LAS VEGAS—Will pint-sized, gender-neutral robots soon become our next pets?
Virgin America's First Class Shoe isn't just some plain old sneaker. Hand crafted in Milan, Italy, this snazzy high-top was assembled to reflect the amenities of Virgin's first-class cabins. White leather. Wifi. Mood lighting. Video display. USB phone charger. Stainless-steel airline-style belt buckle. It's all there! (Too bad the shoes can't buckle themselves.) "We really wanted to give people the chance to experience what it's like to fly Virgin's first class cabin with both feet still on the ground," says Mike McKay, chief creative officer at ad agency Eleven. "We spent almost eight months with Virgin America designing and executing the First Class Shoe. First, we looked at what was currently going on with wearable technology, and there didn't seem to be a shoe that could deliver this level of technology."
People have a hard time sitting through five seconds of pre-roll on YouTube. How will they react to almost six hours of it—much of which is intentionally, preposterously, stultifyingly boring? Virgin America is about to find out.
Next Issue Media, a start-up technology company founded by publishers such as Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith and Time Inc., has hired Eleven to lead its creative efforts.
They say nothing kills a bad product faster than good advertising. And perhaps that's the problem with Samsung's Galaxy Gear. Outside of Oprah Winfrey, Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch isn't getting […]
Specs Who Mike McKay, chief creative officer (l.); Courtney Buechert, chief executive officer What Design, digital and advertising agency Where San Francisco offices
In its migration to the U.S., British headhunter Grace Blue enters a crowded marketplace that includes industry-specific firms and conglomerates with marketing practices like Korn/Ferry.
Now boarding at Gate 11: geeks and nerds! Adland's recent trend of using Silicon Valley stars instead of Hollywood heavyweights and pro athletes—think Best Buy and J. Crew—continues in an interactive push from Virgin America designed to set its in-flight experience apart from the competition. The "Originals" multimedia campaign from ad agency Eleven and production firm Tool includes "frequent fliers" like Pitchfork's Ryan Schreiber, Hairpin's Jane Marie, Pandora's Tim Westergren, BoingBoing's Xeni Jardin, independent artist/Facebook strategist Ji Lee, and Gilt Groupe's Alexis Maybank and Alexandra Wilkis Wilson. Some of those folks designed cabin features for Virgin. Schreiber, for example, curated in-flight music. The techies appear along with other forward-thinking "cultural influencers" (like indie filmmaker Kevin Smith and rock band Shiny Toy Guns) on an elaborate website that serves as the campaign's centerpiece. The site touts airline amenities as users take a fantastical, multi-dimensional trip that includes visits to a baseball game, a performance by the aforementioned Guns and a woodsy Hunger Games-inspired movie shoot. Despite some impressive visuals, I found the tour both overwhelming (a few ideas too many) and vaguely tedious (ultimately, it's an airplane, not a Tardis or holodeck). Lacking film stars, it's telling that Virgin employs Hollywood blockbuster-style overkill to get our attention, essentially reducing its cast of business-world achievers to bit players. It's almost as if the carrier didn't quite trust things to take off with these low-wattage luminaries (in the eyes of the public, anyway) at the controls. See all the ad stars, and a few videos, below.
Branded entertainment often falls at the starting line for lack of a buzz-worthy hook—but Virgin seems to have a winner, in terms of publicity if not actual content, in making the first short film shot at 35,000 feet.