Tag Archives: advertising

Apple have lost the plot

iPad 2 as a Video Camera

I have been meaning to write about those disgusting Apple adverts (yes disgusting, I was almost sick in my mouth when I first saw it) but been so busy, then Maggie reminded me at Hacked.io about what I wanted to say.

Fast Design write up pretty much how I feel

Watch the ad closely for me. As we’re told that products are what matter, we see a series of shots in which people actively turn away from life to engage with their technology.

  • A woman closes her eyes on the subway to soak in electronic music.
  • A room of students looks down at their desks instead of at their teacher.
  • A parent and child cuddle, focused on a screen that’s so powerful it illuminates the kid’s face.
  • A couple kisses in the rain, then immediately turn away to look at a phone.
  • A tourist opts to FaceTime instead of bathing in visceral, smoky yakitori.

In what should be a warm, humanizing montage, people are constantly directing their attention away from one another and the real, panoramic world to soak in pixels. They’re choosing the experience of their products over the experience of other people several times in quick succession. And Apple has a warm voice in the background, goading us on.

Now I’m fully aware most adverts are like this but frankly for Apple, this is bad bad news.

On top of that, the fact Apple are advertising this factor, is worst still. So much for creativity…!

Just to be clear the best adverts in this class were the Orange adverts, which never showed the actual device but rather the effect of the device. Now unfortunately Orange or rather EE have switched to another style which isn’t much better than most.

The technology should be the glue not the end point. However Apple want you to marvel at there devices. I’m not certain when this changed but its certainly changed for the worst.

Have to be clear I’m not against devices, heck if you follow this down the line you can end up somewhere with Sherry Turkle.

Our devices and software are great but I have to echo some of the thoughts about using your mobile while dating and dare I say it, some of the Orange Cinema adverts. Don’t let your device get in the way of a great time. No matter how pretty it maybe.

Its not going to take 20 years… Its outdated and shockingly backwards already…

POF cleans up and advertises in unique locations

POF on OKC

Well I’m hearing Plenty of Fun, I mean Fish is cleaning up its hookup image

POF is blocking hookups based on age difference and message wording, resulting in immediate bans, Intimate Encounters going away, 17% of the time we can pick the exact person you will end up dating, 70% of POF use is via a mobile phone.

Markus says, “Unfortunately about 2% of men started to use POF as more of a hookup site mostly due the the casual nature of cell phone use.”

POF have made systematic changes too… Directly from Markus the founder

1. Any first contact between users that contains sexual references will not be sent. Anyone who tries to get around this rule will be deleted without warning. This rule has actually been in effect since last month and it’s made the site so much better.

2. You can only contact people +/- 14 years of your age. There is no reason for a 50 year old man to contact a 18 year old women. The majority of messages sent outside those age ranges are all about hookups. Anyone who tries to get around this rule will get deleted.

3. Intimate Encounters will go away in the next few months. There are 3.3 Million people who use the site every day, of those there are only 6,041 single women looking for Intimate Encounters. Of those 6,041 women, the ones with hot pictures are mostly men pretending to be women. Intimate Encounters on POF can be summed up as a bunch of horny men talking to a bunch of horny men pretending to be women.

In short the vast majority of people will not be impacted. This is because the vast majority of people are not going around spamming women saying “let’s have sex tonight”. I can’t change POF alone, I need your help to get the word out there that POF is all about relationships!

So I assume with the clean up, POF needs to shout about the change… Shout about it they do, so much than you can see the advert on OKCupid.com, another free online dating site. Weird but I guess it makes sense, OKC is a dating site with a lot of daters on board.

Welcome to the world of the implicit

Advertising?

A while back I wrote a blog about how implicit data is the dark matter to the explicit. I also write about it in my wired/tired/expired post.

Well I thought its about time I started writing why the implicit is so rich and may become the dominating model in the future. Of course if you know anything about me and the BBC R&D project Perceptive Media, I have an interest in this area, I actually talked about context before but didn’t really make it clear that context is a part of the implicit dataset.

It started with personalised ads, currently sits with Google Now and ends with the end of internet advertising as a thing.

Yes I said it… The end of advertising… (which isn’t the same as the end of marketing btw)

Most people now prefer targeted advertising than wholesale advertising but hate the idea of minority report’s advertising nightmare. What was missing was the context.

Duhhh… In the future, surely a smart advert wouldn’t show tom cruise cars and expensive gifts while he was running down the shopping centre trying to escape. Yes it sounds pretty dumb when you add the context to the scene. Maybe showing Tom visions of holidays and trainers would make much more sense.

