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Mastercard steals from Swingers = Priceless.

When the movie Swingers was released in 1996 the script and the story brought out the best from the actors in it and propelled them all to big time Hollywood fame. One hilarious scene in Swingers was when Jon Favreau's character "Mike" leaves increasingly pathetic messages on "Nikki's" answering machine, as the machine keeps cutting him off. (scene here). Mastercard has just released a commercial where the scene is nearly identical, right down to the character's names, Mike and Nikki. Tut tut McCann-Erickson, did you really think the world wouldn't notice? Is this an intentional homage (considering the names) or just a lazy rip-off? You decide.
Super adgrunts view the ad in the commercial archive

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I Smell a Rat - An Uncaged and Curious Rodent-Based Doppelg

If you live in the United States and have your television hooked up to something besides a rabbit-ear antenna, chances are you've seen a few thousand horrid commercials over the last month or so for a cell phone ringtone/wallpaper service called Jamster.

Well, this weekend I had the ol' boob tube on one of the networks appropriate for my demographic when a new spot for this company came on. Now, usually I've reacted with a scream of anguish whilst simultaneously curling up into the fetal position, but somehow... in some way... this Jamster spot was different.

I've seen it before, and not in my nightmares.

(Read more...)

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Quiznos dusts off Baby Bob

Last year, we wondered if there were Rats in Quiznos subs with their Sponge Monkey adverts. And before that we saw raised by wolves, and even a Super Bowl ad where poor Chef Jimmy forgot his pants.

In 2004, Quiznos cited "creative differences" and parted ways with the Martin Agency, who gave them their Sponge Monkey fame. They hired Siltanen & Partners out of Los Angeles, who circa 1999, created an ad for Federal Way's Freeinternet.com (aka FreeI Networks, Inc.) using Baby Bob.

(read more...)

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What's the truth about Splenda?

I've been stewing about the news circulating recently about Splenda and it's got me a bit wound up (see Groups Asks Johnson & Johnson to Stop Lying About Splenda). So much so, in fact, that I've read posts on Adland for some time, but never before made one here.

Either Splenda's a case of very savvy marketing—as I'm sure J&J would like to claim—or its false, misleading advertising. I'm inclined to the latter, or what Jon Entine at Ethical Corporation has called "sleight of hand marketing" and "shifty advertising." I’ve been following the press around this for the last week, even got a note from a friend yesterday who, like me, was concerned about what she was hearing.

Why do I care? On a professional level, as a marketing consultant, I think industry self-regulation will only work if marketers adhere to rules--truth-in-advertising being an important one. On a personal level, I've been a Splenda user, in fact switched from pale blue packets to yellow over a year ago, because I believed the phrase "Made from sugar so it tastes like sugar" to mean that Splenda has sugar in it and is a healthier alternative to the all-chemical sweeteners. I was such a devotee that, until the last few days, I carried yellow packets in a cute orange wallet in my purse, just in case I went somewhere, had a cup ‘o Joe, and they didn’t stock it. AND I lobbied others to join me (including my mother and her boyfriend who was recently advised by his doctor to lower his sugar intake and decrease calories). "You want sugar without the calories, a sugar-substitute without chemicals?" I asked my mom.
(read more..)

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Lee and Dan and Ted

At the risk of boring the crap out of everyone with yet another take on the suicide bomber viral ad scandal, turns out this isn't the first time Volkswagen has loosed its legal jackals on guys like Lee and Dan.

In 1973, it was National Lampoon that VW had in its sights. All because of this spoof ad the magazine ran. The headline: If Ted Kennedy drove a Volkswagen, he'd be President today.

Is there a difference between then and now? Believe it.

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Radio Advertising Bureau

Hear Mary Bennett, executive vice president of the national marketing division at Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB), examine the relationship between advertisers and agencies and what creatives are doing to get through the clutter. Mary also discusses RAB’s Radio Ad Effectiveness Lab study that measures consumer reactions to radio, TV and newspaper advertising and how radio has a more emotional and personal one-on-one affect.

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Halloween dressup winner - the iPod ad outfit.

Oh my, of all the silly things to dress up as for Halloween, how is this iPod ad outfit for starters? Someone wore that to this party. You know that you have made a huge impact on pop culture when weird stuff like this happens - someone please give Art Director Susan Alinsangan a hall of fame award of any kind, we suggest a new category just for her, the "stickiest Art Direction evah Hall of Fame award". Spelled just like that, yo.

Previous ipod chatter: party posters, Download Jesus iPod ad, Presidents bulge, an iPod?, FUEL iPod parody, St. Georges Subway, Toronto. All the ipod films can be found using the search.

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