Articles on this Page
- 05/10/13--22:48: _RadioShack Throws S...
- 05/08/13--08:54: _Ad of the Day: Volk...
- 05/08/13--10:15: _Huggies App Sends Y...
- 05/08/13--11:51: _Be a Better Son or ...
- 05/09/13--03:57: _Traction Puts User ...
- 05/09/13--05:10: _Wolfenstein Trailer...
- 05/09/13--05:19: _Boyz II Men Will Ma...
- 05/09/13--05:40: _Flight Attendant in...
- 05/09/13--09:06: _The Story Behind 'T...
- 05/10/13--04:31: _Coke Dispenses Dani...
- 05/10/13--04:41: _Chalk Billboard, Re...
- 05/10/13--05:02: _Can You Hear the To...
- 05/12/13--20:22: _Adweek Project Isaa...
- 05/13/13--07:10: _Carve Watermelons a...
- 05/13/13--13:18: _Oreos Can Tame Any ...
- 05/13/13--19:25: _How BBH Perfected t...
- 05/13/13--19:34: _The Ad Smackdown: F...
- 05/14/13--07:28: _JCPenney Says Thank...
- 05/14/13--08:27: _Bug Spray Traps Tho...
- 05/14/13--10:25: _Ad of the Day: Old ...
- 05/08/13--08:54: Ad of the Day: Volkswagen
- 05/08/13--10:15: Huggies App Sends You a Tweet Whenever Your Kid Pees in His Diaper
- 05/09/13--03:57: Traction Puts User Experience at the Core
- 05/09/13--05:19: Boyz II Men Will Make Love to Your Sweet Old Navy Jeans
- 05/10/13--04:31: Coke Dispenses Danish Flags Hidden in Its Logo
- 05/10/13--05:02: Can You Hear the Tone Hidden in This 'Vision Test'?
- 05/13/13--07:10: Carve Watermelons and Master Butt Ping Pong at Windows Training Camp
- 05/13/13--13:18: Oreos Can Tame Any Bloodthirsty Beast in New 'Wonderfilled' Campaign
- 05/13/13--19:25: How BBH Perfected the Twist Ending for the Year's Best Beverage Ad
- 05/13/13--19:34: The Ad Smackdown: Facebook Vs. Google
- 05/14/13--08:27: Bug Spray Traps Thousands of Insects on Gross, Sticky Billboard
- 05/14/13--10:25: Ad of the Day: Old Spice
#UWANTIT? #NOUDONT. Grasping for relevance in the youth market, RadioShack serves up a strange, suggestive spot featuring gals in bikinis and plastic wrap dancing to Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" and caressing phallic Pill speakers from Beats by Dr. Dre. The ad, which also stars Thicke, is basically a rehash of the artist's uber-popular "Blurred Lines" video, and ties in with a promotion that lets customers access a remix when they buy any Beats by Dr. Dre device. "I know you want it" is a key line from the song, and #UWANTIT is the title of the ad. The level of silliness on display makes me want to beat myself in the head with a package of D batteries (only $12.99 at The Shack!) Yes, the clip has quickly amassed 700,000 YouTube views. But RadioShack shouldn't get too excited about that, because I'm betting the numbers say more about the tune's smooth mojo and the sexy imagery on display than any renewed excitement about the retail brand. RadioShack comes off like an unhip, balding, middle-aged dude desperately trying to prove he's down with the kids—and failing badly. (Being unhip, balding and middle-aged myself, I should know!) The dying chain's desire for reinvention is understandable, but how tossing off quick-buzz pop-culture crap like this is supposed to help it survive over the long haul beats me.
When done right, wryly positioning a product benefit as a potential liability can be a great formula for comedy. So it is with this new U.K. Volkswagen spot, which promotes the automaker's fuel-saving Start/Stop technology as a boon to future generations … just not to the one sitting in the backseat.
The ad, from Adam&EveDDB in London and Outsider director James Rouse, opens on the streets of a deserted city at night, as a father is seen driving around with his infant son—evidently trying to soothe him to sleep. The only problem is the Tiguan's Start/Stop feature, which causes the engine to shut off whenever the vehicle comes to a complete halt. This saves gas, but doesn't do any favors for our fidgety baby—who wakes up and starts crying at every red light. When the light turns green, the engine starts up again and the baby drifts back to dreamland.
