Christmas at home - via Edinburgh

So it seems a foot of snow in Edinburgh is fine, but a sprinkle down south and it takes twice as long to do anything.

Granted, a train between Glasgow and Edinburgh didn't quite happen and apparently nobody in the creative department managed to get into work, but that didn't stop me getting the train to London. (Phew)

Now for once I have to prize the East Coast line, free internet, table seat, cheap ticket, space for my suitcase. This verses me flying from Edinburgh to Gatwick using either BA, which wouldn't of happened or Easyjet, who wouldn't have been qualified to fly in the snow. So I'm pretty glad I travelled via the train.

It gave me time to think on a great year and possibly think about highlighting a few things. The fact that this time last year we didn't have a job, it was the height of the recession and everybody who was anybody was going for every single placement that was possibly available.

First major thing was the move. Edinburgh, why? "Cos we wanna work" seemed to be the obvious answer. If our book is good enough to get placements in London, why couldn't it in Scotland? What have we got to lose?

At that time? Not much. Up rooting, leaving everyone, this felt 'a bigger than uni' step. This was a career move. And so far it's paid off, minus the losing the girlfriend due to the distance, but not everything in life is perfect.

The next has got to be making our first TV advert while at Union. A great day, even if it peed it down all day.

Quickly followed by lots for work for STV Jobs including a couple of little ads.


We had a great 6 months at Union then moved to Leith in September. We're here until at least mid February.

Advertising Agency recruiting - via Facebook

Isobel Advertising is using Facebook for it's recruitment drive.

I'd never heard of them before, so the inquisitive me decided I would do as the ad told me to and clicked on it.

It took me to the contact page, which was a bit of a shame as a recruitment page would have helped seen as there was actually no mention of any jobs going on the site. But hey, you can't please everyone.
This is them...
Facebook seems the way forward with selling yourself.

This is constantly up on my profile.
Diana Caplinska wants a job too.
If either can be helped, please do. This is my christmas appeal, and a poor one at that.

Poke Hack Day - including hacking my blog

First things first, Nik Roope CD at Poke London steals the limelight of the blog with his twitter picture...

Now onto the good stuff, so i've stolen half of this from here but it deserves a lot more credit and publicity, and one more mention wouldn't hurt its cause.

The plan, everybody at Poke London gets the day off to do something creative in separate. You have 24 hours to think, make and present your idea a panel of judges. The best team wins a nice prize teams.

"Here’s a round up of the creations:
The Holy Sandwich A never-ending stack of user-generated sandwiches.
Egg Watchers : An egg timer that sources decent YouTube videos of exactly the right length you need to cook your egg. (Notice, reader, how we steered away from the “eggactly” pun. It wasn’t easy.)
That’s a Cappuccino Campaigning to make Britain’s coffee better with a nice, simple thumbs up or down.
Tracka2 A high-fibre cereal bar with a GPS tracking device buried in it, so you can track your “load”. Delightful.
Al Pieda A Saw-style ‘death mask’ that releases a custard pie on the face of the wearer on the receipt of one million clicks on the Al Pieda website.
TasteBuddi Randomly generated sweet and savoury food combinations for the more adventurous palate.
The Holy Sandwich took the judges prize, winning a five-course meal at the Chef’s table at Corrigan’s. The second prize winners, with the largest volume of traffic, will be announced in March." - Poke blog
Now I know it's a personal thing, but Tracka2 if f**king hilarious. If you watch their promo video, it's brilliant. The Facebook interaction really had me in fits of laughter. Apparently they are actually trying to make the product too, hence the tweet from Nik. I liked what TasteBuddi, clean simple and interesting if you're wanting random sandwiches, a lot like Holy Sandwich.
That's a Cappuccino is a nice thing for discovering where to go and not to go for the 1 shot of everything in a mug. Egg watchers is funny, I've seen a viral for a fake microwave that does exactly the same thing. If that webpage was available by .mobi then it would have had the market all to itself, I just unfortunately have my Mac in the kitchen.
And unfortunately Al Pieda is just a bit too random. Sorry guys.
I'd love to do something like this. I guess it helps when the agency is a wizz with technology and has the skills to implement these things so quickly. Many places don't have those capabilities or the guts to put the agency's creativity over clients. Good on Poke. Hopefully there will be one next year.

