News from the Herd points to a super cool visualization study showing the countless wireless signals that surround us everyday.
This is an eye opening visualization that showcases just how prevalent these networks are among us. I wonder if someone could do the same study showing what it would be like if you could see dead people.
If you're not a Lost fan, just move along. Nothing here to see. But if you're one of those people that wonders what the Dharma Initiative is really up to, then you'll love this attempt at creating Dharma Initiative advertising.
This is what their ad campaign would look like. In all its 1973 gadget loving, put more copy in the ad splendor.
Back in the days when Twitter was just getting popular, it failed frequently. Instead of an error page, users were treated with a sighting of the fail whale. Since then, the fail whale has become sort of a celebrated pop culture hero of the twitter generation.
If It's Hip It's Here has curated the most wonderful collection of fail whale art - from incredible paintings to lawn sculptures to...tattoos.
You'll need an invite code to give this a try now (don't ask us, we're locked out too), but Hunch looks like it might be a cool tool.
Hunch looks to be a site that helps you make decisions. Like a magic eight ball, but we assume (just a hunch) that there's a bunch more logic applied. Not that the Magic Eight Ball can't make good decisions. Outlook good.
From Steve Hall.
Check out this super cool animation made from individual Google Maps Street View images. Amazing.
Soooo many possibilities. Tourist councils, college campuses and city centers. Give real world tours of your neighborhoods. And we're cooking up even more ideas as week speak. Sweet mapalicious.
Advertising Is Good For You points to a post showing the story behind ten famous food logos.
It fun to see the history of the Morton Salt girl or Betty Crocker. I never realized how scary and uninspiring Mrs. Crocker was. With the exception of the 1965 Betty, I might hesitate accepting a cupcake from the others. Especially 1986 Betty. Pretty sure she's just a robot sent here from the future, to kill us.
That headline is a little deceiving, as the non-profit we're talking about was featured on the YouTube home page. But even if you can't get that kind of positioning, YouTube's non-profit program sounds like a winner. Add overlays to your videos that drive traffic directly to your campaign site.
If you're not already a YouTube non-profit partner, get all of the details here.
From Rodney Rumford
Today's Friday Flakes is taped at Plaid world headquarters, and is hosted by Justus, RJ and Darryl.
In this week's show we chat about:
+ How we're reconsidering the Friday Flakes show format. Does it provide value? Is there a reason to watch? How could we make this better, within a 10 minute platform?
+ The perceived work ethic at Plaid and the creative industry. People are usually surprised to see that we actually work
+ How Justus eats live babies, and is extremely dangerous
+ A poltergeist makes an appearance at around 5:41 into the show, and throws an iPod at the crew
We chat in more detail about our takeover of the Denver Egotist:
+ How it was a smart idea for Denver Egotist to initiate this promotion
+ The Mayor of Danbury, CT is possibly the coolest Mayor in the nation
+ We spent more time promoting the Denver Egotist in a day than we have promoting Brand Flakes in the last year
+ That more brands should allow fans to takeover for a day. Think of the excitement that could be generated!
Have a great weekend, everyone!
Earth Hour happens this weekend. Tomorrow night you can celebrate and "vote earth" by turning your lights off for one hour.
Or, you can turn your entire building into a candle, like they did in Sydney. From ANGUS WHINES.
To promote the DVD release of The Day the Earth Stood Still, agency Ralph produced The Trail of Destruction. It's one of those create your own custom video to fool your friends things - only this one utilizes Google Maps, and lets you destroy their house.
Thinking of implementing a social media marketing campaign? (Better yet: Thinking of staying in business?) Check out this excellent post on Mashable about control and conversation.
Excellent advice, and a nice case study featuring our buddies at Flying Dog Brewery. From NealStewart.
Here's a fun piece for MINI Clubman that plays on a popular concept for viral videos - but in a different way.
"You're a fake, I'm a fake, everything's a fake."
By the looks of it, the video is starting to actually go viral. Cool work.
KFC just launched a promotion where they'll send the Colonel to five major cities across the nation. To fill potholes.
KFC wants to promote their ability to fill bellies with fresh meat by filling holes with fresh tar. It's a part of their "Fresh Tastes Best" campaign.
Freshening city roads is a cool idea that's sure to make everyone happy. Picking up the cost will make five cities very happy. And the Colonel in road-working safety gear will make the press photographers really happy. Everyone wins. Let's get chicken.
