In Spain, a video created by Tiempo BBDO Barcelona which shows two guys sneaking into the contry's parliament building to steal the chair of Prime Minister Zapatero has racked up over 421,000 views on YouTube and created a media frenzy with coverage in El Pais and Spitting image. Part of a United Nations campaign against poverty, the message left in place of Zapatero's chair reads "Zapatero, get on your feet on October 16 to protest against world poverty" which ties nicely to the stolen chair since, without a chair, Zapatero would have to stand the next time he went to parliament.
The video was believed to have been real by the media until the agency issued a statement to the contrary. Yes, it was staged. Part of the video was shot in parliament. The window the two climb through is not the parliament building. The shots inside parliament are the real deal but they didn't steal the actual chair, instead, using a prop. Real, unreal or otherwise, it certainly got the desired attention and media coverage for the cause.
The Slug offers up a retrospective on this past Summer's inane Head On commercial and the media frenzy which ensued because of it. If you haven't seen the spot, it's the one that repeats, "Head On. Apply directly to the forehead," over and over and over but offers no actual statement as to what the product's purpose might be. Created completely without ironic insiderism, the commercial found itself the subject of many parodies, an MSNBC interview with Barbara Lippert in which she just won't shut up, coverage on NBC Nightly New with Brian Williams, again with Barbara Lippert, and, finally, a self-referential spoof created by the company itself. Still, no one knows what the hell the product is supposed to do. OK, yes, it's for headaches but they never say so. Witty.
As Brian Unger said on MSNBC, we shouldn't be surprised to hear "Bud, put it in your mouth" during the Super Bowl.
"No! No! No! No, it's not a clandestine promotion for the band Sick Puppies, " our intern yelled at us. "But, come one, a guy in a video with a sign that says Free Hugs roaming around in Sydney, Australia just hoping to brighten the world with nothing to gain from it?" we shouted back. "Yes you jaded idiot," screamed the intern, "Not everything on YouTube is trying to sell you something."
Not convinced, we stood up and asked, "What about this little gem on the Free Hugs website that says 'With grass root marketing tactics we promote products and ideas that are in line with our core values and the FREE HUGS message.'? I suppose that just means the products and ideas they claim to promote are love and goodwill?"
"Damn," the intern who was now jumping out of her seat bellowed. "You pompous, unfeeling know-it-all! Do you think the only thing every human being thinks about is getting the newest version of the iPod?" "Um, yes," we answered.
"Fuck you," she screamed as she turned and left, likely to go give someone a free hug.
We know most MTV promotions are whacked but this Brazilian one whacks the ball way out of whack. Aside form potential references to Donnie Darko and that freakish bunny suit, we're guess the creative brief or this ad had two words in the "tone" section: fucking whacked. If we could read "Brazilian," we probably be able to better resolve the whole humping bunny thing with the intended goal of the spot.
Leveraging a previous commercial for its line of HDTV, Sony has released a collection of alternative endings to the original commercial so that...well...we don't know what becasue the endings are so stupid we lost track of what the ad was trying to accomplish. Oh but wait. The endings are riffs in actual movies and they choices tie into the tagline. Witty. It's always great fun to let the consumer think they're controlling things with these prepackaged, predetermined "optional endings" but sometimes it seems a lot of people forget what an ad is supposed to do: sell stuff. Oh but wait, maybe this does sell stuff but we didn't realize that until we watched the ads a few times. Oh but wait, that's why we have this thing called frequency.
- Agency vet Scott G shares his views on agency diversity including his overhearing an agency exec tell a recruiter "No blacks or Hispanincs."
- Geico's back with another one of those caveman commercials.
- Bill Green from Make the Logo Bigger goes much further than our usually brief, pat hand slap offered marketers for their over reliance on consumer generated media and tells clients to take the handcuffs off their own agency's creative and watch what happens.
- Mark Cuban says anyone who buys YouTube is a moron.
- Advertising Age reviews Advertising Week and determines it's the booze that made it a success.
- Al Ries, weighing in a year later, thinks the name change from J. Walter Thompson to JWT is dumb.
- We liked Yahoo's Bully commercial. Predictably, Bob Garfield didn't.
- Clear Channel offers ad units that are shorter and shorter and shorter and shorter and shorter and...well...shorter.
In yet another "is it real or is it fake" collection of YouTube videos, a giant marionette wearing, it seems, a pair of Levis was hoisted by three helicopters over the streets of Reykjavik Iceland. The giant creature towered over buildings, peered into people's windows and wore the world's biggest pair of jeans as it "walked" down the street. Real? Fake? Who cares. It's cool.
If you're not going to use hot women in bikinis when you create your beer commercial masterpiece, the only other option, really, is to blow stuff up with beer cans. Reminiscent of the famed OutPost.com Gerbil commercial, are several videos on YouTube of a few guys who were paid by Milwaukee's Best to make a beer cannon that projects beer cans into objects in front of a target such as a television, a watermelon, a plant, mayonnaise, beef stew, eggs and other assorted items. Collectively, the videos have been viewed almost a couple million times on YouTube.
If you want to see all the vdeos crammed into one, there's a montage version set the the tune of Robert Wagner's The Ride of the Valkyries made popular in the movie Apocalypse Now. All the videos are on the Milwaukee's Best website too.
Like a scene out of Mallrats, four guys in this commercial for the Alltel Wireless My Circle plan plot a way to stop the "call ten friends for free no matter what plane they are on" feature because, after all, who could possibly have more than ten friends? Created by Campbell-Ewald, the spot is part of the wireless company's second campaign called "Sales Guys" which follows the initial "Icons" launch campaign. Beyond television, the campaign will include radio, print, event marketing, online advertising and webisodes. Be sure to check out the geeks on the Alltel website along with "Chad" who attempts to get in touch with competing wireless company CEO's to tell them about the My Circle plan.
Sponsored by the NRDC, the Environmental Countdown and Ford, former Rocketboomer Amanda Congdon is heading across America on a five week road trip in a hybrid vehicle for a project called Amanda Across America. On a blog and in videos, she'll document her trip and meetings she'll have with other bloggers, politicians and environmentalists along the way. Looking like a Loneleygirl15 spoof (intentionally), Amanda kicks off her trip with a video taken in her "Connecticut bedroom" in which she displays exuberant excitement usually reserve for, well, loneleygirl15 videos.
Anyway, Gawker wonders about the whole thing, writing, "Is she really passionate about driving cross-country on some environmentalist-sponsored road trip that landed her in Good magazine? Or is she relatively unemployed and desperate for the world not to forget that she's got a decent rack?" We think the latter but we're not going to say that because she might hang up on us like she did the radio DJ who tried to tell her she was hot.