before you get in a car tonight...

Remember that you're driving a few tons of metal and plastic at a high speed, and that can have real impact on real lives.

a fun way to stop looking like an idiot

Send this to everyone in your office (we did), and get them schooled on the 10 words that are embarrassing to spell incorrectly. This is especially important in the age of email and tweetdom.

If you're making New Year's resolutions, you might want to start with making sure everyone on the team knows the difference between there, their and they're, as well as your, and you're.

Pretty pictures and excellent copywriting make it feel like fun, instead of learning. From @gregverdino.

"i don't need to know what people are having for lunch"

Have a hard time explaining Twitter to your co-workers and friends? Has your boss tasked you with the responsibility of Twitter training to the rest of the staff?

Relax. Guy Kawasaki has outlined everything you need to demo Twitter to a newb, or confused co-worker.

Guy accurately points out that we're only in year three of the Twitterverse. It wasn't long ago that people doubted email and web browsing, and said things like “Why would I go to a web site when newspapers and magazines come to my house, I can see people in person or talk to them on the phone, get driving instructions by looking at my AAA map, and buy books by going to the mall?”

So take his advice and help your coworkers get up to speed in 2010. You'll all be better, stronger and more informed. (And you'll know what everyone is having for lunch.)

how to be prom king on the internet

What can Versace teach you about marketing in the social media world? Read this excellent post about Versace style marketing in a Gap world.

Mary McKnight explains that "The popular kids never give tutorials on how to become popular. And they never go out and sit down at the loser nose pickers lunch table and make them their tribe."

Haha! So true, and there's some outstanding insight that follows about building your brands with celebrities/influencers and the evangelists. From @3dpapergraphics

what everyone else is watching

Ever wonder what everyone else is watching? At this very moment? Here you go: all the videos being tweeted as we speak. From @mouselink

someone got some serious santa love

Check out the awesome post-Christmas outdoor work for MINI, in Amsterdam.

business cards for the new economy

Ogilvy has taken what Moo created and made it better. Smaller business cards that grab attention and feel unique.

Isn't that mostly what it's about now, anyway? From @gariphic

the future of magazines

Maybe you're already on the edge of your seat waiting for the Apple tablet, rumored to be coming out in 2010. But even if you're not a gadget freak, you'll want to check out this prototype from Bonnier, the publisher of Popular Science and other magazines.

You're going to want one tomorrow, and will instantly realize how the publishing industry will soon be changed forever.

create your own social network in minutes

There's a new easy-as-snap social network tool in town. It's called GROU.PS, which promises to be a social networking site where you can build your own social networking site.

It's true. I created a Brand Flakes group in less than ten minutes. (Join if you want, although no promises to keep this up - it's only for experimentation for now.)

This looks to be an awesome tool for smaller groups, non-profits and others who need to do something outside of the typical big box social networks. From @caff

what a geek wedding invite looks like

Isn't it cute?? Great design that perfectly represents its sender. Geekalicious.

television comes to the back of trucks

Sure, it all starts with safety in mind - see a projection of what's in front of the truck displayed on video monitors on the back of the truck. Drivers get to see what's coming, and the truck is no longer a visual obstacle.

But then...our lovable industry will take it over. And before you know it, you'll be watching full-on television productions from the back of the tractor trailer in front of your car. Imagine vampires jumping out at your car to promote a new film, or a new smaller car driving head-on toward you, to as an ad for the car. This is both completely exciting and totally scary at the same time.

how to make your ppt deck seem like a visit to disneyworld

There was a great story yesterday on NPR about a psychology researcher at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis. Aaron Sackett's research shows that people think they're having more fun if it seems like time is going by faster.

At your next client presentation, let your audience know that you have a twenty minute presentation. Only deliver a ten minute presentation. They'll walk away feeling like that was the most fun they've ever had. Well, maybe not the most fun...but Aaron's study proved that if people actually believe time is moving faster, even the most mundane tasks (and presentations) can seem fun. Interesting.

christmas with the cosmonauts

There's probably no better way to celebrate Christmas than with Santa, rockets, cosmonauts and outer space. Thanks, Devon!

alone during the holidays? bring cardboard.

Here's a cute story about a girlfriend who misses her boyfriend, and decides to replace him with a cardboard version. (Turns out her cardboard boyfriend is actually part of snowboard brand Neff's identity - a total win for them.)

that spam is real

Without question, the absolute best agency "client gift" ever delivered. Wonderfully inspiring.

pennies as a lesson in engineering

When you're completely tired out from inane conversation with your relatives over the holidays, here's how you can occupy your time: build an entire city with pennies.