Download the Colonel's open letter to Mayors here: http://senduit.com/bdbc8b. (That link will be live for one week, thanks to the folks at Senduit.)
Colonel: call us. You need a campaign site that tells the story. A big promotion without a url is a missed opportunity. We know people.
We've officially stormed their offices and taken over the Denver Egotist. Our announcement to the people of Denver is featured above. We are now the hottest shop in Denver AND Danbury. Welcome to the PlaidNation.
This is big.
We're taking over. Like a gaggle of pirates and ninjas banding together for the creative workers of America, we've taken over the Denver Egotist.
In fact, we believe that the takeover will be so easy that we'd like to take it one step further: We're taking over Denver, too.
As of today, we declare that we are now the hottest creative agency in Denver. We've prepared a video message that alerts the Denver population of this development. We'll post it on the Denver Egotist first thing this morning.
Check the Egotist (soon known as the Danbury Egotist) all day for our fresh content.
(Keep in mind that if you're reading this in the AM on Eastern time, that people in Denver are lazy. They sleep two hours later than we do. We can't actually take over until they drag their lazy asses out of bed and get into their offices.)
Denver residents: We'll need to change your town's name to Danbury. And our Mayor will likely need to take charge, too. We have a feeling that you're really going to like this. Welcome to the PlaidNation.
** This may only be a 24 hour takeover, as we don't really have offices in Denver and would probably find it difficult to breath their weak air on a regular basis.
It's official. Just to teach Denver a lesson, we're taking things over for a day. We'll be commandeering the Denver Egotist tomorrow. We're going to call it the Danbury Egotist, because that's where Plaid hails from.
When the takeover is complete, the Egotist will be chocked full of content that we've produced, and stuff that makes our city look cool. And we'll make all of the Denver people fly Plaid flags from their offices.
Denver can put it on hold. Plaid is coming to town.
If Detroit completely implodes - not to worry. We can all get cars at Ikea. Yeah, apparently Ikea is launching a car in April.
Either that, or they've launched a pretty fun hoax to get everyone's attention. Will you have to put it together yourself? With an allen wrench?
Check out the new series of Geico videos that play with legendary viral hit videos. They've snuck the googley-eyed stack of bills and that lizard with the accent into the background behind your favorite viral video stars. Fun.
To promote the fact that it's snowing in Tryvann Winter Park ski resort, they placed billboards in Norway that snow.
Someone at the resort sends a text message when the storm hits, and the billboards begin snowing. So people at the bus station know there's snow, even though it might be all warm and melty where they're at.
From Andrew Cherwenka, via Twitter.
On Wednesday, we're planning a hostile takeover. Don't tell anyone, but we're going to storm the offices of the Denver Egotist. We'll tie up their staff, commandeer their site and will turn it into the Danbury Egotist. We'll write content that's all about us, our friends, and the cool things that happen in the city that we'd like to one day call Plaid.
It's all going down on Wednesday. Don't tell anyone.
Pass this onto your PR firm, to your Brand Manager, to your legal team. Caleb Kramer writes about how awesomely Burger King handled the brand jacking of their brand on Twitter. While a company like Snickers does just the opposite and fails. Yummy.
This is a little scary, because it reminds me of similar stories about the micro economies within Second Life during its peak. Mashable has an excellent post on how the new iPhone capabilities could indeed launch a new mobile economy. But at least people are using their iPhones.
In the old days, news was delivered across AP machines. Like fax machines on a continuous roll of paper, spewing the news. They had alarms on them, so if there were a national emergency, someone in the newsroom might notice.
Artist/hacker Jer Thorp has created just such a device to alert him of important news. And he's done it all with a smoke alarm and RSS feeds. Amazing.
This is a cool PSA to promote the recycling of old computer parts. It's even cooler when you discover that it was produced in three days with nothing but a digital still camera and a laptop.
Proof you don't need mega gabillion production budgets to make cool things happen. Just an idea. And a laptop.
Today's Friday Flakes is taped in the elevator vestibule at Plaid, and is hosted by David, RJ and Darryl.
