Out to Launch

What would Visa do without Michael Phelps? Yahoo! Brazil rebrands. Let's launch!

AT&T launched two amusing TV ads that are quasi-Olympic themed, at best. A husband and wife throw a house party in the first ad. The Olympics are playing in the background while food is served on a dustpan, and cocktail weenies are offered to guests on nails, not toothpicks. Watch the ad here. A man is swimming in what is presumably a pool in the next ad, seen here. Unfortunately, the man is swimming in a manmade pond at a golf course. Both ads use the same theme of someone needing something and end with a voiceover that says, "Proud to connect fans of Team USA." GSD&M Idea City created the campaign and Mediaedge:cia handled the media buy.


advertisement launched three consecutive one-page ads in the politics section of Newsweek magazine under its "A Fuller Spectrum of News" umbrella that describes the Web site's unbiased political coverage compared to its competitors. The first ad features boxes in all shades of blue and the URL, Ad number two is full of red hues and drives readers to The final ad contains all the colors of the rainbow and's tagline. See the ads here, here and here. And yes, MSNBC did buy the two URLs featured in the ads. You know I had to check. SS+K New York created the campaign and media buying was handled in-house.

Life is already one big roller coaster, but throw a Jeep into the mix and you're bound to have an enjoyable adrenaline ride. The 30-second TV spot features a group of friends driving up and down hills, and sideways across sand dunes while the clanking noise from a roller coaster resonates in the background. The spot concludes with the friends readying for round two and the copy: "Have fun out there. Jeep." Watch the ad here, created by CUTWATER.

Yahoo! Brazil revamped its homepage and launched a brand campaign that coincided with a partial lunar eclipse that took place on Aug.16 and was visible over South America. TV, online, radio and print ads revealed a new tagline: "Do Not Underestimate the Purple," which will be utilized in future campaigns. The company also promoted the eclipse as its very own, working with a faux company called Celestial Marketing that specialized in marketing services like advertising on the moon, spaceship brand takeover, and creating global experiences such as branded eclipses. See the ads here, here and here, created by LiveAd and Night Agency.

Immediately following Michael Phelps' feat of winning eight gold medals in one Olympics, Visa ran an ad created in advance, just in case Phelps achieved the impossible. Voiceover Morgan Freeman congratulates Phelps and describes his accomplishment as one that needs a new adjective to describe it. That word had already been coined: Phelpsian. Watch the ad here. TBWA/Chiat/Day created the campaign and OMD handled the media buy.

Volkswagen launched an online and print campaign in China promoting its redesigned Beetle. The first ad shows a young Chinese woman dressed in a classic Qi Pao dress from the 1930s, next to a present-day young woman dressed in a contemporary Qi Pao dress; the second ad shows a traditional Chinese chair aside a contemporary chair; and the final ad shows the original Beetle opposite the 2008 model. A Beetle stamp of approval can be found on each ad, seen here, here and here and the tagline's translation is, "The New Beetle: A Timeless Classic." There's also a Chinese language Web site featuring images from the campaign, the history of the Beetle and car specs. DMG China created the campaign.

Farmers Insurance launched a Spanish-language television spot on Telemundo during the Olympics, starring Edward James Olmos the company's action-hero spokesman. The ad has an Indiana Jones vibe to it, except it's in Spanish. Since the ad has no subtitles and I took French in school, here's my take on the plot: no matter where you seek refuge (your car, or house) Farmers Insurance will save the day and protect what's important. I tried! Watch the ad here, created by Accentmarketing.

Levi's jeans double as a Slinky in a viral video created by CUTWATER. A guy whips off his jeans and throws them on the ground while his friend conveniently records the jeans rolling down a hilly street, in a manner similar to a Slinky. A car stops to watch the event and is rear-ended by another vehicle, prompting the two guys to run for the hills and hide from those involved in the fender-bender. Watch the video here.

Islands Restaurants launched its first major branding campaign, "Mainlanders Welcome," in California, Nevada, Arizona, Hawaii and Colorado. Radio, online, and outdoor ads celebrate the Mainlander using parables of "islands wisdom." "Mainlander drops guac on tie. Licks tie in front of co-worker. Some register disgust, others admiration," reads one ad. I would render admiration. See the ad here. "Mainlander shares Mai Tai with girlfriend. Girlfriend wants to share a little more with Mainlander. Check please for Mainlander," says another ad. Voyage created the campaign and handled the media buy.
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