Dr. Pepper owes every american 20 oz's

I know it is old news. Apparently the coupons will be available here starting on the 23rd. Good on Dr. Pepper for delivering. Not sure why they would offer it in the first place.

Besides wondering what Dr. Pepper has to do with G'n'R what I want to know is:

  1. How many Americans will visit the site? (total unique visitors)
  2. How many visitors will register and print the coupon?
  3. What is the abandonment rate of the registration form (people hate emails they don't want)
  4. What is the redemption rate?
  5. What is the average basket purchase accompanying the coupon?
  6. Where are the being redeemed? Convenience stores, grocery, gas stations?
  7. What is the increase in Dr. Pepper sales in the following 3 months?
Do you think Dr. Pepper is tracking. The response to this offer could potentially be huge. Ignoring this type of available data would be a missed opportunity in my opinion.

Does our industry deserve an ass kicking?

Ad Age published this article about how the death of Detroit would wallop the advertising world.

General Motors Corp., Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler together accounted for 3.3% of 2007 U.S. measured ad spending, which equal $4.6 billion in measured spending.

"The world's top four agency companies -- Omnicom Group, WPP Group, Interpublic Group of Cos. and Publicis Groupe -- count on Detroit's Big Three for as much as 6% of revenue.

If one or more of Detroit's carmakers goes away, gets smaller or goes into bankruptcy, "all media companies need to be concerned and there will be an impact on agencies,..."

Now, I'll be the first to say that the North American Auto Industry deserves everything that they are going through right now but thats not the focus of this rant.

Lets focus on the advertising/marketing industry. Do agencies and marketers need to carry some blame for this? Is it our responsibility to speak up and tell our clients if we think their products suck, if we think thier R&D should be focusing on alternative fuels, hybrids and compacts not hummers and F350 supercharged kingcab extended box pick-up trucks. Or do we just keep accepting briefs for companies on the march to the grave.

There have been times that I have thought..."if they just spent this 2.3 million media and production budget on customer service training they would most likely see a larger ROI from retaining existing customers than us pushing a product with no differentiation with the hopes of acquiring customers".

Is that our job? Obviously the agency would loose some revenue BUT would it gain respect, gain a listening ear and maybe redefine their relationship from a advertising agency/client relationship to a relationship as a true business partner.

I am interested in your thoughts.


Digital Suicide

You might have heard of this story already, but I just read a post on Valleywag about a teenager who committed live suicide on the popular American video site

Abraham Biggs was an avid Lifecaster on the site (essentially, thousands of people are creating their own life-reality TV shows and posting them to video sites across the web. Their every move, feeling and life experience). On the Wednesday prior to his death, he posted a suicide note to the site, and then took a handful of sleeping pills and sat on his bed (in front of a streaming webcam). Users watched the live video and some thought it was a joke, others edged him on during the entire process.

Nobody called the police or notified authorities.

Hours later, someone found him and the medics / police showed up to try and revive him (again, all shown on the streaming webcam).

Justin.TV CEO Michael Seibel has made no official comment other than to say that any video with "objectionable" content is flagged and remove. Talk about an understatement.

This is tragic. For the family and the people watching the broadcast. However Valleywag did point out that a few users edged him on and should be flagged. It seems that when we are online, we hide behind the veil of a username and might not really think too much about our actions.

As the web grows in strength and user generated content expands exponentially, I expect that the generation of scary, questionable and personal content will come more and more into question. When anyone can broadcast their own story and suicide, the web can become a pretty scary place. There is no way for anyone to stop something like this and hopefully this incident doesn't generate a slew of copies.

Few people talk about the downside of user-generated content. This is it.

Spamalot [almost] Creates Loyalty Beyond Reason

I went to see Spamalot last night in West London and noticed a pretty big opportunity for the show that I doubt they are capitalizing on. First off, some context:

The show has been running for the last few years and has had some big success. Most shows have been sold out in NYC and London, however the credit crunch has hit this city hard and after going to a few shows this week, there are way more empty seats than I could have imagined (about 70-75% full, that's it).

The cool thing about Spamalot is that, near the end of the show, the cast brings up someone from the audience and actually sings a song about them - thanking them really - for being a part of the show. At the end of the song, one of the cast members snaps a pic with a Polaroid with the person on stage with the entire cast, gives them a small trophy and the audience member goes back to their seat. The song is hilarious and it would have been unbelievably embarrising to be the person who got called up - that being said, it's a hell of a story to tell your friends. Especially with picture proof of you on the stage.

This tactic - no doubt - helps to drive word-of-mouth for the show. It also creates a person who loves your brand. With two shows a day, six days a week, that's 12 people who you've just given an experience too that they will never forgegt in their lives. All they get out of it is a tiny trophy and single picutre.

