advertising and other stuff. no, really.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

New Benetton ad released.

Sorry. I meant Madonna family pic. She’d never exploit them in an ad or photo-op like that, would she?

(Update/disclaimer: This is just me being my usual wiseass self. While this could be something right up Benetton’s politically motivated alley, this is not a real ad for them. Steve and Adrants, thanks for the link love and sorry for the confusion.)

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Vote on the Agelina Jolie adoption issue.

Should Jon Voight adopt a new daughter?
Free polls from

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Ok, we invented a liver in a lab...

... can we now get to work on inventing a plane that doesn’t crash? (via Drudge)

Teddy needs a loan.

Hmmm. Rush a donation, or rent Scary Movie 4.

Just not sure.

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Some PR opportunities come just once for Tiki.

Like leaving the Giants. The recent Cadillac spot has Tiki saying one thing and doing another in real life though. See spot run here. I actually like its understated tone where he talks about always being ready, and then one day getting that shot as a starter.

But a week after the spot breaks, he then confirms a story about leaving the Giants. PR move all along, or just dumb luck? In retrospect, after having seen him appear more and more on TV in the last year, from commercials to morning shows, it sure feels like the latter. Hey, his choice, right? Who am I after all. It’s not like he can’t do the job either. Watch him for even a few seconds on camera, it’s obvious he has the commentator thing down and will likely have a great broadcast career ahead if he chooses.

So why, if he got his chance on the field, leave it behind? Unless the spot was his way of looking back and saying so long. Leave healthy on his own terms? Valid. I get it. Average NFL career is what, less than three years? Thing is, his health and productivity seem good. The Giants have a legit shot at the playoffs, and a chance to build something beyond that with Eli. (Unlike Barry Sanders who retired after 10 years because Detroit had the opposite commitment to winning New York has.)

Still, his choice. But after hearing him respond to the flap over how he “quit on his team” from ESPN’s Tom Jackson and Michael Irvin, (not to mention defending himself against prominent journalists like Gary Meyers speculating on his motives), seems like Tiki may not be ready to join their ranks if this is how he reacts. What happens when Howie Long puts him in a Gilligan ‘Hey little buddy!” headlock?

Wouldn’t be easier to just stay and face the Cardinals twice a year?

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Monday, October 30, 2006

New PR & commentary link site.

Check it out. Scott over at Media Orchard has created Fark for the rest of us. A site where you can submit links on advertising commentary and such that have a PR spin to them. It’s geared more towards marketing and ad people than the general admission Fark where anything goes, so Widget 2.0 release notices can go somewhere else. (You might even see the occasional honkin’ MTLB oval badge on some stories there, link whore that I am.) Judging by the number of posts there in just over a day of launch, looks like it could be a nice way to drive some traffic your way.

Now, go write something gooder and submit.

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MySpace is SO last month

Oh well, at least MS got their payday first. (Who said Amway was dead.) Oh you kids and your Facebook. (via Drudge)

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Budweiser: the original performance enhancer.

Forget McGuire’s open locker downfall. I came across this shot of Maris in The Mag with the guy who caught, then later returned the record-setting 61st homer. (For Cubs fans, Sal Durante was a fan who actually waited until it was out of reach before grabbing it. Even got a ball with his own sig for his efforts too.)

But I digress. Look closer, right above Sal’s head to his right: a crushed Bud can. Now, look to the left of his face on the lower shelf: cartoon of Camels. Back when men were men and hit the ball for real. Camels and Bud? That was the only Andro they needed. And for you young punks, those cans were made of iron, steel and leftover ship hulls. I’m not joking. Punks. Not the styrofoam aluminum versions you ‘crush’ today.

Oh, and jocks doing ads only after they’ve left the game? I don’t think so. Man Laws? How about Man Ads, Logo freaks.

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Most dangerous cities.

Awesome. I’ve lived in half. I’m surprised Reno couldn’t crack the top 300 though. (via Drudge)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

If you can’t rock backwards...


Rock on.

