Monday, December 31, 2007
Sunday, December 30, 2007
Refreshing a cliche
Saturday, December 29, 2007
One thing that always frustrates me as a copywriter is clients trying to rewrite conversational copy.
One man who probably doesn't do this is Richard Branson.
Why, I hear you ask.
Just take a look at this gem from his 10 Questions piece for Time magazine:
Q - Has your dyslexia hindered you in the business world?
Strangely, I think my dyslexia has helped. When I launch a new company, I need to understand the advertising. If I can understand it, then I believe anybody can. Virgin speaks in normal language instead of using phrases that nobody understands, like 'financial-service industry'.
Pic courtesy Gaping Void.
Friday, December 28, 2007
Christmas card wrap
The boys over at Bannerblog have compiled a veritable mountain of agency Xmas e-cards.
More than 60 of them in fact.
Some good. Some not so good. And some that are just plain stupid.
Now I hate to be an old bah humbug, but why are so many agencies doing e-cards?
Sure than have a few moments of fun and interactivity. But you can't put them on the mantlepiece.
Nor can you hang them on a string above the mantlepiece.
What's that I hear you say - Not everyone has a mantlepiece.
No argument from me there.
But when your e-card has been played with and forgotten, the 'traditional' card sits proudly on display for the whole of the holiday season.
Check out this year's e-card selection here.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Apparently this ad for the FT has been around for a while. Suffice to say I've not seen it before.
It's from DDB London.
What a great concept. The retouching is absolutely tremendous.
I love the tagline too - We live in Financial Times.
What a pity the creative team didn't put as much effort into the copy as they did the art direction.
"World business. In one place."
Call me fussy, but that's so lifeless. And clumsy.
I know the old adland adage says you should always have a straight headline when you have a clever visual, but the headline in this ad is definitely in need of some love and crafting.
Which kinda makes me think the team behind it were one of those new generation creative teams where they haven't decided who's the writer and who's the art director.
: Click the pic to enlarge :
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Doris Salcedo's 180m long 'crack' at the Tate Modern in London has generated much discussion outside of the cosy confines of the art world.
A couple of canny ad kids spotted an opportunity at the Tate and took it.
An obvious yet very clever plug for Polycell filler.
Cracking idea from Max Bugoyne and James Beswick.
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Tall poppies in New York
Chopping down tall poppies is something of an Australian tradition.
Who'd have thought the Yanks were also into cutting down high profile Aussies.
I'm not talking about Nicole Kidman or Cate Blanchett.
I'm talking about Aussie adman David Droga.
Last week Droga5 was named Creativity magazine's US agency of the year.
The announcement was big news down under, but guess what - the locals ain't happy.
Take a look at some of these choice words from disgruntled locals:
"They haven't produced one national campaign."
"No real breakthrough work for the year."
"Droga5 failed to hit the 'results' mark they tout to the media."
"Building careers on FAKE ads is not only a joke, but should be criminal in creative departments."
Somehow I don't think the about to launch Sydney office will cop anything like that amount of vitriol.
At least in public anyway.
Here's a thought
“Marketing is a tax you pay for being unremarkable.”
Robert Stephens - The Geek Squad
Friday, December 21, 2007
Foresight or hindsight
This quote by Rory Sutherland has popped up on a few advertising blogs recently.
It's a pity it wasn't around in 1999.
Might've helped stop all those consultant types in chinos and chambray shirts from trying to get rich quick off the internet.
As I wrote recently, pre dotbomb style web-biz thinking seems to be on the rise again.
Here's hoping a few of those money hungry entrepreneurs get to see Rory's quote.
Pic via MisEntropy
In Rainbows in store
Whilst standing in the queue at JB HiFi today I saw a huge poster for the new Radiohead album.
It's being released on December 26th.
Given all the hype surrounding its name your own price launch on the web a few months back, I wonder if anyone will actually buy it?
Thursday, December 20, 2007
The domino effect.
We've had Cog from Honda. The recent Guinness spot. And many others I'm sure.
Here's the first domino homepage I've come across.
Click here to take a look.
It's cute. Very cute.
A couple of months ago I wrote about banner ads for my Marketing magazine column.
Yesterday a comment was left on the article by Digital Sponge.
I thought I'd share it with you:
"There's nothing wrong with banners as a format - imagine them as miniature posters, with a bit of extra movement. If clients and agencies took them more seriously, then maybe the standard would go up.
However, at the moment, banners are added to a campaign last, when the client's purse is empty, used as a dumping ground for loads of stray tactical messages and made on such ridiculously low budgets that often the only option is repurposing existing assets.
Give banners some love, and maybe they'll love you back."
I think he's got a point. Don't you?
Click here for a banner that was obviously made with a lot of love.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
You've come a long way baby
The term 'weblog' was coined ten years ago today by Jorn Barger.
A decade on and Technorati is tracking somewhere in the region of 70million blogs.
Although not mine due to some technical glitch that I can't get to the bottom of.
According to Technorati 120,000 new blogs are created every day.
And there are around 17 blog posts every second.
That's pretty impressive for a ten year old.
Happy blogging birthday to bloggers everywhere.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Sick of telemarketers ringing you at inconvenient times?
Take a tip from Jerry Seinfeld.
Monday, December 17, 2007
Up for an exchange?
What did he say?
I've just been reading about the launch of the new Sony magazine in the UK published by Haymarket.
They're obviously moving into the magazine as brand content area that automotive brands do a lot of.
What's killed my interest in the mag is this collection of corporate cliches from the head of marketing at Sony UK:
"Haymarket's approach to Sony's customer magazine delivers a tangible view of the total scope of the brand, evolving consumers' perception of the business from an electronics company to a digital entertainment brand, clearly illustrating Sony's joined-up story of content creation to content enjoyment."
