Writing on AdJab, Chris Thilk suggests agency reviews, rather than being closed door events relegating the losing agency's work to the Recycle Bin, should become a television reality show pitting 12 agencies against one another for 12 weeks. His premise calls for the public to vote for their favorite agency-created campaign and eliminate the agency-created campaigns they don't like. While we're sure the entire, incestuous ad industry would salivate over this like paparazzi after Jessica Alba's bikini-clad butt, we're not sure "regular people" would care. That is, unless it was done in a way that caused the public to take pity on our pathetic efforts to get them to buy our products. Reality TV's pretty good at conjuring up those endearing emotional moments and a shot of a pair of hot looking, 20-something creatives crying because their campaign was just shot down or a pompous account director berating an intern for ordering roll ups instead of Thai food for an important client meeting might do the trick. Mark? Mark Burnett? Are you reading this?
After 17 years with FOX 5's Good Day New York and several months off, supposedly to write a book and spend time with family, Jim Ryan is returning to New York airwaves as co-host of CBS 2 News This Morning's Avenue 2. Ryan's return is being celebrated by an Avenue Q-inspired promotion in which he joins the other muppet-like news hosts. The promotion has been running since September 12. Ryan starts September 19.
Actress Jamie Lee Curtis has signed a deal with Hasbro to become spokesmodel for the game maker's $5 million fall campaign which will promote 12 games with the tagline "Games make great gifts." Curtis, a mom and children's book author will extol Hasbro's games a a way for families to spend time together.
"This is a mom-targeted message and we decided the best way to reach them is to find a celebrity with a focus on helping children develop," said Mark Blecher, svp-marketing at Hasbro Games, Pawtucket, R.I. "Jamie Lee is a children's book author and a mom, and games are a big part of her life. She really believes in this."
Grey New York created the campaign which will air on network and cable TV.
TV Squad sums up some of the recent non-traditional marketing promotions the networks have engaged in to insure their new shows are seen. NBC is promoting Three Wishes with street teams that perform random acts of kindness by buying stuff for people with dollar bills affixed with promotional stickers. The WB is giving Supernatural a boost with coffee sleeves that project project images on the walls and ceiling. And FOX is promoting Reunion (good show, by the way) with a sweepstakes with a reunion vacation as the prize.
In a hilarious use of Asian characters - pointed out by Tian, one of the contestants, J.D., on CBS' Rockstar INXS wore a shirt that, when viewed normally, appeared to say something in an Asian language but, when viewed sideways, clearly reads "Go Fuck Your Self." Censors did not catch the trick and images of the contestant are all over the Rockstar INXS website (as we figured, CBS has removed the images) and, presumably, were broadcast as well. Screenshots of the website are captured here and here for posterity's sake.
Perhaps introducing a new category of marketing, Nashville television station WSMV landed its news chopper on a Brentwood High School soccer field as a football game was being played on an adjacent field and handed out footballs with the station's logo affixed to them. One can only hope, for the sake of the football players and male fans, the cheerleader's skirts were deliciously blown up in the chopper's wind.
FOX has acquired IGN Network for $650 million. IGN will be placed within the FOX Interactive Media segment of the company and will bolster the company's growth into the Internet medium.
Adverblog points to a French promotion for the debut of Desperate Housewives in France. Called HusbandsForSale, the site lets women buy and sell a husband online choosing them by region, age and an odd metric, perfection level. It's all in French so we'll have to take Adverblog's word it's well done.
Sure to make each episode as laborious as Trump's The Apprentice, Buick, Delta, Song, Random House, Westin Hotels and others have signed with Mark Burnett to be part of the new Apprentice: Martha Stewart. While the blatant intrusiveness of these full episode sponsorship may grate on the nerves, they bring in millions. The aggravation may be offset by Martha herself who, we venture to say, will be far more interesting than Trump.
Sullivan Higdon & Sink VP Creative Director and one half of the American Copywriter podcast team John January has weighed in on the recent Project Wannamaker study by The PreTesting Company which found creative effectiveness burns out after two to three weeks on the air.
In response to a blog post by Business Week's David Kiley which, in part, predicted a trend towards increasing offshore commercial production, January wrote, "Outsourcing production to India? Come on, kids. We can figure this out. Can't we? All it takes is open minds. Open-minded creatives, open-minded producers, open-minded production partners. So simple in pixels. So not simple in real life. But we'd better get our collective heads around this."
Kiley also mentions one agency is exploring how MTV produces so many high quality promotions and videos at low cost and how media shops, with their number crunching efficiencies are about to take on the bloated world of advertising production. Forget weblogs. That shift, if it sees light of day, is something to seriously ponder.