Virgin has launched a game on Heavy called exercise your muscle which calls for players to, as they name indicates, exercise their brain and music muscles to identify the 74 bands represented in an image on the game's page. There's a magnifying glass that can be rolled over the images for greater detail. Game prizes include an Alienware computer and one free year of music from VirginDigital, MP3 players with one year subscriptions to VirginDigital and one year subscriptions to Paste Magazine. Only true music aficionados need play. This one is a challenge and will keep you delightfully engaged for hours.
Why we haven't seen this before we do not know - or perhaps we did and filed it aways with the other 300 ads we see every day - but in July Danish director Nicolai Fuglsig, working for Fallon, filmed 250,000 multi-colored balls being dropped from huge cranes and shot out of cannons creating an avalanche of color streaming down the streets of San Francisco to promote Sony's bravia LCD TV. It's exquisitely beautiful. Thanks to Emily over at Eatmail, there's a behind the scenes video of the shoot.
Maine Root Beer has launched a site called Free Range Root Beer which pits itself against the big guys whom Maine Root Beer portrays as large, tasteless entities which add all kinds of filler to their product. The site contains humorous videos including one in which a stealth Free Range Root Beer team attempts to free cans of root beer which have been taken from the wild and placed in a corporate jail cell. There's a history of root beer, an area for kids, a photo contest for people to send in photos of Maine Root Beer placed in strange locations and a section where root beer lovers can express themselves through art therapy. Funny stuff.
Little Red Riding Hood is nowhere to be found in this spot for Halls but some dudes dressed up like pigs are worried a dude dressed like a wolf is going to huff and puff and blow their house down. It's a fairly amusing spot, especially since the guy playing the wolf looks like he can't stop cracking up while acting his part.
Here's a fun little time-waster from McDonald's. Pick a character, listen to the beat, whack a few numbers keys on your keyboard and, homey, you're breakdancin'. After practicing, visitors can log in and compare their dance move scores with others. That's it. Simple. No overbearing marketing crap. Just plain fun.
Adrants reader "Campaign Critic" had such insightful things to say about the recent Capitol One ad campaigns that we figured we'd just extend him a Guest Contributor title for the day. Campaign Critic Writes:
Let's just get to the point: Capital One's credit card advertising is annoying, hard to follow and stupid. It quite frankly breaks a few of the most basic rules about advertising any product, let alone something as complicated or, these days, downright scary as handling a credit card.
One: don't go so afar afield from the point at hand that you lose the hook on what your product really is. Capital One's ads for their credit cards do just this: they somehow equate credit card service charges with barbarians (they have tried others in this series, but they take this one bad step further). "Credit card charges are like barbarians attacking you every time you use them." (Not barbarians-credit cards.) Sure.
Flickr user Alane Golden has created a set of American Apparel ads he created as "a presentation for American Apparel. Call it my attempt landing a creative gig. Just something i have thrown together -to be reproduced nowhere, except perhaps as photos for my mates who posed!" No there's some serious consumer-created advertising dedication for you. The ads certainly mirror American Apparel's odd image but seem to steer clear of the already over-done kiddy-porn look which has gained the fashion brand fame and notoriety. Check out all the ads here.
Adverblog points to Banner Blog, an Australian weblog with the sole purpose of collecting and highlighting advertising banners created by Australian marketers. It was created by Soap Creative's Ashley Ringrose and RMG Connect's Ashadi Hopper.
Almost a year after its release in Japan, Ad Age is featuring the McDonald's McHottie spot calling it "Ronald McDonald as you've never seen her before. Well, we have but we're glad Ad Age readers can now clue in to to what Ad Age cites as a trend "where the clothing worn by brand icons has become a fashion craze for Japanese school girls." What did Hilary Duff Say? That's so yesterday? Anyway, enjoy. We can't all be the first to discover a trend.
Other spots featured in this week's Ad Age TV Spots of the Week include Strawberry Frog's first work for Heineken which involves soccer and a lot of pigeons pooping in sync; a psycho-granny torments her son on a bed of nails to promote Universal Orlando's Halloween; a kind of stupid DDB-created Diet Pepsi spot in which a Pepsi machine is drafted as a New England Patriots player; a stirring, emotionally schmaltzy W&K-created spot for Miller High Life featuring the Moon Girl which Ad Age hated so, of course, we love; a BBDO-created iPod copy-cat spot for Cingular's new Rokr phone along with Madonna's telephone booth spot which very clearly but apparently not clearly enough for Chicago Tribune advertising columnist Lewis Lazare, explains how 100 songs can be crammed into the Rokr iTunes phone; and, finally, Kaplan Thaler created an IAG "most liked" Aflac Duck commercial in which the duck is hurled out of a hammock and into a neighboring pool.
Bucky Turco points to recent ad in L Magazine for the new Scion tC which promotes the cars ability to be customized with 30 available accessories. It's all about realizing one's inspirations and how the Scion tC makes that possible. However, there seem to boundaries to this realization as indicated by the disclaimer under the car's image which reads, "Vehicle featured is modified with non-Genuine Scion parts. Check with your local dealer as some accessories may void warranty, negatively impact vehicle performance, and may not be street legal."
Basically, Scion is telling buyers to go ahead and realize inspirations with their car as long as those inspirations live within the confines of Scion's available and, likely, highly priced options. Have fun, but not too much fun. It's a mixed message at best. Scion wants tuner wannabes to believe this car will be the answer to their dreams...as long as those dreams aren't too broad.