By now most of the public has seen at least one of the many creative Mac vs PC commercials. If you are like me I find them hilarious and very memorable. Already thousands of spoofs have been generated using a similar type of message delivery. The Mac vs PC campaign is so unique and memorable it will most likely go down in history as one of the best.
Microsoft however was not amused. After Vista failed to meet expectations and criticized across the board, Steve Ballmer, the CEO of Microsoft blamed the commercials for the poor view of Vista. Microsoft than launched a $300 million dollar ad campaign to fight back.
I find this “battle” quite amusing because the type of ads that are produced are only further affirming the image the public has of each company. Microsoft as the out of touch, big bad company that throws money to get what it wants. Apple as the hip young company who are well in tune with what consumers want and one of the best at marketing it’s products. I’ve summarized their campaigns embedded the relevant videos below. Definitely check out the Apple ones.
I am sure by now you’ve seen one of the Saturday Night Live (SNL) spoofs of Sarah Palin. If you haven’t, it’s definitely worth a good laugh. (And you can find some of the videos below on this post). Tina Fey’s impersonation is excellent and by all means looks just like Sarah Palin. SNL has been part of the political landscape imitating politicians since 1975. This year has been no different as millions of people have tuned in to watch Tina Fey impersonate Sarah Palin, the Republican Vice Presidential Candidate. SNL ratings have skyrocketed to the highest in seven years and the sketches have been seen all over the internet as well as replayed in all the major news stations.
An oldie, but a goody. Good Example of a very well done commercial. Creative. Original. Clean. Captures the viewer as well as highlight a product advantage (everything just works/ reliability). Enhances the brand image by associating creativity and cool factor. This is also a video that easily goes viral because of it was unique and different compared to other commercials of it’s kind. Enjoy!
We need more of these type of commercials that are clean and doesn’t sell emotions or feelings.
One trend that is becoming more and more common practice in advertising is to appeal to the emotions rather than the features or functionalities of the product. Rather than talk about why you should buy some product and discuss some of the practical features, many ads go about painting a lifestyle that you would want to have and placing their product as part of that wonderful exciting lifestyle.
Take a look at some of the advertisements below and ask yourself, what are they selling? What did I learn about the product? Did I learn something ABOUT the product? How do I feel looking at the ad? There are so many examples out there but below are a few.
Below is a video depicting the influence of parents and adults on their children. It is always amazing how much children are fully aware of what goes on around them and pick up on subtle cues and actions.
Though this video does not necessarily talk about media’s impact on children or our culture, it does highlight (though the form of media) that rather than simply blaming media for everything that has gone wrong, we as a whole need to take personal ownership over how our actions and behavior impact those around us especially the children.
As everyone has heard by now, it was later found that the cute little girl, Lin Miaoke, was lip syncing while the original girl, Yang Peiyi, was yanked from the program last minute told to sing from backstage because she wasn’t “flawless in image” according to the musical director of the olympics. The musical director said the reasons were for national interest and that the child on camera should be “flawless in image, internal feelings and expression. Lin Miaoke is excellent in these aspects”. “The reason why little Yang was not chosen to appear was because we wanted to project the right image, we were thinking about what was best for the nation,” said Chen Qigang. The interview appeared briefly on the Chinese news website Sina before it disappeared.
“What was best for the nation”. Do you believe what they did was best for the nation?
My first thought when I heard this news was thinking about what kind of message this sent to the two little girls involved as well as to the rest of the viewers. Yang Peiyi was basically told that if you aren’t pretty you can’t be on stage or in other words there is a limit to how far you can go if you don’t have the looks. Despite her incredible voice, it was her physical appearance that held her back. In an interview the General Music Designer slipped in saying she wasn’t attractive enough and had crooked teeth. This was indeed tragic as she is so young. What do you say to her when she asks why she isn’t being allowed to go stage but has to sing in a mic as another girl pretends to be singing?
A new 685 page report from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) backs the claim that smoking in movies influences children to smoke. The report is called “The role of the Media in Promoting and Reducing Tabacco Use”.
The NCI found that tabacco advertising and marketing is causally linked to increased tobacco use. It also states that smoking depicted in films and movies are causally related to smoking initiation among youth. There are very few movies out there where smoking isn’t shown as a normal part of life. Smoking is done so casually on TV and movie programs that it simply seems like something anyone would normally do. This is most likely old news for most people, but the rate in which smoking scenes are appearing in movies may catch you slightly off guard.
