As Sunday approaches I sit here with mixed emotions about Super Bowl advertising. Should I care because it's my job? Should I just enjoy the game like the rest of the world and boycott the lame ass idiocy that attempts to pass as advertising? Why can't I get excited this year?
Perhaps it's that I've written about so many Super Bowl ads over the past eight years, I simply can't get excited about seeing the same old stupidity over and over again. Go Daddy? Oh please. Another "men are idiots" beer ad? Gag. The eTrade babies? Make it stop!
Perhaps it's that I've heard everything there is to hear and viewed everything there is to view before the ads ever hit TV. There used to be an anticipation for something NO ONE could EVAR see until it appeared during the game. No longer. The ads are everywhere. And not just for journalists and bloggers. Many marketers toss there stuff up on YouTube well in advance of the game. So all that goes on inside my head during the game is a running commentary, "Yup, seen that. Predictable. Seriously? Yup, knew that was coming. Yup, that's as stupid as I thought it would be. Danica Patrick. Yawn. Guy throws a phone across a locker room. Check. Beer babes wrestling. Oh wait, that was pretty good! The Clydesdales. OK, not bad. Man sneaks beer into party under giant cheese wheel. Oh for fuck's sake. Talking babies. Talking animals. Monkeys. Can't wait until this fucking game is over so I can go back to watching some decent programming with ads that don't try so hard they shoot themselves in the foot before they end up in the can."
Perhaps it's laziness. Why go to the effort of blogging/tweeting/tagging/commenting/uploading ads when everyone else is doing the same thing. We used to care what Bob Garfield said. Does anyone give a shit any longer? Does anyone give a shit what what I have to say? And, no, I'm not equating myself to Bob Garfield. But does anyone really care what I have to say about the ads? Why is my opinion any more important than anyone else's?
Perhaps it's scheduling difficulties. I'll be stuck at a conference Monday after game day. While the rest of the world is blogging and bitching about the ads, I'll be slinging some mindlessly irrelevant blather on a panel about social media. And who really gives a shit about that? Super Bowl ad commentary or social media platitudes. It's like choosing between getting my left eye poked out or my right.
Maybe it's because the world has become so politically correct, the chance of me seeing anything interesting is about as likely as my chance of ever writing for Advertising Age. Giant breasted women in bikinis mud wrestling? Those days are gone. A gerbil shooting out of a cannon? Nope. A hot girl that says "throw it to me. I'm gonna be wide open?" Too offensive. Suicidal robots? Never. A Snickers kiss? Not a chance. A Salesgenie ad featuring Asians and Indians? You know the answer to that one. In our quest to become sensitive to everything, we have become a risk-averse, spineless, humorless nation afraid of everything.
OK, whatever. Follow me @adrants or @stevehall. I'm sure I'll have something ridiculously irrelevant to say about the ads during the game. And I'll be drinking. So it could be good.
Make the Logo Bigger's Bill Green takes a long look at that "gun reference" Nike ad featuring Kobe Bryant and Lebron James. Some are offended Nike would allow such a reference. Some, such as Lebron (in a hilarious contradiction), defend the ad claiming the notion it's a gun reference is ridiculous. Some, like us, don't give a shit and think people should move on and not read so much into stuff. Not you, Bill. All those other conspiracy theorists and cause group kooks.
Of course NBA players bringing their guns into the locker room isn't so smart either.
But seriously, give it a rest. Move on. There's nothing to see here. Go live your life and appreciate it. Don't waste it whining about advertising. Oh wait...
So now that CBS has OK'd the Tim Tebow anti-abortion ad, gay dating site ManCrunch wants in on the action. It's submitted a commercial to CBS for approval even though CBS, though they told Pop Tarts otherwise, claims to be sold out. Yes, it's the usual publicity stunt GoDaddy knows well and subjects us to every year.
In the ManCrunch ad, two men watch football then reach for a bowl of chips at that same time. Their hands brush against one another and, well, they go at it much to the surprise of another man next to them. Yes, that's pretty racy for the supposedly good 'ol family fun-focused Super Bowl but is it any more racy than other gay-themed programming on CBS?
Seems the two ads would balance each other out nicely. One touts a stereotypical conservative stance and the other a stereotypically liberal one. Come on, CBS! Let the battle of the viewpoints begin!
The ad is funny but only in a "I'm a straight guy that's OK with gay guys but don't throw it in my face" sort of way. Though funny, it's not the sort of ad that's going to go over well with actual gay men.
Oh how persnickety people can get online. Once again it's a cause group and once again it's "mommy bloggers." Today PETA mass-tweeted "Never-b4-seen photos that will convince parents never 2 take their kids 2 the circus: http://bit.ly/7ha9NL" to over 150 Twitter users according to Allie Sullivan who watched the drama unfold this morning. The tweet linked to a site on which photos depicted the training of baby elephants for Ringling Bros. Circus
Without surprise, the mass tweet was met with a bit of vitriol such as "@officialpeta fuck you I hate PETA and always have" from @JessicaGottlieb. But it was also met with what, in the first place, PETA should have, if you're a social media believer, been going for: a conversation. Luckily, one did start between the cause group and Lucretia Pruitt. And by all accounts it ended pleasantly.
