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Breaking News in Advertising, Media and Technology

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    IDEA: All Olympic advertising tries, in some way or other, to soar. BBDO's new spot for Visa does so literally, thanks to U.S. Olympic ski jumper Sarah Hendrickson and legendary aviator Amelia Earhart. For Visa, the parallels between the two, both pioneers of flight, were irresistible—especially since women's ski jumping is finally an Olympic sport.

    The spot is part of a campaign introducing Visa's new global positioning, "Everywhere you want to be," a nip-tucked version of its old U.S. tagline, "It's everywhere you want to be." The concept of "everywhere" is meant to be both practical and aspirational. For the company, it's a promise; for the consumer, a state of mind.

    "This idea of universality, or everywhere, was something our founder Dee Hock was thinking about in the '50s—that people could exchange value regardless of border or currency," said Visa CMO Kevin Burke. "It's a bigger concept in our future world. It's about being able to pay across any device through any channel. Plus, there's the aspirational side of 'everywhere,' which is the place you want to be and how Visa can help you get there."

    COPYWRITING: The spot opens with Hendrickson, 19, lugging her skis to the take-off ramp. Earhart is heard in crackly audio from 1937.

    "Please know I'm quite aware of the hazards," she says. "I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failures must be but a challenge to others."

    Hendrickson speeds down the ramp and takes off, floating against the snowy mountains and blue sky in quiet slow motion. She adds her own voiceover: "This year, for the first time, women's ski jumping is an Olympic event. Now women get a chance to fly. I'm Sarah Hendrickson, and this is my everywhere." Morgan Freeman then voices the on-screen text: "Visa. Everywhere you want to be."

    Earhart "spoke very eloquently, and her words really fit a sport that was just opening itself up to women," said BBDO senior creative director and copywriter Grant Smith. Of the new positioning line, he added, "We really liked the idea of making it personal, and removing the 'It's' seemed to make it more flexible and revitalize it."

    FILMING/ART DIRECTION: Michael Spiccia shot the ad in two parts, filming Hendrickson last July at her training facility in Utah and then shooting on a mountaintop in New Zealand to get the winter backgrounds. The Mill seamlessly combined them.

    People are used to seeing ski jumping on TV; to grab their attention, the spot uses "camera angles never seen before, like the POV of Sarah going down the ramp or the vertigo-feeling camera placed on the top of the ramp looking down," said BBDO senior cd and art director Danilo Boer.

    Just as important: the quiet, meditative moments before the jump, which show Hendrickson not as an elite athlete but as a human being. She did only four jumps at the shoot.

    TALENT: Weeks after filming, Hendrickson, the 2013 world champion, suffered a serious knee injury, putting her Sochi 2014 plans at risk. But just this past week, she was named to the team after finally returning to practice. She needed barely any coaching for the voiceover.

    SOUND: Audio design was critical. "The sounds of the sport are amazing," Smith said. "The skis on the snow make a singular sound. In the air they act like blades of a helicopter, cutting the air in the same sort of way. Wind through metal—you can hear it." The agency captured much of the sound on site, then enhanced it in post, adding subtle accent tones for added drama.

    MEDIA: The :30 launched Jan. 11 on Fox's NFL coverage and will air through the Sochi Games.


    Client: Visa
    Spot: "Flying"

    Agency: BBDO New York
    CCO, Worldwide: David Lubars
    Executive Creative Director: Toygar Bazarkaya
    Executive Creative Director: Don Schneider
    SCD/Copywriter: Grant Smith
    SCD/Art Director: Danilo Boer
    Group Executive Producer: Brian Mitchell
    Executive Producer: Amy Wertheimer
    Executive Producer: Angelo Ferrugia
    Associate Producer: Georgie Turner

    Senior Account Director: Olivia Farr
    Account Director: Leland Candler
    Account Executive: Alicia Cacibauda
    Assistant Account Executive: Jennifer Lindelof

    Production Company: Arts & Sciences
    Director: Michael Spiccia
    Director of Photography: Ross Emery
    Producer: Ben Scandrett-Smith
    Line Producer: Pat Harris

    Edit Company: Work Post
    Assistant Editor: Ellie McNaughtan
    Editor: Rick Orrick
    Producer: Corina Dennison
    Color: The Mill – London
    Colorist: Seamus O'Kane

    VFX: The Mill, NY
    VFX Supervisor: Angus Kneale
    Executive Producer: Verity Grantham
    Senior Producer: Rachel Trillo
    Lead: Cory Brown

    Sound Design: Barking Owl Sound
    Executive Producer: Kelly Bayett

    Audio Mix: Sound Lounge
    Mixer: Tom Jucarone

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    Newcastle Brown Ale, which didn't buy airtime in Sunday's Super Bowl but is doing a wonderfully silly campaign about how it almost did, rolled out more content from Droga5 this week—including the hilarious endorsement below by Anna Kendrick.

