Much negativity has surrounded the launch of a new marketing company called Crayon. The company chose to make their launch announcement within Second Life where they established an island outpost. Some seem to think it's the end of Second Life because Crayon, along with all kinds of other marketers, will enter Second Life with no respect for the world's current residents. To coin a Second Lifers anti-marketing sentiment, it's all a gallery of lies. Second Life will be just fine with or without marketers.
First of all, Crayon is not a company whose sole purpose is to create marketing programs within Second Life. The company created the outpost as an efficient place to conduct business. Sure, some of the work they do may be Second Life-related but that is not the focus of the company. We don't profess to know anything more than what a couple months-worth of visits to Second Life have provided but, as far as we can see, no one is forcing Second Life residents to pay any attention at all to brands entering the world. In fact. most have been set up on islands which can easily be ignored or never discovered in the first place.
- Slim-Fast has hooked up with ABC's Dancing with the Stars for a promotion that will bring the show's stars and dancers from seasons 1-3 to 38 cities for a tour which will allow people to see the show in action and meet the stars.
- Advertising Age's Ken Wheaton has collected all the political ads floating around the web and put them in one place or easy viewing and dissection.
- Ralston360's Laura Wegner, in a podcast, interviews former Linden Labs (Second Life) Chief Evangelist and current Millions of Us Founder Reuben Steiger.
- The emission of carbon as it relates the production of paper used for newspapers, magazines and all the other forms of collateral is now becoming a hot topic and publishers such as Time Inc., Hearst and others are examining the effect the production of their products have on the environment as well as means to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
- Bishop's Finger gives women pleasure. Some not amused.
- Once things are in full swing with Draft/FCB and Wal-Mart, the already on-the-outs smiley face logo is likely to be retired for good.
- Paris Hilton's Carl's Jr. Bentley lather fest imagery is now being used to sell...dry cleaning services.
As we mentioned Monday, Crayon, a company claiming to be the world's first new marketing company will launch today at noon both in the "real world" and within Second Life on Crayonville Island. Crayon President and Founder Joseph Jaffe explains the need for the company saying, "The world has changed, but marketing, advertising, and public relations have not. There is no question that the influence organizations can achieve through traditional marketing, advertising and PR is fading fast." Crayon intends to help "marketers and communications professionals make sense of the profound changes in order to connect the dots between the burgeoning new approaches and possibilities available to them," the press release states.
Joining Jaffe in the company are former Citigroup financial guy Gary Cohen as CEO, music podcasting evangelist C. C. Chapman, social media dude, Neville Hobson, communications vet and author Shel Holtz, entertainment industry guru Chris Trela, planning consultant Francis Anderson and Aaron Greenberber and Michael Denton.
- While some attribute recent visitor loss at MySpace and Facebook to seasonality, others, including members themselves, attribute it to the increased level of intrusive advertising on the sites. It's off to Second Life we go.Watch out residents.
- Cynopsis reports TBS and MySpace have partnered for an online comedy competition called The Stand Up or Sit Down Comedy Challenge which invites amateur comics to submit videoes. The winner will appear in a George Lopez-hosted special on TBS November 18.
- The girls over at street wear brand Married to the Mob don't like the apparent girlishness of the new man and are slapping "Men Are the New Women" stickers on the backs of unsuspecting guys.
- The Weinstein Company is placing a Truth ad is its DVD release, the first being Clerks II.
- Somehow this whacked YouTube video is supposed to promote The Filter, an iTunes add on which automatically creates playlists based on what you listen to.
- With the tagline, "A World Without Science is a World Without Discovery," InterSpectacular has created four new promotional commercials for Discovery's Science Channel.
- Datran Media and the Ad Council have launched a public service advertisement email campaign across the U.S. on behalf of the Environmental Defense's Fight Global Warming campaign.
- Blah, blah, blah....a Dove Beauty spoof.
Swivel Media's Erik Hauser offers us this column on his in-depth experience with Second Life, ahead of the curve work for Wells Fargo and his companies creation of Stagecoach Island a virtual reality world based on Second Life. He offers sage advice to marketers with Second Life on the brain.
