Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Branson Pickle

An important lesson for all brands looking to move into the realms of "digital" and "shared media" (eurgh, horrible words...).

Virgin Money were forced to remove a competition on B3TA which asked creative responses to their current ad positioning. Example results included a mock up of Richard Branson relieving himself over a man dressed as a baby.

Apparently B3TA warned them that the results would be crazy, but they decided to go for it anyway.

Now either this normally media savvy brand has got caught up in bandwagon fever, or was simply after the publicity... answers on a credit card please.

Virgin on the Ridiculous

We Hate Misinformation

Apparently the previous 3 story was NOT true.
3 are rightly happy with the work being done by WCRS.


Thursday, October 26, 2006

We Hate Change

The ever interesting Scamp has mentioned that mobile company 3 is looking to put its £39m account up for pitch.

Its just ridiculous, a new brand director comes in and tries to make a mark by changing the advertising.

The thing here is that WCRS completely turned the brand around from a totally ignored non-entity into a seriously considered service. There ads have been unusual, and set the brand apart from any other mobile provider with a clear and bold brand message.

Why on earth would any sensible brand director change such a successful campaign whilst it is still working?! Its change for changes sake. Its risking the brand for the sake of perceived improvement of new ads.

Its like Honda telling Wieden and Kennedy "We would like to try something else now". Madness.

Its no wonder some agencies are happy to churn out crap, when they produce original, creative, effective work it just gets ignored by a new board member who wants to stamp out his/her authority.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Not Enough Emulsion

Well, the "most anticipated advert of 2006" arrived.
Sony Bravia mkII, but the big debate raging is ...was it worth the wait?

Its a great ad in its own right, its bold, engaging and very visual. It gets across the colour message well. But after that amount of hype and the length of time we were made to wait to see it, its frankly a little disappointing.

Where the first ad was beautiful and implied natural movement, this ad is all man made objects and extravagence.

Where the first ad had wonderfully emulsional (sorry) music, where as this is unsutble and predictable. I dont think Fallon grasped just how much the music made the 'balls' ad work. It was an inspired song choice that probably quadrupled the effect of the ad.

The other problem for me is that much of the paint ends up looking fake because of the colour saturation. It looks like much of the explosions are CGI, even though I dont think any of them are, the less informed will probably think it is.

However. The saving grace of this ad is the final scene. The coloured rain pouring down and creating a rainbow of colours on the ground captures a chunk of that magic the first ad had. Its a beautiful ending to a flawed ad.

I hope the lessons are learnt and the next ad can be beautiful, engaging, and have better music. 7/10 says the school teacher part of me.

Friday, October 20, 2006

My Brain Hurts

My Brain Hurts III - Revenge of the Planners

Northern Planning Summit Number three took place tonight, updates to follow tomorrow. Andrew and James are apparently planning to mock my choice of drink and ideas for reducing table noise in bars...but good intelligent fun was had by all :) Now im off to bed!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Says it all again...

With reference to my earlier posts on Coke Zero vs Pepsi Max, and how Pepsi were laid back in waiting til the Coke fuss had died down before heavily pushing their product again. That was so representative of their attitude and brand image; seamless in its integration.

So guess what, now Pepsi Max is being advertised again, suddenly Coke Zero is back on our screens. It just typifies the difference between the two brands even more so than the quality and message of their ads.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Truth Lies Religion Journalism and Advertising

What a range of topics. But I want to focus on one point: The Truth.

Why is it that advertising is tightly regulated as to what you can and cannot say; you arent allowed to suggest certain things that may even be true for fear of misleading the public.

Yet we have a government that fed us dodgy facts leading to a war, and that's fine.

We have a media reporting about a confidential case involving a Muslim soldier who's family were at risk because he was asked to guard the Israeli embassy. The Sun and other similar papers (as well as disgusting report from Fox News) reported it as if it were some conspiracy to enforce Islam on the UK. No. It was a simple case of someone being excused duty for the protection of their family. (as was done during the Northern Irish conflict with Catholic/Protestant soldiers) Yet the paper reported in its usual way, exchanging any facts that don't suit it's agenda for sensationalist bullshit. Apparently this is also fine.

Why would people be so outraged at a beer ad implying alcohol makes you sexy; and yet sit still and do nothing when the government and the journalistic media seem free to say whatever the hell they like whatever the accuracy. Maybe if they get caught lying they have a two line apology on page 35 three months later.

If only there was the same monitoring of government and journalists as there was of advertising, maybe we'd all be a lot more informed.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Gillllllllllllette Fusion

Ok, so the name really has nothing to do with fusion; just more blades and the nice idea of a single trimmer blade. Still not really a fusion though is it, more a bolting on.

The ad makes out like there is some kind of revolutionary new technology breakthrough available here. Nope, just another blade. Although at least they explain why that is a good development (less irritation).

Terrible ads really. They just try to make the product feel like something else.

Although they do at least get one key thing right, and that is selling the benefits to the consumer. You may think the ad is terrible, but you remember why its 'better than your old razor'.

Its also nice that this ad doesnt feature 700 language overdubbing. Honestly, some healthcare companies would use the same ad in every country in the world if it meant saving money. Overdubbing never ever ever ever ever ever looks good. It just makes the whole brand look cheap, tacky and uncaring.

Im sure I had more of a point here, but its very late and ive bought more items today for my new house than I care to recall...so goodnight!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Don't Take No Guff


Anyway, i've been wondering what to make of the new John Smiths 'barred' campaign. Inititally it's neither as funny nor appealing as the previous campaigns; but starting with the latest ad I think it is starting to show some potential.

The basic premise is a blokes pub where the landlord keeps barring people who watch girly tv / bring in noisy gadgets etc. Initially I found it to be very disappointing, amusing; but it has had none of the mass appeal or style of the Peter Kay (or even Jack Dee) ads. The old pub stereotype feels dated, although I suppose that is part of the idea.

The gadget one however is slightly more adventurous, and is all the better for it. A lot of the ad's humour is in the way the barman appears, and in this ad they got it spot on; making it a surprise that's funny as well. If they make more of this campaign, they should use this one as the model.