    Just like last week's Newcastle trailer was the year's best Super Bowl teaser, Kendrick's performance will surely be the funniest among this year's celebs.

    Newcastle has done a lot of great stuff around this faux Super Bowl campaign, including a brilliantly self-mocking native ad on Gawker as well as bogus focus-group videos and another endorsement video starring Keyshawn Johnson.

    "It seemed like the obvious thing we had to do, and unfair to the world if we didn't," Newcastle brand director Quinn Kilbury said of the Super Bowl ambush. "The Super Bowl is great. The game is amazing, everyone loves the game. But it's become much more about marketing in some ways, and the over-the-top ridiculousness that surrounds it. I saw a lot of that when I was doing the real Super Bowl marketing stuff over at Pepsi, so it's close to my heart, and it is a little ridiculous sometimes. For a brand that likes to poke fun at marketing, we had to poke fun at Super Bowl marketing at some point."

    He added: "The brief to Droga5 was, essentially, hijack the conversation around Super Bowl marketing. We had a couple of ideas, but essentially that was it. At first I think we saw doing something around the game itself, but then we thought if you're going to do the Super Bowl, or the Super [Bleep], as we're calling it, you have to be true to the whole marketing show. You have to treat the commercial like it's a $100 million blockbuster."

    See the rest of the content below.

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    Heinz Ketchup walks the line between humorous and heartfelt in its first Super Bowl ad in 16 years, an extended version of which hit the web Thursday.

    The spot (see it below), by Cramer-Krasselt in Chicago, is heavy on images of feel-good Americana, as police officers, campers, bridesmaids and tailgaters hum the tune to "If You're Happy and You Know It"—punctuating each line not by clapping hands but by slapping the bottom of their ketchup bottles, trying to get the ketchup out.

    The ad isn't overly sentimental. Rather, it features several comic moments—including one in which a hot-dog vendor appears to end up in a full-body cast after spilling ketchup on some mobsters. And in the final scene, a grandmother looks mildly horrified after making a long farting sound while squeezing the last ketchup out of a plastic bottle.

    The tagline is, "Where there's happy, it has to be Heinz." The hashtag is #ifyourehappy.

    The ad (it will run as a :30; the online version is a :50) is part of a larger "Show Us Your Heinz" campaign encouraging consumers to send in photos of themselves with Heinz products. Through Feb. 23, specially marked ketchup bottles will have a QR code on the back that links to the campaign page. More than $400,000 in prizes will include five grand-prize trips to five major sporting events over the next year.

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    T-Mobile, the self-proclaimed "Uncarrier," is taking a contrarian approach to its Super Bowl marketing, too, waiting until the big weekend to reveal its commercials featuring Tim Tebow.

    The wireless carrier revealed two of its three spots on Friday morning after keeping them under wraps while many other advertisers, from Jaguar to Budweiser, were generating buzz on YouTube for much of this week.

    “We’re the ‘Uncarrier.’ We don’t play by the rules that everybody plays by,” said Peter DeLuca, T-Mobile’s svp of brands and advertising, explaining the company’s decision to hold back any Super Bowl teasers until today.

    Some would call it a risky strategy, but then T-Mobile seems to have shunned most traditional paths of late. Case in point: the company got rid of two-year contracts, a staple of the industry that tethers customers to their phone companies. The no-contract policy is T-Mobile’s hook into this year’s Super Bowl campaign, starring Tim Tebow.

    The company has three in-game spots—in the second, third and fourth quarters—riffing off the fact the former NFL quarterback was without a pro contract last year. T-Mobile’s longtime agency Publicis handled the third TV spot, but for the first time, the company teamed up with Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners to develop the first two in-game commercials.

    “T-Mobile is now teaming up with the ultimate free agent, Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow, for an unconventional, humorous Super Bowl TV commercial, showcasing the many benefits of contract freedom,” the company said in a statement.

    The ads, each 30 seconds long and accompanied by one pre-kickoff spot, show Tebow in pursuit of oddball activities—being a rock star, delivering babies, speaking at the United Nations—all because he’s not tied to a contract.

    The fourth quarter ad is not being pre-released, and won’t be available online until the game is under way on Sunday.

    Client: T-Mobile USA
    Chief Marketing Officer: Mike Sievert
    Senior Vice President, Brand and Advertising: Peter DeLuca
    Vice President, Marketing: Trish Cox

    Agency: Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners
    Executive Creative Director: John Butler
    Associate Creative Directors: Mark Krajan, Chris Toffoli
    Managing Director: Patrick Kiss
    Director of Broadcast Production: Adrienne Cummins
    Agency Producer: Frank Brooks
    Account Director: Lindsay Grant
    Account Supervisor: Samantha Bartelloni

    Production Company: Imperial Woodpecker
    Director: Stacy Wall
    Executive Producer: Charlie Cocuzza
    Producer: Anita Wetterstedt
    Editorial: Arcade Edit
    Visual Effects: Framestore
    Sound Design: Barking Owl
    Music: Beacon Street

    Talent Negotiation: CAA and PMK*BNC

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    Peyton Manning is one of the top 10 commercials endorsers of all time in the sports world. But what about the other quarterback starting on Sunday?

    Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson has only a few contracts, but one advertiser who had faith in him early on—American Family Insurance—is celebrating his trip to the Super Bowl with a grand new commercial from Ogilvy & Mather in Chicago that will during the game in 66 markets on Sunday.

    Set in an empty stadium on Super Bowl morning, the spot was filmed months ago, just in case the Seahawks all the way. Well, here we are. Voiced by Harry Belafonte, the ad is an ode to Wilson's will and determination and reinforces American Family's position as the protector of dreams.

    "We originally conceived the spot as an 'insurance policy' of sorts, should Russell and the Seahawks make the Super Bowl. Fortunately things turned out in our favor and we couldn't be happier for American Family," says Ogilvy's Ian Sohn.

    Added Telisa Yancy, client vp of marketing: "American Family supports Wilson's vision for winning, unyielding commitment to his dreams and leadership skills both on and off the field. He personifies what our brand stands for. He is an inspiration for dreamers everywhere and we are honored to tell his story in a way that will inspire others to work hard to pursue their dreams and allow American Family Insurance to protect them."

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    It's been an incredible week for new creative, with dozens of Super Bowl teasers and full ads released and other commercials elbowing their way for attention. Budweiser, Newcastle and Guinness all rolled out spots that went viral, while JCPenney got a head start on the Olympics and Cheerios unveiled a sequel to a notorious ad from last year.

    Watch our picks for the week's five best spots below, and vote for your favorite. If your favorite isn't shown here, tell us in the comments.

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    What were Don Cheadle and Arnold Schwarzenegger doing in those goofy Bud Light Super Bowl teasers? All is revealed this morning in this extended version of the content from BBDO that the brand will air Sunday night during the Super Bowl.

    In the behind-the-scenes style video, a random dude named Ian gets transported to the craziest night of his life after he's accosted by an attractive woman in a bar. She gives him a Bud Light and asks him if he's "up for whatever happens next." He is, of course, up for it—and so he's whisked away to a waiting limousine filled with a bachelorette party, plus Reggie Watts spinning tunes—and that's just the beginning.

    Ian gets styled by Minka Kelly and is then taken to a strange building, where he meets Cheadle and a llama in an elevator, attends a party filled only with twins, and winds up in a room where he gets to play Schwarzenegger in table tennis. When that spirited game ends, a wall collapses and Ian is suddenly in the middle of a rock concert with One Republic.

    At a screening of the ads for the press on the floating Bud Light Hotel in the Hudson River on Thursday night, Bud Light executives described the excruciating planning process for the execution—after all, they had just one chance to film everything as it happened. (Actually, they had two chances—they put a second man through the same experience on the same night, but ended up going with Ian because of his bubbly personality.)

    At the end, Bud Light is described in on-screen text as "The perfect beer for whatever happens." The hashtag is #UpForWhatever. A condensed version of the same content will run in the form of a :30 and a :60 during the Super Bowl on Sunday night. The work was directed by HeLo's Jeff Tremaine.

    Bud Light said the new positioning taps into the energy and optimism of millennials, and that the brand is excited to pursue the messaging more broadly after this launch phase.

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    Lorde is a humble, homegrown New Zealand star, and she's taken out a full-page ad in the New Zealand Herald to make sure everyone back home knows she hasn't forgotten that.

    Ahead of her performance at the Laneway music festival on Wednesday night this week (apparently her only summer show in New Zealand, where it's summer, Yankee suckers), the singer of anti-materialist anthem "Royals" penned a handwritten note for the ad celebrating her performance Sunday night at the Grammy Awards in L.A., not to mention the two awards she picked up there, for Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance.

    "hiya if you're reading this, Joel & I won. HOLY CRAP," reads the letter, referring to her producer Joel Little. "I just wanted to say thank you for the time you've given me over the past 14 months… without your support there's no way I would've ever gotten to stand in the middle of the Staples Center and perform in my school shoes."

    It's a classy, charming statement of appreciation that fits nicely with her acceptance speeches, and broader down-to-earth positioning—a nice example of when marketing can perfectly align with honesty. Or at least, with an exceptionally convincing illusion of it.

    See the full ad below.

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    Pepsi famously dialed back its volume of TV ads for this year's Super Bowl to focus on its sponsorship of the halftime show. Here's the ad from Mekanism that will run right before the halftime show begins. It shows New York City springing to life with music, with its landmarks serving as instruments. NYC is such a rich, inspiring place for this kind of approach. Nothing revolutionary, but a nice little opening number for Bruno Mars.

