Whenever we receive an email that reads, "It appears that a group of users who love Pop Secret popcorn have launched their own website called http://www.PopSecretMountain.com, featuring short films for the product, wallpapers, ringtones, and even a character named Kaptain Kat. The web site says they aren't making a dime. It's a great example of the power of users to support a brand without any resources and make creative content," we immediately groan and say, "Yea, right" and proceed to publish the thing anyway.
It isn't usually expected that a restaurant be so honest in its ad campaign as to admit the product it serves kills animals but that's exactly what part of this Chipotle campaign does in a humorous manner. The campaign tag, "Honest Ingredients," ha s double meaning. It refers to Chipotle's goal of serving only meat that is "naturally and humanely raised and free of added growth hormones and antibiotics." It also refers to the company's progress towards these goals as reported in the print advertising, which states that given current availability and market pricing, "all Chipotle pork, about one-half of Chipotle chicken, and about one-third of Chipotle beef meet these standards." Check out all the creative here.
You can even create your own billboard copy at this site which has nothing to do with the company other than to have some fun with the ads.
The only true ketchup, Heinz, is, again, extending its talking label campaign. This time, in celebration of the company's 130th anniversary, by offering people the chance to create their own custom printed labels by visiting MyHeinz. At the site, people can choose from three bottle types, select or custom-create a message, pay for it and have it shipped to their home. We're guessing there'll be some pretty stiff editorial policing to keep the kooks from messing up the offering with dreck.
Coke Zero, those zeros behind the fake blog Zero Movement thing are at it again. As if moving down a check list of social media tactics, the company, after checking off "blog," has moved on to video and has uploaded three videos to YouTube in which two hired lawyers/actors supposedly punk random, unsuspecting lawyers by telling them they want to sue Coke Zero because it tastes so much like Coke. Yup. Coke Zero has gone out and created "faux consumer generated content" as one commenter called it in hopes the viral gods will bless their efforts. To be fair, the videos are OK. Though you can instantly tell they are staged, they are amusing even if they have that "we're really trying hard to get into this social media thing so bear with us" feel. There's three videos here, here and here (though we can't get this last one to load.)
BoingBoing points to a Wired Music Blog post that highlights some changes to YouTubes terms and conditions that could give them complete control and ownership over anything that is uploaded to their site. In theory, the blog points out, YouTube could sell any uploaded video or take a musical track and sell it, royalty-free. This change will make certain organizations think twice before handing over all revenue making ability derived from created content. It's nice to get wide distribution of your work but it's also nice to maintain some control over it as well.
Oh it was only a matter of time before someone, sickened by advertisers' oversimplification of everything, namely Staples' claim that they make business easy, before the Easy Button hacks arrived. Al Cohen, who created the hacke button which spews forth nastyisms, says, "Advertising agencies think that they can cram any amount of factitious crap down the gullible throats of the public. We need to remind them we are a heck of a lot smarter, and can process far more complex equations, just given half a chance." Touche. You can listen to Cohen's creation here but the connection is agonizingly slow. We'll host it elsewhere once we get the entire file.
Adland tells us about some stop motion station idents 86 the Onions created for Fuel TV which were made with a sharpie type pen, paper and scissors and filmed with a camcorder. 86's office manager, along with animator Andrew Dolan created the first ident, showed it to 86 Creative Director Chad Rea who said he loved it he pitched it to Fuel who liked it enough to pay for the creation of two more. Clearly, one does not have to work in the creative department to be creative.
Advergirl, fast becoming my new favorite ad blog (if she keeps writing things like this), has offered up, in reaction to reading a Church of the Customer post about Coke's apparent knee jerk foray into consumer generated media, a hilarious but ever so realistic meeting scenario between Big Agency and Big Client on New Media. Give it a read and it will sound like every meeting you've ever been.
Now we know why Coke reacted in such a blase fashion when all those Diet Coke/Mentos videos made the rounds. They didn't want to hype something that might take away publicity from them doing the exact same thing Mentos did: create a contest/site where people can submit videos and win prizes. Now we can envision what it must have been like for Coke spokeswoman Susan McDermott, in reaction to freaked out Coke execs running into her office screaming, "Kill this Mentos thing! Squash it! Eradicate it! We're about to commoditize a grass roots effort and take all the spontaneity out of it! And those fuckers over at Mentos are gonna beat us!" All the poor woman could do was toss off the geyser videos like they were inconsequential when, in reality, they were the very same thing Coke had planned in the first place. Let Mentos steal Coke's thunder? No way. But too bad. They already did.
Anyway, Coke is encouraging people to submit videos that align with the company's new tagline, "The essence of you." The videos will be rated by visitors and then judged by a collection of professional filmmakers. AQKA created the new site.
After Mentos caught wind of all this video that displayed explosive geysers when Mentos and Diet Coke are combined, Mentos said, "Cool. This is great." Coke, apparently suffering from some sort of refusal to believe the way advertising message are conveyed have changed dramatically said, "It's an entertaining phenomenon. We would hope people want to drink more than try experiments with it." Right. Anyway, Mentos is leveraging (oh, I hate that word) the trendlet and will launch the Mentos Geyser Video Contest in mid-July. As B.L. Ochman reports, the contest will encourage people to send in their best videos of the mixture and, presumably, win prizes for their efforts. Coke, on the other hand, will likely sit this one out but, at the same time, thanks Mentos for encouraging people to buy Diet Coke. Yup, it's a win-win.