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Posts Tagged ‘Colleen O’Donnell’

Venables Bell & Partners Go ‘West of Expected’ for Skyy Vodka

Venables Bell & Partners have an off-center campaign for Skyy Vodka, introducing the new tagline “West of Expected” for the California brand.

The new campaign sees improv actor Paul Welsh play a spokesman for the brand, lecturing in some kind of planetarium setting and using cosmic terminology as an analogy for drinking/bar culture. In the 30-second “Tipping” for example, Welsh explains that tipping (in this case giving a mouse in a maze a piece of cheese, for some reason) brings order to chaos, forming a connection with the bartender and getting you good service all night. In the similarly-toned “Attraction” a wing lemon (used to exemplify a wing man) bring together opposites: apples and oranges. It’s a strange approach, for sure, but then Skyy Vodka is an unusual brand — a California company with mostly Old World competition. The “West of Expected” tagline fits Skyy perfectly, and leaves room for a wealth of different approaches going forward.

“In the industry as a whole, and especially vodka, everyone is trying to out-cool themselves and appeal to people’s ego and vanity,” VB&P Executive Creative Director Will McGinness told Adweek. “We wanted to push off the industry norms and the Russian or Eastern European vodka companies and do our own thing and celebrate this different kind of vodka.”

Stick around for “Attraction”and credits after the jump. Read more

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BBDO NY Celebrates Fourth of July for Guinness

BBDO New York solemnly pays tribute to servicemen in their Fourth of July spot for Guinness, entitled “Empty Chair.”

The spot, the latest U.S. installment of the brand’s “Made of More” campaign, was created in collaboration with Biscuit Filmworks and director Noam Murro. Its patriotism-stoking approach is nothing new to beer advertising, as Anomaly’s “A Hero’s Welcome” Super Bowl spot for Budweiser this year (to cite just one example) also celebrated American veterans in a somewhat cheesy fashion. How you view the ad will depend largely on your opinion of such an approach (as either a welcome homage or emotional manipulation) but the 90-second “Empty Chair” is certainly well-crafted. It opens on a bartender pouring a Guinness and leaving it at an empty table, an act she repeats many times over the course of the ad, at one point even stopping someone from taking a chair from the table. A delayed reveal at the spot’s conclusion puts everything into perspective, followed by Guinness’ “Made of More” tagline, which syncs well with the ad’s message.

It’s worth noting that between this solemn spot from Guinness and the opposite approach taken by Newcastle, the most memorable ads of the Independence Day season came from non-American brewers. Stick around for credits after the jump. Read more

RPA Debuts ‘Fit for You’ for Honda

RPA is promoting the launch of the all new 2015 Honda Fit with an integrated campaign entitled “Fit For You.”

Centered around a pair of 30-second television spots starring actor/comedian Nick Thune, the campaign also includes digital and social media activations, as well as multicultural campaign extensions featuring award-winning drummer Questlove and comedian Felipe Esparza, as well as a promotion in the upcoming game Ultra Street Fighter IV. The TV spots starring Thune, clearly aimed at Generation Y, find Thune answering a series of questions about the Fit and demonstrating its capabilities. Thune assures viewers that the new Honda Fit is “gluten-free,” can fit synths, the Stanley Cup, or even a whole dorm room full of stuff (minus the roommate) and is perfect for a move to Seattle. A further pair of spots will roll out in the coming weeks.

“The campaign takes a typical product demonstration and gives it an unexpected twist to show how the 2015 Honda Fit answers the needs of the customer in a very direct yet humorous way,” said Jeff Conrad, Honda division senior vice president and general manager. “The campaign leverages the Fit’s unique combination of space and versatility plus innovative technology and class-leading fuel efficiency to clearly show that the 2015 Honda Fit is the leader of the subcompact class.” Stick around for credits and a second spot after the jump. Read more

Karmarama Imagines Brewery/Brassiere Owner as ‘The Boss’ for Cobra

Karmarama created “The Boss” in a new campaign for Cobra Beer (not to be confused with Anheuser-Busch’s disgusting King Cobra brand of malt liquor, something of an undergraduate staple in the states).

