Money Shot, Butchered
May 8, 2005: When Tiger Woods made that famous 16th hole shot, leaving the Nike golf ball hanging on the edge of the cup, swoosh visible for two long seconds before dropping in, the ad industry speculated wildly over over how Nike would turn this moment into a commercial. Well, three weeks passed, nothing was released and the industry gave up hope. In the meantime - actually, the day the shot occurred, Joe Jaffe, pointed out this perfect opportunity for Nike and created a spec spot on his own. Simply and without un-necessary editorializing, Jaffe's version illustrated the miraculous moment and ended quietly with "Just do it." It took a fantastic sporting moment, which needed no additional explanation, and commercialized it beautifully.
December 6, 2007: Hey kids! Guess what? If you study hard and get good grades, guess what you'll get? No, not a college scholarship, sillys. That would be too boring. No, if you get good grades on your report card, you'll get a Happy Meal coupon on the card that you can use to get fat...uh...have a free lunch.
Yea, people, you read that right. In-school advertising's idiocy has spread to report cards. Yes, report cards. For covering the paltry $1,600 printing cost of Seminole County Florida's 2007-2008 report cards, McDonald's was able to place the coupon on the report cards of kids who received all A's and B's. Yes, you also read that right. Only smart kids are allowed to get fat.
Vans partnered with FunMobility to disseminate all kinds of "Off the Wall" crap for your phone. Most of it is free, because all of it is an elaborate ploy to get your cell phone number, zip code and gender.
Following their Tuesday debate, both Obama and McCain's campaigns have released ads riffing off something the other person said. Well, that's not completely true. Both ads appear to revolve entirely around Obama, actually.
See McCain call Obama not presidential. See Obama accuse McCain of wanting to tax businesses for health care coverage.
The usual down-to-the-wire campaign crap, but I prefer how Obama's positioned himself as the calm guy who elucidates muddy slogans. McCain, as always, pulls the fear card.
Thirsty for more? See more McCain and Obama ads.
I don't know about you, but as a wee lass I yearned for the hip style advice that only Ford (the car company, not the modeling firm) could give me.
Responding to these dormant desires, Ford Fiesta is launching an e-zine called Neon Candy, "an uber-cool digital magazine set to feature the latest trends in music, style, movies and culture every young woman should know."
But will it teach me how to put on a menstrual belt?
The 'zine includes a web drama profiling the fictional Jen, a journalist desperate to ride the cutting edge of pop culture. Wait, isn't that the plot to Almost Famous -- and every essay ever written by Chuck Klosterman?
Neon Candy is UK-based and, confusingly, comes fast on the heels of Tango at the Tower, when Fiesta strained to associate itself with love.
The UK's Hallmark Channel and agency Ralph are promoting series nine of Law & Order: SVU with an online stress test. (Not to be confused with any such test you might have taken on a subway.)
Find out what it's like to operate as an undercover cop. You'll have something like five seconds to memorize a criminal profile, then you have to watch clips -- on which you'll be tested -- while pushing Space Bar to the sound of a pulse.
We were groggy when we did it, which I guess is no excuse; we fared horribly and are utterly unqualified to bust rapists for a living. Well, there goes my back-up career.
Giving the New and Improved! Ask.com a promotional kick, Hanft Raboy & Partners personified the nagging questions that sit fussing in the back of our heads -- or, in this case, on our shoulders.
Watch as an elephantine nag weighs down an inquisitive 8th-grade boy. Here, a cop contemplates where to meet cool girls. And in our favourite spot, a pregnant woman wonders, "Can I eat eggs, clams and crab legs?" -- through an elderly Indian man.
Each question-asker accentuates its host's musings in a slightly tone-deaf way, imbuing the spots with quirky charm. And the tagline ensures we know exactly what each shoulder-bound burden represents: "Get the best answers to all your nagging questions."
Here's "Life Story," a spot by IBD Brands for the Panasonic Lumix camera. It's narrated by a guy trying to capture meaningful moments of his life -- except the most crucial factor (his face) keeps getting cut out. Hence the need for a Lumix, which sports a wide-angle lens.
There's something appealing about "Time for a Change," Diapers.com's first stab at online video marketing. Positioned like a political ad, it offers "gas relief" and bi-potty-san support to frustrated Americans.
After walking the talk with some discount codes, a voiceover grandly concludes, "Your doodie is our duty" as the Stars and Stripes hover in the background.
Aww. Finally, something a hockey mom can really get behind.
The ad went live at Parents for Change. Users click straight into the Diapers.com site, where they can put their discount codes to good use. Good, simple stuff by The Ad Store.
In IBD Brand's "Make Me High" for J. Hampstead Fabrics, Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra does a sensual, ribbony wind dance with her bedsheets.
They convey her into the air before she alights angelically upon some faceless dude, strokes his shoulder and croons, "I've never felt so close to my man."
Cheesy, so cheesy, and there doesn't appear to be any connection with the fabric and the love interest at all. Did he precipitate the wind dance? Or did fine fabric save their fraying relationship? One commenter was all, "I was hoping the fabric was connected to his suit as workers were still stitching it."
That would've been fun to watch. This rang more like a parody for an early-'90s perfume ad: it felt loaded with banal effects (hot actress, out-of-body experience, a thin stab at love) but lacked sublimity.