The acting here is great. The father has a William H. Macy-like hangdog look, with months of sleep deprivation written all over his face. And the baby is incredible, too. (You get what you get from babies, as VW well knows, making this particular performance even more remarkable.) The kid seems perfectly on edge, and the way he smacks his lips when he goes back to sleep is hilarious. They're at war, these two. And what Dad thought was a strength—his environmental consciousness—has turned out to be his Achilles heel. Few ads so adroitly moderate their own green impulses—which works great on parents, for whom managing the chaos of their own personal environment is at least at important as caring for the larger one.
New parents in particular will love this ad. Few topics instantly draw them in quite like their offspring's sleep habits (or lack thereof). Kids' ability to sleep in cars is also a cornerstone of parenting folklore—one that McDonald's also tapped into with its charming spot set at a drive-through. This VW ad is charming, too, but has that underlying sense of desperation (perfectly offset by its almost sarcastically happy soundtrack) that only adds to its richness.
Someone should tell Dad, though, that you can turn off Start/Stop with the push of a button.
Communications Manager: Natalie Lamont
National Communications Manager: Kirsten Stagg
Marketing Director: Rod McLeod
Project: Think Blue
Agency: Adam&EveDDB, London
Executive Creative Director: Jeremy Craigen
Creative: Nikki Lindman
Creative: Toby Brewer
Planner: Tom Lloyd
Media Agency: Mediacom
Media Planner: Chantelle Ratner
Agency TV Producer: Lucy Westmore
Account Director: Jaimie Jennings
Managing Partner: Jonathan Hill
Business Director: Paul Billingsley
Account Manager: Tom Trevelyan
Production Company: Outsider
Director: James Rouse
Producer: Benji Howell
Audio Postproduction: Factory Sound
Postproduction: Work Post
Media: TV, Cinema, Online
Today in useless marketing-driven product innovations, we have Huggies TweetPee, a little sensor dreamed up by Ogilvy Brazil that affixes to your baby's diaper, syncs with an app and tweets at you whenever it detects pee (in the form of a higher humidity level). This will work great for people whose parenting consists of the occasional diaper change in between marathon Twitter sessions. Evidently (it's somewhat hard to tell from the case-study video) the app also keeps track of the number of diapers you go through, and alerts you when you're running low. That may be the whole idea here—getting you to blow through diapers quicker by prompting you to change them every time the kid pees a little bit. In that regard, TweetPoop might be more useful than TweetPee—getting the kid out of a poopy diaper faster has its benefits. (You could call it "DM Your BM.") The problem, of course, is you don't need a fancy sensor to detect that. Via Adverblog.
UPDATE: Huggies got in touch and clarified that the clip-on humidity sensor is only a concept device and will not be available to purchase. The app is apparently intended simply to help parents in their purchasing of diapers. Here is the statement from Huggies:
"Huggies Brazil is excited to announce we will launch TweetPee in Brazil this July—a new iPhone app that is designed to help parents better keep track of the volume of diapers they use and provide easy integration with online retailers to make life easier for busy moms and dads. In conjunction with the TweetPee app's debut in Brazil, feature videos will highlight the experiences of 10 moms and dads who use the app to streamline and more effectively plan for their purchases.
In the promotional video referenced, the clip-on humidity sensor is intended merely as a concept device to help showcase these 10 parents' experience with the app. It will not be made available for purchase, nor are we suggesting parents are unable or too busy to notice when their babies' diapers need changing! Please visit huggiestp.com.br for more information as news develops."
Sometimes it takes a little boost to be better to your mother. It takes a legally binding contract. Luckily, that's exactly what Mother New York has come up with to celebrate Mother's Day—the one holiday when this ad agency is particularly pressed to deliver the goods. In the video below, learn about the "Momtract," a legal agreement in which you give control over one aspect of your life back to your mother—like the old days. The website explains further:"Momtract gives power over one aspect of your life to your mother, restoring her to the position of authority she enjoyed when you were a child. Follow our easy 5-step process, and start enjoying the emotional benefits of America's premier legally binding gift." The gag is somewhat reminiscent of last year's "labor reparations" Mother's Day stunt from the same agency, which offered a helpful form for you to "calculate and repay the expenses you incurred as a fetus."