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“Hey, ya gotta cross Taurus off your list.”

Finally, a bold move as the last Taurus is produced. Now Ford can start work on the next in a long line of classics.

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“Diarrhea commercials unnecessary.”

But are they. I came across that while Googling for something about something and came across... something. It’s a page full of feedback about ads and what students dislike about them, from persuasion analysis classes taught by Dr. Hugh Rank. Many responses reiterate the usual slant against marketing and advertising, which is basically: next to politicians, lawyers and car salesmen, advertising is as trusted as John Mark Karr is babysitting your kids.

Still, it’s interesting to hear the wide range of opinions, from pre-teens to adults. Could some of them phrase things better? Sure, ok, but focus on what they’re saying. Some funny yet some insightful things. (And the picture? Pepto Bismol ice cream.)

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Saturday, October 28, 2006

Weekly What The...?

• What about a video messing with Home Depot (from these guys)
• Cool trailers like this for the upcoming film 300.
(Thanks to
• Jets now have cheerleaders to match their QB. Oh-boy: “J-E-T-S: WHAT’S THAT SPELL? HEY _ _ _ HOLE, GET THE _ _ _ K OFF MY CAR!” (Media Orchard)
• Hershey’s now has its own stamp. (Ok, but what about Meinke and George’s pic? (Junk Food Blog)

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Friday, October 27, 2006

Viral for viruses.

Literally. According to Drudge, At least there’s one thing candidates can agree on – their hand sanitizer. Judging by the tone of most political ads these days, hands aren’t the only dirty things to worry about. Purell. YouTube. Hurry. C’mon, mock political spots with subliminal product flashes, candidates denying ever using it, etc. This stuff writes itself.

Purell, email me, would ya?

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Back before The Matrix there was this old-school claymation intro for Chiller Theatre, a late-night movie show from WPIX in NY, circa, um, way back in the seventies. Click on the image to see clip on YouTube.

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The Podfather Returns - Free Ricky Gervais.

Coming up this Tuesday, Ricky Gervais is offering free downloads on his site of the first of three special edition podcasts. If you haven’t already checked him out, now’s the time. Especially those people into The Office who don’t know the real origins of the American version of the show, this is the guy who started it all.

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How many blogs do you read each day?

Now that I’ve crossed over into official blog-obsession by reading all the blogs I can, I’m curious how many blogs people read each day. (And that can include visiting the actual blog or reading it via RSS feed, and also reading either the posts or comments on same, doesn’t matter).

I’m in the 15+ range looking to qualify for blogaholic status. Pathetic, I know. So take the poll below and see where you fall:

How many blogs do you read each day?
Free polls from

UPDATE: So far, it’s clear: the majority of people responding need help because they’re reading too damn many blogs. My kinda people though. So keep it up gang. And for the rest yet to vote? Politicians everywhere suggest voting early, and often.

Scary monster chiller horror theatre movie time.

Ok, maybe a few of you will be going to Halloween parties this weekend or over the next few days. Losers like me will be home watching scary flicks like The Dukes of Hazard remake. So for lost souls likely to rent The Break-Up because everything else at Blockbuster is gone, here’s a list of alternates in the horror category you may not have ever heard of that are worth a look.

(Now I could just do a Top 10 list and leave it at that, but that just wouldn’t be me now would it? Kürze ist heute verboten.)

Most of what you find among today’s horror genre seems to fall into several categories that range from freaky (The Ring, White Noise), to sadistic gorefests like (Saw, Hostel and High Tension, and so forth). I’ve seen these and 99.999% of everything else out there. That’s my job. Most are intense, have great effects and have definitely eclipsed anything from the Halloween, Jason and Chuckie franchises.

Barring The Grudge and all the films like it, there are some that are stylish as well as some that are just cool to look at if you’re an AD, or if you have ADD. Your choice. Hopefully, you won’t TP my house if you hate any of them, and just maybe you’ll even go “Hey, that didn’t suck as bad as I thought.”

