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Breaking News in Advertising, Media and Technology

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    Who Joanne McKinney (l.), chief strategy officer; Michael Burns, managing partner; Ann Morton, COO; and Jim Wilday, partner
    What Advertising agency
    Where New York

    After spending a quarter of a century at Saatchi & Saatchi, Mike Burns took his extensive experience on global accounts, especially General Mills, and walked out the door with 17 staffers in what was then one of the industry’s most buzzed-about disputes. After his plans for an agency centered on General Mills’ business didn’t materialize, the Burns Group was hatched in 2007 on its namesake’s dining room table—with zero clients. But the agency grew to take on major marketers like Post cereal, ChapStick, Pfizer, Gorton’s seafood and Yellow Tail. The shop’s focus on insights and planning is key: It is connected with an online consumer community called “Brand Informers,” half a million strong, which can be called upon whenever a marketer needs input.


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    Photo: Alfred Maskeroni

    New gig President, Source Marketing
    Old gig Managing director, Havas Worldwide New York
    Age 43
    Twitter @mittonrivas

    What drew you to Source Marketing?
    I was at Havas for eight years, and we weathered a lot of turns and twists over that period. I was at a point where we’d been through the squeaker days, and we had won a number of pieces of business, and the agency was gaining a lot of momentum. Ironically, that’s when the conversation with a friend of mine started about the opportunity at Source, and I was just really intrigued. I think smaller, more nimble agencies—it’s sort of their prime time.

    Why would you say that now in particular is an important competitive time for smaller agencies?
    There are a lot of entrepreneurial clients and CMOs and even vps out there who are looking to have an impact and make a difference. More of the clients I talk to, they want that personal, senior attention, and they want that constant thoughtfulness that agencies provide. But I think as you get bigger and bigger that’s harder to do. As you get bigger, the more clients you have, the more relationships you have to nurture and the more talent you hire to facilitate that. I’m really very hands on in the way that I work. At Havas I also ran multiple pieces of business as I helped steward the agency. It’s really important that you stay close to the problems that the agency is trying to solve for clients, and it’s the best way to figure out how to be the kind of agency that will deliver the best results. In a smaller environment you can be more nimble and entrepreneurial, you can think laterally and in a lot of different ways.

    What was your trajectory into the advertising world?
    After college [Ohio Wesleyan] where I studied international business, I moved to New York and DMB&B was hiring. I went to work there, and in the early stage of a career you’re just a sponge. I worked on this project with the head of strategy, and I thought the psychology of things was so interesting. Honestly, if I wasn’t in advertising, I would either be a psychologist or own a flower shop. They sound like completely different paths, but they’re both at the heart of people and how they think and, in the case of the flower shop, what brightens their day. My brain lit up when I saw that translate to work in a creative environment. I just thought it was really awesome. I left DMB&B and went to Grey. Everyone told me that the best training was working on Procter & Gamble.

    So working at Grey was like grad school?
    In some ways it was because at the time the way P&G was working with their agencies—I don’t know if they still do it this way—you were a core part of the team. I did a job swap with a brand manager. He came and sat in my desk and did my job for a week and I went and sat in his. So it was an amazing opportunity to be trained in marketing, communications, touch points and insights. It wasn’t about “Oh, I’m just going to go and produce an ad.” It was about learning about the brand and the people who love the brand and how those things come together to tell a great story.

    What’s been your focus since joining Source?
    Who are our people? How do they think? Where do they have a natural propensity? Are we spending more time in the direct space? Social space? Trying to figure out what the thread is between all of these things. I believe it’s no longer a business of channels. It’s not about the channel, it’s about what does this person need or want. How does this brand help them achieve that, and how can we tell a story that will show that we get that?

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    This PSA by AMV BBDO for the British Coast Guard, titled "Every Second Counts," pairs Hallmarky imagery of children playing on the beach with audio from a frantic 999 emergency call in which three children were being dragged into the water by a powerful undertow.

    "Conditions on our coastline change in seconds," the ad warns.

    Many ads like this would have included footage of those changing conditions. But in some ways, keeping things quietly sunny and calm is even more jarring against the terror of the audio, and reinforce the point better than added drama would have.

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    The mad scientists at Oreo are laughing maniacally as they cook up adorable little monsters—called "nomsters"—in a tiny, spooky little lab for Halloween.

    Beginning today, fans of the Mondelez cookie brand will get to see a new nomster created each day in short videos set in the 1800s-style Oreo Laboratorium. Fans will be asked to "Name the Nomster," and the best names will be made into custom digital content posted by Oreo later each day.

    The content is appropriately bite-size (the first video is just 11 seconds long), which of course is perfect for Facebook and Instagram.

    The 32-by-64-inch set, featuring more than 100 different props—many of them handmade—was created by designer Lori Nix, whose work in miniature we last saw in this gorgeous short film for Bamboo Sushi. Oreo also partnered with Castelli Models to craft more than 40 stages of models for the stop-motion videos.

