AllState, best known for its mild-mannered commercials and provocative slogan, "Are you in good hands?" conducts an out-of-character but well-orchestrated PR stunt with the help of Leo Burnett.
In the subsequent ad a man on a mission steals a vehicle and drives it surreally off the top of a Marina City parking garage in Chicago. And just when you're like "OMGWTFBBQ," that soothing meme of a tone takes over: "AllState. Are you in good hands?"
Nervous laughter all around.
This print ad, where a Grand Am teeters precariously over the edge of that same parking structure, follows up on the idea.
AllState, typically favouring the soberest of marketing stances, surprised us with this one. It's a little like God making a joke at our expense. We're sure they got some good buzz out of the deal and maybe even an account or two since people accidentally drive off narrow parking structures all the time.
We'd never be able to turn down anything involving Nick Cannon, and 5W clearly hopes you feel the same way because they've just crowned the young Wild'n Out star with dinner host status for Sundance Escape '07. Other celebs you'd die before missing, we're sure, include poker prodigy Doyle Brunson, who'll also be signing autographs for a book he wrote.
5W PR CEO Ronn Torossian gushes, "We are thrilled to have a presence this year, and to have our clients Evian, Anheuser-Busch and Doyle Brunson, joining." Yeah, presence for these sorts of things is always a plus. The fun goes down in Park City, UT from January 18th- 22nd.
If for some incomprehensible reason you can't make it in the flesh, mouth Nick Cannon's raps in your living room while watching the whole thing live on Stickam. We wouldn't miss it even if we had terminal cancer, so be there or risk making the mistake of your life.
Agency Brown of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada throws together a little Spinal Tap tribute to demonstrate why it's just cooler to be "one louder" than the other cats out there. These are the same guys who did that "we're always on" lightswitch thing that we made fun of last year.
We'll cut them some slack this time because we like that weird skeleton shirt that Nigel Tufnel has on. It's funny the things that endear a campaign to you. We still, however, think Brown can be corny as all hell with this somewhat feeble "toot our own horns" shtick.
Doodles are coming back in a big way as suddenly everybody's under the impression they say a lot about you.
To perpetuate this strange idea Lunar BBDO creates a doodle campaign for UK-based Samaritans, which according to the website provides "emotional support for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those which may lead to suicide."
Creative director Daryl Corps tells AdCritic, "If you stand close to the poster you'll see the detailed doodles -- but stand back and you'll see that these doodles make up the image of someone who should contact the Samaritans."
Suddenly we want desperately to hide the desk calendar we've been idly doodling on for the last year. Our little pinwheels, inky slashes and bug-eyed monsters make us feel very naked in the face of all this concerned scrutiny. Didn't Patrick Bateman of American Psycho do a lot of doodling too? Look at that. One day you're doodling; the next day you're trying to push a live cat into an ATM machine.
For Smirnoff's Break the Ice campaign, Denmark-based Leo Burnett releases an online-only video of some douchey wallflower doing hackey sack-type tricks with a bottle of Smirnoff. We like the ending and don't want to spoil it for you. Let's just say there's a reason hackey sacks are soft and squishy.
Apparently Greenpeace attended Macworld for no better reason than to throw a wrench in Apple's game, projecting green backgrounds across large company logos as well as shots of Asian scrap yards.
Better still, they have a video of Steve Jobs crooning the sweet nothings they really want to hear in '07. There's even a website dedicated to getting Apple greener.
Hm. Greenpeace is a lot like that scary ex who insists you were wrong but keeps lurking around long after you've moved on in order to spread the word. We feel greener just thinking about it.
An ad for the Mitsubishi Endeavor, in which a snowman melts when the hulking SUV drives by, was placed beside an article about whether climate change threatens polar bear habits on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's website. This kind of awkward placement always makes us feel a little squeamish.
Larry Futers, Mitsubishi's national marketing director in Canada, defends the Mindblossom-produced ad: "It was the right campaign for us at the time," he explains. Though why a marketer has to practically apologize about the crappy placement of his ad on an affiliate's page is beyond us. Shouldn't CBC be firing an intern right now?
More about the dramatic developments on Radar Online.
C'est So Paris is a marketing effort aimed at making Parisian quirks more charming to the outside world, which Paris is notorious for shunning.
The site gets an A for effort but is occasionally a painful experience. Humour ads like this one feel a bit contrived. But there's a whole section on Parisian attitudes that we think is helpful if you happen to need lessons on how to pout, snarl at tourists and almost effortlessly tell someone to shut up in the most condescending way imaginable. Prizes can be won by users who send in their best imitation of a Parisian.
We're not sure why the long fog of Parisian obsolescence lifted but we suspect it might be because the country's air is a bit clearer now that the no-smoking ban has been passed. Though we suspect if the campaign does succeed Parisians still won't be good sports about the deluge of tourists monkeying their mannerisms and giving them infanticizing head-pats for that adorable self-entitled air.
Russian Orthodox Christmas happened last Sunday. To help Orthodox Russians celebrate, True ran a holiday campaign inviting men to meet Holly, who's apparently three different women. Copyranter notes it's stupid to 1) use non-member nameless bimbettes in a dating site ad, 2) give said fake bimbettes names, and 3) use the same name for multiple bimbettes in an ad series.
We got stuck on point 1 and can't seem to move forward. You mean True's ad models aren't actually members?! Think of all this time we've been sitting around planning what exactly we'd say to Holly when we finally meet her this season. (Considering there are at least three, we just figured it would help improve our odds.)
Dove hops on the consumer-generated-ad-contest hype (at this point we're trying really hard not to use the word "begging" for the 200,000th time), assisting would-be advertisers with a tutorial on Dove Cream Oil. The winning ad will air during the Academy Awards in February.
Thanks Shawn for the news. Here's hoping another ad person doesn't win this one because the way everybody's beating this "campaign strategy" to death, we're obviously trying really hard to engage consumers here. Like, really, really hard.