Out to Launch

Absolut dissects its vodka. Cabot Stains withstand tidal waves. Zune shows off its impressive stack of music. Let's launch!

The Surfrider Foundation is making waves in its new campaign that illustrates how quickly marine life is disappearing and how much trash litters beaches. A large sand sculpture was built on a California beach and left to naturally deteriorate. A sign was buried inside the sculpture that said, "Pollution and beach development are destroying marine life. This quickly." Watch the video here. A walrus comes to the rescue of a family being kicked off a private beach in another video, seen here. In addition, signs were placed at playgrounds calling the area hazardous and contaminated, similar to signs seen at beaches. The best part of the campaign, however, is trashy. As in, trash was collected from area beaches, packaged to look like seafood, and displayed at a farmers market. Cigarettes, rusty aerosol cans, rusty chains, a brick, chunks of Styrofoam, plastic toys and condoms were packaged as the catch of the day. Click here, here, here, here, here, here and here to view poster versions of items used. Saatchi & Saatchi LA created the pro bono campaign.



Pfizer Australia launched a TV and outdoor campaign called "Yes Master," making the inner voice of nicotine addiction an actual entity. The TV spot shows a man arguing with his "master" (a pack of cigarettes) over quitting smoking. And the master is housed in a bell jar, not unlike the one used for the rose in "Beauty and the Beast." The ad encourages smokers to talk to their doctors and get help quitting. See the ad here. The ad also drives smokers to a Web site offering information on nicotine addiction and questions to ask their doctors. Pub ads, seen here and here, also star the "master." Ursa Communications created the campaign, Suede created the Web site and Mediacom handled the media buy.

You can learn a lot from the latest TV spot for Cabot Stains. For starters, it confirms that earbuds could distract wearers from important events. And when living near the water, it's always best to have little to no furnishings and your mailbox located away from your house. A man neglects to notice the "Tidal Wave" that crashed down onto his house while his back was turned and his earbuds were presumably playing. He returns to his soaking wet house and deck, which still looks good, despite being subjected to harsh elements. The only difference he sees: his fishbowl now houses a piranha, not goldfish. Watch the ad here. Euro RSCG Chicago created the campaign and MPG Chicago handled the media buy. 

Microsoft launched a microsite promoting its 2008 Office for Mac software. And there's not a single jab at Macs... that I could find. contains links to buy and upgrade software, demos of each product (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Entourage) and short animated videos of  Office for Mac products working together to create a seamless operation. In "Ducks in a row," a family of ducks, symbolizing the family of Microsoft products, is swimming dangerously close to a drain. They are rescued by an unmanned rowboat. Now, the ducks are in a row. Flying people help one another reach the end result of physically being on the same page in another video. McCann Worldgroup San Francisco was lead agency on the campaign and Firstborn served as digital partner on the site.

AT&T launched a Mother's Day TV spot for GoPhone, its prepaid cell phone. Just what every mom wants. The ad is simple and pretty. A bevy of flowers bloom open to reveal their succulent nectar: GoPhones. Look for the bleeding hearts, one of my favorite flowers. Click here to test your knowledge of flowers. BBDO New York created the campaign and mediaedge:cia handled the media buy.

Dissect a bottle of Absolut vodka, and what you're left with is shards of glass and vodka. An international TV post running in Germany, Russia, the UK, Canada and Mexico slices an Absolut bottle while describing the brand's obsession to detail. "In an Absolut World, over 100 years of obsessing over the details can only yield one thing: the true taste of vodka," says the voiceover. Watch the ad here. Print ads dissect glassware and the vodka's natural ingredients, including mangos and pears. See the ads here and here. TBWA/Chiat/Day New York created the campaign and OMD handled the media buy.

A Dell computer is present and in attendance, so you don't have to be, for a table tennis battle in "Faces." Two men are eagerly awaiting the results of a table tennis match when the camera reveals that both men are watching the game via webcam on a Dell computer. There's only one winner in the game, seen here. Mother New York created the campaign and Mediacom handled the media buy.

Zune launched a TV spot Monday promoting the MP3 player's unlimited music pass for $14.99 a month using stacks of records. As in vinyl. "For the love of beats, imagine paying for one album but getting every album. The music never stops with Zune Pass," says a series of album covers shown as they're scanned by browsing hands. See the ad here. T.A.G. San Francisco created the campaign and Universal McCann handled the media buy.
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