Saturday, 11 February 2012

QR codes now a Fashion Statement

The QR code a requirement to any advertising campaign today seen on billboards, print ads and in commercials. While now you can have QR codes on your cuff links which can quickly link a person via their smartphone to your website. 

Available at Etsy from two separate e-retailers. First, better looking. Second, cheaper.

Friday, 10 February 2012

In the Spirit of Valentine’s Day & The Movie Hall Pass

Moosejaw Mountaineering an American mountaineering retailer has launched a very different type of Valentine’s Day campaign. No it’s not about making you’re significant other aware of how much you love them, it’s about convincing them to let you fool around with someone else. Please see permission form below:

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Bike or Cellphone

I want the bike more than the phone! So amazing! BlackBerry needs some of this innovativeness! The bike looks amazing and being glow-in-the-dark means you aren't going to be hit by a car. Maybe that’s why the iPhone is winning the smartphone war “They are tools AND toys”. Which would you buy?

Side note: I googled it Krylon makes glow in the dark spray paint. And its available at your local Wal-Mart. It only comes in one colour though. (Disclaimer: I have never tried it, I don't know if it will work)

TD Bank (I think I like cranky old men better)

I was watching Gossip Girl on the CW the other night and a TD Bank advertisement came on. Now I know I’ve seen this ad before but I hadn’t paid much attention, blah blah Regis and Kelly blah blah lower minimum balance… And then I paused, where were my favourite cantankerous old men that scoff at every innovation TD makes? I had only seen them in an advertisement two days ago, and I had seen Regis a week ago…Usually marketers try to have relatively consistent campaigns they want there to be some flow in the commercials, some similarities. And Regis was old but he wasn’t cantankerous. The difference: One campaign was for Americans the other Canadians.

Canadian Campaign:
This is a 2010 commercial but there are 2012 ones running right now.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

American Pride = Politics?

I have commented on Chrysler's Halftime commercial back when Adweek announced it as their number one ad of the Super Bowl. I thought it was a brilliant follow up to the Eminem-Chrysler commercial featured during last year’s Super Bowl. There was the patriotic element in both, but this year Chrysler painted a picture of American perseverance.  I thought the message in the commercial was loud and clear: “Buy American, support American jobs,”.

Luckily I had FOX News to show me just how wrong I was. Karl Rowe a Fox News commentator said, “It is a sign of what happens when ... the president of the United States and his political minions are, in essence, using our tax dollars to buy corporate advertising and the best wishes of the management which is benefited by getting a bunch of money that they’ll never pay back,”. Clint Eastwood claims the ad and his own political views are not pro-Obama. In fact, the Huffingpost reported that Clint Eastwood is on record for opposing the Chrysler bailout.

Breast Cancer Screening

I have realized I have neglected print ads in this blog and I have decided to remedy this. I’m the girl in the doctor’s office who reads all the pamphlets. That’s how I know I may need to consider going to AA because I answered yes to 3 out of the 12 questions. To be fair the one answer was a “once” not a “yes”.

I even read a pamphlet on breast feeding. However, I am never impressed with what I read, it’s always rather technical and the visuals are lacking. (Yes even in the breast feeding pamphlet, boys). But during my last visit I saw this pamphlet and loved the visual so I decided to share. The bigger polka dot on the bra jumped out at me and cut through my perceptual barrier. This is an extremely clever visual when coupled with the tagline communicates the point of the entire 8 page pamphlet in one image. If you can't see under the image the line that follows is "It's never this obvious".

You Know You’re a Marketing Major When…

This video is called: Sh*t Nobody Says About Advertising. Turns out, I say a lot of it.

1)      “I’m thirsty, cause of all that great product placement”, I paraphrased this line while watching American Idol, “All the product placement makes me want a Coke”.

2)      “That was a really great pun”. Check! Along with “Wow, I love the metaphor” and “that character was really relatable I connected with the ad”.  

3)      “I hate that beer ads don’t even try to objectify women”. I haven't said this. However, one of the people commenting on last nights commercials for Adweek said something along these lines. Apparently they were disappointed Bud Light did not objectify women this year. The approximately six advertisements that featured girls in bikinis were not enough…

4)      And really?! “Any of you guys want to start a flash mob?”. I don’t care where your career or education has taken you, this should be a question you ask at least twice in your life. I don’t know about you, but after seeing that one news report I expect my proposal to have a flash mob sequence.  And a Tiffanys ring, but that was a given. (Sort of joking--It is important to have dreams).

5)      “I wonder what’s new in my spam folder”…Yep I’m guilty of that one.

Monday, 6 February 2012

Adweek's Top 5 Commericals

The dust has settled and Adweek has announced their Top 5 Super Bowl commercials. Being Canadian I was forced to watch my commercials online and totally miss the Clint Eastwood Chrysler ad. However, I conceded to its rank as number 1. This commercial takes off where Eminem-Chrysler ad left off last year at this time, there is that patriotic vibe but with an additional layer of brotherhood. Americans united in a common struggle. The football metaphor of this being Halftime resonated with football fans and tapped into the pre-existing ideals of what it means to be American. (So I assume as I am neither an American nor a football fan. But Madonna killed it at Halftime!). The underlying message is clear buy American, support Americans. I think Chrysler’s demographic will especially relate to this. Plus with a voice like Clint Eastwood’s how do you go wrong? Answer: You don’t.     

