Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Google Keeps On Going

Google has started a new direction with their illustrations by using artists work. The art on the homepage seems to be a promotion for the iGoogle artists series where you can customize your iGoogle page to one of the featured artist. It's stunning work. Personally I'm digging the Jeff Koons, Oscar de la Renta, Mads Nørgaard-Copenhagen, and Akira Isogawa themes the most. How about you?

Pizza Hut Serves Tuscani Pasta

Pizza Hut's latest campaign promotes its new Tuscani pastas. For its TV spot, hidden cameras throughout a New York restaurant were used to capture people's reactions to the pasta.

The clip I found on youtube (below) was purportedly posted by one of the actors from the spot. Click through to youtube if you'd like to read his description from the filming.



The spot is pretty believable, but I do find myself wondering if I would honestly make any negative comments if I were invited to a chef-hosted taste test for one of his new creations.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Cutting Through The Creative Clutter

As an agency art director and designer, I get bombarded with direct mail from stock photo sites and paper companies. All of these mailings are always using some latest printing technology or are thick booklets filled with photos—nice and well designed, but their content is overall pretty boring and most go directly into my recycling bin after a 2-second review. Every once in awhile, however, something catches my eye. Most often it's a mailing from Veer, a stock photo and font Web site with a more playful brand than most. Nine times out of 10, if I stop to read a piece or hang up a piece in my office for inspiration (the ultimate honor), it's a piece from Veer. An exception being something like the calendar from Mohawk Paper above.











Veer's latest mailing is probably one of my all time favorites. I'm a little delayed on this since I received it a week or two ago, but didn't have time to look through it until today. It's a little Creative's Secret Handbook filled with silly, but clever copy ranging from challenging riddles that will get you discounts on the website to random entertaining bits like Creative Secret Handshakes. I have to give kudos to Veer for this mailing, it's really one of the most entertaining I've received. I haven't figured out what that key is for yet, but I'm working on it.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Cadillac and Cup Holders

Cadillac has a new campaign running with celebrities in a beautifully art directed campaign. My favorite is the Kate Walsh spot because as Megan posted earlier, we love the 'When you turn your car on...' line. And while I'm a fan of the entire campaign through and through one of the the sister spots, featuring actress Sofia Vergara, bugs me a bit. In the spot Sofia Vergara talks about how research says the number one reason women buy one car over another is the number of cup holders and maybe the researchers need to talk to a different kind of woman. Well, as silly as it sounds, a lack of cup holders is a total deal breaker. Try going on a two week car trip with no cup holders at all and trying to wedge your soda between a suitcase and a backpack. Not fun...

Granted that was in another country where no cars have cup holders (at all), and I'll agree some cars in the US today are overloaded with them, but if I'm looking at putting myself in a $55K luxury car, it had better have a space for my Diet Coke too.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Godzilla Sells $5 Subway Subs

Slate has an article about the jingle behind Subway's recent $5 footlong campaign. If you've watched TV lately, you've definitely heard it. What do you think of the spot?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Truth in Advertising #68

A simple trip to the break room for some brain food (aka chocolate) can turn into a debate on the merits of various candy bars.

Ex. Megan's recent debate between a Twix or a Snickers...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Google Extends its Celebratory Illustrations

I was amused this morning to notice that Google-owned YouTube has adopted the logo-altering antics that Google started years ago. Today is Earth Day.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Monday, April 14, 2008

Wildlife Update II

Last week, the turkeys in our backyard were really active. There seemed to be some territorial conflicts among the males. Does anyone know, is mating season upon us? Or maybe they're just having ego issues again. Typical.

We didn't catch any of the flap attacks on film, but we did get some walking and pecking footage. Christine put together this lovely video for your enjoyment:

video

In related news, turkey poults hatched during March 2008 were up slightly from last year. Thanks to our CD for tipping me off to Turkey Hatchery. My excitement is overwhelming.

Friday, April 11, 2008

A Little Wine and Cheese with Your Friday?

Kudos to our account execs who brought in wine and cheeses for a spontaneous wine and cheese tasting in the office this afternoon! It was very pleasant surprise when I walked downstairs to discuss a photo. Proof that our AE's have fun too.

Medieval Topic, Not Style

AdForum's Top Five Ads this week led me to this eye catching BBC spot. I really enjoyed everything from the imagery to the soundtrack so I thought I'd share. Check it out!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Agency Antics


The other day I lazily turned around at my desk to find 10 photos of this woman I don't know creepily smiling and staring at me through the window of the shared wall behind me. I gave a little yelp of surprise and half jumped out of my chair, much to the amusement of my neighbor on the other side of that window. Granted, she was not the culprit, but she'd been waiting to see how long it would take me to realize they were there. Far too long. Apparently, I am not very aware.