The end of advertising might seem a little premature but look at Google now. Then imagine Google now serving up adverts instead…

Double Duhhh… of course Google will be using the same algorithm to serve adverts if it can be proven to be even a slight bit more effective.

Although its far from perfect, the fact is with enough data and a insight into your context and implicit motivations. Google really can start to serve up adverts for things I want before I realise I actually want it (sounds freakish but its already happening). And if that fills you with fear, you better get ready as its not easily stopped. This might rely on the likes of our government not being greedy and short sighted, actually reflect the good of the people who put them there.

I’m thinking about a future where its too expensive and too inefficient to do the mass/wholesale advertising…A future where adblockers and VRM – Vendor Relationship Management is the norm, people pay to never see the adverts not targeted at you. Yes a bit of a dream but you got to dream a little bigger darling.

I have been using the term, Micro Data which is a specific part of the Big Data puzzle. Micro data is the implicit data, the data which is personal and we generate all the time. Its that Microdata which will power the next generation of services, apps and products. You can clearly see why I’m at the Quantified Self conference

The things Hugh Garry says

Recently Hugh Garry has been writing in his blog more often than usual. Not sure what has prompted him but he’s writing some amazing stuff. Everytime I read something I want to comment or blog it straight away, but I’ve decided to take a few bits and comment on them here.

From Rules of watching a movie

Switching ‘on’ your phone during a movie is something that the film industry is going to have to get used to. It’s a new rule of cinema – people like to share their lives and that includes capturing screen shots of the film they are watching – it’s happening and it’s creating spreadable media.

I hate it when people turn on there phone so you can see the glow of their screens in the darken cinema but love it or hate it, its not going away. Its actually spreading.

I watched Argo yesterday as part of the salford cinema club. In the darken cinema, you could see people sharing thoughts and the like. Ok no one was pointing the phone at the screen but they might as well have. I really wanted to capture the new anti-piracy advert because I kid you not most of the cinema was laughing out loud when it came on the screen. At that moment I had to resist the instant temptation to tweet it.

Capturing the anti-piracy advert surely can’t be bad? Its not like I paid to watch this propaganda. In fact it leads nicely on to Hugh’s next blog…

From Banksy on Advertising

On Friday night I stumbled upon this great quote from Banksy on advertising via the excellent The Fox is Black. Wish I’d had it in time for the lecture.

“People are taking the piss out of you everyday. They butt into your life, take a cheap shot at you and then disappear. They leer at you from tall buildings and make you feel small. They make flippant comments from buses that imply you’re not sexy enough and that all the fun is happening somewhere else. They are on TV making your girlfriend feel inadequate. They have access to the most sophisticated technology the world has ever seen and they bully you with it. They are The Advertisers and they are laughing at you.

You, however, are forbidden to touch them. Trademarks, intellectual property rights and copyright law mean advertisers can say what they like wherever they like with total impunity.

Fuck that. Any advert in a public space that gives you no choice whether you see it or not is yours. It’s yours to take, re-arrange and re-use. You can do whatever you like with it. Asking for permission is like asking to keep a rock someone just threw at your head.

You owe the companies nothing. Less than nothing, you especially don’t owe them any courtesy. They owe you. They have re-arranged the world to put themselves in front of you. They never asked for your permission, don’t even start asking for theirs. Banksy”

Hugh and ultimately Bankey is right. F them. I’m sure I mentioned somewhere how growing up in Bristol. Clever defacements of public advertising was a everyday thing. It wasn’t just Banksy doing it, everyone was doing it. It was just a way of life. It wasn’t till I moved to London, that I noticed it was a uniquely Bristol thing.

Bristol has always been a counter-cultural city and the counter advertising has always had a big role. They are less a cheap shot and more a highly educated shot at some entities which need cutting down to size.

These entities are not above the law and specially above the law of common sense. No one is… The moment they think they are, things start to break down and get really ugly. I won’t mention the serious stuff which is happening about now.

Hugh’s Popup ideas shop concept is really interesting… and the weird thing is, I think I’ve been doing it without noticing.

I’m running a series of pop-up idea shops in Manchester and London. It’s not really a shop – more like me at a table in a cafe with an empty chair waiting to be filled. It’s free ideas for anyone who needs them. I’ve never done it before, and I don’t know if anyone else does them, but I’m giving it a go to see what happens.

So here’s the idea…

This Friday (November 16th) between 1pm and 4pm I’ll be sat at a table in Fyg on Tibb Street in the Northern Quarter, Manchester. If you need ideas, a new perspective or a fresh set of ears for whatever you’re working on then do drop in. You might be taking your first steps in digital or social media and don’t know where to start. You may need help shaping the story of your brand – come say hello. There’s no charge for this. I may be able to help you or I may not. Either way I’m happy to have a brew with someone new if you are.