Who (l. to r.) Paul Giese, technology director; Adam Kleinberg, CEO; Theo Fanning, executive creative director
What Interactive and advertising agency
Where San Francisco offices
When Adobe wanted to reach college kids about its range of products, Traction came up with a game called “Real or Fake,” where students determined the authenticity of an image posted on the client’s Facebook page. Students who manipulated it got to see a tutorial and free product trials. Over half of the Facebook visitors to the page played the game. That work underscores Traction’s belief that if user experience is at its core, all advertising is interactive. “We work holistically about ideas, whether online or offline,” said CEO Adam Kleinberg. “We grew up at the intersection of psychology and technology.”
I'm not sure what I was expecting from a retro gaming remake about Nazi robot armies, but this trailer surely isn’t it. (And that's a good thing.) Agency AKQA and production house Psyop have created a slick, compelling and enigmatically dark preview of Wolfenstein: The New Order, scheduled for release later this year. Wolfenstein is one of the oldest franchises in gaming, dating back to Castle Wolfenstein in 1981. Its most famous installment, 1992’s Wolfenstein 3D, allowed you to kill Hitler while he stomped around in a robotic suit, which was about as enjoyable as it was ridiculous. In the trailer below, though, we see a much darker and more ominous take on the Nazi robot, which is apparently the Reich’s foot soldier of choice in this alternate history’s 1960. The 100-second teaser clip is definitely a fine piece of commercial cinematography, but I remain skeptical that the new Wolfenstein—or any game about a guy shooting giant, goose-stepping robots—can live up to this level of gravity.
Client: Bethesda Softworks
Michael Powell – Creative Director
Akira Takahashi – Creative Director
Ed Davis – Account Director
Paul Chang – Senior Account Executive
Andy Haynes – Senior Motion Designer
Production Company: Psyop
Jon Saunders – Creative Director
Lucia Grillo – Executive Producer
Jen Cadic – Producer
Jon Saunders – Designer
Edward Laag – Designer
Kenesha Sneed – Designer
Ram Bhat – Designer
Cass Vanini – Editor
Robin Nishio – Storyboard Artist
Eban Byrne – Lead Technical Director
Pat Porter – Animation
Kitty Lin – Animation
Eric Chou – Animation
Dan Fine – Modeling
Bryan Eck – Modeling
Jordan Harvey – Modeling
Zed Bennett – Rigging
Eban Byrne – VFX
Fabio Piparo – VFX
Jonah Friedman – Lighting
Andy Gilbert – Lighting
Keith Kim – Lighting
Oliver Castle – Lighting
Andy Hara – Lighting
Brandi Diminio – Lighting
Michelle Ko – Lighting
Nick Tanner – Lead Compositor
Bo Kim – Compositing
Tim Regan – Compositing
Tobey Lindback – Compositing
Nick Tanner – Flame Artist
Music Production Company:
COPILOT Strategic Music + Sound
Jason Menkes – Music Producer
Ravi Krishnaswami – Music Arranger
Sound Design Company: Defacto Sound
Dallas Taylor – Sound Designer
Ken McGill – Sound Designer
Samson Neslund – Sound Designer
Music Licensing: Brandracket
Strap that lap belt tight, because Old Navy’s newest airline-themed ad will rocket you all the way back to 1994. Boyz II Men are the newest retro celebs to star in Crispin Porter + Bogusky’s zany spots for the retailer, which most recently tapped the supposed T-shirt expertise of Mr. T. In the new ad, 1990s R&B romancers Boyz II Men reinterpret their hit “I’ll Make Love to You” as an ode to white jeans. It's good to see them back on the air and still rocking the ivory suits, but given the fact they only have two lines of lyrics and a bunch of “loolooloo” noises, it’s probably for the best the trio gets cut off a bit early. They’re definitely an improvement over the perennial ad cameos by Mr. T, but in this series of pun-packed Old Navy spots, I’d say the best of the lot is definitely Jennifer Love Hewitt and her “flirtation device,” which you can check out after the jump.
