Out to Launch

Commemorating UNICEF's 2009 Tap Project and World Water Week (March 22-28), Publicis in the West placed melting ice sculptures shaped like children throughout Seattle. The "Ice Children" were on display at Westlake Center alongside a sign asking passersby: "What happens to children when the water runs out." "Each day, 4,200 children die from a lack of drinking water," continues the sign. The sculptures, seen here, here and here, aimed to raise funds and awareness for clean drinking water. Optimedia handled the media buy.

Nike+ launched a TV, outdoor, print and online campaign in Europe called "Men vs Women." Promoting Nike Running, the TV ad is overflowing with familiar sports figures like marathoner Paula Radcliffe, dancer Sofia Boutella, tennis ace Roger Federer and NBA player Tony Parker, whose wife, actress Eva Longoria, also makes an appearance. The spot pits men vs. women in an effort to recruit runners to join, a community where runners can track their progress. Whichever sex runs the most kilometers wins. With Paula Radcliffe on our side, there's no stopping us! See if you can spot her in the ad, seen here. My favorite part of the ad is the final leg of the race, with one man and woman fighting for the win. Print ads, seen here, here, here, here, here and here, promote Nike sneakers, apparel and the Men vs Women challenge, using copy such as, "trounce the girls in comfort" and "stability leads to victory." 72andSunny created the campaign.



This ad gets me excited for baseball season and my New York Mets. Jose Reyes, shortstop for the Mets, stars in a TV ad for Under Armour. The ad promotes Under Armour's new Heater baseball cleat while showcasing what Reyes does best: steal bases. In the ad, Reyes successfully steals two bases, while wearing a form-fitting blue Under Armour shirt. "If I get a good jump, I'm a take two bags," says Reyes. Watch the ad here. Shilo produced the campaign, which was created in-house.

MARS is launching its first new candy bar in more than 20 years. Called Fling, the new candy is sold solely in California. Launching a new line of candy makes sense in this down economy, given that brands such as Cadbury, Hershey's and Nestle are reporting an increase in sales. The print and TV campaign plays off the candy's name and low caloric content (85 per finger), using the tag line, "naughty, but not that naughty." The TV spot follows a woman into a dressing room, where it appears that a man awaits. She slips off her dress and the viewers see an overheard shot of the dressing rooms. In one room, a man is struggling with a pair of jeans, while the woman tries on a dress and eats a Fling. See the ad here. Print ads continue the flirtatious tone, with headlines like "Pleasure yourself," "Your boyfriend doesn't need to know" and "Try it in public." The background of the ads are light pink and black; the copy is written in dark pink, which becomes difficult to read in some ads when it collides with the two background shades. See the ads here, here, here, here, here, here and here. I wrangled up some samples and they're really good. I shared them with my co-workers, and one male colleague was thrown off by the packaging. I gave him a single-packaged "finger" to which he responded, "What's this? It looks like a tampon." BBDO created the campaign and MediaVest handled the media buy.

Da Vinci never saw this coming. This viral simultaneously turns my stomach and impresses me. Minneapolis-based artist Phil Hansen has painted the Mona Lisa using burgers and burger grease, to promote the Roastburger from Arby's. The time-lapsed video, part of an online campaign created by Fletcher Martin, watches Hansen and his greasy hands create a heart-clogging masterpiece in 90 seconds. As the Mona Greasa takes shape, a URL is prominently displayed at the bottom of the video. brings viewers to a site for Arby's "never fried, never greasy" Roastburgers. Watch the masterpiece unfold here.

When you have Padma Lakshmi sitting on a stoop with her dress hiked up, seductively eating a large hamburger, you cross-brand that burger and get more bang for your buck. Carl's Jr. refers to it as the Western bacon six-dollar burger. Hardee's calls it the Western bacon thickburger. Most viewers will call it the "who cares, there's an attractive woman scoffing down a big hunk of meat," burger. The spots refer to her as an author and culinary expert. But no mention of her job as host of Bravo's "Top Chef." I wonder why... Since I'm a stickler, I have the 30- and 60-second spots, for both Carl's Jr. and Hardee's. You're welcome. See the ads here, here, here and here, created by Mendelsohn Zien.

Monuta, a funeral company in Holland, wants the living to think about their funerals. Buried or cremated? Church service or simple family gathering? The company interviewed young and seemingly healthy individuals and asked them what their ideal send-off would resemble, and what you have are three people describing their wishes. Touching, yes, but still über creepy. See the spots here, here and here. THEY created the campaign and handled the media buy.

Suite Sole, a sneaker boutique in Charleston, SC, came up with a unique way to advertise its store and curb residents' dogs at the same time. The company installed branded doggie bag dispensers in the neighborhood near its store with the idea that people love sneakers and people love dogs. The combination of sneakers with dog poop, however, does not leave people feeling warm and fuzzy. See the dispensers here and here, created by Hook.

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