Ad Rants

john stamos

Originally uploaded by souldawg.

New York is the hotbed of the advertising industry. Given that my 9-5 is with an advertising self-regulation company, I’m constantly aware of the different campaigns on display here in NYC. A lot of them are successful, like the design your own Nike ID shoe on the screen in Times Square or the massive billboards for British Airways noting the differences between American and British English.

However many fail as well. For instance, this pic is from the launch of the ABC show Jake in Progress. At every corner in midtown, these poor hapless men were positioned, giving flowers to women passing by encouraging them to watch John Stamos reprise his Full House role minus the baby spittle. Very cute campaign. Very lacking in effectiveness. The media spotlight they hoped to get wasn’t achieved by simply passing out flowers on Midtown street corners.

The latest colossal failure in my books was launched all over the subway, on tops of taxis, everywhere you looked: “The Cows Are Coming. May 12.” What could it be people wondered? Was it another cow parade? Turns out, after some investigative work that it was for the new Coffeemate Dairy Creamer.

The campaign launched at Bryant Park yesterday with people dressed as cows for a simple little event. Turns out the simple little event meant getting your butt to Bryant Park from 10AM-11AM yesterday, having a squeeze cow that said hazelnut or vanilla and a proper entry form. From there you find someone with the opposite kind of cow you had, then be put through your paces in order to have the chance to win $25,000. This devolved from taking a very viral campaign where everyone across the country on blogs like adrants to message boards were discussing what this cow invasion could be to THE most complicated stunt that made a mockery of the potential success they could have had with the campaign. They dropped the ball in my eyes.

I’ll keep my eyes open for new campaigns hitting the streets here in NYC, but let’s pray they learn from the cowslaughter how to do it properly next time.

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