The Prague office of Lowe & Partners heads into some dangerous airspace with its ad for the "relaxing drink" Zenonade, which apparently motivates a flight attendant to fantasize about all her passengers dying. Admittedly, I too find myself thinking we're all going to die whenever I get on an airplane, but I doubt this ad was delving into my paranoid subconscious so much as intentionally courting controversy. As a provocative ad for a new product, however, the spot seems to fail on two fronts: It doesn't do much to explain the product, and it hasn't even drummed up the outrage its creators had intended. (Agency CEO Martin Lochmann seemed disappointed when he told the Huffington Post that he “expected it to be worse.”) A related spot for the drink, which you can watch after the jump, avoids threats of imminent death—unless you happen to be a piece of Ikea furniture.
It’s been viewed a million times since last night alone and has single-handedly resurrected the voice of troubled literary genius David Foster Wallace, bringing his words to a global audience that might not even recognize his name. And it was all done without permission. “This Is Water,” a cinematic interpretation of Wallace’s bleak-yet-inspiring 2005 commencement address at Kenyon College, has quickly become one of the week’s most passed-around videos. It was created by The Glossary, a small video production shop in Los Angeles. We wanted to know the story behind the video, and the team that created it was kind enough to answer a few questions. Check out the video below and our Q&A with the creators after the jump.
The following email Q&A from AdFreak was answered by The Glossary's Matthew Freidell, director; Allison Freidell, producer; and Jeremy Dunning, producer.
AdFreak: How did the idea come about to create a short film from "This Is Water"?
The Glossary: After suffering through a particularly awful commencement address at his own college graduation, Matt came across DFW’s speech online and it really struck a chord. Ever since then, he’s listened to it periodically to remind him of the core message. A short film seemed the perfect way to spread this message to a wider audience.
This is a pretty ambitious undertaking, trying to enhance something that's already so powerful without visuals. Did you ever worry that even with all your skills, you might not do it justice?
Absolutely we were worried! Wallace has an extremely passionate following and we knew it wouldn’t be easy to adapt the original version. We couldn’t use the entire 20-minute speech since we didn’t have the budget, and that length of video is tough to release online. We had a ton of long conversations about what to cut, and it was probably the most difficult part of the whole process. However, we encourage anyone who enjoyed our video to seek out the complete text and experience the full message.
What did you have to do to get permission to use the audio?
We had little to no budget for this project and we knew that the publishing house was going to be really skeptical of our little company’s request to utilize his work. We had faith in our vision for the video and that once it was complete they would see that this was something made with the best intentions in mind. We are in no way making any money directly from this video; it was purely a passion project. While we had high hopes for this, we could have never seen all of this attention coming. Sometimes it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission.
Did you give yourself a budget to work from?
The whole budget came out of our pockets, but we had an amazing group of friends who helped us along the way. The cast worked for a small amount knowing that the project was something we were incredibly passionate about.
Were the talent auditioned, or are they just friends of the agency?
The main actors auditioned; everyone else was cast based off their look. We got extremely lucky with the talent of the cast. They all were able to communicate a lot with no dialogue and not much screen time.
For many of the commenters on your video, this seems to be their first exposure not only to this speech but also to Wallace. Was that part of your goal, to introduce him to a new generation?
Our main goal was to expose people to the content of the speech. But as members of a generation that is often referred to as “generation me,” we felt like this message actually changed the way we thought about life in a way that went beyond the typical cliched advice into something actually useful.
Prior to this video, your YouTube clips tended to top out around 1,500 views or so, with one or two exceptions. What's the impact been like for your business, having one of your creations go so viral so fast?
It’s a little too early to tell, but as a tiny company in an industry filled with so much talent and competition, it’s extremely difficult to get your work noticed. We feel like we’ve done that with this video and we’re over the moon with the response. But we’re always looking for what’s next, so we’d welcome anyone who enjoyed “This Is Water” to get in touch with us.
The full text of David Foster Wallace's This Is Water can be purchased in book form on Amazon. To learn more about the team behind the video, visit TheGlossary.com.
When Coca-Cola discovered that part of its classic logo looks like the Danish flag, the brand (or at least agency McCann Copenhagen) decided to make an interactive airport ad that dispenses flags. Why? Apparently it's a Danish tradition to greet arriving travelers by waving flags, and Coke wanted to help make a bigger show of the fact that passengers were arriving in Denmark, ranked as "the happiest country in the world." You can watch the results in the case study below. I personally doubt this hidden flag was a real "discovery" on Coke's part so much as a forced connection, but it's a nice gesture.
