OMG! Cause Groups Complain, Ad Age 'Unleashes' Witty Headline

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It's a forgone conclusion that Verizon ads suck and deserve to be pummeled by bitchy ad critics such as those employed at trade rags like Adrants. Oh wait, that's us. Oops. That would be...leading industry publication Adrants. Now that we have that settled...

It's official. America has no sense of humor and has become so literal, no one can say anything at all without offending various cause group members who, due to an onslaught of grade school self-esteem-focused curricula which have rendered them incapable of chilling out and enjoying life without looking at it through a microscope.

So what's all the fuss about this time?

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by Steve Hall    Jul-22-08    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Opinion, Strange



Plaid Nation Tour '08 Rolls Heavy on the West Side

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Plaid sent over an envelope loaded with swag (which Heehaw Marketing took a picture of so we wouldn't have to) to remind us the Plaid Nation 2008 West Coast Tour is CURRENTLY IN PROGRESS.

The Plaid van's current location: Vancouver. It'll be creeping its way south toward Los Angeles as the weeks progress.

Now that you know, hit the website -- less of a site, really, than a social media orgy -- and try getting the Plaid crew to pay your ailing agency (or your best friend's engagement-impaired company) a visit. Also check out the Van Cam tab where you can play van voyeur from the driver's seat, or the passenger's seat, or roadside, if that's the way you roll.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-21-08    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Campaigns, Events, Social



Enough With the Stupid, Obviously Fake Video Stunts!

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The creators of this Mini John Cooper video must have been watching all those fake Nike videos while concepting. This joke is so lame and so stupid, it's amazing those charged with approving it didn't simultaneously barf and yawn at the same time. Even stupid people know the physics of this would kill the guy (and/or break the board) before anyone got off the ground.

Stupid trick videos are funny. But they have to be at least a tiny bit believable to work. And can we stop with the psuedo-amateurish, wobbly camera stuff? Even a five year old with a Flip video can hold a camera more steadily than the idiot who filmed this disaster.

by Steve Hall    Jul-21-08    
Topic: Brands, Video, Worst



Virgin Wants to Put You on TV!

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To nurture the creative minds of future filmmakers, Virgin's "What Happens Next?" campaign poses three unfinished scenarios: "Kidnap," "Police" and "UFO." Each starts at a nowhere-ville diner called the Rattle 'n' Hum.

The snapshots are only a few seconds each and have a Tarantino sheen, so feel free to make use of your local leather-clad gimp. There's also a "designing" tool to help bring the pieces to their conclusions, which range from Devastatingly Minimal to Comic-Con.

Best entry wins TV time! Put together by Host/Sydney.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-21-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Consumer Created, Online, Television



Sorry, Quiksilver, We Already Have One Self-Esteem Fund

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Quiksilver's inviting Real Women! from All Walks of Life! on a Creative Journey! to promote its new line of women's clothing. The subsite includes a hyper-bohemian product preview and postcard gallery, where you can download warm fuzzy (and pink!) messages like "Sometimes finding your destination means trying on all the options." Gotta love a clothing pun.

The campaign is targeted to fresh-outta-college women in a state of quarter-life crisis. "Our purpose was to inspire not only the apparel Quiksilver was going to design for this journey, but create a brand idea that celebrates the experience of defining yourself in the world as an intelligent, creative, independent woman," rambled John Boiler of agency 72andSunny.

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by Angela Natividad    Jul-18-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Trends and Culture



Dunkin' Donuts Stands to Benefit from Knee-Jerk Hatred of 'Moving' Ad

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I've seen "Moving" for Dunkin' Donuts about 486 times -- and I find it more loathsome after each sitting.

But Dunkin' knows how to maximize a spot's branding power. If you watch any amount of weekly TV, you'll see it enough times to be mouthing the words in a month. And the music is so distinctive, so gratingly terrible, and so instantly recognizable that it will probably do its label more good than harm in the long run. Life can be cruel that way.

