back to school

Three words, that even as an adult send a chill up my spine. If you feel the same way when you start seeing back to school sales flyers and ads, then you'll love the new Old Navy spots, by Deutsch, scheduled to start airing on Monday.

best day for email campaigns

eROI just released a study about response rates from email campaigns. From the MarketingVox article on the study:

Overall, the majority B2B marketers should be getting emails out at the beginning of the week (Monday to Wednesday morning), whereas consumer-driven campaigns do best toward the end of the week (Wednesday afternoon to Saturday), according to eROI.

Overall, Wednesday is the best day for response. That's the day that we're all finally getting out of the weekend funk, but not yet preparing for the upcoming weekend - but not exactly working either, because we're reading email campaigns.

instant friends

Lonely? Want some good company that doesn't talk back? Introducing Single Wallpaper, the friend that comes in a roll and doesn't leave until you strip them from the wall. They have males and females - with or without backgrounds. Because hanging out alone is not fun. You can also use them in retail displays, like the one pictured above.

favourite favicons

I just stumbled across this great collection of favicons. Favicons are the 16 x 16 pixel graphics that appear in the url location bar of your browser, or, if you use Firefox, also on the tab of the page you're visiting. It's a challenging space to design for because of its size, so it's cool to see so many great and creative solutions. Check out the collection, and call us if your site doesn't have a favicon yet.

be google

Ever wish you were Google? Now you can have your very own Google page, with Logogle - the Google Logo Maker. Just type in your name, click "make", and you've been Google-fied. Now if you could only get those Google stock options.

burger king gets cocky?

There's a bunch of controversy about a new site promoting Burger King, called The site features a fictitious band called CoqRoq. According to this AdAge article, the site's recently been updated to remove some of the potentially offensive language - like "Groupies love the Coq" and “Groupies love Coq. Agency Crispin, Porter & Bogusky claims it's an XML/Flash bug in the site, and has been corrected. Ha. Right.

So here we all go again - once again promoting Burger King in the blogosphere. Go ahead and start sending it to your friends now.

construction update

Here's the latest on the construction of our new conference room. We're almost there! Sheetrock and painting is complete. Now we just need flooring, lighting, curtains, furniture and media equipment. The fun stuff. The pic above is of the newly created foyer to the room.

The entrance will have galvanized steel pocket doors. The floor will be rubber, from recycled tires. We're getting these chairs, in white. The whole room will be covered 360 degrees in curtains, similar to this pic. We're thinking about this table. And the lighting should be pretty cool, too. Stay tuned for the latest details!

coke gets cool

Coke recently commissioned five designers from around the world to design custom aluminum coke bottles. Don't expect to be drinking from these bottles at Dairy Queen. According to Coke, the bottles will only be available at "the world's most exclusive clubs and lounges". Coming soon to a hipster joint near you.

for those who like to watch

Years ago, there was word that the Gap was developing a virtual shopping experience, where you could create your own body, and try on Gap clothing online. This was in the day where things like that weren't possible on the web - and people were all oohh and ahhh about the idea.

Well now, they've done it - but this isn't really about creating a virtual self. I don't need to see a virtual version of myself doing a strip tease. Nor would anyone else, I'm guessing. But I could watch a runway model with a large chest strip tease out of her Gap clothing. I'm just saying that I could. Not that I would.

So create a model - choose age, weight, hair color, chest size, eyebrows, and everything else. And she dances, too. They also have guy models, for those that are so inclined.

Thanks bill @ A&P, and adrants!

fruity tattoo

This is more than a few days old, but still worth mentioning. What a great idea for promotional events or trade show give-aways. It's now possible to laser tattoo a piece of fruit. Which on one hand, is better than those annoying labels, but on the other hand, is tattooing fruit. Anyway, you know that if you were handing out oranges that were tattooed like basketballs, or lemons tattooed like smiley faces, everyone would want one.

metro logos

Check out this collection of metro logos from around the world, titled Variations of the Letter M. There's also a nice collection of interior photos of metros from around the world - which really makes our subway system in New York look pretty stinky, in comparison. Check out the photos from Berlin and Baku, and you'll see what I mean. But we're ok with that. From Unbeige.

last minute pitch idea

There are countless great custom t-shirt sites out there on the interweb. But what I really like about the Spreadshirt site is the whole instant gratification thing. You can create custom shirts, and see what they'll look light right away. I've got no idea on the quality of printing here - but what a cool leave behind for your next client pitch meeting. T-shirts with messages customized to your pitch, shipped 24 - 48 hours after you place the order. Upload your logo or graphics, or choose from some of their pretty cool stock graphics. Just an idea.

we pitched this idea

We pitched this idea - the cause-related dog tag, to a client, who turned it down. :(

Now, it's apparently the next big thing. Ours were going to be a bit hipper - black dog tags on black chains. Just one more example of how we're always right, and that we know everything. Still not too late to use the concept for a company/product promotional item.

semi-permanent conference

Think you might be really bored in September? Sign up for Semipermanent, a collective/forum/conference/exhibition geared towards creative people. From the conference description:

Unlike most design conferences that tend to focus on technology, Semi-Permanent delves into the creative side of design. Focusing on the passion that creative people have for their work.

