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Breaking News in Advertising, Media and Technology

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    Attractive models are great at being sexy in commercials—until the dialogue on the cue cards starts getting super weird and unsexy.

    Have a look at this video without spoilers, then scroll down for more on the campaign.

    Spoilers below...

    Creative studio and production company Big Block Live created the video as a Mothers' Day campaign for Save the Children, which is on a roll lately with some great viral PSAs. Josh Ruben and Vincent Peone (Josh + Vince) directed the spot, having connected with Save the Children more than a year ago.

    "We connected last year when Michael Amaditz from Save the Children saw our talk at SXSW about making funny content," Peone tells AdFreak. "They challenged us to come up with an idea that dealt with the subject matter in an evocative way."

    "We essentially said, 'Let's take this a step further and add some organic reactions from our talent,' " Ruben adds. "Viewers respond to visceral material like that, and the turn really hooks you in such a fun, darkly awkward way. Save the Children already knew they wanted to use sexy content to drive attention to the cause, which is wise because, to put it bluntly, even the keyword 'sex' is an instant leg up for views."

    So, how awkward did it get on the set?

    "It certainly wasn't the most comfortable day on set," says Peone. "We had cast a 'director' character, Aubyn Gwinn, who did a great job at being supportive to our talent, encouraging them to give it their best shot. In the end, we were really happy with the level of commitment the models gave us, despite the ridiculous circumstances. Once the ruse was up and our models learned that they were in a Save the Children commercial, everyone was relieved and happy to have lent their performances to the cause. We were thrilled—we knew this piece could only work with genuine reactions, but we were highly sensitive about not ruining anyone's day in the process."

    Gwinn, in fact, has done fashion ads, which was critical. "We made it a priority to run the set like a fashion shoot. It was crucial that it looked and felt legit," says Ruben. "We knew if we said we were directing it, there would be a slight chance we'd get recognized from CollegeHumor."

    Client: Save The Children
    Title: "The Most Important 'Sexy' Model Video Ever"
    Air Date: 5/6/14

    Creative Director (Save the Children): Michael Amaditz
    Manager of Video Production (Save the Children): Suzanne Klaucke

    Production Company: Big Block Live
    Directors: Josh + Vince
    Managing Director: Kenny Solomon
    Executive Producer: Mary Crosse
    Producer: Corwin Carroll
    Director of Photography: Joe Victorine

    Editor: Alex Amoling

    Colorist: Tristan Kneschke, Exit Editorial

    Sound Design: Joel Raebe, Lichen Lion

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    Hey, fellow morons. Just wanted to let you know the marketers are on to us. 

    "People want to want things. Consumers need you to go," says the Canadian Marketing Association's invitation to its 2014 national convention. As an added bonus, Toronto agency Cundari created some short, bad-on-purpose musical skits (see below) celebrating idiot consumers and their search for the meaning of life through brands.

    The point of the snarky little vignettes is that no one would ever know what to buy or sell if marketers didn't tell us how to think and act. Don't know about you, but I'm craving some red soda pop right about now. Or maybe blue.

    Via Ads of the World.

    Client: Canadian Marketing Association
    Agency: Cundari, Toronto
    Group Creative Directors: Brian Murray, Sean Ganann
    Art Director: Sean Ganann
    Copywriter: Brian Murray
    Director: Max Sherman / OPC
    Editor: Graham Chisholm / Married to Giants
    Colourist: Conor Fisher / Alter Ego
    Music: Grayson Matthews
    Published: May 2014

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    Procter & Gamble, the self-described "Proud sponsor of moms," always has something special planned for Mother's Day. Last year, it was the spot with Eunice Kennedy Shriver and Maria Shriver. This year, the company has revived one of the great early entries in Wieden + Kennedy's "Thank you, mom" campaign for another run.

    The tear-jerker of a spot, titled "What I See," stars Special Olympics athlete Molly Hincka and her mother Kerry, who provides the emotional voiceover. It's simply and nicely crafted, beginning in the present day and traveling into the past through old video footage and photos. It ends on a lovely moment with Kerry holding Molly aloft a baby.

    "They felt that she would never walk and she would never talk," Kerry says. "I never saw the things my child couldn't do. I only imagined what she could."

