"Whatever happened to good?" asks the white man with graying hair, dad khakis and an alarmingly large face as he fills his mug with coffee brewed from beans which were picked by poor farmers who make less than a few dollars a day for working the vast plantations that produce the beans, which are shipped to large industrial facilities to be toasted, pulverized into a dry, soil-like mass and eventually dumped into large blue tubs bearing the logo of Maxwell House, a billion-dollar brand of Kraft Foods, mega-purveyor of chemically ingenious foodstuffs, which is keen to regain its status as the biggest coffee seller in the United [...]
"BuzzFeed is like the porn industry in the ’90s. All online marketers watched what the porn people did from a marketing and technology standpoint because they were always on the cutting edge. That’s where a lot of the marketing and advertising techniques that made it into the mainstream in the early 2000s came from." [Via]
After receiving twenty-seven rejection letters, Theodor Seuss Geisel published his first children’s book in 1937. But And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street wasn’t going to pay the bills during the Great Depression.
Still, Geisel’s wife, Helen, encouraged the thirty-three-year-old, who'd left Oxford without taking a degree, to pursue an artistic career—which he did, just as practically as he could. Geisel spent his days at the New York City-based humor magazine Judge, and worked on his children’s books during off hours.
But really he was, by then, an ad man. In 1928, the wife of a Standard Oil executive was thumbing [...]
If I worked at New York magazine, I'd spend the day cross-referencing people hair-rending on Twitter about the magazine going biweekly with the subscriber list. Just saying.
Looking at the MPA data for New York magazine gives one small side of the story. Sampling Q1 and Q3 data since 2006, actual reported print revenue doesn't change that radically, at least since the Great Downturn or whatever we're calling it.
But total ad pages per quarter does change.
What's interesting is that the magazine, like, you know, lots of magazines, makes lots of money. According to the Times, going biweekly "will yield about $3.5 million in savings." [...]
Back in the simpler days of Q3 of 2013, I attended Beautiful Minds, a competitive recruiting event at Bartle Bogle Hegarty, an English advertising agency with offices in Manhattan. "Mad Men" is generally indulgent fun, and I was eager to see how the ad business had changed, or if I was really lucky, not changed at all, over the years.
The competition, oddly, was a memorial tribute to Griffin Farley, a planner and strategist at the agency who died in February 2013. Happily, the dates coincided nearly perfectly with my vacation time, so Europe could wait, and I booked from Los Angeles to New York City instead. It [...]
"Page Morton Black, the cabaret singer whose sprightly rendition of [the Chock Full o’Nuts jingle] in radio and television ads was indelibly engraved on New Yorkers’ brains at midcentury, died on Sunday at her home in the Premium Point enclave of New Rochelle, N.Y. She was 97." —I am NOT from midcentury, although some days it feels as if I am, and I can assure you that even those of us who grew up in this area as late as the nineteen hundred and eighties still have this song stamped indelibly on their brains. I imagine 30 years from now people will be feeling a twinge of nostalgia [...]
"The information economy that we are currently building doesn't really embrace capitalism, but rather a new form of feudalism," writes Jaron Lanier, in Who Owns the Future? That book is published today, and you can order it from all the usual places. (Indiebound; Amazon; McNally Jackson; Barnes & Noble; Powell's. See what I did there?)
Jaron Lanier is the author of You Are Not a Gadget, and is a "scholar-at-large" at Microsoft Research. LOL he's also working on an alternative to the space elevator.
But right now, he's looking at how things have come to work on the web. "The primary business of [...]
"At Melbourne High School on the Atlantic coast in Florida, veteran theater director Rodney Savickis struck a deal with a local Starbucks to help sponsor an April production of 'Romeo and Juliet' set to grunge music in today's Seattle, with the Capulets led by the CEO of Starbucks and the Montagues by the CEO of Microsoft. 'Romeo is kind of a computer geek,' and Juliet an 'earthy, crunchy granola type,' Mr. Savickis says. The local Starbucks plans to donate cups, coffee, pastries and some baristas to sell food at intermission and after the show. Proceeds will go to the school, [...]
