Celebrity Endorsements in Advertising: Smart or Lazy?

Celebrity Endorsement
Celebrity endorsements in the world of advertising are nothing new by any means. As long as celebrities and advertising have existed they’ve been intertwined, but it seems like these endorsements are prevalent now more than ever in the advertising world. And because you see a celeb in an ad every time you turn around, they must work. Advertisers wouldn’t spend so much money for so many years on a tactic that hasn’t been proven to bring in more sales. But at the same time, I sometimes have to wonder if advertisers like it because it’s just easier than conceptualizing and developing a brand new creative idea. (more…)


And This, Friends, is Why Proofreaders Exist. John Frieda Flubs Grammar

John Frieda
Although it can be disappointing at times, I’ve come to accept that people often make grammar mistakes that are usually easily avoidable. Whether it’s a misused “your/you’re” issue or a simple typo, mistakes happen. I understand. However, I hold large companies with professional marketing and advertising teams to a much higher level. These people are paid (I’m guessing) hefty salaries to write the ads and double, triple, and quadruple check them to make sure they’re accurate before sending them off to the TV world to show everybody. Apparently the team at John Frieda was so concerned about how sleek and shiny their hair was that they didn’t notice that they used the wrong form of “its.” (more…)

How English Classes Ruined My Writing

I know that’s a bit of a bold and dramatic statement, and to be fair my English teachers have done a lot of good for me too. I am proud to know the proper usage of punctuation and understand how to implement metaphors, and I have my English classes to thank for these lessons. But ever since I started considering copywriting and advertising for a living (and especially when I started blogging) I’ve realized that there’s one aspect of writing that none of my teachers emphasized: how to relate to the reader.


Is Shockvertising Effective? Why Not Happy Endings?

Scare Advertising
Over the last week we’ve had not just one, but two gut-wrenchingly powerful advertisements released that attempt to force viewers into thinking about the unpleasant but everyday problems of the world. First was the UK’s Save the Children ad, using the Second a Day technique to lead us through a year in a young Syrian girl’s shoes. What starts out looking like an uplifting video of a happy girl celebrating a birthday quickly deteriorates into a portrayal of life in a war-torn country, with the intent to inform viewers of the ongoing brutality in Syria over the last three years. Second, we saw the Women’s Day ad released Friday, focusing on the issue of domestic violence through a woman’s (Google Glass) eyes. Similarly, the video started pleasantly enough, yet quickly took a shocking turn. Both videos (which are below if you haven’t seen them) used shock advertising (shockvertising) to get their important message across, and judging by the popularity of these ads it appears that many people have taken notice. But I do have to wonder if all the shocking ads will only make us more immune to them in the future. (more…)

#Can #We #Just #Cool #It #With #The #Hashtags #Please #?

First a disclaimer: I love social media, both from a personal and a business standpoint. It’s transformed the way we connect with friends and family just as much as it’s transformed the marketing and advertising worlds. But just like any great new invention, when everyone uses it (and overuses it) it has potential to defeat the purpose. Raise your hand if you have a friend on any social media outlet (because the hashtag is no longer restrained to Twitter alone) who has to tag #every #word #as #if #they’re #all #of #equal #importance? Annoying, right? While companies may not be quite as blatant about their overuse, it’s still happening in the form of asking consumers to connect with them in any way possible. (more…)

Chicago Advertising Federation Career Day: Learning from Chi-Town’s Best

Chicago Advertising Day
On Friday I had the opportunity to travel to Chicago to attend the Chicago Advertising Federation Career Day to participate in panel discussions with advertising professionals, meet with other college students trying to break into the industry, and network with some of the biggest names in advertising (just a sample of some of the attending sponsors: Leo Burnett, Ogilvy, Microsoft, Digitas, OMD, The Onion, and many more). Despite being a long and tiring day (my introverted self is still trying to recover from all the human interaction), I learned firsthand so much about the advertising industry, and it cemented my desire to work in this field after I graduate. (more…)

4 Ways List Posts Define Millennials

Millennials10 Ways to Improve Your Relationship. 7 Exercises That Will Change Your Life. Top 20 Best Dressed Actresses at the Golden Globes. List posts seem to be the go-to format for many blog posts, and for good reason. Millennials fuel the internet more than any other generation, so we’re also fueling competition between writers seeking readers. So what is it about list posts that catch our fleeting attention? Maybe it’s the fact that we can relate to them. As weird as it seems, our preference for list posts define who we are as a generation and sum up our most prominent traits.


What Does It Take to Impress Jesus, Gandhi, and Mother Teresa? Banner Ads

Apparently just one click on UNICEF’s banner ad online is all it takes to join the ranks of the most prolific and  beloved humanitarians in history. In the newest video ad campaign called “The Good Guys” from Forsman & Bodenfors for UNICEF Sweden, Jesus, Gandhi, and Mother Teresa compliment each other on their good deeds for humanity before turning to the new guy to ask what he did that was so great. His response: he clicked a banner ad for UNICEF. (more…)

4 Tips for Creating an Advertising Portfolio

PortfolioWhether you’re going the online route or sticking with the tried and trusted physical portfolio, deciding which of your work to include (or creating work for the first time) is the toughest part. As a college student looking to work in the advertising field within the next few months, I’m realizing how critical portfolios are to just get an interview, let alone be hired. So I’ve compiled a few tips that seem to be pretty much agreed upon by experts in the industry to help you (and me!) create better ads for better portfolios. (more…)

Kmart Treads a Fine Line Between Genius and Desperation

As I’m sure many of you have already seen, Kmart’s newest Christmas commercial has aired (and gained quite a bit of attention). What starts out as a fine and dandy formal Christmas tune quickly turns into a Magic Mike meets Santa Claus rendition of “Jingle Bells.” The big question here is whether Kmart’s advertising agency (DraftFCB) had a moment of genius to bring this stumbling company back to the forefronts of retail, or if they simply succumbed to controversial ads in a moment of desperation. (more…)