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Successful Agency Holiday Card Gets MarketingSherpa Post Analysis


While this last holiday season generated an inordinate amount of agency holiday cards filled with the usual inside humor, self-effacing irony (does that make any sense) and kitsch quotient, one never thought a simple agency holiday card would merit the attention of uber-marketing site MarketingSherpa (open access until Jan. 15) but one agency cracked through the barrier. Enlighten, whose card, called Holiday Party Excuse Generator, gave visitors a means to gracefully back out of attending the overbearing plethora of industry holiday parties generated 50,000 visitors who sent 20,000 email excuses, got named Macromedia Site of the Day, received loads of press attention and helped grow traffic to the agency's site 400 percent with visitors who spent 75 percent more time on the site than usual.

Not bad. Not bad at all for what used to be a last minute, let-the-interns-do-it, love-the-client endeavor. And, to boot, not bad at all having the work analyzed and featured in front of 150,000 marketing and advertising professionals courtesy of MarketingSherpa. It seems the Holiday card will now become the new agency self-promo.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 6-06    
Topic: Agencies

New England Patriots Highlight Visa Security Features


Visa has teamed with the NFL in an AKQA-created online campaign, called Know the Metaphors, which uses cartoon images of New England Patriot players standing in as metaphors for the Visa card's security features. In individual videos, each of the five selected players, Brandon Gorin, Tom Ashworth, Dan Koppen, Russ Hochstein and Matt Light use their football prowess in humorous ways to deter criminals and highlight Visa security features. It's a nice way of making boring credit card features like identity theft, fraud monitoring and that little three digit code on the back of the card seem interesting.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 6-06    
Topic: Online, Super Bowl 2006

Adobe to Launch 'Faces of InDesign' Campaign


Created by Goodby-Silverstein and GREY Direct, Adobe will, on January 9, launch a new online campaign called "Faces of InDesign" to promote the company's Creative Suite 2 which launched earlier this year with the tagline, "Everything but the idea." The campaign will feature the images and personal stories of designers, art directors and ad execs as they go through their day using Adobe products. One of the creative elements in the campaign can be seen here.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 6-06    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online

GoDaddy Builds Super Bowl Buzz, Clothing Will Be Minimal


AdJab's Chris Thilk and Tom Biro sat in on the GoDaddy press conference which, they report, was held basically to appease media who are clamoring for some big scoop when all that's happening is, as GoDaddy CEO Bob Parsons has said all along, is Super Bowl business as usual. GoDaddy, like any other Super Bowl advertiser would (or should) do, is simply trying to get as much buzz as they can prior to the game and insure that buzz lasts long after the game is over as it did last year. Last year's big-boobed strap-slip spot, by the way, worked to the tune of generating $11 million in media value and increasing the company's market share from 16 to 24 percent.

In the call, Parsons riffed about the difficulty his spots receive which he said amounts to a form of censorship emanating almost entirely from one organization, the Parents Television Council. Parsons also said all the hullabaloo is basically pointless. GoDaddy will create whatever it wants and place it on its website for all to see. The Super Bowl spot, again featuring Candice Michelle dressed very much unlike a beekeeper according to Parsons, will simply be a tease for the unedited version. Once again, GoDaddy is maximizing the PR angle to great benefit.

Thilk and Biro plan to hypothesize about what we'll see from GoDaddy in their spot. Since GoDaddy likes to poke at pop culture, perhaps they should take a stab at the celebrity anorexic ugliness trend and, with Candice Michelle, prove once and for curves are, indeed, better than no curves.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Super Bowl 2006

Bare Navels Not Good For Everyone But Good For Oranges


While today's fashion dictates its slaves adhere to the bare midriff/navel commandment, the unfortunate side affect for the rest of us is some navels shouldn't even be exposed no matter what fashion dictates. For fresh fruit shipping company Florida-Citrus, this isn't a problem. A new commercial from new agency Tangelo Ideas makes this point quite clearly in a new spot for the company.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Commercials

Photographer Says Advertising Has Its Perks


South African photographer JoNo Nienaber posts some of his work on Flickr and yesterday he posted an image he shot of a woman wrapped in frilly white bed sheets and commented for all who wonder why advertising, at times, can be so much fun, "another day in the ofice... hardly work when you're shooting this!" How true and not to mention all those media interns as well.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Agencies

PETA Says Don't Free Parakeets


AdJab points out some of PETA's recent overbearing animal protection stupidity stating PETA registered a complaint over a Samsung X200 mobile phone ad in India which shows two kids letting a parakeet out of its cage. We'll give you a minute to utter your collective "Huh?" OK? Done wallowing in the obsessive meddlings of an uptight organization that think all animals should live in a posh Park Avenue Suite? Good. And now for the rest of the story. Oops, that's some other guy's line. Anyway, it seems you need some kind of permit to use parakeets in an ad. AdJab humorously solves the whole problem by suggesting creatives, in the future, just CGI the little guys in thus avoiding all manner of PETAmania.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Strange

Yellow Pages Joins The Living With New Syndicated Ratings Service


In what some might assume, incorrectly, to be an effort to save a dying medium, Yellow Pages publishers have banded together in support of a new syndicated third-party measurement system called Yellow Pages Market Reporter. The service is backed by ten Yellow Pages publishers and has signed up 12 agencies. The service is based on research done by Knowledge Networks/SRI across 75,000 Yellow Pages users in 125 geographic areas. Perhaps the research will prove prematurely prevailing wisdom wrong and find Johnny still needs that fat Yellow Pages book on his chair to reach the table.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Yellow Pages

We Interrupt This Program to Bring You...Self Promotion

Self-promotion is for losers unless, of course, it's yourself you're promoting so we, unabashedly, will share with you that Adrants has received a complimentary nod from MediaPost's MEDIA magazine along with Adjab, Adverblog, AdPulp and Freshglue. We like to noteriety and the company and love what author Liz Tascio had to write about Adrants.

"Written by marketing expert Steve Hall, this blog ranks as one of the superpowers, lauded by Forbes, Advertising Age, and the Wall Street Journal. Hall sets the tone with a kitschy martini glass in the banner and cheeky posts, and offers brief, savvy hits on innovative campaigns, industry news and research, and a little dish. You always feel like you've learned something, and that it was fun. Hall also collects weird marketing arcana - like the fact that Clark, Texas, changed its name to 'Dish' in exchange for free cable."

We're just going to bask in all that adoration with a mid-morning martini. Why don't you all grab one too because without you, there'd be no Adrants martini glass in the first place. Many thanks to all.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Announcements

Winding Road Car Commercial Gets 'Winterized'


The camera zooms in. It zooms out. It pans across. It love's it's subject. It adoringly tries to make...oh screw it...it's just another winding road car commercial. That's probably what visual effects company A52 thought when LA agency Team One asked them to "winterize" a previously shot commercial for the 2006 Lexus IS. Explaining the strategy, Team One Executive Producer Jack Epsteen said, "We have a long history of relying on A52 for complex visual feats and in this case, we felt that tapping into the company's artistic expertise to add snow effects to this spot would be an interesting way to back-up the 'Why live in one dimension' tagline.'" See the work here and wallow in a full regalia of HD resolution, digital-matte, CGI, camera tracking data, geek-speak.

While digital manipulation is nothing new, we'd say A52 did an excellent job making winter look like winter. We wonder how much better it might have looked if the original work was a bit more inventive than "another winding road car commercial." Although, with almost every car commercial following this exact approach, there's got to be some very convincing research out there indicating this is the approach to take. Anyone care to share?

by Steve Hall    Jan- 5-06    
Topic: Commercials

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