    Check out the first nomster above, and contribute a name on Oreo's Facebook page. (Suggestions so far include Dunkfluffula, Count Candy Corneo, Vamporeo and Capn Fluffy Butt.) We've also got some exclusive behind-the-scenes photos below.

    Last year for Halloween, Oreo paid homage to popular Halloween horror movies through Vine recreations.

    Client: Oreo
    Senior Associate Brand Manager: Kerri McCarthy

    Agency: 360i
    Creative Directors: Aaron Mosher, David Yankelewitz
    Art Director: Kelsie Kaufman
    Copywriter: Frank Bertino
    Executive Producer: Phil Pessaro
    Producer: Ethan Brooks
    Account Director: Josh Lenze
    Senior Strategist: Mike Jacobson
    Account Manager: Megan Falcone
    Community Manager: Katya Kotylar
    Community Supervisor: Namrata Patel

    Production Company: Dream Machine Creative
    Director: Andrew Wonder, Lainey Dubinsky
    Producer: Alon Simcha
    Executive Producer: Dylan Steinberg
    Director of Photography: Fletcher Wolfe

    Visual Effects: Konrad & Paul
    Visual Effects Supervisor: John Christon

    Sound: Silver Sound
    Sound Designers: Robin Shore, Cory Choy, Luke Allen, Bryan Osborne, Ted Robinson

    Set Design: Lori Nix, Kathleen Gerber, Nix & Gerber Studio
    Character Fabrication: Dan Castelli, Castelli Models

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    If you're looking for a "no more tears" kind of shampoo commercial, I'd skip this nearly five-minute Chinese ad for Procter & Gamble's Rejoice from Leo Burnett Hong Kong. It's all about making viewers cry over true love … and silky, shiny hair!

    Filmed in lush black and white by director David Tsui, the spot—a sensation in Asia, with this version reportedly being viewed more than 40 million times in the past month—tells the story of a young couple on the brink of divorce. The wife agrees to separate on one condition—that she and her husband share one hug a day for a month.

    The first hug takes place at a rooftop lounge, high above the city, where he proposed; the second on a windswept pier where he professed his love; the third at a secluded spot where they first kissed.

    We're about four hankies in by this point. Will they get back together? C'mon, dude. Thanks to Rejoice, she's got smooth, luminous hair, so stop being such a jerk!

    In the end, the commercial notes that 3 million couples divorced in China last year (official statistics put the number around 3.5 million, an almost 13 percent increase over 2012), while there were about 100,000 reconciliations. The spot is part of the brand's "Smooth Heart Touching Moments" campaign, supported by the #IBelieveInLoveAgain hashtag.

    Can a shampoo ad boost those reconciliation numbers? Terence Lam, P&G's hair-care marketing manager for Greater China, says: "We believe that no matter how complicated relationships can be, there's always a way to smooth things up. As a brand devoted to smoothness and love, this is a position worth taking, having a strong point of view on this cultural phenomenon."

    On the one hand, the commercial is poignant and well made. Though manipulative in the extreme, it packs more emotional punch than your typical American romantic date film, and it has clearly made an impact for the brand. That said, there's something about equating hair-care products with love and relationships—let alone divorce—that doesn't sit right. It feels regressive, and perhaps even talks down to its audience. (The brand has been supportive of Chinese women, though, working with a local organization to help them start businesses.)

    What bugs me most is the way the guy soulfully strokes his wife's hair with each hug. OK, this is, ultimately, a hair products commercial, and at first it seems natural. But it grows distracting and creepy. He seems to have some kind of follicle fixation. Maybe she'd be better off washing him out of her hair after all.

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    Parents grow increasingly frustrated as Siri-type phone assistants misunderstand their requests in a pair of 60-second Advertising Council PSAs from Publicis Kaplan Thaler.

    The goal is to build empathy for kids with learning and attention issues—watch the ads to see how—and to introduce Understood.org, a cooperative effort among several nonprofits providing access to support and resources. A print ad reinforces the theme, showing a notebook page with a child's writing that's been erased many times, while the words "I want to be understood" remain.

    "Put yourself in children's shoes, and you can truly understand their frustration," says agency creative director Larissa Kirschner, whose young son struggles with such issues. It's a sharp approach, skipping familiar images of kids struggling to read or comprehend their schoolwork in favor of a deeper narrative about the importance of communication and connection.

    "The crux of the campaign is that understanding is everything," Kirschner says.

    That message comes through loud and clear.

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    In the market for a Steampunk Buttscope, a Bananaganizer or some Medical Test Results Fortune Cookies? You can find these wondrous creations and more over at SkyMaul.

    Sometimes a form of advertising becomes so ubiquitous and renowned that parody versions can stand alone as their own money-making franchises. Such is the case with SkyMaul, the book-length parody of SkyMall magazine that's just published its second edition along with a microsite showing some of its more outlandish items.

    While you might wish some of the things are real, like the $500 Condo Pony (cheap at twice the price!) or the $40 set of dunce hats for rocks (the perfect thing to give as a follow-up for a Pet Rock), the only thing you can buy on the site is the book from Amazon.