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    Everyone has an opinion on the Super Bowl commercials. Now, you have a place where can grade every one of them—with a single click.

    Adweek is launching a special site for Sunday's Super Bowl where we will be giving each spot a letter grade (from A+ to F) shortly after it airs. And we'll be asking you to do the same. You'll be able to see all the commercials in one place, too.

    The submissions will be averaged to give an overall reader grade, which will sit right next to Adweek's official grade—so you'll be able to see how much you as a group enjoyed each ad, versus how much we did.

    Visit adweek.com/superbowl at kickoff to join us.

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    Esurance is doing a fun little stunt tonight that should get some attention.

    The online insurance company has bought the first commercial slot after the the final whistle of the Super Bowl. The company says that cost $1.5 million less than running an in-game execution—and it's using the ad to announce a Twitter sweepstakes in which it will give that money away to a lucky viewer who tweets the hashtag #EsuranceSave30.

    To keep as many viewers' attention from drifting as possible, Esurance has gotten The Office star John Krasinski, its voiceover talent since 2012, to appear on camera for the first time in this spot, created by Leo Burnett.

    After the ad airs, you will have 36 hours to tweet #EsuranceSave30 for a chance to win. Krasinski will unveil the winner on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday.

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    When the Super Bowl is a blowout, you need the commercials to pick up the slack. The good news from Sunday night: On the whole, the ads were stronger than last year. The bad news: Nobody was really riveted to their TVs and drafting off the energy of a thrilling football game.

    Still, there was lots to enjoy from advertisers on Sunday night. See our favorite spots below.

    Also, we graded the ads in real time on Sunday. Visit our Big Game Ad Report Card site to see all the commercials again, and grade them yourself.

    10. TurboTax
    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy
    Brilliantly directed by Bryan Buckley, this commercial took a fun insight—that Super Bowl Sunday isn't the greatest day for most football fans—and ran with it. And danced with it. And got to second base with it.

    9. Volkswagen "Wings"
    Agency: Argonaut
    Strong concept, heavenly visuals. And you remember the longevity message. One of the high points from the auto advertisers.

    8. RadioShack
    Agency: GSD&M
    Major points for being self-deprecating, plus a truly impressive cavalcade of 1980s stars. One of the most surprisingly strong ads on the game. The :60 is even better.

    7. Coca-Cola "It's Beautiful"
    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy
    A lot of Americana in this year's Super Bowl ads, and no spot was as diverse about it, geographically or racially, as this one. A commercial as beautiful as the country it saluted.

    6. Chrysler "America's Import"
    Agency: GlobalHue
    Not as strong as "Born of Fire," "Halftime in America" or "Farmer," but this two-minute Chrysler spot still had attitude for miles and kept viewers glued to the screen. Dylan was a risky choice, but it worked.

    5. T-Mobile
    Agency: Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners
    Great use of Tim Tebow (and his lack of a contract) in T-Mobile's first two ads of the night, which were very entertaining. The third spot, with text only, was a letdown. Tebow deserved that third ad.

    4. Microsoft "Empowering"
    Agency: In-house
    This one grew on me. The robotic voiceover, only later revealed to be narration by ex-NFL player Steve Gleason, immediately sets it apart. It fits a lot into 60 seconds, but the message is simple and clear. A winner from Microsoft.

    3. Hyundai "Dad's Sixth Sense"
    Agency: Innocean USA
    A quiet winner from Hyundai, it had everything, from slapstick comedy to a payoff that made perfect sense. You don't need 60 seconds (or more) to do a great car commercial.

    2. Cheerios "Gracie"
    Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi
    A simple story, great acting and a subtle rebuke to haters—perfect for the brand and for the occasion. General Mills made its second appearance ever on the Super Bowl really count.

    1. Budweiser "Puppy Love"
    Agency: Anomaly
    Just because it's a crowd-pleaser doesn't mean it isn't brilliant. This ad has everything you want in a Super Bowl commercial—it's cute yet stately; it feels tangible yet totally iconic. It conquered YouTube, and then conquered the telecast as well—even though it aired late in a boring game. It will go down as one of the classics.

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    Every region had its own odd selection of local ads during last night's Super Bowl, but Utah surely takes the prize for most uncomfortable viewing-party moment.

    In an eerily quiet and hypnotically rotating road-safety PSA, the Utah Department of Transportation depicted a dead child lying in an overturned car. A dead kid. During the Super Bowl.

    "Sam looks like he's sleeping, but he's not," the narrator explains. "He's not thinking. He's not breathing. He's dead."

    Unlike many of the evening's ads, this one makes a very clear point: Unbuckled adults can pose a huge risk to other passengers, including children, in the event of a crash. According to a statistic in the ad, unbuckled motorists increase the risk of injury or death to other passengers by 40 percent.