Texas Tech student Mitch Fincher demonstrated how pennies could be used to build larger structures. The demonstration is meant to teach civil engineering students the power of pillars in a cantilevered structure - but you can do it just for fun. Or to avoid that awkward conversation with your aunt.

Who knew "coin stacking" was a meme? From @markshepard

stuff you'll need on the competing airline

If you haven't seen the JetBlue Flyer's Collection campaign, you'll want to check out their Facebook promotion. The site features a fictional catalog of items that you might need if you fly with other airlines. Cute, great execution and copy.

ready to give it all up?

Are you thinking that it's time to have yourself removed from existence in the social mediaverse? And maybe even go outdoors, and talk to real people?

Well, now there's a handy tool to make it easy. The Web 2.0 Suicide Machine removes you from Facebook, LinkedIn and MySpace (you'll have to do Twitter on your own.) Plug in your usernames and passwords, and the Suicide Machine gets to work, making it like you were never there in the first place.

(Careful when you head outside - the sunshine can be a little bright at first.) From @SwissMiss

blast agency people in the face with snow

Torchbox decided to create their own white Christmas, and to put you in charge of the snow. Watch their office streaming live on UStream, type your name in the entry box, and watch the Torchbox employee get blasted in the face with a bunch of snow shredded paper.

Different employees are on camera during different times of the day, which lets you take out your frustrations on them all. Holiday awesomeness for all to enjoy.

santa is ready to ride

What if your hospital was the one responsible for keeping Santa healthy, and making sure he's fit for his big night?

This is a most awesome self promotional piece for UNC Healthcare that is family friendly branding at its holiday best. Thanks, Casey!

keep yourself busy with browser pong

Since your boss is already on vacation, this is probably a good day to spend playing Browser Pong. It's just like Pong, but played with browser windows.

Your office productivity will never be lower, but you'll have loads of fun. Enjoy.

synchronized phones for your holiday pleasure

This is definitely the best agency card that we've seen this year. Hooray for engineers, coders and geeks.

blogs: now open for business

Blogger now integrates with Amazon so that bloggers can add anything that Amazon sells (which is just about everything in the world) into their blog posts.

Bloggers get commissions on any items sold, which opens up a world of possibilities for bringing commerce to blogs. Say hello to the new mom and pop shop.

a toy story for business

@charliecurve points us to a fantastic story about Lego, how they nearly lost it all, and then re-created a company to the legotastic brand we all know today. Complete with awesome photos of the magic Lego factory.

meddling kids to share it all on xmas day

The Teens Speech - My advice

Barnardo's, a UK children's charity, has created Teen Speech, an event that shows the view of the world through the eyes of teens. On Christmas Day, they'll air ‘The Teens’ Speech’ a film that features 13-19 year-olds spanning all backgrounds and classes, and intended to give the adult population a frank, surprising perspective on the state of things in Britain.

The film will be broadcast on the front page of MySpace, but things are already developing all across the internets. You can keep tabs on all of the pesky teens through the Teen's Speech Blog.

(Old lady Frank Stacey gives her awesome advice to the youngsters, above.)

please notice the scroll bar to your right

Google has released a tool that allows you to see how your site is viewed in different browser resolutions. The tool will likely have plenty of people getting nervous about their sites. In the olden days, people didn't know what a scroll bar was, and might leave a site, not understanding that there was more content to see.

Please Scroll (thanks, @tsand) reminds us that it's NOT 1996, and that internet users understand how to use a scroll bar. Three Minds has an old (but still relevant) post on the subject as well.

While some may now have their developers cramming all of their content into the top left corner of their sites, we suggest that the best tactic is still great design, great content. Produce both and you'll engage your audience. Even below "the fold."

that's not a photoshopped santa

Santicon took place in cities across the states last weekend, and there were plenty of Santas doing un-santa-like things for all to enjoy.

The best pic we've seen from last weekend features desaturated Santa, in San Francisco. Black, white and beautiful. From @loustejskal

your tire's all flat and junk dance remix talking tool

The Sutter Group has just taken one of the most annoying spots on earth and made it a whole lot of fun. You've probably seen the talking pothole spots for Geiko.

John Sutter took the audio from that spot and created a short little remix of the song (which is pretty fun.) If that wasn't enough, John's coworker Aaron Waldon took the remix and mapped the vocal track to the movement of the pothole. The end effect is here.

That's pretty awesomely impressive, but they've made it even better. They've created a pothole talking tool that lets you speak to your computer, and the pothole's "mouth" moves accordingly. Now you can be the pothole that you've always wanted to be. From @garretohm.

training 40,000 employees in social media isn't easy

You'll want to check out how Telstra is training their 40,000 employees across the globe in social media (an introduction is above.)

