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W+K, Sofia Coppola Craft Holiday Efforts for Gap

Sofia Coppola (The Virgin Suicides, Lost in Translation) is the latest marquee Hollywood director enlisted for Wieden+Kennedy’s “Dress Normal” campaign for Gap, following David Fincher‘s efforts in August and taking the reigns of four holiday  spots — a pair each for broadcast and online.

The ads spin the “Dress Normal” tagline by showing some abnormal (and often cringe-inducing) family holiday moments. But then what’s more normal than pondering the family you’ll never understand? Each spot ends with the message “You don’t have to get them to give them Gap” preceding the tagline. It’s an interesting approach, positioning Gap as a gift for those family members you have no idea what to give to, but it sits well with the “Dress Normal” tagline and Coppola and company do a good job of making it work in most of the ads.

In perhaps the most successful of the spots, “Gauntlet” a girl returns home to her large, boisterous, and often odd family. Perfectly set to the Johnny Cash song “I Got Stripes,” she makes her way through the house greeting her relatives with an awkward expression on her face that says a lot about the effort she’s putting in to deal with these people. It feels like a telling glance into the lives of a particular family, which is the approach taken throughout these efforts and, along with some great song selections, what makes them charming. The other broadcast spot, “Mistletoe,” documents a particularly cringe-worthy moment under the mistletoe at a holiday party. It’s almost hard to watch, but then that makes it fit the “You don’t have to get them to give them Gap” all the more.

In addition to the two online ads — “Crooner” and “Pinball” — the campaign is supported by print and OOH elements, as well as digital banner ads launching on Gap’s social media channels and GapGiftGuide.com on November 3rd. Read more

Thursday Morning Stir

-Watch the history of Nike in three minutes (video above).

-Instagram video ads will begin appearing today.

-Phillips is launching phase two of its mobile-enabled video campaign, “Designed to Play.”

-Lysol bought ads on Google searches for Ebola.

-Investors Group, “a Canadian leader in providing financial planning products and services” has selected DDB Canada as its agency of record.

-Oral Roberts University ties social media to outdoor in “#HeadedtoORU” capaign.

-More creative and tech firms are flocking to downtown Manhattan.

-Ford is releasing a pan-European broadcast spot, directed by Rob Cohen, in which the Mondeo’s LED headlights help guide a plane to landing on a darkened airstrip.

Your McDonald’s Rebrand Is Here

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Back in July, we shared news on McDonald’s upcoming attempt to improve its financial standing via that old canard, “storytelling in advertising.”

August brought word that Leo Burnett would be tasked with handling the reinvention, and today The Wall Street Journal elaborated a bit on the details. The brand’s sort-of-new tagline will be:

“Lovin’ Beats Hatin’”

Yes, that’s it; no Gs. “People familiar with the matter” said that the point behind the slogan, which will officially launch in January and feature in an extended :60 spot set to air during Super Bowl XLIX, is that consumers have the ability to spread happiness despite all the time we spend trolling online. (Some of us, at least.)

No need to stop dancing, though, JT: “I’m Lovin’ It” will still be around.

Read more

Wednesday Odds and Ends

-DDB Canada collaborated with street artists to promote the Vancouver Opera’s new bullying-themed production, Stickboy (video above).

-GIFs change depending on environment and context in this Netflix outdoor campaign from Ogilvy, Paris.

-Jam announced the appointment of Sean Chambers as executive creative director.

-Digital voter education tool SeePolitical has launched animated shorts deconstructing four of California’s November ballot propositions.

-GE embraces Yo app.

-Independent agency ODD announced the hiring of Greg McAlinden, formerly with Ogilvy, as creative director.

-Three reasons why Infiniti chose CP+B.

-Production company DNA announced the addition of Cameron T. Duddy to its directorial roster.

-DDB Australia and McDonald’s built a pop-up store shaped like a giant lunchbox.

-Martin Williams Advertising is launching 20 Ton Brew Co., “a brewery with the agency’s own concoctions on tap.”

PKT Tests ‘The Effects of Halloween Candy’ on Kids for Crest

Publicis Kaplan Thaler has released a new campaign for Crest testing “The Effects of Halloween Candy” on children.

The test is performed by a deadpan moderator who basically lets a group of children in Halloween costumes (the highlight being the little girl dressed as a piñata) binge on candy and records the results. And the results are? “It seems when presented with candy kids exhibit a pathological fixation bordering on psychosis,” according to the moderator. Oh, also, “Piñata has anger issues,” and one little boy threw up in the toilet. Whether you find this cute or annoying (or both) will depend largely on your tolerance for loud children. But then, this is targeted squarely at parents, with the payoff tagline being “Thanks to Crest their teeth are covered” following the message “Halloween candy may have an effect on your kids but not on their teeth.” Now where can we get a piñata costume? Read more

SPONSORED CONTENT

What the Hell Is ‘Contentvertising’? Check Out This Content Marketing Dictionary

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If you’ve attended a content marketing conference this fall, you might have felt like you’d entered a foreign country with its own, strange language—”amplify” and “engage” the common greeting; “KPI” the local currency.

