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Reebok Offers 1-Year Fitness Package to Whoever Gets the Biggest Reebok Tattoo 1-day contest in Sweden has $5,800 prize

Reebok is offering fitness junkies a chance to earn a yearlong sponsorship deal worth about $5,800, with a major catch: the prize will only go to the fanatic who gets the largest tattoo of the brand's logo in a one-day pop-up studio.

With an assist from Stockholm-based tattoo parlor Salong Betong, the brand will set up shop at Sweden's Tough Viking obstacle race event on Aug. 30. Whoever ends up volunteering for the biggest tattoo of the Reebok logo will walk away with a package worth 40,0000 Swedish krona (almost $6,000) that can be redeemed at an online or brick-and-mortar Reebok store. 

Runners-up—defined in this case as anyone bold enough to get a logo etched onto his or her body—will get a consolation prize of a Reebok fitness kit worth 5,000 Swedish krona, or about $725.

It's not the global sportswear company's first time building a live event activation around giving consumers free ink. At South by Southwest in 2013, Reebok footed the bill for 45 people to get tattoos of their choosing, if they would agree to appear in the brand's marketing. And while Reebok is definitely more stable than, say, an Internet startup or a local realtor, it's also safe to say that sometimes branded tattoos don't really work out that well.

In fairness to Reebok, the new campaign, created with The Viral Company, is aimed in part at hardcore fitness practitioners, which the brand has put at the center of its marketing strategy in recent years. The campaign serves as the springboard for the new logo it launched this past spring, symbolic of its shift from focusing on pro athletes to intense amateurs.

The tagline sums up the philosophy pretty well: "Pain is temporary. Reebok is forever." Maybe so. Then again, looking in the mirror 30 years down the line and seeing a giant logo—or paying an arm and a leg to get it removed—might sting a bit.

August 14, 2014, 9:33 AM EDT

This Cockamamie Chinese Credit Card Ad With a Gifted Goose Might Be the Most Absurd Thing You Watch Today And you'll still have no idea what it's selling

I've watched this ad seven times, and I'm still at a loss for words. Clocking in at 1:53, it runs a bit long by most standards, but I could watch it over and over. 

This spot, from Chinese credit card company QQ Caibei and Shangai agency Leagas Delaney, is a delightfully weird day in the life of a man and his pet goose, Ah Fa. Why have a pet goose? The ad makes a pretty compelling case.

This bird can really do anything. It's a beer opener, remote-control airplane, alarm clock, boat motor, car jack, table tennis whiz and much more. He's probably the best pet anyone could ever ask for. 

So, how does this all tie in to a credit card? Well, this ad is promoting QQ Caibei's point system, which, once accumulated, affords the owner limitless possibilties. "When one can do many things, it makes life easier," says the headline of the ad. 

Just take a look below and see for yourself. 

Via Ads of the World.

August 13, 2014, 6:30 PM EDT

'How You Webinar' Puts a Beat Behind the Business World's Worst Jargon On24 and Portal A rap about lead generation

This new video for webinar platform On24 is more proof that white-guy rapvertising is never going out of style.

It comes on the heels of last week’s cringey Toyota Swagger Wagon sequel, but instead of hiring some generic actors to rap along with Busta Rhymes, Portal A picked YouTube star DJ Dave, whom you might remember from the time he got REAL in the Whole Foods parking lot.

Why does that make it different? Because DJ Dave actually has some talent. He is rapping out the most awkward business buzzwords in double time and making them sound normal, while also playing the office-golfing exec worthy of such a douchey vocabulary. Waymond Lee from Comedy Central’s Workaholics also makes an in-character appearance in the video.

This is Portal A’s third trip to the viral well of white-guy rapping following 2008’s "Bankers v. Consultants" and the "2 Legit 2 Quit” local campaign for Mayor Ed Lee's reelection. Clearly the genre is still going strong despite its long history and numerous suggestions that it jumped the shark years ago.

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August 13, 2014, 12:15 PM EDT

Now Your Whole House Can Be a Shrine to Fenway's Green Monster, Thanks to Benjamin Moore Red Sox fans, rejoice

For many Red Sox fans, the only thing more iconic about Fenway Park than chanting "Yankees suck" is the Green Monster, and now you can bring a taste of that towering wall home with you.