The conference includes a diverse range of design fields: graphic design, broadcast, illustration, photography, web, fashion, film, graffiti, animation, and more.

Sponsored by designiskinky, and some other cool people.

fat wallets are so over

Kevin and I have been telling Justus and Dave this forever. It's time to get a nice, thin, wallet. Here's a really cool place to start. Tinymeat crafts wallets, card holders and wristbands out of plastic, paint swatches (!), and original art. Great gift for your creative friend who's still sportin' the George Costanza wallet. From the DailyCandy.

10 for 10

Everyone's reporting on cnet's top 10 web fads in the blogoshere this morning, which is amusing - but I've found a top ten list that's far more useful, on micropersuation.

The top 10 trends to watch over the next 10 years, according to Steve Rubel. I think he's right on - although I might add customization, which I posted about earlier in the week. Check it out, and see how the list applies to your business.

sugar crash

We play this game in real life at our office everyday. It's called Sugar Crash, and it's sugary loads of fun. In this version, you help a kid have tons of fun by maintaining his sugar level.

In our office version, we maintain sugar levels to deliver sweet design and branding. As long as it all happens before the 4pm sugar crash. From BoingBoing .

kevin's on morphine

Here's an update for the Kevin fans -

He's on morphine, and he gets to control the drip. So far, they haven't cut him off. If you'd like to send flowers, coffee or chocolate chip cookies, you can contact us for his info at Yale New Haven Hospital. He prefers chocolate chip cookies over flowers, fyi.

we heart kevin

Lauren, Kevin's real boss, called to let everyone know that Kevin's just fine. Everything went just right, and he's currently recovering from surgery. Lauren sounded a little upset that he didn't come out of surgery with the six pack abs. Perhaps VIA group health insurance wouldn't cover that part.

If you'd like to send flowers, cheeseburgers, or Dunkin Donuts Coolatas, we'll get you his details when we get them. He's scheduled to be moved into his own private room tomorrow.

construction update

Major progress on the buildout of our new conference room yesterday. The windows arrived, and were hoisted up the four floors to our roof, and then installed. They're huge. Nine feet tall - and they seem even bigger. Sitting in our conference room might feel a little bit like sitting in an aquarium. They also installed insulation, and HVAC ducts. It's taking shape quickly. We'll keep you posted.

Separately, a certain female visitor to our office thoroughly enjoyed the view of construction guys, without shirts, getting all sweaty in the 97 degree heat. She suggested we setup a "buff-cam", so that fans could watch the buff action. We'll hold on that one, for now.

summer fun

Here's two fun spots from AdForum's "most watched spots" this week. Check them out:

Skinscope a spot for Boots Healthcare by Mother, and Holiday, an Australian spot for a brand called Big Pond.

we heart kevin

Kevin goes into surgery this morning, at Yale-New Haven hospital. He's having some long needed repairs done to his heart. Originally scheduled weeks ago, the surgery was postponed until today. We suspect he'll also get a little nip/tuck while he's in. Look for pec or six-pack ab implants when he gets out. We'll keep you posted on his condition.

blue tooth branding

20th Century Fox and Loews Theaters are distributing movie trailers, ring tones and pictures through kiosks in three Loews theaters - in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Anyone with a blue tooth enabled cell phone can download the goodies, for free.

No word on the actual number of downloads just yet - but this is definitely a good example of mobile marketing potential. For this to crack open big time, we'll need more Bluetooth phones in the marketplace - which for now, represents only the top tier, early adopter phone freaks. But it's coming.

pdf online

Don't have the latest version of Word, and need to convert a document (or something else) into a pdf file? Here's a really cool tool called PDF Online. This is a web-based (hooray!) tool that lets users convert almost any type of document into a pdf file.

the end of positioning

Here's an excellent article on Brand Noise about the end of positioning. A quote from Larry Light, McDonald's chief global marketing officer, says it all: "Identifying one brand position, communicating it in a repetitive manner is old-fashioned, out of date, out of touch."