UK Snow for Twitter

Saw uksnow float around twitter today, it's a great little device to track the weather via human interaction. None of this it'll snow rubbish off the tv to then be disappointed. All you have to do is hashtag #uksnow then your first 3 digits of your current postcode eg. EH6, SE1 etc then rank it on a scale from 0-10.

0/10 = no snow
1/10 = a few flakes
3/10 = light snow
5/10 = steady snow
7/10 or more = blizzard

eg. #uksnow EH6 0/10

Enjoy the human weather forecast
Track it here

Publicis - I've Got A Feeling lip sync

I really like Publicis, don't get me wrong, but this is a bit cringeworthy. It's too jumpy to lip sync properly. I like the ones that follow people around the office and I know for a fact they have a great London office that they could do this with... It also seems odd that I haven't seen an xmas idea from them and this pops up this week. Could anyone point me in the right direction to any real xmas card from them?

Sir John Hegarty Talk

Friday night saw the third STV masterclass talk, I've been to see Trevor Beattie, I missed the Mark Waites one, both from what I've seen and heard were very useful.

The advertising guru this time was none other than John Hegarty and his talk was on:

10 Reasons Why This Is The Best Time To Be In Advertising.

1. Technology is the liberation of creativity

With the ability like never before to do something and then put it out to the masses via any media channel for pennies means ideas can go viral without asking it too.

They leaked four of their new tracks for buskers to play, uploaded content to youtube, let everyone know where they were playing next and all Oasis fans went nuts. They even managed to break the US billboard chart for the first time.

2. Agencies create media opportunities

Audi wanted to have a constant foothold in the car market. So BBH created Audi TV, the first branded content channel that makes all sorts of programmes that just include Audis. Check out Audi Tv for more.

3. Agencies can create programming

BBH created Lynx (Axe) Gamekillers for MTV. This video will tell you more.

4. Agencies creativity can be the media

Okay, this is a BBH budget, but they decided with the whole marketing spend of $400k to blow it all on production then put it on youtube. This meant the idea had to be viral. The product was Smirnoff Tea, and this is the outcome

5. Agencies can persuade clients to be brave

BBH was trying to sell the xbox. It instead of making one TV ad, negotiated and managed to get three. These three went on youtube and whichever gets the most hits, gets aired on TV. This is the one that won. Can you see why?

6. Agencies can tackle growing social issues

Banardos Break the cycle started life as a web banner in which you click to stop the video replaying. Simple, and it went on to win Simon Veksner and NIck Allsop a few awards.

7. Technology has always been a spur to creativity, now more than ever.

Dean Woodhouse and Hugo Bierschenk created Mentos Kiss, a webcam interactive kissathon with a rather good looking male or female. Won a bucketful of awards too.

8. Agencies can expand their influence with clients. Integration is now vital

360 for the Audi R8 looked like this:
Internal comms
Product placement
Factory TV
Interactive TV
Web banners
Magazine PR

It was a lovely spider diagram.

9. Agencies can make products

BBH have a Zag Department, for the times when everyone else zigs.
They study brand lag, and look for gaps in the market. So far they've created:

Both these products they've created they have given 75% of the company to someone else to make it their own and then help out with the design and comms of each product. Pretty nifty

Final point.

10. Agencies can use the recession to be more creative

Enough said. Simple as that.

What make a great accounts person?
A hostage negotiator - they can sell something by listening
Jerry Judge - could sell an ad without you seeing it
Nigel Bogle - has a brain the size of Pluto
Steve Culshaw - loved what he did

Are creative pitches the way forward?
We used to sell strategy, now everyone does so sell the way the brand can dominate the marketplace.

How much advertising works?
It all works, we just argue how engaging it is. 75% of it DOESN't engage.
25% DOES. In his opinion.

