Industry Leaders Address Pending Recession

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Just why is it the more senior the executive, the more buffoonish and meaningless their commentary becomes? Advertising Age asked ten industry leaders to comment of the impending recession and what it means to the ad business. Many, from TNS Senior VP Jon Swallen to KIA Motors CMO Ian Beavis to Bear Sterns Analyst Alexia Quadrani to Pizza Hut CMO Brian Niccol offer insight and concise detail on what they see happening in the market and what their companies are doing to keep moving ahead in a downturn.

DraftFCB Chairman-CEO Howard Draft confirms our hypothesis with this bland commentary, saying, "I remain cautiously confident. At this point, we're not seeing any major client cutbacks. Our budgets remain on track." Hey, we all want to be upbeat but would it have been so difficult for Howard to leave press release speak behind and actually offer the industry something meaningful?

by Steve Hall    Jan-14-08    
Topic: Bad, Trends and Culture



Sarkozy Proposes Real Cultural Devolution

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President Nicolas Sarkozy is proposing a complete ban on public TV commercials in France. To make up for revenue lost, the country will tax the internet and mobile phones.

The IHT calls the move "virtually without precedent." The move is positioned as a means to protect old streams of income.

With that in mind, it's easy to look at the 'net and mobile as the bad guys. But to penalize growing industries for their effect on old technology?

Please be more backward.

Anywho, the Sarkozy government may draft a bill of the proposal, which has to move through both houses of Parliament. If it passes, expect big changes in France by January 1, '09 at the earliest. (Sarkozy is hoping to make it happen before Q4 of '08, but it doesn't look likely.)

Stuff's changing fast over there. Didn't the smoking ban just formalize?

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 9-08    
Topic: Bad, Policy, Television



Purdue Employees Federal Credit Union Blows Nose with Brand

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We just got a press release that starts, "PURDUE EMPLOYEES FEDERAL CREDIT UNION BLOWS AWAY THE COMPETITION." And no, it's not a reference to some landmark deal-making.

It's an announcement about its AdPack marketing strategy!

The credit union is giving away 20,000 branded tissue packs at Purdue University football games. The packs read, "Don't blow it with another credit card."

Har har.

We made a lot of "blow" references in college, but none of them actually had to do with credit cards. Well, except for one.

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 8-08    
Topic: Bad, Promotions



Target Targets Female Target

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Yup. we're ready for it. Ready for everyone to tell us we're reading way, way too much into this Target billboard that places a certain area of a woman's body highly targeted by men right in the middle of its signature target logo. But you can't tell us not a single soul at Target or its agency looked at this and didn't see a certain interpretation that could be construed as objectifying to women. There's just no way.

Would it have been that hard to place the image of the woman so her upper body was in the middle of the target rather than her...um...crotch? Seriously. Perhaps the initial concept had her playfully face down in a pile of snow emblazoned with her ass in the middle of the Target logo but someone at Target said, "We don't do doggy style at our organization. Flip her over please."

by Steve Hall    Jan- 7-08    
Topic: Bad, Outdoor



Lacoste Bullies Dental Firm Over Logo, Gets Bitchslapped with Fine

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Gotta love a logo battle. French firm Lacoste just lost one against a dental practice in UK-based Gloucestershire, which uses the image of a crocodile to promote its service.

The battle raged for four years between the goliathan clothing company and the practice, with Lacoste arguing the use of the crocodile could confuse people into thinking the dentist office is Lacoste-endorsed.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 7-08    
Topic: Bad, Brands



Social Media Takes Year End Beating

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While desperately holding out hope there's actually be something other than agency holiday cards to write about as the week draws to a close, we found two interesting pieces about the back lash of social networking. The first story comes from CoolzOr who announces he now officially hates social networks. What caused him to arrive at this state of mind. A growing social network-focused search engine called Spock.

Spock is one of those social applications that spreads virally and that is supposed to be a search engine of sorts for the billions of bits and bytes of information generated from social networks. It's supposed to make it easy to find information about people you now on the internet. Trouble is, some people think it pries too deeply into the information people place on their social network profiles. Some also feel it generates an insane amount of email notifications and it makes it nearly impossible to stop the notifications and the collection of information.

more »

by Steve Hall    Dec-20-07    
Topic: Bad, Social



Anti-Fruitcake Not As Funny As 'Orgasmum'

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Yup, what would Christmas be without some really bad Fruitcake-related promotion. This one comes from Anti-Fruitcake courtesy of Canadian singer-songwriter Jann Arden. I guess we're supposed to laugh at the fact she can't seem to say "antifruitcake.com" sort of like we were supposed to laugh at that guy who couldn't pronounce orgasm. Trouble is, we did laugh at the guy because all he could say was "orgasmum" over and over again. It was funny. Jann isn't. And does anyone in this entire world eat fruitcake any more? Can we still joke about a myth?

by Steve Hall    Dec-19-07    
Topic: Bad



Trace Adkins aka 'The Love Doctor' (WTF?) Hypes Album With Overlay Ad

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Don't you just love online ads that appear out of nowhere, blocking the content you are trying to read and distracting you with sound? Of course you do which is why you'll love this Innovate Ads overlay ad appearing on 25 radio station websites featuring Trace Adkins hyping his new album and single, Love Doctor. Could the dude droll on the country shtick any thicker? I guess you just might also have to love country to love this ad.

by Steve Hall    Dec-19-07    
Topic: Bad, Online



Promotional Hack Loses Footing, Stumbles Across Snapple Site

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[16:55] meeboguest722271: Hi there.
[16:56] meeboguest722271: I'm trying to get the word out about a great site redesign I stumbled across and as an avid reader I thought this would be a great place to start. How do you recommend I do that? The site is www.snapple.com

Why do people do this? Do they think we are dumb? Are we to believe someone actually "stumbled across" the website of a tiny little company called Snapple? By accident? Do they think we are so stupid as to not see through their lame promotional efforts? Is it so hard to simply say "we were involved in the redesign of" or "we are helping promote" Snapple's new site and we'd love to take a look at it."

more »

by Steve Hall    Dec-19-07    
Topic: Bad, Good, Online, Opinion



Publicis Macedonia, Vision Firm Show Love For Same Stock Photo

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We've had fun over the years enjoying the pitfalls of stock photography and the seeming inability of those using it to, when warranted, sign for exclusive use. So it is with great pleasure we bring you yet another stock photography goof courtesy of Publicis Macedonia...or BlueStepStudio which had a hand in developing the Publicis site...or Ultralase, the laser eye treatment company that used the same photo.

Yesterday, we were tipped to the striking resemblance (um, identical match) of a model used in an Ultralase ad found on an AOL UK page and another used as the background image of the Publicis Macedonia homepage. Yup, there she is. Looming large, peering out from behind a frame created by her fingers akin to a film director framing a shot.

more »

by Steve Hall    Dec-18-07    
Topic: Agencies, Bad, Online, Opinion, Strange










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