who's celebrating marriage equality besides us?

History was made last Friday and we couldn't be happier for it! Marriage equality was celebrated across the nation and big name brands were no exception!

a dam good execution

Who needs IMAX when you can use the Hoover Dam as a projection screen! Freightliner, a truck manufacturer, used the iconic dam (and 60 projectors at 1.17 million lumens) to feature an audiovisual presentation that highlights the company’s history.

Why the Hoover Dam? Welp, according to David Giroux, a representative from Freightliner’s parent company Daimler Trucks North America, “The Hoover Dam is a wonderful example of ingenuity, but also emphasizes the role of trucks within the U.S. economy.”

Fair point…and cool execution!

ping your brain to achieve your zen

Let’s face it, marketing and advertising is harrrrrrd on our brains and our psyche! You put on the calming music, or do a little desk yoga – but be real – it don’t work. Hold up- there’s hope yet. Thync headset, a neuro-simulative wearable is designed to gain calm and/or energy! The headset uses electrical currents to ping the brain (at least that’s the best we can understand) to achieve the desired outcome. Oh, and naturally it’s control panel is your Smartphone. Sounds like the effects vary, but if they can figure out how to calm all of us nutty advertisers down – well – that’s a million dollar idea!

“make love, not ads”

As we are all well aware – it’s Cannes week (sigh – wishing we were there) and a lot of the expected is happening: fashion statements, boozy parties and gratuitous use of marketing buzzwords. But what wasn’t expected is this couple who decided to get it on, on the Cannes Lions famous red carpet under the “Will See You In The MORNING!” sign.

Even better are the social media responses to this ballsy act of luuurve (pun intended).

brand evolution at its finest

There’s always risk involved when a well-known brand decides to change its logo. We’ve seen it go verrrrrrry bad. But we’ve also seen it go exceedingly well. Here are some examples of brands that successfully evolved their logos to stay contemporary while managing to maintain their equity. Want more? Here's the full list.

may the force be with you

Move over Yoda – there’s a new Jedi master in town - and it COULD be YOU.

ThynkBots are futuristic mini robots that respond to…wait for it…your brainwaves. WHAT? Now the robots are not exactly The Jetsons material, but they can respond to very simple commands such as forward/backward and it can tell whether you are paying attention to it or not.

So is this the next huge Christmas gift? Maybe – you can get yours by supporting ThynkBot on Kickstarter. Now we are off to find our aluminum foil hat...

have a smokey bacon ramadan

Pringles and Tesco, if you are going to celebrate a religious season, make sure you are aware of the tenants of that religion. The above photo was taken in London. Even though no pigs are involved in making Smokey Bacon flavor Pringles, it's the idea of the thing. The Smokey Bacon 'crisps' have since been relocated. 

emoji science lessons

The other day Chevy sent out a press release that was written in 100% emoji. It was a neat trick. Using emoji properly is becoming an art form, and Bill Nye is working with GE to educate and entertain with this new art. The Science Guy has explained global warming quickly, simply and using tiny pictures in the way that only he could.

interacting on facebook... with ads

Facebook has shown off a new way to view ads on the social network's mobile platform. The new ad type gives you the ability to view a product in 360 degrees with just the swipe of a finger. Before you say, I don't sell a product... what about experiences, environments, or some crazy visualization of a cat riding a unicorn with rainbows flying out of it's posterior. It's time to get creative with ads once again and hopefully leave the age of clickbait titles behind us. 

powerful smoke signals

Air pollution has become a very dangerous problem in China, particularly with the youth, whose lungs and immune system have yet to fully develop. To raise awareness for this issue, clean air advocates, Xiao Zhu, projected images of suffering children onto the smog coming from factories. The end of the sequence reveals a simple sentence, "Clean the air. Let the future breathe again" to drive the point home. The perfect combo of disruptive, relevant, powerful, and well executed.

when words aren't enough

According to Chevrolet (who may just be a liiiiittle bit bias), the 2016 Chevy Cruz is so awesome that words can't even to it justice. So, when they sent out a press release to announce it, they used emojis instead. Clever, but super tough to decode. Luckily, they decoded it for you after it was out for a few days.

help, one tap away

PTV Donation Posters from Jake Barrow on Vimeo.

