ING Bank: Virtual Toilet (0)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007 by , under , , ,

This is the post that will have you piss yourself (Yowza! Call me promo man). Belgian agency Emakina created quite the brilliant (and scatologic) concept for ING Direct: The Virtual Toilet. Yes friends, it took a dutch bank to bring you the delight of relieving yourself on the web. The pertaining website,, is a buzz generator whose prophecy is to actually get the consumer to be interested in ING's online banking service.

Great idea, but I'm not sure about how there will be good payoff for the client on this one -- namely, actually getting people to sign into an e-account. It takes a certain amount of time to get to the point, and most of us attention-deficited disorderly might scramble out before the oh-I-get-it coitus point is reached. Nevertheless, the idea is quite well integrated (PayPauline(tm) - lovely), and this'll drop down on the web faster, nevermind.

(Thanks C00lzor!)

Have a virtual number one or two right now.

Links to this post | edit post

The PhotoShelter Collection (0)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007 by , under , ,

A fresh idea to renew the stagnant (and often costly) universe of stock photography. World, meet PhotoShelter -- it's the "first editorialized, rights-managed marketplace that welcomes photographers of all levels of experience to apply, whether hobbyist or pro". Sone sort of an online rep for anyone with a certain degree of talent, wanting to showcase (and potentially sell) stock photography.

It's pretty simple. Registration is free -- submit your best shots (from 3 to 10 pics) for photo editors there to review. If they get chosen, you are displayed for the world to see and to buy. You get 70%, Photoshelter gets 30% (you are paid on sales only). You retain complete artistic integrity and are able to set your own licensing terms.

PhotoShelter is currently in its pre-launch phase, and they're currently running an open casting call for photographers to apply now (and receive 85% transaction proceeds within the first six months on all work submitted before November 5).

(Thanks, Krista!)

Links to this post | edit post

Sony: Music Pieces (0)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007 by , under , , , , ,

Sony recently ported their sucessful Bravia creative platform (remember the balls! THE BALLS!) to their Walkman brand, highlighting a new range of products coming out. Featuring a unified signature ("Music. Like No Other"), their latest spot Music Pieces brings together a "special orchestra" that features large groups of people playing the same instrument, playing each part of a different song to improvise one big piece. Some kind of an orchestral beat box, if you want. This concept symbolises the new Sony Walkman Project, which aims at bringing people online to play one small part of a track, then mixing these parts together to create four music pieces by four composers around the world.

Music Pieces

The concept is a realisation of Fallon London, the same agency who brought you the famous falling balls on the street, the colourful exploding buildings,and most recently The Rabbits (which sorta sucked, mates, sorry -- it's a graphic montage! Come on. Live preparation is more striking, that's what it's about), all for Bravia. Nice.

The Making Of

Links to this post | edit post

(Note: This must-read article is pretty long. Print it out and save it for lunch hour fun. Just my recommendation.)

I got the idea of this article after watching the above ads, by Serviceplan M√ľnche in Germany. They're nicely executed, great art direction, and convey the simple message that Magic Scotch Tape is ultra effective. It'll probably get the creative team something nice at Cannes, or in anyone of 50+ different award shows in our industry.

It's just that I'm thinking that somewhere in Germany, a client for 3M has objectives to attain with his brand/product. His agency-of-record presents a funny, clever approach that says exactly what the product does: it holds things together. O-kay. Said approach is presented to consumer inside a magazine. Consumer goes "Heh. funny", and flips the page.

Total bill (my estimation of course) for this process : from $60,000 and up. And what did 3M get for that money? The same thing that watching a Bugs Bunny cartoon produces: entertainment. I took print as example, but the same thing happens on TV and on radio. A marketing action that doesn't encourage a consumer reaction in response is empty information.

Where could be the return on investment on this marketing action? Doesn't it seem cavernous to say that, nowadays, simple exposure to a Scotch Tape ad will make a consumer feel good about the brand, hence it will be its #1 thought when buying tape
? Nope. Will being a "top-of-mind" brand offer a product tighter guarantee for extra sales? Nope-nope. Will Scotch Tape develop a long lasting, faithful relationship with the consumer by showing him/her funny, clever ads and promotions? Nope-nope-nope. All of this is starting to smell rank. Even the term "consumer" smells rank. "Consumer" sounds like a mindless pig buying away gobs of everything without consideration for anything.

When speaking about someone performing the action of looking for something to buy, we should roll back to the word "shopper". Nowadays, The Shopper is in charge, because the shopper really shops. The Shopper is informed. The Shopper compares. The Shopper talks to shoppers, who talk to Shoppers. The Shopper searches for advice. The Shopper is more product-oriented than brand oriented. The Shopper doesn't want a product that "delivers more", the Shopper wants to find the product that "compares better". The shopper wants to find a product that's just perfect for what he needs, that fits his/her lifestyle or brings novelty to it. And still, The Shopper needs some brand-name love, some flag value. And all this doesn't mean The Shopper buys only products and goods ; he/she can "buy" a cause, "buy" a service. There are so many these days, people shop for these too.

Advertising is a motor of commerce in our economy. There's no denying it. But it's just not done very well anymore, or for the right reasons. Lots of ad agencies are being paid too much for campaigns that don't work, and couldn't work anyway. Not because the message is weak, mind you. More because the media is outdated. Lots of clients are currently throwing millions out the window, because they're afraid to move out of the grasp of traditional media, hiding behind numbers and patterns. Lots of agencies and clients still don't know how to speak with a Shopper.
The most recent newsletter, featured an article from the New York Times (clickable link) : Nike Backs Off Traditional Ads, Gets Closer to Consumers. Wow. And Nike's corporate vice president for global brand and category management doesn't have kind words for conservatism: “We’re not in the business of keeping the media companies alive,” Mr. Edwards says he tells many media executives. “We’re in the business of connecting with consumers.” Blunt, and brilliant. Read the whole article, it's an enlightening moment.

Advertising sometimes still treats people like its the Roman Empire: "Panem et Circenses" - Bread and Circuses (or games). But advertainment is not the way to go. It's not about creating 30 second, hair-raising TV moments anymore. It's not about creating clever print ads, or artsy layouts to satisfy the the eye and masturbate the mind.

Advertising nowadays is about creating conversation. Advertising nowadays is like this hot person you've been eyeing at a post-modern art exhibition, coming up to you suddenly, grabbing your hand and whispering in your ear "Let's blow this popstand. Let's jet and have fun out in the city. I'll present you to my friends". Advertising should be a constant motor for making people act, move, buy, see, talk, discover, play and react.

This doesn't mean that traditional media are dead. This means that they're not the main course anymore. They need to be used as gravy. Accompaniment for new, emerging ways to communicate, to generate conversation with The Shopper. All media need to form a chain that interacts, moving The Shopper around, encouraging him/her to take action - to "buy" into something, figuratively. Out with million-dollar TV-and-Billboard campaigns, in with budgets attributed to creative media that generate word-of-mouth, that generate concrete reaction, that let The Shopper be the vector of mass communication.

Is your advertising doing that right now? Great. It's not? Write me. I know a guy who can help you, hahah.

Links to this post | edit post

Sony Bravia: Rabbits (0)

Friday, October 12, 2007 by , under , ,

A bit late maybe, yet here it is: the latest Sony Bravia ad on AdKrispies, featuring colorful blobs of rabbits and claymation, in the Big Apple.

Links to this post | edit post