A great article by Wharton School Professor of Operations Eric Clemsons entitled "Why Advertising Is Failing On The Internet" takes a deep look at the current state (shambles) of advertising and what the future looks like after we all bid adieu to the industry's current lameness.
In a nutshell, and this is not a new line of thinking, it's all about people seeking information (because it's readily available) rather than having it shoved down their throats (as it has been since the dawn of advertising.)
At a recent SXSWi panel conducted "core conversation-" style (in which a presumed thought leader guides a group discussion on the subject at hand), the hour spent sitting on the floor in a cramped meeting room proved one important fact about social media: Even the professed experts are doing it wrong.
A Dougie Howser-esque "social media specialist" at Razorfish and a group of others ranging in age from 17 to 32 years old sat cross-legged on the floor and cross-talked their way through a series of stereotypes, assumptions, and painfully incorrect conclusions.
- Geeks are Sexy interviews Eepybird, the guys responsible for this wild wonder. Oh, and the Diet Coke & Mentos Experiment.
- "Igotapostcard is a continuous project where people practice the art of leaving self-addressed stamped postcards in public places to be picked up and personalized by others, who then return them."
- Headsmack indeedy.
- SXSW thought leader rage. And we're with 'im on this one.
- Young people want more entertaining ads. ORLY?
- LOL. "For every 100 points that the DOW drops within two months after the time of purchase," teesandtats customers "receive $5 dollars off of their purchase."
- Agency in a cardboard box.
- Google ads on iPhone apps. Imagine that.
Musicians Squeak E. Clean and DJ Zegon joined forces under the name NASA (North America/South America) to release their first album, The Spirit of Apollo, which has been in-progress since '03.
Promotion strikes me as general and disorganized, but the pair has many talented hands behind it. According to the pressie, the Apollo album was conceived "with the righteous goal of bringing people together through music and art" -- as a result, it's heavy with surprising collaborations and interesting visual media.
Tom Waits growls over Kool Keith, Karen O taunts while Ol' Dirty Bastard gives shout-outs to Wu Tang and N.A.S.A from the grave, and David Byrne, Chuck D and others expound on the evils of "Money."
Other collaborators include Method Man, Seu Jorge, Kanye West, Santogold, George Clinton. Then there's the charmed director team: Syd Garon, Paul Griswold, 3Legged Legs and Flourescent Hill.
Artists that donated paint and pens to the animated music videos include Shepard Fairey, Sage Vaughn, The Date Farmers, Mark Gonzales, Marcel Dzama and Splunny. Some also contributed original album cover designs, so CD buyers get five interchangeable covers per copy.
I realize this is a lot going on so I'm gonna just show you stuff. Here's the latest release, People Tree with David Byrne, Chali 2na (from J-5!) and art by Marcel Dzama. It's magically delicious.
Continuing that creepy Japanese game show-inspired shaving fetish campaign thing for Nivea, DraftFCB and Rubber Republic assault us with Foam Beard Lady.
We are appropriately terrified.
The associated microsite guides shaving addicts to Stepping Stones Retreat, where a slightly Running with Scissors-y doctor will promise to cure you of glabermania while eye-raping you with Nivea shaving products. Compulsive shavers will no doubt be pleased.
There's something about Japanese pop culture that compels us to watch and not look away. Japan is the seat of all fetishes, magnified for your viewing pleasure. (And we're not just talking* sexual ones.)
To ensure eyeballs for Nivea's line of shaving products, DraftFCB and Rubber Republic tapped into "glabermania" -- the addiction to shaving and being smooth. Inspired by our game show-crazed Japanese cohorts, here's what they came up with.
Come on, don't knock it. What else do you and your jaded creative homies have to do on Saturday night? Grab a camera and pool your shaving cream; think of it as a company morale-builder.
In the continuing saga of Carlos Mandelbaum and his insightful take on the state of marketing today, his latest outing examines the fantasy life of corporate managers. Mandelbaum ponders the penchant of corporate managers to fantasize they are warriors or mystics or...students getting all philosophical and intellectual by enjoying mind-expanding lectures by really cool professors...like the dude that did those weird UPS whiteboard ads.
To better represent the interest of its users, whose lives "[revolve] around social and user generated media," Skittles tore a sheet out of Modernista's playbook and relinquished control of its website.
Visits to Skittles.com drive users to the Wikipedia article about the company, with navs featured in a pop-up that explains what users are looking at (Modernista has one of these too):
"Don't sweat it, this is still Skittles.com. It just has a new twist. User this as your guide to find anything and everything Skittles that's online. Have fun."
Interesting. When Modernista surrendered itself to the Zeitgeist
, we thought the move was brave and forward-moving, not least because it nods to pure transparency. (We saw that earlier this month
, when Modernista's "n3wz" section, which points to either Google News or Google Blog Search, was deluged with articles about layoffs at the agency.)
It also opens the label up to just general meanness. Modernista hardly had its new "site" up 24 hours before Wikipedia yanked its page. Modernista.com now points to the Facebook Fan page.
Aaaanywho, the Skittles "site" model will work about the same way. The nav bar will drive you to places all over the "interwebs," including YouTube and flickr. We like that "CHATTER" points to a search for "skittles" on Summize, meaning you can read everything Twitter users are tweeting about Skittles in real-time.
UPDATE, 9:45 AM EST on 2/28/09: Skittles.com now points directly to Summize results for "skittles." Looks like Wikipedia is an equal-opportunity antagonist -- although Wiki articles are still used in the "PRODUCTS" section.
- Havas Digital has partnered with global social graph mapping company Media6Degrees to help the agency "integrate consumer insights with hyper-targeting and provide increased value for their advertisers." Damn, that was mouthful!
- Mullen has reeled in the American Diabetes Association account and has signed a three year contract with the organization.
- In the UK, they stick human beings inside vending machines to sell Kit Kats. Those witty Brits!
- Crispin Porter + Bogusky does the celebrity magazine thing for Old Navy.
- Not anywhere near as inspired as the Where the Hell is Matt Harding videos, this following "Winfomercial" attempts to...I don't know...turn a game show into a commercial?
- In case you needed even more proof America is the kingdom of the superficial, check out this Sarah Haskins Target Women video about skin care products.
You know how old people always dance to, well, old music? That's because it's the music they grew up with. They didn't have rock, hip-hop, trance, disco, new age and they certainly didn't have Jumpstyle.
According to this Duval Guillaume-created commercial for the Agricultural Marketing Board of Flanders, "People always dance to music from their youth." We see a loving old couple dancing to some old tune and then...quick cut...to two dudes doing Jumpstyle with the tag, "So you know what's awaiting you. Start drinking milk."
Did we or did we not tell you eight months ago this dance craze would soon appear in an ad? Oh yes we did, brotha!
Angela and I learned Jumpstyle today. If you're lucky, you'll get to see us do it at the next ad conference. It should be good for a laugh.