Archive for June, 2009

Back to smoking for a minute

June 30, 2009

I love the Blog, Found in Moms Basement. If you’re in advertising you should go there and visit the humble beginnings of your industry. Since I wrote about Obama’s smoking habit, I found some interesting ads about cigarette brands I’ve never heard of and some enticing methods to lure you into lighting up!  Check it out.  

PS    If California gets to tax marajuna, who’s the lucky agency that will get to do THAT campaign??

images You Bet I Do!

Advertisements

Jackson’s Suzuki Spot

June 28, 2009

So, in keeping with what I am supposed to be writing about, I looked for a connection to Michael Jackson and advertising….beyond the Pepsi stuff we all know about.  (True Fans know every detail. I’m not a true fan, but respect his talent and the music.)   But I had not seen this spot….the poor girl struggles to keep up with Michael’s moves.  

Oh yeah, advertising.

June 27, 2009

I’ve been so caught up in the interesting news du jour, I forgot I’m an AD chick, not a NEWS chick.  So, how about this for small town clients?   After years of good work, a seemingly solid relationship and positive results, the client calls me up and says, “We’re going in a different direction”.  I say, “So you’re firing me?” “Well, we’re just going in a different direction.”  Uh-Huh.  The PR Bitch in a MUCH larger market must have a tongue piercing…but I digress.  (Hey, I have SEEN her work – it sucks. Seriously average. Plus, we never got invited to compete with the new project and he let it go on for months, leaving us to wonder what the hell was up. Poorly handled, Mr. CEO)

So I move on.  Clients do come and go.   THEN, I get a Facebook Friend Request…from this guy.  Are you serious?

Yeah, I’m bitter.

imagesIf I get one, can I keep the business?

E-mails are forever

June 26, 2009

My old boss and mentor used to tell me: Write the letter, then tear it up. Same holds true for emails.  How many times have you been so pissed you wrote the most vitriolic letter, put the stamp on the envelope (or had your finger on the Send button) and then thankfully came to your senses.  That shit’ll come back to haunt you…every time.

The Governor of South Carolina is realizing this now.  His behavior is certainly not surprising…politicians screw around all the time…on their wives AND their constituents.  But what IS interesting is actually reading the content of correspondence between he and his Lady Love.  Is NOTHING sacred?

Check it here at Gawker.  Here’s a snippet of one of his many now-public emails written to his Argentina Sweetie :

You have a particular grace and calm that I adore. You have a level of sophistication that so fitting with your beauty. I could digress and say that you have the ability to give magnificent gentle kisses, or that I love your tan lines or that I love the curve of your hips, the erotic beauty of you holding yourself (or two magnificent parts of yourself) in the faded glow of the night’s light – but hey, that would be going into sexual details …

“Sexual details”?  Are you kidding me?  Dude, when you are the Governor, you say this shit, you don’t write it.   

images-4Why is this man smiling?

Need a light, Mr. President?

June 25, 2009

So what if President Obama sneaks a cigarette now and then?  All the fuss and controversy his honest admission has raised is crap.  You try being the leader of the free world and perfect at the same time.  He totally deserves a moment of privacy and a puff.  The guy’s under a lot of stress.

Tobacco’s been around for thousands of years. And it was probably good you.  There were no greedy tobacco companies loading it up with poisonous chemicals. After a tough day chasing down buffalo, the spiritual and calming properties were well-deserved.   Then there’s the romantic folklore:  

One Huron legend tells how, long before the coming of the white man, there was a great famine over the land. All the tribes came together in a council and called the Great Spirit Manitou for help. In answer, a beautiful and naked girl descended from the clouds. Leaning on her palms, she sat on the ground before the people and announced that she was sent to bring food. This said she returned to the sky. Where her right palm had been, corn sprouted, and where her left palm had been, potatoes. But from where she sat tobacco appeared.      AH HA!  So that’s how it started!

And it seems we’ve been inhaling all kinds of stuff….not just dried leaves. A nod to James Leavey for the following: According to the Roman scholar, Pliny the Elder (23-70 AD) in `Naturalis Historiae’, the inhalation of smoke from burning hare’s fur was prescribed as an exportant, the smoke from burning goat’s horn used to diagnose epilepsy, and, for consumption, smoke inhaled (through a reed) of dried dung from an ox fed on grass.

The history of tobacco is pretty interesting.  Read more about it here. And leave Barack alone. If he can’t have a Marlboro Light, maybe they can burn some rabbit fur for him to sniff…but then PETA would get pissed.  You can’t please everybody. Why even try?

images-3 Got a light?

No Southern Chicken

June 23, 2009

I leave town for a weeks vacation and all kinds of crap happens. Letterman makes Palin mad, Iran takes another step closer to hell, and God knows all the Twittering I missed.  It was another great Harley trip, 2500 miles in 6 1/2 days, a little extreme, but fun nonetheless. Dodged all the rain, too. Did a lot of thinking and a lot of not thinking.  And no, my ass is NOT sore.  His, however, is.  HA!