This week, we chat a lot about SXSW:
+ How David and Darryl were lazy screw ups and didn't post to the BrandFlakes SXSW edition as often as they were supposed to
+ How ATT failed big time in their ability to handle 4000 iPhone tweeters in one place
+ That Twitter has changed the social dynamic and it's now acceptable to ignore your friends while you tweet away
+ How BBQ and Lone Star beer are an acceptable diet
+ The SXSW awards show rocked, and featured a funny parody of the popular Chris Brogan "Open Invitation" video. (Which T-Sand had done an equally funny version, ages ago.)
+ Facebook announced new features of Facebook Connect, which will allow Facebook to connect to your iPhone, among other things
We also announced some exciting news about this summer's PlaidNation tour:
+ Ford Motors has signed on as the first official sponsor to the tour, and we'll be riding in style in a sweet Ford Flex!
+ We've finalized this year's route, and will be visiting Detroit, Milwaukee, Chicago, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Kansas City, Branson, Memphis, Jackson and New Orleans.
Have a great weekend, everyone!
One of the more exciting things that we learned about while attending SXSW this year was Facebook's announcement about their Facebook Connect product.
With the latest version of Facebook Connect, developers can produce iPhone applications that utilize Facebook logins and allow users to share experiences, information and actions with their Facebook friends. Additionally, Facebook Connect has now made it easier than ever to integrate their login into nearly any internet application.
One cool example: Twitter users who are tweeting with Tweetdeck can now send a tweet and decide to publish to their Twitter stream, their Facebook newsfeed, or both. You can also receive your friends status updates in Tweetdeck - so you can magically keep up with everything in one snazzy dashboard.
This has agencies like us pretty pumped. Think about the 175 million Facebook users. And know that more than half of all mobile web traffic is now coming from iPhones.
We see practical uses for nearly all of our clients. iPhone applications that let users play games together. Blog comments that are shared across a user's Facebook news feed. There are countless opportunities, possibilities and solutions. Let's chat. Let's get started.
Even if you're not a Daft Punk fan, surely you can annoy your cubicle neighbors by playing this Daft Punk simulator on your computer's keyboard. I say keep playing until you get a visit from Human Resources. From Ryan Kuder.
Microsoft has released a new version of that browser they make - Internet Explorer version 8. To get everyone all pumped up, they've produced this cute video about the history of the internet. Fun.
More SXSW awesomeness! Famous VC dude Guy Kawasaki, founder of Alltop, (the incredible list of all the top everything) has launched your personal Alltop.
It's called MyAlltop. You can think of it as the celebrity playlist for the internet.
We're partial, because BrandFlakesForBreakfast is featured in several Alltop categories. That's how the greatest blog in all of the land rolls, yo.
We haven't set up our own personal Alltop (definitely will soon), but really like the concept. I can see this completely replacing the old practice of including blog rolls (a list of a blogger's favorite blogs) on their blogs. Now you can accomplish the same thing with just one link. Nice.
This ought to be a lively event. Legendary graffiti artists put together against the cops who arrested them. We're guessing this is all friendly debate, and won't involve billy clubs or spray cans.
If you can't make it to see the live action in DUMBO, rest assured that someone will likely be there with a Flip camera, documenting the fireworks. Sounds action packed.
One of the many awesome things that we learned about at SXSW this year was the Social Media SmackDown. (We'll be reporting about even more cool things over the next few days as we finish decompressing/detoxing)
This was launched at the Mashable party during SXSW, with loads of robot fun. Some of our friends from the west coast were pretty deeply involved in putting this together.
This promotion pits celebrity teams together in a contest to raise money for non-profits. We like the idea - because it brings together real celebrities with pretend celebrities (social media experts) for the greater good. We also like that it promotes the charity more aggressively than it does the brands involved - which gives the event more authenticity from a non-profit perspective.
Oh, and anything with a robot theme always rocks. Always.
Didn't make it to SXSW, the interactive, film and music conference in Austin, Texas? Instead of sitting back getting all annoyed at how conference attendees took over Twitter for a couple of weeks, you could attend virtually.
That's what Todd Sanders did. There are thousands of SXSW photos being tweeted and uploaded to Flickr. And Todd's got a few friends here, too. So, he's created his second "imagication." This time, he's Photoshopped himself into attendance at the famed interactive portion of SXSW.
See how Todd joined us for lunch at the Jackelope yesterday. Or maybe you can spot him attending a panel, above. He's still "here" - so stay tuned for more fun. Hilarious.
Need to send a large file to a client or vendor, but don't have access to FTP? Confused by FTP, or not even sure what the heck it is? Not to worry.
