Thu, 18 Sep 2014 12:12:38 PDT
Still, they keep trying.
Earlier this week, a fun meme spread through Twitter starring a cute ASCII bunny holding a sign. If you were on Twitter that day, you couldn't miss it. If not, a few explainers will bring you up to speed.
Amber Gordon, a creative strategist at Tumblr and former community manager at Denny's, is credited with starting the meme and has since seen it go viral.
@_Cooper |￣￣￣￣￣ ￣| | GURL | | PLEASE | | | | ＿＿＿＿＿_ | (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Amber (@missambear) September 16, 2014
Of course, brands-ever vigilant to real-time trends online nowadays-quickly noticed. And many of them whipped up little corporate bunnies of their own, brandishing pithy little branded signs.
We spoke with Gordon about the phenomenon and what it was like watching big brands attach themselves to a meme in real time. And she also has some advice to the community managers of the big brands, too.
How does it feel to see big brands joining in the fun?
Seeing brands use these types of silly Internet trends is so exciting. Using a native language that's become relevant to your audience is exactly what more brands should be doing, but in an authentic way. Meaning, research it before you post! (knowyourmeme.com is a great resource.)
Will it break the Internet if @Energizer does one?
If Energizer does one, I might cry tears of joy.
Does it feel weird that the bunny signs have now basically become little billboards for corporations?
I love them. Twitter itself is just words, and ASCII art makes them visually interesting. Honestly I think a message has a stronger impact (for me personally) when you can associate an image with it. That's why Tumblr is so great, because you can do all of that there!
Below, check out nine brands that have given the sign bunny meme a shot:
|￣￣￣￣￣￣￣| | ORANGE | | CARROT | | JUICE | | FTW | | ＿＿＿＿＿＿_ | (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Naked Juice (@nakedjuice) September 18, 2014
|￣￣￣￣￣￣￣￣￣￣| | I'm here | | for the cookies! | | ＿＿＿＿＿＿＿＿＿＿| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Oreo Cookie (@Oreo) September 17, 2014
|￣￣￣￣￣ ￣| | DENNY'S | | IS LOVE, | | LIFE | | ＿＿＿＿＿_ | (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Denny's (@DennysDiner) September 16, 2014
#Whoops |￣￣￣￣￣￣￣| | LOST | | MY | | PHONE | | ＿＿＿＿＿___| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- AT&T (@ATT) September 16, 2014
|￣￣￣ ￣￣ | | BUY | | ME | | PIZZA | | ＿＿＿＿＿_| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Pizza Hut (@pizzahut) September 16, 2014
.@totinos |￣￣￣￣￣ ￣| | PIZZA | | AND | | HUMMUS! | |____________| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Tribe Hummus (@TribeHummus) September 16, 2014
|￣￣￣￣￣ ￣| | get off | | the sidewalk | | (please) | | ＿＿＿＿＿_ | (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Citi Bike (@CitibikeNYC) September 18, 2014
|￣￣￣￣ ￣ ￣| | WEAR | | YOUR | | OWN | | SKIN | | ＿＿＿＿ ＿__| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- PETA (@peta) September 18, 2014
@ariavettraino |￣￣￣￣￣ | | k! | | | | | | ＿＿＿＿__| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || / づ- Pumpkin Spice Latte (@TheRealPSL) September 17, 2014
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 11:43:37 PDT
MiniAbe Lincoln has been screaming and whoa-ing his way around Illinois for over a year in ads for the state's tourism office. But he settles down in the latest spot from JWT Chicago-thanks to the love of his life, Mary Todd.
Todd was notoriously melancholy for most of her adult life. And no wonder. It turns out she worked in a bleak cubicle in a nondescript office, pecking away on a keyboard that was way too big for her.
But along comes MiniAbe to whisk MiniMary offer her feet, quite literally, in this amusing spoof of the over-the-top final scene from An Officer and a Gentleman.
The spot is meant to get boomers, Gen X-ers and others to "whisk someone away" this fall and enjoy romantic attractions in Illinois.
Client: Illinois Office of Tourism
Agency: JWT Chicago
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 11:25:14 PDT
The Scottish people have spoken, and the country's powerful whisky industry is raising a quiet toast to the vote against independence.
After voters chose to keep Scotland within the U.K., David Frost, CEO of the Scotch Whisky Association, issued this statement on the group's website: "We welcome the stability that this choice brings and now urge politicians of all parties to work to bring our country together. The Scotch whisky industry is determined to play a leading role in shaping discussions that are fundamental to the future success of our industry and our nation."
Frost and other whisky industry leaders have reason to celebrate. Distillers were worried that a vote of "yes" to independence would bring financial uncertainty to the growing industry. There could be possible barrel taxes, re-negotiated trade agreements and currency uncertainties that might tarnish whisky's popularity and make it more expensive to sip.
