Friday, 29 August 2008

Facebook the Movie - Coming to theatres near you!

Yes it's true, there is a movie being created about the global phenomenon we all know as Facebook. Aaron Sorkin, the creator of 'The West Wing', has agreed to apparently write the movie for Sony Pictures studio Columbia, and has even started up a Facebook group to discuss the film with users of the site.

It will tell the story of how Mark Zuckerberg along with Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes, three Harvard grads, founded the site, and how it grew into the success it is today.

It will be interesting to see how the movie develops, and I will be sure to keep you up to date with any news. I also wonder if this will spark any other spin-offs e.g. Google, Youtube (although i doubt it).

Thursday, 28 August 2008

'The Escaped Giraffe' By Elastoplast

This is the latest campaign by plaster company Elastoplast, running across radio and online, and supported by a funky microsite. The campaign takes a fun look at a child's little hispaps, by giving them the chance to use the full extent of their imagination, creating a story of how they came to wear their plaster.

The campaign fits perfectly with the premise that 'Every Elastoplast tells a story', and combined with the chance to win one of many prizes, makes this a great example of engaging users to the brand. The site is very user friendly, and the examples are brilliant.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Will Harry date Sally? – You decide!!

Yahoo have just launched the first UK interactive mobile series, based on the very simple idea of boy meets girl, boy fancies girl, and then thousands of people voting to decide upon their future together.

The series points out how a person’s life can be enhanced by the mobile phone, and the technologies now available. The first episode is available form willharrydatesally, but will continue only on mobile, with viewers voting on the direction of the series, contributing their ideas, and even scripts.

This is a great idea, although I have read many a past effort to launch mobile series with little success. I guess only time will tell, and with Yahoo in the driving seat, and the continuous launch of newer, faster mobiles, it has every chance of being a hit.

Dole shows how to make a baby online

Fruit company Dole have put together an entertaining but slightly creepy website, asking any potential mums and dads out there to see what their baby would look like. Using their Baby Generator you are able to upload photos of the parent’s faces, which are then combined to form a bouncing baby girl or boy.

This is a fun site, and strangely addictive, there is even a Baby Pageant to see other people’s creations. I will still stand true to my original statement, that there is something truly terrifying about some of the babies that people have uploaded, but is still a great idea, just be careful not to give your partner too many ideas.

Puma offers the chance to race Usain Bolt

As the Olympics draws to a close, and everyone has a chance to reflect on what an amazing games it was, Puma have created some additional content to a tactical campaign which followed the progress of Usain Bolt (recently crowned World’s Fastest Man). The site,, features information on latest sportswear and technology, and videos including Bolt’s led up to the games, opening ceremony, and races. There is also a game included which gives you the chance to compete against Bolt himself.

This is a nice addition to the current activity, especially for those who have been following the campaign, there is new content being added constantly to the video player which also gives users something a reason to revisit.

TES Launches Facebook for teachers

The Times Educational Supplement has always been a one stop shop for anyone working in education, with its extensive articles, features, and recruitment section. With online creating ever more opportunities for natural migration the TES has launched TES Connect, a social network for anyone in the teaching profession.

The website features everything you would expect to find on a site like this, such as Teaching Recourses, Jobs Sections, Lesson Plans, and even a very handy Salary checker.

Although this is not really anything new with sites such as Linkedin etc, already providing similar services for various industries, TES Connect is already claimed to be the biggest social network serving a single profession. With its clean layout, and endless resource, I can see this becoming a very helpful site to those it is targeted at.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

RSPCA launch Tamagotchi-style mobile game

The animal welfare charity, RSPCA, have launched a mobile based game allowing users to care for their very own virtual pet. Mobidog, hopes to raise awareness of responsible ownership, by teaching children everything that is involved when caring for a real pet, feeding, walking etc, in a fun and informative way.

The RSPCA website hosts a number of relevant pdf guides for anyone seeking additional information, and links through to other projects such as their previously launched desktop cyber-pets.

On first impressions the Mobidog game itself seems a bit dated, even for a mobile application, however the supporting website is informative, and the game is addictive. This is a very nice idea for allowing parents to show their children what is involved with taking care of a pet, and should hopefully give reinforce the RSPCA's important message.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Hoffspace - Just when you thought it was safe to surf the web again!!

The rumours are true David "The Hoff" Hasselhoff has launched his very own social networking site! The former Baywatch actor, singer, and star of cult 80's classic Knight Rider has jumped firmly on the user generated content bandwagon and replaced his MySpace profile with the website - Hoffspace, as his main way of communicating with fans.

Already catering for the needs of 12,000 fans, Hasselhoff, who is currently a judge on America's Got Talent, believes that the site can be used to bring users from all over the World together through their admiration of the Hoff.

For all of those Hoff lovers out there this is a must, although do not expect much more than a glorified Myspace profile. This is exactly what it says on the tin, but to be honest, who cares, the Hoff has a social network!! So in the words of the man himself... Let's socialize!

