Angela Natividad's Live & Uncensored!

28 July 2011

We All Love a Cameo Ad.

Here's work that bounces by Sid Lee for Adidas' "All In" campaign. The famous faces and choice of music do a lot of the heavy lifting, but the production's focus on the strength, grace, sense of connectedness and power that animates the active female is what makes it electric.

I actually want to get out of my seat and go get streamlined to a soundtrack. Possibly in a hoodie. Although that probably won't actually happen until I get another back roll (nothing, in the end, is more motivating).

Want more? Visit the Adidas Women Facebook page. (Thanks to Adidas France CM Brice Mazenod for the linky-loo.)

Ad via Le Publigeekaire.

25 July 2011

It's Okay to Go Left Field...

...if you can tie things nicely back to the brand.

We all have a kid inside who's thirsty for stories, who's waiting to fall in love with a moment, and who wants to laugh. This walks a nice line between modern self-deprecating humour and taste. See? It's like the difference between a good comedian and a bad one: you can be ostentatious and provocative if you're hitting those deeper chords, but if you're crass just to be crass, you're shooting blanks.

22 July 2011

We Need More Stuff Like This.

Someone recently asked me if I am optimistic about the future of humanity. Despite dire statistics and the (anecdotal?) knowledge that people care more about maintaining quality of life than about big-context global sustainability*, I still feel that people work best at gunpoint. The worst may not yet have arrived, but neither has the best, and we have to traverse the former for the latter. That is just how we are. (Hopefully the wake-up call isn't full-on apocalypse, though.)

For as much waste and destruction we're capable of producing, we are just as equipped for producing miracles. There are some who say we are fascinated by our trajectory toward imminent tragedy. This isn't the case, and every little thing we do -- connecting with the world, self-organising for human rights, cooperative farming, purchasing locally, correcting wrongs, even advertising with greater care for both the long-term sustainability of the brand and our children -- makes a ripple in the sea of our collective destinies.


*There are currently as many people alive on Earth today as the total number of human deaths since the beginning of organised civilization: 6.8 billion. Is that not ostentatious?

21 July 2011

Bubblegum Love: All Candy, No Nutrients

Here's some pretty work by director David Lobser for production company Blacklist and MTV World Design Studio Milan (CD: Roberto Bagatti). One commenter, pointing out the jarringly obvious, has already observed, "inverted hearts look like ballsacks." The butterfly stomach explosion doesn't help matters either.

But it's still pretty work. I am vaguely reminded of Frito Lay's 2009 campaign, "Made for Each Other," except this wee :20 piece is less substantial. (Substance was never the strong suit of MTV ads, though; their stuff leans more toward short, ambient and otherwise without core.)

Your call as to where the actual bubblegum is.

19 July 2011

Audi + Bose: A Match Made in Minimalism

Today Bertrand over at VOTW bombed me with a bunch of ads I haven't seen, kindly catching me up after a short vacation. This was my favourite. For Audi's "A Big Idea: Condensed" campaign, BBH London expresses the power of the A1's integrated Bose speakers using imagery that pops hard and a cinematic voiceover. Both brands were served nicely. They didn't even need the full 30 seconds; 11 did the job fine.

Pack it small but pack a punch. Masterful work in a genre where little changes and little art is left.

Can't wait to watch and hoard campaign variations; it's healthy candy for the eyes. One last pretty pretty for the road:

11 July 2011

AdVerve: Spirit of 76

Play the show now.

Not just because it’s episode 76, but we were supposed to record over the Great American holiday that was the Fourth. Instead, work took over and we’re actually closer to celebrating Bastille Day as Bill and I kick it live and uncensored, French style.

So what’s new in this one? We actually cover a Wrap Of Cannes and my trip there on behalf of Yahoo! But wait, there’s more: Official French grammar watchdogs - yes they have them - why The Dude wears a bathrobe and why no guy outside of a Big LeBowski convention ever should. You will not believe the places we go. Or maybe you will. Listen you some.