Other than oil, whisky accounts for Scotland's greatest export earnings. Bloomberg reports that Scotland's 109 distilleries sold $7 billion worth of whisky abroad last year, with the U.S. high up on the list of whisky consumers.
In fact, according to the Scotch Whisky Association, the U.S. was the world's largest consumer of scotch whisky in 2012, lapping up 127.5 million bottles of the spirits, worth about $1 billion.
Diageo PLC is the world's largest producer of Scotch whisky. It's CEO, Ivan Menezes, told The Wall Street Journal on the eve of the referendum that it was important for Scotland to remain part of the E.U. to take advantage of free trade agreements.
Diageo's brands include J&B, Johnnie Walker, Talisker, Lagavulin, Dalwhinnie and Old Bushmills, which is distilled in Ireland. The Journal says Diageo makes more than $4 billion a year from its Scotch whisky line.
Diageo issued a post-referendum statement: "The future for this sector will remain bright provided there is no further regulation or taxation on the industry. We will continue to work in partnership with both the U.K. and the Scottish governments to ensure the most favorable business environment possible, both for Diageo and for the future growth and success of Scotch whisky as an industry."
If you read between the lines, the statement is a vote for a globalized whisky brand protection that would have been complicated by the business uncertainties of Scottish independence.
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 10:19:28 PDT
While many people are struggling to get their hands on an iPhone 6, it seems comedian Joan Rivers was able to posthumously acquire one of the desired devices. The funny woman virtually returned from the dead to gush about the smartphone on her Facebook page today.
According to TMZ, the message read: "This badass is being replaced by an iPhone 6 (not the fat one.) I got this one in 2010, and after 4 years, my only complaint is that apps are now designed for bigger screens, and the battery is getting tired. Never had a case for it, since it was most beautiful on its own. Great achievement in design. Great product. #apple #iPhone #tech."
It appears the snafu occurred because Rivers had negotiated a deal to plug Apple's latest smartphone-but someone on her team forgot to delete the scheduled post after she passed away. It has since been removed.
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 10:02:50 PDT
Few brands can cause socialites-or at least, those who would like to look high society-to brawl. But Lilly Pulitzer is one of them.
The fashion brand's annual warehouse sale is such an event that the industry blog Racked offered a list of tips for diehard fans looking to nab the apparel at discounted prices.
But maybe the brand's history shows why fans would fight for the resort chic wears. Jackie Kennedy put on one of its dresses in 1962-made from kitchen curtain material, no less-and people went bonkers. The brand took off from there, and shift dresses made of bright material became known as "Lillys."
Pulitzer was the daughter of a New York society family (her maiden name was McKim). But it wasn't until she moved to Palm Beach, Fla., with her husband that she began designing the dresses. She passed away last year at age 81. But the brand remains popular thanks to her original and distinct designs.
Social Media Profile
(as of 9/18/14)
Facebook Likes: 863,432
Twitter Followers: 151,703
Instagram Followers: 328,087
Pinterest Followers: 117,373
The brand has found a niche audience on social platforms like Instagram and Pinterest, garnering an average of 8,000 likes and 250 pins, respectively, for each post. In fact, Stylophane recently named the Lilly Pulitzer as one of the top five most engaged fashion brands on Instagram.
The brand shies away from traditional advertising-the last video uploaded to the brand's Youtube page, showing how one of its prints was made, was over a year ago. While its does place ads in regional magazines, the brands invest heavily in its social platforms, particularly Instagram.
The CMO's Philosophy
"Our marketing is simple-all we want to do is build a connection with our consumer," says Jane Schoenborn, vp of creative communications. "Sounds basic right? At Lilly our consumer has always been a dear friend. Lilly (the woman) was incredibly inclusive, and we market the way she threw parties ... everyone is invited, you may be expected to lend a hand, and expect the unexpected. Our brand provides the answer to a very specific need (resort lifestyle dressing) and by delivering excellent product and keeping our consumer close, we win over consumers for life. Welcome to the party."
• Following her marriage to Peter Pulitzer when she was 21, Lilly moved from New York City to Palm Beach. It was there that she started a juice stand (her husband had citrus groves) and to disguise the inevitable juice stains, she had what would become known as a "Lilly" made.
• Though the brand is featured in retailers like Nordstrom's and Saks Fifth Avenue, there are just 26 corporate stores.
• The brand flourished from 1960 to 1984. It became popular again in '90s after Sugartown Worldwide acquired the brand.
• Yes, Lilly was part of that Pulitzer family. Her husband Peter's grandfather was responsible for establishing the award.
-Brand of the Day is a new daily feature on Adweek.com. To submit a brand for consideration, contact Kristina.Monllos@adweek.com.
