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Holiday

Meet Guy Holiday, Agency Holiday Card Guru

LA-based agency Ignited created one of the best agency holiday cards of the year by turning to  holiday card guru (and sloth enthusiast) Guy Holiday. Holiday lays down some agency holiday card rules that we hope agencies everywhere will take to heart, while also managing to make us laugh and share his love for sloths.

Ignited describes Guy Holiday as “if BuzzFeed had a baby with Ron Burgundy and then that baby was raised by, well, Agency Spy.” We’re not entirely sure how to take that description, but we think Holiday is a funny character with some good advice regarding agency holiday cards. Guy’s first rule is to “always include a cute animal” because “animals are like mother nature’s stuffed animals.”

This seems like some pretty solid advice. Everybody likes animals, and including one makes your card more memorable. This should be a new requirement for submitting holiday cards: if you don’t have an animal in your video, don’t bother. Preferred animals include foxes, cats and sloths. In denouement, Guy says, “The holidays are about reflection.” Have one sloth? You can use reflection to make it look like there are two sloths. We’re glad Guy brought this up: we have not seen enough reflection in holiday cards this year, so please take his advice and throw a bunch of mirrors into your holiday card next year. Or a bunch of sloths, either way.

Ignited will donate five cents to the American Red Cross for every view, up to $2,500. So, share this video with your friends and co-workers, and help Ignited raise some money for a good cause. It’s funny and it’s only about three minutes long, so you don’t really have any excuses. And please consult Guy’s handful of rules before making any holiday cards.

Trailer for Netflix’s ‘Fireplace For Your Home’ Gives Away Entire Plot

Everyone loves a good trailer, but all too often these days movie trailers reveal the plot in its entirety.

Unfortunately, such is the case with the recently released trailer for Netflix’s “Fireplace For Your Home.” Initial shots of the fireplace setup cause viewers to wonder if the spark will catch fire and spread, offering a great teaser to the new home fireplace simulation you can stream on Netflix whenever you please, before they go too far and show [spoiler alert] that the fire does indeed spread to the other logs. The tongue-in cheek trailer was put together, we hear, by San Francisco-based agency Muhtayzik Hoffer, who also offers up a behind-the-scenes documentary.

Hoffer employs a good deal of deadpan, self-effacing humor in the behind-the-scenes video, exploring the wood selection process that went into the making of the fire (and the video), while the director offers up his take on “foreground logs” versus “background logs” as well as commentary about happy accidents that occurred during the day of filming. “None of this ashing here on the left was written in,” he explains, “It just kind of happened on the day.” The 2:22 mockumentary, featured after the jump, is well worth a quick chuckle for its look at Hoffer’s supposed idiosyncratic process. Read more

The ‘Ideas Man’ Sends His 2013 Season’s Greetings

It’s been over six months since we’ve heard from one Floyd Hayes, the “ideas man” who’s actually had a fairly productive year considering that he’s launched not only what he’s dubbed “the world’s fastest agency” but also a guerilla marketing school. Anyhow, with the year coming to a close and the holiday season upon us, Hayes, the former creative director at U.K./NY shop Cunning, has emerged to give us this holiday-themed, self-promotional clip, which is pretty self-explanatory. Well, he is the ideas man, after all.

 

NY-Based Sister Companies Craft ‘Back to the Future’ Holiday Vine

Vine haters should (and likely already have) probably just skip this one.

New York-based sister companies Bodega StudiosNorthern LightsSuperExploder and Mr. Wonderful worked together to craft a Back to the Future holiday Vine, which you can view above.

It’s a pretty impressive production as far as Vines go, featuring a marshmallow playing the part of Marty McFly, a mini-DeLorean and a pretty real looking flame trail. If you’re looking for a few seconds of mindless holiday fun and/or are an obsessive Back to the Future fan, you can do a lot worse than viewing this one. We’re not exactly sure where the association between the 80s time-travel classic and the winter holidays comes from, but it’s cute and we’ve seen enough standard holiday cards to not bother complaining about such things. Enjoy.

F/Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi Spreads ‘Kitchen Kindness’ for Electrolux Brasil

Earlier this month, Sao Paulo-based F/Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi launched their “Electrolux Kindness Kitchen” campaign for Electrolux Brasil, which filled some of their appliances with food for those who want to do good this Christmas.

Here’s how it works: During this month, “when a consumer buys any of the ‘full’ products, he or she will receive the household appliance at home and Electrolux will donate all the food to those in need.” It’s a pretty simple way to do some holiday philanthropy, and one that can make a world of difference to a family in need. The campaign was designed to give back to the community and highlight “the company’s social positioning in the country.” It includes the above online film, as well as display ads, a hot site, and social media. This campaign’s focus on digital was nothing new for Electrolux, who invested 10% of the company’s communication budget on digital this year — making it the environment they invested in the most.

