Part of doing Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years "properly" is reflecting on how they've been done before, a cultural habit that primes everybody for Memory Lane. That's why the holidays are a perfect time to bang out some pop culture nostalgia, wrap a tagline around it and call it an ad.
Under year-old slogan "The Magic of Macy's" (JWT/NY), Macy's cashes in on these sentiments by leveraging its long brand history. Check out this patchwork quilt of "Macy's" mentions in movies and shows like Charlie Brown, Family Guy, Seinfeld, I Love Lucy and Miracle on 34th Street (which I watched every Christmas as a kid!), among others.
Pop your number in at White Castle's Crave is Calling campaign site to get random food-related calls on your phone at odd hours. It's kinda like having an aimless 17-year-old friend with the munchies.
Work by JWT. Users can also shoot the end of a Crave ad -- typical food porn-type stuff -- and upload them onto YouTube. So far only one submission has been made this whole summer, so either the campaign sucks or the copyright Nazis strike again.
Here's a :60 spot that'll flash you back to Schoolhouse Rock. It's called "A Little Change Will Do Us Good," released for Gulf Power by agency Luckie & Co. Animation by Z Animation/Dagnabit out of Atlanta. (Don't worry, there's nothing remotely Sheryl Crow-ish about it.)
The ad encourages citizens to save energy while demonstrating how Gulf Power is doing its part. Supporting efforts include print, outdoor and subsite ChangeWillDoUsGood.com, though that doesn't seem to be working right now. The ad campaign debuts Monday, so I'm positive the site'll be up by then.
Simple, G-rated, retro -- and consistent across media. Good stuff.
UPDATE: The folk at Luckie & Co. say the site will be up by tomorrow, fingers crossed.
An atrocious "Top Model" poster, a diabolically clever "Dexter" campaign, a witty "Chuck" ad, an insanely Candyland-looking "Biggest Loser" promo and an all-too-sleepy "Fringe" billboard are among the 25 best and worst fall TV "key art" ads bluntly critiqued and graded in a slideshow on Hollywood Reporter's The Live Feed blog.
The Hollywood Reporter's James Hibberd tells us, "Project was inspired by sitting in LA traffic, looking at the annual fall deluge of TV ad billboards and thinking it might be interesting to review the most compelling ones."
Check it out here. One of my favorites, Gossip Girl is first up.
European mobile carrier Orange has this pay-as-you-go program that lets users define their own reward system. To promote it, Fallon/London tapped Reuben Sutherland of Joyrider, who came up with "Grabber."
In the spot above, transparent orange balloons, shaped like random animals, float enchantedly up toward the skylight of a factory building. (This setting was labeled "timeless," which I guess is true, given that we never quite run out of deserted warehouses.)
- T-Mobile debuts first Google Android phone, thereby changing face of mobile forever, etc., etc.
- Wieden and Starbucks break up.
- Wrigley sells advergaming goldmine Candystand to Funtank. No word on why the service, which CEO James Baker of Funtank called "great viral marketing," was sold. Maybe it was just time to cash in.
- Biggie Smalls hits the big screen. "Too bad we're not in middle school anymore," says a twenty-something colleague. "I'm imagining the tears ... and the hugging."
Here's an extended version of the American Express Travel ad that aired during the Emmy Pre-Show. In it, Martin Scorsese gives Tina Fey the hard sell on Boca Raton. It's the kind of thing we might characterize as funny, even if we didn't really watch it, just because it involves an awkward timeshare situation and Scorsese prattling -- almost, it seems, without end.
"There's a possibility of nine days -- not consecutive -- near the end of August, beginning of September." I like how he asks her to make the check out to "Cash."
By Ogilvy for American Express.
Take note, CP+B: In the realm of advertising, Scorsese's like the Seinfeld for a live-in-HD, less corny generation. His AmEx work aside, see what he did for Freixenet last year. (Seinfeld occasionally still does work for AmEx too, but it's all got a datedness to it.)
...it does, and they don't wish you well.
Time has taught me to look forward to French PSAs, whose entertainment value outpaces (often dire) American counterparts while maintaining a lighter, friendlier feel.
This French PSA for colon cancer is less action-packed than the AIDS PSAs we've been so stuck on. Like a rerun of Osmosis Jones, the :30 spot takes users on an animated trip inside an apparently-healthy man's body, where a grinning cancer cell waits, eager to wreak havoc and whatnot.
Its object is to convince men over 50 to get tested for colon cancer -- which, if caught early, can in most cases (the ad says nine out of 10) be cured. Launched by the National Cancer Institute, it airs from September 14-October 8 across most major French stations.
There's something crude and flippant about these new ads by the Corn Refiner's Association, which have begun advertising to undo all the bad PR surrounding high fructose corn syrup.
In one spot, a mother casually accuses another of not caring what her kids eat; in another, an uptight boyfriend insinuates his girlfriend doesn't love him because she's offered him an artificially sweetened Popsicle.
Both the girlfriend and the accused mom get the last word in the end. Turns out the corn syrup Nazis don't know why it's bad, and are apparently only following an invisible crowd of lemmings informed by, who knows, the nasty nasty liberal media.
Each spot ends with "You're in for a sweet surprise!" and guides users to SweetSurprise.com, which sports a gigantic, disarmingly fresh ear of (as-yet-unrefined?) corn.
"I'm a PC and I sell fish!"
Say what you will about the Microsoft/Seinfeld ad campaign (or "Phase I" of a grander design), it's hard not to like these fresh-out "I'm a PC" ads.
The spots -- quirky, friendly and feel-good -- debuted last night during The Office. See all three below.
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