“I know everybody means well, but I resent being called the ‘Original Mad Man.’ The 1960s was a heroic age in the history of art and communication—the audacious movers and shakers of those times bear no resemblance to the cast of characters in Mad Men. This maddening show is nothing more than a soap opera, set in a glamorous office where stylish fools hump their appreciative, coiffed secretaries, suck up martinis, and smoke themselves to death as they produce dumb, lifeless advertising—oblivious to the inspiring Civil Rights movement, the burgeoning Women’s Lib movement, the evil Vietnam War, and other seismic changes during the turbulent, roller-coaster 1960s that altered America forever. So, fuck you Mad Men—you phony, ‘Grey Flannel Suit,’ male-chauvinist, no talent, wasp, white-shirted, racist, anti-semitic, Republican SOBs! Besides, when I was in my 30s I was better looking than Don Draper.”
“The most interesting stuff [in product, packaging, and communications] is coming out of the interactive world, because you can tell a much longer story. There is nothing wrong with print, but it’s going to be two-dimensional.
Interactive has gone from zero percent of our business to 70 percent. That being said, my aesthetic is modern and beautiful. People with an interactive background have absolutely no idea how to make anything look good. People who can make stuff look beautiful have no idea how to do interactive. That’s where the rubber hits the road—to find people who understand both. It doesn’t happen everyday. I wish it would happen more. It’s starting to.”
-Neil Kraft, president and CEO of KraftWorks, in an interview with Jenny B. Fine published in WWD Beauty
Don’t mess with a man who has cyclonic suction on his side. James Dyson‘s global empire of highly engineered, sleekly designed sucking and blowing devices is taking on its chief competitor for the U.S. marketplace–in court. Dyson Inc. claims that Grand Rapids, Michigan-based Bissell Homecare Inc. has been falsely advertising its range of (less expensive) upright vacuums as containing technology that “captures over 99.9 percent” of allergens. Dyson has long boasted that its machines are singular in their “constant powerful suction, high dust removal, the ability to capture allergens, expel cleaner air, do not have dusty bags to empty and are certified asthma & allergy friendly by the Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America.” The company has gone so far as to trademark the phrase “asthma & allergy friendly.”
Dyson commissioned independent lab testing of the rival vacs and surveyed watery-eyed, sniffling consumers, while Bissell tried to clear the air by affixing stickers to its machines in an attempt to clarify that the ragweed and pollen trapping was actually done by filters, not the machines themselves. Dyson didn’t blink (or sneeze, for that matter) and is pressing its case in U.S. district court in Illinois. Judge Samuel Der-Yeghiayan cleared the way for the case to proceed in a summary judgment issued Friday. Will Dyson’s lawyers blow away the defense team? Will Bissell choke on its promises of wallet-friendly vacuums that improve respiratory health? Will the arguments of both sides suck? Stay tuned, floorcare fans.
Today in unreal estate news, Barbie is looking to sell her Malibu dreamhouse. The listing of the fictional pink palace–a bargain at $25 million–is Mattel’s way of launching “a year-long global brand campaign” that will follow Barbie on a worldwide hunt for new digs (may we suggest Vilnius?). “It wasn’t an easy decision for Barbie to put her Dreamhouse on the market, but this move marks an unprecedented opportunity for her fans to get an inside look at her dreamy home,” said Lori Pantel, VP of global marketing for Barbie, in a statement issued today.
Mattel tapped L.A. broker Josh Altman, who you may recall from Bravo’s Million Dollar Listing, to handle the fictional sale. Despite the abundance of hot pink scrollwork and Victorian flourishes, the listing describes the three-story manse as “clean-line[d]” and “contemporary.” Elsewhere, real estate euphemisms tout the Dreamhouse as “innovatively scaled” and with “a truly unobstructed view of the ocean” (it has only three walls). And while $25 million is steep for a one-bedroom, where else are you going to find custom Pantone 219C hardwood floors? Adds Altman, “This is the only home in Malibu with a self-flushing toilet and fireplace that crackles even when it’s not on.”