I tend to push all my adhoc meetings to Fridays in the northern quarter. Some of the discussions are very relevant to my work in the BBC and sometimes its less so.

Of course FYG deli is a great place to do it and I’ll be there enjoying a deli platter and meeting with a few people while I sort out a few things to do with Perceptive Media.

Maybe I’ll sit next to Hugh to keep him company in between the quiet times.

Teresa Valdez Klein – The Art of Subvertising on Facebook

Teresa Valdez Klein is simply amazing for what she did with subverting advertising to tell people actually they are great and don’t need to conform to be great. In this Seattle ignite talk, she outlines her story and what drove her to do it. This is a must watch…

All of us have been conditioned from birth by our families, our friends, and marketers to want (or not want) certain things. And while I’m a big fan of Facebook, I have this theory that it reinforces social conditioning in some pretty insidious ways.
In this talk, I’ll explain how I used Facebook’s self-serve advertising platform to combat the social pressure cooker.

Inspirational… and bloody marvellous…!

Shes so right, being previously on the path to the dream family setup. Its hard for people to understand why you wouldn’t want what they have. Each person puts a tiny piece of social pressure on you, without even knowing it. But what really hurts is the constant hammering that your not this, your not that which advertising can deliver with sometimes devastating effects.

It take a very strong person to reject all this… But even better is when you can inspire others that actually they are great and will become amazing in there own right.

This is also why I love iamido.info

The best advert of 2010: Old Spice vs Thinkbox

Interesting the differences and between the number one voted adverts of 2010 online and offline. For me the Old Spice advert was extremely clever and certainly does something very different while the Thinkbox advert is what you would expect from TV advertising, fun, entertaining but thats it. Of course I’ve also not included the follow up ads for old spice which made the whole thing so much more interesting for us all.

The best of the web advertising, The Old Spice Advert

The best of TV advertising, Every home needs a harvey Advert

The boiler room battle of the highstreet retailers

Boiler room

This is a aledged memo to Best Buy staff. Best buy is like PC World in the UK but much cheaper. Even if its not quite real (I certainly think it is) its not uncommon in retail. I remember working at Starbucks, Showcase Cinemas and a few other retailers and having very simular type advice from managers and head office memos. A little while ago Best Buy also got into trouble recently for this and this last year.
Enjoy the “secret to screw you” memo, the boiler room style. Don't forget to check out the comments too.

1) Introduce the PSP (product service plan) in your presentation. Do not wait till the end.

Ex.
Sales Associate: I understand your daughter is going off to college, and while she'll be away we offer a protection plan that will cover anything that goes wrong with her computer/laptop.
Customer: No, I'm not interested

SA: Well it's something that you really should look into. Because if anything were ever to go wrong with your daughters computer she would have to take it in to be repaired. To give you an estimate, we charged $60/hr to decide what is wrong with it and $80/hr to fix it not including additional parts that may be needed.

C: I really don't need that, doesn't the computer come with a warranty.

S: Well that's a good question. This computer comes with a 6 month warranty but does not cover parts. Know here is a side by side comparison of what we cover and what the manufacturer covers.( hand customer comparison sheet and fill it out in front of him/her).

C: Ok, but I'm really not interested I just want the computer.

S: Are you sure, because you are really passing up a great deal here, if something ever happens while your daughter is away she could have no computer for up to a month.

C:No, I'm sure.

*1*At this time make sure to sell at least 3 accessories and if it is a laptop make sure to offer a bundle deal and a Platinum PSP**

*2*Once you have successfully added at least 3 accessories to the sale take the customer to a mobile register away from the floor traffic.**

*3*Since you Have been unsuccessful selling the Service Plan, Have another associate go with you to “help you” ring up the sale.**

*4*The other associate will help you tag team the customer. The other associates job at this point is to point out how amazing the computer is and what a great deal it is. Once you scan the computer/laptop the Kiosk will ask you if the customer wants the Service Plan. The accompanying sales associate will say, “hey did 'Joe' tell you about the Service Plan that covers anything that may go wrong with your computer…?**

*5* If your accompanying associate is unable to get the Service Plan then you must say, “I'm sorry I'm new here and there seems to be something wrong with my kiosk, I'll be right back with my supervisor and he will be able to fix it.”**

*6* You return with your Supervisor, and now You, the accompanying associate and your supervisor Tag Team the Customer Once again until the Service Plan is accepted by the Customer.**

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