    But let us wax poetic for a moment about the enduring popularity of advertisement parody. From every iteration of "Keep Calm and Carry On" you can imagine to sketch comedy's enduring love for parody TV commercials, people love fictional ads for fake things often more than they love real ads.

    Sometimes people love them so much that advertisers will make a real ad for a real product that looks like a fake ad, like GE's overblown, amazing tribute to Jeff Goldbum's affinity for pauses, or that time Liquipel created a real commercial so fake cheesy that people thought it actually was fake.

    But whether art is holding up the mirror to advertising or advertising is taking a photo of what it sees in that mirror, you're sure to waste a few amusing moments today reading through the hilarious copy and photoshop lunacy over at SkyMaul.

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    Does OK Go release albums? Like, full-blown records with multiple songs on them? I don't know. I don't care. Their videos are enough for all of us.

    Japanese creative agency Mori is behind this one. (You may remember creative director Morihiro Harano, who created a giant xylophone in the woods in that 2011 smartphone ad.) Like all of OK Go's videos, it's amazing. I would put it up there with the great Rube Goldberg device video for "This Too Shall Pass," but maybe not quite as high as the truly awesome collaboration with dance troupe Pilobolus on "All Is Not Lost."

    Anyway, here it is:

    Those amazing little motorcycles are the Honda UNI-CUB, a strange device with some kind of robotic gyroscope inside that keeps it from falling over, even when the guys are leaning back and forth on them. (To be fair, OK Go are samurai warriors when it comes to the art of not falling over.) I don't want to give away the ending, but it gets nuts from there.

    At any rate, the rock world's answer to Cirque du Soleil is back. Hooray for them, and for us. And also for the drone or helicopter or whatever is filming this thing, because wow.

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    You thought Coca-Cola was getting personal when it rolled out 250 bottle labels featuring people's first names. Well, Diet Coke just went and individualized 2 million bottle designs.

    Coca-Coca Israel created the campaign, with help from Gefen Team, Q Digital and HP Indigo. (In fact, it was Indigo, which was founded in Israel, that helped Coke solve the enormous production challenges around the "Share a Coke" campaign when it first rolled out in Australia in 2011.) For the Diet Coke project—which echoes a similar stunt by Absolut in 2012—a special algorithm led to a unique design technique that allowed millions of designs to be completely auto-generated.

    The resulting product conveys to "Diet Coke lovers that they are extraordinary by creating unique one-of-a-kind extraordinary bottles," said Alon Zamir, vp of marketing for Coca-Cola Israel. (Dr Pepper, whose whole campaign is built around being one of a kind, is going to be pissed about this.)

    The concept nicely extended to the ad campaign, which featured hundreds of uniquely designed billboards, as well as point-of-sale stunts that sold T-shirts and other merchandise featuring your specific bottle design.

    The genius of "Share a Coke," of course, was how personalized it felt, rather than how personalized it actually was. (Your first name actually isn't very unique at all—and if it is, it sure wasn't on a Coke bottle.) Still, the Diet Coke idea is triumph, too—the designs look fantastic, on top of it all—even if it won't generate the same level of buzz.

    Check out more images below, along with a case study video showing the process.

    Via PSFK.

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    Real-estate companies love haunted-house pranks. We saw it earlier this year with this gotcha video from Denmark. And now, digital realtor Trulia is embracing scare tactics with its own hidden-camera prank for Halloween.

    Trulia, with help from Olson Engage, held a haunted open house—inviting people in to see a property that was rigged to mimic paranormal activity. Check out the video below to see the amusing reactions—capped off by the sudden appearance of a dead grandma in a bed. (This place won't be on House Hunters anytime soon.)

    Trulia has done a few other things for Halloween this year, including updating the local maps on its website to show the most likely spots to find zombies, vampires and ghosts (using its existing data on things like cemeteries). It also created the "Housing Scare Report" infographic below, which shows, among other data, the kinds of things that scare people off from buying particular houses—like having "666" in the address or knowing about a previous death in the home.

    Click the infographic to enlarge.

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    Subaru's "Memory Lane" ad from Carmichael Lynch, with the hippie grandma teaching her granddaughter to love nature, has been out for more than a month. But it's still airing, and is one of the more remarkable ads of the year—a spot that manages to both embrace and make fun of the brand's persistent stereotypes, in a way that's utterly charming.

    The ad, which takes place on a road trip to Woodstock, memorably ends with three generations of the same family literally hugging a tree—with the parents, who can't quite believe what's happening, hilariously stuck between the enduring idealism of the grandmother and the wide-eyed innocence of the granddaughter.

    "They're hugging the tree," the mother says, watching from the car, in the scene before. (The spot is nothing if not self-aware.) The father, meanwhile, can't even muster that much commentary at the end, so bewildered is he by his mother's clichéd behavior.

    It's a great little story, perfectly written, acted and directed (by Lance Acord of Park Pictures). But it wasn't without its risks. After all, directly addressing the brand's reputation as a car made for tree huggers—a pretty loaded term—can be dicey.

