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Friday, January 30, 2009

The Horror of a Broken Escalator

h/t Weighty Matters

How do you get airtime for an ad that never airs?

Simple - just get the ad banned before you even have to foot the bill. At least, that's what PETA did with their "Veggie Love" ad.

Haven't heard of it? The concept is to get people to stop eating meat because vegetables are "sexier." How are vegetables sexy? The ad shows scantily clad women licking pumpkins and rubbing asparagus on their bodies, among other things. Definitely more attention-getting than their Sea Kitten campaign.

Hmmm . . . create an ad that's so racy it gets banned before it even airs, which gets even more attention than the actual ad would. I wonder if PETA planned it all along. What do you think?

~ Nicole

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

When a missing bug sinks your ship!

I'm sitting in a press conference at the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium right now learning about the sustainability of the world's largest producer of cork products. They came in with reams of publications, PowerPoints and brochures to demonstrate their committment to the environment and operating in a sustainable manner.

But something about all that paper was a bit disturbing.

On closer look, I noticed that their 95 page sustainability report -- while elegantly depicting their passion for nature, forests and sustainability -- was missing something -- something very tiny and easy to ignore, except for the content... No recycling bug.

Ooops. One of those pesky little details that sinks an exhaustive campaign's credibility. Maybe they were just trying to conserve ink by not including the bug...hmmmmm.


Hooray, Hope, Optimism, One for All, All for One and Yes You Can!

Driving into San Francisco you can't help but notice a series of uplifting billboards. First impression is that the Obama campaign is continuing their messages of hope and optimism. But no! Instead, it is the new Pepsi campaign exploiting the Obama brand. Or maybe you don't agree. I'd love to hear your comments.
-- Paula

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Air and Simple Gifts -- America's finest hour

It's ironic to me that in all the coverage of the inauguration, there's been little said about what I felt was the most powerful moment. Not the botched oath, the adorning crowds, Beyonce's At Last, not even Michele's dress. What impressed me as the most powerful expression of the best of America was the beautiful piece "Air and Simple Gifts" -- a remarkable tapestry of talent that blended genius from America's finest musicians, all representing different ethnicities, genders, religions and instruments. In my eyes, nothing could be more magically representative of America. Take a second to listen and watch ... it could just make you proud to be an American.


Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Art of Spin

There’s an e-mail going around the Internet, that isn’t true, but is a great example of PR spin none-the-less.

The way the story goes is that a professional genealogy researcher was doing some personal work on her own family tree. She discovers that she and Congressman INSERT NAME HERE have a great-great uncle in common that was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889.

On the back of a picture of the ancestor discovered during the research is this inscription: Remus LAST NAME, horse thief, sent to Montana Territorial Prison 1885, escaped 1887, robbed the Montana Flyer six times. Caught by Pinkerton detectives, convicted and hanged in 1889.

So the researcher e-mails the congressman for any additional information about their common great-great uncle.

A few days later she receives an email response with a “different” take on the ancestor.

Remus LAST NAME was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory. His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets & intimate dealings with the Montana railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to government service, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887, he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency. In 1889, Remus passed away during an important civic function held in his honor when the platform upon which he was standing collapsed.

Now that’s real SPIN!

- Ken

Friday, January 16, 2009

Would you eat a sea kitten?

The animal rights campaign group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, PETA, has decided to play off of people's awe of kittens by re-branding fish as “sea kittens” in order to discourage people from killing and eating them.

“Would people think twice about ordering fish sticks if they were called Sea Kitten sticks? Help us save fish by changing their names!” PETA writes on its Web site. More than 4,544 have already signed PETA's online petition.

An interesting rebranding case study, to say the least.

~ Nicole

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Clever way to promote frozen produce

Thanks to Fooducate, who across the pond in the UK that is promoting frozen fruit and vegetables. The British Frozen Food Federation has put up a giant ice wall in London with frozen produce suspended midair. The message to consumers - frozen is a great and healthy alternative for fresh produce.

A very "cool" way to get across a great message.

~ Nicole

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Making fast food even easier to eat

I wouldn't be surprised to hear that this has come up in a new fast food product brainstorming session before . . .

~ Nicole

Monday, January 5, 2009

Changing the Present

So my new favorite organization is Changing the Present. I'm sure you've seen their commercials recently. It's the one that looks like a jewelry commercial but instead of the husband giving his wife a new diamond ring, he gives her a polio vaccine instead. Their commercials are pretty clever and effective -- I went to the Web site.

The concept is simple, Changing The Present offers gifts that change the world. Browse causes to find gifts that make a difference, or search for your favorite nonprofit to make a donation. You can share these gifts with your friends and family, or use them for your own nonprofit giving. It's a great alternative to buying another bath set or novelty sweater -- just chose "Create A Card" from the shopping cart to send a personalized greeting card announcing each gift you donate in a friend's name.

My favorite thing is that they have gifts ranging from $1 to $10,000. You can really make a difference, no matter how much or little you're able to give.

~ Nicole