Bigheads and Gigunda Bring Out Altoids' Bad Side

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We have to admit there's something about Altoids we just like. A lot. For Valentine's Day they've taken their running Curiously Strong theme and added a curiously twisted BDSM thread.

In a dark take on Herbal Essences' bubble-gum anti-Cupid campaign, Altoids embraces Cupid in all his glory ... and gives him a pair of handcuffs. And because ambiance is 9/10 of a good show, they've even opened up temporary Altoids Chocolate Shoppes, prime purveyors of their devilish chocolate mints, with darkened windows and threesomes hidden in the wallpaper. The stores are in NY, Miami and Chicago and will remain open until tomorrow at 10 PM.

Aside from the product there's not much branding going on and the prevalent hearts have slashes down the middle that recall melting chocolate. We are afraid of the (whip-wielding, leather-clad) part of us that says "YES" too readily to this bad-ass positioning scheme, which was concocted by Bigheads Network in tangent with Gigunda Group. All it needs is a cross-brand relationship with Lelo and it'll really be in business.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-13-07    
Topic: Brands, Good, Packaging



Bacon Bandages Make Scrapes and Scabs Fun Again

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Bandages are one of those categories that nobody pays much attention to - and they should, because anybody who's anybody has a box or two in the house. People just don't do enough to make them interesting.

That's why we admire the effort behind these nifty bacon bandages by Accoutrements. What is it about putting a slab of meat on a wound that makes you feel 10 times more awesome? We're not really sure, but in the unlikely event that meat bandages fail to make you feel cool, don't worry: there's a free toy inside.

Doesn't the thought just fill you with a glow? We just want to run out there without our knee pads and do something crazy, like climb fences with that prickly stuff on top.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-13-07    
Topic: Good, Packaging, Strange



Russell Stover Aims for Chic, Nobody's Convinced

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Just as we remember all the times we were pleasantly surprised for Valentine's Day, we also remember all the men, sets of grandparents and dowager aunties who gave us Russell Stover chocolates. While the drugstore candy makes good for fits of chocoholism, receiving the uncute white boxes as gifts does not always a happy recipient make.

But better packaging, chic flavours, an organic line and fresh marketing are all part of Russell Stover's plan to not only change that but take on competitors like Ghirardelli and Lindt. And with the help of PHD Media out of St. Louis, they'll even be dabbling in some guerilla work.

Well, if Target could change its image (granted, in the space of a decade) we're fully confident that Russell Stover can. Their challenge will be to convey less of a drugstore vibe without alienating the little old ladies who pull those boxes off the shelves most often. In the meantime, we remain unconvinced by the idea of a Russell Stover private reserve label. But the market, like love, is fickle. Maybe next year we'll feel differently.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-13-07    
Topic: Packaging



Bottle Openers Take Heads Off to Show How Trains Do It

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According to CSX Transportation it's common for co-eds to wander drunkenly onto traintracks in dead of night and die grisly railroad deaths that often involve bright lights, loud noises, metal on flesh and decapitation.

(We've also heard this happens to koalas in the wild. Drunk off eucalyptus, they fall off their trees and are often hit by cars. But that's a digression.)

To get the word out to college students, agency Exit10 of Baltimore distributed wallet-sized bottle openers that portray a man being decapitated when used. We thought this was a silly idea until we actually saw the bottle opener. Now we just feel very uncomfortable. "This is what a train can do to your body," reads the sober black text against the metal finish.

The sight of it made us rub our necks and put down our requisite Adrants martini. Dude. Talk about a buzzkill.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Good, Packaging, Promotions, Strange



Swatch Makes Love Voodoo-Style

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If lust doesn't do the job for you this Valentine's day, Swatch suggests voodoo. And if the voodoo fails, at least the apple of your eye will have a neat new watch and a weird-looking stuffed toy.

Swatch is running a neat little Valentine's Day campaign with love voodoo master Eddy G Lazaro. In this video he shows you how voodoo love Swatch watches are made. It's not nearly as action-packed as it sounds and there are no shrunken heads, but he does do that neat eyes-rolling-back trick. And each voodoo love Swatch comes with a bonafide voodoo doll.

What can beat that? We're at a total loss. This is just a notch better than smacking your partner on the back of the head and dragging her by the hair into your cave.

by Angela Natividad    Feb- 9-07    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Good, Packaging, Strange



Cheesy Sex Toys Get Chic, and You Can Thank the Swedish

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Valentine's Day approaches and with that, a frenzy to work out how best to show partners you love them. But love is abstract and ridden with dangerous cliches. How many longtime wives still appreciate the stock flowers and chocolates gesture? Lust, however, is flattering, easy to define and easier still to buy for.

