In the UK, confectionery maker Cadbury has just launched a talent contest based on podcasting. The contest aims at discovering undiscovered talent, no matter in which field, as long as it can be expressed through audio. Singers-songwriters, poets and/or writers can submit their mp3 and be featured in a weekly selection distributed as podcast. The public will then be able to download the file and vote for the best work.
I can't tell you exactly why, but I very much feel like these guys just thought: what's hot in online marketing? Podcasting. So let's make something using podcasting, no matter if it's not original nor funny...
Heineken Netherlands once again hooks up with Google to promote their new product Tapvat (Draught Keg). This time Google Maps is integrated in the Tapvat World Tour 2006 campaign. Visitors are challenged to search the world for gigs from Dutch live band Voicst using satellite maps. A radio signal leads them to the right spot.
In 2005 Heineken also coorporated with Google for the introduction of Tapvat. In that campaign – Tapvat on Tour - Google Image Search was integrated as a personalized postcard generator, challenging visitors to find the most original destination to take along their Tapvat.
Since this a campaign from my own agency Qi (I really had to share this one, sorry), I left my opinion behind. But I'm curious what you think..
Leif (thanks!) just sent me this guerrilla marketing campaign for Bild, a popular newspaper in Germany. During the German Art Directors Club awards show in Berlin last week, Jung von Matt Hamburg "decorated" the men's toilets with a special mirror. While performing their physiological duties men could actually look at their best friend with a slogan below "Nothing's harder than the truth".
From The Netherlands another interesting website exploiting the potentials of broadband and Flash 8. Draft and Satama Interactive Amsterdam have created "Het Huis van Morgen" ("The House of Tomorrow") for KPN, the top telco company in the country. The site has the goal of illustrating the potentials of broadband and of the new multimedia services which are becoming available.
You can navigate through the house interacting with the videos (no more static backgrounds!) and while exploring the KPN products you meet a family which something between The Simpsons and The Keatons. Even if the dialogues are in Dutch I'm sure you will appreciate the innovative side of the site. Make sure you don't skip the intro, it's kind of funny.
Draft London is behind the new online marketing campaign launched by Oxfam to make people sensible to the world poverty issue. To deliver such an important and serious message, Draft decided to take an entertaining tone of voice, setting up A Bit Unfair, and advertainment site which makes people "play with poverty".
The sad message is that no matter what's the game, rich countries always win. Things need to change.
By: martina // Permalink // Comment(s): Category(s):Advertainment
I did a mistake the other day with this post. The website promoting the horror movie Hills Have Eyes features two advergames:
1. One (very scary) game for Australia, created by Soap Creative.
2. One (Schockwave) game for the US, created by Jetset Studios.
What will you do to promote an horror movie? You will first put online a minisite, and then add a two scary advergames. Easy, isn't it?
Orbit is online with an advertainment website called "Friends of Bright" (created by EVB). Very American (smiling faces everywhere :-), very hippy (Brightness isn't a destination, it'a way of life) and "broadbandish" ( it's full of video and audio content). If you have five minutes to waste invest, check it out, it's fun.
The site isn't just funny it is also extremely smart. It features a somehow intelligent video interface which keeps track of your actions and the second time you come back it actually welcomes you in a different way. Okay, it's just about cookies, but cookies + video interface is kind of new, don't you agree?
Pepsi Japan is online with a weird advergame in which you have to run and click to destroy a series of ice walls. Make sure you read the instructions before starting because they forgot to put the help option. It very difficult to play so, be patient!
Coca-Cola is supporting its new energy drink Relentless with an online markteting campaign (via Brand Republic). A website delivers the message "No half measures" through videos animations. I like the look & feel of the site kind of artistic and unpredictable. Actually it's not easy to understand what's the product they're trying to promote, and this can be good or bad, depending on how strong the brand is (so maybe in this case it's bad...).
On New Media Age (sub. req.) Sean Hargreave explores the state of the art of advertising on instant messaging services such as MSN or Yahoo! Messenger. If you want to target teenagers this seems to be the perfect channel to use. It's not just about placing a banner at the bottom of the application, but most of all about creating "skins" or branded theme packs to personalize the IM interface.
One interesting example of IM brand campaign comes from French Connection gave users of Yahoo! Messenger the possibility to browse FCUK 2005 collection and try on the latest fashions by customising their Yahoo! avatar or virtual identity.
