AllState Gets Good Hands Dirty with Car Thefts and Swan Dives

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AllState, best known for its mild-mannered commercials and provocative slogan, "Are you in good hands?" conducts an out-of-character but well-orchestrated PR stunt with the help of Leo Burnett.

In the subsequent ad a man on a mission steals a vehicle and drives it surreally off the top of a Marina City parking garage in Chicago. And just when you're like "OMGWTFBBQ," that soothing meme of a tone takes over: "AllState. Are you in good hands?"

Nervous laughter all around.

This print ad, where a Grand Am teeters precariously over the edge of that same parking structure, follows up on the idea.

AllState, typically favouring the soberest of marketing stances, surprised us with this one. It's a little like God making a joke at our expense. We're sure they got some good buzz out of the deal and maybe even an account or two since people accidentally drive off narrow parking structures all the time.

by Angela Natividad    Jan-15-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Good, Magazine, Online, Outdoor, Poster, Television



Halo Makes Good on Split Floating Ads

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For their snazzy new Halo videoconferencing tool, DreamWorks and HP commission Goodby, Silverstein and Partners (who, by the way, just won US Agency of the Year courtesy of Adweek) to help make magic.

To illustrate the medium's visual benefits and the idea that people can work together without actually being together, the agency called on The Ebeling Group to create a series of vignettes meant to be played on HDTV split-screens at events and such.

The spots, directed and conceptualized by Tennant, are esoteric but pretty, which is what they were shooting for so we suppose they succeed. They also get that complex "work together without being together" idea out nicely. We haven't added the Halo videoconferencing system to our nighttime prayers, though.

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One of the spots can be seen on The Ebeling Group's website. They're fun both to watch and listen to, and we can only imagine what it must be like trying to watch the ads in entirety when they're playing 20 feet above you on either side of your face. They must blow the mind. At the very least we figure people will stop, stare and do that awkward back-and-forth foot pivot for a second or two. That weird reaction on its own is almost worth putting ads up high and splitting them apart.

by Angela Natividad    Jan-11-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Good, Outdoor, Television



Dove Asks Users for Ads. Does This Even Count as Marketing Anymore?

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Dove hops on the consumer-generated-ad-contest hype (at this point we're trying really hard not to use the word "begging" for the 200,000th time), assisting would-be advertisers with a tutorial on Dove Cream Oil. The winning ad will air during the Academy Awards in February.

Thanks Shawn for the news. Here's hoping another ad person doesn't win this one because the way everybody's beating this "campaign strategy" to death, we're obviously trying really hard to engage consumers here. Like, really, really hard.

by Angela Natividad    Jan-10-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Commercials, Games, Online, Television



Stashwax, SNL Duke it Out Over Who Spoofed Anti-Semite First

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Stashwax makes a Braveheart spoof with the anti-Semitic comments Gibson made during his Malibu DUI arrest. Saturday Night Live does the same thing (but slightly better) with Apocalypto. We have to admit Gibson makes the pairing of his melodramatic films and drunken bigoted hyperbole a little irresistible.

Despite this inarguable fact, Stashwax has its panties in a twist over SNL's outright piracy of "their" idea, even showcasing this momentous battle on their homepage. Stashwax President Lloyd Grenache tastefully adds, "Stay off our gags [...] Gibson is our Anti-Semite - go find your own."

Looks like Stashwax is trying to leverage itself by suggesting it's SNL's only logical media nemesis. And we're sure we haven't seen the end of one-upmanship between TV and the 'net. But there's really no contest here. South Park has long owned Mel Gibson with its own artful rendering way back when Passion of the Christ came out. Sorry.

by Angela Natividad    Jan-10-07    
Topic: Celebrity, Online, Spoofs, Television



Thoughtful Robber Leaves Complete Contact Info

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The robber in this Crime Stoppers ad holds up a bank while barking out full name and contact info to the teller facing the gun. After spitting out his number he quickly adds, "...and if you can't reach me there, try--"

We laughed for a moment, then realized this is no laughing matter. Jokes aside, today's customer-oriented world demands a different kind of criminal. You have to make sure the people you're robbing are happy. Post-filesharing, stealing's gotten seriously legit. Apparently even pirates have to report hard-earned plunder to the IRS.

And all this time we thought stealing was a cop-out. That just added a whole new complication to tax season.

