BlackBerry Personifies Personal Assistant with Weird Mascot

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We thought the Microsoft Butterfly was kind of nifty. The guy in the BlackBerry suit? Not so much. Giant plush costumes are so deceptive in their frozen state of cheer and rarely work outside Chuck E Cheese and college football fields, where they can be ridiculed at leisure by their own peers.

The requisite BlackBerry Mascot MySpace, as if we care.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-22-07    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Online, Promotions, Strange



German Ad Makes Words Spit Flames

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TJ "I Told You So" Swafford dropped a link to this interesting Audible.de ad in our Soflow group forum this morning. It's a cross-promotion with Eragon in which words flow out of some suspiciously iPod-looking earbuds and smash together, giving phoenix-like birth to a dragon.

The copy reads "Lebendige Worte" or "living words." We're not sure what the narrator is saying but dragon visuals and German-speak have a way of demanding one's strictest attention. We also like the gobbledygook mash-up of disconnected letters that turn into a fire-breathing monster. We shoot for the same type of effect when we throw together scathing diction.

Do we now want to watch Eragon? No, but that's because we were burned by Dragonheart, which ruined live-action dragon films for us forever.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-20-07    
Topic: Good, Online, Promotions



Your Miserable Life Provides Free Trip to Hawaii

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Adrants reader Jeff Wasiluk writes to tell us, "For most of us, day to day creativity only pays off in our minds. Sure there is the occasional award, standard company raise, maybe you even got a pat on the back. Good for you. But me, I'd rather have those little sparks of brilliance put my ass on the beach and a mai tai in my hand." Point taken. Which brings us to Rather be in Hawaii, a site from Starwood Hotels and Hawaiian Airlines, on which you can upload an image of an unpleasant moment of your life and have it paired with another image of vacation perfection. If you win the contest, you get a 5 night stay in Hawaii at a Starwood Hotel with airfare courtesy of Hawaiian Airlines. Go ahead. Upload your misery and go to Hawaii.

by Steve Hall    Feb-18-07    
Topic: Good, Online, Promotions



Hackistan Sets Eyes on Rival Fortify, Puts Hacker Universe at Stake

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Because we work on the internet, we like to entertain the fantasy that we're down with hackers or could have been hackers if we wanted to. This surmise is probably untrue as we haven't yet mastered the art of face-to-face l337-sp33k.

The spiffy rogues at Hanft Raboy and Partners put forth Discover Hackistan, a hacker community that scoffs at tired bourgeois trimmings like intellectual property and valorizes everyday net annoyances as seeds of revolution. Hackistan's one enemy is Fortify Software, the status quo superheroes characterized by fringey promos of this type from Hanft. We dig it.

Kitschy hacker country aside, Fortify shows it doesn't mind laughing at itself as sworn saviours of web uniformity. An "open letter" running in magazines includes an invitation for Hackistan citizens to "Join the world community and enjoy the benefits of globalization: soaring divorce rates, mindless entertainment and obesity." And if that's not compelling enough, consider the consequences of contributing to the free-for-all programming universe. Ooh, it gives us the shudders.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-16-07    
Topic: Good, Online, Promotions



NIN Builds Album Hype with Somber World Forecasts

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For album "Year Zero," Nine Inch Nails sets fans on a scavenger hunt with a series of webpages predicting the future. One example is Another Version of the Truth, a picture of a seemingly gentler America. When you click and drag your mouse, the pastoral picture reveals a desolate wasteland.

The first of the sites was discovered by fans who put together a set of highlighted words on a tour shirt. After that a spiral of other sites were found with roughly the same end-of-the-world, fascist/religious theme.

The effort was orchestrated by 42 Entertainment, the mad geniuses responsible for the Halo 2 campaign that sparked a dramatic nationwide search for a princess trapped in cyberspace.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Feb-16-07    
Topic: Agencies, Celebrity, Good, Guerilla, Online, Promotions, Viral



Mitsubishi Shoots for Gen-Y, Misses by Like 2 Years

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Swedish group Garbergs uses the "Cribs" angle to push the multi-faceted new line of models by Mitsubishi. At Not Everybody's Car we explore the garage of LA inhabitant Action Jackson who of course is ostentatiously hip-hop and has a showroom-caliber set-up of cars that flash and buzz when you mouse over them.