Start with vampire flicks, because well, there’s a lot of them out there. The art crowd always picks Tony Scott’s The Hunger with David Bowie. Ok, he’s cool in everything, but just as cool is Christopher Walken and Annabella Sciorra in Abel Ferrara’s The Addiction shot in B&W. Check out a pre-tax problem Wesley Snipes in a pre-TV show version Blade that has a very cool intro.

For funky gore and and over the top pulpitude? Nothing beats Robert Rodriguez’s original From Dusk Til Dawn, with George Clooney and the always crazy ‘like - a - bag - of - wild - ferrets - with - my - head - inside - it crazy’ Juliette Lewis.

Going back, back, back against the wall is another funky little vampire flick with a wiseass Bill Paxton in Near Dark, also with Lance Henriksen of Millenium fame. (A horror-freak TV show rivaling any flick listed here and worth renting.)

There’s one more recent one that was pretty cool: Nochnoy Dozor, aka Night Watch, a kinda Mystery Men meets Blade. (Have to warn you that it’s dubbed in English from the Russian version, still, it may be the first flick where you really don’t notice it like you do in other foreign films.)

Moving on to general terror that would be the basis for TheRingTheGrudgeTheWhatever, there’s Se7en with Brad Pitt. Forget anything Morgan Freeman has done in the horror genre since, it really doesn’t compare. For designers, here’s the clichéd but true phrase you always hear: ‘see it for the groundbreaking title sequences by Kyle Cooper of Imaginary Forces’. Yep.

For Brad Pitt fans, there’s also a funky little turn he did as a mental patient in Terry Gilliam’s futuristic sci-fi 12 Monkeys, also with Bruce Willis. (And, for the evil Brad as serial killer, check out Kalifornia with a second appearance in this list by Juliette Lewis.)

The Silence of the Lambs.

There’s always the original Alien by the other Scott brother Ridley. (The sequel and it’s title ain’t bad either, Aliens.) For a journey into darkness though, you have to see Jacob’s Ladder with Tim Robbins, director’s cut. (I put that in my Top 5, if of course, I had a Top-anything list.)

Getting more modern, I really liked Shaun of the Dead (from 2004). Think Ricky Gervais meets Dawn of the Dead. (And to beat a dead horse even more, this is the humor-horror flick SoaP should’ve been.)

And, if you’re hosting a party, check out Danny Elfman’s Music For A Darkened Theatre Vol. 1. (Vol. II’s ok as well.) Dude scored a lot of movies, from Beetlejuice to Batman, and the collection is just whacky enough to work on Halloween.

Feel free to add your own suggestions to the list.

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Thursday, October 26, 2006

Tron advertising and marketing, may I help you?

Agency called Crayon launched today in virtual world Second Life. Started by Joe Jaffe and a few others, it’s positioned to take his new media approach and apply it to an agency setting in that fast-growing online community site.

Steve over at Adrants gives what I would say is a balanced assessment of the Crayon introduction in SL and what it may mean, and there’s subsequent follow-up discussions by some SL apostles on Soflow.

Anyway, others have gone or are going virtual as well, including the recent Open Intelligence Agency from Russell Davies. I like the approach. Ideas and people are what matter, not their setting. As long as you have an internet connection, there’s no restriction on where you can work. (We’re half-virtual now as it is. Who here hasn’t written up or reviewed concepts or presentations and emailed them from hotel rooms on the road?)

But after reading some of the comments and an article from one SL voice of the people, brands and now an agency that rush in to stake their real estate claims need to tread lightly. Like the real world, the NIMBY mindset is present: people don’t mind commerce, they just don’t want it in their backyard, even if it’s a virtual one.

I would hate to see an upstart agency suffer the wrath of the very community it lives in though. That’s a real world concern as much as a virtual one. Blend in, don’t stick out and piss off your neighbors. This should first be about: we’ve got good ideas, we’re here for the long haul, and what better space than a virtual one to dovetail with what we’re about.