On ClickZ, Laura Marriott tries to find out whether North America is ahead or behind Europe when it comes to mobile marketing. It a quite interesting article to realize the differences among the two continents, and understand the solutions (not the strategies!) which can perform better.
For example, in the US mobile search, mobile advertising, and mobile video initiatives are very popular, while text-based campaigns deliver the best results in Europe.
If you're interested in the topic, you can also download a recent case study by the Mobile Marketing Association. Also, on Mobhappy, Carlo Longino has recently posted a good analysis of the importance of (mobile advertising) to support and therefore deliver free content.
Another guerrilla campaign for the World Water Day. Intermon Oxfam placed king size straws on the sewers of Madrid, Barcelona and Zaragoza with the message "Would you drink from this water? Thousand of people haven't got other choice."
The campaign is an idea of CP Proximity Live Spain (thanks Marcos!).
Juxt Interactive has recently created an advertainment website for Dannon's Spring Water. The site is definitely very well designed, with nice animations and a good navigation interface.
What I really liked are the "loader games" to play while you wait for the content to load. An excellent idea for any advertainment style site packed with heavy content. People expect the site to be entertaining, so they don't get bored while waiting for the entertainment to be delivered.
I know it might sound like a naive comment, but it's so nice to see more and more extremely traditional businesses, such as postal and train services embracing online marketing.
Yesterday I talked about The Royal Mail in the UK and TPG Post in The Netherlands, today I will point you to what Eurostar is doing in UK and SNFC is doing in France.
Eurostar has just launched blog, "Voice of a city" in which it provides insider's views of Paris, sharing tips on how to get the most out of La Villa Lumière. Actually the blog, created by Proximity London, has been online since September last year, but I only found it out today reading NMA. Anyway, it's good to see that after six? seven? month, they still keep it very much updated- In a way this initiative reminds me of Virgin Atlantic's travel guides delivered as podcasts.
For World Water Day, more than 500 of these Green Belgium stickers were stuck in washbasins in cinemas, pubs, restaurants, public toilets, universities and stations in nine Belgian cities and in Mexico City (where the 2006 World Water Forum was held).
Two giants recently got married: Google and Nike have partnered to launch Joga an online community for football fans "by invitation only". Since it applies the same concept of Gmail, I cannot exactly tell you what the site is about (I haven't been invited in yet :-(. But I can unveil (?!) the site will be available in 14 languages.
The site is the next step in Nike's Joga Bonito campaign on the way to Germany 2006. A series of short videos (by Wieden & Kennedy) is also part of the effort.
In the UK the Royal Mail is giving customers the opportunity to personalise stamps with their own pictures. For about fifteen pounds you get 20 stamps with your own design to celebrate for any special occasion, marriage, birth or birthday. The service is call "Smilers" and of course is available online, thanks to a technology developed by Proximity London (news via Brand Republic).
Also in The Netherlands the local postal service (TPG Post) has recently launched a weblog dedicated to stamps collectors. On Postzegelblog.nl (in Dutch) users can find news and information on the new stamps on the market. The weblog has no clear business plan at the moment, the idea is just to appeal potential stamps collectors and evolve accordingly.
A new study from market research agency BMRB suggests that over 10% of the adult population have already downloaded a podcast in the last six months and figures will continue to grow. Digital Bulletin reports that in the UK over 7.9m adults could be downloading podcasts over the next six month, representing a unique opportunity for brands to advertise on already successful podcasts or create new (high quality) branded audio content. BMW docet?
If you haven't had dinner in the last hour, go and check the new creepy Playstation 2 campaign to promote the new "Getaway 2/Black Monday" game.
I found it on TwentyFour, which also points out that "in New Zealand crime scene installations were set up in three cities (Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch). Radio ads and editorials on city channels gave clues to the whereabouts of the scenes: listeners who cracked the clues and were able to find the locations, were rewarded with a brand new PS2 console and a copy of the game".
In Germany Coke Light is about to launch its own podcast as part of the "Live Life Light" campaign. The podcast will last about 15 minutes and will feature inspirational content to help people discovering the beautiful side of life and "think positive".
I can't wait to download this... I definitely need Coke to inspire my life (of course I'm joking!)
From Sweden (via Reklamfeber), The Mouse Files a sort of online adventure (investigation) game created by DDB for OLWs Cheese Doodles. Very much in X-Files style, the site is very well done and interesting to explore, also for the strange English/Swedish copy mix. Unfortunately I haven't understand how the game works, but it seems quite sticky.