    Indeed, the YouTube comments are amusingly political.

    "I like the idea of cool old people rather than just the Fox News watching scared old people who are afraid of their own shadow," writes one viewer. Says another: "Whole family actually hugging a tree...... for the love of God make it stop. Liberal Marxist whack jobs have thrown this country into a tail spin!"

    But it fact, the ad smartly plays things down the middle. The tree scene is both earnest and silly, and the parents—who are the Subaru owners here, after all—are both drawn to and repelled by it, in a way that's believable.

    It takes a lot of confidence for a brand to lightly ridicule the very reputation its core customers have built around it. And in fact, the agency almost didn't go there.

    "Generational ads are really hard to do, and even tougher to do well," Carmichael Lynch chief creative officer Dave Damman tells Adweek. "Add to that the huge challenge of cashing in some of the 'tree hugger' brand equity and spending it on the Summer of Love, 1969 mind-set, and it almost becomes something that if not done exactly right, you'd surely want to avoid. But it's a genuine, compelling story, and because of this brand and what it stands for, it makes complete sense that the car they own is a Subaru."

    Damman adds: "Much like the importance of the 1969 music festival, it's a territory we felt can only be visited once, so it had to be the right story, and the right emotional fit. It's rare that in one spot you can have nostalgia, heartfelt generational connections, and everyday 'That's my life' humor. Identifying with the adventurous free spirit not only inspired the concept, but helped a great deal in bringing it to life. Lance Acord, the director, had an immediate connection—he proudly claimed that the grandma character was just like his own mother, and himself as the dad."

    Executive creative director Randy Hughes puts it most succinctly: "Hugging the tree was something we felt we could laugh at and love at the same time," he says.

    As for the YouTube critics who are gloating that the Woodstock festival took place in Bethel, N.Y., not Woodstock—"They got this dead wrong," says one—well, they're going to be furious to learn the ad was actually filmed at a dairy farm in Northern California.

    Client: Subaru of America
    Agency: Carmichael Lynch
    Chief Creative Officer: Dave Damman
    Exec Creative Director: Randy Hughes
    Associate Creative Director, Writer: Conn Newton
    Associate Creative Director, Art Director: Michael Rogers
    Head of Production: Joe Grundhoefer
    Senior Exec Content Producer: Brynn Hausmann
    Director of Business Affairs: Vicki Oachs
    Account Service Team: Brad Williams, Krista Kelly, Sarah Larsen
    Production Company: Park Pictures
    Director: Lance Acord
    Executive Producer: MaryAnn Marino
    Executive Producer: Jackie Kelman Bisbee
    Line Producer: Pat Frazier
    Director of Photography: Lance Acord
    Edit House: Final Cut
    Editor: Eric Zumbrunnen
    Assistant Editor: Scott Butzer
    Post House: Volt Studios
    Online Artist: Steve Medin
    Assistant: Sarah Thomas
    Telecine: Company 3, Sean Coleman
    Audio Mix: BWN Music, Carl White
    Sound Design: BWN Music, Carl White
    Artist: The Bones of J.R. Jones
    Track: "Hearts Racing"
    Composer: Jonathon Linaberry
    Music Supervisor: Jonathan Hecht, Venn Arts
    On-camera talent: Pat Caldwell, Rita Obermeyer, Chloe Bleu, Scott Rinker
    Voiceover Talent: Justin Beere, Scott Rinker

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    We're approaching the holiday where little kids dressed as Marvel superheroes and the cast of Frozen will descend upon neighborhoods across the U.S., amped up on sugar, requiring that adults fork over "good candy" (read: any candy bar found in a checkout line) lest they be deemed cheap for buying "bad candy" (DumDums? What is this, the bank?).

    Crest follows up last year's charming and funny Halloween ad, in which the brand experimented with disgustingly healthy candy, with the spot below—highlighting the effects of giving 50-pound humans an enormous amount of sugar. (Publicis Kaplan Thaler created both spots.)

    The little girl in the piñata costume at the 12-second mark steals the show, while the man conducting the experiment deadpans beautifully. The chaos soon begins, and between the loud music, loud screaming and cringe-worthy scene of little kids all trying to eat the same giant gummy bear, it feels like being stuck in a pizza party at Chuck E. Cheese.

    I've never been so grateful for a mute button.

    The end copy, however, ties it all together: "Halloween candy may have an effect on your kids, but not on their teeth. Thanks to Crest, their teeth are covered."

    It's all somehow simultaneously awful and fun.

