November 28, 2006

Consumer Generated Media

My neighbor’s truck looked a bit different this morning.
I don’t know much about him, but my opinion
sure is different today than it was yesterday.

Just goes to show that you can’t control what people say about you,
only how you treat them.

Pay it forward

My girlfriend got this cool direct piece in the mail last week.

If she opens a Citibank® checking account, they’ll deposit 25 cents into the account every time she uses her Citi® credit card. Although the legal says, “up to $250 per year.” So great deal, if you use your card 84 times a month. But is it enough to make anyone switch?
I've had a checking account at Bank at America for years, so I signed up for their Keep The Change™ program when it launched. They describe it as an electronic coin jar, which is catchy. Every time I use my debit card to spend $6.15 on a Large Wendy’s® Spicy Chicken Combo – add cheese/hold the mayo, BofA automatically transfers 85 cents (my change) from my checking account into my savings account. The kicker is they matched it 100% for the first 3 months and 5% a year after that.
Despite the deal, I stopped using my debit card for every purchase after a month because it was impossible for me to balance my checkbook with so many transactions (even with their painless online banking.) Plus I looked like an idiot every time I left a tip, because I felt compelled to add on an extra penny to force the bank to match 99 cents. But just for that month's charges plus using it sporadically the rest of the year, BofA deposited a matching $35.54 into my saving account.
Anyway, I’m sticking with my Discover Card, which gives me 1 percent back on every purchase. I average just over 20 bucks every month.
It may not be the best deal, but it’s become a habit over the years. And isn’t that awfully close to brand loyalty?

p.s. Room 116 had a post awhile back about WaMu’s awful 3 cent promotion. You can read it here.

November 27, 2006

False advertising

Q. Can I sue someone for lying in their ads? I've been using Axe but not a single hot chick has thrown herself at me.

A.Yeah, you'd probably get your name in the paper for suing Unilever (makers of Axe.™) But a lawsuit won't help you get laid.
It's an accepted practice for ads to use hyperbole for entertainment value. So instead, let's pretend you asked me how to meet girls.
It took me years to figure this out, but the trick is to talk to them.
I don't mean hit on them. Just say hello, ask a question and be interested in what they have to say. Most girls will be so pleasantly surprised that a guy is actually talking to them like a human being, instead of trying to pick them up, that they won't even mind that you really are picking them up. It's very zen. The only times I had any luck was when I wasn't trying so hard.
It's called "confidence" and it doesn't come in an aerosol spray.
(But you'd be surprised how far showering everyday and doing laundry once in awhile will get you.)

November 9, 2006

A very brief history of advertising manifestos

Back in the old days, all you had to do was pound your product benefits home by repeating the same jingle or slogan over and over and over.

In the so-called glory days, companies discovered creative work stood out. Then even more edgy stuff was required to bust through the clutter.

Today, customers seek out meaningful experiences that enhance their lives. If you want people to bond with your brand, you can’t force the relationship anymore.

November 8, 2006

Stop calling your ad a "film" and watch these instead

Saw Putney Swope for the first time last night. My only advice this week is to watch it. Shot straight up my top 5 list of favorite ad related movies:

1. Putney Swope
A black man is accidentally promoted to agency chairman and shakes things up. Satire at its finest. Plus, it's got boobies. (Bouncing, no less. And long before The Man Show put girls on a trampoline.)

2. Lost in America
Albert Brooks quits his agency gig to cruise in a Winnebago. Confirmed that I couldn’t possibly do anything else with my life besides try to create great advertising.

3. Advertising Rules!
An Art Director is torn between his work and his girl. (Sound familiar?)

4. How to Get Ahead in Advertising
Working in advertising drives an exec to grow an evil second head. This one is better than the bad pun in the title would imply.

5. Crazy People
The folks Dudley Moore hires out of the asylum are almost as sane as my coworkers at the Cavalry.

Dropped from the Top 5. Big
Yeah, I know Tom Hanks works for a toy company, but the scene when his new comic book idea gets killed due to office politics might as well be set in an agency.