Otherwise, isn’t it like the moving truck that rolls up one day: introverted teen wearing a Colbain t-shirt, sitting on the lawn and ripping grass out next to scattered boxes. Obnoxious mom yelling at the pit bull heading your way. Her husband just tore up your lawn because he’s busy eyeing the tools in your garage he plans on never returning. There goes the neighborhood and Bob’s your uncle.

To be honest, I don’t agree with some of the other new media pundits out there who herald every 2.0 invention as the next great thing. (As an AD in this life, I’ve spent a lot of late nights and weekends working ‘the next big thing’ into the upcoming Monday morning pitch from a white knight consultant there to save the day, only to watch the agency lose out because the bottom line was too rich for the client’s blood.)

Although I disagree the :30 is dead, Jaffe does have some interesting concepts and observations, (and one in particular regarding time-shifting. I think this is a tactic that could really change consumer experiences if brands take it beyond what’s happening now.) Hate to see it fail just because the neighborhood association got together and voted them off the block.

It’s great to have a funky location, be it NYC or through your ISP. But pretty soon, I think every brand will have access to good ideas from one or two people on the other end of an IM session while they both review the deck that was just emailed. Oh shit, wait, I just did that yesterday.

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Wonder Showzen.

Elmo’s dead. Ok, now you’re ready. If you grew up with Sesame Street or any Saturday morning cartoons, this David Lynch meets Pee-wee’s playhouse is a reincarnation of those Saturday mornings past. Albeit a more sick, twisted, perverted and funny-ass past. Check it out on MTV2 here and also YouTube. As the warning says, this show is definitely not for real kids.

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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Political Ads Gone Wild 2!

You kids need a timeout. Apparently Harold Ford’s political :30 spot on YouTube is too nice for his opponent Bob Corker. Was John Murtha right when he said the scumbags are at it again? Maybe so, since the RNC ran their own version of the ‘truth’ on Bob’s behalf. (Found via racialicious.) This is the same RNC who sent me that nice mailer last week.

And because things have gotten about as low as they possibly can, I propose a federal law for all future political advertising. (If pharma can burdon us with all its mandatory legalese, then political ads can also meet certain legal requirements.)

So here it goes: whether you’re a Repub, Dem or Independent, candidates and their parties may no longer talk about anything OTHER than their record, the issues or themselves. Period. No mentioning of other candidates or their parties either, and no veiled references like ‘some members of congress voted to...’. None of that. (And if ads include testimonials, they must be real people abiding by the same rules, no actors portraying someone allowed.)

You can call it the ‘Play nice or you lose your matching funds’ law or the ‘BG’s too naive law’. Either way, all I want to see in an ad from now on is just straight-up, tell me what YOU stand for.

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I’ll just grab something at the game.

$50 for four people is reasonable in Giants stadium right? I mean, it’s not like we went nuts and each had, a dog, fries and soda is it?

And since I’m spending more than Cuba’s GNP, could I also have the soda cap please? Let’s see, we’ll keep the cap but let you have the freaking glass beer bottle so that your throw reaches the field. Yeah, that works.

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Sports mascot deathmatch viral.

Ah. Virals, virals, virals. The wave continues. I subscribe to viralmonitor which means basically, I get emailed a ton of different viral things as they’re released. Still, I have yet to find much of anything that’s better than what you see on adrants or adfreak. The typical stuff I get is like this game that I got today. (Click on image to play.)

It’s called Mascot Kombat for Protrade, a stock market trading site for tracking pro athletes. All for fun? Real? Fake? Who knows.

Programming seems solid, the look, sharp. But one big disconnect is that the mascots seem so oddly connected to pro sports and football teams in particular. I know the NFL can be a mother when it comes to protecting/allowing use of its logos and colors, but the Redskin here is called Chief Sterotype. Swoop the Eagle, obviously from Philly, has a Cowboys star on his helmet.

And, if ProTrade is about all sports, why push the NFL so much? After playing a few rounds, the game works but all the directions up front make it seem a little too much. Is the trading on their site like this too? (Wanna make a realistic mascot game? Add in the sound effects from the Eagles game I was at where their own fans were telling Swoop he sucked.)

