Trendhunter drew my attention to Tikatok, a social network that enables kids to design their own books. Books can be viewed online and purchased as hardcovers or paperbacks for about $20 apiece. Trendhunter says it "could be a great gift from kids to their parents."
That is, assuming kids only ever produce happy stories. Titles on Tikatok currently include The Food Pyramid that is Alive, The Nervous Basketball Star, A Dark Deep Pipe, and The Ballerina Who Wanted to be Beautiful.
I'm sensing a little melancholy there. (Especially where dark deep pipes get involved.)
It's just a matter of time before books are published bearing not merely titles but retributions waiting to be hashed out when the wee author is college-aged. My bets are on Daddy's Magic Bottle, Why Does Teacher Cry Before Class? and The Little Bully that Could.
The quote at left comes from a banner ad for The Ideas People, a "knowledge" campaign meant to school you on the modern pioneers of great ideas while slyly promoting The Economist.
It reads, "No one becomes perfect, but some become great." I thought it was apt in light of the launch of The Economist's fully redesigned homepage.
The current print edition says the designers sought to wed clean usability with informational depth. (In less diplomatic terms, it's another web 2.0 casualty. Think AJAX! Big FONTS! And widget-looking things!)
As promised in frustratingly obtuse video teasers like this one, "What Men Need to Know" unveiled its secret sponsor today.
And it's ...
A few months ago, a senior copywriter recommended I read Hey Whipple, Squeeze This by Luke Sullivan. I was incredulous, mostly because I've been swinging off Ogilvy's left you-know-what since Confessions of an Advertising Man.
(Getting into Ogilvy is like reading Atlas Shrugged for the first time. It will fuck with your mind.)
Just to be nice, I bought Sullivan's book, and I'm really sorry I did. Because now my walls are COVERED in strategic doodling. I am developing ideas I wouldn't have allocated brainpower to six months ago.
While the IS F tears up the open road, the young lovers are on a path to tear their relationship apart. In the chapters that follow, eight additional authors have their way with Terence and Julia.
This is the kick-off for "In the Belly of the Beast," a collaborative story for Lexus Magazine (with logistical help from Story Worldwide). Participating authors include Jane Smiley, Pam Houston, Brian Antony and other scrivs unduly flattered by the Lexus pressie, titled "FORGET KEROUAC -- GO ON THE ROAD WITH LEXUS ORIGINAL FICTION."
The IS F: a great shag, and literary too? Mercy, I feel a Lifetime tie-in.
See last year's effort, "Black Sapphire Pearl."
Never trash a dude until you know a little something about where he comes from. With that said, watch a great American's life unfold in storybook form and to the tune of "Young at Heart."
The video is for Young Dick Cheney, which Mel Brooks called "A funny book!" and Arianna Huffington said "Delivers a double-barreled blast of satiric buckshot." That's a lot of five-dollar words, thar.
This isn't the first time a Cheney's been thrashed in child-friendly format. In '04, his gay daughter Mary was targeted in a la Dick and Jane.
Nothing is sacred to the political machine. If somebody warps the Curious George omnibus to serve their sick machinations, I'm moving to Roald Dahl country.
- The Economist takes No.1 in AdweekMedia's Annual Hot List, up from No. 10 last year -- the biggest jump on a list otherwise dominated by women's lifestyle titles.
- 33 percent of iPhone users are cheating on Steve Jobs with other handset makers.
- Advertising affects prescriptions more than science does. Hrm. *Checks medicine cabinet* Yeah.
- The Apple brand makes the biggest impact on global consumers. (Yawn.) Those most in need of brand refurbishing were Microsoft and the United States. Mommy, why does the world hate us?
- More than 90 percent of email is spam. By the way, the term "spam" was coined 15 years and 2 days ago.
- Kids love social networks. O RLY? Thanks for the insight, champs.
- Joffrey's, a coffee hub that launched a "beta" tasting program for bloggers, has released survey results on coffee trends in the blogosphere. More on that.
Circus is this brilliant boomer lifestyle magazine that describes itself like this:
"Debate, discussion and controversy. Let's talk about the over 50s."
The third page of its February issue featured this gorgeous image of Sophia Loren perched just above the lower margin, drawing plenty of attention to the articles around her (mainly because we were scouring the text going "Who is that girl?!").
We also got to check out the magazine. It includes raunchy boomer poetry, sex and business talk, and spiffy little featurettes like The Ad that Never Ran. (Think Thatcher and Scottish oil. Feeling greasy?)
Anyway, it's refreshing to see a senior publication that's not splattered with AARP messages and bladder control ads. It also looks like an awesome resource for boomer culture.
Here's to hoping they're still around when we're pushing 50 and looking for saucy reading material.
We just finished reading Powerlines: Words That Sell Brands, Grip Fans, and Sometimes Change History, by CMO Steve Cone of Epsilon. (The one with the specs and the grimace.) It's a survey of propaganda that probably helped color the landscape of your life. The last chapter has tips on creating a powerline -- not a guaranteed formula, but still good stuff to keep in mind.
People exposed to an ad will probably pass judgment on it based on the visual and the most visible print. (Typically that's the tagline.) Ad-heads spend plenty of time on pictures, but few consider what impact a resonant string of words can deliver.
CD and president Kelly Simmons of bubble, Philadelphia is sharpening her ad chops by promoting her own book, Standing Still. Released by Simon & Schuster, it's about a mom who exchanges her life for her kidnapped daughter's.
Publicity includes $200,000 of online, sweepstakes, broadcast, direct mail and guerilla efforts, allegedly all bartered.
The effort includes promotional postcards ("The ultimate beach read") stuffed in women's swimsuit orders, courtesy of Miracle Suit. A radio campaign will air on B101 FM, an indie station.
And when it rains, ziplocked flyers (via Tri-County Printers) promoting the book as "the perfect read for a stormy night" will appear on parked car windshields.
Check out Simmons' e-zine, bykellysimmons.com. You could win a Tiffany's bracelet that matches the one worn by the protagonist (product placement! Nice touch).