Making the switch from Weather to Sports is RICK BOOTH, just named Director of Creative Services at New England Sports Network. Yes, that means he’s going to move from Atlanta to Beantown. Rick is a design intensive guy, having been Broadcast Design Supervisor at CNN before he moved up I-75 to do design and then become VP of Creative at TWC. TWC is The Weather Channel NOT Time Warner Cable. With his background at Ringling School of Design in Sarasota, he will no doubt score big for NE Sports Net. Well Dunne! Rick.
Hey. all you who have to bag and tag those epis (and cringe at the thought), promo pro MARTY IKER has an answer to that problem. In a nutshell, “Instant Episodics” is a subscription system/service that automatically bags & tags episodic promos for local stations, and it also can automate sponsored snipe production, insertion and billing. Drop by and see for yourself. NAB Booth SL4528 Mon-Wed. Of course it’s in Vegas.
Think About This: “Only when your consciousness is totally focused on the moment you are in can you receive whatever gift, lesson, or delight that moment has to offer.” ~ Barbara de Angelis
Lots of news, plus Super Bowl recaps…whew! This is such a busy time after that holiday lull. Lt’s start with two news items:
One – Getting her VP strikes is CHRISTINE BRAGAN (a lovely Irish name indeed) who is now the Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Rainbow Media. A CTAM member, she’s a grad of the NY Institute of Technology and she’s worked at Cablevision. Well Dunne! Ms. Bragan. Can we say you have Bragan rights?
Second, WANYA LUCAS has been named Chief Marketing Officer of Discovery Communications. She’ll begin March 24, which leaves her plenty of time to make the move from Atlanta to Silver Spring, MD. She’s been at the Weather Channel, where she was GM and EVP. She’s got an MBA from Wharton and is definitely an amazing talent. Well Dunne!
Now, let’ talk spots. The spots on a Dalmatian? Sure, that could segue our way into our first Super Bowl recap, this one from CIL FRAZIER, who’s CSD at WVTM, Media General’s NBC affil in beautiful Birmingham, AL. Take it away, Cil: The Budweiser “Rocky” spot stood out in my mind. I’m a sucker for lovable animals. It was a great good guy wins feel-good spot and if I were a beer drinker, Bud would be at the top of my list. Being a dyed-in-the-Big-Orange Tennessee Vols fan, I must say Peyton Manning could sell me just about anything, including Gatorade. Who is Derek Jeter anyway?
Now, it’s time for Bay News 9’s talented Director of Marketing LINDA GRANGER: My Favorite Ad – I had a really hard time picking my favorite Super Bowl spot this year. The Clydesdale in Training was classic – everything in that ad fell perfectly into place. Bridgestone did a great job in the Hidden Obstacle spot where the driver approaches a deer in the road, then Alice Cooper and then Richard Simmons – I’m not sure I would have swerved to miss Richard J. Planter’s Ugly Girl attracting the good looking guys with her cashew scent was hilarious – that spot had me glued to the set waiting for the pay off. Naomi Campbell and the lizards dancing to M.J.’s Thriller – the crowd at the Super Bowl Party literally stopped and erupted in laughter watching that commercial – Life Water got their money’s worth on that one. I thought 2008 delivered a great line up of Super Bowl ads. I have to say my FAVORITE is Tide-to-Go’s Talking Stain commercial. We’ve all been there…doesn’t matter if it’s a stain, a mole (molee, molee, molee) or a birthmark in the shape (and size) of Texas, you fixate on it – it distracts you – and it seems to take on a life of it’s own. That was beautifully illustrated in Tide’s spot. The interviewer couldn’t bring him self to ignore this crazed stain, screaming gibberish over the interviewee. The spot demonstrated humor to get my attention, the star of the spot was the stain – no better spokesperson for a stain eraser then an obnoxious stain that deserves to be erased – and they extended the shelf life of the spot by directing me another medium, their web site www.mytalkingstain.com. Now, I went to mytalkingstain.com and it is just as creative as the commercial. You can meet several talking stains that scream gibberish – get crazy stain downloads, register to win a Tide branded iPod, and the best feature of this web site – YOU can become the talking stain in the ad! You upload your face and voila – your face is added to the stain in the actual commercial! If you’re going to spend the millions on a Super Bowl ad – why not push from the on air spot to the web. Frankly, I’m surprised more advertisers didn’t follow suit.
Just up the road in Huntsville, AL at ABC affil WAAY, CSD STEVE WOMACK weighs in: Godfather references, badger “gnaws off young man’s face”, man in mouse suit beats man in suit, freakish giant pigeons destroy city block!!! Let us not forget… a 7-foot Shaq playing the part of a jockey (jockey’s are usually small in stature). None of it matters when you have a talking baby. Wins every time. Sure nuts make you sexy… but, everyone knows that! The E-Trade baby shows us how easy on-line trading can be. And, so exciting… you might spit up a little. Clowns are freaky… he hit the nail on the head. Talking Baby wins! Most commercials were not flattering this Superbowl. Very stale. Hollywood realizes the writers’ strike will offer a surge at the box office if TV gets bottlenecked in reruns. Movies, movies, movies. Half of the commercials referenced something from the past, something that has been done. Rocky, I Dream of Jennie, Night at the Roxbury, Carmen, “Look Who’s Talking”… seemed to be very little thought or playing it too safe. And, when did foreign people who speak with an accent become a sales tool? Really!? Buy our beer… WHY?… because these guys can’t pronounce it! At least it was new, fresh… and done before. My kingdom for a talking baby!!! Sure, it’s been done before… but, “it’s like butta.” That E-Trade baby actually called me a week ago and told me to take New York and the under. Thanks E-Trade baby!
And last but certainly not least today is BILL HARTNETT (say hi to John!), Senior Vice President/Advertising and Promotion for The NBC Agency, East Coast: I was really disappointed by the commercials this year. Nothing was incredible, but I liked Rocky Clydesdale, the Doritos Mousetrap and the first E-Trade Baby spot. I hated the Lizards and Carmen Electra. I wish I had something pithy and insightful to say, but the game so overshadowed any of the spots, I got nothing.