    The spot first aired way back in 2011, and also got a modest amount of views when it was reposted to the Special Olympics YouTube page earlier this year. But it predated P&G's first truly major viral success in the "Thank you, mom" campaign—2012's "Best Job" spot, directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu. And so, P&G clearly feels like it deserves (and can get away with) a revival.

    "What I See" is now front and center now on P&G's YouTube page, with 5 million views since the latest version was posted April 27. (Many of those are paid views, as P&G is inserting the ad into YouTube search results under the heading "Happy Mother's Day.")

    The ad ends with a link to donations. In honor of Mother's Day, P&G will be matching Special Olympics donations up to $200,000 through June 1. Give at http://www.specialolympics.org/mom.

    Client: Procter & Gamble
    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.

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    It's such a great, simple idea: Young Brazilians want to learn English. Elderly Americans living in retirement homes just want someone to talk to. Why not connect them?

    FCB Brazil did just that with its "Speaking Exchange" project for CNA language schools. As seen in the touching case study below, the young Brazilians and older Americans connect via Web chats, and they not only begin to share a language—they develop relationships that enrich both sides culturally and emotionally.

    The differences in age and background combine to make the interactions remarkable to watch. And the participants clearly grow close to one another, to the point where they end up speaking from the heart in a more universal language than English.

    The pilot project was implemented at a CNA school in Liberdade, Brazil, and the Windsor Park Retirement Community in Chicago. The conversations are recorded and uploaded as private YouTube videos for the teachers to evaluate the students' development.

    "The idea is simple and it's a win-win proposition for both the students and the American senior citizens. It's exciting to see their reactions and contentment. It truly benefits both sides," says Joanna Monteiro, executive creative director at FCB Brazil.

    Says Max Geraldo, FCB Brazil's executive director: "The beauty of this project is in CNA's belief that we develop better students when we develop better people."

    Client: CNA
    Project: "Speaking Exchange"
    Agency: FCB Brazil
    Executive Creative Directors: Joanna Monteiro, Max Geraldo
    Digital Creative Director: Pedro Gravena
    Creative: Vinícius Fernandes, Bruno Mazzotti, Daniel Alves, Mauricio Bina
    Creative Technologist: Márcio Bueno
    Digital Production: Brave.ag
    Project: Lia D'Amico
    Technology: Gerson Lupatini, Caio Mello
    Account: Mauro Silveira, Alec Cocchiaro, Pedro Führer, Thiago Figueiredo
    Planners: Raphael Barreto, Lia Bertoni, Pedro Schneider
    Media: Alexandre Ugadin, Tiago Santos, Fábio Tachibana, Sandra Carvalho, Fábio Menezes
    RTV: Vivi Guedes, Ana Flávia de Lucca, André Fonseca
    Production Company: Hungry Man
    Director: Ricardo Mehedff
    Co-direction: Fábio Pinheiro
    Photographers: Fernando Young (Brazil), Grant Weiss (Chicago)
    Production Company: Hungry Man
    Account Production: Mariana Marinho
    Editor: Rodrigo Resende
    Managing Partner: Alex Mehedff
    Executive Production: Alex Mehedff, Rodrigo Castelo
    Postproduction: Hungry Man; Psycho
    Postproduction Supervisor: Rodrigo Oliveira
    Sound Producer: Timbre
    Client Supervisors: Luciana Fortuna, Nicadan Galvão, Diego Marmo, Ricardo Martins

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    At the dawn of the 1970s, the Huffy Corporation (which made gas station equipment before turning to bicycles in 1934) was losing air from its tires. Cheap bikes manufactured in factories overseas had grabbed nearly 40 percent of the market, and a recession was looming. So Huffy made a strategic marketing decision: It would shift most of its attention to the kids demographic.

    This 1971 ad proves just how good Huffy was at it, too. Skillfully deploying a dual sell, the brand excited kids with the idea of a new bike while also luring parents with the guarantee of a low price. Bikes have always been unique for their ability to deliver on an irresistible assurance: For a comparatively reasonable sum, most anyone can buy into fun, adventure and (as Tiger here, formerly Wilbur, would tell you) a near-instant social status upgrade. What’s more, as this 2014 ad for Huffy demonstrates, the tactic still works, though this time around Huffy is appealing to mom with the same enchantment it promised to the neighborhood boy 43 years ago.