Thursday, 14 August 2008

WWF bodyslam Shell over 'greenwash' ad

Shell have had their wrists slapped after claiming in a recent advert that its giant $10bn oil sands project in northern Canada was a "sustainable energy source" according to the ASA.

This was protested by the WWF who argued that this was not the case, and that by expoiting oil sands are in fact promoting one of the dirtiest sources of fuels in the world, with a major impact on the environment. Although this was again protested by Shell, the ASA uphelp the WWF's complaint.

WWF are now releasing an ad to counteract Shell's earlier message which explains their reasons behind the original complaint.

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Wonderbra - D to G 'Because we're more than a handful' campaign

This is the new Wonderbra campaign featuring cleavage shots of thousands of women pieced together to promote their D to G cup range. The billboard uses 8,000 photos to form one large close up image of model Katie Green.

This is the final execution of an idea which kicked off last month, when Wonderbra encouraged thousands of women to attend an underwear shoot in London or to upload images of themselves in a Wonderbra onto the website.

Wonderbra have used the images to make up an interactive version of the billboard on their website, which has then been put up in London’s West End, allowing women to zoom in on their image, and have their 15 minutes of fame. What a great way to allow women to feel involved with the brand, and give us guys something new to put down as cause of accident on the insurance claim form.

Study shows the that children are human!

So a new report has been released showing that kids are influenced by advertising, however I suppose we’d all be incredibly bad at our jobs if we couldn’t influence our audiences, but wait, apparently now they are even more influenced by advertising than ever.

A survey by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) has shown that the influence of advertising and marketing in terms of brands and logos has become far more significant than five years ago. The survey showed that:

‘Almost 85% of teachers believe that the possession of fashion and branded goods is important to their pupils. They rank brands, friends and logos as key influences on what children buy’

‘Almost half the teachers interviewed said young people who cannot afford the fashion items or branded goods owned by their peers find themselves excluded, isolated or bullied as a result. They also believe that advertising directly targets children and young people.’

I’m glad that music, celebrities, movies, and television haven’t come under fire in this one. I can’t see anything different here than when I was growing up, but I am glad they keep telling what bad people we are.

Friday, 8 August 2008

Damn you George Sampson!!

Now the only reason I'm including this on Funkadelic is because i has a really random dream last night in which i was being chased by Britian's Got Talent winner, George Sampson, and an army of his BMX riding, hoodie wearing mates.

Anyway enough of that, i noticed today that break-dancing 14 year old, has struck a deal with Natwest, promoting their new 11 - 18 year old current account scheme. So firstly good on him, but secondly these online display ads, seem a little bit different for everything else I've seen from banking of late. I don't think they're anything particularly special, but think it is a great way of targeting the younger end of their audience (Plus it gives me that closure i was looking for).

MMMMMMMmmmmmmmm tastes like water!! are currently seeding a viral entitled 'Tears Of A Cloud', in which we are invited to look upon the untold environmental damage Mineral Water does, when tap water tastes exactly the same. Enjoy.

Batman: The Dark Knight Hompage Takeover

Here is a good example of a homepage takeover for the recent Batman: The Dark Knight movie, which just goes to show how impactful online display can be when handled correctly. Definitely worth checking out.

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Orange 'I Am' Campaign

I've finally remembered to post this on Funkadelic today, but have been meaning to for a while. Orange are currently running a campaign titled 'I Am' in which their TV, Press and Outdoor creative is pushing people through to type 'I AM' into a search engine. This is pretty unique, and potentially risky, especially with no other call to action or URL on the ad.

This is however easy to remember, and upon typing this into Google, Yahoo etc, suprise surprise there they are, top of the PPC listings, which then directs you through to their 'I Am' microsite.

The thing i like about this camapign is the simplicity of it, and yes, the way they have used the fact that most people start their journey from a search engine to their advantage (as oppossed to typing in a URL direct into their address bar). Although there has been some critisism regarding there lack of SEO optimisation, and the clarity of the messaging, i think that in terms of a brand campaign where your focus is not distracting users by other Orange offers etc (they may see by typing say 'Orange' into Google), this is a very brave and unique campaign.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

NIKE TV Widget

Here is a neat little widget from Nike featuring a collection of videos that can then be sent or uploaded onto pretty much anywhere you wish (Facebook, Blogger etc).

I think this is a fantastic example of how online formats can be used to enhance a camapign, and engage audiences in new and interesting ways.

Eva's nipple causes stir in States!!

In a recent US TV ad for CK's Secret Obsession Eva Mendez is featured rolling around naked on a bed, talking softly in a sexy tone. Now this does not seem out of the ordinary for a CK ad, however this latest addition to the collection of seductive advertisements features slightly too much flesh for US ad regulators. Eva's nipple to be more precise seems to have caused quite a stir, with a safer version now accompanying the rest of the campaign. Judge for yourself below...

