This has Wexley School for Girls written all over it. Oh wait, of course it does...because they did it. They created it for MSN Search. Using the kooky infomercial format and several of its stars, Anthony Sullivan, Matthew Lesko and Tony Little, Infomercial Madness pumps up MSN Search informercial-style and offers visitors the chance to make their own promotional informercial. It's all a bit cheesy but, then again, we're talking about the cheesiest form of advertising here.
In Altoids Factory, which looks suspiciously like a Chinese sweatshop, assist two little men in the hefty task of turning plain Altoids into sour ones by creating clusters beside the proper packaging. The game is mystifying as we couldn't begin to guess what some of the packages are supposed to represent and thus wasted a lot of time putting 'toids beside the wrong containers resulting in no transformation of any kind.
Keep your dirty dealings to yourself, PR guy Al Toid. We will not take part in your shady time-wasting practices. Oh, and your music sucks too. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
- Kid runs away from home, forgets passport, TV show promoted.
- Alex Bogusky gets his elf on over at Office Max.
- If you're going to spoof a Mac/PC ad for your holiday card, the least you could do what make it good. TM Advertising didn't.
- Joe Jaffe examines the long, slow death of the portal.
At this week's Search Engine Strategies Conference in Chicago, Jim Hedger from Webmaster Radio detailedhow Google is serving AdWords ads to terrorist sites within the company's social networking site Orkut. Some think it's malicious. Others think Google can't possibly monitor every single site in the world for content. Hedger also discussed how money earned from click fraud on these sites is "supporting" terrorism. You decide. Is there anything Google can or should do to minimize this?
In another attempt to keep Canada busy, Ontario-based Fuel Industries creates the following advergame for Johnson and Johnson.
Mr. Reach and the Mouth of Mystery has our hero Mr. Reach pursuing danger of all sizes and shapes to save his buddy Jerry the narrator. Both are dormant TV personalities from the 80's and 90's. The site calls this "a story filled with secrets, romance, and adventure that dates back almost three hundred years... a story that could actually hold the key to the very answers you are seeking."
Our only question is whether all this romance and adventure and shit takes place inside our mouths. Because that's normally where toothbrushes fight injustices of all kinds - in our mouths. And if the answer is yes, this takes place in our mouths, oh man. That's a porno spoof just waiting to happen. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
With the appropriate acronym, S.H.I.T, Via's Santa Hunters Investigative Team is a collection of videos that documents the agency's search for the elusive Santa Clause. It's the agency's version of its holiday card for clients and friends. Our favorite is the downloadable "We are the S.H.I.T" buddy icon.
Best Buy has done a fantastic job making it easier for people to choose the right gift this holiday season. Called the Wow Factor Finder, this website offers gift ideas based on a short survey about the person the purchased gift will be for. There is also a large collection of videos that have been placed on YouTube that detail particular products and for whom they might make a good gift. It's well thought out. It's not fancy. It's just straight forward advice many people need at this time of year.
After we realized we weren't Taye Diggs in an episode of Day Break, we realized Agency.com just can't seem to catch a break these days. Just a week or so after Lynx releases Lynxblow, a site that lets people blow the clothes off a model by blowing into their microphone, Agency.com client BT releases The Hi Def Chamber, a site that lets people blow stuff up by blowing into their microphone. Homage paid or coincidence? You decide.
Duvall Guillaume launched a bizarre campaign for animal rights group GAIA in Belgium. It's called Pigs in Pain. From the PR guy's letter:
"In Belgium, five million piglets are castrated without anaesthetic every year. The cries of agony of these piglets are unbearable. Yet our government still pretends not to hear it. In spite of promises they made 3 years ago to ban the cruelty."
With that in mind they created a pop group called Pigs in Pain. Their single, which was actually released on the radio, consisted of pigs screaming in inexplicable agony. It made our ears bleed. Clever way to get animal angst out to the public. So read the requisite blog, watch the music video and share in the plight of Belgian pigs. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
In an intersection between the surreal story-telling band The Decemberists and Napoleon Dynamite, Microsoft uses Clearification to promote Vista. This is a subtly witty bio-site about a guy suffering from HANDTOSS, or Hyper-Achiever with No Direction and Tendency to Overcomplicate Situations Syndrome.
The campaign was created by McCann and Mekanism. The HANDTOSS victim is comedian Demetri Martin. We never thought we'd say this about any one of Microsoft's myriad attempts to de-stodge, but we dig it. Then again we'd love anybody who covertly reveals his favourite subject in school "involved karate and ... crying."
We could listen to this guy spout neuroses in his mellow little voice for hours. - Contributed by Angela Natividad