The New York Daily News has been informed Madonna was paid $8 million by Motorola for appearing in an ad for the company's new Rokr phone. For the $8 million, which Motorola paid because it was rumored Motorola was fearful Madonna would back out, the star spent ten hours filming the ad last week in London. That's a pretty good hourly rate.
Just one day after winning the $400 million Volkswagen account, Crispin Porter + Bogusky has yanked the $45 million Spite account away from Ogilvy & Mather. Here's the funny part yet a very common occurrence when accounts shift. Upon attempting to get comment on the move, Ad Week reports, "Ogilvy referred calls to the client. CP+B executives were unavailable. A Coke representative declined comment." Another circle jerk. What a surprise. You'd think, at least someone would be jumping for joy and willing to talk about $45 million. We just don't understand all this corporate, pass-the-buck, no backbone, media-shy, no comment stance in which grown up professionals insist upon engaging. Alex Bogusky and Coke should be running around exclaiming, "We are fucking stoked!"
As part of its flavored chicken Flavor Station promotion, KFC has launched ChooseYourSauce, a site that let's people choose there own adventure, After watching a clip of a couple guys in an office cubicle, three choices are presented at the end of the clip that lead to different story lines. The choices, of course, relate to KFC's new offering which lets customers choose from three lunch items - chicken strips, popcorn chicken and chicken wings - then choose one of three sauces - fiery buffalo, honey barbecue and sweet and spicy. The chicken is then served slathered with the chosen sauce. Foote Cone & Belding created the site and handles the rest of the $35 million campaign.
In the Wow category, VW has taken its $345 million creative business away from Arnold, the car makers agency for ten years, and handed it to golden boy agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky. In a statement, VW EVP Len Hunt said, "Volkswagen needs to take bold steps to turn this business around in the U.S. and Canada. "We're reviewing all aspects of our operations, and with the addition of CP+B on our team we'll now be equipped to maximize our marketing efforts. U.S. and Canadian consumers have always had a special relationship with this brand and today they want more from it—more interesting products which we now have and more captivating communications which CP+B will help develop."
Following a post to the WhereSpot discussion group and a story here on Adrants, Coke has called off its lawyers, who had threatened photographer Paul Papanek with legal action over a couple of spec spots he had created, and said it's fine the spots remain in existence as long as Papanek disclaims them as unaffiliated with Coke. It all seems very logical. A creative is allowed to express himself. A brand gets additional exposure without spending a cent. Everyone's happy. Except the lawyers. After three threatening letters, Coke's legal army was, apparently, called off and sent back to the dungeon to dream up other methods of charging Coke a fortune just to type up a few simple letter.
Writing in the WheresSpot discussion group, Papanek gleefully reports Coke representative Ms. Perlstein told him "everyone at Coke is talking about it" and even the brand managers are checking the spots out. Oh, and the lawyers? They're not all bad. They contacted Papanek directly and had amicable conversations.
Next time, perhaps, Coke will realize the value of consumer created media and leave well enough alone. Or, at least, approach the situation with less legal stiffness. Unless of course the work harms the brand which, clearly, Papanek's work did not.
Growing up, our house was always full of LEGOS. Boxes and boxes of LEGOS. There were elaborate trucks made out of LEGOS; strange flying machines; entire cities constructed out of LEGOS. Friends would come over and spend hours playing with LEGOS. Grandparents, aunts ans uncles would marvel at the creations. It was fun. It kept us out of Mom's hair. As entertaining as this was, we never knew that every time we uttered the word LEGOS, we were pissing off a member of the LEGO brand management police. That's right. LEGO has no 'S.' It's just plain LEGO. Though, since time began, it seems kids the world over have been abusing the LEGO brand by calling them LEGOS. We know of no one who "plays with LEGO." Everyone "plays with LEGOS," of course.
Clearly the result of waring factions caught up in weeks of pompous, self-important, white-boarded, conference room mission/vision/essence/position marketing pontification, Sprint, today, launched its new look incorporating its recent acquisition of Nextel. The new logo features the word "Sprint" along with an innocuous graphic and the words, "Together with Nextel." Huh? Which company is this? Together with who? Sprint? Nextel? Help. We are very confused. And we actually know what's going on. Pity the poor consumer who has to wade through this morass of compromise. Please let this be very temporary.
To persuade hipster fools to spend $200 on a pair of jeans, Levi's has enlisted the help of Andy Warhol, the granddaddy of all things hip. Called "Warhol Factory X Levi's," the jeans are priced between $150 and $250 and will be available next Spring.
General Motors has signed a deal with computer maker Itronix to manufacture a Hummer-branded laptop, ruggedly designed for those who work outside or just plain love all things Hummer. Priced at $2,988, the laptop isn't cheap but it is said to survive repeated 30 inch test drops and remain functional.
Bucky Turco reports Scion's latest hip hop promotion, NEXT UP, an unsigned emcee search, has recently faced backlash from the very community it was trying to reach. The car company disqualified an emcee because of his politically charged lyrics about President Bush and the war. The track, entitled Black Gold, is an obvious reference to oil and the war.
The rap artist, Bavu Blakes, was willing to alter his lyrics a bit so he could advance to the next round of the competition and potentially win a $50,000 marketing deal, but Inform Ventures, the marketing company handling the promotion for Scion, said he was disqualified because his lyrics were too political.In fairness to Scion, Bavu entered the "underground" category rather than the "political" category but many still believe Bavu was censored.