Monday, February 28, 2011

Can Pauly D Sell Miracles or Miracle Whip?

Pauly D is the most loved or most sane (Vinny slept with Snooki remember?) cast mate of Jersey Shore and has played a supporting role on the show as an awkward situation ice breaker, peacemaker and reliable reminder of when the "Cabs Ah Heeah!". Last week, Pauly D went from Supporting Actor to Best Actor with his debut in a National TV commercial for Miracle Whip which aired during American Idol and again during Jersey Shore and the Oscars. While Pauly D's hatred for Miracle Whip is adorable, I would say his Oscar-nomination-worthy performance was probably this little scene from last week's episode:

The days of The Situation and Snooki are over, as Pauly D is the one to watch on screen and off in the endorsement space. While Miracle Whip isn't a direct relationship with G.T.L. (gym, tanning, laundry), it is definitely a better product endorsement than Ronnie's Xenadrine weight loss infomercial. The quirky connection between Pauly D and Miracle Whip works, because both are sort of misunderstood, seen as strange by many and loved by some. The spot received buzz on Twitter and "Miracle Whip" was trending when the spot premiered on Wednesday. Watch the spot here, and ask yourself, Can Pauly D sell Miracle Whip a Miracle?

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Blatant Product Placement Version of Britney's "Hold It Against Me" Video

This was not the version that premiered last night on MTV, because I would definitely remember if Britney was trying to sell me her new perfume Radiance, Make Up For Ever Professional foundation, SONY flat screen TVs and online dating service Plenty of Fish. Despite the forced advertising of these products, I actually prefer this version of the video because there is MORE DANCING!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

How Watson Ironically Humanizes IBM

I watched my first full episode of Jeopardy ever this week to see a computer, IBM's Watson, play against two Jeopardy All Stars Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter. I know how badly computers can own at games from playing chess on a PC, so I wasn't expecting any less than dominance from Watson. What really surprised me was the educational format of the three day Jeopardy series. Really the IBM Jeopardy Challenge should have been called the "Love IBM Again" campaign, because I think I'm in love with them again. 

Scattered throughout the half hour game show were short montages that showed the intelligence and passion of the IBM people behind Watson through personal interviews and commentary on how Watson can be applied to real industries. The execution of the partnership between Jeopardy and IBM is branding genius because it re-associates IBM with innovation and also revealed a more human and transparent side to a company that has traditionally been somewhat invisible. In the end both parties win, as Jeopardy probably benefited from the extra buzz and IBM, well now has a well-loved computer mascot.

If you missed the episodes you should definitely check out IBM's recap and commentary here. You can see how genuinely proud the creators of Watson are as they sit nervously in the audience worried everytime Watson gets an answer wrong and cheer when Watson is being unintentionally funny (but doesn't know it because he's a computer... duh.).

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Lil Wayne Proves He is America's Favorite Cookie (or the Biggest Cookie Monster!)

Today, Oreo is attempting to break the Guinness World Record for most Facebook "likes" on a single post to solidify Oreo as the world's most "liked" cookie (surely Oreo is outgrowing its tagline as America's Favorite Cookie). Oreo currently has 100,642 likes which, according to the comment below, means its reached the record:
However, another chocolately treat had to rain on Oreo's good news--no not Ding Dongs--actually it was rapper Lil Wayne. I heard it first from Mashable that Lil Wayne decided to break some records himself today:
Lil Wayne probably did beat the record for most posts in 24 hours, because according to his Facebook Profile page, Lil Wayne has 430,686 likes in 6 hours--that is four times more likes than Oreo in almost half the amount of time.
I have never seen a "like" war or Social Brand attack of this scale before (moral of the story don't mess with Rappers or Justin Bieber fans); however, Oreo doesn't necessarily lose just because it doesn't beat the world record. With the added media attention and competitive factor, this probably catalyzed participation of all (Non-Lil Wayne) Oreo fans. And when it comes down to it, a pack of Oreos average at $4 while Lil Wayne's singles are selling at $1.29 per track on iTunes, how many Oreos do you think you will consume in your lifetime? A Milli probably.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

New York Fashion Week: Rebecca Minkoff After Party

Thanks to my college roomie and PR friend Gabs, last night I attended the Rebecca Minkoff Fashion Week after party at The Griffin in the Meatpacking District. Not usually my scene but I was excited to get dressed up nevertheless! We arrived early to avoid crowds and was surprised to see camera crews set up around a giant Rebecca Minkoff CAKE! Cake designers from the Food Network had created a ferris wheel of cake handbags, purses and shoes. Later in the night, I had quick taste of the cake and almost choked on a candied pearl--these cakes are definitely not for eating.

The Griffin was everything I would expect from a MPD club, velvet sofas, chandelier fixtures and lots of mirrors. The best part of the night was DJ Becka Diamond (who is actually from Boston!) who played some good dancy pop tunes (not all top 40) and even played Gaga's new very-Madonna-esque single Born This Way.
It's nice to get out of Brooklyn once in a while.

