Some campaigns are launched with high hopes only to be buried by more important things or simply bad planning. This is what we think happened with Wells Fargo's strange 2006 Backstage campaign, boasting music by no-name artists, a weird Stagecoach Island game, and a national tour (less Woodstock than a futile set of volleyball games).
We would never have found out about the campaign that didn't fly if we hadn't been to the bank yesterday, where we saw a card sticking out of a machine and went in to return it. The coiffed rep gushed, "good behaviour needs rewarding" and, after quizzing us on our FICO savvy, gave us a Backstage shirt. We harbor the suspicion there are about 4,000 said shirts in the backstage of the branch, but didn't say anything.
Of course, had we searched Adrants, we would have realized the game's been around in one form or another for over a year. Aren't we good?
- FOX has released its second Ignited Minds-created PSA in its Pause campaign which urges young people to stop and think before they make a stupid decision.
- Can we please stop with the pregnant stomach advertising auctions?
- Copyranter loves his girlfriend. We do too!
- Reaching new levels of un-informed stupidity, Boston's Mayor Menino now wants to ban all guerilla marketing from Boston, saying, "This nitwit technique has no place in our city."
- Now we have ads to promote Super Bowl ads. Sprint is running a teaser on YouTube for their Super Bowl activity.
We're not sure whether to laugh at or be concerned for Boston which got quite angry with Turner Broadcasting's for its ten city publicity stunt which, over the past two weeks, placed circuit board-like devices throughout each city, including Boston, to promote the the company's Cartoon Network Adult Swim Aqua Teen Hunger Force. Wednesday, all hell broke loose in the city of Boston when a commuter noticed one of the devices under a highway overpass above Sullivan Sqaure Station in Charlestown.
Bomb squads were called. Subways were shut down. Traffic was diverted. Newly seated Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick said, "It's a hoax and it's not funny." Boston Mayor Thomas Menino threatened legal action. All because a few promotional items were placed around the city.
You know when you watch a friend do something so stupid you wish you were never born so you could never have seen it? That's the feeling that flooded us when we saw Pizza Hut's latest social networking snafu: the uncool-but-cool pizza delivery guy.
Even if you forgive the use of Incubus' Drive, the pretentious article-preceding-name ("The Ted" - why not go all the way and call him The Tedster?) and the awkward "Who I'd like to meat?" joke, you have yet to account for gratuitous use of words like "babe-licious" and "par-tay."
Let's not forget the use of seedy come-ons like "In a court of girls, I'm the prisoner, not the judge ... and I've been very, very bad." The page in general is so wince-worthy that the very thought of pizza afterward made us throw up in our mouths. Way to go, imc2!
Get ready for the return of the proverbed naked girl in the ice cubes of liquor drink ads. Or at least single frame brand blips on television shows such as the Food Network's Iron Chef America. YouTube user H20ay32 posted this video capture of a recent broadcast during which a single frame of the broadcast consisted of the Golden Arches and McDonald's tagline, "I'm Lovin' It." While McDonald's did obviously sponsor the show with on screen billboards, this subliminal placement by a major brand is sure to create debate.
For client Vitae, the largest homeless shelter in the EU, McCann Portugal runs a rather unsettling holiday campaign in which people find a hollow-eyed homeless man in their trash bins with the appeal, "Help. So that no one have to come here for food."
Coming from a country in which passing change to the homeless is discouraged, we're hard-pressed to work out the call-to-action here. Do you give them a potted plant? Drive them to Vitae? Bake them a pie?
Spar, a restaurant sitting in a beach in Mumbai, India, recently conducted a guerilla campaign where large clam shells were strategically placed along the shore. When people reached down to open the shells they found a talk bubble ad that says "Looking for Seafood? Spars Seafood Festival."
Definitely something we'd take home to show the natives to demonstrate how much cooler every other country is besides our own. "Even the ads are better!" we hear ourselves boasting before some disgruntled relative bitchslaps us with the very shell we brought to brag about.
Cheers to Spar. It would have been awesome to throw in a plastic Mardi-Gras style pearl necklace, though. You know, make the whole festival idea seem more festive. It's kind of a buzzkill to open a huge shell and have nothing but a piece of paper to show for it. Oh, well. We'd still take it home.
An Adrants reader points us to Mackenzieheartsu, a boring but strangely watchable spoiled rich girl whose travails over her father's choice of car colour culminate in her getting what she wants and selling the old car for $9.99 on Ebay.
The last video drops a link to Anything Goes Deal, the latest Domino's promotion, a less-than-subtle hint likely to fly over the heads of everyone involved. Nobody in her comments section seems the wiser, anyway.
The campaign ran a couple weeks in December and looks over, which is too bad because we thought Mackenzie more convincing than LonelyGirl15 (who had suspiciously clean production skills). The comments she received indicate she made a vivid impression with people riding the Laguna Beach and OC waves.
Our favourite comment was "I hope your father sells you on Ebay in $9.90 and some poor Norwegian baker family buy you to bake fish bread whole of your life." We're not sure what fish bread is, but it sounds uncute and we have serious doubts Mackenzie would like its shade. It might not match anything in her room.
- A case is made for the implementation of browser level ad filtering.
- New York City cabs get decked out like bulls to promote televised bull riding on cable channel Versus.
- Sprint is on the hunt for a new creative agency for its $1.6 billion creative account.
- Advertising Age's Jonah Bllom likes the new Wall Street Journal.
- Qwest won't jack you up, mobsters recycle, Mini beats SUV in bullfight and more new commercial in Advertising Age's TV Spot of the Week.
- Merrill Lynch says U.S. ad spending will increase 2.9 percent in 2007. Traditional slows but isn't dead.
- In response to FOX's cancellation of The O.C., tweens and teens mourn throughout the nation.
- England has now banned the advertising of cheese during children's programming.
- The Webber Dance School is has placed footstep patterns on treadmills in health club so people can try to learn the steps while working out on the treadmill. Nifty, indeed.
For Sportlife, a chewing gum that's big in Holland, Netherlands-based Fresh Creation orchestrates a stunning promotion called "Can You Make it to the Pack?" in which a skater is beamed doing tricks across billboards, buildings and other cityscapes.
For those who lament street peace jarred by deviant boarders the beamvertised, totally heedless skater must have been especially distracting, along the lines of "Goddamnit, now they move through walls." Must have been frustrating.
We dig the campaign and envision a world in which beamvertising becomes as much a part of city life as the lights on Times Square. Can you see it now? It would be next to impossible to drive. We'd all just walk around with that deer-in-headlights look on our faces all the time.