Friday, October 27, 2006

From Contagious Magazine:

"A new company named crayon was launched this week by a group of marketing bloggers: Joseph Jaffe, author of the Life After the 30-Second Spot (blog can be found at, co-hosts of the PR podcast For Immediate Release Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson (, and podcasting music pioneer CC Chapman (

The company’s definition eludes traditional marketing categories: in Neville’s words, ‘We’re neither an agency nor a consulting practice as is traditionally defined. What we are is whatever you want or need us to be. I like to think of us as a true mash-up that combines the best in traditional and new thinking about marketing, advertising and PR.’

The company aspires to be a 100% Web 2.0 venture, one that claims to be the world’s first New Marketing company, one whose focus is unambiguously set on the world of blogs, virtual worlds, podcasts, and experimental marketing.

crayon will be both a virtual and a real company: one of crayon’s claims to fame is to be the first company to launch simultaneously in Second Life and the real world (see image facing for a look at their office). ‘Second Life symbolises the thinning line between the real and virtual worlds,’ says Joseph Jaffe, a.k.a. Divo Dapto in his avatar form. ‘With our team located in Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, California and England, Second Life emerged as the perfect way for us to complement our dispersed geographic presence to meet and interact, not only with each other but also with our clients, vendors, and partners.’"

Here's their Second Life Office:

It's a great example of the speed of change and the fact that the possiblities of doing exciting projects that span the real and virtual worlds are not just a flash in the pan.


From the Fallon Planning Blog:

"Reuters reports on the latest in corporate marketing ventures into the virtual world of Second Life. Pontiac is staking their claim, albeit in a slightly unexpected fashion. Their angle in is buying virtual real-estate: 6 virtual islands that they will lease out for "free" to residents in exchange for the promise that those new land-owners will breed a "vibrant car culture within the community".

Dubbed Morotari Island, Pontiac plans to issue out "parcels of land around Motorati Island to Second Life entrepreneurs and artists who wish to create their own projects devoted to car culture." Users who want to get in on the bid can go to the islands Morotari life website (still under construction), to pitch their ideas in hopes of getting a piece of the land on which to lay out their creations.


Compared with other corporations that have simply set up shop within SL to operate as they would in the real-world, GM seems to have put more thought into what a brand may need to do to in order to truly integrate itself into this type of new media/virtual world atmosphere. Allowing residents to incorporate Pontiac as part of their own user-created projects provides for a much different level of interaction than simply seeing a billboard on the street or a sky-scraper on the horizon. Enhancing and facilitating a consumer experience rather than creating and controlling it for them. I like it."

For the rest of the article, which is great, click here.

Bud has launched a new microsite featuring a music streaming service called Pandora which Erika Warren previously commented about here.

Essentially Bud let you listen to music over the internet on their own terms.


Cheers to Michael Iskas for this.

Jim Beam in Bulgaria have used YouTube as a medium to spread the word about their in bar table football promotion. It shows how YouTube videos can be integrated into a communications plan to stretch promotions furter.

See the link below to see their dice tournament.

Dice Tournament 2005

Thanks to Rachel Wicklow for this.

Heineken's new commercial was shot on location during the filming of the the next James Bond film, Casino Royale. A YouTube video takes a behind the scenes look at the approach Strawberry Frog took for the creation of the commercial. Actors are featured. Set designers and assistant directors are interviewed. Strawberry Frog Head Creative Kevin McKeon disucsses the genesis of the project.

My tea arrived the other day from Blends for Friends and it looks, tastes and is amazing!

Thanks to Alex Probyn for providing a quite brilliant personalised tea service. Visit his site and create the perfect customised gift for a friend.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

This is absolutely brilliant.

Maker's Mark have created a microsite allowing you to make you own mini film based on a range of genres. Read the blurb below for more. But make sure you give it a go on the site which is here:

"This is a fully integrated campaign, with a huge interactive component, that includes a special 16-page feature section in the November issue of GQ magazine titled, "25 Greatest Movies - Style with Substance." Maker's Mark will be running a four-page ad unit to create conversation the Maker's Mark way. In addition, the brand will be running lots of banner ads on various movie-related sites that have a high index among our core adult consumer. These sites include:,,,,, and (GQ's site). The campaign will run from October 22 - December 31. The campaign will deliver 31,512,758 impressions over the two-month period.

Furthermore, the link to the site will be sent to all 330,000 Ambassadors via Bill Mail. This will be sent the last week of October, prior to the GQ issue hitting the newsstand. The idea is to give our Ambassadors a sneak peek. We also know that our Ambassadors love to share cool stuff about the brand, so this will certainly be one they'll share. Think about it, if half of our Ambassadors sends it to 5 friends each, that's 825,000 brand messages. We are also doing events in Washington D.C. and Austin featuring one of the top 25 movies. Maker's Mark collectible posters have been created for these events."