    Huffy has distilled that promise in a single word: hooky, a term that doesn’t mean skipping school as much as it means the chance to ditch your responsibilities, go for a ride and be cool. “Hooky is a nice bridge line from what is historically a child’s product,” said Katherine Wintsch, founder of marketing firm The Mom Complex. Huffy, Wintsch believes, is saying that “you too can play hooky and harken back to your younger years.”

    But as charming as these ads are, a closer look suggests that Huffy might have actually lost some of the magic it so capably practiced in the old days.

    Huffy’s 1971 ad, Wintsch observes, casts a spell that is both human and genuine. The social transformation that Tiger’s new bike has affected is believable because Tiger still looks like a normal boy from the neighborhood. “The kid’s not perfect,” Wintsch said. “He’s got a chubby little face and his hat doesn’t fit right. I wish they’d taken the same approach toward motherhood in the 2014 ad.”

    While Huffy’s avowal that a new bike represents carefree fun is the same, its application to the millennial mom is, Wintsch said, stereotypical. “If the 1971 ad was about going after boys, then the 2014 ad is about idealizing their mothers—and this one’s just a little too perfect. She has beautiful nails, a big rock of a wedding ring—and she’s a myth.”

    If, as this ad suggests, mom really is never too old to play hooky, Wintsch believes she should be sailing down the street with the wind in her hair and to hell with the rest of it. “I wish there were more here than a pretty mom standing by a pretty bike,” she said.

    In other words, maybe a little more Wilbur would help.

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    Water Is Life and DDB New York's latest spot is, like much of their other work, heartbreaking. The ad focuses on the struggles of a young girl born in the slums of India, and does not pull its punches.

    In the past few years, the clean water charity has skewered the smarmy #FirstWorldProblems hashtag, helped a 4-year-old Kenyan boy fulfill his bucket list, and most recently, created a water safety book with pages that double as water filters.

    The new PSA, titled "The Girl Who Couldn't Cry," is an incredibly powerful piece of film, leaning heavily on shock value. But as with the organization's previous efforts, it makes its point all the more effective by creating that discomfort in—and compassion from—more privileged viewers.

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    What do Bob Dylan, Ellen DeGeneres, Stephen Colbert, the Muppets, U2 and the cast of the '90s sitcom Full House have in common?

    They all starred in Super Bowl commercials this year, and none of them came anywhere close to the top of the list when it came to sharing of the ads online.

    The tepid performance by celebrities in driving online ad sharing is one of the top-line findings of a new study from Unruly Media released Thursday titled "The Science of Sharing 2014," largely focused on the performance of this year's Super Bowl spots.

    Among the key findings: that celebrities alone do not drive online ad sharing (this has been true for a while); that the most-shared ads were ones that evoked intense psychological responses; that Microsoft, instead of Budweiser, could have won the Super Bowl this year; and that the game's spots, overall, were something of a disappointment when it came to virality online.

    As seen in the chart below, only three of the 12 most-shared ads from the 2014 Super Bowl featured famous faces. They were Bud Light (which packed in several celebs, including Arnold Schwarzenegger, Questlove and Don Cheadle), Jaguar (Ben Kingsley, Tom Hiddleston, etc.) and Kia (Lawrence Fishburne).

    Instead, the list was dominated by heartwarming ads—the top three were Budweiser's "Puppy Love" and "A Hero's Welcome" and Coca-Cola's "America Is Beautiful"—and a few comedies and visual spectacles.

    It's been clear for some time that celebs don't necessarily mean viral gold for advertisers. Only 13 of the 100 most shared ads of all time featured celebrities, according to Unruly's data. There are, of course, exceptions—like Jean-Claude Van Damme's "Epic Split" for Volvo Trucks, which at No. 10 is the highest-ranking celeb spot on the list (unless you count Ken Block at No. 7, though he's not exactly a known face).

    Another interesting piece of new celeb data from Unruly: The study claims that 93 percent of viewers who saw Bob Dylan's Super Bowl ad didn't realize it was for Chrysler—a number that's almost absurdly high. (Poor Bob.)

    The most shareable ads in the study evoked intense psychological responses among viewers, Unruly said. The biggest winners used warmth and happiness, rather than humor, as their key emotional triggers. Overall, however, the 2014 Super Bowl ads provoked less intense psychological responses than the previous year's Super Bowl ads, Unruly says—noting that, for the first time ever, online sharing of Super Bowl spots was down this year.