Hooray. Major brands are finally noticing - the old school rules don't work anymore. Consumers want products and brands (and the campaigns that sell them) crafted just to their needs. It's all about customization. Which seems to be a trend with my last few posts. Hmmm.

flash concerts

Kudos to Ford and Sony Pictures Digital for being the first marketers to launch a major campaign around flash mobs. Several top artists are set to perform secret concerts, up-close-and-personal for fans across the US this summer - but you've got to be on the flash mob list to get the details. It's all part of Ford's introduction to their new 2006 Fusion sedan. Genius.

custom vans sneakers

I like to pretend that I single handedly discovered custom vans, back in the 80's. But I didn't. It is important to remind everybody that Vans did invent the custom sneaker market - especially in light of all the hype that Nike's been generating with their custom program. As a salute to Vans, here's a really cool collection of vans custom sneakers/art.

Marketers take note: custom is our future.

graffiti bandwagon

Three interesting items in the blogosphere, that are all graffiti related:

First, the French Yellow Pages is using a technique titled clean tags, where the artist cleans an area, leaving the dirty area to create a message. Kind of a reverse stencil thing. A British street artist called moose is credited with being first on the block with the technique.

Next - NYC residents will recognize the frequent and famous I love you tags, (and I'm not certain who gets credit for creating them), but now they've shown up in this ad for Ketel One. Ha.

And last, my personal favorite this week (pictured above) - not everyone in NYC is happy with the condo and hotel development that seems to be taking over every available inch of NYC real estate. Here's a clever protest sign, on a plywood facade in the lower east side.

cereal. the next big thing.

I previously posted about Cereality - who is now opening their third store in Chicago, according to Adfreak. Well, check out this excellent collection of cheap ass cereals, from the cheap ass cereal hall of fame. My favorite is fruity nuggets, pictured above. I'd be pretty upset if my mom brought home fruity nuggets from the grocery store. Reminds me of the time that Justus brought in a can of Splash it Up, a cheap imitation of 7up. He was known as "splash it up" for quite some time in our office. If you want to be cool, I suggest you stick with real cereal. Like Quisp.

more gen-x culture...

As mentioned in my June 7th entry about "80's culture", it is quite apparent that Gen-X'ers are heavily influencing mainstream media these days, as pop culture from the 80's and early 90's resurfaces more and more. This resurgence definitely connects with the 'twenty to thirty-something' audiences it targets. It seems the good ol' days of Kool-Aid, Garfield, and the Transformers are upon us once again...

So, if you ever find yourself reminiscing about the cultural products of the 80's and 90's, you should check out this tribute site X-Entertainment. The two Gen-X'ers who run the site have a vast catalog of mainstream media/pop culture related collections.

One of my favorite X-Entertainment pages is called 80's ads, where you can watch old TV commercials, such as "Annoying Encyclopedia Britannica Boy" and "Chef Boyardee Smurfs Pasta." I had forgotten about that "Annoying Encyclopedia Boy", but when I watched the clip, I still remembered every word of that commercial and of him looking down at his feet when they flashed the 800 number. Scary.

that's what i'm talkin' about

Here's a brief synopsis of a session at the ad:tech Chicago 2005 conference titled "Blogvertising, RSS and Podcasting Opportunities for Marketers." This was meant to provide an overview of the advertising opportunities that exist in the blogsphere for marketers. An excerpt, of a point made by Weblogs Inc. President Shawn Gold: appearing below the fold actually performed better than those above the fold on Weblogs Inc. weblogs and advertorials performed 2 to 10 times better than banner ads.

Add a blogvertising line item to your budget today!

learn yo'self

If your kids are quoting the RZA or GZA - Do Not Be Alarmed!
As I'm sure you know, RZA and GZA are members of the famous, sometimes infamous, rap group Wu-Tang Clan (an office favorite). While the lyrics, and certainly some of the language may cause some to blush, their message has become increasingly intelligent and poignant for youth culture. RZA is now a much sought after producer and pop icon for his unique vision, so much so that Quentin Tarrantino tapped him to produce the entire soundtrack to his epic movies Kill Bill Vols. One and Two.

Without choosing sides of the religion/spiritual battle, RZA, especially, is presenting many different spiritual paths in a tolerant and evocative style. Check out this article on Bodltype for more info. Don't let the kids get all the knowledge. My favorite lines: "Today, I'm not a Muslim. I'm not a Buddhist. I'm a student." Thus beginneth the lesson.

pink panty poker

If you like poker, and seeing girls in their underwear, then you're going to love the new viral promotion from Victoria's Secret. It's supposedly geared towards young females - but so far, it's a big hit with the guys in our office. I'm just stoked that I finally got to use the word panty in a blog headline. Work done by CP&B, Miami.

happy b-day leigh!

As if we weren't already fat enough from Friday's escapade with Krispy Kremes, today we celebrated Leigh's birthday. Chocolate and vanilla marble, with lots of pretty flowers in icing. Mmmmm.

