I create context. I also write blog posts:

When Music And Advertising Converge

Posted: February 13th, 2011 | Author: | 1 Comment »


I’ve noticed an unexpected trend over the last couple of years when it comes to music. No, it’s not that I listen almost exclusively on my iPod now, and it’s not that I buy only albums from online sellers like iTunes and Amazon instead of at my local cd shop, which used to be a favorite hobby of mine. And it’s not that I rarely ever read the liner notes anymore because, frankly, digital albums don’t really come with liner notes anymore. All of those things are trends that have hit the music world in the last few years, yes, but I’m talking about something else.

I’m talking about where I’m exposed to new music. Sure, I get recommendations from my friends and Pandora’s always helpful, but some of my favorite songs recently have popped into my head not because I hear them at a party or at a bar, but because I hear them in commercials.

Obviously, Apple comes to mind as an innovator in terms of getting songs stuck in our heads, but other brands have latched on as well. Here are just a few examples that come to the top of my head quickly:

Temper Trap — Sweet Disposition
This one, for me, is synonymous with Conan, since it played at every commercial break for the first week that I streamed Conan’s new show at TeamCoco.com.

Shiny Toy Guns — Major Tom
I don’t know anything about the band or cars, but every time I hear this, I think of the Lincoln MKZ. That’s effective.

Dawes — When My Time Comes
This one is a commercial that I’ve seen quite a bit recently, and I’ve got to say, it’s catchy. (TIM ALLEN!)

Remember this one from the Winter Olympics in Vancouver?

Why is this happening so much right now? Well, advertising — used-car and hack lawyer ads aside — is changing. It’s harder to find viewers who don’t fast forward over commercials or pay for a premium service that doesn’t have any. When they do manage to stumble on a pocket of viewers, companies need to do everything in their power to make sure they capture their attention. This is done with commercials that entertain, that make us laugh, that tell a story. And, lately, commercials that have fantastic soundtracks.

It’s a trend that I hope continues.


Done Deal!

Posted: February 8th, 2011 | Author: | Tags: | 5 Comments »


Yesterday, I got the idea to try something clever using social media and this blog. I offered to make a deal with the Saranac Brewery: In exchange for a picture of someone at the brewery looking at the webpage of couple of my friends who are looking for jobs in the Mohawk Valley, I would go out, buy a case of Saranac beer, and post a photo here. An even exchange of sorts, a photo for a photo.

Well, Saranac one-upped me, because when I woke up this morning, there was an email in my inbox from Fred Matt… Of the F.X. Matt Brewing Company, which owns Saranac (according to their website, he’s the President and Chief Operating Officer of the whole brewery… no big deal). He didn’t send back a photo of the website, but he did offer to talk to Stef and Joe and do what he can to help them. That’s the definition of “above and beyond” in my book.

So here’s to Stef and Joe and Fred and Saranac! Drink up!


To show I held up my end of the deal, here’s the 12 pack of Pale Ale I picked up today… and 2 sixers of Black & Tan for good measure!

Thanks to everyone who’s been following along and for all the tweets and retweets!


Hey Saranac Brewery, I’ll Make You A Deal

Posted: February 7th, 2011 | Author: | 2 Comments »

UPDATE: Saranac was up for the challenge! Click here to see how things turned out!
-Pete, 2 / 8 / 11

“Forget about the pretty girl…a Saranac will do just fine!”

THE IDEA:
I really like your beer. I also really like my friend Stef and her husband Joe. They’re really smart and talented people, and they’re looking for jobs in your neck of the woods. See, Stef’s from Herkimer, and after going out and going to some pretty good schools and starting a family with Joe, she wants to head back to the Mohawk Valley. But they need jobs before they can move their family.

Now, you don’t have to hire them. I’m just asking you to take a look and see if they have anything to offer. They’ve created a helpful website here: hireusmohawkvalley.com/.

So with that in mind, here’s

THE DEAL:
Since I like your beer and I like Stef and Joe, I’m going to offer you this bargain. Send me a screenshot of the above website on your monitor and I’ll go out and buy a case of Saranac Pale Ale and I’ll send you a picture of that. Nothing more: you go to their website, I buy your beer. Everybody wins: you get to check out a potential employee (two, in fact!), they get their website checked out by potential employers, and I get beer! It’s that simple.

(For the record, they didn’t put me up to this. I was just listening to some moe. this morning and thought, “what a great fit!”)


An American James Bond?

Posted: February 2nd, 2011 | Author: | No Comments »


So I was thinking the other day that it might be clever to write a character who’s the American version of James Bond. Like the American version of the office, just with that catchy theme song…

Except that it wouldn’t be clever. It would be crappy. A British sense of sophistication (read: arrogance) and the cheesy jokes and the accent that drops women’s pants are what make James Bond James Bond. There is no American version of that, because those things don’t exist in America.

But if you did go through with it and wanted to write an American James Bond, one who survives on a healthy appetite of ass-kicking and shallow women, well then… you’d have Daniel Craig’s Bond, wouldn’t you?

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