Perhaps it was all fire and brimstone or perhaps it really was the truth but Commercial Alert Executive Director Gary Ruskin Minced no words when he told ad execs at an Association of National Advertisers luncheon yesterday that "most Americans really despise what you do." He also told the audience what we all have known for a long time; we are not loved by people. Poll after poll ranks us right up there with car dealers in terms of trust. Citing yet another study, Ruskin said, "your industry is not yet as unpopular as the tobacco industry." It's not inconceivable that, with the increasing amount of ad-avoidance control people gain, that will happen quite soon.
He had no kind words to say about product placement or buzz marketing either and that's not surprising. The walls between advertising and content have long since disappeared because of media fragmentation which gave people more choice to avoid advertising and because of ad-avoidance platforms like pay-per-view, DVRs, bit torrent, file-sharing and the iPod. It's no surprise that marketers are grasping at straws to regain the control it once had over consumer eyeballs when a three network buy would reach every person in the country.
Pepsi's Mountain Dew and Plum TV are getting together during the Winter X Games in Aspen January 26-30 to promote Mountain Dew MDX. During the games, Mountain Dew will sponsor nightly shuttles outfitted with cameras to capture nocturnal reveler's escapades to be broadcast on Plum TV in Aspen, Vail and on the Mountain Dew MDX Be Noctural site. Also, a party hosted by Mountain Dew MDX will be held at the Sun Deck on Ajax Mountain where antics will also be captured for Plum TV broadcast.
Stay tuned for videos from the event. We'll post them as we receive them.
Extending the tease we pointed out a couple weeks ago, Agent Provocateur has released yet a bit more of its soon to be eight minute long film, Tied Up At The Office, by Mike Figgis starring models Lara Jones and Amanda Grace. The film goes well beyond the previous Kylie Minogue lingerie video she did a couple years ago for the retailer and focuses heavily on self-gratification, lesbianism and S&M. This clip is 50 seconds long with the full film due to be released February 9. While this clip has no nudity, the subject matter and the particularly tantalizing female vocal emanations suggests it be viewed in the comfort of your own private hideaway.
If this video pans out the way it teases us to belive it will, we've got to hand it to Agenct Provocateur for being this daring and for brining some serious cinematic power to this this we call advertising. No doubt, this will rank up there as one of the most viewed virals of the year.
Those radical exaggerators over at PETA are up to their old sensationalism again with the launch of Milk Gone Wild, a spoof on the Girls Gone Wild series which uses titillation and human udders to call attention to the apparent health hazards of drinking milk. While we have a decidedly different viewpoint than PETA does on the whole milk thing owing to our attachment, through marriage, to the realities versus fiction of dairy farming, PETA has, again, done what it does best; use sex and controversy to bring attention to its causes. With all the anti-everything campaigns PETA produces, it would be intriguing to watch a video of PETA employees deciding what to choose from the organization's cafeteria menu: lettuce, lettuce or lettuce topped with lettuce.
Heineken, the official beer sponsor of The 48th Annual GRAMMY Awards, is launching their second nationwide advertising campaign on Internet jukeboxes throughout the United States on Ecast's interactive jukebox network. The campaign will run on 4400 broadband-enabled jukeboxes in bars and taverns throughout the country. The campaign features a Heineken micro-site, downloadable collections of music from Grammy-winning artists, and a Heineken-branded trivia game.
Using the home shopping network approach to selling an AK-47, the Amnesty International Protect the Human cause has released a humorous but convincing video that claims the world's arms trade is out of control and calls for governments to sign the Arms Trade Agreement. The video was created by Mother London.
Now here's a way to market a boring product like dog treats. Rather than try to espouse the tastiness of the treat - which is clearly a lie - just couple the product with dog treat launch gun called Snackshotz as you laugh your way to the bank while your dog treat competitors utter a collective, "Huh?", as your sales skyrockets past theirs.
Hoping to help men who seek Russian brides for their apparent adherence to the "promise to obey" wedding vow, English/Russian translation company Russian Gal Translations has launched SmokingHotKova, a site which features obedient Russian dolls called matrioshkas. The work, cheeky as it may be, was created by that Hawaiian/Irish tag team, Hawiirish.
Today, Commercial Alert launched StopDrugAds.org, a site devoted to ending direct-to-consumer prescription drug advertising in the United States. Commercial Alert says the purpose of the website is to educate the public about the dangers of prescription drug advertising, and to recruit Americans to voice their opposition to the ads.
BlueLithium, TribalFusion, Casale, Tacoda, Claria. To those outside the ad industry, and to some within, these names would lead one to believe we're talking about some new form of drug therapy intervention. In actuality, they are the names of ad serving companies, those wonderful, if difficult to define, operations that help deliver marketers online ads to websites that make sense for the advertiser. With all the buzz words these companies insist upon using, it's a wonder any of us in the industry have a clue as to the real modus operandi of these companies.
With the help of iMediaCommection's Jim Meskauskus, you need not feel like a clueless buffoon any longer. Jim has queried 14 of these companies with a series of questions geared towards helping us all understand just what these companies do, how big they are, who they target, why they're different from their competitors and what kind of ads they serve. So dig in and become an expert on ad serving. Or, at least become an expert at knowing what these companies want you to know versus what you might really want to know.