Newcastle Makes Billboard Debut with Smoothness Authority Campaign

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Newcastle dips its toe into national print media with a gargantuan effort orchestrated by VitroRobertson. To add personality to the popular brown ale they're focusing on out-of-box interactive efforts, like these smoothie and tango ads promoting the beer's smoothness.

Billboard-to-print versions like Snake Farm and Golf Academy present the interactivity opportunity with phone numbers that, when called, allow consumers to audibly experience a smoothness authority lauding the beer.

Our local library had a similar call-in service for children who wanted stories read to them but whose parents were too busy. We hope there isn't any confusion. Imagine the potential havoc of all those latchkey kids calling beer people for a soothing morality tale.

by Angela Natividad    Mar- 9-07    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Good, Magazine, Outdoor



No Means Yes, Roofies are Sexy, Says Cesare Paciotti

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Jetpacks points us to this ad for Cesare Paciotti.

A date rape scenario definitely showcases the dress at a good angle. We often wonder how well our clothes look on us as we lie across the bathroom floor next to a pool of vomit that missed the loo. Next print ad, Cesare Paciotti?

by Angela Natividad    Mar- 8-07    
Topic: Brands, Magazine, Racy



McDonald's Cures Oversleeping With Video Contest

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Aside from maybe the coffee, we can't really think of a reason why a visit to McDonald's is necessarily an activity that will help you wake up and face the day. Well, other then the fact you have to actually be awake to go to a McDonald's but let's not get bogged down in the details. One would assume a nice big, greasy, artery-clogging McDonald's breakfast would make you sleepy and want to crawl back into bed or, more likely, barf but McDonald's, with it's Moroch Partners-created Morning Impaired site thinks otherwise.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 8-07    
Topic: Brands, Online, Video



GAP Gets Branding Advice

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Adrants reader Chris Peterson, a principal at entertainment company Ballad Enterprises and former strategic planner for Disney, thinks he has the answers to the GAP's branding woes and offers some free advice, writing, "There's a simple solution to fixing Gap, the brand. Get rid of the celebrities and start investing in the emotional meaning of the word Gap itself. The brand name has gotten lost in the celebrity shuffle.

The feelings that rub off on the word Gap need to come from a genuine place, not from a never ending parade of celebrities. The core values of the brand need to be defined in a personal and intimate way that plays off the word itself.

Example: A teenage boy and a girl are sitting on a bench with a "gap" between them. Neither one has the courage to start a conversation, but clearly they are enamored with each other. Suddenly a no name street musician sits down between them and starts belting out a soulful ballad. Then he walks away. The two kids immediately start talking to each other.

Gap logo...Tagline: Get Together.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 8-07    
Topic: Brands



Dell Copies Best Buy's Geek Squad With Nerd Buddy

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When there's computer difficulties at home, sometimes there's simply no replacement for an actual human skilled in the ways of kicking the crap out of your computer until it works again. Big box retailer Best Buy created its Geek Squad, a cadre of computer techs that travel to people's homes in a customized VW Beetle. Others have followed suit. Now, Dell, without physical retail locations or a human geek squad to assist its customers in need of unsnarling nasty computer bugs, has launched Nerd Buddy. Well, they've actually launched DellConnect by humorously illustrating why it's really not so convenient to have a geek-like Nerd Buddy follow you around all the time to make sure your computer isn't causing you to use it as a projectile out of frustration.

Aside from the fact Best Buy's Geek Squad and other similar services are nothing like the Nerd Buddy Dell so joyously ribs, the computer maker explains its virtual tech support solution, DellConnect is better than having a human geek follow you around. It's all presented in one of those goofy, docu-style videos complete with fake scientists in white lab coats.

by Steve Hall    Mar- 7-07    
Topic: Brands, Good, Video



Internet Walk. What?

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Remember that weird You are Music thing Nokia did, the thing with the bodysuit guy and the rapper? To push the N800 internet tablet, Sweden's FarFar brings us more weird, somewhat off-putting work with The Internet Walk, which plays on the notion of taking the internet to places it's never been.

Sounds like a good idea in theory but we don't get this at all. And now we can't get the annoyingly lyrical "Come on" out of our heads.

by Angela Natividad    Mar- 6-07    
Topic: Brands, Online, Promotions, Strange



GMC Offers Free Valet Parking to Southern Shoppers, Forgets North

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With help from Dalla-based AdverTickets, GMC is offering free valet parking to shoppers in eight cities as part of a promotion for the car maker's new Acadia SUVation wagon crossover vehicle. shoppers in LA. Miami, Orlando, Phoenix, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco and Tampa will be given tickets good for free valet parking. Also part of the promotion are Boom-Ads, wraps that cover the gates drivers who choose not to valet park must pass through to get into parking structures.

We think it's all well and good to help a struggling shopper out but hello? It's winter up here in the Northern half! We could certainly use the luxury of valet parking far more than all those warm staters who should enjoy walking from their car to the mall whereas those of us up here have to endure frostbite weather and the pummeling of winter winds. Something's wrong here.

by Steve Hall    Mar- 6-07    
Topic: Brands, Good, Outdoor, Point of Purchase, Specialty



Copyranter Continues Conversation With Ketel One

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Copyranter began an open dialog with Ketel One vodka in mid-2006 using the company's all-type/lots of white space print ads to do so. Copyranter's latest conversation responds to the distiller's latest headline, "Dear Ketel One Drinker, Not everyone likes Ketel One. Then again, not everyone's tried it" with "Dear Ketel One Maker, Not everyone hates your ads. Then again, not everyone's seen them." You've at least got to hand it to Ketel One for hanging on to the campaign for a while. If for nothing more than to give Copyranter more opportunities to continue the conversation.

by Steve Hall    Mar- 6-07    
Topic: Brands, Magazine, Social, Strange



Lays Joins HomeTeam in Homemaking Fantasy

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In a liaison that appears strange at first glance, Lay's potato chips joins nationally syndicated series HomeTeam in fueling the fantasies of starry-eyed virgin homeowners. Lays.com will feature moments of joy from past and upcoming episodes. The show is hosted by former Apprentice star Troy McClain.

A good if unlikely liaison. We're pretty sure that the consumption of chips on a couch of one's own is a fantasy every American has when constructing that imaginary white picket fence.

by Angela Natividad    Mar- 6-07    
Topic: Brands, Online, Television



Gore Personed, Revlon Shifts, Anti-Ads Add Ads, Oprah Tops Mag List

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- MEDIA magazine names Al Gore Person of the Year. Huh?

- Without a review, Revlon has moved it $200 million from Carat to Initiative. Well, that's gotta suck for Carat.

- Yet another anti-advertising group fights the proliferation of outdoor advertising. The problem with all these groups though is that they use the same techniques all other advertisers do which simply adds even more to the already ridiculously cacophonous level of marketing litter.

- The Oprah Magazine tops this year's AdWeek Magazine 2007 Hot List. Rounding out the top ten are Real Simple, US, More, Teen Vogue, Glamour, Allure, Wired, Martha Stewart Living and The Economist.

by Steve Hall    Mar- 5-07    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Magazine








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