Indeed, whenever a trend overtakes an industry the way content has overtaken marketing, it inevitably ushers in a whole new lingo. This Content Newspeak has the potential to be so dizzying that marketers could suddenly find themselves stumbling back to the dark land of display ads. And no one wants that, especially not us here at Contently. We are a content marketing company, after all.

Check out the “Contently Content Marketing Dictionary”

To help you navigate this overwhelming new terminology, we created the “Contently Content Marketing Dictionary,” filled with all the terms you need to know—and none of the ones you don’t.

In content marketing land, the birth rate for new terms is quite high, so we’ll be updating this consistently on our blog, the Content Strategist. But you should download the first edition of the dictionary below. C’mon, you know you want to see what the hell “contentvertising” means:
Download the “Contently Content Marketing Dictionary”

Translation Presents ‘LeBron James’ First Home Game’ for Sprite

Translation recently debuted a new spot for Sprite documenting LeBron James return to his home town of Akron, Ohio.

Entitled “LeBron James’ First Home Game” the spot follows James as a driver takes him through Akron and to Patterson Park, where Sprite has restored two basketball courts. This footage is interpersed with Akron residents discussing how epic James’ first home game for the Cavaliers will be. James arrives at Patterson Park where a throng of excited fans follows him as he sits and watches a pick up game. “They say home is where your heart is. Well my heart is here, it’s always been,” James says. “This is my first game,” he adds, before telling the guys on the court, “I’ve got next.” (Good luck with that, guys.)

It’s an emotional approach, if somewhat muted from coming on the heels of R/GA’s ad for Beats carrying much the same message. Still, aside from the awful Imagine Dragons song used to soundtrack the spot, it’s well put-together and those not already feeling overly-saturated by ads starring James (he also appears in this recent Kia spot) should find it enjoyable enough, especially Cavs fans. A 30-second version of the spot will run during the Cavs first home game later this month, and Sprite has also issued “commemorative 12-ounce cans featuring James’ likeness that are available in Ohio stores,” according to Creativity.

We Hear: 7-Eleven Looking for a Change

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7-Eleven, the chain beloved of Middle Americans everywhere, signed with Dallas-based TracyLocke back in 2002.

Since then, the brand has gotten ambitious: first their outlets started replacing all the Brooklyn delis where we buy our horny goat weed, then they decided to start sponsoring startups.

Now we hear that they might be looking for a new ad agency as well. A tipster claims that this week the agency received notice that 7-Eleven would not be renewing its contract in 2015.

TracyLocke won the business after GSD&M resigned more than a decade ago, and now it appears that the brand is looking for a change on the creative and marketing fronts. While we haven’t received confirmation on this tip, our last two posts about the departure of one CEO and the hiring of another were 100 percent accurate.

In 2002, 7-Eleven was estimated to be a $30M account; that number is certainly larger now.

Superior Created The Most F***ed Up Halloween Ad of the Year for Vytautas

Halloween tends to lend agencies a certain leniency with how over-the-top, ridiculous and gory they can make their ads. Even so, Superior’s new ad for Lithuanian mineral water brand Vytautas stretches the limits of appropriateness for even this holiday, and is easily the most fucked up Halloween ad you’ll see this year.

Superior teamed up with director Tadas Vidmantas, who was responsible for this spec ad, which Adweek named “the single craziest commercial of 2012″ for the ad, which debuted online yesterday. In the spot, a man is visiting his friend, who lies unconscious in a hospital bed and enjoying a Vytautas. Then he gets the idea to replace the friend’s IV with a bottle of Vytautas, reviving and, uh, arousing the friend as a nurse walks in. What happens next is unexpected, to say the least, and involves flying buttons causing considerable damage. You really need to see it for yourself above because it kind of defies description. And, yes, this is a real ad (not a spec). According to Adweek, there’s even a (slightly tamer) broadcast version for Lithuanian television. The bar for Halloween craziness in advertising has officially been raised, or lowered, depending on your point of view. Read more

Blind Items: Clogged Toilets and Intimate Relations

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Hello and happy hump day, readers.

Now is the time when we dig back through our tips archive to find the claims that no one in their right mind would ever confirm. First: according to another one of those repeat tipsters, a certain New York-based agency’s offices had a bathroom problem earlier this month:

“…the stalls are overflowing with poop.”

If this super-relevant rumor is true, it would seem that the agency in question and M&C Saatchi London recently dealt with opposing problems: the UK employee didn’t flush while the other agency’s employees couldn’t flush. At least the issue doesn’t seem to be gender-specific.

On to more important things…

Read more

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