    Client: Crest
    Agency: Publicis Kaplan Thaler

    Halloween Video:
    Chief Creative Officer: Rob Feakins
    Executive Creative Directors: David Corr,
    SVP Creative Director: Amy Carvajal
    Creative Director, Copy: Sarah Coker
    Creative Director, Art: Mariana Dutra, Alex Shulhafer
    Executive Producer: Noelle Nimrichter
    Account Team: Angela Pasqualucci, Cheryl Loo, Kate Kim, Fuming Cao, Ilyssa Harbatkin

    Halloween All Team:
    Chief Creative Officer: Rob Feakins
    Executive Creative Directors: David Corr,
    SVP Creative Director: Amy Carvajal
    Creative Team, Copywriter: Sarah Coker, Malissa Johnson
    Creative Team, Art Director: Mariana Dutra, Alex Shulhafer, Jess Killian
    Executive Producer: Noelle Nimrichter
    Account Team: Angela Pasqualucci, Cheryl Loo, Kate Kim, Fuming Cao, Ilyssa Harbatkin
    Strategy: Dave Bovenschulte, Jhanell Biggs
    UX: Zack Kurland
    Analytics: Will Parker, Gino Abbate, Tulika Singh
    Interactive Producer: Jane Kim
    Project Manager: Nicole Soler

    Director: Brad Morrison
    Production Company: Slim Pictures
    Executive Producer: Tom Weissferdt

    Editorial: Fluid
    Post Producer: Michelle Seidenfrau
    Audio Post: Mr. Bronx
    Mixer: Dave Wolfe

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    Nearly two dozen current and former National Football League stars appear in powerful new PSAs condemning domestic violence and sexual abuse.

    They look straight into the camera as they say "No more" to excuses and rationalizations that perpetuate the problem. These include "Boys will be boys," "He just has a temper," "Why doesn't she just leave?" and "She was asking for it."

    New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning bookends a 60-second clip, which also features league exec Troy Vincent and Pittsburgh Steelers star William Gay, both of whom have suffered abuse tragedies in their lives. The work was developed by Y&R and produced by Viacom and the Joyful Heart Foundation. The latter's founder and president, actress Mariska Hargitay, was among the spots' directors.

    "This is a monumental step toward change," Hargitay tells USA Today. "If badass NFL heroes are coming forward to talk about these issues, I guarantee you it is going to give inspiration and permission to young boys to step up in a new way. Love in a new way, protect in a new way, and to be a man in a new way."

    The NFL, plagued by scandals involving Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson and others, is donating $3 million a week in air time for the PSAs. The player spots broke during last week's Thursday Night Football telecast on CBS. "No More" spots featuring celebrities like Courteney Cox, Amy Poehler and Ice-T broke a month ago.

    The campaign's plain talk is compelling, and so is its stark visual style. Against a plain white background, the players establish an instant connection with viewers. That makes it hard to look away when the subjects challenge us to face tough issues and do the right thing.

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    How do you sell American cars in 2014? By tricking people into first thinking your goods are Japanese or German.

    Chrysler is launching a tongue-in-cheek campaign for its 200 model with TV ads featuring voiceovers that start in foreign languages, touting qualities commonly associated with cars built outside the U.S. Then, the narrators register faux shock that the car cruising across the screen is, in fact, a Chrysler. Reliability and performance are now "American things," the ads explain, in a bid to quickly to throw the brand's past self under the bus.

    Created with agency Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., the spots also feature scenery meant to cue foreign settings, like cherry blossoms and koi ponds for Japan (actually shot in Detroit) and a knockoff Autobahn for Germany (shot in Seattle). Chrysler is also promising a Swedish version focused on safety (filmed in San Francisco and Seattle).

    They're branded with the tagline "America's Import," also slapped on the Bob Dylan Super Bowl ad from earlier this year. It's a more explicitly patriotic evolution of the "Imported from Detroit" tagline introduced by Eminem's ad for Chrysler during the 2012 Super Bowl, and reinforced by Clint Eastwood's halftime ad the following year.

    But since it's apparently going for a mix of laughs and puffed-up American pride, it's really a shame there's no Anchorman movie about to come out—then the company could ride Ron Burgundy's coattails again.

    Credits below.

    Client: Chrysler
    Project: "Ready to Take on the World"
    CMO, Chrysler Group, Fiat Group Automobiles, Head of Fiat Brand: Olivier
    President and Chief Executive Officer, Chrysler Brand: Al Gardner
    Director, Head of Global Advertising, Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram: Marissa Hunter
    Head of Advertising, Chrysler Marketing: Melissa Garlick
    Chrysler Brand Advertising Specialist: Danielle DePerro

    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.
    Creative Directors: Aaron Allen, Kevin Jones, Michael Tabtabai
    Copywriters: Smith Henderson, Brandon Davis ("Three Times" only)
    Art Director: James Moslander
    Producer: Bob Wendt
    Production Assistant: Julie Gursha
    Interactive, Social Strategy: Sarah Biedak
    Strategic Planning: Andy Lindblade
    Media, Communications Planning: Alex Barwick
    Account Team: Cheryl Markley, Lani Reichenbach, Jourdan Merkow
    Business Affairs: Dusty Slowik
    Project Management: Jane Monaghan
    Executive Creative Directors: Joe Staples, Mark Fitzloff
    Head of Production: Ben Grylewicz