I thought maybe the South might be a good place to relocate, but I don’t think I can live down there.  There were two churches on every block, and the drawl made my skin crawl. They said stuff like:

If you wanna nuther bees-kit, you just let me know.

I don’t know what tyme zone we’re in. Carl, do you know what tyme zone this is?

You’re in a dry county, darlin’.

All our liquor stores close up at 7.    

Yikes. I’m sure they’re all lovely people, but I think I better head west.

images-1

It’s a whole different world down there.

I’m goin’ to Carolina….

June 12, 2009

…no really, I am! It’s time to get the hell outta here, apply my fake tattoos, slip into a doo-rag and two wheel my way to North Carolina. Raleigh-Durham, anyone? Once I sell the agency (to some lucky guy or gal out there-are you the one?), perhaps I’ll find my second career there, learn to say “y’all” and wipe BBQ sauce from my chin.

Nah.   See you next week!

images “Say nice things about me…I’m gone.” 

(That’s the very last line from the James Taylor Song-Love it!)

A Spam Comeback?

June 9, 2009

I’m anxiously awaiting the new television commercials for America’s Favorite Meat in a Can, SPAM, done by BBDO in Minneapolis.  (I think their web site must be under construction-they should call me.) While I wait to see the new culinary creative, I decided to do a little Spam Research.

According to the official Spam web site there are 13 varieties. Hormel introduces the sweet, spicy pink “meat” in 1937.  Edward R. Murrow mentions Spam for Christmas dinner in 1942. In ’46, the Hormel girls make the scene. Spam with Cheese Chunks make an appearance in 1971, and in 1991, you can order official Spam merchandise from the catalog. You know it’s relevant when Spam gets a spot in the Smithsonian. There’s Spam with Bacon, Spam Lite, Spam Hot Dogs and Spam spreads and Hickory Smoked Spam.  Spam Festivals, Spam Fan Clubs, and Spam Recipe Contests. (Take a deep breath here) You can buy Spam T-shirts, hats and magnets, Spam Salt & Pepper shakers, steins and shot glasses.  A Spam joke book and thimble, too. There’s even a Broadway Show and Spam Music.

It seems that more than 5 billion cans have been produced since 1937. In America, roughly 3.8 cans of Spam are consumed every second each day – 228 cans per minute, 13,680 cans an hour. (Somebody check my blood pressure, my sodium level feels a little outta balance.)

Given these lofty numbers, BBDO better be showing us something pretty good.

imagesThanks to Brand Professionals for the heads up…can’t wait to see the reinvention.

Really Dead on Facebook?

June 6, 2009

Because we live in an age where everyone can know everything about everyone in a matter of seconds, the human race sickens me more than ever.  So what’s with the demented genius who posts a photo of a corpse on Facebook?

I need to quit reading the news….and get off Facebook.

images

Small might just be the new big

June 3, 2009

It must be nice at those big agencies, I think.  To have teams of writers, planners,  executives, designers, divisions, groups, juniors, seniors, vice-presidents, CFO’s, CEO’s, COO’s, principals and the like.  But I think smaller shops have become increasingly popular in the era of the Big Dumb Agencies, as dear George Parker describes them. I have a few suspicions why:

1.  Nimble.  Because we don’t have a lot of people to get in the way of progress, we can turn on a dime for a client. They like that.

2. Loyal. Genuinely and to a fault. We need our precious clients to be successful, or else we’ll cease to exist. So we tend to act like we’re their partner.  And really, we are.

3. Honest. Maybe too much at times. The rest of my team jokes about how “blunt” I can be with a client. Hey, if their hours suck, their staff is surly, the inventory dated, or the prices too high, someone needs to tell them…might as well be a “partner”.  I care.  (See Number 2.)

4. Efficient. Time is money.  We’re small and don’t have the luxury of waxing poetic about a piece of creative for months.  We study the issues and then work hard to sell something. Isn’t that what advertising is supposed to do, after all?

5. Hungry.  We don’t eat till someone sells something. And we all know it, so we take nothing for granted.

6. Cost-conscious. Small agencies “feel the pain” of our small clients.  We have to make money, but we don’t nickle and dime a client for every breath we take on their behalf.

7. Ego-less. Well, somewhat. If you think you’re the smartest one in the group, then you can’t work in a small shop.  Arrogance just doesn’t work.  Collaboration does.

There is no corner on creativity and problem solving. The layoffs are many in big agencies, and sadly, some iconic firms are closing their doors. All the while, here in Hooterville, we are busy, enjoying the creative process, raising our families in a sweet small town, designing, writing, producing and living.  Sure, we endure the same client crap, just on a smaller scale. And true, we’re not creating the image for a big national brand where there is so much at stake, but I do believe we could have developed a better Pepsi Logo…and for a lot less money.

images