Because bodice-ripping is so last-century, Harlequin struggles to make the grade as the ages of readers increase slowly.
In addition to reworking the hot-sex-for-lonely-girls formula for today's woman under Red Dress, they're also trying to reinterpret the face of today's man candy, launching another cattle call in desperate pursuit of a man who's neither Fabio nor gangly model.
But what do you feed a woman all hopped up on Sex and the City steroids? A dumb but loyal cook? A mascara-sporting emo rocker? A Silicon Valley hipster? A vegan cowboy?
Oops. That didn't go so well. Sometimes the hottest shop just isn't the best shop. After just over a year, Miller Brewing and Crispin Porter + Bogusky have parted ways with CP+B resigning the account.
Crispin Chief Creative Officer told Advertising Age the two made every effort to make the relationship work but split because of "fundamental differences over creative and strategy." Miller isn't talking.
Maybe it's time for the beer babes to return. Those two fat dudes were definitely no fun to watch.
In a surprise move, Paul McCartney unveils his status as premier artist on Starbucks' label Hear Music with the release of his current album under the Starbucks banner. This move marks his surprising departure from Capitol Records after 43 years.
We've been huge Starbucks fans since the early 90's. With the prominent inclusion of a Beatle on their roster, our Starbucks visits will take on the sensory experience of a menage a trois. We have chills just thinking about it.
Howard Schultz feels similar if Advertising Age is any indication. "How could a coffee company sign a Beatle?" he allegedly asked in awe. Frothy as usual, McCartney appeared before the Starbucks corporate team and wished love and kisses to everyone present, then cheerfully admonished that they all get to work: "I look forward to with all of you guys and reaching people around the world in a new way, and let's get on with it, man!"
Apparently the Mr. Universe days are over. Gold's Gym, one of his last strongholds, has finally decided to divorce the oil-slicked rock-hard prototype patron of their long heritage to draw yoga mamas and mellow boomers into the building.
With that in mind, Gold's is scrambling to make their $30 million ad budget and 40+ years of illustrious history count for the new crowd, who look at it as a nostalgic symbol of times past. Advertising Age has a spot from their new campaign. It's got an aggressive Gold's feel to it but the imagery is more typical of what you'd find at Bally's or 24 Hour Fitness. The spot isn't particularly thrilling and we worry they're wasting some serious brand equity by being too self-conscious about the competition.
You know what would be really awesome? Starting a Gold's-sponsored Arnold Fitness Challenge, where Arnold Schwarzenegger is whipped back into shape by the frothy little yoga mamas Gold's is trying to hard to court. We'd pay to see that. Well, probably not. But we might at least turn the TV on. Come on, Gold's. Don't be such chickenshits.
Nike is less shoe purveyor than societal tastemaker. With symphonic float like a butterfly, sting like a bee undercurrents, their marketing work consistently defines our image of victory and strength-oriented aesthetics. They even turn breathing into athletic art.
Nike's especially good at throwbacks and mash-ups. We're old-school Rakim fans so we're pretty taken with this web-only spot for Nike Force, entitled Force Heritage.
The lovechild of R/GA and Stardust Studios, the spot showcases 25 years of Nike Force ad history with a Rakim-laced custom track from creative director Alex Moulton and composer Mike "G:Neu" Genato of Expansion Team.
It takes a special kind of touch to make Air Forces appealing; we were never fans of the shoe. But it has lent itself to a lot of evolution and playful cultural design. We kind of wish the spot played more with that than with the usual sweaty basketball player mishmash.
Nonetheless, the spot's delicious. Look at us, look at us, we're gushing like head-bopping break-dancing groupies back in grade school. We'd act on the feeling except at this point in our lives we'd probably break our tailbones. Better to just bob.
- MTV has added a user-generated category to its Movie Awards.
-Nike is opening an agency review with its U.S. business, currently handled by Wieden + Kennedy, getting first look.
- After many years with JWT, Kraft's Miracle Whip is heading over to DDB.
Mark Cuban must be laughing his ass off now as Viacom, following unproductive settlement talks, sues Google and YouTube for $1 billion in damages.
- If your into the whole March Madness thing, Coke has a nice Brack-O-Matic site that makes picking teams easy.
- Nickelodeon UK has launched Musical March, a site where kids can create their own musical videos and upload them to the site. The best videos will air on Nick JR Video.
Not that anyone cares about the latest and greatest plastic wrap - except, of course for freakish fetishists - but an attendee at a recent focus group at which product names were explored for a new Ziploc product leaked a few of the considered names to Copyranter. As usual, they are all meaningless using stupid additive names like Duron, Fortex, DuraMax, Freshlastic, Durapreme, Reliashield which convey absolutely nothing about the product which is, supposedly, just a better, more sticky plastic wrap.
This made us laugh. Not quite so annoying as the fast talking T-Mobile Cheerleader - who was actually more endearingly cute than bothersome - comes this beach bitch who, while berating her agent on the phone, trips over a bottle which releases a genie who grants her three wishes. While the genie isn't sure he can grant the woman's first two witches, the third one's easy.
The Budweiser spot, which broke March 1, was created by DDB Chicago and produced by anonymous content.
As a marketer, what do you do when your brand icon has been known the world over for 35 years? You open an agency review and change it of course. It's the natural way of things, of course. While we never thought of Singapore Airline's Singapore Girl as any sort of sexist symbol, some feel her time has come and she should step down as the last of many female flight attendants who have been featured by various airlines over the years. While airline officials say the Singapore Girl may remain part of the brand in some form, Singapore Airlines VP of Public Affairs says, "What has worked well in the past is not always an indication of what will work well in the future It would be a mistake to cling to the past as a measure of success for the future. We want to explore the creative market; see what others have to offer." While true, we're hoping the airline, which continually ranks high for service and experience, doesn't become just another American Airlines cattle car.
- Look! Look! Another YouTube video contest turns into an ad campaign! This time it's Southwest Airlines who's awarding the winner of its December contest with placement during NBA playofs in April. Are you just oozing with anticipation?
- Dial thinks it can get a piece of Axe's body spray action with the introduction of its RX Bodyspray. While Brandweek's Constantine von Hoffman thinks Axe's advertising has been "highly sophomoric," we'd choose to categorize it as highly successful. Dial has an uphill battle on this front.
- Eesh. Now we have to endure Rachael Ray in Dunkin' Donuts ads...through 2010!
- Massachusetts retailer Jordan's Furniture is offering a full refund to anyone who buys furniture before April 16 if the Red Sox win the World Series.