Ask, Ask a Ninja Get Together for Algo

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While we thought their last algo campaign was kind of lame, we did admire Ask.com's attempt to get people actually involved with the search engine.

Keeping with that, Ask has partnered up with Ask a Ninja. Puppetvision points us to a new ninja video called Ninja Sayings, where the ninja takes everyday vernacular and gives it ninja roots. (We have always known, for example, that "OK" actually means "zero kills.")

At the end of the video you're invited to look a word up on Ask.com. After you do that you get a bonus ninja video, which makes up the top search result.

We like it: good clean interactivity, minimal commitment, instant reward. How often can you say that about a campaign that bounces you from one site to another? Not often. This goes to show that the old adage "when in doubt, find a ninja" is actually sound.

NewTeeVee points out Ask a Ninja is now powered by Castfire, whose audio/video CMS tool they've been using to serve their fare on the Ask site.

by Angela Natividad    May-22-07    
Topic: Brands, Good, Online



Samsung Searches For Next Gary Brolsma

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Calling Gary Brolsma. Gary? You still out there? Samsung desperately needs you since you're the only one who can turn lip syncing into an overnight, worldwide sensation. You see, Samsung's UpStage Contest is looking for people to film themselves while lip syncing Melody Club's Destiny Calling. If you can deliver Numa Numa goodness, Samsung will award you a round trip for four to LA with a two night stay at the Standard Hollywood, concert tickets of your choice, a $3,000 shopping spree, four UpStage phones and a camcorder. Sweet deal, huh? Come on, Gary, we know you can do it. We know you're dying to get back to the top of the viral charts. Admit it.

So give us some of that "Mi ya hi, mi ya ho, mi ya ha" goodness. Samsung will love you and so will we. Of course the song Samsung chose sucks compared to that catchy Numa Numa tune.

by Steve Hall    May-21-07    
Topic: Brands, Good, Promotions, Video



Pure CGM Celebrated, Influenced CGM Trashed

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Factory Publishing is promoting a Triumph Motorcycle-sponsored computer-generated online graphic novel called The Many Worlds of Jonas Moore which stars British actor Colin Salmon. Viewers and musicians are being asked to participate in the storyline by creating their own adventures and submitting their own soundtracks for the show.

In a tandem effort we're not completely clear on, Factory Publishing has created two videos that trash media and ad agencies involvement with consumer generated media somehow labeling them unnecessary middlemen. While it's true some agency managed consumer generated media campaign have resulted in work that's far from pure CGM, these videos paint agencies as a sort of Hitleresque evil which stunts the growth of unadulterated CGM.

more »

by Steve Hall    May-18-07    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Consumer Created, Opinion, Trends and Culture



Bud Light Hangs With Beach Blanket Bimb...Uh...Beauty

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No sooner to we take beer marketers to task for foisting idiotically staged and sexually charged commercials, do we stumble upon these Cannonball Agency-created, Cutters-edited ads for Bud Light's Have Soome Fun With It Campaign. Oh sure, some might say these are just as idiotic and sexually charged as every other beer marketer's work but we'd disagree. There's just something intriguingly different about these ads that different enough to maintain interest. Feel free to disagree because we know some well. But you all know we love a good debate.

by Steve Hall    May-18-07    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Good, Racy



Buying Frenzy Continues With Microsoft Scooping aQuantive For $6B

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Google bought DoubleClick. Yahoo bought Right Media. WPP bought 24/7Real Media. Microsoft, always the follower, never the leader, just bid $6 billion to acquire digital giant aQuantive. It's an information grab as companies wake up and realize their prized and proprietary information is increasingly in the hands of their very own competitors.

by Steve Hall    May-18-07    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Policy, Research, Tools, Trends and Culture



TTs Invade Toronto - Try Not to Panic

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For the new Audi TT, Lowe Roche, Toronto decided to leverage what we're going to call Boston Syndrome and invade a town with unexplained symbology: giant TTs. Note crop circles. Note video (which is actually quite gorgeous and pleasant).

Orwell would have a blast in '07.

Our only major critique of these sorts of campaigns is that unless you're blowing minds with your guerilla efforts, it might be asking much to assume your consumer is going out of his or her way to pursue an understanding about why TT's are suddenly appearing all over the place.

Out of resentment, they might even go out of their way not to.

And to be fair, corporate art (which also proliferates every corner) is so crappy they might not even register the significance of the TT's, unless they wander mistakenly into a cornfield over lunchtime and stumble across a crop circle.

by Angela Natividad    May-18-07    
Topic: Brands, Guerilla



'The Break Up' Illustrates Ridiculousness of Advertiser/Consumer Relationship

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Microsoft Trade Marketing Manager Geert Desager has launched a site Bring Back the Love which features a video, The Break Up, that hilariously illustrates the ridiculous relationship between advertisers and consumers by making each human and filming them while on a date. Working with Microsoft Agency Openhere, the long-form commercial takes a hard look at what we all like to call the "relationship" between advertiser and consumer. Clearly, at this point, it is far from a relationship which is why this video is entitled The Break Up.

Desager hopes the video and the blog will foster discussion about this ridiculous notion of relationship and how it can be better defined or reworked so that an actual relationship can occur with The Break Up. While never a good thing to com[are to a classic, this thing's right up their with the famed Truth in Advertising.

by Steve Hall    May-17-07    
Topic: Best, Brands, Video



Miller Lite Is Not For Stupid People

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For some reason, Miller Lite thinks it's beer is only for smart people. Or at least that's what Crispin Porter + Bogusky wanted Miller Lite and the rest of us to think as we watch this recent commercial. We've all seen these idiots out and about and have always distanced ourselves from them. Nothing like being lumped together with a bunch of chanting idiots...especially when a beautiful bartender mistakenly thinks you're one of the buffoons.

by Steve Hall    May-15-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials



Flashback: French Chortles at Notion of Gmail

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We just thought this was funny. And it wasn't that long ago, either.

In April 2004 Garrett French of Web Pro News wrote a post about Google's announcement of GMail - which, in Google's "loose, freewheeling" style, fell just before April Fool's Day.

"How long," French scoffed, "would it take before that ocean of email burst from the Google server farm and sank Washington?"

*Observes moment of silence for nostalgic wave*

Funny how standards can change.

by Angela Natividad    May-15-07    
Topic: Brands, Online, Opinion, Strange, Trends and Culture



Culture Jammers Reprise McDonald's Fat Kid for KFC

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That poor McDonald's Fat Kid. We don't know where he came from but he's been our poster child for the obesity discussion over and over and over and over and, yes, over again.

Now, it seems, KFC wants in on the action. Well, not exactly. They're just victim to the latest culture jamming episode to hit the streets of East London.

by Steve Hall    May-14-07    
Topic: Brands, Outdoor, Spoofs










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