Hiding an interactive test-drive opportunity in the "Cribs" and hip-hop motifs is a clever way to generate brand buzz. Oh, except that it's not. Nobody buys this stuff anymore. "Cribs" is played-out and everybody tries to use the hip-hop angle. When we're bored, we don't sit around cyber test-driving cars with our bosom buddy Action Jackson. We play on Digg so we can talk shit about big companies that try to trick us, share WoW tips and swap really important news generally related to Apple.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-15-07    
Topic: Bad, Online, Promotions



Christina Ricci, Samuel L. Jackson Get New Heads, Movie Promoted

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Christina Ricci is hot. Christina Ricci is short denim cut offs is really hot. Christina Ricci in short denim cut offs, a tiny belly shirt and cowgirl boots is flaming hot. Christina Ricci in short denim cut offs, tiny belly shirt, cowgirl boots and chained like some kind of sex-slave by Samuel L. Jackson...now that's more than a guy can take! Can't you see, we're trying to get some work done around here? How can we with all this distraction?

Anyway, she's in a movie, coming out next month, called Black Snake Moan with Samuel L. Jackson. As part of the movie's promotion, there's a send-to-a-friend feature that lets you place your head on either Ricci's or Jackson' head for some silliness. We don't know why anyone would want to put their head over Christina's (although she does have an odd one), but, hey, this is online marketing and we do it because we can.

by Steve Hall    Feb-14-07    
Topic: Online, Promotions



Turbo Tax Does Tax Rap With Vanilla Ice

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Sort of along the lines of logic (or complete and purposeful lack there of) that resulted in Robert Goulet appearing in an Emerald Nuts Super Bowl commercial, Intuit has tapped Vanilla Ice (where the hell has he been all these years?) to front a Tax Wrap promotion for Turbo Tax. The promotion offers $25,000 to the person who makes the best homemade rap demo about taxes. So far, there aren't too many submissions and they are all embarrassingly horrible. We really don't know what to do with this one. Trash it for its use of a has-been to get all jiggy with one of the most financially serious periods in a person's life or praise it for its brilliant quirkiness and kitschy badness.

by Steve Hall    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Online, Promotions, Social, Strange, Video



Bottle Openers Take Heads Off to Show How Trains Do It

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According to CSX Transportation it's common for co-eds to wander drunkenly onto traintracks in dead of night and die grisly railroad deaths that often involve bright lights, loud noises, metal on flesh and decapitation.

(We've also heard this happens to koalas in the wild. Drunk off eucalyptus, they fall off their trees and are often hit by cars. But that's a digression.)

To get the word out to college students, agency Exit10 of Baltimore distributed wallet-sized bottle openers that portray a man being decapitated when used. We thought this was a silly idea until we actually saw the bottle opener. Now we just feel very uncomfortable. "This is what a train can do to your body," reads the sober black text against the metal finish.

The sight of it made us rub our necks and put down our requisite Adrants martini. Dude. Talk about a buzzkill.

by Angela Natividad    Feb-12-07    
Topic: Good, Packaging, Promotions, Strange



VW Drives Vegas, Krispy Kremes For VDay, Census Shunned

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- If you're in Vegas February 16 during he NBA All Star Weekend and want to hang with the likes of Lebron James, Baron Davis, Kenny Smith from TNT's Inside NBA and more and race against them in VW's 5 on 5 Drive Challenge, this event is for you.

- Because Valentine's day is all about sweets, Krispy Kreme is selling heart shaped donuts until Feb. 14. For each dozen purchased, people get 12 cards with a free donut coupon to give to friends. The chain is also sending box loads to celebrities during Fashion Week and to Clay Aiken for his appearance on Jimmy Kimmel next week.

- Agencies are dropping like flies from the $300 million Census pitch. McCann Erickson, Martin Agency, Mullen DDB, Leo Burnett, Ogilvy & Mather and Grey have decided not to pursue the account.

- Wall Street Journal Senior VP of Advertising Sales Judy Barry is leaving her position at the paper.

- Who knew? MySpace is making money for News Corp. And, it's the company's top money maker. eMarketer says MySpace is on track to make $525 million for Foc Interactive this year.

by Steve Hall    Feb- 9-07    
Topic: Agencies, Events, Promotions










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