Public Transport Victoria teamed up with homeless youth charity, Ladder, to make it easy for Melbourne commuters on their way home help send one of their over 25,000 homeless youth home too. All they had to do was tap their metro card, an action they do every day to get on the train, on an interactive billboard and a donation was made. Simply beautiful!

beer, it does a body good

When you think of beer, do you think of all the great benefits your body can get from it? Probably not, but Carlsberg may make you think twice with their new line of men’s grooming products. Made with BEER! Apparently there are a lot of vitamins and other goodies in beer that translate into excellent grooming products. This could be the next best thing since sliced bread. Now that’s really saying something.

handmade billboards dripping with creativity

Literally. With water conservation popping up more and more, Denver Water is hitting the streets with these awesome handmade billboards to drive awareness. Made from all types of materials, the billboards really catch your eye and drive home the point of the campaign: water isn’t a renewable source, use only what you need.

like the rainbow, taste the rainbow

Skittles is always the fun, offbeat, funky brand that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Outside of the classic red flavored Skittles, this is why we all enjoy the brand so much. Well now they’re auctioning off custom Skittles themed items (oil paintings, vases, guitars and more) to consumers with the highest bids. But wait, there’s a twist. The bids are in the form of Facebook Likes. Sure, it’s not a ground breaking idea, but it is a very smart, fun and simple way to engage their fans. LIKE.

spray. on. condom. that is all.

Here's something that is sure to capture your attention - spray on condoms. Yup, you read that right. Michele Chu, a US designer, has developed a spray-on condom concept for a school project (side note: where on earth does she go to school?) But how does it work you ask (likely with some hysteria in your internal voice)? Well, apparently like a spray on bandage, but we have some SERIOUS questions about the ahem...physics.

gift idea for the ever-connected dad

While the video has us scratching our head (is it serious or is it a joke?) the TiFi is an interesting gift choice this Father’s Day. Described as being a mix of classic and clever, the TiFi is just as it sounds – a tie that is WiFi enabled. The device reroutes home WiFi signals to the tie and emanates a signal within a 10 foot radius – requiring all the kids to huddle around dad. We’d like to see Jim Duggar handle one of these.

What? Too soon?

sometimes the loudest remarks are the quietest

As we know – in marketing the pendulum swings back and forth often. So often, in fact, that you need to watch that you don’t get slammed in the face with it.

In the wake of flashy, loud, boisterous flash mobs (thank you 2010), quiet and subtle “drop stunts” are all the PR rage. The strategy? Build a slow burn of anticipation among consumers and then POW – the reveal. The most recent example is that of Universal Pictures UK to promote “Jurassic World” where a crate labeled with a warning, “Danger! Predatory Livestock” was dropped in the middle of London Waterloo station. The brand revealed the container contents which included mobile integrations, props and more - only after social media was all a buzz.

Nifty and clean says we.

bite-sized spam snacks

Remember yesterday when you were like, "I'm hungry, I should have a snack?" Well, Hormel has just the thing to assault your taste buds in to submission, SPAM Snacks. That's right, they are labeled as 'dried meat bites'. Hormel is touting this as 'innovation'. So, if you are feeling overly adventurous and are okay with potentially regretting a decision for hours to come, go pick up a bag (if you are in Hawaii).

ello launches an iOS app for who?

You remember Ello, right? It's the social network website that you probably jumped on getting an invite for because 'no advertising!', signed in once, and then haven't thought about again. Well, it's time to maybe think about signing in again, but this time it will be from your iOS device. If you are one of the people who have built a network of friends over on Ello, congratulations! Now get out your iPhone and go get that app.

purina prepares puppy parents

Puppies are cute. That is just science. But are you giving your puppy the best possible life? Purina has teamed up with Buzzfeed Video to show you cute moments between a puppy and a man with a mustache that drives to puppyhood.com. On this site you can get a free bag of Puppy Chow, read stories from other puppy parents, get tips for training, and how to keep your puppy in tip top shape. This is content based marketing at it's finest. Enjoy.

packaging goes virtual reality

We've said it before, and we'll say it again: packaging is everything. So what's better than nicely designed packaging? Oh, just functional packaging that unlocks a super cool experience. Recently Oakley Australia put their Pro Vision sunglasses in packaging that dubbed as a Google Cardboard VR experience featuring first person footage from the helmets of Oakley athletes, so regular 'ole consumers can experience what it's like to be in their sunglasses.

this is how you move a car

In the latest crowd gathering stunt from ThinkModo, a female meter maid decides to take things into her own hands when a cab driver refuses to move his car. Passerbys are (of course) shocked when they see a little woman lift up an SUV, but the reveal is made via the ad car topper for Car Lister, a new social platform dedicated to "moving" (selling) your car. Yep, everyone still loves a good stunt.

if offbeat is cool, call Finlandia Miles Davis

This new spot from Finlandia Vodka celebrates the offbeat in life. The spot features some of the coolest people you never knew existed giving advice on life. It’s an interesting take on inspiration and will put a smile on your face, but not exactly sure what celebrating the less ordinary has to do with drinking vodka.

GoT business cards shine bright

On the heels of an epic Game of Thrones season finale, where most characters had a bleak outcome, we’re treated with these fun business cards that represent our favorite GoT Houses (or what's left of them). Graphic designer Ed Wain does a fantastic job capturing the essence of each house and giving the sigils a modern twist. More here.

spam emails in real life

Some of the most creative emails live in your spam box. The makers of spam emails (not sure who they actually are) come up with very clever ways to grab your attention, but have you ever thought about what some of these claims would look like if they actually happened? Illustrator Hannah Warren has and she’s sharing her take on these ridiculous emails with the world. Seriously though, who comes up with these emails!?

who wants to see the sun set in Klyde Warren Park?