British Airways is about to relaunch its website to increase the ticket sales online. As explained on BrandRepublic, an internal team is working on the new site. The news site also reports BA is investing £200m in improving the travellers' experience to fight the competition of low cost carriers, by reducing the cost and increasing the overall customer experience.
By: martina // Permalink // Comment(s): Category(s):New websites
New Media Age has an interesting article (sorry, sub. required) on the business Sony has generated with the launch of the PSP. Brands like Nike and media giants like MTV and Conde Nast have started creating content specifically for the PSP, which isn't simply a gaming device but it's most of all a source of entertainment. A good example is the Tv program Dubplate Drama which last was screened first on the PSP and later aired on Channel 4 and MTV.
In France, Danette has launched an online public-opinion poll to decide which will be the new dessert flavour. On onvotetouspourdanette.com visitors are invited to choose among three tastes. By entering the poll, they also get the chance to win one year of Danette supply.
Interesting idea for consumers's empowerment on the Web, but the online communication could have been exploited more. For example, by creating a more interactive and engaging website. Danette e-cards where you can put your face on aren't exactly a strong driver of interaction.
Next autumn the BBC will launch an online only TV series, the Wannebes. Netimperative reports the show will be broadcasted through a website which will also feature related animations and games. The series will allow users to interact with the 14 episodes, providing the characters with advices on their relationships and life choices.
On the way to Germany 2006, Adidas moves a further step into smart online marketing: they just launched a branded desktop RSS reader which will allow user to get all the latest football news (from Yahoo!, Radio 1 and Sky) plus exclusive Adidas content. Users can choose different readers, selecting for example the one personalized with David Beckham.
Mary Woodbridge lives in Greenfield, UK, together with her dog Daisy. Mary is about to climb Mount Everest. On her site, Mary has a few video clips of the preparations she's been doing. There's a 'Tips for Mary' corner and 'Plan and Training' section. The website looks like a very basic one in html, the way websites were made long ago in forgotten decades of the previous century. You just got to see this, it's a great experience, created by Spillmann/Felser/Leo Burnett from Zurich, Switzerland.
Story: An 85-year old British Lady by the name of Mary Wooldbridge, who takes her dachshund for a daily walk, buys a Mammut-Jacket to proctect herself from the wind and weather. This Jacket is obviously so good that the elderly lady believes that she can climb Mount Everest wearing it.
In-game product placement for music artists: Depeche Mode have made a special version of their single "Suffer Well" for the game “Sims 2: Open for business”. What is really funny (and smart) is that the song is sung in "Simlish", The Sims’ own language.
By: martina // Permalink // Comment(s): Category(s):Entertainment
You can tell mobile marketing has arrived in the United States by the fact The Apprentice challenges candidates creating an SMS campaign. As Textually explains, in the second episode the candidates are challenged with developing a text messaging campaign to promote the Gillette Fusion, a razor system with five blades in one head.
Heineken is currently investing about $50m in the launch of its new Premium Light beer. Part of the budget will be dedicated to online marketing and advertising. Online ads are already running on sites which reach 25 to 29 years old men, driving traffic to a flashy and stylish site (by Berlin Cameron United) where the new beer is unveiled. A (not so) viral video is also part of the effort, with "master mystifier Criss Angel attempting a jaw-dropping escape in the hear of NYC"...
Print and TV ads are also part of the most expensive product launch Heineken has ever done.
Ok, if you stopped laughing after watching Volkswagen's commercials, now I will make you cry with this Nike ad. If you played basketball and loved Michael Jordan, this ad will take you back to the time when you "wanted to be like Mike". Absolutely amazing.
From Argentina, and from my friend Fernando at Ogilvy Interactive, a series of nice campaigns they have been creating for Amex Shop, DHL and Clarin.com. The one I prefer is Salary-Matic, created to promote an online recruiting service. The minisite asks you: "How much do you think you deserve to make?". Just make sure you don't share your answer with colleagues...
Good news: Nike has started blogging (blog.nikebasketball.com). Bad news: Nike doesn't update the blog (last entry is dated Feb 21st).
Good to know we are all human: even the online marketing "monster" sometimes does something wrong.
Actually looking at the blog's content it appears to be related only to the Houston's All Star Game, but I didn't find any reference it was going to cover on such event.
