January 16, 2008
Well, Australia Day is almost here again. This means that Sam Kekovich is once again gracing our screens plugging meat in his annual Australia Day address.
This year sees him sitting at his desk in many various picturesque locations throughout Australia, whilst a choir of children sing in the background. Think Qantas ‘I Still Call Australia Home’ advertisements.
The spot got a bit of press mainly because of the Helen Clarke jibe. “Even APEC gets a week. But that’s just a bunch of blokes in funny shirts. Apart from Helen Clarke, who does a passable impersonation of a bloke anyway.”
The main contention of the ad is that Mr Kekovich wants an Australia Week, not just one day. i.e. 7 times the amount of lamb eating opportunities.
I’ll be honest, I’m not the biggest fan of this dude. I find him quite annoying. These Australia Day lamb advertisements basically play off his old controversial monologues “You know it makes sense. I’m Sam Kekovich.” There’s only so much yelling I can take from ageing shock jocks..
Check it if you like to be yelled at..
And here’s the narrative..
My fellow Australians, it is my solemn duty to inform you that it’s time to abolish Australia Day.
Our annual lamb-fest hasn’t stopped unAustralianism racing through the land like horse-flu through a Japanese jockey club.
For example, if I see another binge-drinking, pill-popping, powder-sniffing footballer making a tearful television apology – I’ll blow a fuse.
Australia Day has had its day. We need Australia week. A 7-day lambathon to properly celebrate our great nation. Instead of one public holiday, we need seven. Instead of one lamb barbie we need 21 lamb meal opportunities – not including snacks. Which imbecile thought one day was long enough anyway.
Look at the Olympics, Octoberfest, the Turkish Oil Wrestling Festival. Even APEC gets a week. But that’s just a bunch of blokes in funny shirts. Apart from Helen Clarke, who does a passable impersonation of a bloke anyway.
The placard-waving, police-bashing, weed worshippers may protest about it, but it’s nothing a few blasts from a water cannon can’t fix. They could do with a wash. And if they’re still too unAustralian to chomp a few chops with the rest of us, send them to Nauru. The refugee protesting centre has plenty of palm trees they can hug.
I’ll be petitioning our new PM to officially recognise Australia Week. If you still call Australia home, stack the fridge full of lamb, take the week off and celebrate with me. Any boss that won’t let you is a bum. Just chuck a week of sickies instead. What could be more Australian than that?
So don’t be unAustralian, serve lamb this Australia Week. You know it makes sense. I’m Sam Kekovich.
December 11, 2007
The new Victoria Bitter has hit our screens in time for the summer cricket season proper. Following on from the popular Boonie and Beefy dolls of last year and the original Boonie doll the year prior, VB have created a Warnie doll.
The Warnie ad begins with Mr and Mrs Warne giving birth to the great man Shane – all played by Shane himself. The narration begins – “A hard earned thirst needs a big cold beer and we’d like to raise one right now, to Australia’s favourite son – Warnie. Yep, when it came to tormenting the top order, Shane had ’em by the balls.” Cut to a shot of two insane batsmen in a padded cell.
Mr and Mrs Warne
“Sure, his middle name may be Keith, but the Sultan of Spin could get almost anything to turn.” As a shot appears of Boonie drinking in the pub dressed up in green and gold drag. “Now the great man may have hung up the box. But we can still toast him with an ice cold beer and the best cold beer is VB.”
Apart from it being another great ad, the main thing that stood out to me with this piece was the last word (letters) spoken – VB. The slogan is/was “and the best cold beer is Vic.” Is this some sort of new branding rule in all advertising communications?
The advertisement was created by GPY&R Melbourne with creative direction from Ben Coulson and production by Prodigy Films.
Check out the ad:
Check out the website for more information about obtaining your own Warnie doll – vbwarnie.com.au
November 12, 2007
Ford have produced a couple of cheeky cricket advertisements to plug their Backyard Series Cricket promotion. The two advertisements feature current Australian cricketers Matthew Hayden, Michael Clarke, Andrew Symonds and Michael Hussey.
The first spot, entitled ‘Whose Rules?’ begins with Clarke nicking a ball to the fence. Hayden claims that he’s out, automatic wickey, Symonds looks confused and Hussey agrees with Hayden. Hussey says ‘Rules are rules’ and Symonds retorts, ‘oh yeah, whose rules?’ A staring contest follows before Bill Lawry’s head appears out a window saying ‘Hey boys, I think this means war.’
The second spot, ‘One – Zip’ begins with rain pouring down in the backyard. Hussey insists that it’s fine to play, whereas Clarke doesn’t want to play in the wet and Symonds doesn’t want to play because they ‘keep changing the rules all the time.’ After a second sledge from Hayden about him being a ‘pretty boy’, Clarke gets up and says ‘I’m going to Bill’s’ (Lawry). Symonds gets up and follows as the other boys make ‘oooo’ sounds and Hussey says ‘That’s one zip then.’
If you’ve been watching the cricket then I’m sure you’ve already seen these two advertisements a gazillion times. I think I’m sick of them already. Here they are:
The ads are plugging this fancy website thingamy where you can do lots of fun stuff or something.. check it.. here.
