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The Best Video Ever About the Sheeplike Insanity of Real-Time Marketing John St. introduces Reactvertising™

Ever feel like real-time marketing is all about being first, and not about being good?

You're not alone.

John St., the Toronto agency that regularly produces scathing parody videos about the ad business, just released the hilarious video below about the breakneck pace of marketing today—and how every brand feels the need to react to real-time events within minutes.

As it did with Catvertising™, John St. is now pretending to be running a whole new dedicated unit called Reactvertising™, where it goes to absurd lengths to make sure its clients are clued into current events 24/7 and can react within seconds—indeed, knee-jerk-like—to breaking news.

"Does your agency take hours to respond to the latest trending hashtag or celebrity death?" John St. asks. "Is your brand missing out on being part of the conversation because you're reacting too slow?"

Watch below and see how to get quicker, quality be damned.

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October 31, 2014, 1:10 PM EDT

This Outfit Designed to Help Change Clothes in Public Is at 2,000% of Its Kickstarter Goal The Undress brilliantly solves a common problem

With a tagline like "Change clothes in public without ever getting naked," The Undress has a pretty clear sales proposition, and people are lining up in droves to hand the apparel startup their money.

The "mobile changing room" had a Kickstarter goal of $22,000, but when the campaign ends tomorrow, the final tally will be closer to half a million dollars.

The problem The Undress is designed to solve—working out and attempting to change into normal clothes without treating your car or gas station restroom as a fitting room. The solution—a dress that you wear that allows you to change without having to do that weird "how many seconds do I have to put my underwear on before someone walks in on me" dance. You'll have to watch the video for the demonstration, but it's an ingenious idea. 

At first glance, I wonder how big the market is for people who want to change into clothes without showering after a workout, but $468,000 raised probably answers that question for me. 

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October 31, 2014, 12:10 PM EDT

What Makes a Great Creative Director? Here's How 10 of Them Answered That Question Thoughts on leadership and protecting the idea

Ask what makes a great creative creative director, and you'll probably get as many different answers as they're are creative directors.

The 3% Conference recently went around asking a bunch of cds about their role, and compiled answers from 10 of them in the video below. Hopefully it's useful.

The video was produced by the Pitch Agency in Los Angeles, and promote the 3% Conference CD Bootcamp on November 4.

Directed by Rob Schwartz and Pitch CCO Xanthe Wells
Produced by Esther Gonzalez
Editor Nathan Connella
Production company: Bicep

October 31, 2014, 12:08 PM EDT

Santa 'Sleighs' Dracula in Betabrand's Murderous Video Game About Christmas Creep Kringle cannot be stopped

Betabrand satirizes Christmas creep in its first video game, Santa Sleighs Halloween, as you play as Mr. Claus armed with a blunderbuss and a candy cane shiv. Your mission? To make sure no fall holiday is safe from the encroaching consumerism of the season. Clothing retailer Betabrand created the game "to lampoon the early onset of holiday sales—a retail trend that will surely morph Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas into a three-headed shopping Cerberus."

Which it is indeed. All my local stores started putting out their Christmas crud weeks ago. It does seem that no matter how many times consumers complain about holiday creep, stores just can't help themselves.

At least Betabrand knows what's up. They hired digital agency Bradley and Montgomery to create the game, in which Kris Kringle kills mummies, werewolves, witches, zombies, vampires and Frankenstein in an unholy quest to become the one true holiday.

And it's more than just a game. When you play, you can unlock deal codes and humorous specials. So, if you want some sweet swag from Betabrand, be prepared to plunge your candy cane stake right into Dracula's heart.

October 31, 2014, 11:33 AM EDT

Hootsuite's Great Halloween Ads Try to Calm Your Fears About Social Media Fun horror-movie parodies

It's that time of year again, when we can escape our average selves, don clever costumes and get all hopped up on Fireball shots—I mean, gummy worms. And it's always pretty fun to see what brands do to celebrate, because when they're good, they can be really good.

Social media aggregation site Hootsuite has done itself proud with a great series of horror-movie parody posters, produced in-house. Take a look below and see what happens when scary movies are monster-mashed with social-media themes. (And keep a sharp eye, because two of these are actually sneaky GIFs.)

Via Ads of the World.

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October 31, 2014, 10:26 AM EDT

1960s Adman Makes a Hilarious and Obscene Visit to a Modern Agency (NSFW) This guy makes Don Draper look classy

We've already seen how Joan Harris (aka, Christina Hendricks) might adjust to life at a modern ad agency. Well, this guy is way more of a train wreck.

Canadian ad agency Zulu Alpha Kilo put together this crazy video for Wednesday's Agency of the Year event in Toronto. It's hilarious, if you don't mind a little nudity, profanity and off-color humor.

It took some balls to make this. Well, one nasty, hairy, protruding ball.

Credits below.

Video is NSFW for various reasons, but watch it anyway.