McDonald's is online with a weird advergame to promote its "Filet-o-Fish" sandwich. In the game, created by Moroch, players need to click as fast as they can to keep sharks away from a sandwich floating in the deep Ocean.
The game develops on three levels, which I haven't been able to unlock. Anyway, players have the option to cheat and get a level code even if they don't succeed in level 1. Of course McD doesn't provide the cheat for free: in order to get it players either have to refer-a-friend or to take part to an online survey. I don't know, I think I miss something... The game in itself it's quite nice, but it's not something you couldn't live without. So why should people refer friends or share information if the only reward they get is a cheat code?
By: martina // Permalink // Comment(s): Category(s):Advergames
New Media Age reports the results of the recent online marketing effort by Honda. The video podcast of the Civic Tv commercial featuring the choir drove more than 3 million people to Honda's new website. In case you didn't see it, it's here. Kudos to Wieden + Kennedy for creating such a beautiful, yet viral, video.
I believe it's really an hard job working as a marketer at McDonald's. As Seth Godin says "all marketers are liars" but trying to tell the story that eating at McD is healthy is very tough. Anyway, the news (via Netimperative) is that the fast food giant has launched a site which allows customers to calculate the nutritional value of McD's meals.
The agency Ralph (ex DS.Emotion) worked with McDonald's IT department to create a tool where users can calculate their personal Guideline Daily Amounts (GDA) of calories and key nutrients, by inputting details like age, weight and activity level. The site is in three languages (Italian, English and French) and debuted last month during the Olympics, with touch screen kiosks installed at the Winter Olympic village in Turin.
Via Adrants, the latest crazy idea by Axe: "The order of the Serpentine, a sacred brotherhood helping young men overcome shame caused by questionable hook-ups". For every man aiming at having a clean body and a clean conscience, Axe has launched a new scrubbing gel promoted with the usual, unusual viral idea.
In Belgium Snow (a division of LG&F;) launches a national campaign (TV, print, online) against smoking. The campaign is very funny and uses a different approach, depending on the medium. Also banners with different messages are created for online media (depending on the topic of the site they are placed on).
It's a powerfull campaign that focusses on smokers but also on the non-smokers which can become buddies to help people stop smoking.
On the campaign website you can send in tips and tricks for the people in need (smokers). :)
I am sure this is a campaign that will stick in peoples minds.
Inbox Digital has just released a nice advergame for Vicks First Defence, a nasal spray that fights colds at the early signs. They have taken a very classic destroyer game and adapted the concept to Vicks' characteristics: you fly over a daily planner and you have to destroy the viruses as well as protecting very important days of your agenda, such as, Valentine's Day.
A nice execution, especially considering the product the advergame promotes.
American Express is using various rich media formats to generate awareness of its new Red card, designed to raise funds for charity. The campaign has been created by Poke, and drives traffic to a dedicated microsite which simply delivers the information on how the card works and how to get it.
The Red credit card by American Express is part of a series of initiatives to support Product Red, a union of brands (Armani, Converse and Gap), people, ideas to fight against AIDS in Africa. Visit Joinred.com to find out more.
Mercedes-Benz in Germany has launched the campaign microsite Cabriotag (The day for a convertible). On entering the website, the user has to choose his location. The atmosphere of the website is then adjusted to the actual weather condition in the chosen city.
My Dutch friends at Qi, have just launched the Kiss Off competition, a funny viral game for Stimorol Chewing Gum. Set your lip pressure, the tongue thrust and the moisture level and challenge a friend in sexy competition.
Take Note is an interesting on- and offline connection from Staedtler, an international writing instruments supplier. They invite site visitors to say something, whether thoughtful or stupid - by online writing a note to friends, strangers or themselves. Staedtler will write down this message on real paper and send it on to the specified address - along with a black and red pencil. Too bad it only works for Australia, but the idea from agency Host is great.
Jean passed me the link to Plastique de Reve, the blog recently launched by Dior to talk, and have people talk about its Dior Parfums (and related products). The blog is only in French, and it's written by an external agency (Je suis unique) and 12 external bloggers who will be reviewing Dior's products.
It launched a few weeks ago, but it already collected a lot of very polite and "moderated" comments (more 220 in a week) and this is somehow weird, as Jean points out, since there are only 9 IP addresses posting them... The Big (blog) Brother is watching you... (aka brands cannot play with fire).