What is is with women in showers these days? Burger King in the UK has launched Singing in the Shower, "the world's first guilt free showercam." Created by Cow and Pancentric Digital, visitors can "watch our shower babe shake her bits to the hits at 9:30 every morning." And they can vote for the outfit she will wear and the song she will sing the next day.
Targeting men (over 18...the site is age-protected) to get them to buy breakfast, the site also offers the chance to win a date with the shower babe who, presumably, could shake her bits in private for the winner. That or slap the boy silly for even thinking such degrading thoughts.
So Method ran a humorous commercial, called Shiny Suds, showing scrubbing bubbles taunting a naked woman in the shower. After complaints from people who actually likened the spot to condoning rape (we kid you not), Method pulled the commercial. Words fail at this point but we'll give it a shot:
1. Cause groups and feminist blogging should be outlawed.
2. Everyone with a stick up their ass over this should promptly shove it all the way through until it pops out the top of their head. Hopefully they'll die and allow the rest of us to "use the loofa" without feeling like we're being gang raped in the shower. (Where the hell do people come up with this crap?)
3. Brands should grow a pair and proudly lift their middle finger when confronted by a gaggle of idiots who have nothing better to do than to suck the last drop of humor out of life.
4. Just for fun, Dow should hire an army of men in Scrubbing Bubbles costumes, send them to BlogHer (and the rest of the female conference circuit) and have them ejaculate foamy white stuff all over attendees. That ought to get some panties in a bunch.
5. Um... Nope. Got nothing left. Feel free to add your own.
Ever wish you could take something back? I do.
The tidal wave of commentary on this over the last few days has certainly given me a taste of my own medicine and reminded me of a couple of things:
#1 - When you're wrong admit it.
#2 - When you hurt someone's feelings say you're sorry.
I was wrong, and I'm sorry.
"The campaign features three 30-second television spots that use the element of surprise to build excitement for the new Minnesota Millionaire Raffle game Each spot features a game-show-like host who wheels a large raffle drum into busy locales where unsuspecting patrons are encouraged to play an instant raffle. The spots are built on genuine reactions as people go from shocked and reluctant to actively participating and cheering"
Now that's some well-written PR copy. And we didn't have to go digging through a collection of attachments or ridiculously worded releases to find the nugget of information. Thank you, Colle+McVoy.
Now on to the campaign. Generally, we're not a fan of marketing stunts that involve random appearances in unlikely places. After all, if we're shopping, we're shopping. If we're eating, we're eating. Then again, you can't do stunt marketing (or most any kind for that matter...yes, we love you inbound marketing) without a little bit of interruption. So we can't complain much about this campaign.
The campaign also includes print, radio, outdoor, transit and mall. You can view the three spots here, here and here.
At the risk of igniting yet another firestorm over gun control, is it worth pointing to an Iver Johnson Revolvers ad that ran in 1913 which claimed its guns will "shoot straight and kill" while at the same time claiming 'accidental discharge impossible"? Of course it is. What better way to get your brain working on a Post-Thanksgiving Monday?
So this ad, which shows a little girl in bed holding a gun has a quote which reads, "Papa says it won't hurt us." By today's standard's the ad would be freakishly out of place. However - and please don't lump us in the pro-gun category becasue we are clearly not - properly cared for and stored guns don't kill people. Carelessly and foolishly handled guns do.
So by now you've seen the video of Microsoft Store employees breaking into "spontaneous" dance in their new Mission Viejo store, right? If not, watch it here and then come back.
OK? Was that the most horrifically forced thing you've ever witnessed? Not that this is news or anything. After all, everything Microsoft does is forced, unnatural and desperate. What's news is the fact the video has been labeled a viral stunt.
Back in the day we'd all watch in awe "viral videos" which showed people doing seemingly unbelievable stunts that would escape the abilities of normal human beings. For a few seconds, we actually believed there were people out there that could do such amazing things as catch sunglasses on their face, jump over moving cars or make amazing basketball shots.
Now, we scoff at the idiocy of brands who shill this shit. Yet, we still watch. We are still amazed. It's like a Saw movie. We don't want to watch but we can't turn away as people are slowly and gruesomely mutilated in new and different ways.
So Samsung is out with a couple a videos to pimp their involvement with the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. Purportedly, they were shot by the brand's Mobile Explorers. In one, a skater drills herself into the ice and, in another, a hockey player scores a goal with a 40 pound curling rock.
Both are mildly amusing. Both will get views. Both will not sell any Samsung phones.