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Posts Tagged ‘Craig Allen’

Venables Bell and Reebok Serve Up a Side of Bacon for the 2014 CrossFit Games

BACON

If you thought bacon was merely the provenance of artisanal hipsters and long past the food du jour, the fellows at Venables Bell & Partners, USA found a new way for client Reebok to reach pig heaven.

Since we tend to eat our bacon more for fun and less for sport, we were intrigued to learn that bacon is also a key snack for those on the Paleo Diet, which counts hardcore members of the  CrossFit community as disciples. We all know how great bacon tastes, but did you know CrossFit types post bacon-inspired selfies and memes touting its salty goodness as they put themselves through punishing workouts?

In honor of the impending CrossFit Games, Reebok thought it would be a fun idea to serve up some “Reebok Bacon” to the cult of CrossFit and the fans that cheer them on in the stands.

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Mediabistro Course

Presentation Writing: Design and Delivery

Presentation Writing: Design and DeliveryLearn how to use storytelling techniques and visual content to create and deliver successful pitches and presentations! Starting August 6, Amanda Pacitti, the manager of learning at Time Inc., will teach you the best practices for presentations, from using software like Prezi and Powerpoint, to writing your script, and using images, audio, and video to drive your points. Register now! 

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

W+K Brings Back Terry Crews, Sans Shirt of Course, for Digital Effort

W+K Portland have launched an campaign for Old Spice’s new line of electric shavers and trimmers (price range: $50-80), and have enlisted the help of a familiar face to help launch the new products.

Current Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Terry Crews, who helped introduce Old Spice Shave Gel last year with the spot “Baby”, returns to help market Old Spice’s foray into the shavers and trimmers world. The 45-second digital effort, “Get Shaved in the Face,” is reminiscent of Crews’ iconic work for the brand from years past, with a predictable amount of screaming and general mishigas. In the spot, Crews is in the process of shaving when a mini-crews realizes that he is a hair. As you might expect, things get pretty crazy by the conclusion of the spot, which you can watch for yourself above.

While the strategy might not have the shock value it did years ago, it makes a lot of sense to call on the iconic Crews for the introduction of a new product line. Among the products being introduced are: Old Spice Hair Clipper (“Like a lawn mower for your hair with 8 adjustable settings.”), Old Spice Beard and Head Trimmer, and Old Spice Shaver (“Like 3 smooth barbers for your face, this shaver features a triple-action cutting system with twin foils that shave off stubble and an integrated cutter that shortens longer hairs…”). Stay tuned for credits and a “Baby” refresher after the jump. Read more

W+K Launches the Only Interactive Site Where Hair Plays Huey Lewis Songs

W+K Portland has unveiled “The Power of Hair” for Old Spice, the “newest, never-been-done-before interactive digital experience.”

The new site is an extension of W+K’s “For Hair That Gets Results” campaign promoting Old Spice’s new haircare and styling products, featuring the same anthropomorphic hair, and comes on the heels of the “Boardwalk” and “Meeting” spots Old Spice debuted late last month. Visitors to “The Power of Hair are greeted by a testimonial video with a young man extolling the virtues of Old Spice’s hair products. Predictably, this includes attention from the ladies and respect around the office. Less predictably, this includes Huey Lewis songs. “When you’ve got great hair like this, you’d be surprised by how many Huey Lewis songs it can play on the piano,” the now bald man says.

Visitors to the site are then asked to pick a Huey Lewis song, and the hair (which by now has slithered off of the guy’s head) will play them on piano, occasionally adding in some percussion. You can pick from among 29 of Lewis’ greatest hits, including “The Power of Love,” “I Want a New Drug,” “The Heart of Rock n’ Roll,” “Bad is Bad” and “Doing It All for My Baby.” It’s a pretty absurd idea (and yeah, we’re pretty sure no one has done this before), but then this is the kind of silliness we’ve come to expect from W+K’s work for Old Spice and a fitting extension of the “For Hair That Gets Results” campaign, complete with a perfect title. Give “The Power of Hair” a try above or at the site, and stick around for credits after the jump. Read more

VB&P Crafts Inspiring ‘Look Inside’ for Intel

For the follow-up to the popular “Look Inside. Jack Andraka” video which garnered over 2 million views on YouTube, VB&P decided to tell the inspiring story of Erik Weihenmayer.

Erik is a mountain climber who has climbed the seven tallest summits on earth, one of only 118 people in history to accomplish this feat. That would be impressive enough, but Weihenmayer is the only person to do so while blind. Weihenmayer was born with retinoschisis and was fully blind by the age of 13. Three years later, at a recreational program for the visually impaired, he was introduced to rock climbing, and it changed his life forever. “I wanted my life to be an adventure, I didn’t want to be shoved to the sidelines and forgotten and just sit in a dark room listening to life go by,” Weihenmayer said. “Rock climbing for me was sort of a symbol that I could get to the summit of whatever I wanted to do, but I had to do it differently.”

In 2001, Weihenmayer became the first blind man to reach the top of Mount Everest, and by 2008 he’d accomplished the amazing feat of scaling the seven tallest peaks in the world. “In an ironic way, that thing like blindness or that barrier you face, if you attack it the right way, it can become a catalyst to moving yourself to a new place that you may not have gone to in any other way,” Erik said.

