There's a new fitness center opening up in St. Louis off Watson Rd.  I'm thinking about swinging by to check out the facility.  The place is called All N 1 Fitness and it offers state of the art equipment, group exercise classes, racquetball courts, a steam room, boxing ring, and MMA cage.  I don't see myself ever being a cage fighter, but I'll tell you what, I wouldn't mind working out at a place that had one.  I've posted a link to their facility walkthrough.  It's a pretty rad looking place.  Tell me what you think in the comments.  

All N 1 Fitness 9744 Watson Rd. St. Louis, MO 63126
http://alln1fitness.net/see-the-new-all-n-1-fitness/
 
 
I love viral videos.  What exactly are they?  They're videos created by marketers to create word-of-mouth buzz through social networks.  I'm no expert on the matter, but I'm learning more and more everyday.  Case in point.  Rawlings.  Rawlings is a leading producer of sports equipment, most noticeably in baseball.  Gloves, bats, helmets, shoes.  You name it - they make it. 
 
The most recent addition to the Rawlings lineup is the Power Fusion Bat.  It's a $300 bat with one heck of a sweet spot and its target demographic is 12-21 year olds.  While the upper half of that section will be impressed with the bat's specs, something drastic needed to take place that would motivate the younger generation to want the bat.  Instead of advertising the bat directly to the kids, they decided to let the kids find the bat.

Adamson Advertising out of St. Louis, MO was given the task to create a buzz for the brand.  What did they do?  They went viral. They started by putting flyers on cars at baseball games advertising a fake windshield repair service that had been getting a lot of recent work due to the Power Fusion Bat.  How genius is that?  It got people talking, it got the word out, and it was a flyer - one of the cheapest forms of advertising out there. 
What put the product in the spotlight though?  It's a viral video that got over one million views on Youtube and became the talk of the town in baseball forums everywhere.  Below I've linked to the clip.  An apparently homemade video of a boy struggling to break a pinata.  As the struggle continues, he's given a different bat, the power fusion bat, and the rest is history.  The message clearly  delivers itself.

Check out the video below, and feel free to leave your insights on what you think of Adamson's viral campaign for Rawlings. 
 
 
I just came across this new ad for Fruit by the Foot.  I can't believe it still exists.  It's basically like chewing on rubber for 2 hours and it takes about four brushes and 2 cartons of floss to get it out of your teeth.  I liked it as a kid though, not going to lie.  Anyway, here's their new ad which features two weird kids battling it out with fruit by the foot.  My personal favorite, replacing his fingers with fruit by the foot.  But I gotta say, the whole DNA thing, very smart my friend, very smart.
 
 
 Evian water has launched a viral campaign featuring a bunch of babies skating around dancing.  Not sure how effective its going to be, but I'm short on time for a blog and wanted to share it with you guys.  What do you think of the ad?
I can almost guarantee the next phase of this campaign.   An "add your own photo" website where you can see your face on one of the skating babies.  Call me a sucker, but I'm in.  Will I buy the water?  Probably not.  Will I have fun seeing my face on a baby's body?  Without a doubt.  
 
 
Picture

HBO's True Blood is one of the best television shows to come out within last 5 years.  Hands down.  Is it for everyone?  Probably not, but ratings are pretty much golden as season 2 reaches it midpoint.  

It's pretty obvious that were living in the time of the vampire.  Twilight is the biggest movie of the year, the trailer for New Moon is getting millions of hits each day, and one of the best shows on television is about vampires and humans coexisting.  Need more details?

True Blood, at its core, is a story about humans and vampires coexisting.  Synthetic blood, called True Blood, makes it possible for vampires to exist without feeding on humans.  Does this stop all of them?  No, but it does stop some, leading to  a great story full of love, action, hate, and hostility.  

In order to reach a larger audience, HBO decided to hire a creative agency out of L.A. called Digital Kitchen to really bring the marketing up a notch.  What was the objective?  Create buzz.  What did the company do?  Partnered with some very large corporations in creating mock ads for vampires.  Monster, Harley Davidson, and Gillette all got in on the action, and it paved the way for some truly entertaining and attention-grabbing advertisements.  

In addition to creating these mock ads for vampires, Digital Kitchen went one step further down the viral direction.  They created viral videos that outline a crazy event caught on camera, mainly focusing on the idea of the "shapeshifter," a character within the series that has the ability to change from a human to an animal at any point in time (ending up naked at the transformation).  What did these videos do?  Create buzz, attention, and get people thinking WTF.  That's what viral videos do, they get people talking, and from what I've seen, I'll be talking, and I think my friends will too.  

Enjoy some of the ads and viral videos below or feel free to check them out at Digital Kitchen's website:  http://www.d-kitchen.com/projects/True-Blood-Season-2-Campaign

Picture
Picture
 
 

Tappening is a company whose goal is to stop the mass consumption of bottled water.  Their site offers statistics, editorials, and opinions on the negative aspects the bottled water industry.  Their source of revenue?  Eco-friendly water bottles that contain slogans like "Good people drink local" or Think global go local."  The bottles are actually pretty cool, but it's the message delivered in their new advertising campaign that really caught my eye.

People choose bottled water based on a ton of different reasons.  I myself like the Aquafina bottle the best.  My friends used to get Nestle because it was the cheapest.  But the one thing all these waters share in common is the crazy way in which they try to differentiate their product with words such as "reverse osmosis,"  "crystal lake reduction," or Caribbean Waterfall production."  I mean even if these waters are getting processed through a Caribbean waterfall, does that really make a difference in the taste or eco-friendliness of the water?  That is exactly the question that Tappening hits on in their brilliant new ad campaign.