On the flip side, the Devil’s Advocate might respond, ‘hey, it worked you’re talking about it. Isn’t that what virals are supposed to do?’ Yes and no. When I was seven, I stabbed myself in the head by accident with an X-Acto. Now that got attention. But virals are supposed to drive far more people to a site and connect with a brand because they’re funny as shit or cool as hell.

Not be singled out as something that could be improved.

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Calling all Carrot Tops: Talent agency wants you.

In the future, everyone will be Carrot Top for 15 minutes. Calling all future movie stars, actors and directors on YouTube: you may already be scouted by Hollywood. Hey, why not. Worked for LonelgirlImNotReally15. While I’m having fun with the idea, it is the next logical step for talent searching. Carson Daly has already scoped out talent this way for his show. Maybe even legal too.

But given the low quality of most video and amateur talent on the Tube, (that’s right I said Tube), does this just become the equivalent of looking through the discount rack for the best of the average out there?

All I know is it’s gonna suck to be the one to have to sort through 1.5 million vids of teens complaining ‘This is my video and I don’t know what to saaaaaaaay’. (via Drudge)

And, if you need more Scary Top, try this one.

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Figure this out.

Take Freelance Fred’s pop quiz that asks the all-important question: wtf? Certainly not as wtf-ish as Rosey Grier with a second head, but close. After watching 17 times, I’m still not sure what the real message is, but damn, the spot’s sure got great production value though. (If you play it backwards you can hear narrator Scott Glenn say “I don’t even know what the message is.”)

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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Why soccer will never catch on.

As long as the lot of these English-looking prep school keep flocking through grassy fields in Newport, it won’t be catching on anytime soon. Who are these brave lads, these, these new faces of the soccer futbol revolution. I ask you America, who are these leaders of tomorrow, these future 60 Minutes cautionary tales who would venture forth with covered heads and necks but remain sockless.

Why, they’re Chaps men of course. (dramatic pause followed by hushed tones) Chaps men.

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Who said puns were dead?

Let those among you who have never punned cast the first syllable. (Ok, guilty as charged.) In an ad copyranter would approve of, I came across this timely Halloween gem. Note the value-add of the scary, gravity-defying horizontally dripping blood.


But what if the DVD sucks?

Hollywood Video now offers a Play Guard deal for .25¢ on every game or movie rental. Problem is, it only covers scratches or damage to the disc, nothing else. Wondering who is damaging rentals so much that they decided to offer this? And if so, wouldn’t you think if someone has oh, like 17 damaged rentals on their account, maybe Hollywood shouldn’t rent to them anymore?

Seems like just another impulse buy at the cashier if you ask me. And, just like extra insurance at the car rental place they try and upsell you on, you should take a pass. Now, if they had a guarantee where I could get my money back if the movie sucked, count me in.

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Sunday, October 22, 2006

Geico caveman, Fox News style.

Funny parody in this latest one. (View here.) What else is there to say? The spots are in a solid groove now. Way this character keeps going, why not just throw him in a movie? Hey, if CP+B is considering getting into film, this skit is definitely something Martin could run with. (With a few exceptions, it wouldn’t be any worse than most movies from former SNL cast members would it?) More importantly though, it might finally help purge my memories of Ringo’s attempt at prehistoric humor.

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America’s poundification continues.

Cool dads join the dAwG pound with their daughters’ need-for-speed tuner friends as Toyota follows up all the chest-thumping and ‘Hollas’ in recent TV land. See what you started Joe?

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Lexus helps you parallel park.

Man did my mom ever need that way back. Cool feature on a car. Next to Preston Tucker’s turning headlight, this seems like a pretty major advancement in the automotive world. Although you might not see it right away on the Lexus website. And, they have two different :30 second spots touting it. The first one has people remembering past obsolete technologies like rabbit ear antennas, 45 records, etc. The payoff line shows the Lexus driver remembering “when he used to parallel park”. Nice payoff. Second spot though is routine and almost like the demo on the site of how the tech works. Nod to the first one as it has the same spirit of their previous ‘ice cream truck’ spot.

