Please don’t tell me…

As I’ve been living in London my eyes have opened up to some horrible tube advertising. Big and small formats, but none of them make any sense. So I’m going to start a miniseries of fun/weird/bad London tube advertising.

First up is this pretty stupid breast cancer awareness ad. I think you can tell why it’s stupid, if you can’t see it read on below the picture.


Well if you didn’t see it, here it comes. The ad is stupid because they want you to know how to tell if you have breast cancer – but don’t tell you that. Instead they want you (in a place with 0 reception) to send a text message to get the info.

I know tracking and statistics are great, but actually getting your message across and save lives might have a higher priority, don’t you think?

Even if the goal is to get people to have a physical product delivered we still want the basic information. Don’t leave us hanging and then demand a pretty big effort for finding out the answer…

Meganews Magazine Kiosk

I think this is freakishly smart.


You might not be able to tell from the picture, but this is a magazine kiosk that prints on demand. Instead of printing tons of magazines that gets sent back every month, the magazine you want gets printed on the spot.

With the technology we have nowadays this is a no-brainer. Why would we waste more natural resources, cut down more trees, use more paper than wee need?

I see this as an amazing arena for the future. The promotional offers that could be combined with this are vast. Buy a Coke and get 25% on the magazine, BUT it’ll be filled with Coke advertising as well.

The lenticular boy.

The talk of the town last week was, for anyone who might’ve missed it, a lenticular poster against child abuse.

Lenticulars are nothing new, but this era is different. What used to be a slightly awkward toy has now evolved into something sleek and usable. With the change of the world surrounding it we will see it used in many more places. Not only because of how much better the technology has got, but also because we live in a time where we expect more than a still image. We want the change to happen before our very eyes, not just imagine it. Or just target advertising to kids, next time it might be for a less noble purpose.

As a reminder the message doesn’t have to be as dreadful as this ad, I wrote about a much nicer one last summer.

The Christmas Transfer Window

Saw this lovely little ad outside the merchandise store at Emirates Stadium. And since I’m an Arsenal I couldn’t help falling in love with it :)

How bad’s your breath?

Realluy cool flashmob for TicTac. I think involving this many people in an ad stunt, really shows dedication and belief in an idea. There’s nothing half assed about this, they went all out, and that’s the key to flashmob success.

Wanna play doctor?

Augmented reality is here to stay; sadly most of the things we’ve seen so far are gimmicks. But there are some amazing examples of how to use it:

The wonderful world of Science

These Science World ads were made by Rethink in Canada. They’ve been all over the net by now but I thought I’d give some comments to them. Trying to make out which are good, which are superb, which are in between and why I think so.

The really good ones use the medium to its fullest potential. The make us turn our heads, and maybe even run after.

The inbetweeners, stand out as installations. They ‘refunny and make people curious, but placing something where it doesn’t belong is easier than finding that special opportunity we saw above.

I still like these very much, they play on curiosity and the human urge to know and learn. They’re just not as cool as cool as the above ones, they’re “just” regular billboards.

All in all I can’t but love these ads. I’m far from alone to think so. These billboards went viral, VIRAL BILLBOARDS! And it wasn’t just one of them, it was the whole series, that’s impressive.

Rethink have also done some great TV ads for science world that you can see over at Copyranter on Buzzfeed . I’ve written about at least one of them, Airport Security.

Silver + Partners, wow!

Your first love is always special. It’s likely that it won’t feel as good the second time, it’ll still be love but you’ve built up a tolerance of sort. Apparently that is not true for me when I fall for ad agencies. I haven’t felt like this in a year, when I found the works of Dare’s Vancouver office.
Now I have found something in the Big Apple. The agency isn’t big, but the ideas and concepts are.

Ben & Jerry’s
These campaigns have a hard focus on social media and small budgets. But the use of both Twitter and Facebook is phenomenal.

Fairtweets –Twitter

I think this is a very clever idea. I don’t usually like ideas that can work on a number of brands. But in this case I don’t see that problem. Instead I’m envious of the guys who came up with this idea. Being first at an idea that could’ve worked for a number of charitable organizations. I think that’s something impressive, especially when the idea is as good as this.

Wanna spoon? – Facebook

It’s a very clever insight about how Facebook campaigns should work. What I like so much about this campaign is that it’s actually social. It’s not just a clever viral ad and a “share on Facebook”-button attached. This is a campaign that helps you connect to lost friends. It’s not focused on mass sharing, but the one-on-one sharing, which of course eventually leads to mass sharing – but it’s not the focus. Ben & Jerry’s helps you start a dialogue with old friends. Branding themselves not so much as a cool brand, but a brand that’s involved in and care about their customers’ relationships.