    The state's Zero Fatalities microsite seems strangely pessimistic (or maybe just realistic) about the ad's impact: "If this doesn't inspire you to buckle up, we hope it at least shows you how your actions can threaten the lives of your friends and family members who are in the car with you. Seat belt use isn't just a personal decision; it affects everyone in the vehicle and others on the road."

    A state spokesman admitted to the Salt Lake Tribune that the ad may be a bit dark for a festive event like the Super Bowl, but that safety officials "hope this commercial will spark a conversation and maybe inspire someone who doesn't typically buckle up to do so."

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    There was lots of speculation in recent weeks that Apple might be running a Super Bowl commercial this year to mark the 30th birthday of Macintosh—and of the Super Bowl spot that so famously launched it.

    That didn't happen. But this morning, Apple did release just such an ad online. (And yes, it was being considered for last night's broadcast before plans changed, sources say.) On the website, Apple calls the new film "a story 30 years and one day in the making." And it's a solid if not spectacular production, with an interesting conceit.

    Ten days ago, on Jan. 24—exactly 30 years to the day after Apple introduced Macintosh—the company sent 15 camera crews all over the world to document a single day in the life of Apple products. (This was five days after Lee Clow's tweet about Apple and the Super Bowl, so it seems likely that the Super Bowl plan was then in the works.) The company goes on:

    From sunrise in Melbourne to nightfall in Los Angeles, they documented people doing amazing things with Apple products. They shot over 70 hours of footage—all with the iPhone 5s. Then it was edited and scored with an original soundtrack. Thanks to the power of the Mac and the innovations it has inspired, an effort that normally takes months was accomplished in a matter of days.

    It's a nice framework for a birthday celebration (if a tad reminiscent of the old sunrise spot for Prudential by Droga5). Most interestingly, it's quite similar in many ways to the commercial Microsoft ran on Sunday night, though in other ways very different, too. The Microsoft ad celebrates "technology" generally, and only now and then singles out particular Microsoft technologies (notable among them, Kinect). The Apple ad, though, celebrates Apple products at every turn—iPads, iPhones, desktop computers.

    The Microsoft ad tugs at the heartstrings more, and its less self-congratulatory in some ways. But the Apple ad has the more direct through line to the products and what they've accomplished. Watching the Microsoft ad, you're told that Microsoft is making the world a better place. Watching the Apple ad, you're simply reminded that Apple already has.

    It's possible Apple didn't want to be on the same broadcast as Microsoft, and perhaps appear to be imparting the same message. But in fact, it's a different message—one that has 30 years of innovative history behind it. Looking at it that way, no wonder Apple didn't need the Super Bowl this year. The company's past and present is a story you already know and believe. It's the future that's the tricky part.

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    Early in the Super Bowl’s first quarter, Jaguar found itself playing defense. Lexus—not even a big game advertiser—was buying space on Twitter, piggybacking on its #goodtobebad hashtag.

    When you’re cultivating a bad boy image with villainous Brits in your commercials, you don’t abide rivals squatting on your hashtag. Jaguar planned for this kind of game day action; its ad team was holed up in a rapid response social media center, which they dubbed the “Villains’ Lair.”

    Jaguar’s ad agency Mindshare calls these rooms The Loop, with flat screens flashing Google trends, social media feeds, sentiment trackers, digital ad click counts and similar data on competing brands. During the Super Bowl, dozens of people on Jaguar and Mindshare’s team were plugged in, and Twitter’s people were there, too, ready to assist in moments like these.

    Quickly, Jaguar needed to defend its hashtag #goodtobebad, and that meant outbidding its competitors, as well as noncar companies throughout the night. At one point Esurance had promoted against the Jaguar hashtag. Later in the game, Audi would snatch promoted territory against Jaguar, too.

    The U.K. car company, however, kept its footing for most of the night, controlling its key terms while at points encroaching on its rivals’ Twitter turf. It was all part of the ad game within the big game, and Adweek had a front row seat in Jaguar’s war room. (Another one of Mindshare’s client’s, Unilever, marketing Axe body spray, also was in the New York offices, but did not allow a reporter to see its command center.)

    Unilever spent $500,000 on social media marketing on Sunday, according to The Wall Street Journal. It also bought the lone Promoted Trend of the day on Twitter, the ultimate—and expensive—defense against competitors. No one would show higher than Axe under the hashtag #kissforpeace. 

    Jaguar plugs into The Loop command center on game day at
    Mindshare's New York office.

    Jaguar and Mindshare did not reveal how much they had in the war chest, but they were ready to spend in an instant and did. That’s why it was crucial to have Jaguar, its creative team and Twitter all in one place.

    “Having people in the room making decisions and being able to buy in real time is important,” said Jeff Curry, Jaguar North America’s brand vp.

    Super Bowl advertisers embrace Twitter more every year, and this year hashtags were shown in 57 percent of the ads, compared to 50 percent last year. There were also a record number of Super Bowl-related tweets this year.