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 09:01:23 PDT
Oh man, grumpy dad who's working weird hours in this new Cheerios ad from Saatchi & Saatchi. Don't get mad at your kid. Take a lesson from Peanut Butter Cheerios dad, and be cool. Hang out for a minute and laugh with Junior. It'll be nice before you head off for however many grueling hours of whatever it is you do.
Judging by your rugged appearance and attire, and that clocking in at midnight is even an option, it's presumably something blue-collar. Dock worker? Warehouse worker? Auto worker? You are in the Cheerios demo. You should be eating lots of Cheerios at 11 p.m.
Sure, Cheerios might be mimicking your frustrating but also beautiful existence right back at you just to sell more breakfast cereal, because times aren't just tough for salt-of-the-earth people with families to support, they're tough for cereal brands, too. Nobody wants to eat cereal with their kids at any time of day these days.
So, also don't get mad at Cheerios, because making ads that use children to pander to your heartstrings is what they do. Indeed, sometimes manipulating your love for sentimental family moments really does work well … so Cheerios is probably going to keep trying.
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 08:53:07 PDT
Unless you're living under a rock, you know the iPhone 6 hits stores today. And if you're one of the souls brave enough to endure insane lines to get your new bleeding-edge item-congratulations on your achievement!
Since Australians literally live in the future, they were the first to get a crack at Apple's new device, which has amazing new features like a free U2 album no one wants.
Well, as Australian Jack Cooksey was being interviewed by a Perth television station to get a first look at his new prized possession, well-take a look below at the dramatic conclusion.
Via Daily Dot.
And here it is from another angle:
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 07:18:04 PDT
By celebrating its Irish roots, Guinness subtly sails into the mystic with "In Pursuit of More," a campaign that bows with this 90-second spot from Philadelphia agency Quaker City Mercantile.
St. James's Gate, the brand's 255-year-old Dublin brewery, is the inspiration for a meditation on its heritage. We learn something of its history, meet current employees and get a feel for the brewing process. "We're only 255 years into a 9,000-year lease," Irish actor Cillian Murphy says in a lilting, raspy voiceover. "We have a lot more beer to make."
In fact, the lease is no longer valid, as Guinness purchased its Dublin site long ago. Even so, that historical detail fits the overall thrust of this broadcast and online initiative. Developed mainly for the U.K. and Ireland, with more short films to follow, the work creates a timeless, almost mythical aura around the brand.
"We felt it was time to open the gates and let the world see the people who make our beer special," says Guinness marketing director Stephen O'Kelly. Fair enough. But Philip Montgomery's smooth direction, with visuals that are muted, gauzy, and at times slightly over-bright, give the piece an ethereal, quasi-spiritual vibe.
This vibe resonates even during some of the clip's most commonplace scenes. For example, the spot opens with a guy cycling to work at the brewery. As a moody piano piece by Alain Francois Bernard plays in the background, he turns down a narrow cobblestone street-it resembles a tunnel-and rides up to St. James's Gate. The huge doors are dark and imposing, like freshly pulled pints of Guinness stout. As he slips inside, it's no stretch to imagine he's entered a holy place where past, present and future blend into a heady brew.
What could be more on brand for a company emphasizing its ties to Ireland, the land of legends and strong beliefs, and particularly for Guinness, which has a devout cult following worldwide?
Fri, 19 Sep 2014 04:44:36 PDT
Three celebrity ads anchor this week's collection of best spots, with Samsung, TBS and Gatorade all calling on famous talent to get views. And Gatorade, in particular, really scored-with its Derek Jeter tribute becoming the week's big talker.
Elsewhere, Pampers Japan crafted a heartfelt spot that surprised moms, and GoDaddy unveiled its first (quite strange) work from a new agency.
See all the spots below, and yell at us if we're left off anything great.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 21:07:18 PDT
The Alibaba Group is having its initial public offering today. There is no question the "Amazon of the East" is set to make several people wealthy, including co-founders Jack Ma and Joseph Tsai (Alibaba is estimated to raise over $20 billion in its IPO).
Still, we wondered: Does anyone really know what Alibaba is? So we took to the streets of Manhattan to find out if ordinary New Yorkers have any idea.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 17:16:59 PDT
Should today's vote lead to an independent Scotland, the country will need a fearless leader to represent it on the world stage. Obviously, Groundskeeper Willie of The Simpsons is that man. It's the latest bit of genius from the Fox show, and expect a lot more of it very soon.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 14:43:40 PDT
The Quaker Oats guy is getting a new look for the first time since 1877. The makeover is courtesy of a new partnership between America's Milk Companies and Quaker Oats, which will feature Larry, the Quaker Oats guy sporting a milk mustache.
The new push encourages oatmeal lovers to swap their water for milk when cooking their oats and enjoy it alongside a cold glass of milk for an added serving of protein in the morning.
