do I have to be the one to point out to awards shows that having jay z and arcade fire in your creative guarantees virality? try selling discounted canned peas.

hope not!

10 responses to “do I have to be the one to point out to awards shows that having jay z and arcade fire in your creative guarantees virality? try selling discounted canned peas.

  1. I think you’re being a bit harsh on the Arcade Fire piece. Obviously a song from a band is going to be more popular than a low interest product like peas, but what they did was fresh, well thought through, emotionally engaging, beautifully executed and unlike anything we’d seen before. I think any wins will be well deserved.

    Blimey, I never thought I’d stick up for a piece of digital work. Anyway I’ll get off my soapbox now. Toodleoo!

  2. oh i’m not being hard on the arcade fire idea. it’s a great idea for a music video by the hottest band on the planet.

    my problem is when advertising people think they’re in the technology business. we’re not. we just aren’t. yet random samples of whiz bang technology are constantly being held up as somehow advances in advertising when they’re not. they’re advances in technology.

    i just think advertising awards should be for things that a reasonable person would call advertising, that’s all.

    and i’m sorry but that Jay Z Bing book thing was just complete bollocks and nobody gave a shit. It’s Jay Z’s book. it’ll sell just fine all on its own. coz it’s jay muthafuckin z!

    but i bet it will advertising awards.

    like i said. try doing it for peas.

  3. I hate awards season. They never tie Awards with Sales. And that to me is critical. Old Spice was a great spot. Product was crappy, it still is, and was doomed to fail long term so that is the one exception where the Agency took the money but really couldn’t do anything.

    VW is going to get love for the Darth Vader spot. But it was a shitty commercial because it just said I can turn on a Jetta from inside my house. Buick torched that with the guy turning on the car from his smart phone in another city. Chrysler will get love for the Superbowl Spot but they still make crappy cars. It did nothing to change the opinion I have of Chrysler so I view it as a fail.

    It isn’t that hard to achieve fun and sell! Or is that something only the Escape Pod can do?

  4. I think we’re still in different places with the Arcade Fire piece. It’s definitely not what you would call traditional advertising but then I don’t think we live and work in a traditional advertising industry anymore. It’s an idea I couldn’t have done and wouldn’t have thought of. That’s what I like about it. What it did do was get an enormous amount of people to willingly send it on to each other and through that an enormous amount of people heard the song (or experienced the product positively). That’s all advertising can ask for isn’t it?


    i do agree with you on that Jay Z thing. Any idea that implies that it is creating a massive public stir but only works after it has been put together in an editing suite isn’t an idea. Budget over brains!

    Anyway, I’m off to find a way of selling peas using nothing more than meditation and a small, sonically gifted squirrel called Steve.

    • Rant,

      I don’t think we’re far apart on the Arcade Fire Google piece. It was a great idea for Arcade Fire and Google. Both benefitted from it.

      My point was that too often technologicial gimmicks and one offs like it are heralded by advertising bullshitters as harbingers of a a new day in advertising when they simply aren’t.

      And adverising award shows that slavishly reward these things do the industry a disservice and simultaneously display their ignorance of what they’re rewarding.

      One of the reasons we started the Escape Pod way back in 2006 was that we were sick of the big agency environment where digital was treated like some sort of voodoo.

      It wasn’t then and it’s less so now. We have seen and fallen for way too many digital gimmicks along the way. But we have lived the life as it were. We speak from experience. We have even innovated occasionally.

      And believe or not, one of our conclusions has been that we are very very much in so called traditional advertising. Becaause clients have very traditional goals – sell our stuff. And consumers have traditional goals too – give me value, add to my life.

      Put into that context, things like Arcade Fire videos seem rather small. Cool and all as they are.

      And I don’t use that the canned peas example facetiously. Most real world consumer products simply aren’t that exciting and Arcade Fire, or Jay Z or even Biz Markie isn’t going to appear in your peas ad.

      And it’s a fucking grim slog to get consumers excited about them, regardless of the medium.

      That’s real advertising IMHO.

      Everything has changed and nothing has changed.

      I had that meditation/sonically gifted squirrel idea for peas years ago btw.

      Unfortunately we did it as a microsite so nobody gave a shit


  5. Ah, but did you do it as a Facebook page? I’m envisioning Steve the sonically gifted squirrel having at least as many ‘friends’ as our agency has staff and declaring it an unqualified success.

  6. Vinny,

    I’m counting on your “findings” from Cannes.

    hope you’ll share.

  7. oh, your “findings” regarding our industry, if I may add.

    the rest I’m pretty familiar with.

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