UPDATE: Also, it seems Dick collected Zulu Alpha Kilo's silver hardware for Digital Agency of the Year on stage at last night's event:

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October 31, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

Real Beauty? Nah, Victoria's Secret Would Rather Celebrate the 'Perfect Body' Brand's play on words comes off tone-deaf

Victoria's Secret is under fire for its newest bra campaign featuring the tagline "The Perfect 'Body'," suggesting on first glance that these women have it, and you probably don't.

More than 10,000 people have signed a U.K. petition calling for Victoria's Secret to  "apologise for and amend the irresponsible marketing of your new bra range 'Body'."

"Victoria’s Secret’s new advertisements play on women's insecurities and send out a damaging message by positioning the words 'The Perfect Body' across models who have exactly the same, very slim body type," the petition notes. "This marketing campaign is harmful. It fails to celebrate the amazing diversity of women’s bodies by choosing to call only one body type 'perfect'."

Of course, the brand isn't literally saying its models have the perfect body. It's a play on words with the popular "Body" line of bras, and the ad copy clarifies: "Perfect fit. Perfect comfort. Perfectly soft."

But at a time when unrealistic body images are such a controversial topic, this tagline has understandably sparked some fires in social media:

This year we've seen quite a few female-focused brands toss aside the whole idea of perfection. Aerie refused to Photoshop models, ModCloth pledged to be transparent about retouching, Dear Kate focused its underwear campaigns on "real women"), so one has to wonder if Victoria's Secret just made a tone-deaf misstep or actively decided to troll the competition.

October 30, 2014, 5:50 PM EDT

Netflix's Fun Outdoor Ads Use 100 Awesome GIFs From Shows and Movies And some of them are even responsive

GIFs have left the nest!

The digital video files first made a jump to TV a while back, thanks to Fiat. And now they've ventured all the way outside in a fascinating Netflix campaign from Ogilvy Paris.

For the streaming service's launch in France, the agency created 100 different GIFs, some of which "reacted" to current events and even things like the weather (for example, a rainy scene from a film when it's actually raining at a bus stop).

People who hate GIFs will surely be appalled at this. And yes, it's a little jarring to see the hypnotic-looping videos running on large formats outside. But they're undeniably eye-catching in ways that other digital video just isn't.

Check out the case study below.

October 30, 2014, 3:29 PM EDT

And Here Is Nike's Grand, Gritty Salute to LeBron James and His Return to Cleveland

LeBron James can go home again. And again. And again.

The NBA star's return to Cleveland from Miami was always going to be fodder for numerous ad campaigns. And indeed, we've already seen spots from Beats by Dre and Sprite this week. Now it's Nike's turn to get epic—timed to Thursday night's Cavaliers home-opener against the New York Knicks.

It's suitably goosebump inducing, as LeBron leads not just his teammates but all of Cleveland in a massive pre-game huddle—the ultimate come-to-Jesus moment for the city's once-and-again favorite son.

Nike Basketball partnered with Wieden + Kennedy for the spot, which was directed by the Malloy Brothers. LeBron's mom, Gloria Marie James, makes a cameo, as do Coach Dru Joyce and teammates Kyrie Irving, Dion Waters, Anderson Varejao, Shawn Marion, Tristan Thompson, Matthew Dellavedova and Joe Harris.

Nike is also introducing the LeBron 12 Hrt of a Lion shoe today, and is currently working on the nine-hour process of unveiling a 10-story, 25,000-square-foot banner on Ontario Street welcoming James back to Cleveland.

October 30, 2014, 2:07 PM EDT

20 Years Before It Was Cool to Cast Gay Couples, Ikea Made This Pioneering Ad Patrick O'Neill looks back at his 1994 spot

The mini-wave of brands casting gay couples in TV ads this year continues to rise, with the likes of Honey Maid, Cheerios and DirecTV all diving in. More power to them. But Ikea was the first marketer to feature a gay couple in a mainstream commercial. Twenty years ago.

The 1994 spot below, from Deutsch, ran after 10 p.m. in three markets where Ikea then had a significant presence: New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. The late-night airing ensured that the ad wouldn't be seen during "family hour" programming. That concession, however, did little to quell the objections of the American Family Association and its leader, the Rev. Donald Wildmon.

Wildmon called for boycotts of Ikea stores, one of which, on Long Island, N.Y., was the target of a bomb threat, which turned out to be unfounded. The retailer, however, continued to air the ad, which was part of a lifestyle campaign featuring different types of consumers (a divorced mom, adopting parents, empty nesters, etc.) that began in 1993.

The creative team behind "Dining Room," including creative director Greg DiNoto, associate cd Kathy Delaney, copywriter Dallas Itzen and art director Patrick O'Neill, are no longer at Deutsch. But O'Neill, who later worked at TBWA\Chiat\Day and now is chief creative officer at blood testing company Theranos, shared his memories of helping to create something that didn't win awards but was truly groundbreaking.

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October 30, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT


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AdFreak is your daily blog of the best and worst of creativity in advertising, media, marketing and design. Follow us as we celebrate (and skewer) the latest, greatest, quirkiest and freakiest commercials, promos, trailers, posters, billboards, logos and package designs around. Edited by Adweek's Tim Nudd and David Griner.

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