Five Places to Look For Your Brand's Story

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This guest article is written by Jim Signorelli, CEO of StoryLab Marketing in Chicago and author of StoryBranding: Creating Standout Brands Through The Power Of Story.

Finding your authentic brand's story is not a luxury for the touchy-feely. Given our overloaded channels of communication and the general lack of trust (and boredom) with advertising messages, finding your brand's true emotional core and expressing it through your brand's story is a must.

But first, you must know what you're looking for.

If you ask any storywriter, "what are you trying to say through your story?" chances are you will get some expression of their worldview or values. If you ask the same question of a marketer, you might get something that resembles a unique selling proposition or what is now commonly referred to as an elevator speech. Brand stories are something very different than elevator speeches, and far more powerful.

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by Steve Hall    Jul- 2-12    
Topic: Brands, Opinion



DDB Behind Cannes Lions 'Ethel's Brew' Antics

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While covering Cannes Lions last week, a woman named Ethel kept popping up in our Twitter stream and we sort of tossed it off as some agency attempting to leverage the event for publicity. We exchanged a few tweets with the dear lady who let us know her husband had just died and she had decided to launch a beer brand, Ethel's Brew, in honor of her late husband's love for the suds.

As it turns out, an agency was behind the stunt and that agency was DDB. Led by DDB CCO Amir Kassaei, the agency created the entire campaign including Ethel's persona, her Twitter account, video and, yes, the actual beer that was served at various events during Cannes Lions. Brassierie Duyck in Jenlain, France brewed 15,000 bottles of the stuff.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-28-12    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Campaigns, Industry Events



McDonald's Explains Why Food Looks So Much Better in Ads

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We've never really wondered why food in advertising always look better than the real thing. Because we've been in the advertising business for, well, ever, we learned early on nothing in advertising looks like its real-world self, especially food. But not everyone has this knowledge so it is without surprise people always wonder why there food always looks so much better in an ad than it does in real life.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-22-12    
Topic: Brands



Vans Brand Opens Its Heart In 'Since 66' Film

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It's not easy to envision a brand as having a heart, a soul and a family history that is as near and dear as, perhaps, your own or that of your loved ones but after viewing this Vans film, Since 66, it might be a bit easier. Directed by Eliot Rausch and narrated by Steve Van Doren, the film tells the story of Vans' beginnings and how, over the years the company has affected both the family behind it and the lives of those it has touched.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-20-12    
Topic: Best, Brands, Video



Half Naked Abercrombie & Fitch Models Do 'Call Me Maybe'

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Really, it's only fair we include the Abercrombie & Fitch beekcake version of Call Me Maybe. After all, there are far too many ads that feature hot women. Isn't about time we had some ads that feature hot guys? We think so. So anyone who enjoys viewing the impossible perfect abs of young, Abercrombie & Fitch guys, have a look at this.

And for anyone interested in looking at equally hot women do the Call Me Maybe thing, check out the Miami Dolphin Cheerleaders version.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-15-12    
Topic: Brands, Trends and Culture, Video



Pete Cashmore Look-A-Like Gets Shaved by Kelly Brook

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It's been a while since we've seen Kelly Brook in the ad world. Apparently, she's been shoved aside by the latest busty babe of the moment, Kate Upton. The last time we saw Kelly she was writhing with sexual desire as an angel left behind in a Lynx ad.

Now Kelly can be seen in a Philips ad, created by UK-based WDMP, giving a Pete Cashmore look-a-like a shave. It's not your every day barber shop though. Oh no. No fat, graying white men handling the razor. Just Kelly clad in a shiny black leather dress out of which her ample breasts bulge. And this isn't your every day shave either.

Don't worry, Pete. Lisa is way hotter than Kelly!

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by Steve Hall    Jun-15-12    
Topic: Brands, Celebrity, Racy, Video



Who Needs A Foreign Language When McDonald's is Universal?

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So...this is either wonderful news for McDonald's or a sad statement about the commoditization of just about everything in this world. McDonald's Canada did a video in which they send a guy around the world who discovers that to eat, he doesn't need to know the local language. He just has to utter "McDonald's."

This is all wonderful for the brand but here's the thing. When you're traveling the world, isn't the point to experience whatever remaining local charm there is that hasn't been tainted by a global brand? Then again, this wouldn't be much of a McDonald's commercial if that were the case.

Thanks Cossette Toronto for causing us to ponder the plight of the planet.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-14-12    
Topic: Brands



vBulletin Helps Power Content Marketing For Brands

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Our roving video reporter, Murray Newlands, attended ForumCon in San Francisco yesterday and interviewed Internet Brands CTO Joe Rosenblum. Rosenblum explained to Newlands how the company's latest release of vBulletin can help brands create and manage content online and how brands can more directly connect with their online communities.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-14-12    
Topic: Brands, Social



Trader Joe's Examined, Lorem Ipsum Recruited, GoDaddy Gets Agency

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- Former ad exec Mark Gardiner, who had been in the business for 20 years, quit last year an took a $12/hour job at Trader Joe's to see how the brand became a success without an ad agency or PR firm. The result is a book, Build a Brand Like Trader Joe's.

- Here's a case study video on Jung von Matt's Lipsum.com campaign in which they buried a recruitment ad within Lorem ipsum text generated from the site.

- Here's how Fitzgerald + Co got that vintage 1972 MINI up to its 11th floor offices as part of their failed bid for the MINI business. Incumbent BSSP retained.

- GoDaddy, which for years has created its own advertising has, wait for it, hired an ad agency. Yes, a Deutsch New York campaign called Inside/Out will break this summer during the Summer Olympics on NBC.

- If you're into the NBA, you might like this. If you like basketball footage with block type messaging, you might like this. For all others, feel free to skip.

by Steve Hall    Jun-13-12    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Publishing



Apple Touts New MacBook Pro With Simplistic Ad

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Hmm. It would seem when a brand has a product as the seemingly amazing new MacBook Pro and a rabid brand following, there's isn't much that really needs to be uttered in an ad for said product.

In a TBWA\Media Arts Lab-created commercial for the new MacBook Pro with Retina DIsplay, Peter Coyote intones, "The radical new MacBook Pro with retina display. Innovation in every dimension."

And that's really all there is to say about that.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-13-12    
Topic: Brands










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