Backpedaling from one of the biggest marketing gaffs in recent history, Gap, following overwhelming public pressure, has, unsurprisingly, announced it will box it's new logo and return to the original design. Announced last week, the new logo, designed by Laird & Partners, was roundly mocked by the design community, especially when the brand asked designers to "crowdsource" new ideas (un-related to the new logo the brand insists) for free.
A statement on the brand's Facebook page now reads, "Ok. We've heard loud and clear that you don't like the new logo. We've learned a lot from the feedback. We only want what's best for the brand and our customers. So instead of crowdsourcing, we're bringing back the Blue Box tonight."
Didn't you know? What? You didn't? Well let us let you in on a little secret. If you want to have hot passionate sex with that hunk you've been drooling over, ladies, all you have to do is slap on some Gucci Guilty and the man of your dreams will miraculous appear and ravage you to completion.
Actually, that's a lie. Why? Because it was in a commercial. No. In the real world, men don't need much motivation at all when it comes to that particular activity. You barely have to smile and the guy already wants to hop on. But this is Gucci we're taking about so that line of thinking is a bit crass here.
In an examination of how social media is dramatically changing the way people consume media and how marketers use (or should) use it, iCrossing Social Media Director Alisa Leonard writes, "the rise of social media is more than simply the rise of a new 'channel' opportunity. It has signaled the rise of a new, complex consumer modality, generating altogether new behaviors and communicative norms in general.
Continuing, she writes, "We, as consumers, seem to be on the brink of a kind of techno-cognitive nomadism, a world in which communication output is evermore ubiquitous, ambient and continuous --where conversation and activity, from tweets to Likes and Shares, are not only visible pieces of meta-data, but forms of content in their own right. The link between content, identity and activity is tightening, fast. We continue to witness the evolution of content and its consumption as a direct corollary to the evolution of the social web itself."
This contributed article comes to us from Philippe Guegan, VP Strategy & Engagement at Big Fuel Communications, a full-service marketing and communications company based in New York. Philippe discusses how social media is moving from a cool, new idea to a practice that requires mainstream integration and implementation.
This season, social is the new black. Fashion victim, fashionista: these are words not easily applied to me. However, I have learned one valuable lesson over the years by observing an industry that's always on the lookout for the next big thing: if you wait long enough, past trends and patterns will make a comeback.
This is exactly to the case with social media right now. As all things social start to mature, the same evolution that took place in the digital marketing industry only a few years ago is emerging: social is fast becoming less about experimentation, and more about regular production. In fact, production is the key word in many ways, which I'll come back to a bit later.
As you may have heard, Eric Proulx made a wonderful movie called Lemonade: The Movie. I had the pleasure of being one of 16 people featured in the film which told the stories of people who had been laid off, the trials and tribulations they went through and the new directions and successes they found.
Well, along comes The Apprentice. This year, the show is going back to its roots. Leaving behind the celebrity idiocy, the show will, again, focus on unknowns who were laid off during the recession and are currently trying to make a go of it. The promotional clip for this year's show is eerily similar to Lemonade: The Movie.
Antonio Federici ice cream, which had its pregnant nun ad banned by the UK's Advertising Standards authority for making a mockery of Roman Catholic beliefs isn't taking the ban laying down. The company plans to continue with the same theme and, in addition, make a point of targeting Pope Benedict with the campaign during his four day visit to the UK which begins today.
An Antonio Federici spokeswoman said, "We intend to defy the ASA's ban and will publish another ad from the series before the Pope's visit later this week. We are also in the process of securing billboards close to and along the planned route of the Pope's cavalcade around Westminster Cathedral."
The ad carries the tagline, "Immaculately Conceived ... Ice cream is our religion."
In a PSA from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine we see a dean man laying on a gurney with his grieving wife at his side. As the camera pans down his body, we see the man is holding a half-eaten hamburger. As the camera pans to his feet, we see the Golden Arches drawn over his cold feet and we hear a voice over tells us all the bad things a non-vegetarian diet can do to us.
The message is clear. McDonald's is killing us. Of course that's totally untrue. Much like the pro-gun camp would say, food doesn't kill people, people who put the wrong kind or too much of it in their mouth do. Obesity and all that comes with eating bad food isn't caused by a marketing campaign. It's caused by shoving the wrong food in one's mouth.
We were, apparently, wrong before and we could be wrong again. Many of you may have heard of a character named Cornelius Trunchpole who's been making the rounds in advertising's social media scene. The "elderly gentleman" can be seen on Facebook, his blog and on Twitter spouting witticisms from the good 'ol days of advertising.
In an exclusive interview with Adrants, Trunchpole said of his career in advertising, "On leaving the Army I went straight to work at the London ad agency Wilson Bagley, where I quickly rose to the rank of Creative Director, writing copy for such accounts as Coleman's mustard, Heinz, and Monster Munch crisps. Following a chance meeting in a London phone box I was then offered a job at the McCann Advertising agency in America, where within weeks of joining I had facilitated the companies merger with the Erickson agency (an achievement I received not even a word of thanks for). At this point I was still only 14 years old."
Over the weekend, 9/11 memorials were held across the nation. In New York, one such memorial was held at at City Hall Park. Organized by inventors Steven Brandstetter and James Devlin of J&S Gaming, the event featured the pair's Lottery Ball Characters which were turned into life sized costumes to represent the likeness of a police officer and a fireman.
According to the press release, the purpose of the rally was to "pay tribute to the men and women who put their lives on the line on a daily basis to protect and serve our communities." Brandsetter and Devlin put the rally together with the consent of retired NYPD police officer Stan Jefferson who was reportedly forced into retirement because of an illness he contracted while working at Ground Zero.
Apparently, the government isn't doing all it can do and the rally aimed to bring that to the attention of the public.
The campaign also brought something else to light. The sad fact some people are so lacking in the common sense department, they have no idea when something grotesquely oversteps the line of acceptability. To diminish the lives of those lost during 9/11 to a couple of stupid lottery characters - as if the event were sponsored by Tony the Tiger or something - is deplorable, inexcusable and plain idiotic.
That is all.
Breasts. If any alien race landed here on earth and witnessed our obsession with breasts, all they'd have to do to take over our world would be to morph into an army on bikini-clad women sporting boobs the size of cantaloupes to peacefully subdue us.
Perhaps that's why marketers have leveraged that very same obsession to sell stuff. The bigger the boob, the bigger the sell. So it's not surprising that when breasts (or breast-related items) are the "product" itself, boobs of all shapes, sizes, color and jiggle factor are trotted out. Just look at any breast cancer campaign. Tracy Clark-Flory did and she didn't like what she saw. Not one bit.