A screen shot from my directorial debut and its supporting poster are below. Needless to say the film will probably win an Oscar or two.

Thanks to Gareth Brown for sharing this. I'm sure we'll see some excellent press coverage and very dodgy videos!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Stella has launched a holistic campaign in Toronto based on glorifying a glass of their beer. It's based on placing the glass in the centre of a trap which has been made into a street installation and online game.

From Adverbox.

"The Beer Company has unveiled The Trap at the corner of Bloor & Avenue in Toronto. The complex installation is five meters high and weighs more than two tons. In the middle of The Trap, on a pedestal, sits a tempting chalice of Stella Artois.

It’s only in Toronto until October 25th. After that it’s on its way to other major cities including New York and San Paulo."

Online game called Le Defi
ties the online game into the real world promotion. Users are encouraged to challenge friends to unravel their trap.

No promotion is complete without cool coasters. These ones show the way the promotion evolved.

What strikes me most is the way Stella has used the internet to PR their work. Although this is a local project, based in Toronto, it is getting global exposure via advertising blogs, Flickr pictures and the fact that the content is interesting enough to interact with and share.

Monday, October 23, 2006

From Adverbox:

"This campaign, created by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners for the new Saturn Aura, provides potential customers with a video introduction to the manager of their nearest Saturn retailer. Specific advertisements were developed in 22 stores across six market areas - Buffalo N.Y.; Dallas; Harrisburg, Pa.; Indianapolis; Las Vegas, Nev.; and Raleigh, N.C. - all recorded individually to provide the local information.

The campaign is created through a relationship with Google using their new click-to-play video ads on sites across Google’s network of content partners using geo targeting and Google Earth to create a very personal experience.

The agency made the Google click-to-play medium work for Saturn in a way that would be impossible with most traditional media. The campaign showcases the best of all worlds: the visual engagement of television, the interactive abilities of the web and targeting so sophisticated that it makes possible the things that direct mail, mobile marketing and customer-relationship marketing only dream of. All this in a non-invasive way. Its an opt in world."

To see the interactive Google Video ad click here.

Another nifty aspect of the campaign is the option to chat live with a sales rep over a MSN messenger style interface.

It's a brilliant example of a campaign offering consumers the option of permitting a brand to do something useful for them. It ties the trade in really well to the ATL advertising which seems particularly pertinent to the booze industry. As Paul, who found this site wrote:

"It would be awesome if the CC website could feature new or really cool bars/clubs from around the world and of course have a couple super-hot bartenders show you how they make their favourite CC drink."

Thanks to Paul Crowe for this.

From Advertising Age:

"A-B named the aspiring hip-hop mogul -- aka Shawn Carter -- "co-brand director" for Bud Select today, noting, in a press release, that the rapper "will participate in Budweiser Select planning sessions to provide his unique spin, thoughts and insights on various brand programs."

The release added: "Jay-Z also will be involved in providing direction on other upcoming Budweiser Select television ads, radio spots, print campaigns and several high-profile events."


It's not known whether Jay-Z -- a onetime pitchman for Heineken -- will supplement or supplant A-B's incoming CEO, August Busch IV, as the brand's primary spokesman. It was also unclear whether the rapper intends to drop references to Bud Select into song lyrics, as other hip-hop artists have done with brands such as Courvoisier, Hennessey, Cristal and Don Perignon.

According to San Francisco consulting firm Agenda, which tracks brand mentions in song lyrics for its annual "American Brandstand" survey, no beer brands were mentioned in hip-hop lyrics during 2005, although import brand Corona did land three mentions during 2004."

Thanks to Natasha Baghat from Publicis Dialog New York for this.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

From New York Times:

"The humorous campaign, getting under way this week, transforms the name of Perrier, the French sparkling water, into words that end in “-ier.” The reworked brand names, appearing on bottle labels, postcards, stickers, swizzle sticks, umbrellas and coasters, include “Luckier,” “Sassier,” “Crazier,” “Scarier,” “Prettier” and “Riskier.” (There are no audio elements, and thus no confusion over whether to pronounce it “RISK-ee-ur,” or “risk-ee-AY.”)

Riskier, indeed. The campaign, by agencies that include Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide in New York, breaks the rule that a venerable brand name, with a value built up through decades of marketing spending, is sacrosanct."

For more click here.

Thanks to David Javitch for this.

Absolut launched a guerrilla assault on Edinburgh recently. The operation involved an unbranded onslaught of men in Raspberry outfits, polystyrene raspberries and promotions in bars. It all culminated with a huge party on Princes Street and a reveal of a series of special billboards. Outside the club was a pimped out VIP bus for special Absolut Raspberry fans.

