16 February, 2010

The 80's knew a thing about branded content

Ran across this on the Twitter-wires (via). Glad I did. Maybe it's just the Valentine's Day hangover, but I totally dug the story arc in this series of ads for Nescafe.

Thinking about dusting off my fake British accent from the college bar days - though my wife insists it sounds Scottish with a speech impediment. She's always been partial to Starbucks though.

UPDATE: Ken pointed out the American version with Taster's Choice has the same actors, different cultural nuances: namely, our female protagonist is divorced. We Yanks and our commitment issues.

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15 February, 2010

Seacrest and mom get flashed

Scope flash-mobbed Dick Clark's steadier half while out to lunch with his madre. Cute execution. Even smarter because it ends up on the American Idol host's YouTube channel - not on a Scope-sponsored venue. No word on whether Seacrest knew it was coming, but considering it showed up on his website lickity-split, we can make a pretty educated guess.

BONUS: For a fun drinking game, Google "Seacrest flash mob". Take a drink for every blog that has the same exact copy accompanying the video. Nothing like copy-pasted PR.

via Adgabber.

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05 February, 2010

Tales From the Spam Filter: What a Country!

Sadly, this is probably closer to the truth than anyone wants to admit.

Clickengrad to enlargeski, comrade.

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04 February, 2010

Super Bowl's Greatest Commercials or Just More Advertising?

I was really looking forward to watching CBS's Super Bowl's Greatest Commercials 2010 last night, as it was supposed to countdown the entire decade's best Super Bowl commercials. As we all know, the Super Bowl's commercials are often as exciting, or even more exciting than the game itself (and this is coming from a person who actually looks forward to preseason football, and, despite living in Baltimore, hasn't missed a New York (football) Giants game in six years...on TV, of course).

However, I was quickly disappointed by the spots chosen--the only early standout being Tide's Talking Stain commercial, which ranked 10th.

What was more disappointing was that the entire broadcast seemed to be a giant commercial. Now, you might be saying, Did you read the name of the show? And I'd say you're right; however, as the show went on, I began to get the distinct feeling that maybe some of these advertisers coughed up some cash to be featured. Now maybe many spots from companies like Budweiser and Pepsi were featured because those companies have aired numerous spots during numerous Super Bowls. But check out my list below and you decide if this "special" might have been a little more advertising and a little less...well, special.

Budweiser: 7 (Superfan twice)--plus 2 sneak peaks
Bud Light: 5
E*Trade: 4 (Baby Burp Up twice)
Pepsi/Pepsi Max: 4 (Cindy Crawford twice)--5 if you include Mount Dew (a Pepsi-Cola product)
Doritos: 3--plus 2 sneak peaks
Careerbuilder: 2--plus 3 sneak peaks

Jim Nantz bad balloon boy reference--1
Needless display of CSI: Miami actress noting 2 commercials she liked, which they just so happened to have shown right before her segment--1
Danica Patricks who should fire her dresser and make-up artist--1

Okay, E*Trade's Dancing Monkey spot is one of my favorite of all time; the Baby series was simple, memorable and effective; and I'd forgotten about Out the Wazoo. And it's brilliant. I also still like the FedEx Cavemen, but where was Sprint's Crime Deterrent Phone? Where was GM's Robot? Where was Terry Tate: Office Linebacker?

Terry Tate: Office Linebacker - Watch more Funny Videos

Now Budweiser has had some great spots over the years, but maybe we could've dug a little deeper to show more than one, non-Clydesdale commercial. The Bud Light spots were okay, but they weren't among Bud Light's best, and none were even close to Swear Jar. And I remember thinking the first time I saw Pepsi Max's I'm Good spot that it was just trying too hard.

I barely remembered any of the Doritos commercials, possibly because not one featured Ali Landry. And the fact that Doritos had 2 sneak peaks makes me think Frito Lay paid some money to be featured in this special. Ditto for Careerbuilder, who had a very long commercial featured, but truly not one of their best, along with 3 sneak peaks. Which makes me think, did they leave anything for the actual Super Bowl? That's like putting all the funny jokes in the trailer. I'm looking at you WAYANS BROTHERS!

In the end, it's my own fault for getting excited about this. It's really just another ploy to drum up interest in the game from non-football fans, which I will be recording and rewinding to watch the commercials. But next year, how 'bout we make a little effort and find the actual best commercials as opposed to the ones our advertisers told us to air?

And in case you were wondering, watching in Baltimore City, the most paid advertising was for personal care products, meaning advertisers assumed the viewing audience for this show was ill, irregular and messy. I'll be in the men's room.

--George Convery, Copywriter

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01 February, 2010

Pee-wee's pad

Some say the iPad could resuscitate newspapers. Others pitch it as the Kindle-killer. I'll take what's behind Door #3.

Gotta give it to Apple. They managed to put iPad in the hands of established influencers as well as the dark horses like Pee-Wee Herman, whose return to pop culture relevancy would provide an extra layer of attention - and one hell of a ride.

Plus, it gives us all a glimpse into Apple's new strategy for handling iPad haters and feminine hygiene jokes: "I know you are but what am I."

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