Perhaps anticipating the needs to distance itself from its own $32 million tax mistake, tax preparation firm H & R Block, according to AdWeek, will this week brief five agencies on its $100 million account. In the loop will be Deutsch/LA, Arnold, DDB/Chicago, Campbell Mithun and Mullen. Currently, most H & R Block work is handled by Campbell Mithun. Played properly, there's a great inside joke to be leveraged in future campaigns.
If you can't get publicity with a great product, create a crappy one and get lots of publicity. This has been Jones Soda's tactic for quite some time. Bt creating flavors such as Brussel Sprout, Broccoli Casserole and Turkey soda, Jones Soda found itself featured on Good Morning America and Jay Leno. Jones Soda Founder Peter Van Stolk thinks he has the key to publicity saying, "I've been in business 10 years and launched 80 flavors, and none of the great-tasting ones ever got on Jay Leno." While it may be stunt marketing, it's paid off handsomely with revenue jumping 18 percent to $24.7 million in the first nine months of 2005. Perhaps Hanes should sell underwear with celebrity skid marks. That's get them on Stern and the likes of Fark in no time.
We chose not to make a big deal about the DVR-friendly KFC spot that encourage viewers to replay the commercial to locate a special code word that can be used to get a $1 off coupon for its Buffalo Snacker sandwich because, well, we don't see what the big deal is. We're guessing all the advance publicity KFC is generating for the spot which debuts tonight isn't to force viewers to rewind to view the code but because the spot sucks and they are doing anything they can to get people to view it. Don't bother. AdFreak already did the viewing for you at the KFC site and found the secret code word to be, surprise, "Buffalo." If you really really absolutely must have this deep fried nightmare of a sandwich, forget the spot and just enter the code at the site.
Ryan Anderson over at Ads That Suck points to a couple stories that report Labatt brand Alexander Keith's spokesman, Robert Smith, is facing child pornography charges after a Toronto undercover police operation found images of "prepubescent children engaged in sexual activity" on Smith's computer according to Toronto Police Constable Scott Purchase. Oops. Labatt has pulled the long running campaign
Bucky Turco reports on a collaborative effort between graphic artist WK and Kobe Bryant that resulted in a dramatic mural for Nike's LA Nike Gallery. Check out all the work at the Wooster Collective.
There's consumer-generated brand love and then there's consumer-generated brand hate. Web hunter Bucky Turco sent us this funny example of the latter in which the Scion is lambasted for it's boxiness and labeled a retarded mini van that plopped out of some fat guy's ass. Give it a watch here. Click Watch This Movie.
Advertising For Peanuts points us to yet another creepy Burger King commercial in which the King convinces is to sample his meat in a not so G rated manner. Crispin, if they are behind this as this is a UK spot, has truly taken the Burger King brand to new heights though we wonder if these height aren't moving them into the Hooters category of restaurant chain.
Boing Boing points to an act of lunacy on the part of Miller Brewing which hunted down a person who used a throwaway email address to enter a contest the brewer was hosting so she could avoid future marketing messages from Miller. Apparently, Miller didn't like being tricked, found the user presumably through some sort of IP tracking and sent her this email which read, in part, "We have performed an electronic change of address to update our records so that we can continue to send you special offers, promotions and announcements via email." We'd like to speak with the person at Miller who actually wrote and/or approved this to se just what it's like to be so disrespectful to one's customer.
UPDATE: Ad-Verse takes a detailed look at this, offers more details on how Miller supposedly does this, why they do it and why he calls this crap sociopathic marketing.
Apparently, Brooke Burke didn't have a non compete clause in her agreement with Burger King and Crispin Porter + Bogusky as indicated by these images of her entering and leaving a McDonald's.
Or, according to a Buzznet editor, these images may simply be a twisted continuation of the Burger King Brooke Burke photo viral. The editor tells us, "The 'boink' galleries where the Brooke Burke pics are posted seem to be owned by someone who is 'in the industry' PR-wise. The person/company behind 'boink' tends to have a lot of pics that end up being widely available but they really seem to have them first. There's a couple other galleries like 'boink' at buzznet that could be the same person but are posting promotional photos of bands, etc." We'll keep you updated.
Advertising for Peanuts points to this inventive and conceptually brilliant Australian commercial for McDonald's in which the the true meaning of the "inner child" is explored.