New MacBook Air ad hews closely to Apple advertising script

By Elena Malykhina on Tue Oct 26 2010

I think, by now, we've all come to recognize Apple's ads: The featured device against a solid background, a few moments of music followed by a showcase of the device's best features, and a closing statement that leaves you curious even if you're not an Apple fan. Behold this ad for the new MacBook Air from TBWA's Media Arts Lab. The ad opens with a shot of a closed laptop and a piano solo that builds as the voiceover says: "Everything we've learned has come down to this." A hand flips open the laptop sideways to reveal its slim form. "The next generation of MacBooks," the ad concludes. The spot may not seem to say much, but it accomplishes the main goal, which is to reveal the new model and intrigue consumers enough to make them do their own research. While some bloggers have dubbed the latest MacBook Air a larger, faster version of an iPad, "next generation" refers to the new 11.6" and 13.3" models, which reportedly, will be sold at lower pricepoints ($999-$1,599 versus $1,500-$1,800 for older models). The products are also said to have improved capabilities from the first generation of MacBook Airs. And with other big news coming from Apple, including the Lion operating system and the Mac App Store, the ad couldn't be more timely.

JetBlue harasses folks on the ground, promises not to in the air

By Elena Malykhina on Fri Oct 15 2010

JetBlue is on cloud nine this week. With creative juices flowing thanks to its new agency Mullen, the carrier has debuted videos on YouTube that show how silly typical airline rules would seem on the ground. In this video, dubbed "Glass Half Full," a New York City street vendor tries to sell half a can of soda in a plastic cup with ice to customers. Expecting a full, unopened can, the pedestrians (who were captured on a hidden camera) express their dissatisfaction. One woman goes so far as to ask if there's something mentally wrong with the vendor. The point of the video? To show that while this stuff might be the norm for airlines, they don't fly on the ground. JetBlue slots the promotional message in at the end: "Get the whole can of soda and free unlimited brand-name snacks." The campaign is Mullen's first work for JetBlue, and includes other videos that show more ridiculous scenarios. See those after the jump.

Continue reading "JetBlue harasses folks on the ground, promises not to in the air" »

UPS loves logistics so much, it's taken to dancing in the streets

By Elena Malykhina on Wed Oct 13 2010

UPS loves logistics. You already know this if you've seen the shipping company's new TV spot (above) from Ogilvy, set to the tune of "That's Amore." But they took it further. Recently, the company hired a dance troupe, dressed them in UPS uniforms, and had them do a little logistics dance in Chicago—captured in the video below. At the end of the video, the dancers use their boxes to spell out "We [heart] logistics," which is the theme of the new campaign. Hokey? Perhaps. But I'd say UPS is getting its message across loud and clear. And it's not an easy task to make logistics seem like fun.

Buzz Lightyear, Alice in Wonderland lead 2010 Halloween outfits

By Elena Malykhina on Thu Sep 30 2010

Buzz

The spookiest day of year, Halloween, is only a month away, which means costume shopping is in full swing. While traditional costumes are still a popular choice, Hollywood-inspired characters are expected to make an appearance at parties everywhere, according to the 2010 Top Costumes survey, released this week by the National Retail Federation. Buzz Lightyear, Harry Potter and Alice in Wonderland made the list, while the unbranded witch, vampire, pirate, nurse and wench, respectively, are the top five picks for adults. That's not surprising, since classic costumes are always easier and cheaper to obtain. In fact, the NRF said that while more people than ever plan to dress up for Halloween, they'll be looking for ways to save money in doing so. The leading costumes for kids are generic princess, Spider-Man, witch, pirate and Disney princess. "Aiming to attract shoppers of all ages, retailers have already begun stocking their shelves with a wide variety of costumes," per the NRF. And let's not forget our furry friends. You'll see plenty of pets dressed as pumpkins, devils, witches and hot dogs. I've already seen several retailers capitalizing on that four-legged demo.

Pizza Hut spots to show what fine, fine people its employees are

By Elena Malykhina on Tue Sep 21 2010

Pizza-hut

Pizza Hut wants the public to know that its employees are quality citizens who not only enjoy working for the chain but also consume its food. In an effort to spread the message, Pizza Hut has kicked off a campaign that features real employees chosen through video submissions. Eight made the cut for having the best personalities and for telling their "favorites" story—in which they talk about which Pizza Hut offering they like the most. The effort is from The Martin Agency, which created its first campaign for the pizza brand back in February, featuring customers talking about their own pizza favorites. Seems Pizza Hut is sticking to the theme of testimonials, while just adding employees to the mix. But the chain also could be alluding to the criticism that rival Domino's faced last spring when two employees were caught doing disgusting things with Domino's food in a YouTube video. It's the oldest marketing tactic in the book, although Pizza Hut took the diplomatic approach and didn't attack any competitors directly in the new campaign.