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Some new old-time hockey.

Like most creatives I know, sports is a close second to, well, sports. Speaking of, I came across some good old-fashioned sports phraseology this weekend the likes of which would make Bob Uecker proud:

“I’m sure he was miffed, but the 20-year-old showed some good moxie”

“If that’s true, it hasn’t penetrated the sand surrounding my head as of yet”

Go now agent Starling and seek out more of Bob Crawford, play-by-play man for the minor league hockey team Hartford Wolf Pack over on sidearm delivery. (Not to mention a link to audio clips of his 3-octave delivery.) And just to bring it back around to me somehow, was there a better logo in hockey than the one for the old Hartford Whalers? (Designed by Peter Good.)

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That’s just me adjusting things again around the old blogstead. Wider and smaller to serve you better.


Well, time for more primary fun. Looks like both parties are upping the ante as time runs out. What to do, what to do. The Republican party of NJ, (not affiliated with any specific candidate), sent me a large 4-panel DM piece that doesn’t leave anything out in its bid to scare voters. Basically, I’ll be killed in my sleep by border-crossing illegal terrorists if I don’t vote GOP. (Click on image to see front/back.)

As for the Dems? Jack Murtha, (who apparently took over get-out-the-vote duty from John Kerry), emailed me a more clean layout with nice use of white space, but couldn’t resist getting down and dirty with a plea to avoid the ‘scumbags’. (Click image below to enlarge.) I have to give Dems credit for utilizing new-fangled media to get out their message, after all, Al Gore did invent the internet you know, but the GOP dances with who brung ’em working that terror angle.

Ok, Logo Nation, cast your vote for the better pitch.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Now selling logo space.

When I go, I want to be in the NASCAR-themed casket with the logos of my choice on the rear quarter panels. (Still working on which ones but if any brands want to contact me, I can work out a special blog rate for you.) For the capper, check out the inscription on the inside of the lid: “The Race is Over”. Yes it is, isn’t it.

And if that’s not enough my golfing friends, I give you...

Fairway to heaven.

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Friday, October 20, 2006

Cool Halloween display...

...or my neighbor’s yard. (I’m half-joking about the latter.) Investigators were sent out to examine this Halloween ‘crash site’ because it looked too real. Eh, I’d probably torch some stuff here and there, add a few bloody sheets. But a nice first effort. (Via Drudge)

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Twister porn.

How else to describe the funky sculptural work by artist Nancy Rubins. (Thanks to Jo.)


Bill Gates announces MyShoe, new MP3 player.

To offset the release of the clip iPod Shuffle from Apple, Microsoft® today announced a breakthrough in personal music enjoyment and social media. MyShoe®©™ is half-shoe, half-MP3 player. A spokesperson says that while it’s a step forward in the category, current users can only walk or listen to songs on it, just not do both at the same time.

A press release on the company website said the following: “We are addressing this problem and hope to have a fix in future releases of MyShoe.” (MyShoe is also supported by print efforts.)

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Schick: 4 blades, 4 headlines.

Schick direct mail piece came for the better half the other day. Looked cool. Buy a lot of stuff at Shoprite and eventually they send free stuff. Nice little brand awareness reward. Now, I like the humerous tone of the writing, but the only thing is, it can’t seem to figure out which headline to go with. Maybe one for every blade? Click to enlarge image, or if that’s too much, then here they are:

1) Be afraid leg hair. Be very afraid.
2) We only made it pink to keep his hands off it.
3) Open here and take her out for a spin.
4) The only thing standing between you and a high performance shave is this box.
5) We put the Chick in Schick.

(Sorry, last one was mine.)

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Thursday, October 19, 2006


On behalf of unhip old-school white guys everywhere, I apologize now. Jon doesn’t speak for all of us. Next up for Subway: Jared the ‘playa’.

