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Thanks For Nothing Knob Creek

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So Knob Creek, due to demand for its bourbon, is running low on supply and is at risk of running dry before its next batch is ready in November. Rather than bottle the next batch before its full nine year maturity, the comapny has turned its lack of product into a promotion. A sick joke of a promotion but a promotion none the less.

We've been sent all sorts of goodies from marketers in the mail. Sadly, most are of the throw-a-way variety. This is most certainly not the case when it comes to liquor, unless you consider pouring the product down one's throat throwing it away.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-23-09    
Topic: Direct, Opinion, Packaging, Promotions



The Boston Ad Club Reunion Reunites Generations

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Last night the Ad Club of Boston held its first ever Ad Club Reunion, and event that brought together over 500 Boston area advertising professionals from across the years. The event was held from 6P-10P at Cyclorama, a large, cavernous space perfect for the event and allowing for attendees to wander and mingle with those they haven't seen in years.

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As someone who has a history in the Boston ad community, it was great to see some faces from the past. I was pleased to run into Keith Lane, the creative director of Emerson Lane Fortuna, my first agency gig. Emerson Lane Fortuna was long ago sucked into the vortex of Arnold but Dick Emerson, Keith lane and Michael Fortuna will always be my advertising super heroes. The agency was an amazing place to work. So full of energy. Every client was awesome and that tiny little sandwich shop across Canal street rocked.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-23-09    
Topic: Industry Events



Titanic + Jaws + Hot Chic = Really Bad Nokia Commercial

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Do you love your mobile phone? The woman in this Nokia commercial does. So much so, she'll do the Titanic-style underwater save...leaving her boyfriend to return as...Jaws? Yes. This Russian (?) commercial has it all. Dancing. Flirting. Hot guy. Hot girl. Hot ass. Photoplay. Facebook! And, oops, a drowning.

by Steve Hall    Jun-23-09    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Racy



You...Are So Much Better Than You Really Are

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We could use a little Scientology right now. After all, according to the church's new commercial, "you are not your name, you're not your job, you're not the clothes you wear or the neighborhood you live in. You're not your fears, your failures or your past."

And there's more. "You are hope. You are imagination. You are the power to change, to create and to grow. You are a spirit that will never die. And no matter how beaten down, you will rise again."

Wouldn't it be nice to cast off the irrelevant, supposedly unimportant, aspects of your life - all that heavy baggage that drags you down - and just start over anew with hope, imagination and "the power to change." The only problem? You can't simply cast those things off because they are part of you and they do define you. They are your history. They are your personality. They are you.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-23-09    
Topic: Cause, Commercials, Good



Cannes Lions: Talkin' the Twitter Biz-nass

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Biz Stone's Twitter talk this afternoon was met with a full auditorium, people clamoring for places to park cameras and laptops so they could livetweet questions in real time.

Kind of a neat format. Stone addressed questions as they appeared under hashtag #hkcannes, the results of which were projected onto a screen. Two problems with this method:

1) Wifi outside the press room isn't accessible for free, meaning those that livetweeted from inside the room were either paying for use or mobiling it up. Questions were never taken directly from audience members, raising their hands, for example.

2) Questions were still for the most part selected by a Hill & Knowlton rep. I'm pretty sure the Oracle of Delphi had a less formidable filtering system.

Stone talked a bit about Twitter's birth, which I'm sure will become the stuff of online legend, so I don't really need to go into it. (Hey look, here it is.) One point of interest: his partner, Jack Dorsey, conceived the idea out of a fascination with AIM status updates.

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by Angela Natividad    Jun-22-09    
Topic: Industry Events, Opinion, Social, Trends and Culture



Warning! If You're at Cannes, Beware of the Red Speedos

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This is beyond weirdly creepy. Or is it creepily weird? Or is it just bad? Or wrong? Whatever. It's made by an ad agency that's going to Cannes for the first time so, of course, it's full of all sorts of inanity not to mention a tiny red Speedo...a version of which arrived at our doorstep this morning, no less! And no, we are not going to wear it lest we want to be a poster boy for Donny Deutsch.

Yes, Red Tettemer is going to Cannes and they've brought their red Speedos along. Not to mention a lot of other weird shit. Have fun, guys.

by Steve Hall    Jun-22-09    
Topic: Agencies, Industry Events, Strange



Cannes Lions: A Handful of Real Winnars in PR, Promotion and Direct.

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This year was the first year Cannes recognized PR's role in getting a brand message across, so PR people just about creamed themselves getting here. Even Hill & Knowlton couldn't help but say something smug about it before passing the mic to Biz Stone this afternoon.

Yeah, you guys are in the door, woo woo.

We're not gonna sit out and type the full list of trophy bait; that's what the Cannes Lions awards subsite is for. But here are the Grand Prix winners in all three categories, and a few nice PR Lion winners, too.

For PROMO: "Yubari" for Yubari Resort (Japan), by Beacon Communications/Tokyo.

I didn't really understand the beauty of this campaign until it was explained to me in full. Apparently Yubari used to be a miner town, and when the mines closed and all the miners left, the city was hurting for cash.

Beacon was enlisted to address the problem. In its research of Yubari it discovered something compelling: that its inhabitants do not divorce. Ever. For whatever reason, probably having to do with that it was damn-near deserted, marriages there maintain a 100% success rate.

Silver bullet in tow, Beacon immediately positioned Yubari as the place to insure your happily ever after. The campaign was ridiculously successful in the first year, with newlyweds angling from far and wide to visit. And that's how a small minor town became Japan's City of Love.

For DIRECT and PR: "Best Job in the World" for Tourism Queensland (Australia), by Cumminsnitro. Well-deserved -- this was truly ambitious work from an agency that was hardly on the radar before this year.

So there you have it. Now see below for some nice PR Lion notables.

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by Angela Natividad    Jun-22-09    
Topic: Agencies, Campaigns, Industry Events



Cannes Lions: Ronald McDonald Cameo Ignites Deep-Seated Clown Rage

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Clowns give me mixed feelings. Having seen Killer Klowns from Outer Space at too young an age, they terrify me. And having watched a clown dejectedly make unwanted balloon animals at a party where all the kids were too old, they also make me inexpressibly sad.

Anyway, Ronald McDonald was outside the Palais today, wearing jetpacks of all things. He was doing this big dog and pony show for whoever reared a camera in his direction. Seeing him made me frightened, and when I'm scared I get mad, hence the venomous video.

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by Angela Natividad    Jun-22-09    
Topic: Brands, Industry Events



Spastic Jump Cuts Ruin Wells Fargo Commercials

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Maybe it's our short attention span. Maybe it's our overly simplistic mind. Maybe it's our aversion to creative full of distracting hack job jumble cuts and irrelevant metaphors. Whatever it is, we had to watch these two DDB West-created, Epoch Films-produced Wells Fargo commercials a few times before we realized they touted the organization's online banking services and automatic savings programs.

Come one Epoch! You guys did that awesome JCPenney commercial. Granted you submitted it illegally to Cannes last year but still. Who got their hands on this Wells Fargo work? Your interns?

by Steve Hall    Jun-22-09    
Topic: Bad, Campaigns, Commercials, Creative Commentary



Phone 4U Think s You Are A Loser

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Not exactly the way to compliment your potential customers but fun none the less is Are You Popular, a website for UK-based Phones 4U which analyzes photographs to determine what makes a person such a loser.

Basically, it's a lame send-t-a-friend that, well, doesn't really accomplish anything at all other than letting you insult your friends and get insulted yourself.

by Steve Hall    Jun-22-09    
Topic: Bad, Online



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