Mad TV Spoofs Viagra Ad

Headquarters Films director Eric Steinman creates and directs a lot of television commercials such as successful comedy campaigns for McDonalds, Rolaids, Visa, the Jon Stewart Show, and more recently a pair of ads for USA Freedom Corps, starring Angie Harmon and Mariano Rivera.

A former agency creative with top agencies such as Young & Rubicam and BBDO/NY, where he served as a Creative Supervisor on Pizza Hut and worked on the HBO account, Steinman worked with some of the best talent in the business before becoming a director himself.

One of his most widely seen and talked about commercials is �What�s Different�, an ad for Viagra in which a man�s co-workers try to figure out what�s new and improved about their colleague, Joe. None of Joe�s pals are able to guess that what�s different is his sex life, courtesy of Viagra.

When it comes to Viagra, there is never a shortage of jokes. MadTV took it upon themselves to add to this list of jokes by spoofing Steinman's "What's Different" spot.

In a comedy sketch that aired on a recent episode of FOX�s MAD TV, Joe�s co-workers are given a hint � in the form of a rather large protrusion nearly bursting out of Joe�s pants. The happy and confident man arrives at work and is addressed by a series of oblivious co-workers who cannot figure out �what�s different� about Joe. �New haircut?� one asks. �New shoes?� queries another. �New tie?� The office receptionist doesn�t pick up on the obvious, even as Joe knocks her inbox off the desk with his "extension". "New shirt?" is her guess. Maybe it�s a promotion. �No, no promotion,� Joe responds as he bumps yet another co-worker in the rear and then pokes him in the eye with the power in his pants. Holding his wounded eye, the man asks, �Hey, Joe � what�s different with you?�

So be careful in the office if you take Viagra. View the spot here. (3MB)

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

Seventeen Magazine May Be For Sale

Primedia said Wednesday they are looking into strategic alternatives, including sale, for Seventeen magazine citing the market's lack of recognition for the strength of the magazine.

Primedia has retained Morgan Stanly to "explore strategic, value creation options for Seventeen and other properties.

"The (Seventeen) brand has successfully expanded its franchise over the past few years," said a spokesman for Primedia. "But the equity markets are not giving Primedia a market value that reflects the strength of Seventeen and its leadership in the teen category."

"There are opportunities to grow businesses beyond the current structure that Seventeen was in," Primedia Chairman and Chief Executive Tom Rogers told Reuters. "Because we have had so many approaches (on Seventeen), we said: maybe people have some ideas here."

There was no elaboration on that statement.

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

Ozzy Osbourne Commercial May Cause Pepsi Boycott

Russel Simmons, founder of The Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, is calling for a boycott of Pepsi.

Simmons says that he wants to start a boycott because Pepsi has allowed the Ozzy Osbourne spot to run when it pulled a spot that featured rapper Ludicrous. Pepsi pulled the Ludicrous spot because of Ludicrous' X-rated song lyrics but has let the Ozzy spot run when Ozzy's MTV show is replete with all sorts of potty mouthed language.

"The boycott is being called in response to Pepsi dropping Ludacris as spokesman and subsequently picking up the Osbournes, who are no less vulgar," a spokeswoman for Simmons and HSAN said in a statement.

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

MarketingFix Online Advertising Headlines

From MarketingFix: Internet marketing and media news aggregation and analysis from dozens of sources provided with insight, brevity and occasional sarcasm.

Online Dayparting Roadblock on
Overture Expands Europe Deal With AOL
20% of Jobs to Go at Lycos
FTC to Host Debate on Spam
Yahoo Testing New Paid Listing Format
DayParts and SEM Reports Results Well Above Expectations
Avenue Reports First Profits
Younger Demos Reject Traditional Media Delivery

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

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NBC Plans to Cover Athens Olympics 24/7

For the first time ever, there will be round the clock coverage of the Olympics. No more time delays. No more knowing the outcome of an event before it airs.

NBC will will use all of it's networks (NBC, MSNBC, CNBC, Bravo, and Telemundo) to offer 24 hour coverage of the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Dick Ebersol, chairman, NBC Sports & Olympics said, "We are committed to showcasing the athletes of the U.S. and the world in a way that has never been seen before. We will deliver the Olympics to the widest possible audience and give American TV viewers an unprecedented array of choices. [via MediaWeek]

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

A Theory on War Improving the Avertising Business

"Marketers are under pressure to deliver increased revenues, primarily through gains in market share," he pointed out. So, "if total market volume declines due to consumers' responses to war, marketers must advertise aggressively to capture a greater share of the smaller available market."

War would cause, "increased ad dollars, especially benefiting the already strong network and local television business. If the war ends within two months, and consumer spending levels begin moving upward, marketers will retain accelerated spending levels to assure that they regain revenues lost during the wartime period."

That's the opinion of Jack Myers, Ad tracker.

Not that I hope he's right because I want a war to happen but we could sure use a boost in this industry.

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

Trash Talk TV Overtaken by Reality TV

Jerry Springer, Jenny Jones, and Ricki Lake are all down significantly in the ratings. Seems as though low brow TV viewing has shifted from "I Slept With My Teenage Daughter's Son's Father's Mother" to "Please Watch Me Humiliate Myself by Eating Bugs So You Will Marry Me".

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

Dan Weiden to Lend Reality to Cannes

Weiden, president of Weiden & Kennedy and president of judging for film, print and posters for the upcoming Cannes International Advertising Festival wants to see the festival look forward rather then backwards. He wants winning work to be "a sign of where things could be going, the antenna to indicate a new landscape. I hope that's what we can focus on."

He thinks too much attention is given to television executions over other forms and wants everyone to know advertising place in the world. "We're not solving geo-political issues," Weiden says. "It's just advertising and we're having a lot of fun." [via Ad Age]

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

Ten Marketing Tips to Reach the College Age Demo

In a just released study from Harris Interactive and Youth 360, college students do like humor in advertising but more important is price. They are loyal to their parents brands, care about global issues, and are not couch potatoes.

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03    

African Amercians Do Not Like Reality TV

Black viewers want sitcoms and have no interest in the current glut of reality programming. BBDO just did a study that found reality shows like 'American Idol' and 'Joe Millionaire' do not resonate with with African Americans. The study indicates that none of the reality shows fall in the top 20 most watched shows in black homes.

"There's not a whole lot going on in terms of diversity in those [reality] shows, particularly in 'Joe Millionaire,' " said Doug Alligood of BBD&O.

"Even if minorities are involved, the whole positioning of those shows - they've got somewhat of a demeaning element to them. Blacks are very sensitive to people being embarrassed - they've had enough of that themselves."

by Steve Hall    Feb- 5-03