Lending a bit of humor to the daunting tax season and promoting its TaxCut while doing so, H&R Block has launched Deduct-a-Buck, a seventies-style game show-like game hosted by Max Refund. The game consists of five questions relating to the kinds of thing one can deduct when filing taxes. Prizes range from a Dell XPS Notebook, to a $100 GameStop gift certificate to free online tax preparation. Created by Mullen, the game is both humorous and comforting to what's on the mind of everyone as April 15 approaches and we all struggle to please Uncle Sam.
By now, you've all seen those witty images and videos of the Burger King frolicking with the lovely Brooke Burke. Courtesy of The Superficial, we have a couple more images which further the story. It now seems the King and Burke are engaged, if not married in this odd but very cool web saga created by Crispin Porter + Bogusky. While the two did get frisky on the beach with Burke revealing tantalizing hints of her upper body curvaceousness, something tell us, or at least we hope, we won't be seeing the two getting it on in the honeymoon suite.
To encourage use of its new version of Messenger, MSN has launched a promotion, created by Fallon, called ESP Billy, a microsite with episodic videos featuring ESP Billy, a white trash online psychic played by Ricky Jay who communicates with his clients through MSN Messenger video chat. There's a pilot episode that introduces the characters, and then three interactive episodes where the user can decode the fate of the main character, Travis, but choosing an ending based on ESP Billy's predictions of the future. The catch to the promotion - and the entire point of the promotion - is the three videos can only be viewed using MSN Messenger for which a convenient download botton is provided. The pilot episode, which, itself, is quite good, can be viewed in a browser. The online element will be supported by print and online media beginning in a couple of weeks
While there's plenty of places to search for and look at viral advertising, Viral HQ has gathered together an expansive collection of viral ads and categorized them by name along with the brand they were created for. Like many other viral accumulators, Viral HQ also has plans to offer seeding and tracking services. While hosting virals is a great way to sell other services, Viral HQ has done a respectable job of gathering together a huge collection. That said, it needs a search feature so virals can be found based on the brands as well as the name. Currently, it's just an alphabetical directory.
With the launch of former PUMA International Marketing Manager Peter Kim's weblog today, we can finally, almost three years later, close the book on those famous PUMA ads. Once thought to be some sort of clandestine marketing effort knowingly created by PUMA so the company could then deny their existence and benefit from the publicity, Kim confirms suspicion and tells us "a small Eastern European agency affiliated with Saatchi & Saatchi created the ads on spec, trying to win business with a PUMA subsidiary." The agency failed to win any business, and it sent them out to their friends causing worldwide proliferation, un-informed speculation (including here on Adrants, hopped up controversy and cease and desist letters sent to bloggers.
CareerBuilder just can't give up those chimps. They're in ads, They,re on the website. Now they're going to be in your email if CareerBuilder has its way. The job site has launched a five step, create-an-email microsite, called Monk-e-mail, on which visitors can pick a chimp, dress it up, give it something to say, preview it and send it to a friend. It's humorous enough nut just not as funny as that Wedding Crashers Trailer Crashers thing.
Extending the tease we pointed out a couple weeks ago, Agent Provocateur has released yet a bit more of its soon to be eight minute long film, Tied Up At The Office, by Mike Figgis starring models Lara Jones and Amanda Grace. The film goes well beyond the previous Kylie Minogue lingerie video she did a couple years ago for the retailer and focuses heavily on self-gratification, lesbianism and S&M. This clip is 50 seconds long with the full film due to be released February 9. While this clip has no nudity, the subject matter and the particularly tantalizing female vocal emanations suggests it be viewed in the comfort of your own private hideaway.
If this video pans out the way it teases us to belive it will, we've got to hand it to Agenct Provocateur for being this daring and for brining some serious cinematic power to this this we call advertising. No doubt, this will rank up there as one of the most viewed virals of the year.
This year, there seems to be a fascination with the flushing of toilets during halftime. Like the obsession with national toilet flush stats following M*A*S*H, Scott tissue will leverage the notion that all 90 million Super Bowl viewers will collectively go to the bathroom at the same time with the launch of Halftime Flush, a site touting the dissolvability of Scott toilet paper. On the site, Mike Ditka lends his intense convicibility to Scott's superior toilet tissue and a game allows visitors to match toilets to their flushing sounds. OK, so bathroom humor is always a good standby but we like VIA's simpler approach to the whole halftime flush thing.
Using the home shopping network approach to selling an AK-47, the Amnesty International Protect the Human cause has released a humorous but convincing video that claims the world's arms trade is out of control and calls for governments to sign the Arms Trade Agreement. The video was created by Mother London.
A tipster has brought to our attention an odd association between the McKinney Silver-created Pherotones campaign and the release of Stephen King's new novel, Cell. While the Pherotones promotion may have something to do with McKinney Silver telecommunications client Qwuest, Stephen King's new novel most certainly has to do with telecommunication - tones sent through cell phones that turn people into flesh-eating zombies. In fact, King's book is being juiced with a cell phone-related promotion of its own.
Hmm, you say? Perhaps it's just a coincidence. Perhaps McKinney doesn't keep up on all things Stephen King. Or, though an unrealistic but intriguing stretch, the Pherotones campaign is a promotion for King's new novel. Nah.