What gets you up in the morning?
It's brilliant, I walk into BBH, have free coffee, look at beautiful girls, get people to spend money on my idea, pay me more to make it then I get to see it in the real world. Oh how life is hard.

Ferrero Rocher

What utter gibberish this is...

Share a Special Secret at Christmas

You'll have to click the picture to watch the video I'm afraid, then please come back here to comment. Taxing I know. Apologies.

Christmas Tree Hat Competition Launches

[insert funny picture of me wearing it here]

The Christmas Tree Party Hat is here! A little side project from me.

All you have to do is:
Cut it out the template, which can be found here (works best printed A3 if you can).

Stick it on your head.
Take a picture.
Email your pics to me - ampeel (at) hotmail (dot) co (dot) uk
Then keep checking

I'm feeling generous and have decided the most inventive picture will win a prize.

So get downloading and being snap happy.

Google Search

Have some fun without even searching for it.

Go onto Google but not just, try, (India), (Saudi Arabia) (Australia).

Then type in a word, any word you want and wait for the suggestions to appear. My Art Director, CR, found that if you type "removing" into google uk and google india you get VERY different answers.

So on my quest for knowledge, here are a few more... they are very funny.

The UK, very safe and normal. Removing a radiator, artex and chewing gum.
The US, still rather common to us. Removing wallpaper, acrylic nails and blood stains(slightly odd).Australia is slightly more interesting. Removing ticks from humans, fake tan and floor tiles.Saudi Arabia gets interesting. Removing erhm, pubic hair, hair by laser and windows live messenger?! A very strange set of results.And now for India, the highlight and reason behind this post. Top hit, removing BRA, second, removing DRESS, third, removing PUBIC HAIR, fourth, removing CLOTHES, fifth, removing blackheads, sixth, removing DRESS ONE BY ONE and it doesn't get any better.
Go on, try any other "safe" words and see what foreign Google's come up with. Post your weird and wonderful results in the comments.

Swan recreates famous scene

We all know the famous Tiananmen Square picture.Well now a swan wants his own piece of history. Not 4 tanks though, just an East Coast train at Peterborough. John Gelson, spokesman for East Coast Trains, said: "The swan sat on the track in front of the train then it moved away to another track where it delayed another couple of trains.

"After 40 minutes it was captured by Network Rail staff and thankfully it did not cause a major delay. The good news is the swan was not hurt in any way in this highly unusual incident.

Clients from Hell

I was sent the link to Clients from Hell blog today. It's a very interesting read. I could be there for hours laughing at some clients misfortune. Mean I know. Here's a few gems to get you started.

  • “Make sure you tell the Googles of the world that the site will be launching soon so it places high in their results.”

  • "Can you move that logo up 1/63 of an inch?"

  • “I understand that you prefer to use photoshop, but we don’t feel like that program is universal enough. If you could do all of the design work in Microsoft Paint it would be easier for us to edit what you do and give you an idea of the changes we want.”

Web ad on The Sun

Woah woah woah... I thought I'd clicked something even though I knew I hadn't. Then I noticed the web ad for Very (aka Littlewoods) had done something either very clever or deeply disturbing.

It had skinned the original layout and replaced the news articles with their own products.

Here's what happened:

I went on the Sun, I know, I know. But there's a banner and an MPU. The banner isn't interactive and doesn't do a lot.

But the MPU is an expandable one, but a sneaky one at that.

Roll over the MPU and almost without realising the 'Jordan and Peter latest', Zac, Mr. Becks and even the old granny disappear.
To be replaced by Very goods in the same size image boxes.
I'm not sure I like this. It's very clever and is a very good way of getting products noticed especially when they become "news stories" but it's almost too clever and really obtrusive.
I'd love to know who made it and what you think.

Mr. T - World of Warcraft

Seriously, what is he doing?

"I pity the fool!"

What is it with dodgy emails?

A bit too much information for my liking. By the way it was completely not meant to tell every what she was up to, more to do your time sheets by the end of the month. Harmless mistake... honest.