Jun 22, 2011

BLEEPing Gold at the Cannes Lions

It's time for another blog post. And following on from my previous post on the use of BLEEPing language, I've found another sterling example.

Browsing through the winners announced so far at this year's Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, I came across "Holiday" - a 30 second radio ad for IKEA's Kitchen Installation service from Sydney, Australia.

The cheeky little ad is by Three Drunk Monkeys (Sydney, Australia). Radio might be considered old media, but a fresh and simple idea can still cut through.

Australians are known for having a strong passion for the vernacular. This ad speaks directly to the "mums and dads" of Greater Sydney who find themselves participating in the ever-growing popular national past time of home renovation.

The script for the ad reads:

TEACHER: Okay... Bradley, tell the class about your holidays. 

BRADLEY: Yeah, it was really good. My dad built us a new f(BLEEP)ing kitchen. It’s got wooden f(BLEEP)k bench tops. And some stupid f(BLEEP)ing soft closing drawers. 

There’s a dishwasher, that was a real c(BLEEP), and even a f(BLEEP)ing breakfast bar. 

Mum thought Dad was a massive C(BLEEP) while he was building it. 

VOICEOVER: Get a kitchen installed without teaching your kids new words. 

Visit IKEA.com.au. We can plan, deliver and install the whole f(BLEEP)g thing for you.

More category winners at the Cannes Lions are being announced through the week.

Jun 6, 2011

Remember the Alamo Drafthouse rule:
No %#@!ing texting during the movie.

The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is a movie-theater-and-restaurant-in-one chain based in the South-West.

Recently, they enforced their "no texting during screening" policy to a patron who was allegedly messaging on her phone while a movie was playing.

In a rage, the patron called up the Alamo and left a long rant that the Alamo has turned around and used as a killer before-the-movie PSA.

Watch the "Don't Talk - Angry Voicemail" motion text trailer below (*warning NSFW*).

On issuing the PSA, Alamo Drafthouse principal, Tim League, stated:

As many of you know, I really can’t abide people who talk during a movie. A couple of years ago I was accosted in the Village parking lot by a patron who was warned for talking in a movie. I’ve nearly come to blows more than a few times over the years with rude customers over the same issue. When we adopted our strict no talking policy back in 1997 we knew we were going to alienate some of our patrons. That was the plan. If you can’t change your behavior and be quiet (or unilluminated) during a movie, then we don’t want you at our venue. Follow our rules, or get the hell out and don’t come back until you can.

Recently, we had a situation where a customer persisted in texting in the theater despite two warnings to stop. Our policy at that point is to eject the customer without a refund, which is exactly what went down that night. Luckily, this former patron was so incensed at being kicked out, she quickly called the office and left us the raw ingredients for our latest “Don’t Talk or Text” PSA. You can check it out below, or come to the Alamo this weekend where the video will be playing before all of our R-rated movies.

Alamo Drafthouse's Tim League.
Photo courtesy Eric Kohn
Great way to turn a rabid complaint in to a warning message, Alamo!!

Jun 1, 2011

Naomi Campbell out-diva's Cadbury's "Diva" Bliss Chocolate

We've all heard the stories.

Naomi Campbell, world reknowned supermodel and diva extraordinaire, has a history of being difficult to work with. Her reputation precedes her when it comes to her shrift and short temper.

What you get when you google image search "Naomi Campbell Chocolate."

So it was only natural when Cadbury decided to launch a campaign for its new, luxuriously rich line of gourmet dairy milk chocolate bar, "Bliss", that it decided to compare its diva quality with that of Naomi.

Launched in supermarkets and newspapers in the UK by ad agency Fallon London, the ad leads with the headline,

"Move over Naomi, there's a new diva in town."

The wrapped chocolate bar sits in a pool of diamonds (which some compare to the controversy linking Naomi to the "Blood Diamond" case in which she had to testify). The ad then states, "I'm the world's most pampered bar."

Naturally, this comparison left a bitter taste in Campbell's mouth and sent her into a tantrum. She blasted Cadbury and the ad on grounds that it was racist. She stated that she is looking at, "every option available" including legal action.

Not A Happy Campbell
Naomi feels certain that its the color of her skin thats being described, and not her diva-style tantrums or supermodel lifestyle that she lives. She did not see the humor in the ad and found it insulting and hurtful.

The campaign also received a response from Simon Woolley of Operation Black Vote, who responded to the drama with his own criticism.

In response, Cadbury pulled the advertising with no plans to repeat the ad.

Whether the campaign was racist or not is open to debate. Personally, I feel that the company was playing up on Noami's reputation and not her race.

But I just wonder why Cadbury had to shelve and mothball the whole campaign. Surely they could have found another "diva" to help sell their chocolate - maybe with a method or angle that isn't so combative. 

Alternatively, if it was really only a one piece campaign that wasn't terribly extendable in its execution, maybe it was just easier to scrap the whole thing.

If Cadbury weather the lawsuits without any major compensation or legal bills, at least they managed to raise the profile of their product through some controversial free publicity (including this very blog entry).