Their policy, which centers around responsibility, respect and representation (three awesome R's) is communicated through a presentation that is presented in the form of an interactive comic book. Cheezy to some, but it's hard to produce creative that resonates with a worldwide team of tens of thousands.

They've also put their entire social media training guide online for anyone to view. Why go public? Telstra says that "We have decided to open up this course to the scrutiny and feedback of the ‘outside world’ as it may assist other organisations and help raise the level of awareness about social media with staff.” Go Telstra.

That's an awesome, bold step that many firms would be scared to take. They'll benefit immensely from that action.

sears: powering parking lot dance parties

This is a fun way to demonstrate the power of a Sears DieHard battery.

Do you think they hired Reggie Watts for his last name, or was that just serendipity? Thanks, Seth!

people who hate 2009 given tool to cope

A lot of people really don't like the way 2009 came down. And a lot of crappy things did happen...

If you find yourself among the crowd that's thinking 2009 really sucked, then you'll love this Give 2009 The Finger epic production. From @coolsideburns

birds as art

Previously, birds could only be considered art if they were rendered in brightly colored plastic and placed in your front lawn. But these Starlings got together in California and put on a show that's absolutely beautiful. From @corvado711

facebook a boon for small town tourism

What do you do when you're marketing a smaller tourism location? Disney, Paris, NYC and other international draws have million dollar campaigns and just as many resources at their disposal. But what about Lynchburg, Virginia?

Plenty of smaller markets have businesses, museums, fairs and events all worthy of attention. Small Biz Survival points out that Lynchburg, Virginia has been able to use Facebook advertising to bring real results to their campaigns.

Display advertising used to cost thousands of dollars, and now they're connecting with larger audiences for just hundreds of dollars. Think your market is too small? We'll bet there's a few hundred Facebook users that disagree. From @brickandclick.

your credit card is tweeting

What if your credit card could tweet every purchase you made? Sound totally ridiculous? That's essentially what Blippy does. While at first glance you might ask "why would I tweet that I just bought socks?" when you dig a little deeper, the benefits of Blippy technology are pretty interesting.

This is a potentially useful tool for financial and purchasing analysis. Sites like Mint let you budget and see how your spending stacks up against others on a wholesale level, but so far, there's nothing that allows you to compare that spending on a granular, purchase by purchase level. It's also creates new potential for location aware social networks like FourSquare or Gowalla. Your credit and debit cards know where you're at, so that you don't have to "check in" using your fat thumbs on a keyboard.

Plenty of people thought that a tool allowing users to share the fact that they're eating a grilled cheese sandwich had no value. The marketplace says otherwise. Retailers, location based businesses and marketers...this is worthy of exploration.

the other side of people getting hurt on youtube

YouTubers count on the fact that watching other people getting hurt gets massive views. All fun when it's your own dumbass falling off a ladder, but it's entirely different when the participants are unwilling.

That's the point of this UK campaign that brings the viewer into the role of a cyber bully. The series of spots remind us that there's a person behind the egg on the face. Depressingly guilt ridden.

your best friend at the next brainstorm

Tired of brainstorming and finding that the perfect new product/company/campaign name that you wanted doesn't have an available url? Don't have time to press "enter" on your keyboard and wait for the Network Solutions and GoDaddy results?

Check out Instant Domain Search. As you type your entry, you're instantly informed of its availability. This is pretty sweet. From @mouselink.

honey, did you take out the recycling?

The Society for Design Administration holds an annual event called Canstruction that gets students and architects to see what they can do with a bunch of cans.

Thirty teams competed this year in NYC, and they raised 100,000 cans of food for City Harvest, a food bank, at the event. 100,000 cans. That's nice.

how to be the cool house in the neighborhood

This dude Ric hooked his holiday lighting system into his Wii Guitar Hero system, and the result is absolutely rocktastic.

it's not the lack of exercise, it's the soda

In a new effort to criminalize soda, the NYC Department of Health has a new ad that reminds you in the most disgusting way possible about the effects of drinking a soda a day. (Saying nothing about exercise, of course.)

we need more christmas bell

Improv Everywhere has another fun video to share, and this time they're ringing in the season. Will make you say "awwwwww."

talk to the moose reinvented

Ok, it's official. That super annoying spot for the Gap is now the spot that you totally want to produce a parody of. Admit it. You want to do this. Let's do it today.

giving the gift of facebook

Facebook should pay Chris Kieff for this great holiday thinking, and turn this into a full fledged campaign.

Chris points out that you have the skills to give a most awesome gift to a loved one this year. The gift of Facebook.