Larry is the latest in a long line of stars, celebrities, athletes and musical types who have sported the iconic milk mustache in ads and campaigns for the milk industry through the years. The new look will appear on canisters of Quaker Oats sold in grocery stores, marking the first time the mustache has made it to market shelves.
The canisters will not only feature the milk mustache, but will also include Blippar technology aided messaging that allows consumers to scan the package and connect with special content as well as recipes in addition being able to share their own milk mustached Selfies.
It seems that Larry's mustache has also landed him in People Magazine's "Best Dressed" issue and the old guy will also be seen in TV and online ads in addition to Quaker and Milk Life social media properties.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 13:31:32 PDT
OK, you world-wise travel people. Ever been to Wotifia? Never heard of it? It's right next to Freedonia, that fake country invented by the Marx Brothers in Duck Soup.
Wotifia is actually the brainchild of ad agency M&C Saatchi in Sydney, which borrowed a page from the Marx Brothers-and early Terry Gilliam's work for Monty Python-to help rejuvenate the image of Australia's largest online travel site, Wotif.com.
The agency created a short buddy movie that features two clueless looking dudes literally falling into surreal travel adventures in an animated world called-what else?-Wotifia.
The adventures are set to a ridiculous music track with ridiculous lyrics that sound like a mashup of Barry Manilow and Lionel Richie after you've taken a whopping dose of hallucinogens.
The boys encounter dancing llamas in South America, a soil-your-swimshorts experience with sharks, a bone-breaking ski trip to the Alps, a run-in with a 100-foot bikini clad beauty who emerges from the sea like Godzilla, and a lazy Susan full of Chinese food like it's a merry-go-round.
Michael Betteridge, Wotif's general manager of marketing, says the campaign, which launched last month, "is designed to reach the 'next generation' of travelers and introduce them to our brand, our range of travel products and experiences, and to our irreverent and fun approach to travel."
Irreverence is certainly the theme. Credits below.
Agency: M&C Saatchi, Sydney
Executive Creative Director: Ben Welsh
Creative Directors/Art Directors/Writers: Gary Dawson, Shane Gibson, Andy Flemming
Digital Art Director: Glenn Christensen
Account Management: Karlee Weatherstone, Emmanuel Spiropoulos, Kristy Schwind, Charlotte Rijkenberg, Marcella Nigro
Planning Director: Mark Vadgama
Agency Producers: Jules Jackson, Sue Hind
Production Company: World Wide Mind
Director: Rocky Morton
Executive Producers: Will Alexander, Ben Nott
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 09:26:01 PDT
Young & Rubicam has reached into a leading digital shop to fill a top strategic role in New York.
Dick de Lange, a group strategy director at R/GA who most recently worked on Samsung, is now chief strategy officer of the New York office of Y&R. De Lange, who also has worked at JWT, Saatchi & Saatchi and DDB, fills a void left by the July exit of Hope Cowan, who was based in New York and led strategy for North America. Cowan had been at the agency for two years.
The new top planner has never run a department before, though he led groups at both R/GA and JWT. At JWT, he was part of a team behind the "Ridiculously long lasting" campaign for Cadbury's Stride Gum, and when he joined R/GA in 2011, he focused primarily on Nike. His other brand experience ranges from Converse and State Farm to Lexus and Sony.
At Y&R, de Lange becomes part of a leadership team that includes president Jim Radosevic and chief creative officer Jim Elliott. The agency's top accounts include Dell, Xerox and Campbell's Soup.
In making the hire, Radosevic cited de Lange's cross-channel experience, energy and problem-solving abilities. Radosevic said he also sees him as a kindred spirit, as both have worked at digital shops in the past. (Radosevic was a managing director and creative director at WPP Group's VML before joining sister shop Y&R in 2011.)
As chief strategy officer, de Lange will lead a department of 20 and be a key player in business development-an aspect of the job that Radosevic described as "incredibly critical." As for his goals in his first year, de Lange also mentioned growth.
"We need to build and grow this place, add new and exciting work to it," he said.
As for his leadership approach, de Lange likes to "inspire people by having them scare me every day by surrounding myself with young minds and showing, as a more senior guy, that I need to learn every single day."
He also stressed the importance of "attacking every single assignment in a new way and not replicating anything we've ever done before."
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 08:54:53 PDT
Electronic cigarettes may be relatively young product category, but that doesn't mean various brands aren't battling for top spot of a $2 billion market.
Beyond the litany of debates over the products-the laws, regulations, whether or not they're safe, even disposable vs. refillable products-lies a customer base vying for devices that deliver the sensation of smoking without as much of the harm.
The current king, by sales, is Blu, a band founded in 2009 by Jason Healy. The disposable e-cigarettes come in three flavors: classic tobacco, magnificent menthol, and cherry crush. Blu also has rechargeable kits, with pre-filled flavor cartridges that come in the disposable flavors as well as java jolt, vivid vanilla, pina colada and peach schnapps. They are sold in over 160,000 locations nationwide, and ads for the brand run on Comedy Central and Spike TV.
