Blow Your Mind

At a cottage a few weekends ago, a good friend of mine blew my mind by simply plugging in his iPhone and playing the latest Girl Talk album.

Remember the revolutionary Grey Album by DJ Dangermouse? (A mash up featuring Jay Z's Black Album and the Beatles White album). Girl Talk is like DJ Dangermouse on crack.

His tracks are a compilation of new and old song (lots of 80's) with hundreds of samples mixed in to one, solid tune. I'm a huge fan - especially at work during mundane projects that require some solid computer time.

What I really like about this, though, is that it shows that there is a whole world of music out there just from sampling existing, succesful songs. DJ Dangermouse was the first to digitize this approach and spread it, and Girl Talk is pushing it to the next level.
Thanks to Chris and V-Ron for the reco...

The First Rule of Mass Communications

Seth Godin recently posted the following article on his blog:

"Organizations will work tirelessly to de-personalize every communication medium they encounter.
  • Radio ads used to be live, personal and spoken by an individual.
  • TV ads used to feature actual people, demonstrating something, usually live.
  • Phone calls involved a live speaker, talking, with permission, to another person.
  • Email used to be honest interactions between consenting adults.
  • Facebook pages (and Wikipedia, too) were built by people, not staffs.
  • Twits came from real people, and so did instant messages.

One by one, the mass marketers have insisted on robocalling, spamming, jingling and lying their way into our lives. The pronoun morphs from "you" to "me" to "us" to "the corporation" ...The public works tirelessly to flee to actual interactions between real people, and our organizations work even more diligently (and with more leverage) to corporatize and anonymize the interactions. The irony, of course, is that an organization with guts can go in the opposite direction and win.
My name is Seth Godin and I approved this message."

I agree with Seth that large corporations like to make their communications as mass as possible. The reason for this is pretty obvious - the more people you appeal to (in theory), the greater the chance you have to resonate with the few you want. It's pretty scary for a marketer to only focus on the niche few they are targeting - especially if the creative and communications don't break through.

That being said, the more mass you go, the more people block your message.

PowerShares - Your ideas may scare you

I enjoyed this very visually arresting spot. Powerful and humorous when you think about (love the little ideas comment), but my only criticism is the lack of call to action. Not even a URL or "Ask your broker about Powershares today".

I hope that they move this into print. I am interested to see how it is executed.


Nice Print

Some more good work from CP+B.


Digital Top 10 Blogs [Excluding AdJoke]

A number of collegues in the last little while have asked me what some of the top blogs and sites are that I read on a daily basis. Although my Google Reader is pretty jammed (with a lot of sites that I never really check out), there are 10 that I try to check out everyday.

Check out the list below and if you have any sites (other than Entertainment gossip rags) that you make a note of looking at daily, be sure to send them our way.

1. Mashable - the #1 Social Media News Site on the Web
By far, the best place to learn about any new trends in social media, social media tips and tricks, brands that are winning (or losing) in the space, etc. Updated 50-60 times / day.

2. Wired Top Stories - I'm a fan of the magazine and usually read it monthly but if you want to check out the hottest stories in tech, this is the place.

3. Logic + Emotion
Written by David Armano, VP Experience Design at Critical Mass, this blog contains great visuals to help explain Web 2.0, online process, branding and different strategies. A good place to find the right visual for a presentation.

4. Adrants
From a pure, 'what are the new campaigns going on in North America' standpoint, this is the best resource. Updated about 30-40 times daily, agencies and brands from across the world submit their new campaigns to be shared to Adrants readers.

5. Contagious Magazine
A quality, European creative resource for new campaigns. In depth reviews on what brands are doing and a worthwhile resource to check out when you are interested in international work.

6. BoingBoing - the #1 Blog in the World
Based out of Toronto, BoingBoing is the most popular blog on the internet and provides a collection of neat articles, products, reviews and technologies. It's not ad specific and quite random but it's important to read the place where the most bloggers link too.

7. Seth Godin (the most respected, marketing blogger around)
Also from Toronto but now living in New York, Godin posts regularly on marketing related strategies, questions and discussions. His style is quite simple but he's a good resource to check out if you're looking for new thinking / ideas.

8. Valleywag (Silicon Valley's version of Perez Hilton - a gossip tech site)
Updated 80-100 times daily, Valleywag is full of technology news, start-ups, Google / Facebook gossip and essentially anything that is going on in the Valley.

9. Digg
The central user-generated news site. If you are ever wondering what web video's are being watched, what articles the masses are interested in or random things that you could never find anywhere else, Digg is the place to check out. All bloggers use it as a way to enhance their traffic and top stories can receive hundreds of thousands of page views in a day.

10. Adverblog
One of the top, digital blogs on the web. Continually updated - specifically with digital campaigns and sites - it's a good place to look for new web trends and microsites.

Follow Your Instinct with Samsung

A friend of mine forward me this new campaign for the Samsung Instinct (dubbed as one of the many "iPhone killers"). It's a cool viral tool that has been used for some personal projects on the web before but I think this is one of the first times a brand has leveraged the "choose your own video adventure" format on YouTube.

Start your journey by watching the following video:

Hopefully, you've clicked on one of the options (take a cab or follow your instinct) and continued the journey. If you take a quick peek at the number of views the campaign has recieved, you can see it's well over 80,000 (cumulative numbers using the total videos).

Developed by Fjord at Cossette in Toronto (through CD Paulo Salomao), the campaign has been getting a lot of good press, especially in the blogosphere.

I like the campaign if only because it breaks from the typical "let's throw something up on YouTube" approach that is all to common these days. I'm sure the client liked it as well becasue it didn't cost much (my guess...who knows...) and it gives them the ability to say that they've done something no other brand has done inside or outside their category.

I do wonder how many people see the journey through from start to finish. Obviously the hot girl / one night stand factor help to see the story through. That being said, even if you watch two of the clips, that's a success.

Thanks to Katie for the link!


Microsoft Photosynth Now Live

Blow your mind. Seriously.

Click here to download it now.