CarMax – Super Bowl TV-spots

The top one is my favorite, easy choice. It’s visual, nicely edited and every time the camera cuts I chuckle a little. But the second ad is not as good. On the idea/concept level it was probably as good as the first. I think it’s clever, it gets the point across, but the actor is neither fun nor believable. All the ingredients are all there but something’s wrong with the recipe.

Ultimat Vodka
The guerilla ad for this brand got a huge media spread. But the same insight was also used for prints, outdoor and banners. It’s also cool to see how differently the tone of voice is compared to the CarMax ads. They’re both humorous and from the same agency but hits completely different target groups.

Window Cleaner – Guerilla/Event/Real Life Interaction

If your target group is rich people who work all the time, you know where to find them – at the top floors. So if they won’t come to you, why not go to them? Point out their lack of social life, and how little they see their family. Show your brand as a solution, the balancer of their life.

Get Offline – Banners

Banners are a hard medium to work in, the formats are weird if you’re used to print or TV and no one seem to notice them. So for a banner to be visible, there has to be an idea. Something that can catch us off guard, there is no other way past banner blindness. And I think the rich-media-use in this ad does just that. It’s the greatest display ad I’ve seen since I first saw Zappos streaker. But this ad have a harder task, it’s confined within that small box and can’t run all over the place. Big props on the media buy as well, bullseye on strategy.

The campaign also came with print ads, and tbh… these are kind of harsh, but I still like them. It hits you were it hurts, but also offers a solution (of sort) to your problem.

From what I can find at AdAge, the agency is 35 employees small. So thank all of you at Silver + Partners, you turned the start of my week into a weirdly emotional one. Filled with a mix of envy and adoration. This is the type of advertising I want and hope to do in my future career.

The world’s most progressive church!?

Some companies make statements for a better world. Most companies’ stand by human rights and, since an Inconvenient Truth came out, the environment. But some take it a step further. Some companies make modern statements, statements that are far from obvious in many parts of the world. These companies could be Manhattan Mini Storage or Kraft Foods Oreo, who both support gay rights. But who would’ve thought a church would be next to follow?

I like bold statements. But it’s not often I see them from churches. And the few times I do it’s mostly about how gay people are Satan’s creation. So big props to Whybin\TBWA and St Matthews: Whybin\TBWA for the superb pun and to St Matthews for standing up for love.

From what I’ve heard it’s not the first time they do great ads. So please – give us more!

Brain Freeze time!

The people at Leo Burnett Melbourne have created some great advertising for 7-Eleven and their Slurpee over the last few years. Here come a few of them.

Bring Your Own Cup Day

I think that giving stuff away for free is the lamest marketing trick in the book. So if you want to do that, you have to make it special. Like they did here. For this campaign it was about creativity. And they didn’t give things away for free, just cheap (depending on the “cup” you brought). To me the creativity is the nicest touch to this campaign. Smart and funny people could actually pull off really fun things. It was the type of ideas that would normally start with: I wish I could/If only/Why can’t I… etc. For many, this was a dream scenario come true. It would’ve been for me as well, and I’m not even a Slurpee fan.

Official Sport of Slurping
So you’ve gone and made yourself a national holiday (of sorts) for your brand. What more can you do? You could get the devouring of your product classified as a sport. That’s what Leo Burnett and Slurpee had done before they created the BYOC-day.

Check out the case video at Leo Burnett’s website.
(Can’t find the video anywhere embedable)

You can check out the Facebook page for the campaign. Sadly the project seems to have been abandoned after succeeding to make it a sport. The website is down and the Facebook page is dead.

The Big Slurpee
Apparently Australians like to visit big things during their vacations. They’re some kind of national symbols, weird monuments of everything from ostriches to bananas. I don’t know how big of an impact they actually have on national culture. But who wouldn’t want to create one? And what company wouldn’t want a giant replica of their product? A replica that people could visit, a tourist attraction that they’d take pictures of and share with friends – for a long time in the future. I think that’s a great enough reason to create an 11 meter high Slurpee.

Now… how do I bring this to BYO cup day?

Check out the case study here.

Facebook likes might not say much. No one knows how much they’re worth, and I don’t think anyone ever will. Still it’s very impressive to rack up over 300’000 likes in a country with 21 million inhabitants, especially if you’re a brand within a brand (7-Eleven in this case). But with advertising like this no one is wondering how it happened.