Think about how grandma's life would be changed if you hooked her up with her very own Facebook page. Not so that she could meet single men, but so that she can see what's going on in the family. Even when she becomes what we call a "lurker", she'll be plugged into the family happenings, see loads of pictures, and as Chris says, will enrich her life immensely.

Chris outlines everything you need to do, so that you can sit back, enjoy eggnog and have everyone else saying "wish I thought of that."

send this to your friend that drinks/texts while driving

This is 20 years of road safety campaigns put together in a heart wrenching edit that as Steve Hall says, "will make you cry."

history of browser marketshare, made pretty

Weren't you just looking for a beautiful graphic that would illustrate the history of browser usage since 2002? Here you go.

And ironically, if you squint at the graphic, it looks a lot like the Firefox logo. From @charliecurve

give the gift of fine hotel furniture

Like your hotel room? Would you like to give it to someone for Christmas? Now that's possible, with the ShopMarriott store. Hotels selling their goods is nothing new, but Marriott has taken it up a notch with ShopMarriott. They've successfully extended their brand essence into the retail space, with an online store that pretty much sells your entire room experience.

It'll be hilarious when you try and convince your girlfriend that you didn't steal her gift on your last business bought it online. "No really, I paid for this. I swear."

peeps go to washington

There's a Peeps store near Washington DC. An entire store. Devoted to Peeps. Let's hope that you can them pre-aged and slightly stale - at the point they taste the most delicious.

target rocks the pop up for the holidays

Target has created a pretty sweet popup event in New York, DC, and San Francisco for this weekend.

Target To Go are micro-Target stores that live for thee days only, and make holiday shopping easier than placing a lunch order on the value meal menu at McDonalds.

Each pop up store features a handful of gifts that you choose by number, and then purchase them pre-wrapped and ready to go. This is a grand idea that spreads fun holiday branding for Target, while generating revenue. (It's not often that your promotional campaign can generate funds to pay for itself.)

tacky sweaters for your digital pleasure

The Kansas City Art Institute is spreading holiday cheer the old fashioned way - with tacky holiday sweaters.

Their holiday card lets you create your own custom embroidered (digital) holiday sweater. Check out my glorious couture above, crafted in about 7 seconds, while battling the shakes from eating too many pecan squares. Thanks, Casey!

google chrome features told in video

A collection of cute videos illustrating the benefits of the Google Chrome browser. Nice work.

making art a tweet at a time

With a superior command of the keyboard, Tw1tt3r Art is creating individual tweets of art for the entire twitterverse to enjoy.

Each tweet is hand crafted with glyphs, symbols and other keyboard tricks to make tweets that are guaranteed to pretty up your tweetstream.

how to put your team in the world cup

People love tweeting about sports. Home runs, touchdowns, bad calls, rants and raves about their favorite teams, everyone knows it's more fun to watch the game with Twitter by your side than it is with just the TV alone.

Sony Ericsson saw this as an opportunity, and created the Twitter Cup. It's a World Cup soccer tournament of tweets. If you like a particular team, you tweet their name with the appropriate hashtag (ie: #twc England), and the team with the most tweets wins the World Cup. (The Twitter one, at least.)

cheap jingles for most of 2010

You've got to love the originality of this concept. This dude named Love (for real) writes and records jingles. To promote his jingle awesomeness, he's created Love Jingles, where he'll record a jingle a day for the entire year of 2010. His fee starts at $1 on January 1, and increases by one dollar every day.

For you - this is an awesome way to get some fun, cheap jingles.
For Love - this is a great way to show new clients what he's capable of while getting loads of others to hear his jingles. We're signing up for at least one. (Why not??) Hurry. Half of January is already sold out.

you can kiss anyone at london's heathrow

Now there's finally a reason to kiss random strangers that you think are cute. Just head to London's Heathrow airport, where they've hung the world's largest sprig of mistletoe.

gillette bloodies nyc

To promote their Fusion razor, Gillette placed what looked like bloody tissue pieces over the faces of men in other outdoor ads around NYC. Upon closer inspection, the tissue actually reads "Next time, change your blade. Gillette Fusion. Fresh blade, better shave."

The agency actually got permission from the marketers whose ads they tagged, and Gillette paid for some of those media costs. Everyone wins, except the guy who took it on the chin. From Quipsologies.

your cell phone could shoot 2012 II

Holy crap. Proof the iPhone is worthy of the title "magic phone." From @tsand

things like this never happen in our town

Don't you wish there could be a catwalk in every crosswalk? This one promotes the "flash sales" happening at Brand Alley. Awesomeness. Let's go shopping.

your own personal timekeeper

This would make for an excellent holiday window display, wouldn't it? This is video put to a fantastically awesome use...a timekeeper that works non-stop. Drawing time, one line at a time.

get your beard and a red coat ready

If your idea of a good time is to deck yourself out in red and white and then crawl from pub to pub, then this weekend will be Christmas Magic in NYC.