The 2008 Beijing Olympics was the most widely watched Olympics in history. It had all you could ask for. It had high drama, incredible feats, and one of the most beautiful opening and closing ceremony ever. I was completely in awe with the beautiful creativity in displaying all of China’s history and culture. Great job China.
However… coupled with such great display of the magnificence of Chinese culture, so was the display of some not so magnificent incidences. Lot of deception was carried out by the Olympic decision makers to put forth their best face. It’s a show, so much of it is understandable, but I strongly believe that actions the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) & the Olympic organizers carried out poorly contributed to its own culture and sent the wrong message to the very people they govern.
The list of what are being called “deceptions” or “lies” continues to grow. A wonderful little girl with a wonderful voice, Yang Peiyi, was yanked from the stage and told to sing backstage because the organizers wanted to have a more prettier girl, one “flawless in image” as mentioned by the music director, to be on stage. The new girl, Lin Miaoke, ended up lip syncing while the Yang Peiyi had to sing backstage during perhaps the biggest stage she would ever get a chance to participate in. CCP also claimed to have sold out the games but admitted later to hiring volunteers to fill up the empty seats. Organizers also showed fake digital fireworks making the firework display grander than it actually was to the rest of the world. Organizers also claimed and printed on their programs that the spectacular display of China’s ethnicity groups were actual people from those provinces while later saying that they were actually nearly all from the Han ethnic group that make up 90% of their population. CCP kept emphasizing harmony with its people while sanctioning away water and resources from the countryside farms to keep Beijing well stocked and pushing out migrant workers out of their cities. CCP praised the fact that the Olympic games were protest free while quietly jailing any dissenters and sending elderly protesters to work camps. Then there is the still unresolved matter of the Chinese Gymnastic team.
Clever play on words. Commercial by head & shoulders. Doesn’t really sell the product, neither did I remember what product this commercial was selling later on, but still – it’s good for the creative mind. Those who need to create can always appreciate the different styles.
As almost everyone would agree, media has a huge influence on our thought patterns and the way we perceive the world. With the presidential candidates starting to gain more press, the bias found in different networks and media groups starts to become more visible. The bias of the media is always influencing us daily, it just happens to be more noticed this time of year especially networks like CNN or ABC (left) versus networks like FOX (right). The way we make decisions about who we vote for to how we live our lives to what is right and wrong is built upon what we see and hear.
Back in September 2007, Gallup surveyed the American voters and found that 45% said the media is too liberal while 18% said the media is too conservative. I fall into the 45% category so there is my personal bias! The sad thing is most of it goes unnoticed because we get so used to it that our standards of what is liberal and conservative shifts over time.
One way of determining the bias of media is to look at the people who make up those companies and publishes the material and their contributions to the political parties. The following are total 2008 PAC contribution figures and where the majority of that contribution went. I’ve noted the more well known companies. [Facts provided by opensecrets.org].
Books, Magazines & Paper – $12 Million [78% to Democrats]
Motion Picture Industry – $8.9 Million [89% to Democrats]
Cable & Satellite TV – $6.3 Million [63% to Democrats]
Music Recording Industry – $3 Million [79% to Democrats]
Television Production / Distribution – $2.3 Million [86% to Democrats]
This is a updated post as promised!
We will do one better than most and do a top 11! In no such order whatsoever!
As a huge fan of art, design, and film, I decided that along with the articles, news, reviews of media I periodically post what I consider to be beautiful works of art. I will also post what I consider to be good clean, well done commercials or spots.
With the Olympics well underway there has been quite a few spots that were done beautifully and with class. With so much garbage that is thrown up in marketing and advertising I wanted to post a few videos that I personally appealed to me either artistically or simply because I found them well made. The commercials during the Olympics are often more wholesome with better messages than the type of commercials you would see during the superbowl.
Which one is your favorite? Got other ones you like not mentioned here? Please comment!
Sea Orchestra by United Airlines
• Beautiful. The mix of 3d and 2d elements make this video one to watch! The first time I saw this spot I was awed by its beauty.
A new report by Berkeley Media Studies Group, part of the Public Health Institute in Berkeley, California focuses on the different methods companies use to advertise food to kids. It focuses on methods that have become popularized in the last two years such as the utilization of social networks. The main concern is that though mediums such as TV are somewhat regulated, but the online world still has no true regulations. Junk food advertising has been a huge concern and lawmakers have started to move to present a proposal to Congress to restrict junk food advertising. One author of the report says “With social networking, marketers are getting the kids to create the ads and share them with their friends. It is incredibly sticky and it is viral. Regulators need to understand that.”