October 26, 2007
Cricket Australia has created a couple of new advertisement promoting the upcoming summer cricket season in Australia. The theme of the ads is ‘Hungry For It’ and they depict the dedication required not only by the players, but the fans as well.
The first advertisement is a re-enactment by current Australian cricketer Michael Clarke of the famous Donald Bradman footage where the Don is hitting a golf ball up against a wall with a cricket stump. He doesn’t do too bad a job at it at all really.. it’s not the easiest practise method.
Michael Clarke recreating the ‘Bradman’ practise method
The advertisement is narrated by a fan on a train..
Us two are pretty similar
You wouldn’t think it to look at us
We’re both dedicated to the game
Just in different ways
Him, he practises methodically, relentlessly
As a fan, I’ll be waiting for that moment
That moment he walks out onto the pitch
The second spot features Australian pace bowler Nathan Bracken practising his thing. It begin with Nathan placing a marker (ten cent coin) on a cricket field that he then proceeds to try and hit with the bounce of his bowling delivery. He misses a few times before finally upsetting the thing, at which point he simply goes back to his box balls and grabs another one.
Nathan Bracken keeps practising as the sun sets
The narration in this one is done by a lady standing inside a cricket stadium (looks like the MCG?). These are her words:
There’s an unspoken law between a player and a fan
He trains until it hurts
And in return, we watch every ball of every game
You see, for him, it doesn’t matter how many wickets he takes
He’ll always want just one more.
The ads were developed by Cricket Australia’s advertising agency, Leo Burnett Melbourne. Talking about the Bradman re-enactment, Leo Burnett GM, Patrick Rowe said: “The whole film crew had a go but no-one could make contact more than three times in a row. Clarkey was the best at it by a mile.”
October 12, 2007
Everybody seems to be doing the eBay thing these days. Once upon a time it was sort of some nerdy way of swapping computer games.. but now it’s totally mainstream. And good on eBay.. they have a nice little monopoly going here on a large and fledgling internet market. When I say monopoly I mean more of a Western monopoly (Taobao has 65% of China market).
Their latest advertisement for Australian audiences focuses on the theme that shopping on eBay is just like a rollercoaster ride – exhilarating, exciting, <insert similar adjective here>.
The 60 second spot begins with a stack of people walking across snow fields, before our focus is diverted to one young lady grabbing a trolley and going for a bit of a ride luge-style.
After whizzing through the course she emerges out the end looking very excited with a coffee maker in hand. The caption follows – ‘Make Shopping Exciting’.
Slow motion is used exhaustively throughout the ad to heighten the excitement and everyone’s favourite Apple iPod superstars Feist provide the backing track with that chart climbing ditty ‘1234’. Personally I would have gone with a little bit more uptempo track or at least something with a little bit more tension in it than the laidback nature of 1234. But it’s still a really good concept.
The advertisement was developed by Tequila Digital with a crew of 60 and a stack of extras on board to climb the mountain and spectate the luge. The ad was shot both on the mountain and inside an ice rink fitted out with a mini luge course (green screened)
There’s some really good behind the scenes movies here that show exactly how the advertisement was put together. Definitely worth a look.
October 8, 2007
Another advertisement that I’m really digging at the moment is the new spot for Foxtel based on the theme ‘see something, feel something’.
The ad begins with a man sitting on a grassy knoll watching as his apple sitting next to him rolls down the hill. This inspires him to do the whole roll-down-the-mountain thing.
But the catch here is that the man doesn’t stop rolling when he reaches the bottom of the hill.. The next shot shows him rolling along a subway wall (yeah.. physically impossible). He is then seen rolling through some old Victorian era sort of scene, which becomes a stage.
The curtains on the stage open as he rolls through them and into an early 20th century alleyway, which then becomes a scene between protesters and riot police. He rolls across a road in front of a car and then up a brick wall, through a fish market, on a beach and finally across a vast desert.
But I guess the main thing about this ad is the cuteness of it all. Instead of regular shooting, the whole thing is down with stop motion. So instead of being quite smooth, there is a constant joltiness about the whole production – totally intended of course. Also the music in this ad, sung by Melanie Horsnell for Nylon Studios, is totally cute; there seems to be a bit of a trend at the moment for songs sung by cute female voices.
October 5, 2007
The third annual Children’s TV Food Advertising Awards were announced yesterday in Melbourne. The awards are voted on by users of a parents’ food and health website called the Parents Jury. There’s not really a lot of awards given out in this ceremony (three) and two thirds of them aren’t really the type of awards that you’d thank your mum for winning.
The three categories and winners are..
Pester Power Award (most manipulative) – McDonalds Spongebob Squarepants Happy Meal ad (for enticing kids with toys)
Smoke and Mirrors Award (most misleading) – Kellogg’s Coco Pops Coco Rocks ad (for diverting parents’ attention from the fact that the cereal is 1/3 sugar by advertising minor benefits)
Parents Choice Award (the good one) – Woolworths Fresh Fruit Kids ad (for showing a kid who likes healthy food)
Now I know that McDonalds has received a bit of a slap on the wrist by this group for manipulative advertising, but let’s be reasonable for a second. So they’re in trouble for giving away toys with their food. Are they the first ever company to give away something free (or just gimmicky) along with their core product. So cereal companies haven’t been giving away toys in boxes for years? Hardly Normal doesn’t give away cash rebates, sweepstakes and 40 months interest free with purchases?
