Out to Launch

Getty Images offers therapeutic sessions. Unexpressed big ideas can be hazardous to your health. Symantec launches an adverband. Let's launch!

Madison Square Garden went back in time yesterday, turning the "Sword in the Stone" into the Stick in the Ice for a promotion for the Versus network and the NHL. The promotion, celebrating the beginning of the NHL season, offered hockey fans 10 seconds to remove one of 10 hockey sticks from a giant block of ice. Prizes ranged from hockey sticks autographed by an NHL player and a trip to the NHL All-Star game, to a trip to Game 1 of the Stanley Cup and $10,000 cash. The ice block measured six-and-a-half feet high by five feet wide and six feet deep. In four other markets the network had pucks frozen in ice blocks; radio stations gave out clues to where the blocks of ice were located. The first person to find the ice and get the puck out won a prize. What a great concept. TAXI New York created the campaign in collaboration with FreeCar Media.



What are you looking at? Is it G-rated? Getty Images is offering free psychoanalysis to creative folks with "Gestalt," an ongoing contest through November 3. Three Rorschach images are paired with ten different royalty-free Getty images. Your mission? Find which of the ten images has been placed in the Rorschach. I found two out of three. And you're timed, so study the pictures quickly! Players with a Getty account will be entered into a daily drawing to win $1,000 as well as a drawing at the end of the promotion to win one of six fantasy experiences that include attending a Formula 1 race in Monaco, visiting the Galapagos Islands with National Geographic, or attending a major sporting event in London and working alongside a Getty Images' photographer. Print ads are running in Creativity, CMYK, Advertising, Age, Applied Arts, Creative Review, Campaign, Eye, Novum, Page, Horizont, Etapes, CB News, Strategies and AdMedia. Online ads can be found on AdWeek, AdAge, Communication Arts, K10K, Brand Republic, Adline, Etapes, CB News, Novum and AdForum. remerinc handled all aspects of the campaign.

Does Slash really rock out while plugged into a VW? Inquiring minds want to know. Volkswagen teamed up with First Act in a partnership that awards customers who purchase or lease a VW with their very own First Act GarageMaster electric guitar, which can be played via the car's audio system. That sure beats flowers in a VW Beetle. The initiative is being supported via print, TV and online components. The first TV ad features Slash, late of Guns N' Roses and current member of Velvet Revolver. Click here to watch Slash. Upcoming ads feature John Mayer (talk about an 180-degree turn of spokesmen) and actor Christopher Guest, who played Nigel Tufnel in "This Is Spinal Tap." Check out where you can take interactive guitar lessons with Dweezil Zappa, upload video of users channeling their inner Slash to compete in VW's rock god battle, and learn more about the promotion. And now for some random facts about the guitars: Each guitar displays the VIN number of a person's car and comes equipped with a guitar strap made of safety belts. Crispin Porter + Bogusky created the campaign and handled the media planning. Mediacom handled the buying.

The Stiller Centre, a life sciences facility in Ontario, has launched a lighthearted campaign promoting the Stiller Centre Prize, an award that offers science grads the resources to develop their ideas into viable business models. The campaign includes two posters and a viral video directing traffic to The posters play off the URL name and convey the consequences of letting a big idea marinate in your head for too long. "Bench" shows a young man sitting next to an elderly man. The young guy's idea is so big that it has literally blown off his head. The old man looks inconvenienced, covered in soot and with his newspaper on fire. "Cat" features a headless woman cleaning out her cat's litter box. The site URL is the lone copy on both ads. The viral video, found on, shows a student about to pull a prank on his friend, who's typing away on his computer. Before the prank can be fulfilled, the friend's head explodes... and he still keeps typing. The posters are running in post-secondary academic institutions across Canada, the U.S., the United Kingdom and Australia. GJP Advertising created the campaign and rTraction developed the Web site.

What's an adverband, you might ask? Allow me to introduce RockDotRock. Symantec, with the help of Night Agency, has launched RockDotRock, an '80s rock/hair band that has happily sold its soul to the world of advertising. This band's mission is to produce catchy songs that educate people about how to protect themselves from Internet crime. RockDotRock will be produced, promoted, booked and branded as Symantec's own adverband. A CD will be released at the end of the month, distributed solely online, called "The Confidential E.P." --named after the soon-to-launch NortonConfidential product. The band has its own Web site where users can listen to songs, download images and view hilarious song lyrics. The band also has a MySpace page (quelle surprise) where fans can learn about show times and download songs for free. Each time someone goes to download a song they'll have the option to click for a free download of the latest in software developments from Symantec.

London. Paris. Queens? That's the tagline for Steve Madden's holiday and winter print campaigns. Shot by fashion photographer Miles Aldridge, the holiday ads are launching in November issues of InStyle, Lucky, Glamour and Cosmopolitan. In addition, outdoor ads will run in Los Angeles and New York. The holiday ads feature a model dressed in a black dress and shoes about to walk up a red carpet backdrop... with a view of New York in the background. Click here to see the holiday ad. The winter ad takes on a similar feel, this time with a tropical backdrop shown. This ad will run in December issues of InStyle, Lucky, Cosmopolitan, Elle and Vanity Fair. Outdoor venues remain the same. Click here to see the winter ad.Amalgamated created the campaign and media buying was handled in-house.

Finding the right pair of jeans takes blood, sweat and tears. A print and online campaign for Dish Jeans highlights the idea that creating jeans is an equally painstaking task. The Canadian brand is making its U.S. debut in issues of Nylon, Vice, Paper, Lucky, and Teen Vogue. The five ads show Dish jeans and tops being filed, blow-torched and airbrushed--all while being worn. The campaign also includes three 60-second mock "History of Fashion" Webisodes, where consumers hammer and saw their Dish Jeans into shape. The BrainStorm Group created the campaign, its first work for the client. Media buying was handled in-house.

Hill Holliday created a set of four TV ads for the Cleveland Clinic earlier this summer. "Piano" begins with a vacant piano and a voiceover explaining that Parkinson's had left the narrator unable to play the piano until he sought treatment at CC. The spot ends with an elderly set of hands playing the piano and the tagline: "Find the confidence to face any condition." A pair of sneakers is the subject of "Marathon." A man undergoing a lung transplant vows to run again, no matter how long it takes. "Fetch" profiles a woman who underwent heart surgery and bought herself a dog...  a Great Dane. A leukemia survivor isn't afraid to venture out in public places in "Playground." The ads are running on CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, Fox News and Discovery Health. HH handled all aspects of the campaign.

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