Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Public Mood

Today the Conference Board used the term "plummets" to describe the February level for their widely cited Consumer Confidence Index.

The Conference Board news release included just the last nine monthly reports. Here is what the last 19 months look like (since August, 2007).

The index now stands at 25.0. The index base of 100 is keyed to the year 1985. The current level of 25.0 is the lowest level recorded by this index which was started in 1967.

The Conference Board employs a leading research firm to sample 3,000 households representative of the U.S. population. Survey participants respond to five questions concerning current business conditions and their expectations for the future.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Advertising & Hard Times

Advertising is always most compelling when it speaks to core values.

This spot from Shelter, the UK housing and homeless charity, employs the house of cards metaphor, a somber tone, and the viewpoint of the commuter train ride through a cityscape to bring home the reality of the housing crisis. The music is by Radiohead.

The commercial was done by Leo Burnett in London.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Advertising & Energy Drinks

It started with Dr Pepper... "the most original soft drink ever in the whole wide world." Then came Mountain Dew and Red Bull. You know the story. Energetic beverages combined with energetic advertising.

Here's the latest from Pepsi. The work was done by BBDO in Paris.

The umbrella was a nice touch.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Advertising & Mood States

Psychological studies indicate people in positive mood states tend to do a better job of integrating new information than people in negative or neutral mood states.

It is also reported that people in positive mood states may tend to engage in heuristic thinking rather than systematic thinking.

This commercial from Fiat shows how a highly improbable message can ask for the order in a charming and almost intuitive way.

The spot was part of the 2007 relaunch of the brand positioning this "city car" to the youthful and discerning market segments.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Thoughts about Brands & Valentine's Day

It is the the thought that counts. But, it has to be the right thought presented in the right way. This leads us to brands that help us reduce the risk of going astray. That is, after all, what the best brands do.

This Hallmark commercial for Valentine's Day demonstrates how the simple gesture of a greeting card becomes a gift of a lifetime with the assistance of a valued brand.

This commercial was done by Y&R New York in 1984.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Emotion in Advertising

Emotion is the current topic in my Psychology of Advertising course. When it comes to feelings and advertising, the audience knows what is real and relevant.

Here's a key frame from a classic Johnson & Johnson commercial.

The idea for the commercial was to film that most emotional moment when babies are first handed to their mothers in their hospital rooms.

That's the emotion. The strategic purpose of the commercial is to position certain J&J products and, importantly, to communicate the core values of the Johnson & Johnson Corporate Credo.

The commercial invites you to become part of the J&J family. It was done by Y&R New York. A classic, it ran in the early 1980s.

Claire Dalton commented on the J&J work (please see her comments below) and recommended a new Gerber commercial for it's similar strengths. Many thanks go to Claire for pointing out this spot!

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, February 9, 2009


The Cadbury classic and viral commercials drew the most attention last week. Erin Lamberty commented on the "Here today, goo tomorrow" campaign and asked about the agency doing the work. Thanks Erin!

The "Goo" campaign is done by Saatchi & Saatchi in London. Here's the latest work. They show that advertising need not be on the Web to be involving and interactive.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Super Commercials

Warm emotion secured two of the three top spots in the USA Today AdMeter poll of the 2009 Super Bowl commercials. The Budweiser clydesdale horses got our attention with two aspirational stories to reinforce the core values of the brand.

Doritos claimed the top spot with slap stick humor. But, with a sample size of 288, does an 8.46 score on the AdMeter really differ from 8.42?

A 60-second commercial for hulu was shown during the hyper-exciting fourth quarter of the game. It appears to be below average on the AdMeter (6.29 vs. a 6.66 average score for the brand sponsored commercials), nevertheless this spot shows us what advertising can be.

The hulu advertising agency is Crispin Porter + Bogusky.

Also during the fourth quarter of the game, a GE spot spoke to our shared concerns about energy use and GE's role in the technology to manage energy grids more efficiently.

GE's spot is both charming and strategically smart. It was in the middle of the likability ratings, but it positioned the company quite well to the broad reach audience.

Copyright © 2009 by John Eighmey. All Rights Reserved.