If the crowds seem larger than usual at a certain McDonald's in Warsaw, Poland, chalk it up to the menu. We're talking about a billboard-sized menu, hand-drawn in multicolored chalk twice daily by graffiti artist Stefan Szwed-Stronzynski as part of a campaign cooked up by the local office of DDB, art studio Good Looking and Krewcy Krawcy Productions. The goal, per the creative team, is to capture "the freshness of McDonald's food" and the breadth of its offerings in a highly flexible way. I'd say they've succeeded, but no matter what this McD's is serving, the menu itself is the special of the day.
Don't believe everything you see and hear in Draftfcb Toronto's deceptively clever TV and interactive poster campaign for Union Hearing Aid Centre. Known for its tricky advertising, the client's new "vision tests" display letters in successively smaller fonts in typical eye-chart fashion—but there's quite a surprise in store. Those who can read the final line of tiny type on the poster and in the commercial are told that there's probably nothing wrong with their eyesight. But they might want to visit Union and get their hearing checked, because a "really annoying, really loud high-frequency sound" has been playing throughout the test, and those with sharp ears would've reacted to it and likely sought relief before they'd finish the exam. (The hearing center ran similar spots last year.) During the eye-test phase of the TV spot, I couldn't hear the high-pitched sound; but at the end, with the ruse revealed and the tone cranked way up, making it detectable to just about everyone, the message got through loud and clear. And given how many YouTube commenters mention being annoyed by the tone through the whole spot, I suppose I probably should book an appointment. Via Media in Canada.
As technology roils and transforms media and marketing, innovation, while essential, has become basic table stakes. Iterative tactical thinking is evolutionary, as technology forces a revolution. To stay truly relevant and survive, invention must be the industry’s focus. A burgeoning maker culture, conceiving and creating true firsts, is here—and the establishment has come to the sober realization it can be disrupted at anytime by anyone with a great idea and armed with the ultimate leveler: digital technology. So, agencies have established in-house studios where staffers are encouraged to tinker with concepts as well as arduinos. An early champion of this inventor culture is Lori Senecal, chairman and CEO of Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners, who helped guide the creation of Adweek Project Isaac, in which we search for and award the smartest inventions in the business. Senecal, as jury chair—along with fellow judges Michael Caruso, editor in chief of Smithsonian Magazine; Joanne Wilson, angel investor and advisor; Beth Comstock, svp and CMO of General Electric; and Joe Rospars, founding partner and creative director at Blue State Digital—considered 500 entries across 35 categories. (Judges abstained from voting in categories in which their own companies were entrants.) What follows are gold winners in 29 of those categories, one of which will be honored with the inaugural Gravity Award for overall excellence during the Clio Awards ceremony Wednesday, May 15, at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.
View the Winners here:
Marketing & Advertising | Media | Digital | Best Practices
Gape in awe at these impressive "Windows 8 Training Camp" videos that dramatize product benefits through the goofiest of competitions. In "Makeup," three women have 10 seconds to apply cosmetics, with results that are hilariously mixed. In "Piano," we are introduced to two men who balance work and play by tickling the ivories while playing pingpong with their buttocks. They’re actually quite talented. And in "Watermelon," three skilled martial artists carve and suggestively finger some watermelons. Microsoft told bloggers the online-only videos were created specifically for Asian markets and were only posted to the global Youtube channel by mistake, but we're not buying it. While I don't speak Korean or Chinese, commenters who are native speakers of both have said on The Verge that the actors in the ads are actually speaking a fake language that's just gibberish, which makes you wonder if the whole odd-Asian vibe and vague backstory for the spots are signs that these were intended to be viral videos from day one. More spots after the jump.