Marketing to People in Their First Life
By Erik Hauser 10.25.06
I can vaguely recall the days when things were very different.
People spent their time in a world filled with oxygen. It seems just like yesterday - OH MY - it was yesterday! Let's take a trip down memory lane shall we? The date is Jan 1st 1997, and people are starting to spend some time on this thing called the internet. Within a couple of years there was a hyper-saturated web with niche sites that had everything from exclusive glues to websites designed as destination locations for people in their mid 30's that had an affinity for poodles. Certain people claimed they would never leave the house again, and vowed to radically change their behavior.
In what could be a masterful viral approach to growing a business that goes far beyond viral marketing, Microsoft is embedding viral expansion into its new iPod competitor, Zune. Users of the Zune MP3 player can send songs to friends over the devices Wifi who have three days to listen to them before they disable. If the recipient of the song decides to buy the song within the three day period, the sender of the song will receive a portion of the song's purchase price in the form of credits to be used towards purchasing music and other items from the Zune Marketplace.
Currently, it's a rumor and it would certainly be difficult to topple iPod from its reigning position but the approach is indicative of what many brands should be doing to grow their business beyond just traditional advertising tonnage. And yea, yea, yea, the whole referral thing has been done since cavemen traded rocks but this is high profile and it will be intresting to see if it works.
CoolzOr has put together an in-depth review of the many brands who've stepped in Second Life and the tremendous growth the virtual reality world is experiencing. CoollzOr walks us through the Second Life presence of brands such as Adidas, Reebok, American Apparel, Sun Microsystems, Toyota, IBM, Starwood Hotels and Nissan. Each has created an interesting virtual representation of themselves and, predictably, not without some complaint from SL residents.
Ad agencies have jumped into the world as well including Leo Burnett, BBH and the new social media agency Crayon which will open tomorrow.
If you're interested in keeping with what's happening in Second Life, Reuters has set up shop and provides news about the world. Preceding Reuters' coverage of Second Life is The Second Life Herald which is filled with all sorts of SL activity. CNET is there too.
Second Life has been around since 1999 but has only recently caught on with marketers and, for that matter, the general public having just netted it's one millionth resident a few days ago. In an odd way, this feels like the old AOL when it passed its one million mark. If you missed out on that ride, now's your chance not to miss this one.
If you've ever wondered why anyone would sit in front of a webcam, talk randomly about almost nothing and then upload it to YouTube for all to see, dive deep into the world of social media with this video about the whole trend. Sure, there's a bunch of wackos out there and most of the stuff is irrelevant but that's not the point. The point is, styles of personal conversation are changing and there's no going back. I once had an art director ask me to stop sending him emails because the notification of arriving emails distracted him from his work. Can you imagine a world without email? Perhaps there will be a day when we can't imagine a world without this new form of video communication.
After having dissed the whole Diet Coke Mentos geyser thing saying the "craziness with Mentos doesn't fit with the brand personality" then giving in and quickly implementing a lame contest, Coke is now back in full force with Poetry in Motion, a video contest fronted by the very people Coke dissed in the first place, Fritz Grobe and Stephen Voltz, creators of one of the craziest Diet Coke/Mentos geyser videos. The two now appear in a video urging people to submit videos and teasing us with the fact the pair will release their latest video October 30, sure to be even more massive than their original geyser work
Fans of YouTube may not have to worry about their baby getting sucked up into the Google void and corporatized because now we have PhilTube. Some dude named Phil has created a YouTube look alike and has videos up that poke fun at popular videos such as the Star Wars Kid and LonelyGirl15. Of course, this isn't the next YouTube at all. It's the creation of Phil McIntyre to parody YouTube, poke fun at social media and to promote PGM Artists, his company that represents production companies to agencies and media companies.
If you didn't know who Phil McIntyre or PGM were, you'd have to do a bit of digging to see what PhilTube is all about but as promotions go, we applaud it. There's no fist bumping here - although, perhaps PhilTube should spoof the Agency.com video - and the content is amusing enough. We're told Hart+Larsson is behind he creative on this one.