Some Cool TV

AdAge's article on the month's most liked TV spots got me thinking about some of the new advertsing out there. Here are two worth checking out.

Coke - 102
This feels like old Coke too me - all brand and feel good. It's a nice idea and I hope that the guy is real.

Microsoft - Kid
I'm not a big fan of the "I'm a PC" work. It started off with a huge splash with all that Jerry and Bill stuff and really fell off the map after the big-celeb filled 60 launched. My guess is that this is all over the US in all types of mediums but up North, we don't see much of the big Green giant. Still, this is one of my favorite spots of the campaign. A bit scary when you consider that every 4 and a half year-old is probably more tech savvy than 90% of people 30+ in the world.

The Rookies: Kylie, Age 4 ½ from Windows Videos on Vimeo.


Minority Report - It's Here

I've always thought that Minority Report was a cool movie from an advertising sense. The idea that billboards could have eye scans that would access our data and create targeted messages just for us seems crazy - until you realize that many digital sites and online ads (um...Facebook?) are getting close to this.

Still, the real world seems like a safe place. Until you watch this TED talk.

Simply astounding. The idea that you could look someone in the eye on the street and instantly find out their interests, their hobbies and..well..their information is crazy. Sure, I can find out about you after we meet by Google-ing your name but still...I've got to wait a few minutes.

The applications for this technology are endless. If they make it look cooler and a bit less intrusive, it's going to be big. Maybe not in 5 years...but soon enough.

Southwest Rap [Give this guy a raise]

Props to PJC for finding this bad boy (I stole the post). If I'm an executive at Southwest airlines, I give this guy a small bonus and a few free flights for his family and friends. This is going to get big. Nothing like some good old family fun every once and a while.


Great Advice from KR

We've posted about Kevin Roberts before (he's the CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi worldwide) but I loved his recent post so much I had to blog it.

Roberts talks about how easy it is to become sidetracked - especially during a stressful, economic time. There is always so much going on, too much work to get through in the day and not enough time to really think about the things that matter - in life and in work. So how do you overcome the stress and the huge pile of papers on your desk?

Make a list.

Kevin suggests these 5 key things for your list (that you should make Tomorrow):
  1. Refer to your 100 Day Plan. (Saatchi operates under the idea of creating 100 day plans in order to accomplish the important goals that can't wait. I love this idea and think it has huge potential wherever you work)
  2. List what needs to be done next.
  3. Start each item with a verb. You want a list of real, physical actions you will take.
  4. Cross off at least half the items on your list. Decide what’s to go and what’s to stay based on importance, not urgency.
  5. Get started.
Simple, straightforward and upfront.

It's funny but isn't this exactly how great campaigns are created? A single-minded message, a straightforward brief and a strong point. Most importantly, great work requires focus. Ignore the stuff around the edges and just focus on what matters.

But remember, write it down first.

Diddy talks Twitter

Follow his tweets at @iamdiddy

Follow mine at @pcrowe

Samsungs Best Effort to date? The viral continues

Well Samsungs back with another viral video. I am not sure where they found these guys but good for them.

Check out some of their other efforts here and here

Training for the big game

Really enjoy this new video from the folks at Lowe. To help promote a soccer game on April 1st between Uzbekistan and Australia, Lowe created this video (which has gone viral) and a few TV spots.

It's along the lines of the usual "Is it real?" video but I like the concept and think it's pretty funny.


Have a Website? You Need to Read This...

A few months ago, someone once challenged me on my web 'knowledge' (not that I have much). It was an in the moment, fun insult but the proof point about my lack of knowledge was the fact that I didn't read the official Google Blog. I laughed it off in the meeting and, when it was over, ran straight to my browser and added the blog to my Reader.

Turns out the joke was on me. The Google blog is sweet.

Not only does it give anyone access into one of the most forward-looking digital companies, it provides users with excellent tips and tricks for all their web endeavors.

Take their series on creating a great website. The first post discusses how to use Google analytics to your advantage. It's a quick read and well worth it.

The second is more about site design. Google's top four tips?
  • Tip #1: Pass the 8 second test. At first glance, a visitor should understand the purpose of your website within a few seconds. People are busy and have limited attention spans — you want to keep them from hitting the dreaded back button.
  • Tip #2: Tell them what's in it for them. Create clear and tangible benefits (e.g., "Save more! Make extra money! Look better with our product!").
  • Tip #3: Use compelling images. Try product images instead of generic stock photos, icons with blocks of text, and buttons instead of links. Keep in mind that a low-quality, irrelevant image can kill your site's credibility.
  • Tip #4: Close the sale. Help your visitors take the next step. Make that step clear and easy to reach; don't make them hunt for it. Action words like "buy now" may work better than "add to cart," for instance.
Great thoughts - especially the 8 second test. How many sites have you been too where you just don't know where to begin let alone click? Read the full post here.

Twitter StreamGraphs: Real Time Visuals

Mashable has a great post today about 6 visualization tools for Twitter. I've been playing with a few of them and Twitter StreamGraphs is one worth testing out. It takes real-time Tweeds against a key word of your choice and gives you a great visual (that's recent...the picture above is from the last 8 hours or so) about how your term is being used - based on the last 1000 Tweeds that have the term in it.

This tool is valuable when it comes to understanding how users are talking about your brand. I used "Skittles" as a test and you can see some of the different associations with it over the last couple of days (for some reason 'kill' is now appearing, most likely because everyone at SXSW is sick of hearing about the social marketing campaign that recently launched).

Test it out against the brand you're working on if you have a minute. I guarantee if you send the visual through to your client they will think you are a novice social media expert.

Changing the Game

In times of recession, businesses and brands either panic or reinvent themselves for the better. They change their business model and give their consumers something different - a new product or service, a new way to engage or ask them for their opinion or, simply, a message that surprises them and forces them to think differently about what they previously thought about your brand.

Take the Florida Panthers. For years, they've been a team in the NHL that has been on the wrong side of winning. Losing records and a market more interested in the NBA lead to low ticket sales. Florida isn't Toronto and they need to do whatever they can to get people into the games. And by people I don't mean crazed Hockey fans, but casual viewers as well.

That's why I love Randy Miller so much. Miler has been the announcer for the Panthers for the past few seasons and is also the host of a popular radio show. One day on his show, he asked his listeners to send in recommendations on pop cultural references from Hollywood movies and Randy guaranteed that he would try to insert them into his actual NHL broadcast after the Panthers scored a goal. Sounds fun doesn't it?

Within a few weeks, he had hundreds of submissions and the broadcasts started to slightly change. Here's a clip of some of the latest:

Game changing. I love it and wish that I could watch every game with Randy announcing it. Imagine the possibilities and the added excitement around a goal being scored. It's sweet, fun and different - three key things to think about when you're trying to change a product that's been the same for the last 100 some-odd years. It also asks people to be involved in something that's been closed to the public forever. With Randy, I now have a vested interest in the game (and the goals) with the hopes that he will read my suggestion.

Sure - there are people that don't like this. It hurts the game, takes the focus away from it. Whatever. As a casual fan, this is sweet. Next time in Florida, I'll swing by a game just to hear Randy scream out the calls.

Thanks to Dave for the heads up!


It's been a busy couple of days. PJC and I have been working on some fun new business stuff and AdJoke has been neglected. I promise a ton of cool stuff this week so please don't give up on us. We will be back soon.