Senduit allows you to upload a file, send a private link to your recipient, and give it a deadline. Like that. Simple. Easy. Awesome.
Today's Friday Flakes is recorded at SXSW, from the Pepsico Podcast Playground. This week's episode is hosted by David and Darryl with special guest Eric Fleming from Segway!
This week, we chat about:
+ FridayFlakes is celebrating our tenth episode!
+The cabbie that picked up David and Darryl from the airport has knowledge of a secret plan to replace humans with insect people. Eric got to ride in a stinky cab.
+ The weather is sucking in Austin, and we bitch about it like babies.
In the World of Social Media, we chat about:
+ Why Segway comes to an event like SXSW
+ The overall vibe at SXSW
+ How Eric plans to learn a bunch of things at SXSW, while Darryl and Dave are here for BBQ.
In This Week at BrandFlakesForBreakfast, we chat about:
+ The Pepsico Twitter mashup showing what's happening at SXSW
+ The Pepsico Podcast Playground
+ How people at SXSW need helmets, because everyone's walking while tweeting
Want to follow David, Darryl or Eric's adventures in more details? Here's all of the links you'll need:
BrandFlakes SXSW Edition
Darryl's Tumblr page
David's Tumblr page
Darryl's Twitter page
David's Twitter page
Eric's Twitter page
Have a Texas-style weekend! (Whatever that means.)
Pepsi scores big with their sponsorship of SXSW - and with this super delicious mashup of the SXSW Twitter stream. Even if you're not at the interactive/music/film conference , you can enjoy watching what's happening while it's streaming and graphing and making your browser look a coloriffic twitterlicious soft drink.
This is a fantastic idea that could live with other events where Twitter is prevalent too. Think of any major televised event, or other conferences. Impressive. I'm going to get me some man-Pepsi, right now.
There's some real interesting discussion going on at Brian Morrissey's blog about the Tide promotion that took place earlier this week. A handful of agency type people were asked to come to the P&G offices, and in a true Jerry Lewis style tweetathon, reached out to their networks in an attempt to sell t-shirts. $6 from every $20 t-shirt went to a charity.
You can see all of the tweets, captured with the hashtag #pgdigital.
Sounds pretty cool? They raised about $40 - $50K for a charity. And people were talking about Tide. Not everyone thinks so. Some consider the tactic nice wrapping paper for pay-per-post. It is a little scary to think of our Twitter streams clogged with brands spamming for attention. And donations.
This clearly illustrates that the rules are still being written. That there's no "proven way to use social media" to market your brand - regardless of what the social media "experts" may tell you.
And the one thing that still wins EVERY TIME - is great content. Want to let the the social media masses spread the word? Don't wrap it in charity. Don't pay people to talk about it. Give them something awesome, that they want to share.
Saul is one smart dude. And he's got a pretty cool business tip that is especially appropriate while we're in the middle of this depressacession. A tip that's so simple, and yet so powerful that it could have your customers loving you forever.
We suggest you find a way to work this into your brand plan, your life plan and general way of doing business. Just follow Saul's advice, and you can be spectacular, amazing and wonderful. It's easy.
Carnival Cruise lines has produced virtual aquariums using vacant storefronts in a handful of cities across the U.S.
The windows are interactive - if you move your arms around in the air and make fish faces with your lips, people on the street will point and laugh at you. But it will all be worthwhile because the animated fish will dance, or sing, or entertain you in some way.
The Whopper Bar is open! Burger King opened their first ever burger bar this week in Orlando. And another six to ten will follow in the next few months, across the globe.
Great idea. They're greying the lines between fast food and casual dining, while raising perceived value (and taste) of burgers. I love the interior design, but have a feeling they still don't sell veggie burgers. Cuz the King is all about beef, yo.
Advertising Age has an interesting piece on how Facebook is starting to drive more traffic than Google, for some sites.
Facebook already gets a little more than a third of Google's unique visitors in the U.S. (50 million vs. 149 million in January, per ComScore says AdAge)
How is this happening? Why do two gossip sites show up on the list of places that Facebook is driving better than Google? Because people aren't searching. They're finding.
This isn't about advertising or SEO. It's about relationships. Facebook is indeed the place people go to hang out and catch up with their friends. And their friends are sharing items of mutual interest. Like funny posts on gossip blogs.
So - how do you get some of this Facebook juice to your site? Create content (not a bunch of banner ads) that people want to share.
