Today I came across a banner ad run by the Newspaper Association of America, which seeks to reposition "the newspaper" -- a rolled-up, grayish mound of reading material that occasionally appears on the threshold of hotel room doors -- as "The Multi-Medium."
"Is newspaper old media or new media?" the ad asks, followed by an enigmatic, all-encompassing response: "Yes." Below the text is a woman whose newspaper appears to be feeding content to other media from a bunch of wires and cords. Cute.
Click-throughs guide the perplexed to Newspaper Media. With pretty imagery, plenty of data -- many of which are broken links -- and sentences that melodramatically start, "In a world where consumers are tuning out advertising...", the NAA hopes we'll start perceiving newspapers as less a stagnating medium than an abstract (but stable!) concept: "newspaper" isn't just where Gram finds the crossword; it is THE legit news source, offline and online (unless you're looking for data on why).
And the NAA can help you (yes, you!) advertise on both.
In defense of the NAA's position -- which could use some work, starting with those dead links -- print media isn't dying so very quickly. Newspaper readership grew 2.5 percent in the top 100 markets, according to a survey from earlier this year. And trusted newspaper brands increasingly dip into other so-called "new" media: mobile and internet, for a start. The New York Times even started embedding video.
See? Nobody's dying. Now go help Rupert Murdoch finance a new yacht.
There's something crude and flippant about these new ads by the Corn Refiner's Association, which have begun advertising to undo all the bad PR surrounding high fructose corn syrup.
In one spot, a mother casually accuses another of not caring what her kids eat; in another, an uptight boyfriend insinuates his girlfriend doesn't love him because she's offered him an artificially sweetened Popsicle.
Both the girlfriend and the accused mom get the last word in the end. Turns out the corn syrup Nazis don't know why it's bad, and are apparently only following an invisible crowd of lemmings informed by, who knows, the nasty nasty liberal media.
Each spot ends with "You're in for a sweet surprise!" and guides users to SweetSurprise.com, which sports a gigantic, disarmingly fresh ear of (as-yet-unrefined?) corn.
Because they're spraying on their pantyhose.
But wait! -- don't stop at aerosol hosiery. Think bigger. Think self-adhering panties. Introducing the NYCE G strapless G-string, part of a life-changing liaison between Nyce Legs -- the spray-on pantyhose people -- and Shibue Couture. Helping you look your sexy best.
Thanks to MTLB for the find.
In its ongoing quest to appeal to the Prozac nation ("Have a happy period!"), P&G pad-peddler Always redid its site.
Think pastel shades, abusive Corsiva-style typefaces and a general "Happy" theme. PMS-sufferers are invited to spread the happy! with downloadable insanity, zen garden therapy, or -- better yet! -- by printing out iron-on clip art.
"Make your period a happier time by grabbing a comfy tee and pair of panties, picking your favorite transfer designs and heating up the iron!" the site prattles, its copywriter clearly a model of loathing -- or on a whole lot of Zoloft.
Ever see those Advent Day calendars that count down to Christmas, and with each new day you can pop open another part of the calendar to reveal a wooden toy or a piece of chocolate?
Gerrymander, a company that produces political oddities, worked with Ignited/LA to release an election day calendar that does pretty much the same thing. Buy one for $12.98. Then, starting from October 1st, pop open each of the cut-out doors to find neither chocolate nor choking hazards, but non-partisan political wisdom, like what's listed below.
Guess who said what!*
o "I never vote for anybody, I always vote against."
o "Democracy is never a final achievement. It is a call to untiring effort."
o "Who's more foolish; the fool, or the fool who follows him?"
I like how when you Google "advent day calendar," the "2008 Election Day Advent Calendar by Gerrymander" is the first organic result that comes up. Way to usurp the old-school kitsch kings!
Crazy crooner Matt Maxwell is at it again. Following his five songs about Flash, design and web technology, Maxwell is out with some new tunes about the heated inter-relationship between left-brained account managers and right-brained creatives as well as the difficulty in preparing for client presentations. It's goofy stuff but it does highlight the pain points only someone who works in the business can know.
Maxwell admits he's not such a great singer but he did have the opportunity last month to perform one of his songs in front of an audience of 800 in San Francisco at FlashForward. That can't be all bad.
When it comes to educating the public about sex, nobody beats the French for racy content and entertainment value. But RFSU, the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education, comes pretty close.
Visit Shave the Pussy, a promotional "intimate care guide" for, uh, trimming Fiffi. Style you own, name it too (the one at left is called "KFC"), or just rate the designs of others. Get this: for entering a unique design, you could win your own barber set.
Fun times in the bathroom!
In Extended Stay Hotels' latest ad, a sizable breeze blows out of clients' asses, effectively enabling them to slam doors from 10 feet away. The premise is, Extended Stay Hotel will make you just that comfortable.
More coherent than its last effort, where a girl wanders around licking stuff. I respect that ESH will make you feel comfortable enough to pass gas, but do I want to be in the building when everybody's sharing what their insides smell like?
Just the thought of strangers ambling about in robes, passing gas and licking shit ... ugh, I wish I hadn't just had Chee-Tos. Way to turn tummies, Toy/New York.
- LiveBar makes static websites instantly interactive. Hooray! No work for you.
- Twenis. Hilarity.
- Yahoo tries hard to be kooky. "That's the problem with Yahoo: It thinks it's an iPod -- universally loved and carried around. But it's really a Mac -- a fine product nevertheless rejected by many."
Well, everyone got what they wanted. Those zany Bill Gates/Jerry Seinfeld ads (see 1 and 2) are out of the picture and now we'll never see what they were building up to. That upsets me. Then again, I didn't whip out the $10 million for Seinfeld.
In their stead, Crispin's hired a dead-ringer for John Hodgman, the stodgy but lovable "humorist" who personifies PC in Apple's "Mac vs. PC" ads. (See Hodgman pose as free pizza in the most recent spot. He's so cute!)
According to Engadget, the new effort is a direct rebuttal to the "Mac vs. PC" ads, which have become part of popular culture. One even starts out with the John Hodgman lookalike saying, "Hello, I'm a PC, and I've been made into a stereotype."