Agency credit for "Bank Robber" goes to DDB Canada. Perhaps one day the thoughtful antagonist can graduate to business cards like any other corporate raider.

by Angela Natividad    Jan-10-07    
Topic: Commercials, Good, Online, Television



iPhone to Revolutionize Phones, Music Players, Lives at Large

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Owning an iPhone is the equivalent of an out-of-body experience which is the only way to justify the 7% leap in Apple share post-unveiling and the $499-$599 price tag that out-hurrahs both iPod and BlackBerry.

ZDNet talks pros and cons, foreseeing death and suffering for many companies left vulnerable in the storm of common interest. With Apple's cultlike status they could have released this to the exact same jizz-in-the-pants fanfare.

There's a vibe in the air like people are down to give Apple their credit cards for safe-keeping until June, when the first iPhones will slide off conveyor belts and into warm laps. That is, if WOM is anything to go by as the topic's received a whoppin' 1,684 mentions on Google news alone per Adfreak's last count. Obviously iPhone is already more popular than the Beatles, a sweet irony because it's really only a platform for the Beatles and because Apple recently exercised total ownage over the Beatles.

Apple also changed its official title from Apple Computers to Apple Inc, better suited to accommodate its menagerie of soon-to-be-successful non-computer products, including iPhone and the iTV which will marry the 'net to the tube. That's definitely a pairing we've seen attempted before but with Apple's blessing (and the fact that the original WebTV is now owned by MSN, adding the critical pwnage component) we're sure it will fly this time around.



NFL Fan Contest Won By Ad Guy

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Of the 1,700 body paint-stained videos dropped off at the NFL's doorstep, Gino Bona's idea was chosen for the coveted 30-sec spot on Feb 4's Super Bowl. The Bills fan claims he tapped into his own "pathetic emotions" to illustrate how bummed fans get when football season ends.

Bona's also the biz-dev director for up-and-coming marketing firm Garrand. (To be fair, this is his first attempt at a TV spot.) And an Adrants insider would bet his life or at least $5 that his agency troop helped at least a little for the consumer-generated ad contest.

Commercial Director Joe Pytka will assist in turning the tear-strewn "fan" idea into a bonafide ad. Pytka's done a slew of Super Bowl slots in the past so from beginning to polished end the spot will have been invented by ad people and completed by ad people. After all that begging, way to go consumer-gen, guys.

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 9-07    
Topic: Events, Super Bowl 2007, Television



Version2, VH1 Indulge in New York Love

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VH1's reality series I Love New York gets pretty for its debut with agency Version2, which positions New York as a bachelorette and, in this representative spot, guides Lucy-in-the-Sky-eyed viewers through a menagerie of NY-loving suitors up to a mansion at its heart, where eager young guns will aim for penetration. Federico Saenz-Recio of the "Flavor of Love" series is credited for lead design and animation.

We dig the harmonious marriage between the ghetto fabulous and psychedelic qualities of the campaign, even if we doubt the show will move us education-wise. But hey, reality TV is just another way of saying the consumer is king, so what do we know?

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 8-07    
Topic: Agencies, Campaigns, Good, Promotions, Television



Doritos Begs Customers for Super Bowl Ads

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Yahoo and Doritos marry up for a consumer-generated-media contest in which the best Doritos video to hit their site by mid-January gets aired on a coveted Super Bowl spot. A crass man at the bottom of the screen repeatedly shouts, "Watch and vote for your favourite Doritos commercial NOW!"

We were really into Doritos for a minute because they had that Japanese nut-crushing thing going on, but then they started littering and now they resort to the all-time laziest but most prevalent campaign style of the web 2.0 world: begging.

We're embarking on a new horizon in which we were supposed to work with consumers, not beg for creative at every open opportunity. Are we just going to hand over our cushy jobs and Foozball-ridden offices like that? Just like that? Come on, guys.

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 5-07    
Topic: Bad, Cable, Games, Television, Video



Perez Promotes, McLennan Fires, Brides Brided

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- The networks never saw a meme they didn't want to jump on so it is without surprise they're all slapping ads for their shows up on celeb site PerezHilton.

- Dammit, online customers are good for the music business!

- This Fall, New York City taxi cabs will begin showing NBC programming. Come on! We don't want to be distracted from the city's eye candy now do we?

- Anyone with the name Hamish McLennan is bound to attract attention and the Hamish McLennan that is the CEO of Y$R did just that with the terse firing of the agency's vp world creative director Michael Patti who was said to be under delivering.

- Conde Nast is going after brides-to-be on MySpace with a page offering Brides.com video and photo content.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-07    
Topic: Agencies, Online, Outdoor, Television








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