Our lovely chat with MDC chief strategist/CP+B chairman Chuck Porter winds down this week with a little insight and advice from the ad industry veteran. In the third and final part of our Media Beat interview with Porter, the exec reveals the keys to achieve advertising success (“Do something great and everything will take care of itself”) and what qualities he and CP+B look for in a strong job candidate. Truth to be told, for the latter, the agency’s criteria has remained the same since day one according to Porter, who tells us that to make the grade at CP+B, it takes “brains, talent, passion, curiosity and experience, in that order.”
This and all MediabistroTV productions can also be viewed on our YouTube Channel.
Part I | Monday: Chuck Porter on MDC’s Acquisition Strategy and Life with Miles Nadal
And so, our conversation with MDC chief strategist/CP+B chairman Chuck Porter continues. In Part II of our Media Beat interview with Porter, the ad industry vet explains why expanding his agency into New York City is not at the top of the priority list and how CP+B helped revamp the Domino’s brand. Porter says that from the beginning, Domino’s was aware that “they had a product problem,” so what was the agency’s message to the pizza chain? “Let’s be transparent.”
This and all MediabistroTV productions can also be viewed on our YouTube Channel. Be sure to check out Part III of our chat with Porter tomorrow.
Part I | Monday: Chuck Porter on MDC’s Acquisition Strategy and Life with Miles Nadal
In part I of our Media Beat interview with MDC Partners chief strategist and Crispin Porter + Bogusky chairman Chuck Porter, the ad exec (though he doesn’t really take to that term) discusses his holding company’s acquisition strategy and what it’s like working alongside MDC CEO Miles Nadal.
According to the ad vet, creativity is key when determining the right acquisition as he says simply, “My criterion is the work.”
This and all MediabistroTV productions can also be viewed on our YouTube Channel. Be sure to check out Part II and III of our chat with Porter tomorrow and Wednesday, respectively.
The flash-sale phenomenon—think Gilt Groupe, Rue La La, and Amazon’s on-fire MyHabit—has targeted most of its marketing to its channel of choice: the Web. But our friends at fast-growing Fab are rolling out their design-loving message to the non-clickable world with their first TV spot. The New York-based company, which is currently offering life-enhancing, moderately discounted stuff that ranges from Keith Haring prints to a grilling accessory known as a Double Hotdog Iron, has created “Touched” (below), in which a man awakes to find his apartment transformed into a fantasy land where everything that’s touched “goes from drab to Fab.”
Was Dr. Seuss a wartime propagandist? What highway runs throughout the U.S. but can’t be traveled by car? What exactly is “snarge”? Answers to all of these questions and more await on Seriously Amazing, a new website from the Smithsonian Institution (SI). Part of its first ever national advertising campaign, the online initiative seeks to broaden people’s understanding of all things Smithsonian through questions intended to spark visitors’–and would-be visitors’–curiosity. And while the Hope Diamond and Dorothy’s ruby slippers get their due, the factoids span the 19 SI museums (including the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York), nine research centers and the National Zoo.
Perhaps it’s the proliferation of crystal-clear HD televisions, the ascendance of 2012 Colors of the Year Tangerine Tango (Pantone’s pick) and Terracotta Rose (the ruddier hue favored by AkzoNobel), or simply a sign of the coming apocalypse, but companies of all kinds are suddenly enamored with the same vibrant pitchman: Roy G. Biv. Fresh from the “full spectrum”-themed TED Conference, we can’t help but notice that it’s color, color, everywhere on TV commercials, whether they’re touting pricey accessories, cheap n’ cheerful throw pillows, or the newest services of a big-box retailer. In these three rainbow-rific spots, color gets downright aggressive: running amok as a boldly costumed Parkour troupe for Target (“Color Changes Everything”), as “Sans Cans” paint flowing freely in the streets for Lowe’s, and slapping unassuming headphone-wearers upside the head for Beats by Dr. Dre. The take-home message: resistance is futile, color is coming for you, probably in the form of a limber European gentleman dressed in head-to-toe cyan.
NEXT PAGE >>