Going to Dallas, Texas? Ok, well even if you aren’t - you should pretend that you are and try out The Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau's travel planner experience called Experience Dallas. It’s a simple, animated questionnaire (think Buzzfeed but more polished) that walks you through a series of personality trait questions to determine the Dallas spots you JUST. MUST. HIT.

Please excuse us as we head out to stay at Hotel St Germain, eat at The Knife and watch the sunset in Klyde Warren Park.

clever, funny, but bad

This report comes with mixed emotions. A clever (and somewhat insensitive) Chicago Portfolio School student, Paul Feldmann, had designs on promoting his horror film, but didn't have the marketing budget to do so. Paul got crafty and used existing ads to superimpose bleeding eyeballs with the movie's URL placed in the center, over the models' real eyes. Again, clever (and frankly funny), but defacing someone else's work is kind of a (insert inappropriate word here) move.

where crosswalks meet smartphones

Once you read this, you'll wonder why the U.S. hasn't made text messaging walkways as ubiquitous as crosswalks! Ask any New Yorker how much they like getting stuck behind someone face down in their smartphone (yea, good luck with that.) Really, there's hardly a place where smartphones aren't used now-a-days - so instead of ignoring the hazards and frankly the annoyances of walking while texting, let's embrace it and do as Antwerp, Belgium does and create text walkways! It just makes sense people. It just makes sense.

nike inspires you to still watch the world cup

It's been hard to miss FIFA as of late, but let's not let the scandal overshadow the fact that the women's World Cup is happening right now in Canada. Let Nike help with their inspirational commercial showing off the US Women's National team preparing for the event being held in Canada right now. And yes, you are seeing them play on turf, so at least there is a little bit of a scandal still there to satiate your need for drama.

aldi wants you to buy cheap

ALDI is a magical place where you have to make a deposit on a shopping cart, only see one or two employees, and can shop for stuff at prices you can't believe. And a lot of people think that the quality can't be as good as the big brands. So what does ALDI do about that? Hire a vampire to show you that their sunscreen is just as good as the big brand. That is certainly one way to do things.

e-sports going mainstream, angering real sports fans

ESPN has a lot of media properties from radio, TV, digital, and print. This spring the sports media giant made a new venture in to broadcasting eSports with the Heroes of the Dorm event on ESPN2. This made a lot of people very mad. But, it doesn't seem to have deterred ESPN from embracing the digital competitive world with their new issue of the EPSN Magazine. Yes, it features Marshawn Lynch of the Seattle Seahawks, but it isn't all about his activities in preparation of the 2015/16 football season. Instead, it focuses on his play in Call of Duty and other games. Is ESPN going after Millennials with this new strategy, or just continuing to enrage it's existing fan base? And, like the Body issues, ESPN wants to make this an annual special issue. Good luck, have fun.

who needs romance?

If the popularity of the abomination that is Fifty Shades of Grey has taught us anything, housewives need romance . . . that and hot, steamy, and sometimes plain messed-up, sex scenes. So it's only natural the originator of such things, old-school, grocery store Harlequin Books, jumped in on the action. Check out their Escape the Everyday cowboy ad above, as well as this sexy sailor, created by BBDO Toronto.

good packaging changes everything

A product with amazing packaging can turn even the most jaded of us industry folk into complete suckers. There's just something about it that draws us in, practically hypnotizing us into grabbing for our wallets. Realizing this power, ImagoBox, a packaging design agency in Croatia, re-packaged some the most mundane things in their city, like bus stops, bike racks, benches, and so on. The packaging was not only creative and beautiful, but it also drew passerbys in to interact and have fun in a space that would've otherwise been boring.

good luck getting this out of your head

Ah, advertising jingles, you love 'em for their fun, catchy little beats, yet you hate them because they stay burned into your brain waaaaay past their welcome. That love/hate? Yeah, that's exactly how you're going to feel after watching this creative little ditty featuring Grant Woolard playing a montage of advertising jingles, on the piano . . . with the actual products they advertise. #sorrynotsorry?

beware of raptors

In an effort to make some noise around the release of the newest addition to the Jurassic series (none will be as good as the original), Universal is making a push to drive more awareness. They recently dropped a large crate with "predatory livestock" in the middle of Waterloo station to grab attention. People were definitely buzzing about this little stunt. Maybe this movie will be better than the other sequels. A boy can only dream...

blend in to stand out

Maybe Whalebone is on to something here. With a new approach to advertising, they're asking advertisers to create ads that blend in with the style of their magazine. Rather than featuring various clashing ads that nobody pays attention to, they want seamless ads that fit the theme and layout to get noticed more. This submerssive approach actually makes a lot of sense in a world where ads are constantly in your face.

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