Fan Blog Advances Career of Pepsi/iTunes Girl

This morning Mandy Fujiko Amano a.k.a., That Pepsi Girl was interviewed during the KROQ Kevin and Bean show. She's the half-Asian hottie who appeared in the Pepsi/iTunes Super Bowl commercial and is slated to appear in the May issue of Maxim. This sudden popularity is due, in no small part to a weblog launched by Michigan college student Justin who also runs the f.u.b.a.r. weblog The blog, That Pepsi Girl, was launched on the eve of the Super Bowl after Justin saw her in the commercial. We covered it here.

Since that time, he dug up her real name, set her up with Maxim for the interview and photo shoot and continues to report on her activities.

During the interview (listen here), Amano discusses her work leading up to the Super Bowl commercial, her experience seeing the spot air during a Super Bowl party at which she received all kinds of double takes from guys at the party and her discovery of the blog that helped shoot her to fame.

At the end of the interview, Kevin and Bean surprised her by getting Justin on the phone. She giggled and said, "I don't know whether to hug you or slap you." She thanked him for his help and joked she'd credit him if she ever received and Oscar. Never underestimate the power of the weblog.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

Ashanti Cool With Herbal Essence Product Placement In Video

In her new video for the single, Only U, 24 year old Ashanti appears in a shower scene with Herbal Essence hair products in the background. It's a paid product placement and the Grammy-winning singer has no problem with the merging of art and commerce.

"It made sense. It was a shower scene. You know, you have shampoo and conditioner in the shower . . . It's the best of both worlds," she said during rounds of promotional interviews. Tying it together, she also appears is commercials for Herbal Essence which feature her Only U song. We, of course, have no problem appearing anywhere she likes.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

Fifties Style Marmite Commercial Terrifies Kids, Gets Banned

There's an uproar in the U.K. today over a 50's style sci-fi style commercial for the deliciously gooey Marmite because the ad has apparently caused some over sensitive kids to have nightmares. Oh, the horror! It's been banned from children's television by the Advertising Standards Authority. It shows a large n lob-like creature oozing out of a grocery store and onto the street and people run from it, screaming, until they realize they'd rather jump into it because it tastes so good. And we thought America was the only over sensitive, coddling, self-esteem preserving nation in the world. View the nightmare here.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

ABC Promotes 'Jake In Progress' With NYC Flower Handout

A reader reports having been randomly handed a flower on her way to work today in New York. For a minute, she thought she might just be the victim of yet another sidewalk kook, she was informed it's a promotion for ABC's new John Stamos show, Jake In Progress, which premieres tomorrow night at 8PM. By deploying the smart programming strategy of airing two episodes against FOX's The O.C. and two repeats of those episodes against NBC's The Apprentice, ABC just might stand a chance of garnering some viewers for the new show.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

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USB Thumb Drives New Advertising Delivery Device

Engadget reports it's seen a rise in use of USB thumb drives by marketers as delivery devises for promotional material. Smaller than a CD but not as easily inserted in magazines as promotional CDs are, the device is reusable and will sit there, plugged into a person's computer used over and over again while that branded log stares the user in the face. Hmm.

Marketers providing something useful. Now, that's refreshing.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

Pespi Personifies Pepsi One With TV-Less 'Oneify' Campaign

An upcoming reintroduction campaign for Pepsi One will, intriguingly and smartly, not rely on television but rather on a website called Oneify; print ads in Blender, Details, Giant, Stuff and Sync; billboards, trading cards and promotional events. The website introduces a set of characters such as "The Loud One," "The Poetic One," "The Illest One," "The Weightless One," The Bleepy One" and more - all of whom include their own elements of "personification" in the form of wallpaper, IM icon and trading card downloads. Unfortunately for the ADD, quick cut target audience, the trading cards are big, fat PDF downloads rather than simple, faster image files.

Quoted in the New York Time, Pepsi agency TBWA Worldwide Chairman and CEO Lee Clow explains the campaign. "Kids are so smart, they'll call you out on overt marketing in a minute. So telling them a 'one-calorie, great taste' story is so ho-hum to them. If you engage them in unorthodox ways, with a bit of grace, charm, whimsy, fun and discovery you can actually ask them to buy something."

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

Bayer's Aleve Gets Movie (Mis) Quote Treatment In Ads

Freelance Wall Street Journal Online Columnist Carl Bialik, writing on his Gelf Magazine site, points out ads for Bayer's Aleve have gone a bit overboard taking supportive FDA quotes out of context to make Aleve sound better than it really is. Granted, the FDA has no problem with Aleve but Bialik examines how a current Aleve ad campaign has "massaged" and mis-attributed certain quotes, much like movie marketers do, to glean positive endorsement. While Bayer and Aleve are above board products, it's an interesting look at the length to which marketers go to insure their products are perceived in the most positive light.

UPDATE: Because of Bialik's article, Bayer, at the request of Dow Jones, has changed the wording in its ads to more accurately attribute the quote.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

Rabble Enhances Mobile Blogging

Mobile device content enabler Intercasting Corporation has introduced Rabble, a mobile blogging application for Qualcomm's BREW handsets. Rabble will enable users to create and distribute content via mobile devices. It's all part of a newly created category called Location-aware Media Networking Operators.

The application bolsters web-based blogging by adding location awareness, proximity and camera phone integration to create a mobile-specific tool to help create user-generated content and community. With Rabble, mobile content is tagged with location information and other descriptive data that helps users find each other based on the media they create and where they create it. Users can create their own channels, where they collect and store content to inform, entertain, interact and connect with the surrounding environment.

Harnessed properly, marketers could piggyback on this tag based method of identifying relevant content and delivered finite, personalized messaging. Everyday, we get closer to Minority Report.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05    

Denmark Recruits Spies With Ad Campaign

Not usually the sort of thing openly discussed in public media, Denmark's Danish Defense Intelligence Service has decided the best way to recruit spies is through advertising.

The 8 million dollar campaign, running nationally in newspapers, hopes to decrease Denmark's reliance on foreign intelligence regarding the situation in Iraq.

UPDATE: Åsk Wäppling of Adland reports: "Hey I found out where the ad ran by the way, I read in this afternoons tabloid that the ads ran on Sunday in "the morning papers", and the initial report about the ads (which Reuter then picked up) came from Berlinske Tiderna newspaper. Our morning paper is Politiken, one of the top three, and there is no ad from FE (the national defense information) in that paper."

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-05