A Snag In My Sewing Project

You know the saying "never judge a book by its cover," well never judge a sewing machine by it's COLOR. After spending two months searching for a 110V to 240V power converter and buying dressmakers' scissors, chalk, pins, seam rippers, tracing paper and fabric, I discovered that my green John Lewis Mini sewing machine can't sew! I knew I was buying it for aesthetic reasons (it being Green) and not performance but I did not think it would suck this hard. Anyways, tough lesson learned: when on vacation in London don't bring home a sewing machine. Now I've hit a snag in my USMNT outfits until I find/buy/borrow a real sewing machine. Leads anyone?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Saturday Fashion District Splurge

Now that my mean green sewing machine finally works, I can get down to making some stuff! First project: patriotic outfits for the US Men's National Soccer Team versus Argentina game in March. Not sure what I am making yet but I bought 3 yards of navy blue bamboo knit and a yard of red & white stripped jersey from Mood Designer Fabrics in the fashion district. I also ventured to M&J trimmings and bought some sweet ass sequined stars and blue chains. Tim Gunn would be proud. I'm hoping my grandmother's seamstress genes have been passed onto me.

Wish me luck and maybe my friend Hannah who will also have to wear my GO USA! creations.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Force is Strong for VW's New Commerical, A Scene-by-Scene Commentary

With over 2 million views (I'll take credit for 20 of them) in one day on YouTube, VW's "The Force" commercial starring a mini Darth Vader and the new 2012 Passat is already generating buzz even before airing in this Sunday's Super Bowl. Created by VW's US agency of record Deutsch LA, the one-minute spot is as epic as Star Wars itself--it's a tall tale of a tiny and determined boy who attempts and fails to use "the force" to defeat large and innocent household objects (those laundry machines are HUGE), but when faced against his largest opponent (a sleek looking Passat), mini Darth Vader and his really expressive hands are victorious.

The rewatch value on this spot is ridiculous (I'm probably up to 30 views by now). Maybe it's because I love Star Wars and I REALLY love kids... but probably has more to do with the fact that me and the rest of America BELIEVE THE FORCE IS REAL. Great consumer discovery Deutsch, now how did you get around using Star Wars without crediting George Lucas... poor Droid ads.

You can watch the full spot here, OR... 

Enjoy a special scene-by-scene commentary:
 Opening scene--John Williams' The Imperial March is playing, Commerical is already awesome but wait it gets better... DARTH VADER!
First Mission, Destroy Stupid Pointless Stationary Bike... Huuhtsszzzzzz (force sounds)
HHUUHHTZZZZZZ... the new Life Fitness heart monitoring ability is too powerful...
Onto Cody, my stupid lazy dog who broke my Nintendo DS! Huhhtsszzzzzzz (wide open fingers force!)
Cody is paralyzed by the force so I will destroy other innocent things in the meantime, HUUHHTSZZZ TAKE THAT LARGE CLEANING MACHINES (time out, who the hell has washing machines this large in their homes)
I will suck your stupid brains out baby Leia if the pinkness of this room hasn't done so already, Huhhtsszzzzz...
 Ahhh your innocent glare is too strong for my force... don't. look. into. the. eyes.
If I squeeze my fingers really carefully and hold very still maybe I can force my mom to buy me Lunchables
NOO MOM, not PB&J again!... What is that I hear? My evil arch nemesis Skywalker, now a more powerful 170 horsepower V6 engine car? 
NO DAD, get out of my WAY!
"We meet again, Young Skywalker." (Great Interior Product Shot, touche)
(Darth Vader's force pierces through Skywalker. Skywalker lets out one last moan)
HUH? Did I defeat the Young Skywalker?
No, actually push button start is a a new feature of the 2012 Passat that allows you to heat up the car from the outside of the vehicle (taken directly from VW's website)
This is me (Zeny) still speaking now: The dad is kind of hot, he has a cute Creative Director vibe
Darth Vader discovers how truly powerful he is and realizes he needs a nap. End Scene.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I Love My Hoodie, So Does the Rest of America

The hoodie is as much an American clothing staple as blue jeans and a cotton shirt. Celebrities like Kristen Stewart and Justin Bieber wear them, CEOs like Mark Zuckerberg (and maybe just Mark Zuckerberg) wear them and even Jedi Knights have hoods! The reason why "hoodies" have become a recent obsession of mine is because my apartment is always freezing and I have become accustomed to throwing my hoodie on whatever I am wearing before I leave my apartment. It somehow in my mind makes me more presentable, even if I am wearing my pajamas underneath. A fashion faux pas or not, Americans find comfort (publicly acceptable snuggie!), anonymity (big hoods are good for hiding in) and practicality (pockets for holding keys, wallet and warming hands) in the one piece of clothing we all agree is awesome for both boys and girls--the hoodieeee.