Steve Rubel reports Google is gearing up readying a fierce fight for classified ad dollars as evidenced by a job posting the company placed on HotJobs seeking a Classified Vertical Markets Director who would be given responsibility to "develop and execute on a strategy for driving ad sales with all advertisers in the Classifieds category on a national/international level, working with all sales channels and resources (DSO, ISO, Online)." With the launch of Google Base, a tool that allows anyone to add anything to Google's database, the move into the classified space is a no brainer. While it might take a while to ween people from the likes of Craig's List and newspaper classified placements, there's no doubt, a serious dent will be made by Google in this space. Rubel also reports Microsoft isn't going to let Google have all the fun.
If you've done time in advertising, you know advertising award shows are nothing more than ego boosters for our fragile personas and a chance for us to get a group hug from our fellow industry mates. The Phoeniz Addys aren't trying to hide this truth with their call for entries promotion called Ego Stroke 5,000, a device that sends ego boosting thoughts into the brain. Of course it's just a cheesecake pan with a bunch or wires attached but it does the job. The promotion was created by Riester~Robb.
Working for The Weinstein Company - the Hollywood production company formed by Bob and Harvey Weinstein, founders of Miramax and Dimension Films - online marketing firm Deep Focus and creative services firm Big Spaceship have created YouAreNowInfected, a promotional site for the upcoming Dimension Films feature Pulse, starring Veronica Mars' Kristen Bell. The site resembles an online FTP directory devoid of fancy Flash graphics usually associated with online promotions for Hollywood films and contains simple links to images, character video diaries and, of course, the film's trailer.
While the success of the film which takes yet another stab at "Internet as host for really bad things" could go either way and won't be known until March 3 when the film opens, we can say, this promotional site is refreshingly welcome. Without all the Flash n' Crap, the site, which is blissfully easy to navigate, we're told, will build over the four month run up to the opening with more video diaries and film related trivia, clues, and imagery.
A Netherlands agency, Achtung, has created an online game called PakMan, which mimics the old video game PacMan and is a promotional element for Netherlands suit maker SuitSupply. In the game, Pakman, the player, is running in his underwear. His mission is to save Angel from Fatman. When eating the magic pills, Pakman gets superpower from his suit and is able to kick Fatman's ass. Rescuing Angel in each level gives the player a voucher for a tie, a shirt or a complete free suit. It's fun and it gets bodies into the store.
Lynx Deodorant (Axe in the States), with the launch of LynxJet, is perpetuating its use of sexy women to raise the body temperature, among other things, of young men foolish enough to think deodorant has something to do with their ability to increase their dipstick quotient. It's JetBlue for the deodorant deprived. It's Hooters Airlines but without all the cleavage induced sweating. But mostly, it's diversionary advertising that is just fun enough to create a little fantasy in a guy's mind when he's strolling down the deodorant aisle in the drug store. A fantasy, perhaps, powerful enough to make him actually buy the stuff.
But, as is always the case, some people didn't quite get the joke.
To help move DVDs of its series and to make it easier to select a Holiday gift for that special someone, HBO has launched The Good Gift Seeker. Created by Atmosphere BBDO, the microsite asks people to select who they need a gift for, the personality type of that person and that person's hobby. Once that info is provided, the Good GiftSeeker selects the HBO series DVD that best matches the intended recipient. It's fairly straight forward. After all, there's only so many ways to move DVDs.
OK, so maybe we don't like the new Sprint Together With Nextel thing but we absolutely love the company's Entertainment Anytime cab ride experience that promotes Sprint's Powervision network which consists of video, news, music, games TV and other goodies for your cell phone. This little piece of amusement resembles that of HBO's Taxi Cab Confessions except there's no confessing and it's all G rated. Basically, the keys on your keyboard become devices through which to add a bit of entertainment to a usually boring cab ride all while making an analogy to Sprint's far better choice of entertainment on its cell phone network. Perhaps we'll forgive them for all that yellow and inane combo-branding strategy.
Renault in France has launched a website that does nothing but feature the company's ad campaigns, old and new. Called, On reclame la pub!, which is hard to translate wordplay hard the loosely means both "we want ads" and an old school version of "We advertise ads," the site appeases what the car maker dubs "brand fans and advertising addicts." Well, that would be us but not sure about the rest of the world. The site also has a newsletter that announces new campaign launches, screensavers and wallpapers. So if you love Renault, this site is for you. You just better be able to read French.
American Copywriter perfectly sums up our feeling and, no doubt, the feelings of other who didn't see the value in jumping on the Million Dollar Homepage wagon. American Copywriter wallows, "Why didn't I think of it? Why why why?" we're in touch with that emotion.
Great Britain college student Alex Tew, creator of Million Dollar Homepage, has brought in $623,800 in ad revenue from selling various pixel-sized ads on MillionDollarHomepage and will, likely, reach his goal of one million dollars. Ashamedly, Tew a couple months ago, sent us a link to his page and we scoffed it off as just another Internet prank. Well, with egg on our face, we bow to the feet of the Million Dollar Homepage master and apologize profusely for not publicizing his effort way back when.
American Copywriter lists five psychological stages of dealing with Million Dollar Homepage psychosis from denial to resentment to rationalization to depression to, well, blogging about it. Tew is the man and he's even made all the way to the pages of the Wall Street Journal.
Either we suck at games or this thing just doesn't work so we'll let you give it a go. Mercury has launched an online game in which you set traps to prevent people from driving off with your new Mercury vehicle. Go ahead. See if you can save your car. OK, we did get a few points but we still suck.