    Production Company: Reset
    Director: Andrew Douglas
    Executive Producer: Jeff McDougall
    Line Producer: Betsy Oliver
    Director of Photography: Alwin Küchler

    Editing Company: Joint
    Editors: Matthew Hilber ("Japanese Quality," "German Performance"), Nicholas Davis ("Swedish Safety")
    Assistant Editors: Dylan Sylwester, Kristy Faris
    Post Producer: Leslie Carthy
    Post Executive Producer: Patty Brebner

    Visual Effects Company: Joint ("Japanese Quality" "German Performance – Autobahn" "German Performance – Three Times")
    Flame Artist: Katrina Salicrup
    Smoke Artist: Zack Jacobs
    Visual Effects Producer: Alex Thiesen
    Titles, Graphics: Brad Simon, W+K Studio Designer; Peiter Hergert, W+K Motion Designer

    Visual Effects ("Swedish Safety" only)
    Flame Artists: Simon Brewster, Andrew Eksner, Sarah Marikar, Katrina Salicrup
    Smoke Artist: Zack Jacobs
    Titles, Graphics: Brad Simon, W+K Studio Designer; Peiter Hergert W+K Motion Designer

    Song: "The Fire" – The Roots

    Mix Company: Joint
    Mixer: Noah Woodburn
    Producer: Alex Thiesen

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    More sweet. Less scary. That's the promotional campaign, not the ingredient list.

    The perennial Easter favorite Peeps continue to try to become a year-round candy with these "peepified" illustrations for Halloween. The simple, colorful drawings are part of an ongoing campaign dubbed "Every Day Is a Holiday," launched earlier this year to introduce Peeps Minis, diminutive flavored versions of the original chicks. (They're less than half the size of the flagship product, and come in bags, not the traditional cellophane-front flat boxes).

    The airy sugar dumplings, made by confectioner Just Born, haul in an estimated 70 percent of their business at Easter and only a fraction on other holidays like Christmas and Valentine's Day. There are ghost and pumpkin Peeps on shelves now, but they've never moved as briskly as springtime's puffy chicks and bunnies.

    The campaign for Peeps Minis, from New York ad agency The Terri & Sandi Solution, has included digital images on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, with Peeps-centric drawings for obscure holidays like Mutt's Day, Make Someone Laugh Day and National Singing Telegram Day. Fifteen-second TV ads celebrate National Take Your Pants for a Walk Day, Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day and other "holidays." (Go ahead, Google them).

    And about those ingredients: mainly sugar, corn syrup and gelatin. Boo!

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    If you're a woman, this video is not going to be that enlightening.

    It documents some of the creepier instances of verbal harassment—from more than 100 total—that a woman received during 10 hours of silent walking around New York City. You know, the typical stuff that happens to you as a women when you decide to go anywhere alone. It even captures one super-creepy dude who walks alongside her in silence for long enough that we start to worry about her safety.

    Oh, I could tell you stories. Every woman I know could tell you stories. We could tell you that it doesn't matter what you wear. In this video, Shoshana Roberts is wearing jeans and a T-shirt. It doesn't matter if you try not to look at anybody or get your best bitch face on. As you can see, Roberts doesn't attempt to draw attention in any way. And it doesn't make you feel complimented. It makes you wonder if they're going to take it any further—a little butt pat, a gentle grab, all-out sexual assault?

    By the end, Roberts looks exhausted, anxious and fed up. But of course, she'll get to go through it all again the next time she walks out the door.

    Rob Bliss Creative made the video for Hollaback!, an organization committed to ending street harassment by documenting and exposing the harassers. And boy, is there a lot to document. And it turns out Roberts has since been hit with a slew of online rape threats, and Hollaback! is filling police reports on her behalf.

    That's not too surprising, because harassment doesn't stop in the street. From doxxing or swatting women to sending unsolicited dick pics to your Tinder matches, the Internet has given users more ways to threaten, harass and otherwise scare the pants off people for their own personal satisfaction.

    If you want to help, you can document your own experiences with Hollaback! Or let people you know who promote street harassment know that it's not OK. Seriously, it's not OK.

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    We rely on our hands to get us through our various daily projects, whether it's typing on a computer, creating works of art or instructing others to follow a plan. Now, HP wants us to use the power of our paws in the digital space.

    HP's Sprout is a new immersive computing platform that scans and senses objects in proximity of the device to allow people to create in real-time 3-D. In simpler words, you can put things directly on the touch mat and, thanks to a projector above, wave your hands around to virtually mold the design you want on the screen. As the ad shows, that includes spilling coffee beans on the flat surface to get that effortlessly strewn artistic look.

    Watch the ad below, and then give your hands a pat on the back for all the work they do.

    Client: Hewlett-Packard
    Spot: "Hands of Time"
    Agency: 180LA
    Production Company: Park Pictures
    Director: Vincent Haycock
    Director of Photography: Mattias Montero
    Head of Production: Anne Bobroff
    Executive Producers: Jackie Kelman Bisbee, Mary Ann Marino
    Producer: Valerie Romer
    Original Music: human

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    Gap's new tagline, introduced a few months back, is "Dress normal." But the retailer knows your family is anything but—particularly at the holidays.

