Out to Launch

What car ads looked like before the employee discount phenomenon. Vegetable Viagra? Let's launch!

Night Agency kicked off a guerrilla marketing campaign yesterday for Heineken Amsterjam. Street teams were out and about in New York City clad in green uniforms and green scrolling LED belts promoting at Grand Central Terminal. The teams will be seen throughout the city (look out for them at parks, concerts, and other events) from now, up until August 20, the concert date. The concert will be held Randall's Island, N.Y. with performances from the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Snoop Dogg, among others. The concert is for adults 21 and over. In addition, a Heineken Amsterjam dedicated wall is up on the corner of Bond and Lafayette in New York City complete with scrolling LEDs to draw attention to the street-level billboard.



To promote the release of the third season of "Six Feet Under" on DVD, HBO Video decided to wrap buses... to resemble hearses. Green hearses, resembling the one driven by Claire on the show, to be exact. The buses are running in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles (private lines), and San Francisco (private lines). Interestingly enough, Los Angles and San Francisco rejected the concept for use on city lines. Boone/Oakley, Charlotte, N.C. created the campaign.

The Fremont Company, producers of Frank's Sauerkraut, wants to reinvent sauerkraut... quite possibly as the vegetable Viagra. BIGfrontier developed a Sexy Sauerkraut campaign in an effort to make the vegetable appealing to the 20- to 40-year-old demographic. The campaign highlights the K'Tini, a vodka martini made with a vermouth infused sauerkraut stuffed olive. The campaign began with a direct marketing initiative to restaurants making a free k'Tini kit available for parties. Here comes the sexy part. The second phase of the campaign consists of a series of events touting the health benefits of sauerkraut for active young adults, including studies proving libido enhancement. The campaign has hit Chicago, Milwaukee, Des Moines, Omaha, and St Louis, to name a few.

Smith Brothers Advertising has created an interesting campaign for Howard Hanna Real Estate Services to help promote the newly formed Howard Hanna Smythe Cramer (the result of Hanna's acquisition of Smythe Cramer Co.). The challenge came in introducing the new entity (with its green and gold logo) without alienating clients of Smythe Cramer, known by its red yard sign. The first spot features a series of images that would normally be red that are now green: from cherries to lips to Santa Claus. A second spot features the new Howard Hanna Smythe Cramer yard sign unfolding to reveal three primary service features - a money-back guarantee, one-stop shopping, and a "buy before you sell" program.

Labelmaker DYMO has bowed a TV and print campaign highlighting the handheld DYMO LetraTag. Targeting women 18 to 49, the campaign launched in July and will run through September. The 30-second ad depicts a series of situations in which an item is unidentifiable to a crowd or individual until labeled by a woman using the DYMO LetraTag. TV ads are running on HGTV, DIY, and Wal-Mart TV, and print ads can be found in Woman's Day, All You, and For Me. The ads are airing in the United States and Spain. North Castle Partners developed the campaign.

The Broadcasters of British Columbia and the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) launched a campaign to reduce the number of alcohol-related vehicle crashes in British Columbia and promote the CounterAttack impaired driving enforcement program. Aimed primarily at young males, the campaign includes TV, radio, and print elements. Developed by DDB Canada, the campaign addresses the realities of drinking and driving by showing, in real-time, what can happen to people who drink and drive. "Minivan," one of three TV spots, focuses on a young woman sitting in the passenger side of a minivan. As the van swerves erratically around a corner, she looks over at the driver and asks: "When are you going to stop drinking and driving? After one of your friends gives you a dirty look? Or are you going to wait until a cop gives you a warning? Or are you going to have to run through a stop sign?" Just as the woman finishes the sentence, the minivan runs through a stop sign and is hit by a large truck. The ad concludes with the tag line: "When will you stop drinking and driving?"

Ford Motor Company's Mercury brand has launched a campaign for its 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid. Nothing out of the ordinary, right? Unless you factor in that the car, for the time being, is being sold exclusively online. It should come as no surprise that the campaign supporting the hybrid vehicle is also solely online. The campaign is targeting the environmentally conscious on Yahoo!, Google, and staging home page takeovers on and In addition, the hybrid will have a presence on the Web sites of various environmental organizations, including the Sierra Club and National Geographic. The campaign concludes at the end of August. Y&R Detroit created the campaign.

Draft London launched an on- and offline campaign this month for Saab's 9-3 SportWagon. Offline, Draft created a 100-page adventure game book featuring the Saab 9-3 SportWagon, where readers can choose their own "adventure," making various choices at each stage of the story. The adventure follows the story of a man trying to find his family. These types of books were popular with children when I was growing up. Online, an interactive adventure game was developed using footage filmed around various locations in the UK. Once again, players will be able to choose their own path through the adventure, but this time, players can "challenge-a-friend," seeing if others can beat their time. Prizes will be offered to those completing the challenge and include the chance to win an adventure weekend with the use of a SportWagon.

Version2 gave Deutsch New York a helping hand for the latest LensCrafters spot. "Happiness" is a 60-second spot that asks, "Happiness, would you like some?" as patrons parade and dance around in satisfaction with LensCrafters' services. The unconditional happiness guarantee is a 30-day no commitment policy on frames and the ability to keep trying new ones until the perfect pair is found. Motion graphics, mimicking an eye chart, rapidly flash to spell out key phrases announced by the voiceover. From late-night hours to eye exams to $100 off deals, it's no wonder why people are so happy. "Now where are you going to get your glasses?" concludes the voiceover. "You'll see. We're better."

This week's Web site launches include a commerce/educational site for women and a design-your-own bathroom site.

Studeo developed an e-commerce site for Metrobelle. Metrobelle aims to answer and educate women about issues that affect them. The site offers health information, name-brand products, and birth control prescriptions. Topics discussed on the site include hair loss, yeast infections, and whether or not some women are predisposed to breast cancer. The home page also offers a series of "Today's Specials" for purchase.

Scripps' has launched a Bath Design Center with various in-place sponsors. Users can click on a featured bathroom or a designer bathroom and play around with all the options. Visitors can click and choose virtually every aspect of a bath including wall color, flooring, and fixtures. The user starts with one of the six most common floor plans or has the choice to update a luxury showroom (designed by a sponsor).

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