From Marketing Week:

"Absolut, the premium vodka brand, is behind a guerrilla marketing campaign that has flooded Edinburgh with raspberries and images of raspberries this week.

The TBWA/London-created activity is designed to sell Absolut Raspberri as a long drink to enjoy with lemonade. It will unveil outdoor creative urging consumers to "Unleash the Raspberri" and has booked sites across the city, which is where Maxxium is based.

Absolut is also running a mobile sampling unit and will be handing out "privilege" cards, giving consumers admission to exclusive events, bar entry and priority taxi access to support the campaign reveal.

Unbranded activity has included giant raspberries brawling in the streets, boarding buses and drinking in Edinburgh bars.

Hundreds of giant raspberries were then scattered across city parks and witness appeal boards asking members of the public for their help."

This all fits in with previous Absolut Raspberry work which you can see here.

Johnnie Walker has set up a tasting society to guide men through the world of their whisky's and modern life. Dedicated emails are sent out to invite suitable men to attend these sesseions shown above.

Here's a sample of the email:

"From sports metaphors to steak orders (black and blue, of course), you know how to talk to men in their language.

But your talent doesn’t make it up to the bar. His Johnnie Walker® perplexes you. You know it’s a whisky, but isn’t it a Scotch, too? And which label is the best one? Black? Red? Blue? (It may as well be Greek.)

Starting today through this Thursday, you can take the Johnnie Walker Journey at AmericasMart (at 250 Spring Street, building 3, 15th floor) and become an expert in no time.

Johnnie Walker invites you and three friends to experience all five of its Scotch whisky blends — including the legendary Johnnie Walker Blue Label. You’ll get cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while a Johnnie Walker ambassador teaches you the secrets to man-drink vocabulary. And in no time, you’ll know your single malts and pure malts from your blends.

R.S.V.P. for this exclusive event here and enter “Flavor” in the access code. The event is free, but the invitation is nontransferable, and all guests must be over 21.
You’ll leave The Johnnie Walker Journey an expert on the drink — and the art of man-speak.

And the next time you’re at a bar, you’ll do the ordering for him.

Go to to R.S.V.P. for the Johnnie Walker Journey."

On the site is a link to their "Striding Man Society" which gives members access to a range of services such as personalised bottles, e-cards and access to exclusive events.

This is a good way of bringing the upper marques to life and shows that Johnnie Walker is in touch with its consumers.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Brilliant video showing the amazing effects of make up and photoshop. What would we do without it?

It's all intended to put an end to girls feeling like they should change the way they look such as those in this video...

If ever there was an example of a brand that lives off talkability Dove must surely be in the reckoning. The Campaign for Real Beauty seems contrived to many but owing to its roots in an undeniable truth its success is guaranteed. The debate about will continue for years and Dove will always be in the centre of it.

I recently read about Blends for Friends in the BBC's excellent cooking magazine, "Olive". Alex Probyn is a master tea blender who has cut loose from the corporate world and has set up his own Global Microbrand called "Blends for Friends".

Visitors to the site are encouraged to submit a brief pen portrait of their friend they want their tea blended for and Alex will set about creating the perfect of tea for them, which will arrive beautifully packaged, customised and very swiftly. It's an idea that has really caught my imagination.

You can imagine a similar concept working for a small batch whisky... or as a prize for a competition.

Alex writes...

"After years as a master tea taster, blending for one of the world’s leading tea brands, I started to get frustrated with the restricted styles and flavours of tea I could use for large-scale commercial packs of tea. In an attempt to exploit my knowledge and to test my creative skills, I began to blend individual teas and herbal infusions for my friends and family based on their personalities. My creations became world famous (well, family famous at least!) and they asked me to blend for their friends so they could give a personalised gift that really meant something to the recipient."

To visit his site and possibly make an order click here.

For more about Global Microbrands you simply have to visit Gaping Void.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Maker's Mark recently did a promotion at Selfridges where the over dipped bottles are showcased as part of the brand's individuality.

To see some amazing examples of other Maker's Mark images from Flickr see below and click here.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Click above to see the construction of Starwood Hotel's virtual enterprise. It's a great example of what global brands can do and highlights the importance of brand's entering Second Life understanding what consumers are interested in.

Click here for previous posts about it.

BBH has pipped Leo Burnett to the post by launching their agency in Second Life.

Have a look at the video below to see what the space looks like. There has been plenty of chat about the functionality of these spaces. But crucially the idea of bringing creative thinkers together virtually is very powerful - especially for global networks.

To see more stills and description of the space see this article from Adverlab.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Really cool poster site for Heineken.

Thanks to Paul for this.

Watch this before making a viral - don't think it's going to be quite so viral as some of the videos it references though!

Thanks Paul for this.


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