    The study makes one other curious claim, saying Microsoft's "Empowering" ad had at least as much of a chance of winning the Super Bowl as Bud's "Puppy Love" did, but suffered largely because it wasn't unveiled before the game.

    Using its own ShareRank algorithm, which gauges shareability, Unruly found that the Bud and Microsoft spots were quite similar in their potential for pass-around. But "Puppy Love," which launched Jan. 29, ended up with almost 2 million shares, while "Empowering," which broke on the game, got just 80,000.

    The other difference between the two? Brand recall. After the game, only 49 percent of people remembered that Microsoft had made "Empowering," while 89 percent knew "Puppy Love" had come from Budweiser.

    "Microsoft evoked an intense mixture of emotions, including inspiration, amazement, warmth and happiness—a great mix for a tech product. Specifically, viewers cited learning about the tech, which allowed the creation of artificial limbs and helping the deaf to hear, as the key driver of the feelings of inspiration and amazement," Unruly notes.

    "Microsoft made an incredible spot that resonated with viewers. To improve its ROI, it could have branded the Microsoft products more prominently to increase brand recall from 49 percent and distributed the spot in advance of game day to maximize shares."

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    How do you sell a car to people who live in a city with plenty of transportation options? Simple. Offer them personal space. From there, it's cake.

    This new ad for Honda's City vehicle by Leo Burnett's Melbourne office may be geared for Australians, but showing the sheer variety of ways that some jerk can invade your personal bubble works for any metropolis.

    It could be my Northeast upbringing (I'm uncomfortable if someone outside my immediate family tries to hug me), but I appreciate just how annoyed these people are. Contrasting that with the visible space and relief the vehicle's interior offers is a nice effort.

    Environmentally friendly mass transit, be damned!

    Credits below.

    Client: Honda
    General Manager Communications: Jason Miller
    Brand Communications Manager: Melissa Altarelli

    Agency: Leo Burnett, Melbourne, Australia
    Executive Creative Director: Jason Williams
    Creative Director: Andrew Woodhead
    Head of Copy: Sarah McGregor
    Senior Art Director: Rob McDowell
    Senior Agency Producer: Cinnamon Darvall
    Group Account Director: Chris Ivanov
    Senior Account Director: Jaime Morgan
    Account Manager: Jacquelyn Whelan

    Production Company: The Sweet Shop
    Director: Noah Marshall
    Producer: Tony Whyman

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    The sensitive hunk and the hunky cowboy are two cornerstones of American advertising. Combined, they form the ultimate housewife fantasy: a man who will rescue you from the dangers of the Wild West and then ask you about your day. (And care about the answer!)

    So, it makes sense that, in an effort to appeal to women, Sauza Tequila would employ such a perfect male specimen to star in its "Make It With a Cowboy" campaign. But after watching the spots, from La Comunidad, it's hard to avoid the feeling that something's a little … off.

    Sort of like tasting a hint of beer in your margarita.

    Clocking in at two minutes, "I'm All Ears" is the campaign's longest video. "What use is a good ear if it's not used for the greater good, like helping a lady relax by listening to what's on her mind?" asks the impeccably stubbled cowboy. "That would be like predicting next fall's 'in' collection and keeping it a secret from all your girlfriends." (Later, he Instagrams the landscape and shows off the cute phone case he found on Pinterest.)

    In a minute-long spot, "Simple Things," the Sauza Cowboy emphasizes the importance of "finding a reliable hairstylist in a new city or having a spare set of flats to walk home in," then grabs a Sauza Sparkling Margarita that's inexplicably appeared atop a log floating down the creek.

    This is the third hunky Sauza guy in as many years, following the "Make It With a Fireman" and "Make It With a Lifeguard" campaign. The overall tone—of the new cowboy ads in particular—is a strange mix of Kraft Zesty Guy's tongue-in-cheek sex appeal (the Zesty guy also played Sauza's lifeguard, in fact) and Old Spice poker-faced weirdness, but not quite as appealing as either.

    Speaking of weird, it's time we address the biggest heard-scratcher in the "Make It With a Cowboy" campaign: its margarita recipe. In two of the three spots, the Sauza Cowboy provides directions for making the ultimate lady-relaxing marg. But you already know how to make a margarita—it's just tequila, lime juice and triple sec over ice, right?