The titular character is an always on the job owner of Cobra Beer and a successful brassiere company BraCo by night. (It’s an anagram, get it?) As you may have already gathered, the concept is more than a bit reminiscent of Havas’ popular “The Most Interesting Man in the World” character for Dos Equis. While Karmarama are certainly not alone in borrowing from Dos Equis, their “The Boss” is probably closer to Jonathan Goldsmith‘s character than anything else we’ve seen. (Perhaps a little too close?) He shares with Dos Equis’ spokesman both an underlying elegant cool, and seemingly superhuman capabilities — “The Boss,” the spot elucidates “never sleeps, because he’s living the dream.” Like Dos Equis’ campaign, “The Boss” also relies on tongue in cheek humor (such as when employees rearrange the Cobra letters above the entrance) to deliver its message with “broad appeal to their target audiences.”

“This was a sprawling international shoot and it was such a fun concept and a great team – Dave Buonaguidi, Rich ConnellClem Woodward and Jenny O’Connell of Karmarama were great to work with and very involved in all the right ways,” says Biscuit director, Mike Maguire. “The concept was always about The Boss and his two companies, but the simplicity of this great play-on-words, it just took the humor to a new, wildly absurd and fun place.”

Stick around for credits after the jump, and let us know what you think of the spot in the comments section. Read more

Your Undead Post, Part II: Hyundai Builds Zombie-Killing Machine in ‘Chop Shop’

“If you want to survive, listen up.”

So begins Innocean’s new spot “Speech” for Hyundai (Two undead posts in a day? What the hell, it’s October). The speaker of those lines credits his ability to live off the land and fight for his survival, but an onlooker points to his Hyundai zombie-killing vehicle. Although the spot’s attempt at humor falls mostly flat, it was  perfectly timed, debuting last night during the premiere of AMC’s The Walking Dead. The 30 second spot was also show during Talking Dead last night, while “The Walking Dead Chop Shop” — the site that lets users build their own Zombie Survival Machine — launched during San Diego’s Comic-Con in July. Innocean’s television spot will be accompanied by three digital spots in all — “Speech,” “Cooler” and “Difference — airing on Hyundai’s social media channels.

The spot functions not just as a stand-alone advertisement, but as a way to drive viewers to the “The Walking Dead Chop Shop” site, which is a great tie-in. Actually, I’m kind of not sure if the spot is a tie-in for the site, or the site is a tie-in for the spot. I’m going with the former, since the site existed first. At any rate, we covered “The Walking Dead Chop Shop” back in July, but for the link-averse, here’s a short review: you can use any of three Hyundai vehicles as your base-vehicle and then pimp them out with all kinds of accessories, like razor wire, a “horde plow” and (of course) flame throwers and cattle guns. This isn’t exactly my sort of thing, but it should be a lot of fun for the car/weapon happy and zombie-obsessed. Credits after the jump.

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StubHub’s Ticket Oak Returns to Give ‘Couples Counseling’

StubHub’s Ticket Oak is back from hiatus with some advice for a bored couple, which for this particular plant means a concert ticket giveaway. “Not everyone has a Ticket Oak, but everyone has StubHub,” the ad from SF-based Duncan/Channon ends. In past, Ticket Oak has presented sports game tickets and orchestra-center tickets for a sold-out show. He’s a generous character, made even more loveable through his social media presence. He carried on a multiple-tweet conversation about kittens with @zachford2 and made lady oak jokes on Facebook.

Ticket Oak also showed up naked in ESPN’s Body Issue, on the side of StubHub food trucks, and will be appearing in pop-up shops for fans to take selfies with the big guy. It’s a sweet campaign for a ticket company, endearing users instead of estranging them. With help from their foliaged friend, StubHub will keep on growing.

Credits after the jump

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StubHub Apparently A Big Fan of Screaming Trees

It’s that magical time of year when unless your brand is tangential related to Christmas, your ads don’t even have to sell anything.

Take, for example, the above spot for StubHub by Duncan/Channon, which finds the online ticket retailer’s “Ticket Oak” mascot screaming about a Christmas tree. You see, it doesn’t have to sell anything, and those kinds of spots are always a ton of fun to work on for agencies.