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Byrne blog.

David Byrne. Graphic designer. Chair designer. Talking Heads. Yeah, that guy. It’s a journal & website that’s been out for some time actually, but I just came across it. (No way to make comments, so I guess ‘journal’ fits.) Really hate that on blogs journals, but regardless, worth seeing some of the stuff he’s into.

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Dawn: works on penguins too.

Who knew? See the Make A Difference campaign here at Thanks to Jo over at doych. (Not that one ad bitches.) Interesting because Dawn is something rescuers have apparently been using for 25 years to help clean penguins and other wildlife of environmental damage.

I like seeing brands used in a way that changes your perception of what you would normally expect. Just a hunch, but I suspect someone on the campaign noticed an obscure fact on the rescue effort from background research. When concepting, I always like to find odd stuff on a brand. Never know when it’ll come in handy.

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Showin’ love for free speech.

This post is approved by the Iranian Blog Ministry: We You live in a great the great imperialist Satan country. Regardless of your politics, you always know your voice will be heard You will show full support for our great leader and president and not speak out. Especially when you see Pictures like this found on j|turn will not be tolerated for they corrupt our great society.

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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Bill Murry gets EXXXcited.

(It was a pun. I went for it. Sue me.) More fun with keywords and text advertising. This article on Bill Murray incorporates in-text advertising. (Keywords bought by advertisers in stories you read. Standard stuff for news services.) Except for the one special keyword ‘actors’ in the last sentence of the fifth paragraph.
(click image to enlarge.)

So much for monitoring the keyword software. (The link may be fixed by now, but if not: WARNING: just hover over the link. Clicking it will take you to an adult site that’s NSFW.) Speaking of, if things don’t work out for Murray, at least he can always find jobs in another part of the film industry.

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“Hey, which one of you dudes forgot to pay the electric?”

This AP shot ought to make Rummy’s day of THE GLORIOUS WELL-LIT PEOPLES OF THE NORTH. Well, we wanted Lil’ Kim out of power.

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Napster redux: Universal sues video-sharing websites.

Score one for Lars and the boys. Saw this on Drudge:
“In separate lawsuits, Universal alleged that – recently acquired by Sony Pictures Entertainment – and had built up traffic by encouraging users to share music videos from its artists without their permission.”

Note to Universal: What do you think YouTube did prior to your deal with them?

What do you think any online community site that’s ‘free’ does? It’s a portal for someone else’s content until you build enough interest and traffic to then sell the site and come over from the dark side. People say the era is dead? Oh no. It’s alive and well, just operating under a new Facebook.

In this case, YouTube (fresh off a deal to be bought by Google), benefits further after signing a licensing deal with Universal, then gets Universal’s sharks to go after the competition. Nice.

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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Le Rip – Wynn accidentally damages Picasso.

I would be so fired, even with the duct tape fix. (via Drudge)

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When Did I Know?

That I’d be an art director? When my 7.6 in the 40 and 3” vertical wasn’t quite good enough to play pro ball. Oh, wait. I thought you meant...nevermind. I mean the recent Reebok campaign When Did I Know? NFL players talking about when they knew they’d be good enough. Supported by TV and print. This one may have gotten lost in the shuffle of Reebok’s larger “I Am What I Am” campaign, but check it out. It’s honest and direct.

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Monday, October 16, 2006

Patti Smith sees own shadow, six more weeks of CBGB farewell concerts.

So CBGB is closing. For good. No, really. This time they mean it. It’s moving to Vegas. Which means like everything else there, it’ll turn into another theme restaurant. “Look kids, the Joey Ramone booth. Don’t worry though, it’s not real vomit. It’s just a mousepad we have for sale on the way out. Oh, and don’t forget the syringes that are really pens.”

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Geotargeting - bad.

Ok, not that I’m currently looking for either, but having been through Flanders, this recent ad on Drudge is really stretching things. It’s an example of geotargeting that misses the mark, especially given the product.