    Having launched the new positioning with David Fincher in August, Gap moves on to another Hollywood director—Sofia Coppola—for a stylish and quirky holiday campaign from Wieden + Kennedy in New York.

    The four spots are endearingly weird, with storytelling that's more about momentary glimpses into the charms and foibles of family life than traditional plots. The first two, "Gauntlet" and "Mistletoe," are the strongest and will air on TV. The former shows a girl arriving home (in a crazy striped sweater) to a bustling house at Thanksgiving; the latter is about an awkward moment under the mistletoe.

    Two others, "Crooner" and "Pinball," will run online. "Crooner" is the most staged of the bunch, with a little boy lip-syncing "Cry" by Johnnie Ray to his family. And "Pinball" is the romantic entry in the series, with a woman playing pinball in a restaurant as her boyfriend waits for her in a booth.

    The ads close with the line, "You don't have to get them to give them Gap." That's a slanted and quite refreshingly take on the notion of holiday togetherness—love without understanding being, after all, a fairly accurate description of many people's holiday experiences with family.

    It also highlights, maybe better than the Fincher ads did, just what the "Dress normal" idea is all about. It's not about being normal—it's about being yourself, which can be quite peculiar indeed. And Gap, in all its normcore glory, can be part of your personal style, particularly for millennials. Or least, this campaign tells gift givers, don't assume it can't be.

    The rest of the job is just to make the ads as hip seeming as possible, and Coppola does a nice job with that. The music is a big part of it. "I Got Stripes" by Johnny Cash in the "Gauntlet" spot is just fantastic, and the "Mistletoe" and "Pinball" soundtracks are solid, too (featuring "I'm Not Ready for Love" by Promise and "Deep Down" by Hazel and the Jolly Boys).

    There are print ads as well. Check them out below, along with statements from three Gap executives about the campaign.

    Seth Farbman, Gap's global chief marketing officer:
    "We wanted the campaign, and the films in particular, to focus on the best part of the season—family and friends. While the holidays look different in every home across the country, Sofia has brilliantly translated Gap's snapshots of these authentic family characters to the screen. Our aim was to create a campaign that would be very warm, very honest and very Gap. And even if you don't always get your family, our message this season is that it's easy to give them Gap."

    Rebekka Bay, Gap creative director:
    "Sofia is a great fashion icon and helped us bring our fashion themes to life alongside the storytelling of family fun for the festive season. The campaign celebrates our spirited and optimistic crazy stripe collection, along with candy-colored Fair Isle sweaters, cool biker jackets and a collection of party dresses. The Gap holiday collection is more giftable, more romantic, more optimistic, more fashionable and more Gap than ever."

    Steve Sunnucks, Gap global president:
    "In the fall, we started our 'Dress Normal' story with another great director, David Fincher, and issued a rallying cry to dress how you feel most comfortable, and 'Dress like no one's watching.' Now Sofia Coppola has helped us bring to life the second chapter of 'Dress Normal' through our holiday films with the same authentic and honest tone."

    Client: Gap

    —Spots: "Crooner," "Pinball," "Gauntlet," "Mistletoe"

    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, New York
    Executive Creative Directors: Susan Hoffman, David Kolbusz
    Creative Directors: Stuart Jennings, Susan Hoffman
    Copywriters ("Mistletoe," "Pinball," "Crooner"): Laddie Peterson, Al Merry
    Copywriters ("Gauntlet"): Laddie Peterson, Al Merry, Heather Ryder
    Art Directors ("Mistletoe," "Pinball" "Crooner"): Jaclyn Crowley, Jeff Dryer
    Art Directors ("Gauntlet"): Jaclyn Crowley, Jeff Dryer, Morgan Sheehan
    Head of Content Production: Nick Setounski
    Producer: Alison Hill
    Director of Brand Planning: Erik Hanson
    Brand Planner: Hayley Parker
    Director of Interactive Strategy: Marshall Ball
    Interactive Strategist: Jordan Schenck
    Account Team: Tamera Geddes, Molly Friedman, Patty Ehinger
    Business Affairs: Lisa Quintela

    Production Company: The Directors Bureau
    Director: Sofia Coppola
    Executive Producer, Managing Director: Lisa Margulis
    Executive Producer, Head of Production: Elizabeth Minzes
    Line Producer: Youree Henley
    Director of Photography: Eric Gautier

    Editing Company: Consulate
    Editor: Chad Sipkin
    Post Executive Producer: Alan Lopez
    Editorial Assistants: Ryan McCally, Elizabeth Navarro

    Visual Effects Company: The Mill
    Lead Flame: Jamin Clutcher
    Producer: Clairellen Wallin

