while but its content is worth highlighting. The primary message is one of creativity. "You can't go wrong with a good idea" says the chief vintner of Creative Industries, a 300 year old, family-owned cultivator of vineyard-grown creative people.

It's quirky and it's funny but it carries an important message. Despite the world crumbling around us, a really good, well-cultivated good idea can weather even the worst of economic downturns. So let your creative juices flow and make sure your clients don't harvest them before they are ready.

by Steve Hall    Nov-25-08    

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No, Even Lexus Can't Top the Big-Wheel Memory


Every holiday season Lexus busts out with a campaign featuring some pearl-coloured vehicle with a bow on top. Far from perfect -- whose pursuit Lexus claims to champion -- it's mediocre and irritating. Like weathered nativity scenes.

Last night we thought we saw something different. The comfortingly low-fi "Big Wheel" bears the consistency of old home videos or a classic holiday movie. In it, a kid with a new plastic trike faces us and cries, "Stop! What are you doing? You can't top the big-wheel memory!"

We ruminate on our own '80s-era big wheels as he reprises us on its merits: the freedom! The wind in your hair!

Then there's an awkward cut. The kid is a man, and now he's facing a Lexus -- with a bow. And we're like, "Fuck, this could have been so much better."

more »

by Angela Natividad    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television

Gay Marriage Should Not Be Such A Big Deal


Is it really that difficult to let two people who love each other live their lives they way they choose? After all, what business do people have sticking their noses into the business of others? Is it really so hard to just live one's life and allow others to live theirs without judgment? If two people love each other, who are we to judge?

While a marriage between two male priest performed by a female priest may not yet be as innocuous as the next, Swedish fashion designer Bjorn Borg asks us to envision such a world.

Must we be so judgmental of others? Can't we just appreciate the happiness and love shared between two people? Is it really that difficult?

by Steve Hall    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Best, Brands, Commercials

Detroit Pistons Reinforce Sporting Mentality Stereotypes


In what has to be the worst sports team promotion ever created in the history of sports team promotions, the Detroit Pistons are out with a video promoting Guy's Night Out. Complete with horrible acting, cheesy music, ridiculous copy and infomercial-style visuals and supers, does nothing but cement outdated stereotypes of sports-crazy idiots and their bitchy, whining wives.

One can only hope the goal of the work was to create something so horrific, it would achieve "so-bad-it's-good" status. If that's the case, though well-intentioned, the creators have failed miserably.

by Steve Hall    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Video, Worst

Sean John Fragrance (Campaign) Induces Puking


This new Sean Combs ad appeared in the recent issue of GQ. When the page was tuned and the ad appeared, the immediate reaction was to rewrite the headline to read, "I Am Played Out" or "I Am So Full of Myself I Want to Make You All Puke." Yea, it's a new campaign for Diddy/Puff Daddy/P. Diddy/Sean John, Combs/Whatever's new fragrance.

After seeing the billboard for the campaign in New York, AgencySpy wrote, "Oh my god. Barf and barfier." Indeed. After the pages of GQ turned to reveal this ad, a little puke did, indeed, find its way up to the mouth.

Angela saw the same ad in December's Vanity Fair. Her reaction here. (Note how it also involves a barflike physical reflex.)

by Steve Hall    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Celebrity, Worst

Kristen Johnston Nude. For PETA.


Here's a confusing metaphor. B-list star Kristen Johnston poses as Lady Godiva -- who rode a horse naked through Coventry to win a break on her husband's taxes -- in order to raise awareness about the hazards of horse-drawn carriages.

"Don't get taken for a ride," the ad reads. "Horse-drawn carriages are cruel."

I guess. Good fodder for the portfolio though -- a Maraschino cherry topping fine oeuvres like Austin Powers: the Spy Who Shagged Me and Strangers with Candy.

by Angela Natividad    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Campaigns, Cause, Celebrity, Magazine, Poster, Strange

GM/Ford Talk Social Media, B-52's Chime, Cunning Turns Ten


- Two key players shaping Detroit's social media strategy, Ford's Scott Monty and GM's Christopher Barger, appeared on The BeanCast, this week to talk about their social media efforts for the auto industry, the proposed bailout and that private jet fiasco.

- The B-52s have lent their sound to NBC network's ongoing CHIME IN campaign recording its own version of NBC's chimes, which will air in promo form during the network's primetime lineup.

- Marketing agency Cunning is ten years old. Help them blow out the candles on their virtual birthday cake.

- On Tuesday, December 16 at the ADC Gallery on 106 West 29th Street, The Art Directors Club will host its holiday party where the Art Directors Annula 87 and the ADC Young Guns 6 Annual will be made available for purchase.

by Steve Hall    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Agencies, Industry Events, Podcast, Social, Television

Levi's Brings Us Back to the First Time


Levi's is Ad Land's Lolita: perennially young, sexually voracious.

"First Time," a spot for the "Live Unbuttoned" campaign, holds that reputation up nicely. In it, two beautiful adolescents stand face to face in the open air, unbuttoning their jeans.

"You've never done this before, right?" she asks.

"No," he murmurs.

"It's my thirty-fourth time." O_O

They volley around a few more cliches: I'm scared. Don't you trust me? Then, after the long unbutton -- what's Levi's got against zippers? -- nuddified boy and girl take hands and leap off a high dock: as good a metaphor for losing your innocence as any.

Pretty work by the would-be John Hugheses at BBH/London. Good media placement, too: I saw it last night during Heroes, which is positively bursting with hormonal tension.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television

Victoria's Secret Collegiate Collection: Hijacked for the Lulz


Victoria's Secret Pink Collegiate represents everything wrong (but sellable!) about college: bright-eyed, gum-popping sorority girls that coordinate dog leashes to their shoes, non-merit-based exclusivity (unless heart-shaped hickeys count), high-pitched voices, strawberry blondes, fruity body spray, polka dots, and pink.

Victoria's Secret recently gave unrepresented schools the chance to join the Pink Collegiate Collection -- a pupil-dilating clothing line sporting Pinkified uni logos and mascots. Probably for the above-mentioned reasons, a passel of hackers decided to have their way with the system.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Nov-25-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online, Trends and Culture

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