Do you like Corona Light beer? No, do you really, really like it?

By Elena Malykhina on Fri Sep 17 2010

Corona-light

Corona Light wants to become the most liked light beer in America, and it's tapping into the power of social networking to make that dream a reality. The brand recently kicked off its first digital effort, calling on consumers to visit its Facebook page and click the "like" button. Easy enough, right? Fans are then invited to upload their photos to the page, and the photos will be projected on a 150-foot-tall digital billboard in Times Square. According to parent company Crown Imports, the campaign is an opportunity for Corona Light to engage with consumers in a new way, while offering a pretty appealing incentive to participate. (Who wouldn't want to be the star of a billboard ad in Times Square?) The last time I checked, more than 10,700 people "liked" Corona Light on Facebook. Seems the incentive really is working.

Hamsters in Kia Soul commercials inspire 'Hamstar' clothing line

By Elena Malykhina on Thu Sep 2 2010

Hamstar

You've seen them on TV, and now you can roll in style like the hamsters in the Kia Soul ads. The carmaker and D&G (that's David&Goliath, Kia's ad agency, not Dolce & Gabbana) have rolled out a line of streetwear clothing inspired by the furry rappers. Called Hamstar (yes, ham + star), the line includes T-shirts, hats and hoodies. The clothing doesn't feature the actual Kia characters; instead, it sports a simple design and the word "Hamstar," just like a hoodie worn by one of the hamsters in the car ad. At the moment, the selection, offered online at HamstarClothing.com, is a bit limited. I'm sure it won't be long, though, before all the cool kids are wearing it. Well, I don't know that. But it is a clever way for Kia to cash in on its highly successful ads.

Playtex brings 10 ordinary women to New York for bra makeover

By Elena Malykhina on Thu Aug 19 2010

Playtex has touched on a sensitive subject for women in a series of new webisodes dubbed the "Playtex Bra Makeover." The clips—two of which have gone live so far—feature 10 women who all won a trip to New York City to meet with style expert Alison Deyette. Each woman faces some kind of bra problem. Towanda, for example, a single mom from Virginia, has "droopy boobies." (Hey, she said so herself!) The goal of the videos? To show that the majority of us (women) are wearing the wrong size bra or the wrong type of bra (lacking support, uncomfortable straps, you name it). Ultimately, Deyette helps the women find the right fit, and the videos conclude with the women thanking Playtex for a successful bra makeover. The effort is reminiscent of Dove's "Campaign for Real Beauty," which featured actual women in ads, not models. Seems Playtex is targeting all shapes, sizes and ages. Take that, Victoria's Secret!

DirecTV ad exposes seamy underbelly of NFL fan rivalries

By Elena Malykhina on Mon Aug 2 2010


It's that time of year again. DirecTV is trying to get football fans to sign up for its "NFL Sunday Ticket" package, which carries a steep price of $299.95. The satellite service provider is reportedly spending $100 million on an ad campaign promoting the plan, which lets fans watch NFL games not available through local affiliates. The TV spots, from Deutsch, New York, center on the fact sports fans can enjoy watching their favorite teams no matter where they reside. One ad, "Cheeseheads," shows a Green Bay Packers fan talking in a Fargo-like accent to a priest on her couch at home. She tells the priest that her husband is upset because the new neighbors from San Francisco have DirecTV and watch the 49ers every week. She reveals that she has sent the neighbor a cheese platter to welcome him. The priest seems to think she's a kind woman, but doesn't know that she spelled out the word "dirt bag" in cheese. In another ad, a trophy wife from Dallas vents her anger at a local Redskins fan by letting her dog chew up his welcome mat, knock over the flowers and pee on the rug. In still another, a pair of "Masshole" Patriots fans sneer at a local follower of the Dolphins and toss some snow at his door. Can't we all get along?

Michelin Man continues battle with not-so-scary villains

By Elena Malykhina on Tue Jul 27 2010

Michelin has dreamed up yet another adventure for its brand mascot, the Michelin Man. The tire company this week unveiled a third TV spot as part of its ongoing global campaign, dubbed "The Right Tire Changes Everything." In April, Michelin introduced a TV spot from TBWA\Chiat\Day showing the Michelin Man battling an "evil gas pump." This time, the character battles a "hungry road" that requires drivers to constantly buy new tires. Using similar fast-paced animation as previous spots, the ad shows the pneumatic dude coming to the rescue and supplying drivers with Michelin's HydroEdge tires. Maybe it's just me, but the latest ad seems to be more lighthearted than the previous one. Sure there's still a villain involved, it's just not as terrifying as the "evil gas pump." Perhaps Michelin is just rolling (pun intended) with the times, and by that, I mean an improving economy.


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