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Laughably describing AOL as some sort of "icon of pop culture," Mercedes Benz has signed a deal with AOL to "spotlight a new generation of artists through the premier online music destination AOL Music." Mercedes-Benz and AOL Music launched "On Our Radar," a feature that lets fans wallow in discovery of new music. It's part of the car manufacturer's yearlong collaboration with AOL Music on its Breakers program, which showcases a selection of developing artists. The partnership will promote the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class while bringing new artists to what Mercedes and AOL believe to be "the eyes and ears of trendsetting, young music fans."
Just one letter away from becoming the ad industry's most hilarious brand management hire, Megan Stooke has been chosen to handle Hummer's marketing. Stooke replaces Liz Vanzura and will work with Hummer agency Modernista in Boston. Hopefully, there won't be too many jokes circulating around the uber-cool, hardwood floored warehouse offices of the agency when Stroke...uh...Stook shows up to massage the agency's Hummer work.
Perhaps anticipating the needs to distance itself from its own $32 million tax mistake, tax preparation firm H & R Block, according to AdWeek, will this week brief five agencies on its $100 million account. In the loop will be Deutsch/LA, Arnold, DDB/Chicago, Campbell Mithun and Mullen. Currently, most H & R Block work is handled by Campbell Mithun. Played properly, there's a great inside joke to be leveraged in future campaigns.
Cheeky New Zealand vodka marketer 42 Below is at it again. This time the company is highlighting its Stil vodka with a "Win A Russian Bride" competition complete with video and print ads. Geoff Ross, chief executive of the 42 Below company, explains the promotion thusly, telling the Sunday Star-Times, "For the single Kiwi bloke who might not be an All Black or very good looking, this is a chance to get hooked up with somebody pretty hot. The ideal woman for the Kiwi bloke is one who keeps him fed and looked after all day and meets all his needs."
Of course it's all a tongue in cheek joke but, predictably, not everyone is taking it that way. View the video/ad here.
If you can't get publicity with a great product, create a crappy one and get lots of publicity. This has been Jones Soda's tactic for quite some time. Bt creating flavors such as Brussel Sprout, Broccoli Casserole and Turkey soda, Jones Soda found itself featured on Good Morning America and Jay Leno. Jones Soda Founder Peter Van Stolk thinks he has the key to publicity saying, "I've been in business 10 years and launched 80 flavors, and none of the great-tasting ones ever got on Jay Leno." While it may be stunt marketing, it's paid off handsomely with revenue jumping 18 percent to $24.7 million in the first nine months of 2005. Perhaps Hanes should sell underwear with celebrity skid marks. That's get them on Stern and the likes of Fark in no time.
To counteract American's love for credit and denial of debt, the Homeownership Preservation Foundation had to demonstrate just how annoying debt can be in the only terms Americans can understand - annoyingly humorous television commercials. Addressing the 2.9 million home foreclosures that have occurred in the last five years, Minneapolis agency Colle+McVoy created two public service announcements that use annoyance to demonstrate just how annoying debt and it's result can be. The two spots, Loud Mouth and Annoying were directed by Brendan Gibbons of Los Angeles' Hungry Man Productions.
OK, we finally get it. This Pigs Anonymous thing. To promote the Advertising Women of New York's Good, Bad & Ugly Awards, Lowe created a site that calls men pigs. Oh but wait. We don't think anything's wrong with it. After all, men have been calling women bitches hoes and sluts for years. Payback's a bitch. Certainly, you've all noticed how men have to be the stupid one in all commercials now, right? That's payback for all they years men made women stand in front their refrigerator glorifying it as if it were some sort of Godlike orgasmatron needed because no man gave a crap about a woman having an orgasm in the fifties. So as an extension of Dad appearing to be a doofus in cell phone commercials, men can now appear to be sexist pigs on a site created by women who have years of pent up hate having been glorified as nothing but D-cups in a bikini catfighting in beer commercials. Oops, sorry. It's all a joke. We get it. Ha ha. Funny.
We're not sure how recent this is but In the vein of the Apple/Postal Service and Apple/Lugz rip offs, we've been made aware of yet another ad-related rip off. This time it's fashion label French Connection seemingly ripping off a video created by record label Groovecutters for a recent television ad. The rip off even uses the same actresses and the same setting which leads one to believe it's more of a wink/nod than a blatant rip off. No matter, Groovecutters has unleashed their legal department on French Connection so, no doubt, there will be some enjoyable bitching to come out of all of this.
The original Groovecutters video is here. The French Connection ad is here. A comparison is here.
A press release rolled across our screen today which claimed a supposedly controversial video supposedly leaked virally last week was supposedly "under fire" from a Muslim group because the video supposedly poked fun at Muslims. The whole thing's a sham. Pokershow.com is behind it. They invented the cause group Muslim Media Watch under the guise of a plainly fake Blogger blog which just launched Feb. 17 according to Whois and the fact the blog has nearly no content. It's amateur hour again in poker marketing land. Of course we just did exactly what they wanted - give them publicity.
Adrants reader John Brock sends us this precious example of how not to use slang in advertsing. Massachusetts discount chain Building 19 ran an ad in a flyer promoting wife-beater t-shirts. Oops. Out came the cause groups on that one with Jane Do Inc. spokewoman telling Boston's WCVB, ""I can't say what I thought. I know what I thought, but I can't say out loud what I thought." We know what she thought: "You chauvinistic asswipes! How the fuck could you degrade women so harshly glamorizing low life, trailer park scum who beat the shit out of their wives on a daily basis?"
Building 19 apologies came fast from spokesman Jerry Ellis who said, "They were right. It was awful and I am sorry it happened. It's a slang expression, a street expression, but we should have known better not to use it. I am supposed to read every word. Sometimes it's busy or I am lazy. We are working on a retraction." Refreshingly, that comment definitely didn't go through the press release filter.