    Not according to this cowboy. His margarita, we learn, is comprised of a can of concentrated limeade (already questionable), water, tequila and—wait for it—one full bottle of light beer.

    Yes, beer. In a margarita.

    You might be super hot, Sauza Cowboy, but you have the bartending skills of Sandra Lee.

    Client: Sauza Tequila
    Agency: La Comunidad
    Social: The Barbarian Group

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    Auction house Christie's may be celebrating its 250th birthday in 2016, but it's trying to seem more youthful in this promo for a contemporary art sale happening this Monday.

    From the Christie's site:"Professional skateboarder Chris Martin rides through Christie's, giving a behind-the-scenes look at highlights from our 'If I Live I'll See You Tuesday' Contemporary Art Evening Sale, with a soundtrack by Awolation."

    The video—presumably made in a contemporary style to push the contemporary product—does a nice job of showing off the art. Loic Gouzer of Christie's tells NPR:"We always show art in the same way, on pristine galleries, on white walls and I think that if you change a bit the context, you infuse it with a new meaning."

    But not everyone is impressed.

    Art critic Michael Miller of the New York Observer said, "I thought the video was ridiculous. As if they're marketing to a bunch of punk rockers who like skateboarding but, you know, have an extra $10 million just on standby to spend on a Warhol."

    If nothing else, Martin has the role of douchey art handler down pat.

    Directed by Gary Gardner. Via The Denver Egotist.

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    Idle hands are the devil's playthings, and those hands look particularly evil when they have 14 fingers or the heads of chickens.

    Earlier today, Old Spice posed a simple question on Twitter:

    The answers came flooding in, and the team at Wieden + Kennedy has been busy ever since, whipping up Photoshopped images of some of the more peculiar replies.

    Check some of them out below, and give Old Spice a hand for another inspired time-waster.

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    When Teddy Bridgewater was 9 years old, he promised his mother Rose that when he made it to the NFL, he would buy her a pink Cadillac Escalade.

    The first part of Bridgewater's dream came true on Thursday night. The Miami native and University of Louisville quarterback was selected by the Minnesota Vikings with the 32nd and final pick of the first round of the NFL Draft.

    Cadillac caught wind of the second part of his dream, about the pink Escalade, and helped make it come true. The gift reveal is included in the seven-minute film below, directed by Spike Lee, about Teddy and his family. The color choice is made doubly meaningful as Rose is a breast cancer survivor.

    I haven't been the biggest fan of Cadillac lately, but this is a nice move. And pro athletes are certainly stepping up with beautiful tributes to their moms this week—following Kevin Durant's moving speech, which is now an NBA ad.

    Hats off to Teddy, and a very Happy Mother's Day to Rose.

    Client: Cadillac
    Agencies: Rogue, Boston; Spike DDB, Brooklyn, N.Y.

    Chief Creative Officer: Lance Jensen
    Executive Vice President, Executive Creative Director, Copy: Dave Banta
    Senior Vice President, Group Creative Director, Art: Kevin Daley
    Vice President, Associate Creative Director, Art: Khari Streeter
    Vice President, Creative Director, Copy: Lawson Clarke
    Chief Execjtive Officer, Chief Creative Officer: Spike Lee, Spike DDB
    Executive Creative Director: Dabo Che, Spike DDB
    Creative Director: Rachel Donovan, Spike DDB
    Creative Director, Digital: Matthew Zelley
    Account Team: Megan Wiggin, Clifford Stevens, Emily Shahady, Kristen Selasky, Riyhana Bey, Geneika Lewis, Kaitlyn Sherman, Chad McLean
    Project Management: Paul Pantzer, Christy Costello
    Planner: Anne Feighan
    Executive Producer: Andrew Barnett
    Content, Social Media: John Dukakis, Jamie Scheu, Lora Stock
    Operations Manager, Assistant Producer: Robyn Ross
    Director of Operations, Integrated Production: Lizzie Haberman, Spike DDB

    Production Company: 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks
    Executive Producer: Alex Wright
    Director: Spike Lee
    Director of Photography: Daniel Patterson
    Makeup: JoJo Rogriguez
    Stylist: Jessica Thornhill

    Editing House: Lost Planet
    Editors: Jacks Genega, Ben Rodriguez
    Producers: Krystn Wagenberg, Kate McCormick
    Graphics Supervisor: Reginald William Butler

    Music Houses: Amber Music; HiFi
    Creative Director: Paul Robb, HiFi
    Music Producer: Michelle Curren and Mike Perri, Amber; Jack Bradley, HiFi
    Music Composer: Robert DiPietro, HiFi

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    GE generally does a good job of telling stories around technology that's diverse and specialized. A new collection of two-minute spots from BBDO New York is no exception.

