Following a six week(+) hiatus I’ve decided ease myself in gently back to blogging by posting a music video and not much else. Had I posted this when I meant to (4 weeks ago) I’d probably have been the height of cool but now it’s *just* number one.
Bonus points for it being a cool, fan-made video though.
ADDED BLOG ‘HOOK’: currently posting from a hospital
This song, and video, is incredible. So incredible I’m posting about it without much justification at all. In terms of points of interests the ‘facts’ are these : it’s about three years old, it’s currently on its third incarnation (the above is second of three) and according to Radio One it’s been in the charts for seventy weeks. It’s currently sitting vaguely attractive at number twenty two. That’s pretty good going especially as it’s beating off much newer tracks by Little Mix, Girls Aloud and boremaster Ed Sheeran. Listen, enjoy and think about how much cooler than you the people in the video are.
Really want to learn to jump rope now.
So I know they aren’t identical in any way but these ads are basically the same, right? Or very similar, or just there’s something about them that calls the other to mind. It might be the buildup or the child presenting something that an adult has made to look like a child has made it at the end that does it. It all reminds me how good that John Lewis ad was and how totally unconvinced I am by the dad in the B+Q one. No way is that man a father.
There’s an American Express ad on the telly at the moment waxing lyrical about making the impossible possible. ‘How do you that?’, I hear you ask. Well my friends, the answer is simple, you make the impossible possible with money. It’s really that simple which makes me hope that I’ve really misunderstood what’s going on here. For a while I thought it was peddling some sort of AmEx concierge though I’m not sure that’s really any better: the message is still ‘throw money at something to sort it out’. The ‘return a loved one’ line seems particularly bad in this context and takes something that could have been really sweet, like if Royal Mail did it, into something cheap and nasty.
It seems that the ad has been on the go for a few years too. In their defense they’ve updated to voice so it’s narrated by David Tennant now. The same David Tennant who will use his voice for absolutely anything (I’m looking at you Virgin Media ad).
He does have a nice voice though.
To counteract the previous post I thought I’d write about (or just list) ads that are a bit more colourful. All of the videos below are visually stunning and will leave you asking how they managed to pull it off. Saying that, I warn you now that they all have horrendous backing tracks so put down the volume (and put on some Rihanna).
Don’t get the reference in the title? Then your knowledge of nineties music is bad(d) and you should feel bad(d)
PS if you want to be petrified of bouncy balls for the rest of your life watch the Sony Bravia behind the scenes
It may not be immediately obvious but the button to the right is the best thing since sliced pizza. If you’ve never seen it before it’s a fridge magnet, made for Dubai pizzeria Red Tomato, that sends you pizza at the push of a button. Yeh, you read that right, this button is basically The Jetsons* made real. The execution of this idea is so simple and successful that it makes you wonder why it wasn’t made sooner. To top (lol pizza joke) it all off, it’s based on some pretty incredible insights into the target market so it’s no wonder it’s been such a success.
Released in March this sexy little fridge magnet has been on the market for three months (ish) and caused quite a storm. The stats are particularly impressive with a 500% increase in orders. What’s really impressive is the 97, 133 requests from new customers, especially given that the button was initially designed for and distributed to regular customers. The 8million dollars worth of free media coverage from a budget of $9k is pretty astonishing and doesn’t even take into account increased sales revenue. It really is a bit of a stonker. Video case study below:
*that is, a strange vision of the future rooted in the past
Product testing has long played a vital role in the development of new, well, products. If Mad Men is anything to go by this is usually performed under strange laboratorial conditions and watched through a screen of one-way glass. Sometimes, just sometimes, a company clocks onto a great way to turn this process on its head. Below are few of my favourite examples showing the breadth of extreme product testing in advertising. The only thing that really holds them together is that the process of product testing, at least in part, is shown to the public. Other than that it’s a fairly diverse field.
The Oldest Example I Can Think Of That Is Actually Good – BlendtecBlendtec is probably the oldest and best known example of extreme product testing. Its dry tongue in cheek humour have made it a smash hit and one of the earliest viral video series. The general approach, in case you couldn’t work it out, is that if a Blendtec can blend, for example glow sticks, it should have no problem with your quotidian (?!) blending needs. Given the platform and nature of blended items I can’t imagine the blender buying demographic is particularly well reached but I can deal with that.
The ‘Is This Real Life?’ – Sony EricssonI can’t work out if it’s my naivety or whether I just want to this be real but part of me that can’t quite work out how much of this is real and how much is fake (or at least staged). In that respect it’s the Made in Chelsea of product testing videos (kill me, seriously, kill me) only less soul destroying. Another ‘if this can do x then it can do y’ style video series again with dry tongue placed fairly in cheek. Equal parts fun, information and good production values. Nice.
The Example What Has A Cat In – Columbia SportswearIt was only a matter of time until cats made their sneaky, aloof way onto the product testing ‘scene’. This series covers so many different grounds and products that it’s really hard to know what to say. I’ve selected this video as a example mostly for the tiny little cat jacket which ranks as one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen. Other videos in the series includes sweaty bread, a salad made using a shoe and a mesh tank top. I’m not even making that up.
The Morally Questionable One – Burger KingI’m still not sure exactly where I stand on this and that’s why it makes the list. Part of me loves this video – it seems like a great idea and something that must have been really interesting project, logistically, to have been involved with. The other, more pretentious, self-righteous, part of me finds it extremely exploitative and turns the Whopper into some sort of post-modern colonialism (I have an Arts degree, sue me). Love it or hate it, it’s definitely an interesting case of extreme product testing.
A short post because the video gives more information/insight than I ever could. The quick version is : library about to close > suggests slight tax increase > Tea Party goes mental > library starts negative campaign against itself > causes a storm > reveals the switcheroo > library wins vote > hurrah. It’s a really impressive, and risky, move from a brand/product/service/whatever that is fairly unexpected.
It’s the sort of campaign I love to see because it’s doing something new and exciting. So often when I tell people I want to work in advertising I get looks normally reserved for serial killers. Why do I want to make loud ads that interrupt their shows? I don’t. Why do I want to make crappy ads for magazines? I don’t. I don’t think anyone wants to do that, especially not me. If I work on even one campaign like this I’ll be happy. Clever, non-traditional initiatives for the win.
Great name too.
So, another one of those ‘haven’t blogged in a while’ posts. I’m on an internship and the minute don’cha know? It’s great but means that I have much less of my day for things like watching Adventure Time, internet shopping and blogging. I haven’t even had time to think about blog post ideas (that part isn’t strictly true). So I’m back to my old trick: an animal related post.
Imma keep it short and sweet because long posts are boring for me and you (pl.). Seeing as I’m becoming more and more obsessed with production (values) I can’t help but imagine what it would be like to have worked on this. There’s a definite feeling of organised chaos in the ad. This makes me imagine that the shoot itself was complete and utter chaos and after that you’re probably ready for anything. The results are absolutely astonishing and the team involved must have been equally proud and relieved to see it finished.
That’s kind of how I feel about having another post up at long last.