    The game is the ultimate stage for the social messaging site, showing off how marketers take to the network to either respond to rivals’ TV commercials or augment their own. It is the second-screen in action, especially during live events like this one.

    Thus, instead of striving to show the best commercial, advertisers are looking to create the most popular tweet. Even the marketers who don’t have Super Bowl spots are sniping from the social media sidelines.

    While they can’t prepare for every contingency, say Joe Namath in a ’70s fur coat during the coin toss, these social media strategies are developed well in advance. Jaguar was in New York all week huddling with Mindshare.

    "We’ve been establishing this villainous tone of voice,” said Joe Quattrone, Mindshare’s lead on the Jaguar social media strategy. “It’s how we want to behave and react in everything we do tonight.”

    Jaguar has been playing the villain for months, responding to marketing from Mercedes on YouTube last year, and hiring British actors—Ben Kingsley, Tom Hiddleston and Mark Strong—who are known for some evil roles. With director Tom Hooper, Jaguar created the 60-second Super Bowl commercial “Rendezvous” and online content it says is worthy of binge viewing.

    The commercial on Sunday helped drive 20,000 website visits within minutes after the ad aired in the fourth quarter, Quattrone said. And Jaguar was at its most evil when tweeting at the auto brand Maserati after its spot showed the new Ghibli car.

    “Did you know that Ghibli means hot air,” Jaguar’s social media team tweeted. With 179 retweets, that was one of their highest performing messages for the brand.

    “That’s the voice we’ve been cultivating the past three months,” Quattrone said.

    Jaguar also took on Audi. Late in the game, prices started coming down on Twitter, and Jaguar was able to buy in places it was not expecting, Quattrone said. “We made a couple of key decisions about where to place money,” he said. “We upped the level of investment on conquesting Audi keyword terms.”

    Besides car brands, Jaguar was also in a back and forth with totally unrelated companies like Tide and Tidy Cats.

    In the case of Tide, the detergent company made Vine videos that reacted to the TV commercials of other brands. Jaguar’s creative team, Spark 44, saw Tide’s strategy and shot a Vine in response.

    The Vine showed laundered shirts and black gloves, and a hint of a Tide bottle: “A proper British villain is always prepared. No matter how messy it gets.”

    The on-the-fly Vine ended with a card that read: #goodtobebad.

    On this Super Bowl Sunday, for Jaguar's social media team, it was good to be bad—and better to be quick.

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    Despite grumbling from some quarters that the Discovery series Moonshiners—which shines the camera light on the bootleggers of backwoods Appalachia—is a dramatization, one component of the show just got real: Tim Smith, the series’ bibbed-overall-wearing star, has gone into retail.

    Prost Beverage has inked a deal with Smith to sell his booze under the name Climax. Said Smith in a statement: “My moonshine is legit, and it’s still the real deal.”

    If Smith sounds defensive, it may be because concessions are inevitable when turning country hootch into a store brand. Climax comes in peach and grape, and its 79 proof is far tamer than the 150 proof stuff that stills often spill. To make the leap, Prost enlisted the aid of brand development agency Beardwood & Co., which designed packaging that manages the competing ends of looking haute and hillbilly at the same time.

    When it comes to moonshine, “there are a lot of Mason jars, XXXs and jugs with handles,” said Beardwood managing partner Ryan Lynch. “We wanted to tell the true story of Tim’s distilling with authenticity, but no clichés.”

    The resulting bottle uses a kraft paper label that features Smith’s dog Camo as the mascot. The bottle’s also clear, as befits white lightning—them brown liquors being for cityfolk and all.

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    IDEA: Chipotle has won scores of ad awards and legions of fans with its gorgeous animations and haunting soundtracks. Now, the burrito chain is getting even more ambitious with a longer format and a whole new tone—launching a satirical scripted comedy show on Hulu humorously attacking the evil ogre of industrial farming.

    Chipotle knew it wanted to develop comical branded entertainment as long ago as late 2011, when it rolled out the famous "Back to the Start" video. Impressed by webisodes he had done for Post Shredded Wheat, the brand turned to director Tim Piper, best known in the ad world for having done Dove's Grand Prix-winning "Evolution" ad. Piper, who had started a production company, Piro, to help brands get better at entertainment, was game. More than two years later, the result is a four-episode first season of Farmed and Dangerous, premiering Feb. 17.

    "They wanted something that could be scripted and fun but at the same time deal with serious issues and help drive people to Chipotle," said Piper. "We cracked this idea in an early meeting, wrote a 30-minute pilot, did a reading for them, and they fell in love with it."

    COPYWRITING: The first four 30-minute episodes focus on the PetroPellet, a petroleum-based animal feed introduced by (fictional) agricultural giant Animoil that promises to revolutionize the industry—but seems mostly to be making cows explode. Animoil's top PR man, Buck Marshall (Ray Wise), is tasked with damage control after an exploding-cow video goes viral.