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Fancy playing with Keeley Hazell all day long??

Well now you can with your very own desktop Keeley Hazell, The Sun's Page 3 stunner. Ask her nicely, and she'll ease you through the day updating you with up to the minute sport info, showbiz gossip and news updates direct to your desktop.

Desktop Keeley xx

YouTube to stream Olympics content

YouTube has reached a deal with the International Olympic Committee to broadcast clips of the Olympic Games; the footage will be streamed to 77 countries, including India and South Korea, in which digital rights to the Games have not been sold.

Consumers in the US and other markets where the IOC has sold digital rights on an exclusive basis will not be able to view the YouTube footage.

The deal also allows YouTube to sell advertising around the dedicated Olympic channel - which is expected to reach up to 200 million viewers - but only to official Olympic sponsors.

Cuil - the 'new' Google?

Over the past few days there seems to have been a lot of attention in the blogging community regarding the new search engine called CUIL.

So what is it? Cuil (pronounced "cool") is a search engine that officially launched on July 28th, 2008. Founded by a husband and wife team with a seasoned search team of many former Google employees, the site claims to the largest index of all search engines.

The main differences between Cuil and Google as mentioned on the FT Tech Blog are:
1) A drop-down suggestion box as you type your query means a quicker route to your answer and fewer page-views for Cuil - but it has no ads to serve at present.
2) A magazine-style three-column layout with pictures and fuller text makes a refreshing change from Google’s list pages.
3) Results are not based on popularity or topicality but intrinsic content. They say, “We are offering something that’s more about the content of the page rather than how much traffic it’s getting,”.
4) As Cuil does not care about popularity and therefore what its users are searching for, it does not keep logs. As well as saving a lot of space and processing power, this means it has unimpeachable privacy standards compared to Google, as it has nothing to keep private.

As many others have commented, i find the idea of Cuil very hard to get used to, and with Google now deep linked into a lot of our DNA it strikes me as interesting one to call. Yes Cuil seems flawed on many levels, but as obvious as it sounds this is very much dependant on what you are searching for. Cuil is a refreshing break from the familiar Google homepage, and the detail given on each search result is helpful. I don't think the writing is on the wall just yet for Cuil, and it will be interesting to see how the search engine develops.

Monday, 4 August 2008

The New Ford KA website - Viva o Novo

Here is a look at the New Ford KA website, a funky, cool site, which runs seamlessly, showing off all of the different aspects of the car in a querky, fun way.

On entry to the site, the user is invited to create a simple insect based avatar, which then follows them around as they explore the car. The site features games, 360 degrees interior camera views, and relevant video content which explains everything you would want it to.

The only problem i found with the site was that depite everything cool about it, this doesn't seem to be reflected in the car, which seems to be oversold slightly as the next big thing. Although this comment in itself is one that is clearly in the eye of the beholder, i was always under the impression that if you are cool, you don't need to tell people.

Samsung "Follow your instinct" Video

Samsung and digital shop Fjord have launched an interactive video series using
YouTube's new "annotations". The viewer is invited to choose their own adventure,
deciding the fate of a young urbanite armed only with his trusty Samsung Instinct phone.

This is executed in a smooth way, giving users something they haven't seen before
on YouTube, and so although we will have to wait and see if it is a hit with the
desired audience, it certainly gives advertisers something to play around with.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Flashtalking Online Display formats with "searchable" Google Maps functionality

Flashtalking's latest innovation has now made it possible to add a Google Map and any location to highlight in any ad format. Ideal for film releases, car dealerships, retail outlets, or event locations.

The user just enters any valid UK postcode, and it will appear in the ad. The user can search by postcode, scroll and zoom in/out exactly as they would with any Google Map. The advertiser can also re-design the location marker, the tool tip, change the map size, etc. You can even set each location marker to click through to a unique website page (making it simple to track the user journey).

The link below clicks through to an example for Odeon Cinemas, and demonstrates clearly the new format. I've found that this can be a bit temperamental with some postcodes, and looks slightly detached from the ad once you are exploring Google Maps. There also seems to be no way in getting back to the original ad (which on some video formats may be frustrating to the user). Still it is an impressive move forward on localising display advertising, and it will be interesting to see how this is integrated into campaigns in the future.

Believe - Viva Piñata

I'm sure everyone will be able to remember the Halo 3 'Believe' trailer, shown below...

Today this random response was spotted for Viva Piñata... Enjoy...

Street Art, QR Codes and Google Maps

The voice of the street have provided a service for street artists. Combining street art, QR codes and Google Maps the service allows street artists to communicate with the viewer and visa versa. More on this video…

The Voice of the Street from Leif on Vimeo.

This has been mirrored in a similar way by the rarely seen internationally famous street artist Banksy, who has completed a mural in a disused railway tunnel near Waterloo Station as part of the Cans Festival earlier this year. The large image of a knife wielding hoodie shows a small QR Code which decodes to Banksy’s entry in Wikipedia.