Why not do something more?

Why not start a webpage / social network with the information and profile of these people who have been called up to stage? Include their quotes about the show telling people how great it was, show their picture on stage, allow them to create their own T-Shirts and custom Spamalot gear to send to their friends (posters, Album covers, whatever) - essentially, let them build of this experience and spread their message to everyone they know not just their close family and friends. Maybe it could be an exclusive Facebook / MySpace / BeBo group or a Twitter feed that highlights that shows person's name...whatever it is, just build off it.

What I really learned from the show? Create brand enthauists by doing something special for one of your customers. Only one person made it on stage, but everyone felt great to watch it and the person up there felt even better.

What can you do for just 1% of your base? Don't try to do something for everyone - it comes off cheap, mass-driven and fake. But what about rewarding the best customers? Or showing your entire base that they could have the chance to do something special too (as long as they stay loyal).

It seems that the best strategies these days create loyalty beyond reason. Few brands to it because they try to appeal to everyone. But those that can create it, tap into the Holy Grail of brand enthusiasts.


Be A Good Person

I feel like I've heard of this viral campaign from BK before (for another brand) but can't remember which one. Essentially, BK is sending random people to the streets in crowded places. They stratigically drop their wallet and when someone picks it up to give back to them they reply,

"Don't worry, it's on the King"

The wallets have a message (posted above) and could have anywhere from $1-1000 in them - straight up cash. 

I like this idea but wonder how heavily BK will be pursuing it in the mass media (and how many wallets they are thinking about actually dropping). I also wonder if they've targeted popular people (celebs, etc) to talk about the experience and film them for web use (like any reality TV "surprise your on camera" show). 

Found via Organic's blog

Scary Times

From Gaping Voids twitter feed:

"A young advertising creative I know had all these interviews line up. EVERY person who was gonna interview him got laid off this month."

Quote of the Day

"The bullet that kills you never hits you between the eyes. It always hits you in the temple. You never see it coming, because you're looking in the wrong direction."

- EDS Futurist Jeff Wacker (quoted by Thomas Friedman in Hot, Flat and Crowded)

I love this quote. It's said here in an environmental context, however I think it can easily be applied to ad people who aren't thinking digital (and who never really want too). We're going to see a lot of dead people on Ad Street in the next few years and I assume, they will be 100% temple shots.

I read this quote while reading Friedman's killer new book on the plane (worst trip ever) to London. This is going to be a slow week for posts (on my end) but I've already seen a ton of great stuff here that I'm going to be blogging all next week - including the first advertising art gallery I've ever been too (which was sweet), some great shows and museums and, of course, Tube advertising.


8 years later...Wassupp.

Not sure how I missed this one. Wassupp...change. True.

We truly did witness something amazing. Very few events have activated an audience, kickstarted creativity and made a nation feel the need to create and be apart of change like the US election.

The market for something to believe in is infinite.

If I had one wish it would sound something like this.

Charter for compassion:
Here is a social media project that is worth your attention and your time.

From the site:

By recognizing that the Golden Rule is fundamental to all world religions, the Charter for Compassion can inspire people to think differently about religion. This Charter is being created in a collaborative project by people from all over the world. It will be completed in 2009. Use this site to offer language you'd like to see included. Or inspire others by sharing your own story of compassion.


Surprisingly Good

Paul and I were discussing the latest brand spot from Pfizer (posted below). It's got a huge cinema buy here in Toronto and I was shocked when I first saw this spot (and then learned it was from Pfizer).

What I like about this spot is that it's repositioning the brand to be something more than just a drug company. In the last few years, we've all heard about the tainted drugs, the massive profits that some of these brands have had and the high costs of basic prescription medicine. What this spot does is really say that - in a way - we don't need drugs to be healthy, we can do it own our own.

Obviously there are some shots (cancer patients) that are a bit closer to the product, however I think the track, tone and idea behind this spot put Pfizer in a place well above their competitors.

I don't think that people think about the brands that their drugs come from - they just listen to their doctor and hope that it works. That being said, if I was ever to take a Pfizer-created medication, this spot would make me feel somewhat good about doing so.

TBWA's first Pepsi Brief

Pepsi to TBWA: "We need a response to this in market by next Thursday. Ohh and by the way congratulations."

TBWA catches the Pepsi Spirit

TBWA Chiat Day. Its the agency.

BBDO is no longer Pepsi's lead agency. BBDO had the account for 48 years. That lenght of a relationship is unbelievable. I know of Agency's that brag after keeping accounts for 5 years. Read more on Adweek.

Is Ford next? Will they ever leave Y&R?