Isn’t this type of thing illegal yet?
How dare you McDonalds for using one of the oldest promotional techniques in the marketing textbook. How could you? You should be ashamed. You are single-handedly bringing down the universe and making our kids fat. Shame on you.
Now, the most misleading advertisement. Oh no, Kellogg’s have highlighted some benefits (which are minor) and haven’t pointed out that the product is loaded with sugar. Does this parent group thing that parents are stupid?? Look at the name of the thing! Coco.. do you think that means healthy food? If you saw a bag of lollies called Heroins would you buy it?
Heroins – Would you buy these for your kids?
Finally the parents choice award goes to Woolworths. Industry suck ups. Yum vegetables for an afternoon snack. I like to make a celery man and then eat him. I don’t know many kids that age who if given a choice would eat vegetables over unhealthy food. I bet Woolworths get Government power credit points for putting out this sort of ad.
What an absolutely ridiculous set of awards. Kids want to eat sugar. It’s simple – not rocket surgery – it tastes good. It is the parents’ responsibility to look at the foods in the supermarket and decide on their kids’ diet and choose foods accordingly. As long as adults can eat as much sugar and fat as they like, you can’t blame a company for advertising the same products to children. It’s hypocrasy to expect them to be ‘ethical’ about it all.
October 3, 2007
Now if you’ll please excuse me, I’d like to do a little bit of gushing. I saw this advertisement for the first time the other day and it really connected with me. I know it’s been around for a while now (since late 2005 I believe), but somehow I’ve remained oblivious to it until the other day.
I’m talking about the Vodafone Mayfly spot – it’s a really great advertisement. I can see that the animation in it is absolutely superb – yes it’s really clever to make a blowfly to those sorts of fancy things. But it’s not really the visual stimuli that makes this thing work – it’s what’s coming in either side of the head.
The narration in this advertisement is really poignant. It has one of those sorts of life messages in it that make you change your outlook a little bit. I know it’s a pretty common theme, the whole live everday like it’s your last, but the way it’s said in this commercial really strikes a chord.
I saw the Aussie version obviously so this is the words as I heard them..
The common mayfly has a life expectancy of just one day.
Does he give a damn? Naah bugger that he says.
He has the time of his life.
Because if anyone knows that time flies, it’s him.
If we made every moment in life count, like the mayfly, what a life that would be.
Vodafone, make the most of now.
But here’s the original (UK) narrative text:
The common mayfly has a life expectancy of just one day.
But is he miserable about it? Not one bit.
He fills his day with the things he loves.
He soars, he sweeps, he savours every moment.
Maybe there’s a lesson in this for us longer living creatures.
Just think, if we embrace life like the mayfly, what a life that would be.
Vodafone, make the most of now.
There are also different narrators for New Zealand, Hungary, Italy, Germany (possibly others).
But it’s not just what’s being said here that makes this ad work so well. Brilliant choice of music (‘The Love Song’ by k-os) really helps set the mood in this piece. The simple major piano chords give off a really ‘everything will be okay’ kind of vibe.
So just to reiterate, I know that this advertisement isn’t new and that I’m probably well behind the 8 ball in seeing this one, but I just had to give my two thumbs up to the creators (Bartle Bogle Hegarty) for this one. Television really is a powerful medium in influencing people and it’s great to see advertisements that aim to change people in a positive way.
September 30, 2007
This is an advertisement spruiking the new verstion of the Holden Ute. This 8th generation model was unveiled in August 2007.
The advertisement shows the evolution of the Holden ute over the decades from the 1950’s to now. Fancy graphics sort of morph the surroundings and the car through time, very similarly to a recent Heineken advertisement.
Aussie rockers Jet provide the backing track with their song ‘Rip It Up’.
Check out the advertisement:
nab (National Australia Bank) has begun this sort of uplifting, motivational campaign which encourages you to ‘climb every mountain’.
The ad begins with a regular Joe who’s lost a sock. He soon finds it under the mattress. As he runs to catch the bus, everyone around him is singing the ‘climb every mountain’ song.
When he gets into the office he sees a photo of a mountain. This is sort of an epiphany for him as he storms out of the office and makes his way to the mountain.
Almost up the mountain he fights of a yeti, who then bursts into song whilst the man makes it to the top of the mountain. The caption follows: ‘a little confidence goes a long way’.
Tada, the commercial:
There’s also a fancy follow-up advertisement that explains how nab has helped a customer climb his mountain. There’s some nice ‘un-building’ of a building in the background here whilst the voiceover prattles on and the ‘climb every mountain’ song plays remixed. The tagline follows ‘You’ve got to plan to become what you plan to become’.
These advertisements were created by Clemenger BBDO.
There’s also a fancy website with doo-dads and things on it. Not bad nab, not bad at all.