Kenneth Cole's 'Awearness' Whores For Peace, Love and Understanding

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Rehab, the cats behind Gap's Sound of Color effort, just produced a series of videos for Kenneth Cole's most current campaign "We All Walk in Different Shoes," put together by Kenneth Cole's in-house creative crew.

As always with Kenneth Cole, the campaign exploits the language of fashion to raise awareness for popular social issues. (Or maybe it's the other way around.) At left is the creative for Regan Hofmann's HIV video. See other shorts -- including stories about a Sikh businessman and a duo of Israeli and Palestinian film directors -- at KennethCole.com/Thinkers.

And here's the campaign blog, Awearness, which generated winces all around with the all-caps tagline, "To be aware is more important than what you wear."

We dig Rehab's audio/visual spin on an old Kenneth Cole agenda. But we can't say we're crazy about using tacky puns like "Awearness" to generate trendy cause mojo.

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



Paper Cranes Stimulate Savings while Saving the World

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To hock its wares, Virgin always aims for just left of left-field. Looking for a flight? Seek thee out the least enthusiastic of the bunch. Need a mortgage? Geriatric sex should get you off. Investment aid? A pyromaniac ballerina can help you with that.

Virgin Money's latest campaign is no exception. It takes a kooky idea and makes it totally logical in context.

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by Angela Natividad    Mar-17-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Good



UGC Can Reinforce Existing Brand Messages? Yes, Says Dove

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According to Collective Intellect, which tracked brand lift for advertisers before and after the Academy Awards, Dove outdid 10 other major advertisers, elevating its position 500 percent with pre-show buzz.

Consistency, and refining an old model, were probably key. Dove rehashed last year's campaign strategy: appealing to audience members to produce and rate ads for its Cream Oil product. The winner was a woman named Celeste Wouden, whose spot lacks the slapstick, paging-Cartoon-Network! feel we've come to expect from UGC efforts. In fact, it looks like a stock Dove commercial (and for WAY less money).

Watch the ad at DoveCreamOil.com. Runners-up can be seen in the gallery.

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Bad Breath Burns Skin off Skulls, Says Scope

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Test your breath on an innocent bystander, courtesy of Scope and the fine people at Dentsu and Crush (Toronto). What have you got to lose? It won't be the last thing that attacks your ego today.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-14-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online



Oh Look! Abercrombie & Fitch Does Nudity. How Novel

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OK, OK, we'll cover it. Geez. Just because all everyone thinks we write about here are boobs and booty doesn't mean we're always going to cover the latest nudie film from Abercrombie & Fitch. But, since you beg, we aim to oblige so here it is in all it's NSFW glory.

We could comment on how it degrades human morality or how, conversely, it celebrates one of the most normal human states we know, nudity, but we're not going to burden you with endless pontification that would amount to nothing more than endless babble. Speaking of endless babble, have we reached our word count so this text will properly wrap around the ubiquitous (obligatory?) racy image we've included here for you?

by Steve Hall    Mar-13-08    
Topic: Brands, Online, Racy, Video



Surprise, AOL Buys Bebo

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In a surprise twist of social networking fate, AOL buys Bebo, which is like MySpace with a British accent, less garish colours and funnier videos.

Word is that Bebo will help AOL expand internationally -- and by "help" we mean Bebo's gonna expand internationally and AOL will point and go, "That's totally US!" This year Bebo plans to breach Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany and France.

Meanwhilst, AOL itself continues to hemorrhage value. Supposedly it's going to shaft half its sales force. Also, ad exec Curt Viebranz just left, and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes openly admitted they're whoring for an offer. Or in his words, "whatever configuration makes it the strongest and most valuable."

Uh-huh.

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by Angela Natividad    Mar-13-08    
Topic: Brands, Online



ING Invests Retirement Figures with Friendly Feel

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Here's a story about a nifty ING campaign promoting "your number," the dollar amount you want to save for retirement. In the associated spots, people walk, work or play while toting big orange numbers around. And they're playful. See how the older guy in the pic at left is checking out the younger guy's figure?

See "Nurture," which about how you work to take care of your number so it can take care of you. And this is "Intro," which explains what "your number" is about.

We're fans of ING, which tries making saving fun with feel-good promotions and bright colours. Also see Planet Orange, a financial learning center for kids, and check out ING's orange cafes.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-13-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Good, Television



Comfeze Brings Uncomfezable Twist to Typical Diaper Ad

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Wow. This is warped. That's apt, because it's a spoof spot for Scream TV, which wants us all to (tagline, tagline!) "Get scared more often." And we're definitely feeling the fear.

The spot for fictional brand Comfeze was put together by Zig, Toronto.

Does Depend make ads? Maybe Zig should look into that. There's a whole market of fear and absorbency waiting to blossom before our eyes.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-13-08    
Topic: Brands, Good, Online, Spoofs, Strange



Bravia Teases, Spitzer's Sporty, Sienna Sexes, Gentlemen Go Ginger, ABSOLUT Greens the Scene

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- Check out the 2008 Sony Bravia ad teaser, pop-infused and action-packed with controversial bunnies.
- Support your local politician's private life. Sport a Spitzer 9! (Thanks, Rob.)
- Watch some beach-combing models turn each other on over a Toyota Sienna. We love how Toyota isn't afraid to take the piss.
- What, bored with the Flugtag? See Red Bull surf.
- Don't just be gentle. Or ginger. Be a gingerbread gentleman. For Starbucks' Pass the Cheer (thanks, BG!).
- Obama Mobile. Seriously.
- Bill Gates has joined LinkedIn, stirring rumours that Microsoft might look to collaborate with the social networking site. Or take it over. Maybe he's just lonely.
- ABSOLUT Vodka tries saving the planet with uncut films from the Live Earth film series. Next time somebody offers us a plastic bag, we're going to slap him in the face. With an iron glove.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-12-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Cause, Commercials, Online, Political



Client 9, We Wish We Knew How to Quit You

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Courtesy of Dead As We Know It, here's more off-the-cuff advertising at (former) Governor Spitzer's expense. This spot for Balvenie Single Malt Scotch reads, "I think I could have offered 'Client-9' a far more tasteful nightcap."

Also see Virgin Mobile's jab at the Spitz. In the days of instant information and democratized publishing, everyone gets to be a satirist (at best) and a muckraker (at worst). Poor guy.

Some sad news: Spitzer has just resigned. He will be replaced by Lt. Governor David Paterson, the state's first black governor as of Monday.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-12-08    
Topic: Brands, Political, Poster










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