"Moving" is part of the Hill Holliday-developed "America runs on Dunkin'" campaign, which has been running -- successfully, even -- for the last two years. Message consistency contributes to its sheen, but rival Starbucks, which lost its grip on its own brand, also threw plenty of kindling in Dunkin's direction.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-17-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television



Driverside Pays Parking Tickets, Cars Go Zen, Actresses Put Brand Icons Out of Work, Gary Busey Becomes GotVMail Mascot

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- Jezebel compiled a list of the top 10 female product advertising icons -- and the actresses that could replace them. That Mrs. Butterworth's/Queen Latifah one is hella funny. Now you: go forth and laugh.

- Driverside.com, which sends reminders for auto maintenance and calculates repair estimates in your area, is paying parking tickets off for 100 San Francisco inhabitants. Register at the above link and check back July 25th to see if you're among the scott-free parking violators.

- Gary Busey's objectively bananas, and here's proof. If you're planning to argue, I've got three words for you: stupid, misfortunate placenta.

- Neat water campaigns: submerged-society ones for Australian brand Insight, quiet dreamscape ones for Diesel.

- BooneOakley is behind State Farm's "Experience Peace of Drive" car wash campaign. (Apparently you also get a free massage.) More from the effort: bathing car, car and yoga, car and cucumber, car and candles, car and acupuncture. (Kinda cool. I had a fat friend whose mom made him visit an acupuncturist to induce weight loss. It didn't work, but he kept telling her it did because he found the needles soothing.)



Because 'Blood, Sweat and Tears Factory' Would Have Been Too Long

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Promotional video of the Fiesta Love Factory features people in various states of G-rated ecstasy. Those warm fuzzies are then conveyed out of their bodies and into a Ford Fiesta.

News flash: Coke's Happiness Factory managed to sneak by us, mostly on Coke's frothy reputation and the romance of Willy Wonka, but there is nothing romantic about an auto factory. (Or any factory, actually. I went to the Jelly Belly and saw sadness calcifying behind the taffy machines.)

And lest we forget, Ford was the first home of the assembly line -- which is cool considering it kicked off our industrial revolution and all, but those first assembly line vehicles weren't made with vicarious bliss. They were made on the backs of tired, underpaid mummies and daddies. Think about that next time Papa comes home and demands his nightly gin.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-17-08    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Online



Joss Whedon's Dr. Horrible Could Make Profitable New Model for Online Serials

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If you were a fan of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer or its slightly traumatizing spin-off Angel, you might get teary with glee over Acts I and II of Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, an effort by creator Joss Whedon to raise crowdsourced funding for a web-only show. (See trailer!)

Dr. Horrible, played by Neil Patrick Harris, is a singing supervillain. He uses the blog to share his dreams of dominating the world and joining an elite frat, the Evil League of Evil, whose membership he'll probably never earn unless he defects for a series that takes itself more seriously, like True Blood.

"If you're gonna get into the Evil League of Evil you have to have a memorable laugh," insists Dr. Horrible, who looks like a cross between Doogie Howser, MD and Butters masquerading as Professor Chaos.

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by Angela Natividad    Jul-17-08    
Topic: Brands, Celebrity, Good, Online, Promotions



Tat Yer Teeth, Swig Vodka with Tim and Eric, Talks Stocks with Bingo Players

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- Nonesuch Records redesigned its site so artists can "directly" interact with fans. Created by Sisu and branding partner Axiom.

- We were checking email and minding our own business when Gay List Daily suggested we put a cock in our mouth. "Or 32 if you're feelin' crazy." It was appalling. And then we realized they were talking about tooth tattoos -- the low-key variation of a rapper's grill, but just as expensive if you're fickle.

- ABSOLUT Vodka is doing some weird shit right now. Its current online video campaign features Tim and Eric from Tim and Eric's Awesome Show, Great Job. (It's totally off-putting, but you gotta stick with it.) "I only made cookies for three..." Bloody hilarious. If you're not down with Tim and Eric, you're making baby Jesus cry.

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