Such is the life in the creative department—sometimes you turn around to find a mango on your bookshelf smiling (yes, smiling) down at you. Other times you may be hit in the head with a wad of paper by another neighbor, shot with a Nerf gun or come in to work to find a crime scene drawn around a toy on your desk.

Even with all the antics, somewhere in the middle of it all, we do get our work done. Promise.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The Power of the Blog

Let me share a random short story with you:

A couple weeks ago, I bought a stick of my usual deodorant at a local retail store. I won't give the brand of the deodorant, or the name of the store from which I purchased it, because it's irrelevant to the story. When I opened the brand-new deodorant to use it a few days later, I found it was all dried out and crumbly. Unusable. And the expiration date listed said 2010.

I wanted to complain, so I filled out a contact form on the company's Web site. I filled in all my information and, at the very end of the form, was curious to find these three questions:

1. Are you a blogger?

2. How often do you participate in online forums/message boards?

3. How likely are you to recommend a brand/product based on your experience?

So is the company trying to gauge how much of a stink (no pun intended) I'm going to raise if they don't satisfy my inquiry to my liking? Don't you find it interesting that they're interested in knowing if I'm a blogger? Does my affirmative blogging status give this company the impression that I have a supreme power of influence (and if so, should I stop letting this go to my head)?

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Too Targeted? Absolut Pulls Ad


On Sunday, Absolut Vodka pulled an ad they had running exclusively in Mexico. Yet, even running just in Mexico, the ad quickly spread across the border to the US and had Americans up in arms. With immigration the issue that it is in the US, Absolut probably should have thought twice about running an ad suggesting half of the US belonging to Mexico would 'hearken to a time which the population of Mexico may feel was more ideal.' Hmm...

Absolut states that the ad was not meant to reflect immigration issues or anti-American sentiment, but how could it not? Especially when they're saying it's meant to bring back thoughts of a better time for Mexico by focusing on an old map that shows a large part of the US as Mexican. I realize that Absolut is a playful company and generally I'm a big fan of their ads, but they had to realize the underlying message in that ad—intended or not. It was just sloppy.

While I'm not particularly offended by this ad, I can definitely see how it might get some Americans upset. To use a sensitive issue to both the US and Mexico to market vodka wasn't Absolut's finest hour. Absolut says the ad wasn't intended for the US market, but in the Internet day and age they were very naive to think it would never be seen here.

R.I.P.

I've been on a bit of a killing spree lately. First, my little office goldfish, Ipsum, and now my little clover. Well, it probably didn't help that I forgot to water the clover since I last posted about it...

Monday, April 7, 2008

Indexed is a Top Blog

Indexed was cited as one of Time.com's top 25 blogs. We love it. We blogged about it. Go and vote for it here.

Truth in Advertising #44

Seemingly "fun" pro bono work has a knack for getting in the way of work for paying clients.

Must be the circle of (agency) life.

Friday, April 4, 2008

How Aware are You?

Our ACD came across this spot yesterday on iClickNation, a blog about the latest viral marketing tactics. It's a PSA from the UK that uses a very clever way to get its message across. So clever, in fact, that the spot's gone viral.

Watch it and you'll see--you'll want to forward it to all your friends, too.


Who would have thought a moonwalking bear could be used to help keep cyclists safe?

Thursday, April 3, 2008

It Keeps Growing


I have yet to kill it, so my little clover is still growing—reminding us that spring should be around the corner soon. It's a little late for St. Patty's, but cute none the less.

Two Commercials, Same Song?

Yesterday I posted about how much I disliked Taco Bell's commercial using Modern English's I Melt With You, so imagine my surprise when I suddenly heard a cover of the same song on TV last night. I turned around to see a much more appealing GMC commercial. Although the cover isn't as good as the original, it's fitting for the commercial and works well.

I wouldn't want to be a creative on either team though. The same song being used in two different commercials in two different industries but running at the same time? Not so good.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Love the Song, Hate the Commercial

I'm sorry, but Taco Bell's latest campaign is just awful. I'm generally not a fan of 99% of Taco Bell ads, but this last one really gets me since not only is it annoying, but it's managed to ruin a fabulous song for me too. Ugh.

So please, if you're going to make bad commercials, at least stay consistent and use bad music too. It'll be awhile before I can listen to this Modern English song again without gagging.