Geotargeting can work. Take a site like Works for them because something like weather is not specific to just one town/zipcode. Or a local chain of retail stores that can blanket a specific region. On the other hand, a political ad for someone running for mayor wouldn’t work across the region since nobody cares about that election five towns over. And in this case, claiming you can find something that, well you can’t in a particular area.

In this case, they read my IP location from the town next to Flanders and displayed the town name. (Looked it up to confirm.) For this kind of site though, I doubt they care much about any brand disconnect between perception and reality. For others though, it’s exactly the kind of thing they need to think about.

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Haggar announces fall ‘07 dictator line.

I swear. When I was in 4th grade. I had a coat just like this from Sears.

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Saturday, October 14, 2006

Is Apple the best brand right now?

There’s lists for everything: Best sports team. Best actor. Best agency. Why not one for brands? The ones that are doing it right, doing it better, doing it longer.

For me, that’s Apple. No, they’re not paying me to say that. I’ve paid them over the years. A lot actually. Having used them from their start, I can’t think of another brand that has melded both its core product and marketing efforts the way Apple has, nor one that has been as influential.

Some might argue that great advertising is all you need to make a brand the best. Not for me. If I keep having a bad experience with your product or service, great ads aren’t going to convince me otherwise. They just won’t. (It may help new customers think it’s good, but that’s another topic.)

Everything about Apple’s brand experience has worked throughout the years, from purchase to use to the eventual servicing issues all products encounter. That’s when a brand shows you how good they are, when things aren’t, well, so good.

Like the other day. Went into an Apple store near me to get my refurb shuffle from last year fixed. (All things considered, my Mac stuff has always held up over the years and this seemed to be nothing complicated.) Signed up to see a tech. Crowded store, but ok, wait your turn after signing up. My name shows up on the plasma behind the desk, then they call you.

Tech: “Sup. What’s wrong with it.”

Me: “Loose jack.”

Tech takes the shuffle, looks up the serial number. My name’s already on file.

Tech: “Under warranty, no problem.”

Five minutes later, new shuffle for free and I’m gone. Cool. Done.

Even their phone tech support works, and is understandable. Apple Store people also know their stuff. If they don’t, they found someone who does.

And it’s not just in providing a tool for us creatives either. It’s other things like iTunes where I came across new radio streams and music I wouldn’t have otherwise. Can’t remember Taco Bell ever doing that for me.

Not trying to be all trippy, but this flows from the Mac itself. Simple. Intuitive. Just like the brand experience. Which starts with a great product. Of course, others may have had a nightmare experience with Apple. I could be way off and maybe people might think Coke is the best brand out there.

So what’s yours?

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Captain My Captain.

Everyone’s got a little parody in ’em. New :30 and website for Captain Morgan Rum warns of the danger of bad costumes for Halloween. So Captain Your Halloween with funky music and funky costumes. It also pokes fun at those typically obnoxious, in-your-face spots that run late at night for any Ronco-type slicer-dicer product, not to mention spots that SNL used to nail – when it was funny. (To view the :30, just click on the ‘As seen on TV’ link at the upper right once there.)

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More logos in more places.

Just a little note to say that the blog here recently became part of the Playtone galaxy of stars. Newstex, an aggregator of blog content such as Gawker and the like, has added this here Logo blog to their stable. Note the funky little icon way down below. What does this mean for Logo readers? Well, absolutely nothing. But I do promise to keep delivering the same meaningless rantings on art direction or movie reviews or funky ad finds at 3:00 am that I always have. Just well, um, now to a wider audience.

So here’s a little something on what they do:
Newstex offers Content On Demand, including tailored, real-time news and commentary from thousands of branded newswires, newspapers, magazines, financial and business sources, official government feeds and blogs. Newstex collects full-text digital news and commentary feeds, standardizes the content format, adds stock ticker symbols, PeopleTickers and topical categories, and instantly delivers the result via easy-to-integrate XML or RSS newsfeeds.
For more info, check out the rest here. And now, I return you to your regulary scheduled art director rant.

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