In a recent interview Tappening partner Eric Yaverbaum stated, "We want people to know we're blatantly lying in our new campaign, and, most importantly, that everyone should pay close attention to what's factual in marketing and what's -- not so much."  It all started with the tagline 98% Melted Ice Caps...2% Polar Bear Tears, which, I don't know about you but I find hilarious.  It really reminds me of all those Chuck Norris quotes you read about - 12 % unicorn 88% muscle or whatever- I completely made that one up, but you should know what I'm talking about.

I think ads using the "fake ingredient" slogans would have worked just fine, but Tappening went a different way and used other taglines that claimed lies about bottled water in general.  Funny slogans such as "Bottled water is the number one cause of restless leg syndrom,"  or "bottled water makes acid rain fall on playgrounds."  Pair this with a funny image and you've got yourself a hilarious campaign.  

The last peice of the puzzle involves some interactive social media.  The website startalie.com was created, and allows users to start their own lie about bottled water.  How does this benefit the company?  Each person that creates a lie then shares it on twitter, facebook, and all forms of social media.  The word gets out, people are directed to the site, the company gets global.  Simple concept- huge potential for results.  I recommend you check the site out, there's some pretty funny fake facts about bottled water.  My personal favorite, "Bottled water shot a man in Reno...just to watch him die."  Random I know.  Hilarious nonetheless.

Scope out the company at tappening.com
Check out the ads at startalie.com

Picture
Picture
 
 

  
I promised you guys a big idea and here's what I got.  I want a new job.  Easy enough right?  Wrong!  The economy is in a slump, companies are low on funds, and only the best and the brightest are getting hired.  Am i the best?  More than likely.  Am I the brightest?  Without a doubt.  But despite those facts, getting noticed in a crowded marketplace can be a bit of a challenge.   What's the big idea you ask?  To get noticed.  How's it going to be executed?  Thats the part I'm still hashing out.  Below I've got three big ideas, all equally rough, but creative nonetheless.  Here it goes:


1.  Create an interactive box and send it to companies. Whether it be a picture of me that pops up, a voice box that greets them with a message, heck I've even heard of someone sending a box filled with tabasco sauce and a card saying, "Hire me if you want to spice things up."  Very basic concepts that, if done correctly, may put me in the right direction or get my foot in the door.


2.  Market myself as a product or a service.  Create an advertising plan or creative brief based on myself and my qualifications.  Attach all of this in a document and send it with a press release announcing my induction back into the hiring pool.  Send it to each company I am interested in.  Simple, but different.  I could even do market research as to what kind of person I am, what I'm good at, and what sets me apart from competitors.  The list goes on and on.


3.  Create an awesome invitation in photoshop to an online event which will occur on this website at a certain time on a certain date.  The event isn't planned yet, but I'm thinking it will be a video debut.  It will be a extremely well shot, cut, and edited video outlining me as the next big player in advertising.  Say I send the invite to 20 companies, 10 throw the invitation away, 8 don't log on to watch it, but 2 do - I'm thinking those two would be impressed with the production.  I would also include my creative process behind the whole thing along with the invitation to draw more interest from companies.


I'm not going to lie.  THis is a BIG idea.  Not only am I unsure if I could even pull any of them off, but I'm unsure how agencies would even react. Would they laugh, understand, or scoff at my so called "self-marketing."  I'm not sure, but it's only big idea #1, so I won't worry too much just yet. 


Feel free to weigh in with you own ideas and opinions in my comments section.


- Buff

 
 

I'll be finishing up my big idea blog tonight.  Hoping for a midnight release.  Keep checking back for insights, opinions, and ideas!  Be sure to leave comments so I know you're stopping by!

 
 

The Essential Guide to Men's Grooming  (Pt.1)

Picture
Guys, I'm putting this one first for a reason.  Listerine Cool Mint destroys bad breath the second it hits your mouth.  It's like throwing an Alaskan Ice Fish into the back of your throat and letting him swim around for 60 seconds.  Doesn't sound pleasing?  Well sometimes, it doesn't feel too pleasant either.  Think about the science behind it though.  While you sleep, your mouth is dry and more susceptible to plaque and bacteria.  Swish this once before you brush in the morning and once before you brush at night.  You're girlfriend and your tongue will thank me.

Picture
No one knows about the brand or this company but I'm here to start the hype.  GoSmile toothpaste tastes 10x better than regular mint toothpastes.  The drawback? It costs about 10x the price.  Rounding in at $12 a tube, I could see where your skeptical, but the taste and the results make it worth the extra dough.  Give it a brush with GoSmile AM/PM and you'll see a slight whitening result in about a week.  Throw in a extra $90 and you can get the entire whitening set.  My advice to you - give it a try.  My advice to GoSmile - refigure your marketing. 

 
 

Alright, so anyone reading this is probably thinking, "Buff lost it."  "He's gone crazy!"  "He's got too much time on his hands."  Truth be told, it's pretty much the opposite.  I'm slaving 50+ hours a week at a job that doesn't really make me happy.  That's why I'm here.  I'm planning some big things in the future, and I'm organizing my life around them.  I'm planning on posting my first "BIG IDEA" blog tonight at around Midnight and I'm hoping you guys will come back and weigh in with your thoughts in the comments section.  For now, I'll tide you over with a little blog about...you guessed it...my favorite Men's Grooming Products.