    Telecine Company: CO3
    Colorists: Tom Poole, Stefan Soonenfeld

    Mix Company: Sonic Union
    Mixer: Steve Rosen

    Music Supervision Company: Able Baker

    Music: "Pinball"
    Song: "Deep Down"
    Artist: Hazel & the Jolly Boys

    Music: "Crooner"
    Song: "Cry"
    Artist: Johnnie Ray

    Music: "Mistletoe"
    Song: "I'm Not Ready for Love"
    Artist: By the Promise

    Music: "Gauntlet"
    Song: "I've Got Stripes"
    Artist: Johnny Cash

    —Print and OOH

    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, New York
    Executive Creative Directors: Susan Hoffman, David Kolbusz
    Creative Directors: Stuart Jennings, Susan Hoffman
    Copywriter: Laddie Peterson
    Art Director: Jaclyn Crowley
    Account Team: Tamera Geddes, Molly Friedman, Patty Ehinger
    Project Manager: Kellie Pederson
    Art Buyer: Molly Dowd
    Photographer: Frederike Helwig
    Business Affairs: Lisa Quintela
    Director of Brand Strategy: Erik Hanson
    Brand Strategist: Hayley Parker
    Director of Interactive Strategy: Marshall Ball
    Interactive Strategist: Jordan Schenck

    Retouching Agency: 150Proof&Co
    Retoucher: Chris McClelland

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    Planning to dress up in fake ebola hazmat gear for Halloween? That's awfully douchey, don't you think?

    Nonprofit humanitarian group Doctors of the World has an idea, though. Why not join the "More Than a Costume" campaign and help pay for real protective equipment used by medical professionals battling ebola in West Africa?

    "Health workers needs a new hazmat suit for each of their rotations, and estimates indicate that over 1 million suits will be needed in the next six weeks," says the organization.

    For $1 you can donate a glove, and $5 buys a mask. You can donate a hazmat suit for $250, and throw in a helmet for $500. (Or text EBOLA to 501501 to donate $10. C'mon, you'll spend more than that on Halloween candy.)

    The initiative was developed by Publicis Kaplan Thaler ​in partnership with MediaVest and MSLGROUP. Pro-bono print and digital ads are running this week in The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and elsewhere. "Here it's a costume. There it saves lives," says one headline.

    Props for leveraging the ebola costume craze in such life-affirming fashion. They've created a program that lets people contribute to the greater good, even those who plan to clomp around in bogus boots and breathe through phony filters on Halloween.

    See the full ad below.

    Client: Doctors of the World

    Agency: Publicis Kaplan Thaler
    Chairman: Linda Kaplan
    Chief Creative Officer: Rob Feakins
    Creative Director: Carlos Figueiredo
    Associate Creative Director/ Art Director: Einav Jacubovich, Josh Horn, Corel Theuma
    Associate Creative Director/ Copywriter: Cuanan Cronwright, Jeroen De Korte, Salina Cole
    Chief Communications Officer: Tricia Kenney,  Corporate Communication Manager, Erin Creagh
    Chief Production Officer: Lisa Bifulco
    Global Managing Director: Jeremy Bowles
    Chief Digital Officer: Dawn Winchester
    Creative Director of Digital Design: Sabine Roehl
    SVP Technology Director: Alec Cumming
    Interactive Production: Sabrina Abhyankar, Miranda Ossolinski, Wojo Wieronski, Fatima Osman
    Quality Assurance: Earl Willis, Marquita Dennison
    Analytics: Emily Burns, Tanvir Hannan
    Strategy: Erica Herman, James Quinlan, Sara Knee, Nicole Sands, Nika Rastakhiz
    Senior Project Manager: Jonathan Manitsky
    Account Team: Marc Burkhalter, Mandy Antoniacci, Andrew McCree, Jake Weitzen, Aneika Fermin, Maxwell Gallin
    Print/Art Production: Victor Basile, Veronica Williams

    Photographer: Torkil Gudnason
    Production Company/ Photographer Rep: Artist & Agency

    Production studio: Robert Rosenblatt, David Shand, Dominick Governali, Gen Oldfield, George Bixby, James Du, Paul Deangelo, Nick Mazzo, Peter Boemio Henna Kathiya, Douglas Zaner
    Finance Controller: Siretta Pearson

    MediaVest EVP, Publishing and Digital Director Investment and Activation: Robin Steinberg
    Razorfish Senior Media Director: Kerri Vickers
    Razorfish SVP/Client Engagement: Robert Silver
    MSL Director of Marketing & Corporate Communications: Michael Echter
    MSL President, North America: Paul Newman
    MSL Account Team: Renee Wilson, Tim Koch, Jenifer Slaw, Stephanie Herzfeld, Jessica Spano

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    "Dumb Ways to Die," the famed Australian train-safety campaign from 2012, has done a couple of encores for special occasions. First it did a Valentine's Day ad. And now it's done a little choose-your-own-adventure Halloween special.

    Should you trick or treat the little monsters who come to your door on Friday? Well, both approaches have their risks, it seems—for candy giver and candy seeker alike. "Be safe around Halloween ... and trains," says the copy.

    Agency: McCann Melbourne.


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