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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

How to make the boring desirable

All you need is Catherine Zeta-Jones and a wonderful imagination. That's what Unilever had when they created a Hollywood style promotion called "Alchemist"for Lux Shampoo. Now, don't take this the wrong way, but how boring is shampoo? Now, I like clean hair as much as the next person, but when it comes to something as mundane as all this, you're looking at a major marketing challenge. I mean, how do you get their attention? That's why I like what Unilever's Asian arm decided to do, which was make an everyday brand adventuresome, exotic and simply wonderful. Which the filmmakers accomplished in spades with their seven-minute commercial. Who says shorter is better? And another thing about it, as the story unfolds, you are wowed and let in on the joke at the same time, which makes it all even better. Just another great example of what can be accomplished when you allow yourself to re-examine the same old, same old.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Something to Howl About

Last year a new client asked us to help them change public policy in Alaska regarding hunters who track and kill wolves from Airplanes. It is the only state in America that permits it, other places ban the practice as unsportsmanlike and barbaric. We were hired to make a video to make the case for changing the law. A great challenge, since wolves are up there with snakes and vampires as creatures of the night that terrorize and kill. So, the first thing we had to do was show the other side of wolves. They are smart, loyal, devoted to their families, and symbols of the natural world, untamed and free. We made our video and our client put it on the web. Recently they gave us this feedback:

Nearly ½ million people have seen the video

The video recruited Ashley Judd to the cause

The video has been made into 5 ads targeting Gov. Palin

Video and the ads raised the profile of the Alaska wolf campaign during the presidential elections

Coverage of the issue on:

Tina Fey on Saturday Night live twice

Bill Maher, CNN Larry King Live, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, NYT, Wash Post, AP, Politico and on and on and on

And Cine just gave it their highest award, the 2009 Cine Master Series Award in the Professional Non-Telecast Non-Fiction Division. That's alot to howl about.

One in 8 Million - New York Characters in Sound and Images - The New York Times

One in 8 Million - New York Characters in Sound and Images - The New York Times

Maggie Worth, the singing waitress, is just one of One in Eight Million people who make New York the greatest city on earth. She's also one of the people captured in the NY Times website devoted to profiling the men and women who inhabit that eccentric, charming and vital place that so many call home, New York City. Here at this site they answer the question, "who am I?" in their own words. Images from a professional photographer help bring their thoughts to life. Another innovative use of the web that I find fascinating. Maybe it's the voyeur in me, but I'm curious about people, who they are, how they live, what they find worthwhile, and how the world looks from their vantage point. And here it all is, featured as an innovative way of presenting the insightful moment. Featuring real people telling their stories. And a new one added each week.