In a last ditch effort to convince people boneless pig meat is a good thing, McDonald's has launched the MicRib Farewell Tour. Apparently, the McRib was popular at one time but the company is considering dropping the product unless people respond to the promotion which consists of a microsite where fans can find out where and when McDonald's is serving McRib, get McRib trivia, write McRib Haikus, submit their own McRib photos, download official McRib t-shirt decals and send phone messages to fellow McRib fanatics. They can also sign the "Save the McRib" petition and explore the BPFAA (the Boneless Pig Farmers Association of America) website, bonelesspigs.org, a fictitious organization that promotes the good will of boneless pigs. Hmm. OK. Why spend all this money if the product is just going to be dumped? Oh wait, silly me, they're not dumping the product, they're renewing demand by making us feel sorry for a bunch of boneless pigs. That's it.
The Wilford Brimley-like videos are pretty funny though.
Oxygen's new series Relentless is a true crime show about women who keep pursuing justice even when society gives up. The episodes revolve around cases that have been solved. An online extension of the show is a social networking project, called SpeakUp, designed to help locate a missing woman, Daniel Imbo. Daniel is a 34 year old mother of a small child and was last seen Feb 19, 2005 in Philadelphia.
After wooing Neil French with a job offer, Hart+Larson, milking the buzz train, is now after Kate Moss promising her a chance to "take off her Choos and lie back, relax and think." She's also promised Hart+Larson will "play Twister together and then head outside to drink Coke on the stoop." There's also a video, called 14 and Wow, which, we're quite sure, has some inner meaning but, currently, it escapes us. Lastly, Hart+Larson asks Kate, and everyone else, to contact the agency at womendocokesodoweexiletheonceidealized@hartlarsson. Fun
For the Ashlee Simpson generation, Unilever's hair care product ThermaSilk is being promoted, in Canada, with a microsite called Hit On My Guy, a dress-the-hottie site where women can create the man of their dreams all while subtly being branded with ThermaSilk. Like all dress-me sites, there's a send to a friend feature and a sweepstakes to win gift certificates, an iPod Shuffle and ThermaSilk products. It's basic. It's straight forward. Maybe it will sell some product along the way. If not, there's will, at least, be a bunch of freaky looking hotties floating from inbox to inbox.
Using the soon to be ubiquitous new online advertising unit, the New York Post has plastered Sex and the City all over its Page Six section background-style. The page contains logos, banners and a background image all designed to promote the release of the HBO series' DVD release. It's not a bad ad unit if you ask us. In fact, we dreamed up the same idea way back in 1996 but since we never did anything about it all we can do is cry in our puddle of spillt milk.
Online rep firm ICON Advertising Solutions has added eight new publishers to its roster including Savvy.com and SheKnows.com. Savvy Managing Director Jonathan Gravenor said, "We chose Icon because we share the same beliefs. It's not just about selling ad space, it's about creating dynamic new campaigns that work, and go well beyond traditional digital advertising." If an ad network can do that, then things certainly have changed. The company has also signed two night-lifestyle sites, AllNightClubs.com and Nitevibe.
Today, Weblogs Inc. blog Joystiq reports receiving a slew of emails last week, apparently from individual readers tipping the site to the appearance of the game Perfect Dark Zero at Wal-Mart's Xbox 360 kiosks over the weekends.
Joystiq tracked all the emails back to the same IP address - a dead giveaway all the emails, even though they came from different names and email addresses, came from the same place. This is standard practice for spoof/spam/sham marketers who haven't yet figured out how to spoof their IP address prior to sending their marketing spam. Would it have been so bad to simply send Joystiq and honest email from Perfect Dark Zero's PR agency or their ad agency telling the editor that, gee, your readers might find it interesting that the product will be demoed at Wal-Mart this weekend? Why bother with all the "tips" when a simple email would have done the trick. Joysiq, knowing its readers interest in this product, would have certainly written about it anyway without having to have been duped.
It's hard to grasp the mindset of some marketers who, facing a media landscape with more enthusiast and niche sites willing to gush at length about particular topics like never before, would stoop to such clandestine stealth methods when these sites are just dying to gush forth endlessly about their area of expertise. Clearly, some marketers remain clueless about weblogs, fan sites, or whatever name you want to slap on this whole new genre of consumer generated media. Wake up and smell the blog, marketers!
Tomorrow, Ford Motor Company will launch Where Will Zephyr Take You for its 2006 Lincoln Zephyr. It's a sweepstakes site with prizes such as trips to New York, Miami and LA to feats at fancy eateries while staying in Hyatt Hotels. The site will be promoted with ad banners on Sports Illustrated, CBSsportsonline, New York Times MSNBC and MSN. Offline advertising will include magazine inserts and moving sidewalk ads. Currently, the site contains product placeholder information so we have no idea how goos or bad the promo is. We'll check it out tomorrow.
Recently, Geico launched Golden Gecko, an effort to encourage people to submit their own 15 second ads for the insurance company. Here's one that's fairly funny an employs the usual "you idiot" payoff at the end.
To promote the TBS global warming awareness show, Earth to America, LA-based agency/production company Stun Creative has produced Earth to America, a 2-minute short starring Jack Black and directed by Jay Roach. It also features the Six Feet Under dead dad guy.
Currently running in theaters to raise global warming awareness, the short stars Black, doing his usual shtick, as an attorney who sues corporate America on behalf of the nation's children. Earth to America also promotes two upcoming events: a full-length comedy special of the same name that will air on TBS in November and a star-studded comedy showcase taking place on November 19, 2005, the final day of the HBO Comedy Festival in Las Vegas. The Earth to America project is Executive Produced by celeb environmentalist Laurie David.