    There are three videos in the series so far, all beautifully shot and edited. One introduces a jet-skiing Japanese doctor who uses the brand's portable medical equipment to tend to patients on the country's islands.

    A second interviews the inhabitants of another island halfway around the world, in Scotland, that gets power from underwater turbines made by GE. The third features a young boy in China taking his first flight to meet his soccer heroes, thanks to GE's jet technology.

    The ads are a little heavy-handed in their sentimentality at moments and could probably accomplish the same thing in a smaller window, but the slower pacing isn't altogether unpleasant. They also aren't quite as inventive as the brand's recent, trippy spot that envisioned some of the same products through the eyes of a child.

    But they do have the narrative appeal and human element that was missing from the clips of GE's research lab equipment smashing random objects, or the the shipping container dance that the brand choreographed. The global scope also brings to mind IBM's recent 60-commercial opus for the Masters, but with a somewhat less granular, more humble approach not aimed at proving that the brand is in fact everywhere at once—though it's still easy to imagine that it is.



    Agency: BBDO, New York
    Client: GE                     
    Chief Creative Officer, Worldwide: David Lubars
    Executive Creative Director: Michael Aimette
    Senior Creative Director: Chris Lisick
    Group Director of Content Production: Anthony Nelson
    Producer: George Sholley
    Associate Creative Directors:  Judd Counsell, Lance Vining
    Head of Music Production: Rani Vaz
    Senior Account Director, Worldwide: Emma Armstrong
    Account Director: Katie Hankinson
    Account Manager:  Tessa Cosenza
    Assistant Account Executive: Joslyn Dunn
    Production Company: Greenpoint Pictures
    Director: The Hudson Dusters
    Director of Photography: Logan Roos
    Music House: The Music Bed
    Editing, Visual Effects House: Greenpoint Pictures
    Editor, "Moon Power in Scotland": Logan Roos
    Editor, "Zeng's First Flight": Philip Knowlton
    Editor, "Kumiko's First Ultrasound": Philip Knowlton
    Sound Design: One Thousand Birds

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    Instagram ads, just six months old and limited to a select group of 15 brands, are already showing promising results, according to exclusive data given to Adweek by the social photo-sharing site. Internal performance figures on ad partners Taco Bell, Ben & Jerry’s and Hollister provide a peek under the hood of how this platform will fare when it goes wide in late spring. More ads are on the way, thanks to Instagram’s $40 million megadeal with Omnicom.

    Taco Bell saw a 29 percentage point gain in ad recall for the April rollout of its breakfast menu, per data from Instagram’s user panel that pits a control group against a test group. The fast-food chain’s promos sometimes got engagement rates 400 percent higher compared to its organic posts. According to Union Metrics, Taco Bell’s Instagram following—currently at 411,000—jumped 45 percent during its monthlong ad campaign. The data company also reports that Instagram advertisers—including Michael Kors and Ben & Jerry’s—are averaging 60 percent higher engagement rates for their organic posts in the three days following their paid promos.

    Dressed for success.

    The early bird promo.

    Organic Growth

    Juliet Corsinita, Taco Bell marketing vp and head of media, said the ads performed particularly well with young men. “It was a delight for us that we reached that elusive audience,” Corsinita explained. “We felt like this was a great investment, one that complemented our overall media strategy.”

    Hollister, which was the first teen-focused brand to test the ad unit, saw its promo for a spring line of girls’ dresses achieve an ad recall lift of 32 percentage points.

    “It’s one of the best visual platforms for social,” said Craig Brommers, Hollister svp of marketing. “The initial budget was modest, but based on the success, we are going to increase the spend as we head into summer.”

