Tuesday, February 28, 2012

It's Beer Time

If you've missed out on the classics of beer advertising, or fancy a quick refresh (see what I did there?!) I suggest taking a visit to Jeremy Parnaby's blog and watch his Top 10 Beer Ads of all time.

Just don't get too thirsty!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Triple Life

Once in a while an ad comes along that defines a market to a big group of it's customers. An ad that connects and identifies those people so perfectly that it stops being advertising and becomes part of their truth.

Sony's classic Double Life ad for Playstation did just that; seeing the real truth of gamers way before Nintendo opened up the market.

So we come to the new ad for the PS Vita. I'll start off by saying I don't dislike it, I think it's a nice ad that will connect with the core gamers Sony is targeting.

One issue though, it feels a bit like the brief said: "Give us Double Life again". So similar was the ad that after 10 seconds on tv I knew it was an ad for the PS Vita.

It would be almost impossible to hit that sweet spot of message, audience and timing again, and anything new is only ever going to feel weaker by comparison. Although I suppose you could argue that even if the ad isn't as strong, tapping into that golden memory of the Playstation generation will do more than any one ad new ever could.

There's sense in it though, hardcore gamers no longer feeling like they are understood, with smartphone gaming taking away the mass-appeal of consoles that arrived with Wii and DS. For the first time in about 6 years, the core gamers need reassurance and need rousing together; and Sony needs them even more to get Vita off the ground. Even if it's not as good as the original, the strategy seems to make sense.

I'm pretty sure if they just repeated Double Life with a PS Vita at the end, it would do the same job though.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Movie Time

If you're not watching Moneyball this weekend then may i suggest a visit to my colleague Patrick's site: What Movie Should I Watch?

It's got a good set of categories and he offers advice on picking films in the twitter feed.

Have a good weekend all!

Thursday, February 16, 2012


I finally got round to seeing Moneyball yesterday, and I think it's a brilliant film to watch if you are into planning, to see how a couple of people changed the way people think about a century old sport by using statistics and data to create a record breaking team from the most undervalued players in the game.

Best thing of all, it's a true story.

Even if you don't like baseball (I don't really either) it's so worth watching.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Talking of Superbowl

This little seen ad is one of the best things Will Ferrell has done in years.

You don't learn much about the brand, but it gives a brilliantly silly tone of voice that feels like it is striving for actual wit against the flurry of cheap gags and overblown spectacle elsewhere in the game.
via The Ad Contrarian

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

I get a roundup...

So the Superbowl brought with it a ton of ads purpose built to grab attention during the mother of all attention grabbing events. All the while the UK carried on as if nothing was happening...

What about the ads?

Well if you only watch one Superbowl ad this year, watch the Chrysler Halftime in America ad from W+K. It's powerful but paced, it continues last year's ad in making Detroit and Chrysler feel truly American and brave and bold like no other car company. An ad full of pathos and meaning in a show of spectacle and hype. Truly brilliant.

Imported from Detroit is still one of the best endlines of the 21st Century too.

Volkswagon continued their Star Wars themed Superbowl ads, but not in the way most people expected. The main ad is nice, if not as good as last year. The additional bit however feels a little forced. As if they were so focused on wedging in Star Wars they sort of forgot to make it work well. By no means a bad ad, but a bit disappointing after last year.

Now if you want to see an example of how you can throw money at celebrities, write a reaonsbly funny idea and still end up with something that drags a bit. Watch this Pepsi ad. Saved by Elton John mugging and Flavor Flav being himself.

Back in the UK the Meerkat rolls on... another ad that keeps this campaign moving in a way that feels interesting and warm. Sure everyone knows the idea inside out, but they are bringing life to the characters and that makes it still work for me.
Sergei continues to be the lovable part of this campaign, maybe even the real star.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

New Model No.15

A number of ad bloggers have talked for a long time about whether there needs to be a new type of agency, and if so what that might be... I've often thought about this, and how you could take advertising forward in some way.

Whilst at my local Waitrose I remembered the story that everyone who works there or at their parent company John Lewis is technically a partial owner of the company, and how that helps inspire great work from people.

I wonder if that model would work for ad agencies...

Every member of staff has a small stake in the agency, this reaps better rewards when things are going well.

In theory you give every team member more motivation to try hard and come up with great ideas. Everyone cares about both the creativity and the effectiveness. People no longer see it as just a place of work, you start to create a feeling of belonging and togetherness that very few agencies have.

It might even help with clients, knowing that every person working on your campaign has a share of the agency means they are likely to try harder and do better work. Or at least that would be a likely perception.

It would be a good way to get neutralise the small minority that works mainly in their own self interest, or those who force their ideas through above anything else.

I wonder...