Closing the books on a yearlong anniversary celebration double-stuffed with buzzworthy work, Oreo is now launching "Wonderfilled," a colorful new campaign celebrating sharing. The TV spots, Oreo's first from The Martin Agency since signing with the agency late last year, are infectiously catchy thanks to the custom soundtrack featuring Adam Young of Owl City fame. The premise is that passing along an Oreo could probably turn all manner of murderous beasts into kind-hearted souls. Who knew? "The ability to wonder is something we all share, but too often forget or ignore," the agency writes in its description of the campaign strategy. "Wonderfilled captures the universal human feeling that kids are naturally so good at, yet adults need to be reminded of: a sense of wonder in the world." Check out the anthem spot below, along with a shorter version and a print piece after the jump.
IDEA: Twist endings aren't always the best idea for commercials. Ads need staying power, and relying too much on a surprise can ruin them after the first viewing. BBH London got around this quite skillfully in its wonderful new spot pitching Robinsons juice as the thirst quencher after a day of energetic family play. Yes, there's a major reveal at the end: The two boys we've seen playing together turn out not to be friends but father and son. (The dad is depicted as a child until the final frames to show he is his son's friend as well as his father.) But the agency sprinkled clues to their real identities throughout the spot, making subsequent viewings almost as rich as the first. "As a parent, when you play energetically with your kids, you're more like best mates. This gave us an interesting way into the schmaltzy, familiar area of 'kids and parents having fun together,' " said BBH creatives Matt Moreland, Chris Clarke and Hamish Pinnell, who answered questions as a group via email. Disguising the father as a kid was the eureka moment, they said, but "the trick was not giving the game away too early."
COPYWRITING: It's all there if you look closely. The one boy throws rocks farther into the river than the other; he teases him about girls; he even shouts "I am your father!" (à la Darth Vader) as they play lightsabers with sticks. "Subtlety was key," said the creatives. "We created lots of carefully orchestrated clues … that we wanted people not to pick up on the first time around. Getting the order right was a constant headache during editing." Major clues surface toward the end, as the one boy puts the other to bed. "We loved the idea of the boy carrying his pal up to bed and tucking him in. It's not just a nice, tender moment, it's also something only a father would do—an emotional way of giving the game away," said the creatives. "Night, dad," the boy says, and finally we see the father. "Night, pal," he replies, and switches off the light. "It's good to be a dad. It's better to be a friend," says on-screen copy next to a bottle of Robinsons orange juice. The tagline is: "Play thirsty."
ART DIRECTION/FILMING: Directing duo Si & Ad of Academy Films shot the spot over three days in Cape Town, South Africa. The creatives wanted the visual look to feel "timeless" so that both kids and parents could relate to it. The directors pushed for more spoken interaction in each scene to enrich the narrative. "We always knew there was going to be a bit of dialogue in the film but were really surprised when the first edit contained so much dialogue," the creatives said. "Suddenly it wasn't just an ad, it was a little film."
TALENT: The agency looked far and wide in casting the lead roles. "We scoured the country until we found Tom and Callum," the creatives said. "You'd never guess that they'd only just met. They immediately struck a bond that continued throughout the shoot. The boys really didn't need that much coaching—just the odd reminder to stop singing Dizzee Rascal all day long!"
SOUND: The music is the 2011 track "July" by Youth Lagoon. "The trick was to find something with emotion and that would build and wouldn't get in the way of the boys' dialogue," said the creatives. "Lyrical tracks just made the film feel a bit flat and a little obvious." All the dialogue was recorded on location, giving the sound an immediacy that would be hard to capture in the studio.
MEDIA: The spot broke May 4 during Britain's Got Talent on ITV1. It is airing nationally in 30- and 60-second versions, and online.
Agency: BBH, London
BBH Creative Team: Matt Moreland, Chris Clarke, Sarah Hardcastle, Elliot Shiels
BBH Creative Directors: Hamish Pinnell, Justin Moore
BBH Producer: Glenn Paton
BBH Strategic Business Leads: John Harrison, Becky Russell
BBH Strategist: Lilli English
BBH Team Director: Alex Monger
Production Company: Academy Films
Director: Si & Ad
Executive Producer: Lizie Gower
Producer: Dom Thomas
Director of Photography: Barry Ackroyd
Postproduction: The Mill
Editor, Editing House: Joe Guest @ Final Cut
Sound: Nick Angell
Can Facebook make a commercial for itself without turning people off?
While not every response so far has been a thumbs down, the social site’s messaging certainly appears primed to draw a fierce public drubbing. Yes, it’s relatively new to consumer advertising, but Facebook does have at its disposal the top-flight creative services of agency Wieden+Kennedy.