Benjamin Moore's Fenway Collection lets baseball fans buy the exact shades of paint used in the ballpark, and of course the most iconic color being promoted is Green Monster.

Other shades in the collection are Boston Red, Boston Blue, Baseline White, and Foul Pole Yellow, just so we're all caught up.

The Martin Agency's video spots for the collection, set to the Standells' "Dirty Water," are full of civic pride and Tom Sawyer-worthy fence painting, including an unlikely shot of someone climbing up a ladder with paint bucket in hand as if to touch up the Green Monster manually. He's like the John Henry of stadium painting.

More seriously, Benjamin Moore has pledged to renovate youth league ballparks around Boston with some of the sales of its Fenway Collection and has already repainted a field in West Roxbury.

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August 13, 2014, 9:11 AM EDT

Sweet, Goofy Toyota Spot Transforms Prague Streets Into a Choose-Your-Own Musical Adventure Lots of enthusiastic, off-key singing

In today's episode of “Fun Public Marketing Stunts That Aren't Firmly Connected to the Actual Product,” Saatchi & Saatchi Europe turned Prague into a giant karaoke machine on behalf of the Toyota Yaris Hybrid.

The playlist, which is an almost-impressive living monument to awful pop songs, was made by changing the street names in Prague's town center to song titles, and then connecting the Yaris' stereo to a GPS system that triggered a new song every time the driver turned onto a different street. That's an awful lot of work just to hear a complete stranger's off-key rendition of “Uptown Girl.” 

It's not that the idea itself is bad—plenty of people sing in their cars, myself included. Some of the performances, supposedly culled from the best of live auditions, could even seem endearing. But the payoff doesn't fit the scale of execution at all, and the whole thing looks a little silly as a result. On the other hand, maybe that's the point. 

Seriously, though, Hall & Oates? Do they not know who Queen is? 

August 12, 2014, 1:26 PM EDT

Dancing Cats Get Turned Up in This Explosive Meow Mix Promo Surreal jingle remix ushers in contest for charity

If you're just a regular, mellow cat, this electronic cat dance video might weird you out. But if you're a super hip cat that likes to indulge in a little 'nip now and then, this high-octane gem could be just your speed. 

Imagine you're at the club and everything is going just perfect—amazing vibe, great tunes, awesome beat. And you're all crunk on catnip and Half & Half.

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August 12, 2014, 12:15 PM EDT

Swedish Lifestyle Is Back to Taunt America in New Wasa Crispbread Ad Yogi fathers and their spry offspring flaunt generous family leave

Sweden is getting its high cheekbones all up in America's grill once again, asserting its Scandinavian superiority with this online spot for Wasa Crispbread.

An American woman in Sweden takes a yoga class and happily discovers that it's filled with hunky, English-speaking dads and their adorably flexible babies. Because in everyone's favorite progressive paradise, family leave for fathers can last a long time … and, apparently, babies are frighteningly good at yoga.

"I wrote the 'Yoga Baby' script after a visit to Sweden when a friend noted that the Swedes seemed to have more male nannies than anywhere else," says Scott Goodson, CEO at StrawberryFrog, which created the campaign. "But they weren't nannies, they were daddies who get six months parental leave for each newborn. That deserved a film!"

Sweden has been flexing its blond muscles in ads lately, with this Wasa campaign following the popular "Like a Swede" initiative from trade-union group TCO earlier this year.

"The naturalness of Swedish life, the fit lifestyle and the Nordic mind-set is very different and fun and in many cases inspiring for American men and women," according to Goodson.

Well, America's pretty cool too. We've got … um … Tim Howard … when he's not playing in the U.K., that is. And we've got other great stuff. Like GM cars and grade-A produce. U-S-A! 

Patriotism notwithstanding, this particular yoga class feels like an exercise in strangeness for its own sake. I guess I shouldn't get all twisted up about it, though.

August 12, 2014, 10:54 AM EDT

Apple's Powerful 'Your Verse' Campaign Rolls On, From Beijing and Through Detroit iPad goes on tour with a Chinese band, and facilitates a Motor City bicycle rally

Apple is sticking with a good thing, continuing the rollout of its "Your Verse" campaign with two new stories about how people around the world are using iPads as tools to support their passions.