The brand isn't all that prolific on social channels, but maybe it doesn't have to be. Celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Julia Louis-Dreyfus (even if that was for a sketch) have brought the spotlight to e-cigarettes.
Much of the brand's advertising focuses on all the thing a Blu smoker can do (actually, all the things actor/spokesman Stephen Dorff can do)-whether it's hiking, biking, racecar driving, smoking inside, you get the picture. Ending with the tagline, "Take back your freedom," the e-cigarette brand leans heavily on on the dichotomy of what smokers can do with e-cigarettes versus what they can't do with regular cigarettes.
Healy puts it bluntly, telling Politico: "In order to defeat tobacco and cigarettes, we have to appeal to smokers."
The CMO's Philosophy
"We strive to be real, passionate and responsible with every marketing campaign blu eCigs produces, whether it's PR related or the latest advertisement," says vp of marketing Matt Coapman. "Our mission is to deliver satisfaction to all adult smokers-and the messages we have created over the past five years have certainly fused our consumers' input with our overarching goal to offer smokers an innovative alternative that best suits their needs."
• Reynolds American recently acquired Blu's parent company Lorillard (for a cool $25 billion) but it will not be keeping Blu under its corporate umbrella. Instead, Reynolds sold Blu to the U.K.'s Imperial Tobacco in an effort to boost Vuse, its own e-cigarette brand.
• Stephen Dorff serves as the brand's spokesman, alhough Jenny McCarthy has also appeared in ads for the brand.
• Dorff and Healy have posted question and answer sessions on Blu's Youtube page.
• Blu launched a new product this week called Blu Plus.
-Brand of the Day is a new daily feature on Adweek.com. To submit a brand for consideration, contact Kristina.Monllos@adweek.com.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 08:10:03 PDT
In advance of Scots going to the polls today to vote on the referendum to withdraw from the United Kingdom, WPP Group CEO Martin Sorrell has weighed in on the consequences of independence.
Speaking to Sky News' Dermot Murnaghan earlier this week, Sorrell, who has warned about the impact of Scottish independence previously, voiced his concerns that a "yes" vote would really be a response to a political argument, not an economic one.
Echoing other critics of Scottish independence, the holding company chief spoke of economic consequences, including the prospect of higher food prices and interest rates, mortgages becoming more difficult to attain and financial employees migrating to England. An independent Scotland risks become a distant player, falling far behind more powerful rivals in England, he said.
"How will (an independent) Scotland try and position itself? They will try and position themselves as a sort of Singapore or a Uruguay but when you look at the basics, when you look at the basics in Singapore or in Uruguay, their geographical position, their historical position, Scotland will be an outlier," Sorrell said.
"Glasgow, Edinburgh will be cities that will be outliers, not at front and center in global business thinking. London actually, ironically, will become even more competitive to Edinburgh or Glasgow as a center for global corporations and I don't think in that competitive environment that a city state of Scotland will win out in competing for business. Somebody will have to pay for this and the tax yields will go down, they won't go up. Businesses will be less profitable in Scotland as a result."
As for WPP's own business prospects, should a vote for independence succeed, the chief executive said it would impact the company's business throughout the U.K., not just in Scotland.
"The implications for WPP actually are not good-not just for Scotland but for the U.K. as a whole," Sorrell said. "The U.K. accounts for about 10 percent of our revenues and our profits on a global basis. As I look at WPP in the future, what we will do is spend more investment money outside the U.K. in trying to develop our business beyond the U.K. borders with increasing intensity."
Sorrell added that if Scotland sucedes, "geographically the U.K. will be diminished and the pity about this is that we are turning in and on ourselves, not growing the whole of the U.K."
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 08:05:26 PDT
You may know him as the seven-time Mr. Olympia winner from when you were a gawky half-pint. Or the Hollywood action hero you wanted to be. Or you could've been one of the more than 38 million U.S. citizens he governated for a decade.
In any case, everyone knows Arnold Schwarzenegger. Which has made him perfect for advertising around the world.
Schwarzenegger, now 67, is clearly no stranger to the camera. And he's appeared in countless peculiar ads-many of which you may not have seen, because like other smart A-Listers, he took his commercial talents overseas. And he seemed to hawk any brand that would pay.
In the video above, we've highlighted some of our favorite Arnie ads. Enjoy!
Video edit: Mac Smullen
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 08:00:09 PDT
One of the most closely watched IPOs in recent memory debuts on the New York Stock Exchange this Friday as the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba goes public.