Facebook’s early stumbles stand in stark contrast to the early ad success of another data-gobbling tech player that initially eschewed marketing: Google.
Facebook declined to comment. But here’s a sampling of ads from each Internet giant, and a look at where their strategies succeed—and fail.
View the ads here:
Is JCPenney stocking up on slacks with extra room in the crotch? I'm inclined to think so, judging from its ballsy move of releasing a feel-good commercial from Young & Rubicam thanking consumers for "coming back" to the troubled retailer just two weeks after an ad apologizing for missteps under ousted CEO Ron Johnson. Many web commenters have posed the obvious question: "Isn't it too soon to say thank you?" Sure is. Just do the math, Einstein! Penney is set to release first-quarter earnings this week that reflect a 16 percent sales slump following a $4.3 billion loss in sales last year. In fairness, the chain has begun making changes under new CEO Myron Ullman, reviving coupons, sales and its St. John's Bay collection. And its recent mea culpa and #JCPlistens social outreach campaign have been well received. Still, two weeks of anything—and Penney offers no particulars—won't right this ship. Heck, even two good quarters probably wouldn't be enough. That doesn't mean I don't applaud JCP's moxie. For all its muted, mom-centric imagery, the new spot bespeaks a certain swaggering style—i.e., "We're back because we say we're back!" At least there's some substance here, with Penney returning to its roots and focusing on core values. That beats another troubled retailer's strategy of tossing Robin Thicke and phallic symbols into a video and hoping for the best.
This new billboard in Milan for an insect spray also serves as a huge pest strip, thanks to a few layers of aerosol glue. The glue was applied in the shape of an Orphea can's spray arc, which filled in as bugs got stuck in it. The visual effect of that little mosaic of suffering is quite unique, and now all of Milan's summer tourists will see and understand the potency of aerosol glue. And maybe Orphea, too. Agency: Publicis Italy. Via The Denver Egotist.
He's the man your man could shave like.
Terry Crews, the most notable Old Spice guy these days—last seen in the amusing Muscle Music interactive campaign last fall—is back in a pair of new Old Spice spots pushing the brand's new shave gel.
The product may be new, but the approach from Wieden + Kennedy is familiar. A shirtless Crews shouts a lot while all sorts of absurdist mayhem erupts around him. In one spot, he is verbally accosted by a pair of talking socks, a talking waffle iron and talking solar panels, all arguing about who is newer—only to be one-upped by Terry's new son (and of course, the shave gel). In the other, Crews emerges from the giant beard of a long-hospitalized man who's desperately in need of a shave.
As usual, the digital elements of the campaign are also robust. For today only, the brand has taken over the YouTube masthead and is asking visitors: "Are ________ newer than Old Spice Shave Gel?" Entering any noun takes you to a website which declares that the noun "ain't newer than new Old Spice Shave Gel."
Old Spice partnered with Getty Images on the site, which uses a Getty application to pull in photos based on the noun—and can thus generate millions of unique sites.
Client: Old Spice
Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.
Creative Directors: Jason Bagley / Craig Allen
Copywriter: Eric Fensler
Art Director: Max Erdenberger
Senior Producer: Lindsay Reed
Account Supervisor: Liam Doherty
Executive Creative Directors: Joe Staples / Susan Hoffman
Head of Production: Ben Grylewicz
Production Companies: Fatal Farm
Director: Zachary Johnson / Jeffrey Max
Editorial Company: Fatal Farm
VFX Company: Fatal Farm
Mix Company: Joint
Mixer: Charlie Keating
Creative Directors: Craig Allen, Jason Bagley, Matt O'Rourke
Copywriter: Shaine Edwards
Art Director: Max Erdenberger
Account Team: Liam Doherty
Executive Creative Directors: Joe Staples / Susan Hoffman
Digital Designer: Ken Berg
Creative Technologist: Stephen Schieberl
Interactive Producer: Andrew Abraham
Director of Digital Production: Pierre Wendling
Art Buying: Heather Smith Harvey
Interactive Studio Artist: Oliver Rokoff
Development Partner Company: By HOOK
Lead Developer: Norm McGarry
Partner/Producer: David Evans