The video explains the genesis of the campaign, linking it to all manner of small kindnesses, and offers a brief explanation of how it works. It does a good job of introducing the idea behind the campaign and prompting viewers to further action, such as visiting the campaign site.

“Electrolux Kindness Kitchen” is a refreshingly philanthropic campaign, and it gives people a compelling reason to buy a new appliance during the holiday season. More companies should engage in this kind of community action, during December or otherwise. Credits after the jump. Read more

Leo Burnett Chicago Decorates for Allstate

Allstate Home Decorator

Leo Burnett Chicago (and, we hear, New Zealand digital shop Resn) have created the Holiday Home Decorator for Allstate.

The site lets you enter your home address or use a standard house, and then decorate with a number of items including lights, candles, trees and presents. You can also control the intensity of the snowfall. Depending on your actions, you will be interrupted by a different kind of mayhem, which acts as an extension of a readily recognizable Allstate campaign. If you put up a bunch of lights, for example, you’ll probably get faulty wiring that causes the house to catch on fire. It’s a fun little diversion, and probably the only holiday site that will let you burn your house down. What’s not to like?

Planit Scares the S**t out of Employees for Holiday Card

As an agency, the folks over at Baltimore’s Planit live by the mantra that “the best ideas should scare you.” So this year, for their annual outlandish holiday card, they decided to scare their employees and record their priceless reactions for the enjoyment of friends and clients.

We’ve seen a lot of holiday cards here this month, but none of them feature a demonic-looking elf popping out of a large present to scare employees. So Planit definitely gets points for originality, and watching people get the crap scared out of them is always entertaining, so there’s really nothing not to like about Planit’s holiday card. We applaud their unusual approach to spreading holiday cheer fear. This kind of thing can only work once, though, as these employees will likely be apprehensive about any large packages, caroling, cameras, etc. in the future.

Apple Gets Sentimental for the Holidays

And now, an emotional holiday spot for Apple (which sources say is, yes, another TBWA\Media Arts Lab joint).

Entitled “Misunderstood,” the ad (which features Cat Power’s version of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”) follows an adolescent boy and his family through a series of holiday events. The boy always seems to be on his iPhone instead of engaging with the rest of the family, and that certainly seems to be the family’s assumption. At the end of the spot, however, it’s revealed that the whole time he was creating a holiday slideshow for his family.

The :90 effort is about as sentimental as you would expect a holiday ad from Apple to be, but benefits from the moment of relative surprise (okay, it’s not exactly a shocking moment) when the boy’s intentions are revealed. There have been plenty of holiday spots that have attempted to be funny or even controversial this year, but not all that many that go for good old-fashioned holiday sentimentality. So, even if it may be a bit overly emotional, this entry from the Cupertino, CA giant is not entirely unwelcome.

 

And Now, a 2013 Recap Courtesy of Seiden’s Holiday Card

The holiday card for New York agency Seiden features the Harlem Shake, an old lady reading Fifty Shades of Grey, and just about every trend of 2013 that they could fit in 2:39.

Their card begins with a setup of Matt Seiden himself attempting a simple, holiday speech. He’s quickly stopped and told “You have to walk it, not talk it.”

“Let’s see what the agency can do,” Seiden says, and thus begins the barrage of 2013-ness. If you haven’t had enough of Macklemore, the Harlem Shake, YOLO, “What Did The Fox Say?” and other such trends, or you just want to see the Seiden crowd get goofy, check out the video above. And please don’t lick any hammers. Happy holidays.

Maurice Lévy Returns, Now with Balloons in Tow, for Publicis Groupe’s 2014 Greeting

publicis-groupe2014

Maurice Lévy is back this year for the new Publicis Groupe New Year’s greeting. After toying with YouTube’s functionality last year,  the holding company, with the aid of their DigitasLBi France unit, has once again found a new way to make their greeting interactive.


This year, Publicis built their message around the theme of #TheMoretheMerrier in honor of their expected merger with Omnicom. To accomplish this, they’ve made it so “The more people that join in during the video, the merrier it will become.” So, what does that mean exactly? Well, if you watch the video alone, nothing special happens. But if you watch with a friend, Maurice Lévy will deliver his speech in a confetti storm. Adding more people to the mix will result in “gospel singers, cheerleaders, Chinese dragons and a few other surprises.” It’s a pretty cool concept, managing to be interactive in an intriguing new way.

 

To accomplish this, Publicis’ tech team developed “a fancy facial detection algorithm that allows a webcam to count how many people are actually watching the video together.” The facial recognition software was conceived by “a 21 year old Russian math genius” working for DigitasLBi France. The software is the “first of its kind to detect up to ten faces simultaneously” while the video plays. “The More the Merrier” is the first video to count the number of viewers, rather than views, on YouTube. That’s a lot of technological firsts for a New Year’s greeting. By the way, in case you were wondering, it takes 1,487 balloons to cover Maurice Lévy.

Credits after the jump. Read more

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