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What Once Was Not Fresh is Now Still Entirely Unfresh!

October 9, 2009

The 90s sure were swell, but we need to move on with our lives. There is retrospective consensus that the Spin Doctors  suck terribly. You can’t play with Tamagotchi forever. Don’t be sad when DJs don’t follow “Rump Shaker” with “Woot! There It Is!” In a page turning set-back, MRI Starch Communications declared in AdAge that the best ad of summer 2009 is a ‘got milk’ ad.

The kind where a celebrity lip is covered with milk. 

Compounding the confusion is that the featured ‘celebrity’ could pass as ’90s B-listers Jennifer Tilly, Mary Lou  pre=”Lou “>Retton, or plausibly Sean Young. Adlulz must be stuck in some kind of space-time continuum. In the dimension we’re from, this was Best Of in 1995. Help me, people from the future-past!

This Ad Is Best Viewed in Netscape 1.0

This Ad Is Best Viewed in Netscape 1.0


Why Didn’t I Think of That part CCXCVII

September 25, 2009

Add this to the adlulz book of “Failures to Get There First” (i.e., Google Adwords would be chapter CCXCIV). Some incredible genius has compiled the top 50 favorite American Apparel ads. Enjoy while we burn with jealousy!


Bud Light Wants You to Take It in the Can

September 22, 2009

Like a persistent boyfriend, Bud Light won’t take no for an answer. At first adlulz was able to ignore this web-only “In the Can” ad –it was a narrow channel & one-stroke funny…

But this Sunday, “In the Can” inserted itself into the NFL broadcast & Billy Mays inspired DRTV “Tailgate Approved” (:29). Bold request, considering that’ll take three people breaking at least two of ten commandments to complete.

Branded Entertainment: Insurance sales & Randy Plumbers

September 17, 2009


Professor Plumber, in the office, with a wrench

Professor Plumber, in the office, with a wrench

From Adweek:

NBCU, American Family Roll Out Brand Series

Sept 15, 2009

NEW YORK NBC Universal has rolled out its latest stab at branded entertainment with a series that revolves around an understanding American Family Insurance agent.

The brand, along with Mindshare Entertainment, worked with NBCU Digital Studio to develop the series, “In Gayle We Trust.” The short-form vehicle marks American Family’s first stab at branded entertainment.

NBCU and Mindshare enlisted top-flight talent. Brent Forrester, a writer from The Office, penned “In Gayle We Trust.” The series stars Elisa Donovan — who appeared in Clueless and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch — as Gayle Evans, an insurance agent who serves as the de facto life coach for a town of quirky characters.

At NBCU, “top flight talent” is industry-speak for fresh off the WHO DAT? pile. A.D. Yancy apparently believes that her agents are ready stay on message while dodging come-ons from mustachioed plumbers:

The vignettes are often set in Gayle’s American Family office and touch on insurance topics. In “Gayle and the Plumber,” for example, she rebuffs the awkward advances of a plumber while pointing out that American Family provides identity-theft insurance.

Cameron Death, vice president, NBCU Digital Studio, said two more projects are slated for release over the next several months…

“We’re not putting digital content out and praying we can monetize it,” he said.

Mr. Death (!) has already monetized the content for NBCU by having AMF pay the bill. But the power of prayer may be needed to show the benefit to the insurance agents on the street. As campaigns go, it’s a tough sales meeting when you are told to hit the bricks armed with a benefits folder and a link to a branded webisode.

The AMF campaign microsite continues the disturbing marketing trend of incredibly wack flash games. There’s a driving game with “road cones” and a top speed of 45MPH instead of turbo buttons or sweet jumps. There’s a map game –ready to review your coverage yet?- that implores you to “Explore Maple Grove, filled with colorful characters…Find hot spots and unlock a hidden object related to a featured character specific to the week’s highlighted episode every Tuesday”

This week’s episode features a sexual harassment plumber, who we’ll assume is lurking in a virtual public bathroom somewhere in Maple Grove. Click to see his ‘hidden object’ if you are in to that kind of thing.

Teens Supes Keen on Ad Censorship

September 14, 2009

In the midst of a slow news day, consisting entirely of Kanye West VMA backlash tweets, comes detail on some very strange poll results and a deliciously hi-res gross out ad from the Health Dept. of New York.

pour some sugar on me

pour some sugar on me

According to the results of a recent Adweek/Harris poll, it’s the Nanny State mentality -not awesome TV- that has infected our nations youth.

Taking Aim (or Not) at ‘Junk-Food’ Ads

September 14 NEW YORK Though Americans’ appetite for “junk food” seems robust as ever, this doesn’t mean they’re happy to consume ads for such products.In an AdweekMedia/Harris Poll fielded in July, one-third of respondents said the feds should regulate (26 percent) or ban (8 percent) advertising for junk food, defined as including the likes of fast food, candy and soda. Forty-five percent said the government shouldn’t do anything about such advertising, and the rest were unsure.

Respondents age 18-34 were especially keen on such intervention, with 33 percent favoring regulation and 8 percent a ban on junk-food ads…

The 18 – 34 age demo, previously thought to be totally rad, has had enough of these zany burger ads. R.I.P. Little Lad.

CEO – “I Wanna Be in Pictures!”

September 11, 2009

ed whitacre
From Automotive News:
“Lee Iacocca scored big as a TV pitchman. Dieter Zetsche and Bill Ford didn’t.
Now Ed Whitacre, the U.S.-installed chairman of GM, is set to become the latest auto chief to blow his own company’s horn when he kicks off a TV ad campaign that will eventually focus on GM’s four surviving U.S. brands.”

Add this to the fail roll of CEO-centric marketing. Will a domestic auto buyer listen to a transplant CEO from AT&T? Iacocca excelled as a pitchman because of his success at Ford and his turnaround of Chrysler. Dave from Wendy’s worked cause he was a fat guy who knew his way around a burger.

The pure ego play comes with additional negative implications. It also makes for a snooze-a-roony of an ad campaign. Cue the CEO in front of a white backdrop or on a stroll through Central Park. It’s the safe play for the CMO, why should the boss care about ROI when his vanilla mug is plastered all over Times Square?

In a world where Ed Whitacre sells cars, Don Johnson sings.

Design my flavor or die tryin’

September 10, 2009
Mr. Cent is all up in your social media

Mr. Cent is all up in your social media

Vitaminwater added to the pool of regrettable facebook timesucks with the launch of a new a facebook application in which spammers (?) fbook friends (?) compete to create an energy drink and win a $5,000 prize. We trust the wisdom of crowds when it comes to political or financial outcomes, but handing over your fragmented flavor rotisserie to teh internets is a recipe for disaster. Does the world need another MangoBerry-CranMint-Guarana Fusion? Please add a splash of maltodextrin , L-carnitine or Polysorbate-80 for that extra kick. And in the strangest union since Soon-Yi & Woody or maybe Demi & Ashton, Carrie Underwood and celebrity bullet magnet 50-cent will be judging the entries. Adlulz suggests that Flavor Flav, a respected authority on both hype and flavor, should be partnered with country icon Dolly Parton for FlavaCreator 2.0. According to social networking marketing Dos & Don’ts, the downside for Vitaminwater is minimal. Our course, this is ripe for shenanigans by internet saboteurs 4chan to pick something crazy like ……. Lemon-lime?