Out to Launch

AARP says there is life after 50. Ecko Unlimited shows off its Spring 2004 collection. airs anti-Bush ads. Welcome to highlights of ad campaigns launched this week.

The PGA TOUR has launched a TV campaign aimed at raising player profiles and generating awareness of its commitment to charity in the communities that hold official tournaments. The campaign's four 30-second commercials combine the TOUR's "These Guys Are Good" player spots with its "Giving Back" charity theme. Players Ernie Els, Chad Campbell, Jesper Parnevik, Duffy Waldorf, and Jerry Kelly are featured in humorous and unusual settings, participating in a variety of charitable activities. All four spots launched this month and will air throughout the year during golf telecasts, NFL football, NCAA basketball, and on SportsCenter. In one spot, "Hammer," Jerry Kelly is helping to build a house, and as he prepares to hammer a nail, a worker raises his hands and says, "Quiet, please" as Kelly takes a full swing at the nail. He gets a round of applause, and then hands off his hammer to his caddie. GSD&M created the campaign.



Life doesn't end at 50. It does according to some marketers, though. Which is why the AARP has launched a campaign, entitled "Written Off," created by GSD&M. The campaign shows vibrant 50-year-olds in body bags, along with crime scene chalk markings and body tags. The tagline's payoff is "These days, doctors don't pronounce you dead. Marketers do," and "to most marketers, consumers die the minute they turn 50." A teaser campaign ran in December, followed by a January launch in Advertising Age, Adweek, Mediaweek, Brandweek, and their respective Websites, and on MediaPost (Out to Launch's parent company), Medialife, New York Times Online,,Yahoo and SRDS. Other elements of the campaign includes direct mail targeting media buyers with sympathy cards that say: "Sorry for your loss... and for missing out on over $400 billion worth of disposable income."

The AFL is getting some help from celebrity team co-owners Jon Bon Jovi (Philadelphia Soul) and John Elway (Colorado Crush) to promote the upcoming 2004 season. The two will star in a two-minute mini-movie that will run in 400 Regal Entertainment Group theaters nationwide from Jan. 9 to 29. In the mini-movie, produced by The NBC Agency, Elway goes to Bon Jovi's house to welcome him to the AFL. The greeting doesn't go that well, and both men decide to "take it inside" and play a game between their teams inside Bon Jovi's house. The trailer was cut down into :20 and :30 spots to be used by AFL teams in local markets. The mini-movie will also run in all Champs Sports and Aaron's Sales and Lease Ownership locations nationwide, as well as in Best Buy, Circuit City, and Sears retail outlets.

Ecko Unlimited launched a print advertising campaign to coincide with the debut of its Spring 2004 collection. The campaign, "Dreamnasium II," is a follow-up to the company's Fall 2003 print campaign, "Dreamnasium." The campaign features an eclectic mix of celebrities including: Hugh Hefner, Fat Joe, DJ Mix Master Mike of the Beastie Boys, Talib Kweli, Dead Prez, and VJ Julissa. "Dreamnasium II" will reflect upon the idea that over the years the American Dream has become diluted. The campaign hopes to deflate cultural conventions and bring back the dream. The campaign will launch in more than 20 magazines and will run from February through July. The ads were created in-house. Voter Fund, a citizen advocacy group, launched an online campaign promoting its political advertising contest. More than 11 million ads appeared on AOL News,, CNN, the Onion, Salon, and other news sites. The ads feature citizen produced video content submitted to the contest; the ads asked viewers to pick their favorite ad. The ad campaign and contest allowed people to vote for the best ad in three categories: the funniest ad, best-animated ad, and best youth market ad. @dvocacy Inc. developed the ads in conjunction with EyeWonder.

The Advertising Council and the National PTA (Parent Teacher Association) have launched a PSA to encourage parents to become more involved in their children's school and education. Created pro bono by J. Walter Thompson-Chicago and Mendoza Dillon, the campaign targets English- and Spanish-speaking parents of school-age children. The campaign includes TV, radio, newspaper, magazine, outdoor, and Internet spots. The English-language television PSAs feature Charles Barkley, Kathy Ireland, Anthony Edwards, and Luke Perry. In each spot, a celebrity presents viewers with a pop quiz about their knowledge of pop culture. The final question of the quiz tests the viewers' knowledge of their kids' school - questioning if parents may be more familiar with pop culture and celebrities than with what is occurring in their kids' schools.

Jose Cuervo Margaritas and former MTV VJ Karen Duffy have teamed up for the "Win Duffy For A Day" promotion. As part of the Grand Prize package, one winner will receive a visit from Duffy, who will share entertaining tips and recipes. Consumers can also win an all-expense paid trip for two to attend "Karen Duffy's Party Secrets from the Pro" classes being held in Chicago, Dallas, and New York. One hundred people will win an autographed copy of Duffy's upcoming cookbook. Point-of-Sale material featuring the "Win Duffy For A Day" promotion will begin appearing on bottle packaging in off-premise locations on Apr. 1.The contest ends in July.

In website launches this week:

The Opinion Exchange is a newly launched online community business based in Chicago. The Website is designed to promote the analysis and discussion of important issues and concerns facing society. This includes: the 2004 Presidential Election, local campaign politics, business, war & terror, and social concerns. The site is free and is designed to act as a soapbox for any registered users to vote, contribute, and discuss any opinions on any topic.

Abstract Edge has launched a Website for the recently launched luxury vehicle service LimoLiner. The site's development included LimoLiner's logo design, site design, and an on-line reservation system. The LimoLiner is a first-class, 28-passenger vehicle that offers commuters an alternative to plane or train services. The LimoLiner offers riders Internet access, power outlets, conference tables, complimentary newspapers and magazines, and an onboard travel assistant.

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