    Piper's partner at Piro, Daniel Rosenberg, who has a long history in scripted TV, recruited writers including Jeremy Pikser (who co-wrote Bulworth with Warren Beatty) and Mike Dieffenbach to work on the first season. Chipotle went through the scripts as they progressed.

    "Usually they asked us to just make it funnier," said Piper. "Other times they would course correct on factual things. But every time we got their feedback, the show would improve, which is pretty rare."

    The series is unbranded (it doesn't even say "Chipotle presents" at the beginning of the episodes), although one character, not coincidentally named Chip, embodies all the values of Chipotle. "We don't have a guy eating a burrito, but we do have a guy who stands for everything they stand for," Piper said.

    FILMING/ART DIRECTION: Chipotle wanted the show to look more high-end than most online Web series. "We shot on the Alexa camera, which they shot James Bond on," said Piper. "Our crew had all worked on long-format movies, blockbusters even. The production values were as high as possible, so it looks like some heart and thought have been applied to it." All the editing and post work was done in-house at Piro.

    TALENT: Wise (Twin Peaks, Mad Men, 24) is joined in the cast by Eric Pierpoint, John Sloan and Karynn Moore. The other actors are "unfamiliar names that wouldn't break the bank," Piper said. "Unfamiliar talented names!" added Rosenberg.

    SOUND: Music is central to the series. In fact, Chipotle kept pushing for more. "There are very few places in the four episodes where music doesn't play a role," said Piper. Piro commissioned original pop songs from DeeTown Entertainment (including "All About Me" from up-and-coming artist RAE) that are being packaged into a whole soundtrack. Composer Matthew Kajcienski did some orchestral scores.

    Sound design was important, too. "Particularly in humor, there are moments you can mine with great sound design," said Rosenberg. "All the auditory elements—the music, the dialogue, the sound effects, the mix—play a role in getting the humor out."

    MEDIA: Episodes will premiere weekly on Hulu. A separate ad campaign will promote the show, and a dedicated section called "Food for Thought" at The Huffington Post will extend the message further.


    Client: Chipotle
    Project: "Farmed and Dangerous"
    Director: Tim Piper
    Production Company: Piro

    0 0

    Attention men: Want hair-care products that turn your hair into a sentient toupee capable of the most charming antics?

    No? Really, it's better that it sounds. It's great for when you're in a business meeting and some dial tone is droning on about whatever who cares, and the hot woman across the table is eyeing you hard … it will mack on your behalf without anyone noticing.

    So says one of two new oddball spots from Wieden + Kennedy for Old Spice hair products, vaguely reminiscent of Axe's walking-hair-loves-headless-boobs commercial from 2012. (The director, Tom Kuntz, also has experience working with hair that has a mind of its own—going back to Skittles' "Beard.")

    Another new Old Spice ad tells you that your creepy-furry head pet will also serve you exceptionally well when you're on a date at the boardwalk. Just look at the magical surprise it can pull, hands-free, out of the arcade claw.

    It really is the perfect marriage of the campaign's tagline, "Hair that gets results," and the brand's classic marketing ethos—"If your grandfather hadn't worn it, you wouldn't exist."

    Credits plus a print ad below.

    Client: Old Spice
    Spots: "Meeting" and "Boardwalk"

    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.
    Creative Directors: Craig Allen, Jason Bagley
    Copywriter: Jason Kreher
    Art Director: Max Stinson
    Producers: Hayley Goggin, Katie Reardon
    Account Team: Georgina Gooley, Liam Doherty, Nick Pirtle, Jessica Monsey, Michael Dalton
    Executive Creative Directors: Susan Hoffman, Joe Staples
    Head of Production: Ben Grylewicz

    Production Company: MJZ
    Director: Tom Kuntz
    Executive Producer: Scott Howard
    Line Producer: Emily Skinner
    Director of Photography: Andre Chemetoff

    Editorial Company: McKenzie Cutler
    Editor: Gavin Cutler
    Assistant Editor: Ryan Steele
    Producer: Sasha Hirschfeld

    Visual Effects Company: Framestore
    Visual Effects Supervisor: Alex Thomas
    Compositing Supervisor: Russell Dodgson
    Producers: Tram Le, Claudia Lecaros
    Flame: Stefan Smith, Trent Shumway
    Nuke Leads: Vanessa DuQuesnay, Jonni Isaacs, J.D. Yepes
    Nuke: Geoff Duquette, Jason Phua, Carl Schroter, Jack Fisher, Anthony Lyons, Katerina Arroyo, Nick Sorenson, Kenneth Quinn Brown

    Music Company: Rumblefish
    Producer: Mikey Ecker

    Final Mix Studio: Lime Studios
    Post Engineer: Loren Silber
    Assistant Engineer: Patrick Navarre
    Producer: Jessica Locke

    Color Transfer: CO3
    Artist: Stefan Sonnenfeld

    0 0

    Scotch whisky brand Bell's and ad agency King James might just lift your spirits with this South African ad with an elderly man struggling to overcome his illiteracy so he can celebrate a family milestone.