Like a vampire, she's really difficult to capture in a photo, so we're just showing you her finger pic, taken when she was engaged a few weeks ago.

pop art

Andy Warhol would love this. Here's a brief post about Ryan Watkins-Hughes, an artist who creates (or re-labels) products and places them in retail environments. And now, you can submit your own stuff for his newest project. Visit shopdropping for details.

Shopdropping (the opposite of shoplifting) can be done either as an art installation, or for promotional stunts. One of the most successful examples, is from the Barbie Liberation Organization, one of my favorite shopdrop events ever.

mmmmmm..... donuts.

Just thought I'd take this opportunity to warn you, that if by chance you were thinking of visiting our office today, it may be a good idea to stay where you are for now. As you can see above, Kevin is holding a box of good ol' Krispy Kreme donuts. One of two, yes two, that were delivered to our office this morning. Now, if you divide 24 donuts, by the number of people in our office, that leaves just about 5 donuts per person. To some of you that may sound like a lot for one person... but to Kevin its "Mmmmmmm..... breakfast, lunch AND dinner."

Lucky for us, due to our Summer Friday schedule, we're outta here at 1... I think it's safe to say we'll all be napping by 3.

deutsch gets violent

People who know me, know that I really respect Donny Deutsch, and his agency. Almost to the point of worship. But then there's his tv show - "the big idea". I've tried to watch it, thinking, I really like this guy. We share an industry in common. He's a huge success, and I could learn something.

But I'm having a hard time being a fan. And now, there's this blog post from a recent guest, on the episode covering violence in video games. According to this guest, the entire show was a setup. Yikes. I saw the beginning of this episode, and I couldn't make it past the first few minutes.

Donny - if you read this, you should really check out g4/techTV. Or talk to some teenagers or twenty-somethings. Or download some Morgan Web images for your desktop wallpaper.

everyone's sad.

Here's a graphic representation of moods, reported by LiveJournal users in the last days. You can choose and graph a mood from a huge drop-down list that includes amused, bitchy, bored, crazy, drunk, weird and other favorites. Note the sad, anger and sympathy spikes after yesterday's London bombings.

fastcompany newsletters

Yes, none of these are new stories to those of us in the blogosphere, but this week's FastCompany eNewsletter is a fantastic tribute to creativity - with a bunch of articles on CP&B campaigns. If you don't already subscribe to the Fast Company newsletter, do so by clicking here.

Links to this week's articles are below:

This Week: Ruling the Roost by Ryan Underwood Like just about everything Crispin Porter + Bogusky does, the Subservient Chicken ad campaign is risky and extreme. It's also very, very smart.

Fast Take: How to Cook up a Creative Chicken by Ryan Underwood Are "rules for creativity" a contradiction in terms? Not at Crispin Porter + Bogusky. Here's how they come up with some of the most imaginative work in the business.

Flashback: How About This Beer Label: "I'm in Advertising!" by Nate Nickerson Upstart agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky is turning advertising on its head, from business class to beer bottles.

RealTime: Successful Marketing -- Without a Budget by Andrew Keller In a session during the RealTime Miami gathering, Crispin Porter + Bogusky's vice president shares some insights on the agency's creative strategy.

eye to the sky

Something's going on up there. Two recent sky-oriented promotions:

Yesterday, the Goodyear blimp flew over our office. Pretty much everyone was out on the rooftop patio, checking it out. First impression was - "what a lame excuse for a blimp. Wear seatbelts? Go RVing? Those are messages worthy of a blimp?!" But then again, the blimp did get an entire office of creatives out of their seats, pointing, and yelling "blimp, blimp" (and now blogging about it). Effective?

Then, reported from earlier this weekend on the west coast from Defamer, a sky writer apparently got it all backwards with a Fantastic Four logo in the sky.

Here's a great photographic collection of old hotel signs, from around the country. Fantastic kitch creative inspiration. Enjoy.

the wrong kind of brand flakes for breakfast

These are always funny stories, unless of course, it's your brand that's become a big joke. Kellogg's has released a cereal in the UK called Coco Rocks - the street name for "dark brown crack cocaine". Yikes.

lexus launching podcast marketing campaign

Advertising Age reports that Lexus has signed a 26 week deal to sponsor podcasts at KCRW, a radio station in Santa Monica. The deal goes into effect in October. The deal is reported to be in the six figures, and based on a CPM basis (cost per thousand), where Lexus only pays for actual downloads. Lexus is certainly not first to market here - as many brands are jumping on board in an effort to reach a younger, hipper demo. It's early enough in the trend that marketers can reach nice size audiences at pennies to the dollar, compared to traditional medias.
Now your brand news diet is chockfull of tasty tales of Customer Experiences (CX). Served-fresh every morning for your daily recommended dose of marketing inspirations. Never sugar coated. May contain nuts. Archives | Look back at these past bites