Erik’s story can be viewed online, in the above film directed by Christopher Hewitt of Knucklehead. Intel has also launched a social media program, where if Erik’s video is shared 2,900 times they will donate $30,000 to No Barriers USA, an organization offering “transformative experiences that allow people to embrace a ‘no barriers mindset’ and discover the potential that lies within themselves and the world.” After viewing Erik’s “Look Inside” video above, you can head here for the full story. Stick around for credits and “Look Inside. Jack Andraka” after the jump.

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Old Spice: ‘Anthropomorphic Hair Will Get You Laid’

W+K Portland has been very, very busy for Old Spice. First it was body spray with the “Smellcome to Manhood” campaign aka “Mom Song.” Then last week it was the triumphant return of Isaiah Mustafa and the “Interneterventions” surprise online campaign. Now, breaking the consistency of strange portmanteau puns is “For Hair That Gets Results,” marketing Old Spice’s line of hair care and styling products.

The first 30-second spot, “Meeting,” finds a studly studs mop of hair jump off his head and get a girl’s number. The lesson? If, young man, you pull this move, you’ll get a phone number that connects to a voicemail message that says, “Hey, I can’t come to the phone right now. I’m either studying for my master’s degree or having a tickle fight with my friend, Consuela. (Giggles.) Stop it, Consuela, I’m going to get you!” Yep, pretty cool.

The second, “Boardwalk,” teaches young men another valuable lesson. You see, a lady wants your hair to tell her if you can put in baby in her. You know, through the means of sexual intercourse or via a mechanical claw. Credits after the jump.

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NFL Season: Another Reason for Old Spice to Do Old Spice Things

There’s a very fine line between stupid funny and annoying, a line that Old Spice is willing to tightrope for miles and miles. Their “Unnecessary Freshness” campaign, created by W+K Portland, will hit screens starting Thursday night for the season opener. As you might expect, there will be plenty of shenanigans that don’t make sense. But, at least that’s the point.

Three new spots starring Denver Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker might make you shake your head, laugh, or both (there’s also a fourth spot featuring New England Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo, possibly a pity commercial since Welker darted for Denver). However, since each ad is less than 20 seconds, it’s easy to stomach the goofy jokes and images of lizards eating Welker’s legs. If commenters take to the site to rip W+K, Welker, football, me, AgencySpy itself, or a number of other things that exist, and therefore, should be ridiculed incessantly, they can hopefully agree that the running time is a plus. And, if you believe that a majority of people in America are stupid and these spots are stupid funny, then maybe W+K is onto something brilliant. Maybe.

Credits and some more unnecessary freshness after the jump.

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VB&P, Audi Chase the White Whale in ‘Ahab Redux’

In 2012, a creative director fell into Herman Melville’s 720-page trap and reimagined Ahab as a tow truck driver, madly chasing his white whale, an Audi Quattro. “Sometimes, I actually think it’s mocking me,” Ahab says in a gruff voice, anxiously twisting his thermos as he waits in the arctic tundra.

Said creative director then got distracted by Cetology, but has now resurfaced to produce “Ahab Redux,” in which, obviously, our automotive whale has yet to meet his driver. Ahab has retired on an island “most folks would call paradise,” but he can’t escape his all-wheel drive demon. “There isn’t a road on earth that can stop it.”

Thankfully this ad is a departure from the old winding-mountain-road glamour reel, and I appreciate the attempt at literary allusion. We’re all familiar with Moby Dick, whether we became obsessed like Ahab or SparkNoted its entirety. “Ahab Redux” is a bit of a cop-out due to its repetition, but the general idea probably gives Audi’s target affluent audience a twinge of self-satisfaction: “Oh, I know that story!”

Credits and original Ahab after the jump Read more

Audi Shows Us How ‘It Couldn’t Be Done’ Got Done

Audi has been busy lately, pumping out ads for their newest cars in sponsorship deals with Iron Man while simultaneously pitting past and present versions of Spock against each other. The automaker seems to be at it again, now with longtime agency Venables Bell & Partners, for a 60-second spot that traces back to the origin of the company. Retro footage of Audi’s founder, August Horch, and old-school automobiles plays for most of the spot, set to narration of the children’s poem It Couldn’t Be Done, written by Edgar Albert Guest. I guess Dr. Suess was busy.

By design, most of the commercial feels like it belongs to pre-1980, but the dissonance of the kid’s poem and the speeding-car shots strikes a cool chord. While previous car spots may be clever or topical when full of movie stars, this one stands out in a good way. It’s smooth and engaging, presumably, like a ride in a new Audi. Credits and a couple of :15 second spots after the jump.

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Audi, Iron Man Try to Make Commuting Sexier Than It Really Is

This 30-second spot, produced by Venables Bell & Partners, attempts to show the audience how billionaire superheroes commute to work. The average worker takes the bus, the train, maybe drives an average car. Tony Stark drives an Audi R8 supercar. Of course, he could also just commute in his Iron Man suit, which would make the R8 seem irrelevant, but that wouldn’t be very good Audi product placement.

You’ve seen this type of spiel before: “It’s never a bad day at work when your commute looks like this.” I’ve never been a fan of this pitch to consumers. After enough time, a car becomes a car. And if your job still sucks, if you have that pontificating boss, or you work till 9 p.m., going home in an R8 won’t stop you from hating a job (but it might help you attract women). And with a minimum MSRP of $114,000 on last year’s model, you’ll most likely hate your bank account afterward, too. But at least it looks cool, right? Credits after the jump.

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