Jack Ma, the company's founder and chairman, has been making the rounds in the U.S. this past week to drum up investor enthusiasm about the stock offering, which will start trading at around $68 a share, reports Reuters. The IPO is expected to raise at least $22 billion to $25 billion, making it one of the highest-valued IPOs in NYSE history, according to The Wall Street Journal.
The Alibaba offering signals a shift in competition for highly-capitalized internet companies. When Alibaba debuts, four of the top 10 internet companies in the world-calculated by stock-market valuation-will be Asian, with a combined value of $426 billion, reports the Journal. (The other three Asian companies are Tencent Holdings Ltd., Baidu Inc. and JD.com, according to the Journal.) By contrast, Google, Facebook, Amazon and eBay weigh in with a combined market value of $797 billion.
Ma has promised that his company, based in the eastern city of Hangzhou, will use the IPO funds to launch and market versions of the site in the U.S. and Europe. In June, it launched a U.S. beta version called 11 Main, which is open for business.
The site operates on an "invitation only" basis for shops and consumers. Customers need to sign up to receive an email invitation, and retailers have to register. The exclusive strategy belies the company's appeal, which is courting smaller retailers who carry a spectrum of brands with bargain and luxury prices.
The U.S. manager of 11 Main, Mike Effie, told Women's Wear Daily the site is focusing on attracting boutique and independent brands. He added that the company is building an eclectic Main Street shopping experience, where consumers vistually wander around "a luxury shop sitting near a vintage shop [that's] near a collectibles shop."
An example of an 11 Main shop is Northern California fashion retailer Alys Grace, which carries Joie, Diane von Furstenberg, and Vince. In all, 11 Main will feature 500,000 products to choose from in categories that include jewelry, tech, sporting goods, toys and entertainment.
Alibaba is battling concerns about vendors that sell gray-market goods. To that end, it's been cleaning house on its Chinese sites to attract high-quality brands that are reluctant to join a marketplace of 70,000 vendors, many of them with knock-offs. The company reportedly dumped 50 vendors who were not authorized to sell Burberry, hoping to encourage the British luxury fashion house to join.
And the name of the company? It's based on the 18th century Arabian Nights' tale Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, in which a poor woodcutter enters a thieves' den of treasures with the phrase, "Open, sesame." Maybe that isn't so farfetched. Ma and Wall Street investors are betting that American shoppers open their wallets to Ma's online empire.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 07:53:15 PDT
Martin Stirling already directed one powerful PSA about Syria-Save the Children's incredible spot from last spring, which imagined if the crisis were taking place in London. But the Unit 9 director wasn't finished.
With the United Nations General Assembly meeting next week, the world's leading NGOs-Oxfam, Save the Children, Care, Amnesty and a hundred more-have banded together for a new PSA, directed by Stirling, that attempts to capture the horrors being endured by ordinary Syrians on a daily basis.
See the spot here:
The stylistic choice of using reverse footage almost becomes a moral choice here-it's the hook that makes the piece haunting, and shareable, and thus capable of making a difference. The film is the centerpiece in the NGOs' #WithSyria campaign, which drives viewers to a petition asking the UN Security Council to take next steps to protect civilians.
ISIS is dominating the headlines today, but the plight of ordinary Syrians remains critical. The death toll in Syria is now close to 200,000. Most of the civilian deaths are caused by "barrel bombs"-oil drums filled with explosives, chemical weapons and rusty nails, dropped from Syrian regime helicopters into populated areas. The same areas are often hit twice in quick succession in order to kill first responders.
"I really had no choice about whether or not to make this film," Stirling says in a statement. "I was swamped by a couple of projects, and I tried my best to walk away but found it impossible. Whenever I thought about not making this film I was haunted by the images and stories I had come across in preparation for the 'Most Shocking Second A Day Video' earlier in the year.
"This film felt like an appropriate follow-up to that first one-it was creatively and stylistically different in a way which would hopefully capture the attention of a wide audience and the hearts of influential policy makers."
Production Company: Unit 9 Films
Director/Writer: Martin Stirling
Producer/Exec Producer: Michelle Craig
DOP: Carl Burke
Focus Puller: Jonny Franklin
Researcher: Harry Starkey Midha
Production Partner: Atlantik Films
Editor: Alex Burt
Grade: Un1t Post
Colorist: Simon Astbury
Sound Design: Jon Clarke
Post-Sound Producer: Rebecca Bell
VFX + Post: Cherry Cherry
VFX Supervisors: Nico Cotta, Tony Landais
Compositors: Ergin Ishakoglu, James Cornwell, Doruk Saglam, Utku Ertin, Mertcan Ag, Nico Cotta, Otis Guinness-Walker
CG Artists: Bogi Gulacsi, Ceyhan Kapusuz, Zeynep Onder, Tony Landais
Digital Matte Painters: Stuart Tozer, Richard Tilbury
Executive Producer: Chris Allen
Line Producer: Sezen Akpolat
Music: 'Youth' Daughter
With Thanks to Matt Brown and Steph Hamill
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 07:50:37 PDT
Citroen puts on the dog once again in this commercial with an anthropomorphized mutt who charmingly works out the muscle kinks and stiffness of a long drive when its owner pulls in to a desert gas station.