    Still, not all youth-oriented brands may sign on, particularly those already enjoying killer organic engagement such as Red Bull and GoPro. “They’re already repurposing video clips and photos from their other channels and providing content that their audiences are highly interested in and want to engage with,” said Liz Eswein, executive director at digital shop Laundry Service.

    “The level of [brand] investment depends on how Instagram develops the ad product,” noted Eric Perko, vp, director of media, at DigitasLBi, which led Taco Bell’s effort. When Instagram rolls out video ads, which are expected later this year, it could further bolster revenues. “Anything with video is of interest to Taco Bell,” Corsinita asserted.

    Meanwhile, corporate giants like Philips are waiting to give Instagram’s ads a shot. “We’ve had huge organic success on Instagram in Thailand,” remarked Blake Cahill, head of digital at Philips. “And we are constantly experimenting with how paid can amplify our global content.”

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    Here's an amusing bit of mischief. Coca-Cola brought together fans on both sides of one of soccer's fiercest rivalries by making them give each other sodas.

    "Fair Play Machines," a campaign from McCann in Milan, shows the brand placing a pair of its signature high-tech, manipulative vending machines at opposite ends of San Siro Stadium in Milan while club teams Inter Milan and A.C. Milan were facing off there. Fans of each team could hit a button to serve a Coke to an opposing fan at the other machine—effectively forcing opponents to do something nice for one another.

    The clip is full of the happy vibes to be expected from Coke ads, and a nice nod to good sportsmanship—in a league where its opposite has been disturbingly true lately.

    It's also reminiscent of the brand's "Small World Machines" campaign from last year, which tried to ameliorate the India-Pakistan conflict with a similar set of interconnected machines—though softening a sports feud is maybe a less pretentious bit of peacemaking for a sugar water company.

    Credits below.

    Client: Coca-Cola
    Roel Annega – CSE Marketing Director
    Andreas Johler – CSE My Coke Director
    Guido Rosales – EUG IMC Director
    Claudia Navarro – CSE IMC Director
    Francesco Cibò – CSE Content Excellence Manager
    Camilla Zanaria – CSE Content Excellence Manager
    Agency: McCann Worldgroup Milan
    Global Creative Director: Miguel Bemfica,
    Creative Director: Gastón Guetmonovitch, Miguel Usandivaras
    Art Director: Cristina Caballero
    Copywriter: Curro Piqueras
    Graphic Designer: Marina Tercelán
    Account Manager: Sanziana Fanica
    Account Director: Andrei Kaigorodov
    Agency Producer: Massimo Busato
    Production Company: Filmmaster Productions
    Director: Edoardo Lugari,
    Executive Producer: Karim Bartoletti
    Producer: Elena Marabelli
    Editor: Francesco Cusanno, Toboga
    Music: Alberto Cimarrusti, Bronze Radio Return

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    For Heineken's peripatetic "Man of the World," it's time for a staycation.

    In this new spot from Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam—the seventh film in "The Legends" series—the charming, resourceful and worldly male lead isn't globetrotting any longer. He's exploring his own city for a change, and finding plenty of unexpected adventures along the way, as he endeavors to return a set of lost business cards to a woman named Eve.

    The point, says Heineken, is that Men of the World should never stop exploring their own urban backyard. "We know that while Heineken drinkers are familiar with many of the hot spots in their cities, they may not venture outside their usual routine on a daily basis to explore the unexpected," says Colin Westcott-Pitt, vp of marketing at Heineken. "With the 'Cities of the World' campaign, we're aiming to inspire them to move away from their usual habits this summer to discover and unlock the secrets of their own cities."

    As part of the campaign, Heineken is also produced a set of specially designed, limited-edition bottles, each featuring a print of one of six global cities: New York, Shanghai, Berlin, Amsterdam, London and Rio de Janeiro. Through July 4th, every City Bottle will feature an under-the-cap code, offering the potential for daily prizes.

    The new spot was filmed in Hong Kong by Traktor. The two-minute version will run only online, while 60- and 30-second cuts will air on TV.

    Client: Heineken
    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Amsterdam
    Director: Traktor

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    Brad Pitt's brother did it. Now it's Kevin Bacon's brother's turn.

    Michael Bacon, the less famous of the Bacon brothers—though not entirely unknown, as he is one-half of The Bacon Brothers, the band—has signed up for an amusing campaign by Oscar Mayer to advertise another less famous bacon: turkey bacon.