Honestly, who the hell writes and speaks like that?
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Pass the Thesaurus
I can't believe the amount of media coverage given to the announcement that 'w00t' is the word of the year.
Who bloody cares!
Why can't the eggheads who come up with this stuff put their brains to better use?
I know, how 'bout we get them to find replacements for what I consider to be three of the most unattractive yet overused used words of the year:
Anyone got any other suggestions?
Saturday, December 15, 2007
I give you the class of 07
The last of the RMIT advertisiong kids touched by my warped sense of academia graduated yesterday.
As we all know, one of the best bits of graduating is getting to throw the mortar board up in the air at the end of the ceremony.
Not anymore apparently.
Ed Howley took the photo above of the message inside his mortar.
For old folks like me who can't see too well it reads:
"Under no circumstances should this cap be thrown. Personal injury to eyes etc can result."
Ed and Fran saw a great advertising opportunity though.
Stickers with ads for headhunters and recruiters inside the cap.
Nice one kids.
Married a long time ago
Friday, December 14, 2007
Heineken hits the road
I suspect a large amount of product sampling may well have been involved in the creation of a new online idea by Heineken.
The game involves tracking Heineken delivery trucks as they drive around Holland and then guessing where their next delivery will be.
Trucks can be tracked in real time on the site from 9am to 5pm as their journeys generate data for the game.
Inspires sillyness meets geo-tracking by QI.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Google on wheels
Are you smarter than a 5th grader?
If you are, then what are you doing reading this blog?
Rather bizarrely, my 11 year old son's blog was rated Junior High School.
Guess that means he's smarter than his old man.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Low key presence
One of my old Creative Directors used to tell us that he was a Ninja.
Apparently that was how he used to get ideas past clients.
Monday, December 10, 2007
If the shoe fits....
As a kid I always wondered how the shoe horn got its name.
I think I know now.
What I don't know is who comes up with ads like this.
Saturday, December 08, 2007
Bad report card
As the school year draws to a close here in Australia I look forward to my kids bringing home their bad report cards.
Not bad because they get low marks. Bad because the school reporting system is so overly complex it's almost impossible to know how well your child is doing at school.
Still it could be worse. The school report could be sponsored by McDonalds, like they are in Florida.
Friday, December 07, 2007
These are liquidated logos - artworks from an exhibition by an artist called Zev. I found them on the Wooster site.
I'm really not sure what kind of a statement Zev is trying to make to be honest, but I do love these images.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
Wednesday, December 05, 2007
Advertising to bookworms
Well I’ve just discovered an advertising medium that is no longer with us. A medium I’d never even heard of - paperback books.
In the late fifties adman Roy Benjamin started a company to sell advertising to book publishers.
That’s advertising in books, not for books. Weird huh?
Apparently it was a popular medium in its day. And I’m pretty sure old Roy did quite nicely out of it.
But like all ‘good’ things, it eventually came to an end.
Seems authors were not consulted about the ads that were inserted into their books.
They didn’t they receive a cut of the ad revenue either. So they sued.
And slowly but surely in-book advertising died out.
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
What's holding us back?
Melbourne Coffee Morning.
Many have tried. Many have failed.
At least I think they have. I may be wrong.
However following the lead of Mr Russell Davies cities across the globe are holding regular Friday coffee mornings.
Casual get togethers for advertising, design, creative, arty, blogging types.
People like the lovely Lauren.
Having recently returned from London, where she was a coffee morning regular, Lauren is looking to get a Melbourne version up and running.
I’m keen to join her. How about you?
Obviously it’s tough to organise a time and place to suit everyone, so here are a few central options from Lauren.
If you’re up for a brew and a chat, leave your preferred time and place in the comments.
Journal Cafe on Flinders Lane
Section 8 Container Bar/Cafe in Tattersalls Lane
Nick's on Queen St
Come on, there must be something suitable in that list!
Sportsgirl hits the road
Sportsgirl is an icon of pretty much every main street and shopping mall in Australia.
Has been for years.
So what better way to to celebrate the launch of its latest collection of revamped vintage classics from decades gone by than the good old Aussie beach trip.
By Kombi of course. Kombi come pop-up store to be precise.
Bearing the instantly recognisible Sportsgirl stripes, a fleet of Kombis will be making their way from Bondi up to Byron, before heading south to sunny St Kilda.
So great to see a local brand embracing their Aussie heritage.
Almost makes me wish I was a girl so I could go shop there.
Monday, December 03, 2007
Advertising goes BAM!
The end of year issue of Marketing magazine is now on sale.
In this month's issue I picked up on discussion online about how much advertising is too much.
Click here to read the latest Around The Blogosphere.
Whether you agree or disagree with points made in the article, feel free to wade into the debate with a comment on the blog.
Sunday, December 02, 2007
A word from our sponsors
Just when I thought there really couldn't be anywhere left to place an ad, the Boston Globe reports that the town of Littleton has decided to allow advertising on police cars.
The first thing I thought of when I read this was a bidding war between Krispy Kreme and Donut King.
Sadly the police don't want to associate themselves with donuts.
They won't be accepting ads for liquor brands or funeral homes either.
I wonder how soon it will be before a cop pulls over a speeding driver and says "This traffic infringement notice is brought to you by..."
Saturday, December 01, 2007
Tit for tat
End of Evel
I used to love Evel Knievel when I was a kid.
The guy was seemingly invincible.
At least he was back then.
Very sad to hear he's taken his last leap.
As I sat writing this I noticed I had a classic pic of him on my pinboard.
A picture from a long time ago.
With his trademark suit and complete disregard for common sense he was, I suppose, one of the first brands I ever loved.
Although I never even new what a brand was back then.