Swedish company Lelo takes the traditionally cheesy sex toy and turns it into something to covet with sleek designs, subtle sizes and sweet little nicknames for its models like Lelo, Nea and Lily. It's a little like the iPod of vibrating gadgets. And for Valentine's day Lelo expands its narrow product line to include a limited-edition pleasure toy just for the season.

Lelo Valentine is a soft black ergonomically sound toy that comes in hot pink packaging and has "love" scrawled prettily right at the pleasure point. Created by Jesper Kouthoofd, it'll only set you back $129.

This year you can demonstrate your love - via lust - in no less than 16 speeds. And you can do it without looking like a prick clutching yet another prick in a giftwrapped box. With their fancy handiwork, high-brow price tags and low-key marketing, the Swedish are quite possibly the best thing to ever happen to the sex toy industry. And we're happy they've filled the niche, considering the Swiss have already taken cheese, chocolate and watches.

by Angela Natividad    Feb- 8-07    
Topic: Packaging, Racy



AHA Buys Super Bowl Time, Sidesteps Product

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After spending $4.2 million on a couple of spots in the uber-competitive ad orgy called Super Bowl, you naturally want some serious run for your money. But not everybody takes the expected measures to ensure an ROI.

Adrants reader Roy points us to this interesting story about the American Heart Association, who paid the Super Bowl invoice and dropped still more cash to produce light-hearted cautionary piece "Heart Attack," then did something odd: they neglected to mention the product, heart drug Altace.

"I don't think it is appropriate to have some guy in a white lab coat staring into the audience saying, 'You are going to die if you eat another chicken wing,'" says Rebecca Sroge, executive VP and managing director of Glow Worm, the agency that created "Heart Attack."

more »

by Angela Natividad    Feb- 2-07    
Topic: Good, Packaging, Super Bowl 2007



Land O Lakes Indian Bares Breasts With Knee Cap Packaging Trickery

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For all you perverts out there. Oh wait. Sorry. That's just us. And maybe the dude over at Where's my Jetpack who had some fun playing with Land O Lakes butter. No, not the product you sickos. The packaging. Apparently way bakc in the 30's, the designer of the packaging, Jess Betlach thought he'd have some fun by adding the visual hint or female aureola/nipple to the Indian woman's knees. The knees, you ask? Well, according the Where's My Jetpack, thousands of boys would cut the knees off, cut a whole where the Indian woman is holding the product and insert the image of the knees thus creating the illusion of an Indian woman holding her bare breasts.

Remember, this was before Playboy. Before Juggs. Before the Internet. Before National Geographic, perhaps. Apparently, a guy had to so what he had to do to get his daily moment of satisfaction. Humorously, Where's My Jetpack promises to post Land O Lakes' cease and desist when it arrives.

by Steve Hall    Jan-24-07    
Topic: Brands, Packaging, Strange



Microsoft Does More Viral Kitsch Stuff for Vista

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You might be wondering who the odd man at left is. He's Dr. Woodrow I. Lovett, Director for the Institute of Advanced Personhood, or Microsoft's latest attempt to make good on neurotic left-of-center Woody Allen-esque humour. While their Clearification effort invents HANDTOSS, an overachiever disease, the IAP promises solace for such sufferers.

The success of the spoofy sites depend heavily on Demetri Martin, whose latest Comedy Central special was heavily sponsored by Microsoft. We thought Clearification was neat but are now over it. What's Vista got to offer us? We hear it's pretty lackluster. When they can invent a cure for underachieving maybe we'll start paying attention.

by Angela Natividad    Jan-24-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Online, Packaging, Promotions



Contextual Corrigendums Less Likely Offline

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Flickr user rcrowley informs us contextual advertising has leaped off the webpage and into the real world. Since he currently has a small cold, he headed over to Walgreen's to pick up some Dayquil. He noticed the top of the bottle was affixed with a sticker that read "Need Facial Tissue?"

While we're down on contextual advertising at times, were thinking it's less likely we'll see a turpentine ad affixed to the toe tag of a teen who died from drinking turpentine than a similar instance online. Good old, human-controlled advertising to the rescue.

by Steve Hall    Jan-24-07    
Topic: Good, Packaging, Point of Purchase










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