HBO's 'Big Love' Campaign Hits Newspaper Wedding Pages

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CitySpecific points out an ad for HBO's polygamy-themed Big Love placed in the New York Times wedding announcement section. The ad shows Big Love star Bill Paxton in three separate wedding announcements with his three brides played by Jeanne Tripplehorn, Chloe Sevigny and Ginnifer Goodwin. CitySpecific questions the Times acceptance of this ad but we think it's just another inevitable sign of things to come.

by Steve Hall    Mar-12-06    
Topic: Cable, Good, Newspaper, Opinion



Idiot NBC Execs Remove YouTube Content Then Release Themselves

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Completely misunderstanding current culture, NBC, after forcing YouTube to remove several Saturday Night Live clips, has re-released on NBC.com the very same clips it said should not have been freely distributed. Explaining the twisted brilliance of the move, NBC VP of Interactive Stephen Andrade said, "We were concerned about building their corporation instead of ours since it's our video. We would like to make it as easy for people to share as we can, so we're trying to provide as many tools as we can to do that." Gee, if we were NBC.com, we'd be more than happy for YouTube and everyone else to suffer the bandwidth and infrastructure costs to freely publicize our content.

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by Steve Hall    Mar-10-06    
Topic: Bad, Online, Opinion, Strange, Television



Nationwide Brings More Consumer-Generated Times Square Action

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Following Time Magazine's lead, Nationwide Insurance is doing the consumer-generated Times Square billboard thing. Visitors to the Life Comes At You Fast site can submit a "moment" that somehow relates to the whole Life Comes At You Fast thing and, if accepted, it will appear on Natonwide's Time Square billboard. TM Advertising did the work.

We suppose there's a vanity play here and we're sure we're jaded by years of this stuff but...oh screw it...we were going to complain but whet the hell. People love to see their own faces in public places. We're just not the stand behind the GMA camera and wave like an idiot sort of guy.

by Steve Hall    Mar-10-06    
Topic: Consumer Created, Online, Opinion, Outdoor



Jack Trout Lends Perspective to Word of Mouth

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Writing in Forbes, the legendary Jack Trout pokes a hole in the word of mouth bubble claiming its nothing new and in early days basically accomplished the same thing by tapping "early adapters" with traditional marketing to get them to talk up a product. He riffs on both the positives and the negatives of the current flavor of word of mouth and questions the relinquishing of control marketers give up if they plan to enter the word of mouth space writing, "If I go to all this trouble developing a positioning strategy for my product, I want to see that message delivered. Buzz can get your name mentioned but you can't depend on much else." Certainly the current iteration isn't completely about giving up control as it's filled with tactics and strategies to control, guide, enable and direct the seemingly uncontrollable but, Trout does have a point.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 9-06    
Topic: Consumer Created, Opinion, Viral, Word of Mouth



Obesity Is Not Marketers' Fault

Dan Jaffe over at the ANA's Regulatory Rumblings blog makes a concise argument, as we have before but with far fewer facts, that lays blame for obesity not on the action of marketers and advertisers b ut squarely on the shoulders of lazy-ass kids, their parents that let them sit on their ass all day long playing video games and schools which have drastically cut back on physical education.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 6-06    
Topic: Opinion, Research, Trends and Culture



Blank Banners Celebrate Clean Up Australia Day, Online Clean Up Needed

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We wish FastClick/ValueClick, Casale Media and all other ad networks and their advertisers would take note of a recent ad campaign by Australian agency NetX for Virgin's sponsorship of Clean Up Australia Day which placed blank ad banners all over Australia's Yahoo home page this past Saturday. The ads remained blank unless the mouse was rolled over them which then revealed the messaging you can view here.

Please. PLEASE ad networks and cheesy advertisers, is there really any need at all to place vibrating banners and pop unders which defy blockers? Do you care about consumer sentiment? Your brand? Have you no pride in the industry you represent? Or is it that you don't give a shit and you'll take money from anyone who has it? I thought so.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 6-06    
Topic: Online, Opinion



Oscar Ads Not So Bad, 'Crash' Wins

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I didn't watch the entire broadcast of The Oscars but I will tell you this: many of the ads during the broadcast were, far and away, superior to those that aired during the Super Bowl. Miller ran an ad that actually treated beer drinkers as intelligent people. American Express (say what you will about celebrity selling out to that campaign) created an amazing and very quirky commercial featuring M. Night Shamalan. It was brilliant. The ad is currently viewable on the My Life My Card site.

Aside from the ads, the presentation of the honorary Oscar to Robert Altman by Meryl Streep and Lily Tomlin was one of the best presentations in Oscar history. The performance put teleprompters and most other actors to shame.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 6-06    
Topic: Opinion, Television



Wake Up And Smell Your Marketing

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Everyone who works in marketing and any business touching it must read this article. On CBSNews.com, Dick Meyer wrote an editorial hammering home points we've touched on here before such as the portrayal of men as idiots in advertising, the hyper-political correctness foisted upon the industry and society at large and the acceptance, what scholar Charles Murray relates to "ecumenical niceness," of kids dressing and behaving like thugs fueled by marketers and the entertainment industry elevating "thug culture" to culture at large. If that's a lot to digest, just read the article and think long and hard about what cultural imagery you mirror in your marketing. Don't cop out using the tired, "Oh we're just identifying with culture," and turn a blind eye to what you are perpetuating.

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by Steve Hall    Mar- 3-06    
Topic: Opinion, Trends and Culture



Marketers Could Learn From Microsoft iPod Re-Brand Spoof

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OK, we're a few days late in sharing this but a spoof video showing how Microsoft would brand the iPod is hilarious, true and indicative of the horrific packaging and marketing most brands puke out of their verbal diarrhea spewing mouths. Give it a watch then show it to everyone in your company and watch them squirm as they embarrassingly acknowledge, "Uh, yea, we did that once too."

by Steve Hall    Mar- 3-06    
Topic: Brands, Opinion, Spoofs



Lance Armstrong Puts His Face on American Century Investments

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While this site called Lance Face featuring Lance Armstrong's head popping onto the heads of other does deliver some important financial messages from American Century Investments, one has to wonder what the connection is between Lance and this effort. If there is one, it's definitely a mystery. Oh wait, American Century Investments Founder Jim Stowers, Jr. had cancer too. That's it. Makes perfect sense. Before all you survivors get pissy about this assessment, I've been where Lance has so I'm allowed to make cancer jokes.

by Steve Hall    Feb-27-06    
Topic: Online, Opinion










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