Check out this video about the Science of Watchmen. Think it appeals to geeks? Yep. Think it's made science interesting? Yep.
Think it's positioned the University of Minnesota in a cool way to prospective students? Absolutely.
How do you convince tech people that the Samsung SSD hard drives are super, super fast? You build a super, super fast computer. If you appreciate processing power or run a bunch of applications at the same time, you'll love this. (Otherwise, you'll just wonder what all the fuss is about.)
An excellent example of an uber targeted message produced in a fun, reasonable budget kind of way.
We're heading to Austin, Texas to attend SXSW! Maybe it's the bbq, maybe it's the Lone Star Beer. Or maybe it's because thousands of the internet's smartest, brightest and most creative people are converging together in Austin, Texas to share thoughts, ideas and inspiration.
Coworker David Plain and I will be tweeting, blogging, vlogging and photo posting just about everything that happens at SXSW - so if you're interested, you can share the experience. So as not to clutter up good ole BrandFlakes, we've again launched a SXSW Edition of BrandFlakesForBreakfast. If you're at all curious, check it out.
But it doesn't end there. Thanks to the awesome tools that the social media gods have laid down on us, you can follow our every move. Here's all of the links that you'll need, to shadow our SXSW experience:
Minute by minute updates, posts, happenings and adventures will be posted on Twitter. 140 characters at a time.
Darryl's Twitter page
David's Twitter page
This is a fantastic blogging tool that we've completely fallen in love with. Things that can't be summed up in 140 characters on Twitter will be posted on our individual Tumblr pages. Look for photos, videos, notes from the speaker panels and whatever else might happen.
Darryl's Tumblr page
David's Tumblr page
BrandFlakes SXSW Edition
We'll post at least one update daily here. Think of this as the big picture overview of our adventures, without all of the clutter.
BrandFlakesForBreakfast SXSW Edition
Going to SXSW and want to hook up with us? Check out our schedule with the most awesome social media scheduling tool, SCHED.
We leave for the big, flat state on Thursday. Stay tuned for big Texas fun!
San Fransisco is looking to crack down on flash mobs - because cleaning up after them is becoming costly.
Something to keep in mind if you're a brand, and you're planning to have all of your friends descend on Mission Street with mashed potatoes. Or shaving cream. Or whatever.
This would be totally awesome if it were a part of the Old Navy campaign. But it's not.
Real estate developers are putting putting mannequins in their new condos, as a way to show what it might be like if people were to buy property. Apparently the real estate market is so bad, and new buildings are so empty, that people need help visualizing what it might be like to have humans living there.
Holy cow, check out the traffic on that billboard. Russia's largest billboard - one and a half acres - now features a bunch of BMW cars on it. Actual cars. With working headlights and tail lights. Cool.
There's a great post on Mashable about why it's cool for all of us that big brands are using social media. Read the list and you'll realize just how much business has changed - and will continue to change in the foreseeable future.
Transparency = quality product = stories = relationships = community. Nice.
Don't you hate it when you're in real life, and you can't type FAIL over an obviously bad situation? The best internet lingo doesn't always translate to real life. Until now.
CalebKramer shows us the FAIL sticker. Buy a pack of them, and stick them on anything in your life that's failing.
But wait...there's more. Tired of watching tv on your 726" flat screen? Now you can get that small-screen feel with handy YouTube stickers. Put them on the corner of any old-school tv, and you'll be fooling your friends into thinking they're watching the internet. Fun for the whole family.
Now, thanks to A.V. Geeks, you can find all of your favorite AV movies in one handy place! Like that film the girls got to see in gym. Or the one your teacher made you watch about manners.
Even better - the A.V. Geeks will bring the video fun to your place! They're on the road, they're on the internet, and they're on the ultra awesome geeky product.
We like Lunchroom Manners, which has taught us how to behave more politely in the Plaid lunchroom. Found on Coudal Partners.
Sure, vinyl toys are cool, but Russian nesting dolls never go out of style.
Check out the amazing post on If it's Hip it's Here devoted to the art of nesting dolls. Or Matryoshka's. Or babushkas. Or whatever you like to call them. (I prefer babushka, because it's so fun to say outloud.
Being the makers of awesome morning creative nutrition ourselves, we couldn't help but share with you a sweet tribute to cereal that's been discontinued. Enjoy responsibly.