The spot, from Les Gaulois in Paris, promotes Citroen's BLUEDi engine, which, according to the title card, allows drivers to "stop less often at the pump." Some versions of the ad substitute the line, "Next stop is in 1,520 km." That's a whole lot of miles in dog years.
Directed by Control's Joachim Back, the lonely, sun-baked locations succeed at suggesting a winding, hours-long journey where the stops are few and far between. So does the use of "Sixteen Tons" on the soundtrack, which will now be rumbling through my head for the duration of my lifespan.
Your enjoyment of the spot-a companion to Citroen's canine love story (I mean, woof story) from last year-will probably hinge on your attitude about ads where special effects are used to make animals and babies act like adult human beings.
In my view, it's no stretch to say this puppy's a winner.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 07:37:42 PDT
Eating low carb, minimally processed foods may be the diet fad du jour, but clean eating doesn't stand a chance against the likes of Eggo's new blueberry cobbler waffle variety, according to a ranking of the top new grocery products in August, released today.
The waffles are in good carb company. The top three items in uSamp's Instant.ly Shelf Score index-which purports to quickly and accurately rate purchase intent for a wide array of CPG brands and products recently released to supermarket shelves in limited runs-are decidedly not on the Paleo diet plan.
"As the seasons begin changing, we're noticing a high receptivity toward more homestyle, comfort food offerings like blueberry cobbler Eggo waffles," said uSamp CEO Alan Gould. "Interestingly, in addition to being comfort foods, two of the top three products this month also require some degree of preparation by the consumer."
DiGiorno may have made a huge social media mistake when it embarrassingly inserted itself into a powerful social conversation about domestic violence earlier this month, but will that negativity override people's desire to design their own pizzas? The brand's new Design a Pizza product came in at No. 3 in the Shelf Score, following behind the Eggo waffles and a new artisanal bread mix from Pillsbury, which tied for No. 1.
Trendy ingredients like bacon, Omega-3 fatty acids and olive oil make appearances in the rundown of popular new products, but Gould cautions against jumping blindly on the bandwagon. "With items like Bacon and Waffle Lunchables and Olive Oil Veggie Popchips, producers are becoming more creative in trying to capitalize on two opposite food trends: the bacon craze and healthy vegetable-based snacks," he said. "Consumers, on the other hand, remain discerning about how these trending flavors should manifest in their everyday lives, and that is reflected in the purchase intent scores."
These purchase intent scores are measured through a platform that gathers in-context insights from consumers about new products as soon as they hit the shelves. The index also considers innovation and "category disruption from small or unknown brands."
Reps from uSamp and Instant.ly have said that their concept testing is faster than other methods, and at about a third of the cost.
The Shelf Score comes out monthly across different categories.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 05:03:41 PDT
Gatorade hits it out of the park with this epic 90-second salute to New York Yankees superstar Derek Jeter, breaking today.
If the retiring Jeter is looking for a new career, he can get a job on Madison Avenue, since he wrote some of the copy here and even suggested the Frank Sinatra song that serves as soundtrack for the ad, by TBWA\Chiat\Day in Los Angeles.
Molly Carter, Gatorade's senior director of consumer engagement, gave Adweek a preview of the commercial, which shows Jeter surprising fans outside Yankee Stadium to the tune of Sinatra's "My Way."
After penning an open letter announcing his retirement this spring, the Yankees captain himself suggested a spot showing him thanking Yankee fans, said Carter. When Gatorade asked the 40-year-old (the brand's third-longest-serving endorser after Michael Jordan and Mia Hamm) which song best summed up his career, he picked "My Way."
"It was a true collaboration between Derek and Gatorade," Carter said.
Gatorade, the official sports drink of Major League Baseball since 1990, roped off a few blocks before a home game in the Bronx this July and "just kind of let Jeter go," said Carter. The shock and surprise on fans' faces when their idol walks into Stan's Sports Bar, or autographs baseballs, is genuine, she said.
The 90-second "My Way" spot breaks online Thursday, and will air on TV for the first time Saturday on the YES Network and Fox.
Gatorade will follow that with a full-page print ad (see below), which Carter said was written by Jeter himself, in the New York Daily News and Sports Illustrated on Sept. 28-29. Addressed to "New York," the ad shows Jeter tipping his cap to fans.
"From my first at bat until my final out, you helped make me who I am," he writes. (Jeter's final game in pinstripes is Sept. 28 at Boston, unless the Yankees somehow make the playoffs-which is highly unlikely.)