Yes, it's time once again for Santacon. Dress like your best Santa (or a Santa assistant), and get ready to roll with a billion other jolly funmakers.

Too shy? Check out the pics from previous Santacon events. This year, you can even follow the Twitter stream.

package designers: cut this out

Hilariously sad. When packaging goes bad. Thanks, Maura!

get your google goggles on

Google Goggles looks to be a pretty sweet new mobile app. Take a pic with your mobile phone, and instantly search based on the results of your pic.

It works on locations, objects and data, which opens some Googleicious opportunities for retailers, brands and other businesses. The day where you can snap a photo and then see someone's Facebook, Twitter and other social profiles may be just days away.

Development opportunities are going to be endless. Let's go.

branded versions of tweetdeck

TweetDeck is now apparently supporting themed skins for their super awesome magical Twitter browser. This is a cool opportunity for brands to extend themselves further into the lives of the tweeters who are ignoring their brands elsewhere.

clever wins every time

What if you only had $500 to promote your brand?

Len Kendall points to an eyeglasses retailer that implemented a smart campaign that generated mondo results for just a few hundred dollars. Don't you love it when people outsmart, rather than outspend?

you year in 30 seconds

It's not often that a news channel can do something impressive from a creative, promotional standpoint, but this new CNN iReporter promo is a pretty good: summarize your year in 30 seconds. They're collecting 30 second clips, and the best will end up as a part of their New Year's Eve special.

Now that we've all got at least 365 photos, videos and other forms of appropriate content to summarize our year, this is a great exercise. The challenge will editing. You only have 30 seconds. Choose wisely. Thanks, Morgan!

red popping up

RED has done an outstanding job getting their brand in front of shoppers just in time for the holiday season. They've installed pop-up stores in London, Tokyo and New York, and then bought aggressive outdoor ads to support them.

The pop-up stores look like awesome representations of the brand, and allow the consumer to see the entire breadth of product that's typically spread across multiple retailers. Smart.

bring some lady gaga love to your gala

Here's proof that non-profit galas don't have to be total borefests. In fact, you can have fun, bring on some sexy action and bring in the money. That's what the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles did. They had the Bolshoi Ballet dancing to a live Lady Gaga performance. Then they auctioned off the costumes - including a Prada Lady Gaga costume, and a Lady Gaga hat designed by architect Frank Gehry.

What they did awesomely:
+ Created a night of entertainment that was on brand to their cause
+ Created a true one-of-a-kind event that couldn't be experienced anywhere else. Anywhere.
+ Produced one-of-a-kind items worthy of auction that are guaranteed to generate megabucks

Can't you do the same for your non-profit? Do we really need another boring gala dinner with your city's Mayor as the star performer? Sure, not everyone can wrangle Lady Gaga, but here's proof that originality, creativity and fun can live in the most gagalicious non-profit galas ever. Give your audience something to tweet about.

follow that rabbit

The new campaign currently blanketing NYC for the new Alice in Wonderland production on SyFy is nothing short of spectacular.

There's the running rabbit (above), a detective agency, a tea shop, and a casino. They've even cleverly integrated show sponsor Kay Jeweler's into the promotion. And there's so much more Alice splendor, that you'll want to check out NOTCOT's detailed rundown of the campaign. Take the red pill.

bing does maps

Microsoft's search engine Bing is getting all mapalicious. You'll love the "bird's eye view" of your house, or the house of that person you're stalking.

MarketingVox points out some of the social overlays that they've added, that definitely make the Bing map worthy of watching.

who lives here

Here's a super beautiful visual representation of who lives in NYC, based on income levels.

a better way to clean your kitchen

I don't know what it is about this rotating kitchen, but once you start watching, you won't want to stop. You'll want to see each and every moment of mesmerizing destruction.

Don't you wish that you could do this to your neighbor's house?

deck the halls with tons of google

Proving once again that they are not evil, Google will send a printed holiday card to the person of your choice. For free. In the mail.

Choose wisely, you only get one card. Happy Googledays! From @krlmyr

the tao of tweeting

Mashable has a great post that applies the centuries old Tao te Ching to the use of Twitter. He's come up with some pretty taotastic advice:

1. Show versus tell.
2. Have a passion for the process.
3. Find a balance.
4. Focus on what you can add, not on the technology.

Great advice, and the entire post is worthy of a read. First learn stand, then learn fly.
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