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- Will Video for Food thinks a recent youTube featured video, One World, by MadV is part of a paid promotion for the supposed launch of his upcoming television show.
- Ad Agency North has drafted an extensive white paper on the rise of consumer control over media and advertising and how marketers can shift their efforts to better coincide with this new flow of information.
- The Web Marketing Association has announced its fifth annual Internet Advertising Competition (IAC) Awards. The IAC Awards are an industry-based advertising award competition for online advertising. The Competition Web site is located at www.iacaward.org and the deadline for entry is January 31, 2007.
- Hmm, that was short. Jason Calacanis of Weblogs Inc. fame has left AOL, the company that purchased Weblogs Inc. just over a year ago.
- Burger King has pissed off Spain with ads for its Double-Cheese Bacon XXL death burger because the ad runs counter to the country's recent efforts to lim down its society.
For all you "JenX" hipsterati females out there who love to shop but just don't have the time to waste finding that perfect miniskirt or winter coat, A Girl Must Shop is now here for you. Run by Megan Garnhum, the site (in blog form) promises to serve "the interests of hip, trendy gals who can appreciate the treasures that a shopping excursion can unearth, but don't have the time to discover all the riches on their own."
While we're not quite convinced hipsters would actually set foot inside Old Navy, Megan tells us "busy hipsters can find cool, affordable stuff - from the latest little black dress at Old Navy to specialized chocolates to single-serving champagne that's $4 can. And we help them find stores they didn't even know existed."
Edelman's Steve Rubel has announced his company is setting foot inside Second Life, perhaps to the chagrin of our friends over at Second Life Herald, with two initiatives. Both are aimed at giving something back to the community, an element that's been missing from most of the recent big brand entries. The first initiative involves a Business Plan competition which will help Second Lifers with their business launch goals. According to Electric Sheep, "The winner will get six months access to an island and L$350,000, plus strategic help from Edelman and The Electric Sheep Company."
The second initiative a blog (fully disclosed, no less!) called The Grid Review that will, as Steve Rbal writes, "cover the entrepreneurial spirit inside Second Life." We wish them well. Here's hoping it's done right and this doesn't cause yet another backlash from hard core Second Lifers.
Underscore Marketing President Tom Hespos, at the recent New York ad:tech conference, interviewed PayPerPost representative Britt Gustafson. PayPerPost has sparked a bit of a controversy since its launch four months ago because it pays bloggers to write positive stories about marketers without requiring bloggers to disclose which stories on their blog are PayPerPost stories and that they have received money to write them. Personally, we think it's a terribly shameful business model and one that will cause much harm to the already struggling trust level of bloggers. Give the interview a read and we'd love to hear your thoughts.
Perhaps in reaction to a recently launched company that pays bloggers to write positive things about brands without disclosure and the spread of stealth blogs and flogs, the Word of Mouth Marketing Association has released for industry discussion Ten Principles for Ethical Contact by Marketers, a document that basically amount to 1. Don't lie; 2. Be nice and 3. Don't manipulate. The ten points in full are below:
Intel has launched what it calls The Intel Centrino Duo Blogger Challenge. For Intel, Ogilvy PR gave six bloggers (Gothamist's Jen Chung, Popgadget's Mia Kim, Make Magazine's Bre Pettis, The Mommy Blogger's Mindy Roberts, Paul Stamatiou's Paul Stamatiou and Chezpim's Pim Techamuanvivit) Intel Centrino Duo laptops to seek their views. Like the Sprint Ambassador campaign and the many other blogger campaigns before, Intel hopes to get some grass roots juice and cred, none of which can usually be attained through traditional advertising excepting, of course, Apple's advertising.
The promotion also has a twist in that there's a mystery seventh blogger who supposed to be well know and will be unveiled at noon EST November 15th. Anyway, stay tuned to what the bloggers have to say and we'll see how this campaign goes.
UPDATE: Big fucking surprise. The mystery blogger is former Microsoft employee and famed blogger Robert Scoble.
Perhaps directing some of the attention away from Edelman who was behind the Wal-Mart fake blog (flog) thing, are two new blogs for McDonald's, but not labeled as such. The co-promote with Monopoly. The Consumerist points to 4railroads and McDmillionwinner (link goes to Google cache as someone inside McDonald's apparent said "oops" and pulled the blog) and explains how the two sites are inter-related. Even though they carry dead giveaway copy written not by bloggers but by copywriters, the two blogs do not mention any association with McDonald's or Monopoly.
It's not that the blogs were launched in a clandestine manner. In fact, an October 19th press release makes reference to the 4railroads blog. It's just that things should be marked as they are. There's nothing wrong with cute, teaser campaigns but to pass something off as something it's not because it's thought slapping a brand name on it will lessen it's effect is, well, just not right.
- Dog butt with flower in its ass sells dog food.
- To coincide with its famous Paint ad, Sony has put out a collection of optical allusion print ads - the kind that make you think there's something wrong with you but in a good way. See them here.
- The California Milk Processors Board, with help from Goodby Silverstein & Partners has created a two minute theater ad called Aliens.
- Tom Hespos weighs in on the Edleman/Wal-Mart blog drama. We couldn't have said it better ourselves.
Having already raised $61,931, a "hopeless romantic" has created a site called My Super Proposal where he is trying to raise enough money to buy a Super Bowl commercial in which he will propose marriage to his girlfriend. The URL of the site is, of course, registered anonymously so punditry on whether this is real or the machinations of some brand will have to wait. Acknowledging thaefact there are some pretty dedicated (weird?) people in this world along with mischievous marketers bent on doing the next coolest thing, it could go either way. We'll just have to wait and see.
- To celebrate its 25th anniversary, PC Magazine will launch a year-long celebration, starting with its December 4 issue, which will take an editorial look at the hits - and the misses - of the past 25 years.
- Working with Arnold, Brickyard VFX has created an effect-heavy spot that illustrates how Timberland, well, does something. Of note, the spot was shot in full sunlight.
- Adland received an oddly worded offer to by her site and she helpfully replied in the kindest, most helpful manner so the poor lawyer on the other end might approach things a bit differently next time.