"If you are trying to sell a product, a service or even a personality (such as running for office), you will experience the most success if your marketing strategy includes three positive claims — no more and no less, according to new research published in the Journal of Marketing. The findings show that giving three positive claims about your product creates a more positive impression than just two; but a fourth claim makes it look like you’re trying too hard — inviting consumer skepticism."
They must be having a fire sale at Twitter Ads, I have been thinking recently, given the totally random whatnots showing up in my feed. I know, right? What? It gets weirder.
Is the future going to be watching a commercial before you watch a commercial? Depending on what the pre-roll you get here is, probably, yeah. Anyway, "Get ready to sob… it's the John Lewis Christmas advert: Tear-jerking commercial tells story of hare making sure his bear best friend doesn't miss out on the big day," is pretty much the story. I mean, whatever, I have enough that makes me cry already, weepy touts for English department stores don't make the list but, you know, bears and Britain, plus it's Friday? It would be insane if we didn't post this. That's Lily [...]
To adapt Robin Williams' immortal comment on cocaine, buying a newspaper could be God’s way of telling you you’re making too much money. (But not for long—ha-ha.) The sales of the Boston Globe to Red Sox owner John Henry and the Washington Post to Amazon’s Jeff Bezos at prices reflecting but a glimmer of the gold they once traded for has triggered a bull market in speculation over the general future of newspapers and the fate of the New York Times, in particular.
Come Visit South Australia, Where We Will Chop You Up And Turn You Into Sausage For Our Demonic Feast
"Just thought you might enjoy this singularly creepy tourism ad for the Barossa Valley in South Australia," writes a correspondent from Down Under. "The Barossa is a famous wine-growing and foodie area, so I can understand why someone thought 'Be consumed' was a killer line. Unfortunately when it's paired with Nick Cave's 'Red Right Hand' and South Australia's reputation as the serial killer state… well. 'You know you're never coming back', indeed." I kind of like this, but I am also of the opinion that pretty much anywhere you go in Australia you have even odds of ending up as the filling for a meat pie, so I guess [...]
"Amid a global rollout of its new mini-SUV, General Motors is pulling an international television commercial for its Chevrolet Trax — an ad featuring a song including the lyric 'ching ching, chop suey,' plus other references that offended Asian viewers as well as dated depictions of the Middle East. Perhaps the strangest part of the scandal is that each of those references offended different markets in the rollout in a different way… The lyrics include references to China as 'the land of Fu Manchu' where girls say 'ching, ching, chop-suey, swing some more!' The song also references racial stereotypes of Arabs, Gypsies and Japanese."
In The Noonday Demon, Andrew Solomon makes the point that depression sufferers see the world, their own circumstances and failings, more accurately than healthy people—positing thus that perhaps optimism is the defining characteristic of the human condition.
I think of this often with regards to my relationship with television. Television is like depression. Without it, I can think America isn’t so bad. With it, I sometimes want to kill myself.
Honda's "Pretty Great" ad, made by Santa Monica-based Rubin Postaer and Associates, appears on its surface to be a simple, direct pander to millennials—a typical commoditization of hipness and dissent. Yet its very attempt to mask with cloying optimism [...]
"There was a time when the Super Bowl was not only synonymous with funny advertising, but synonymous with funny monkey advertising. Now, it looks like bears may be taking monkeys' place."
News curmudgeons relish blaming the internet for things they don’t like, a pastime that is maddening, a little sad, and just ironic. These people who fetishize print media's past are often selective in their memories of it.
For instance, BuzzFeed didn't invent coverage of silly animals, and it certainly didn't invent native advertising—that is, advertising with a narrative structure that mirrors surrounding editorial content. (You might also call this “sponsored content" or “advertorial.")
"Lou Reed’s cool lives on." Guess how!
"I want to use all my social media platforms to write 'HELP!' but instead I have another Heineken." —Guy becomes an ad.
Comments sections are "some of the darkest places online," says a guy from 'Today,' and social media is "the new Ku Klux Klan white hood," a lady agrees, and you know what, when you realize how upset some people appeared to get over a Cheerios ad, you can sort of see their point.