    Director Greg Gray of Velocity Films employs a restrained cinematic style to show "The Reader" diligently practicing his A-B-Cs at every opportunity. There are some deft details: Our hero initially misspells "Kat" while playing Scrabble but gets it right later on, and he places cards reading "Kettle," "Oven" and "Taps" on corresponding objects around his home.

    The literacy angle might sound like a stretch, but the idea of celebrating personal triumphs by toasting with Bell's feels on target, and the heartfelt acting and storytelling are strong enough to yield a potent emotional payoff.

    Indeed, good scotch should leave you with a warm feeling inside.

    Via Design Taxi.

    0 0

    In marketing, sometimes the greatest obstacle to greatness can be attempting to re-create greatness. Advertising seems to know only how to cheapen art, making it incredibly rare to find an homage that doesn't feel like a commercialized cardboard cutout of the original.

    So it was ambitious enough for The Sunday Times and agency Grey London to attempt this ad devoted to iconic moments in art, music and film. But then they doubled down by choosing to create one seamless take that brings each of these masterworks to life.

    The result is an incredible 50 seconds of real-time video called "Icons," created without any digital trickery, in which we see one actor move fluidly through six scenes from classical art and pop culture, with references to Forrest Gump, Reservoir Dogs, Daft Punk and more.

    Watch the ad here:

    The key to making a clip that glorified great art rather than diminishing it was in celebrating the meticulous construction of each icon, says Grey executive creative director Nils Leonard. Many ads mimic art, he says, but few truly honor it by showing the details that make an enduring icon.

    "When someone says 'a nod to,' you need to start worrying. This is a much more honest idea, an open idea. It's not claiming these icons at all. It's showing what it took to construct these images," Leonard tells Adweek.

    "It raises the subject matter of thought that goes into these kinds of moments, and why some of them are remembered but some of them aren't."

    From day one, the concept had its risks. It would obviously be difficult to create something stylish and elegant but also grounded in the reality of an unedited long take. And without any licensing agreement in place with any of the featured artists or filmmakers, there was always the chance of a legal battle with one of the creators they were trying to honor.

    But the agency pressed on, not just writing a potential shot list but actually describing in detail how each scene could flow gracefully into the next.

    On Jan. 3, the agency brought the approved script to a directing duo called Us, made up of Chris Barrett and Luke Taylor. They were instantly enamored with it but expressed concern about Grey's goal of squeezing 11 different icons into the shoot.

    "We knew the joy of this commercial was going to be the transition from one scene to the other, and we didn't want to rush those," Barrett says. Together they honed the script down to six scenes and began planning how to pull it all off.

    After one day of pre-lighting and rehearsal, the ad was filmed on Jan. 22.

    By 4 p.m., they still didn't have a workable take. The problem was in re-enacting Michelangelo's The Creation of Adam, which requiring turning the camera 45 degrees in mid-take. The camera, they realized on the day of the shoot, couldn't turn in the right direction. The steady-handed cameraman volunteered to manage the tilt by hand, which saved the shot.

    All told, there were 27 takes, but No. 16 was the clear winner. A week later, the spot was on air and online.

    Despite the logistical difficulty of the shoot and the tight time frame, Barrett says the ad's quick turnaround was made possible by the fact that everyone involved was a true believer.

    "It was great to have such a strong idea from the beginning," he says. "Everyone from the client to the agency, everyone was just so on board with it, it was a joy to work on. It was a really nice, smooth, enjoyable ride."

    Grey hopes to build on the project, possibly with another video or by partnering with artists to recreate their favorite icons from the past and pop culture.

    Until then, check out the "making of" video below, which, instead of being a lengthy documentary about the production, is simply the ad shown from a different camera angle.

    Client: The Sunday Times
    Agency: Grey, London
    Executive Creative Director: Nils Leonard
    Creative Director: Dave Monk
    Creatives: Jonathan Rands and Johan Leandersson
    Agency Producer: Debbie Impett
    Directors: Us (Chris Barrett and Luke Taylor)
    Production Company: Academy Films
    Executive Producer: Lizie Gower
    Producer: Juliette Harris
    DOP: Ben Fordesman
    A&R Operator: Simon Wood
    Art Director: Alison Dominitz
    Hair & MakeUp: Lu Hinton
    Stylist: Rebecca Hale
    Casting: Hammond & Cox
    Editor: Dave Stevens @ Assembly Rooms
    Post: Electric Theatre Collective
    Grade: Aubrey Woodiwiss
    Audio post production: String & Tins
    Musical Composition: Tom Player
    Lead Actor: Gary Milner


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