In one, Yaoband, a Beijing-based electro-pop group, use their gadgets to sample sounds, communicate with fans, and perform live while they tour China. In the second, Jason Hall, a Detroit resident, uses his tablet to help organize Slow Roll, a weekly group bike ride through the city that draws thousands of cyclists, in an effort to help revitalize the city's sense of community.

The 60-second TV ads for each, below, do get the ideas across, but they're really just teasers—the deep dives over at Apple's website make for less impressionistic and more powerful experiences.

Even those are fairly ambitious, and rely on a premise that may not be obvious to anyone who hasn't been closely following the brand's advertising of late. The "Your Verse" tagline launched early this year by paying homage to Walt Whitman as brilliantly recited by Robin Williams, may he rest in peace, in the 1989 movie Dead Poets Society. It has since been the foundation for some of the brand's most persuasive ads in recent memory. But even to newcomers to the campaign, the takeaway should be clear enough, and feel consistent with expectations for good tech advertising: These are vignettes that illustrate how engineering can help enrich lives.

Plus, it's nice to see Apple's marketing keep reaching high while also staying grounded. Especially when that's what people expect—or at least hope—to get from the brand. 

August 12, 2014, 9:42 AM EDT

Canadian Cancer Society Invites You to Fight Your Fears and Help Save Lives at the Same Time Raise cash by facing your phobia

Are you afraid of heights? Swimming with sharks? If you have a phobia you've been meaning to overcome, now is a particularly good time, thanks to a new campaign from the Canadian Cancer Society that lets you simultaneously raise money for the fight against cancer.

The idea behind the cash-and-awareness push, called the Fearless Challenge and created by Lowe Roche, is basically Kickstarter meets Fear Factor for a good cause. Make a video of yourself describing your fear, set a target for how much cash it will take to get you face that fear, and when you've reached your fundraising goal, make another a video proving that you didn't chicken out.

It launches with endorsements and pledges from celebrities, many of them actors. Kevin Zegers (of Air Bud and Gossip Girl), for example, will face his fear of embarrassment and confrontation by fighting a professional sumo wrestler for $10,000. Jonathan Keltz (of The CW's Reign and HBO's Entourage), who is terrified of spiders, will allow himself to be covered in tarantulas for $5,000. Self-described control freak Italia Ricci (of ABC's Chasing Life) will submit to a stunt drive with boyfriend Robbie Amell (of The CW's The Flash) for $2,000.

The strategy is, overall, a clever one. It offers a relatively lighthearted way to approach an issue that's deeply scary, while also seeking to address the problem substantively. Proceeds from the campaign will go toward cancer research and support services for cancer patients and their families. And one of the campaign's key premises, that "no fear is too big or small," is a great one, sure to help keep the scope broad. Case in point: One of the challenges features a shy guy pledging to high-five strangers for $100.

The woman who is promising on her pledge page to hug a circus clown for $100, though, really might want to reconsider. It's perfectly rational to avoid that. 

Check out more videos and campaign materials after the jump.

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August 11, 2014, 2:15 PM EDT

DirecTV Strikes Gold Again With Manning Brothers Rap Sequel It's a 'Fantasy Football Fantasy'

Eli and Peyton Manning are back to rapping for DirecTV, and it's still pretty glorious.

Last summer, the pro footballers and the satellite provider graced us with "Football on Your Phone." Now they're using song to hawk DirecTV's dedicated fantasy football channel as a dream come true in its own right.

Like the first spot, "Fantasy Football Fantasy" leans hard into its own stupidity, delivering a 3-minute blitz that builds from a football filled with nachos to an auto-tuned Eli Manning floating in space, and includes cameos from Chris Johnson and Joe Namath. 

It's not dissimilar in spirit from Toyota's Swagger Wagon joke-rap work, which also made a recent comeback after a much longer hiatus. But the new DirecTV ad manages to be less cringeworthy, probably by being more insane.

So, extra points to the broadcast brand's agency, Grey in New York, for not dropping the ball on the sequel.

Full credits after the jump.


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August 11, 2014, 12:30 PM EDT


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