    The video below, from 360i, sets up the goal of the campaign, which is to get people to follow Michael on Twitter and catch his more famous actor brother. (This will be a challenge. Kevin has about 431,000 followers. Michael currently has about 1,300.)

    "We really feel for Michael, and we want to support him as much as possible," says Tom Bick, senior director of integrated marketing and advertising at Oscar Mayer. "You just have to embrace each one for its own individual qualities. And that's what we do with our entire line of bacon products—each one is spectacular, because it's made by the bacon experts at Oscar Mayer."

    Being used almost literally as a piece of meat doesn't seem to bother Michael, though. Good luck to him.

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    The compressed hydrogen-powered Honda FCX runs so clean, its exhaust contains only water—and it's so clean, it's drinkable. To celebrate this, Honda Australia and Leo Burnett Melbourne came up with a memorable stunt—creating a new bottled-water brand, H2O.

    As seen in the case study below, the automaker gave the water away in movie theaters around Australia (as free samples, no less) as a way of showing people what they're doing for the environment. There are also plans to make the water available at Honda service stations and dealerships.

    Copy on the bottle reads: "Delicious, fresh H2O from a pristine mineral spring, cool mountain glacier or … the exhaust pipe of the Honda FCX. The world's first hydrogen powered car that emits only water. Water so clean and pure, you could put it in a bottle and drink it. Now isn't that refreshing?"

    Note the use of "could." It doesn't appear that this water is actually the byproduct of FCX. Still, a neat idea. The product is nicely designed, too, with an effective minimalist aesthetic. I really like how well the Honda logo works as the hydrogen symbol in H20.

    Via Popsop.

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    State.com has set all our hilarious social media frustrations to classical music.

    Along with all having to look at what other people care about, which turns out is never what you care about, there’s angst about hashtagging, tail-wagging and "Am I bragging?" All of it leads up to the message that no one cares about your social media posts. State suggests we use another part of our brain, though they don’t say which part.

    Seriously, do you have any idea from this promo what the State app actually does? Turns out it allows you to rate and comment on topics without posting or sending your comments to social media, and then it turns those ratings into graphs … because graphs.

    So, if you hate social media and love graphs, log off your networks and download the State app. Or you know, at least stop Instagraming pictures of lamps.

    Credits below.

    Client: State.com
    Director and Editor: Alex Gorosh
    Director of Photography: Matt Garrett
    Executive Producer: Max Joseph
    Producer: Josh Fruehling

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    OK, it's time to play "Tree, Not a Tree."

    New York City has so few trees that people there might have forgotten what a tree is, exactly. At least, that's the tongue-in-cheek idea behind the New York Restoration Project's new campaign from ad agency Tierney.

    The effort involves tagging objects around the city (especially in low-tree/high-traffic neighborhoods) with labels that read, "Not a Tree." Accompanying text says, "There aren't enough trees in the city. Let's change that," along with the NotATree.org URL.

    "Yes, a Tree" tags will go on saplings planted as part of NYRP's MillionTreesNYC project. Text on those reads, "Thank you. This is exactly what our city needs."

    The campaign also includes more traditional media, including TV, radio ("That little red thing on the sidewalk that dogs like to tinkle on? Not a tree"), print, billboards and online quiz banners. It runs May through June, which is prime planting season.

    The New York Restoration Project, founded by Bette Midler, is recruiting New Yorkers as volunteers for MillionTreesNYC, which hopes to plant 1 million new trees by 2017.

    More images and credits below.

    Client: New York Restoration Project

    Agency: Tierney, Philadelphia
    ECD: Patrick Hardy
    CD/CW: Andrew Cahill
    AD: Tracy Shinko
    Agency Producer: Tom Adjemian
    Editor: Aaron Hann
    Project Mgr.: Ben Wollman
    Account Dir.: Rick Radzinski

    Post: Shooters, Philadelphia
    Producers: Rebecca Lyons, Matthew Licht, Eileen Dare
    Colorist: Janet Falcon
    Sound engineers: Bob Schachner, Mike Taylor

    Radio: Mister Face, div. Sound Lounge, New York
    Exec Producer: Michael Schmidt
    Producer: Torria Sheffield
    Recording engineer: Collin Blendell


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