Topical Ads Rise to the Top (My Super Bowl Top 3)

Unable to sleep I have decided to declare my top 3 favourite Super Bowl ads before the dust clears and pollsters and more experienced critics announce their picks. All my favourite ads had something in common they were topical. There was some relevant twists that really made all three ads pop. 

Number 3: Audi 2012

As much as I want Buffy to come in and stake all the vampires and be done with it I have to give Audi props. The fact that these weren’t just any vampires but Twilight vampires, as seen by the tree climbing, annoys me more than words. I do question the effectiveness of the Twilight reference as it’s a bit stale and does not translate to any one old enough to drive. (To my knowledge and sincere hope). However, the reason I give this commercial the third place is because all the theatrics actually lead to a point: Audi’s headlights have LED lights. There were some ads where all sense of the product and their unique selling proposition was lost. Though honorable mention has to go to the Toyota Camry commercial, it almost got my vote for third. In fact, in the light of day I may very well change my mind. I will resist making a vampire joke…

Fiat Falls Flat

You might have missed the Fiat 500 Abarth commercial among all the other car commercials of the Super Bowl.  And why should you remember it? I’m sure under normal circumstances a sexy foreign chick dropping whip cream in her cleavage would spark some memories. However, with two ads featuring Adrianna Lima and many ads featuring scantily clad women it’s hard to remember one overly clothed (by comparison) and way over sexualized woman out of many. Yet that’s all the Fiat commercial seemed to offer. 

I am a feminist I will warn you that up front. But I also enjoy most the ads. where the women were objectified. Even the Toyota Camry commercial that featured a couch made of bikini clad women (it also comes in male).  And one of my favourite commercial’s is Method’s All Purpose cleaner commercial that got pulled after feminists complained it promoted sexually harassing women. But I found the Fiat 500 Abarth commercial a little much.  And it certainly didn’t help Barbie’s image. Like the plastic doll Barbie. Because if you hadn’t heard Barbie drives a Fiat. And while Fiat have never been in my consideration set, the fact that JLo and Barbie were now driving Fiats made me reconsider my oversight. I mean both JLo and Barbie are hot and successful. With this ad. Fiat has lost all the headway they had gained. From a brand for empowered-have-it-all women to a brand for…The nerdy guy?

And Barbie can’t be too happy either. I mean Barbie has had her problems with feminists. She recently was reconstructed to have smaller boobs and wider hips so not to create an unattainable body image. (Although from what I can see, only Heidi Montag was ever negatively affected). I have also seen Barbie’s semi-recent campaign where Matel is trying to make Barbie a good role model again. The commercials highlight all of Barbie's careers.  Now her car of choice is being associated with the objectification of women. Careful Fiat, we all know what happened to Ken after something like 60 years—She replaced with a surfer named Blain!  

Update: Ken and Barbie got back together. But she made him work.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Apple's Old Ads Inspiration for Rivals

There is no question Apple is an amazing brand, but watch the Business News Network for a day and someone will point out they used to be David and are now Goliath. It used to be Apple was the struggle brand trying to beat IBM with their campaign “Think Different” that slapped the Apple logo on iconic people like John Lennon. Yet now it seems using Apple products isn't that different. Or at least that is what marketers are trying to tell us.

No one can forget the Mac vs. PC commercials---but just in case. (I could only find the whole collection so hope you have some time to burn):

Now Samsung is using this strategy to fight back in their commercial that links Apple to the Hipster. You know the loafer wearing, fedora toting, scarf as an appendage, knitted hat as hair Hipster. (I actually kind of love the look--minus the hats--- but it’s too hard not to mock).  This commercial really questions if iPhones are cool. Does it do enough to shake the strong brand associations Apple has created? No. But as iPhones, iPods and Macs become more and more common place how long will Apple items be cool? Like the Mac vs. PC ads Samsung plays on the brand personalities their respective companies created and the result is amazing. Check out the Samsung commercial:

Old Spice is not a 1 Trick Pony

Even people who live under rocks know that Old Spice’s campaign with Isaiah Mustafa sky rocketed Old Spice sales and revitalized a brand which has been linked with old men for a long time. But I was worried their ad company Wieden + Kennedy had dropped the ball when I saw this disaster:  

But this recent article on Adweek has restored my faith. Check out the new amazing commericals.

Book Trailers

I recently joined a book online community for RazOrbilt (which is the teen lit part of Penguin Publishing). I have always been a big reader but I did not understand the nuisances of the literary world. One of my more shocking discoveries was something called a Book Trailer. Similar to a movie trailer but for books. Just recently I have seen two spilt second book trailer ads in Canada, but a month ago I had only seen these online. Now the book bloggers will argue for the Book Trailers but I question the use of them. For the most part, those who are already interested in the book will go looking for these trailers. As most people type the author or book's name into youtube to see the trailer.  So the commercial is taking the consumer from Interest even Desire to Action in the AIDA cycle. Where most commercials start at the Attention stage. My point being these people who watch these trailers are already way more likely to buy the book as they have specifically sought out these trailers, as such I question the real merit and return on investment. Essentially Book Trailers are preaching to the choir. Plus in all the Young Adult Book Trailers is an epidemic of guy liner! The video on the side is a montage of different books, check it out!