Is it a reference to 90s grunge stars, Screaming Trees? Is there compelling evidence that use of the “Ticket Oak” at any opportunity increases StubHub’s revenue? Is there market research that tells us people find talking tress weird, but in a funny way? We don’t know, and we don’t need to know. It’s Christmas, and this is about branding, not moving the needle. Credits after the jump.
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Pereira & O’Dell Reveals the Strange Lives of Scrabble Tiles

It’s always refreshing to see a TV spot that breaks the mold of how a certain type of product can be marketed. Not that I’m saying Pereira O’Dell and prodco Biscuit Filmworks’ newest campaign for Scrabble is revolutionary, but I think if we ever hear the phrase “board game ad,” most of us have an pretty set idea of what it looks like, no matter what game is being advertised.

Well, it looks like two things happened here. First, Pereira & O’Dell creatives decided to think quite far outside of the box and presented this concept to Mattel. Then, probably quite surprisingly, Mattel decided to approve a hell of a budget. Now, we have a campaign that take us away from the smiling family sitting around their dining room table and into the world of Scrabble tiles. And, if you ask them, there’s nothing quite like being “Blank.”

Because I’m a bit of a sad bastard mess this Friday afternoon, this “Lonely Q” spot struck a nerve with me. Let’s just say, I’ve never before sympathized with the letter Q for any reason. But, things seem to work out for him, and maybe all it takes to get back on your feet is the ability to sit down, meditate over a friendly game of Scrabble, and remember how to be yourself. But, then again, I’m probably reading into this a little too much.

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Gus Johnson Literally Explodes, Erin Andrews Just Stands There for Fox Sports

To be perfectly honest, I had no idea that Fox Sports covers college football throughout the season. However, a quick bit of research (Wikipedia) informed be that Fox actually has attained TV broadcasting rights for the Pac-10 last year. And, it would appear Fox’s marketing team has decided to make Gus Johnson the network’s star commentator for the NCAA season.

Now, I’m a little familiar with Gus, but I’ve never thought of him as a particularly excitable broadcaster. But, apparently Johnson is in the process of culminating this persona in two new spots from Fox Marketing and Biscuit Filmworks. The first, “Bomb Squad” (above), features Gus literally blowing up and possibly maiming a group of innocent passersby.

The second spot, “The Gus Effect,” aims to convince young males that watching a game commented on by Gus Johnson is a totally awesome experience, bro. Not only to you get cage dancers, you get new addition to the Fox team Erin Andrews staring at you while you cheer your team on. She doesn’t look a bit sad that ABC/ESPN decided not to renew her contract, does she? Credits after the jump.

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The Motorola RAZR: Droid Redux

If you watched football yesterday (which, considering all of the close games that were decided by a final drive, you probably should have), you undoubtedly saw the above Verizon spot for the new Motorola RAZR. “Wait, ‘new’ Motorola RAZR?” you might have asked yourself with a mouth full of beer and nachos. “Wasn’t that the phone I gave to that teenage scenester in exchange for a cigarette when the iPhone debuted like four years ago?”

Yes, Motorola’s latest product is turning back the clock a few years. If you can remember the days when the original Motorola RAZR debuted in early 2004, you’ll recall it was a mighty simpler time for cellphones. “Back in those days,” you’ll fondly tell your children, “a phone’s merit was decided by its slim portability, not the quality of escort service it could find you at last call.” Hell, even ask AgencySpy editor Kiran Aditham, and he’ll probably relate the fond memories he had with his Motorola RAZR, before the bespectacled turtlenecked modern-day Edison at Apple HQ created a product that immediately rendered Kiran and his mobile device of choice uncool.

But, as Motorola made known last month, the company is debuting a new, sleek phone that they’re calling the RAZR in homage to the company’s successful old model, one capable of running the new Android “Ice Cream Sandwich” OS debuting at the beginning of next year. As the new “Android king” is debuting for Verizon, the wireless providers’ AOR Mcgarrybowen was charged with making the above ad, which we’re being told is a “teaser” to a launch spot that will be unveiled this Wednesday on prime-time TV. So, dear readers, what say you? Is a phone chopping everything in its path in half going to garner the necessary buzz to challenge the iPhone? Will it at least get current Android users to switch phones? Credits after the jump.

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