- Paris Syndrome strikes Japanese
- Yahoo Scene's Cannes Coverage


08 July 2011

People Staring at Computers

"If we could see what our computers see, would we stare differently?"

Track the project on the People Staring at Computers Tumblr page.

07 July 2011

Google+ Could Change PR and Influencer Marketing

It's been awhile since I've written in, mainly because Cannes eats all will to live. Since recovering I've been fooling around with Google+, trying to decide where it fits into my life.

The super-short first impression: Google+ goes right where Google Wave went wrong. This time around, it's hitting all the right buttons, especially where privacy and ease of use are concerned.

Early on, adding random people to "Circles" (the idiot-proof version of Facebook's wildly complex Privacy settings), I got the sense it would change my web experience. Enough time has passed since that implications for marketers remain speculative but generally agreed-upon:

  • The +1 feature may change the face of SEO, tilting it further away from black-hat marketing tactics and more in favour of content usefulness.
  • Its ease of use and potential to scale will make the data accrued on it increasingly important for social media monitoring.
  • Content engagement is significant. It's easy enough to +1 something, but it's also re-enlivening comment culture. I made one comment today on a totally innocuous post and people from all over the sphere are leaping onto the stream, adding value to an article that would have gone unnoticed on Twitter, or that wouldn't have received much response on a blog.
  • This is a new avenue for influencer marketing. And while influencers may remain roughly the same, its unity of multiple useful Google properties will change how we treat content being shared there. To wit:

In terms of feel, posting on Google+ is about as easy as on Twitter, with a final publishing result that more resembles Tumblr or Posterous. Images and videos are beautifully presented.

It also has an advantage over such platforms in the sense that you don't have to work so hard at outset to build your community -- nearly everybody uses Gmail and is hankering for an in. (In Early Adopter-land, anyway.) Days after joining, over 100 people added me to their streams -- well before I'd posted anything, and most were people I knew and had already engaged with previously. That's a good figure.

As previously mentioned, Google properties like Picasa and YouTube are automatically integrated -- so if you're not already a user of these services, they are instantly more accessible. I generally favour Flickr and Vimeo but have already tested the photo-upload feature, which is ridiculously simple. Presentation is great and privacy settings are intuitive. This has basically made me a Picasa user overnight, and I'll probably use this for quicker video uploading and sharing, too (which will likely resuscitate my dead YouTube account).

I said in the title of this post that this could also change PR. When you write about ads and technology, you're heavily reliant on imagery and videos -- tools that help illustrate the merits of a product, service or campaign. Email is the traditional darling for getting PR messages across, but it isn't great for scrolling through imagery or videos in an intuitive way -- you usually have to leave your email client. And then there is the question of organising PR notices that you mean to cover, but never do, because it gets lost in your email.

These problems don't exist with Google+. (Not yet, anyway.) PR folks can write a quick piece, add imagery and videos in a snap, and publish only to a circle of journalist contacts (or the wider public). The publishing style feels like Facebook but is less ephemeral -- it is easy for people to skim, copy/paste from and return to later, making it more like Tumblr but in a closed ecosystem with great scale.

Then there is the "Hangout" feature, which enables you to video chat with up to about 10 people. Nice option for briefings, meetings ... or hell, just hanging out.

The main reason I think Google+ is interesting is because the barrier to entry is low, potential to scale is high and usability is fantastic. I can see people compulsively using this the same way they compulsively use Facebook, except they don't necessarily have to leave universes that are important, like Gmail or Google Docs. This is a bit like what Rockmelt tried to do except you had to download a new browser -- a small but irritating obstacle to use, which Google has the luxury of being able to skip.

It's also directly linked to the identities of most people via their email, connecting their social activity to their existing Google profiles and producing a broad picture of who you are and what you're doing on the Web. This also minimises spam inside the platform.

One critique thus far. My impression is that you can upload to your Google+ via mobile, but only from Android. That's not necessarily bad news, given that Android adoption is exploding, but it does cut out tech-savvy compulsive socialites who are anchored to iPhone or other smartphone platforms. Google's attitude is historically more open than its peers, so I hope this changes once confidence in the viability of Google+ grows.