Besides the ad campaign, Gatorade will outfit the Yankees dugout with customized cups, coolers and towels featuring Jeter's No. 2 in place of the Gatorade "G" during a game on Sept. 22.
Jeter was also honored by Nike's Jordan Brand in a 90-second spot from Wieden + Kennedy in July.
Agency: TBWA\Chiat\Day, Los Angeles
Executive Creative Director: Brent Anderson
Creative Director: Renato Fernandez
Senior Copywriter: Nick Ciffone
Senior Art Director: Dave Estrada
Executive Producer: Sarah Patterson
Assistant Producer: Garrison Askew
Director: Henry-Alex Rubin
Production Company: Smuggler
Executive Producers: Patrick Milling Smith, Brian Carmody, Lisa Rich, Lisa Tauscher
Producer: Drew Santarsiero
Editorial: Rock Paper Scissors
Editor: Damion Clayton
Executive Producers: Dave Sellars, Angela Dorian
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 04:52:12 PDT
If watching Drew Brees talk to a hyper-awkward robot for six minutes is your kind of thing, then Old Spice has an ad for you.
The New Orleans Saints quarterback keeps his cool during "4th and Touchdown," a fictional sports news show hosted by Old Spice's new mascot, who in the recent past has been doing well with human women, despite his total lack of social skills.
Absent that context, the moral now seems to be that viewers should act like Drew Brees, not like a hyper-awkward robot, which is pretty sound advice regardless. Even if the robot claims to have great hair thanks to Old Spice, he's not the most reliable narrator.
The pair's antics range from fairly grating to pretty amusing, with some sharp writing and and a lot of waiting between the high points (see: roughly 4:15, Brees pretending to be a brass instrument). In a way, the finale rewards your patience, though may not be quite enough to compensate (perhaps a shorter edit would be in order?).
Anyway, the whole thing deserves credit for trying to send up the tradition of senseless televised sports coverage, even if the pass doesn't quite connect. That robot does a solid impression of a smug anchor.
And if you do like it, stay tuned for more. The brand is promising appearances from Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles, Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green and Seattle Seahawks defensive back Earl Thomas.
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 03:16:02 PDT
With ice bucket challenge videos from creative agencies slowing to a trickle on YouTube, here's a look back at eight of the most memorable ones-a truly global mix that includes shops in Ireland, Germany, Romania, Japan and, of course, the U.S.
Some feature large groups, while others have just single face. Among the standouts are clips that involve staff members personally affected by ALS, the neurodegenerative disease that all ice bucket videos have raised more than $113 million to fight.
Case in point: a 46-second clip from the Carroll brothers of Schenectady, N.Y., including TBWA Group chairman Tom Carroll, whose dad, Tom, died of ALS in 1972, and a shorter clip from McCann Erickson Japan planning director Hiro Fujita, who has ALS himself. Each is among the videos that we're spotlighting here in alphabetical order.
Grey in Germany
Havas Worldwide in the U.S.
McCann Erickson's Hiro Fujita in Japan
Merkley + Partners in the U.S.
Publicis in Ireland
RPA's Jason Sperling in the U.S.
Saatchi & Saatchi in Romania
TBWA's Tom Carroll in the U.S.
Wed, 17 Sep 2014 14:50:12 PDT
Miller Lite's creative business represents the third account win in the past week at the Playa del Rey, Calif. office of TBWA\Chiat\Day and is arguably the most daunting marketing challenge among them.
The other brands the office has taken on are Airbnb, which is a global assignment, and Buffalo Wild Wings, a domestic account. Collectively, the three brands spend about $270 million in media annually, including $160 million for Miller Lite alone, according to Kantar Media.
TBWA\C\D becomes the third lead agency for Miller Lite since 2012, after Draftfcb and Saatchi & Saatchi, which split with the brand in the spring. Since then, the brewer has used WPP Group shops like Ogilvy & Mather and Johannes Leonardo on a project basis.
TBWA\C\D, a unit of Omnicom Group, landed the assignment after a pitch against Publicis Groupe's Leo Burnett and a WPP team known as Royal Order. At the same time, the brand's Hispanic marketing responsibilities shifted from Casanova Pendrill to Dieste, another Omnicom shop.
In recent years, the popularity of light beer has declined as consumers increasingly embrace darker microbrews, that is if they haven't abandoned beer all together. Amid such headwinds, big brewers like Miller Lite parent MillerCoors and Anheuser-Busch InBev, whose brands include Budweiser and Miller Lite, talk more about stemming declines than growing share, with some exceptions, of course.
So, the challenge of making the vintage Miller Lite brand hot again is formidable. But with a new leadership team (president Luis DeAnda and CCO Stephen Butler) and some momentum, TBWA\C\D aims to beat the odds. The new agency's first work is expected in the first quarter of next year.