Con Williamson, CCO, EuroRSCG New York
Stephen Leps, Creative Director, Zig, Chicago
Microsoft: People Ready Business
CW: The only thing that hangs me up here is that they're kind of stating the obvious. I've never been in a meeting where we wrap by making sure that no one is on the same page. Nonetheless, I like the execution and it feels right for Microsoft—good, simple and to the point. Three stars.
SL: I had to do some research to get the whole story behind this campaign. I agree with the direction Microsoft is going, by taking a more humanistic approach to business. I just don't think this ad does the job of taking me far enough that I want to seek out more information. The animated TV spots are more effective in doing this. I'm not sure if the media dollars on this type of execution is money well spent. Two stars.
Transport for London: Kill Your Speed
CW:Ah, the classic "dead kid everywhere you look" PSA spot. I'm always conflicted by these. It works in terms of being disturbing, as there is nothing more off-putting than seeing this kid's twisted body everywhere. But these PSA's use a pretty similar graphic formula to remind us of what we already know—how horrible child abuse, drug abuse and drunk driving are. In fact, immediately after watching this spot I drove too fast trying to get to He's Just Not That Into You before the previews started. Two stars.
SL:How many times have we seen spots where you go through different scenarios and the same thing happens over and over again? If you take this approach, whatever that "thing" is better be compelling. In this case, it is. No one would ever want to experience the horror of that image haunting you throughout your day. It's something that we can imagine but hope to never experience. Emotional connection made. Simple message. Well executed. Job well done. Four stars.
Computer Tan: Infomercial
CW: While I was almost fooled into thinking I too could actually get a little color on my pasty cheeks without leaving my chair, in the end, I just don't think this ad was done very well. As I explored the ComputerTan site, it seemed so legitimate that I had to wonder if people got to the actual payoff before getting tired of it and realizing what a ridiculous idea it is...or if it were actually real...wait, I might be confused myself. Oh right, I was gonna say that I was not a fan of this one. Two stars.
SL: Living in Chicago, I could use a little color at this time of year. So I have to admit I thought for a second that this could be real. And why not? Converting your laptop into tanning bulbs doesn't seem like that far-fetched of an idea. I'm just not sure if this has that element of "passaroundability" that all great viral has. I guess I would show the person next to me but that's where it would probably stop. Three stars.
CW: My mom always said, "No one likes a know it all," so I don't believe I like this company—they know too much and they're rubbing it in my face. The spot is not bad, but not great. It felt a bit familiar, was not very surprising and the woman actively annoyed me. That being said, it earned an extra point for correctly defining bootylicious. Three stars.
SL: KGB: a service for your phone that allows you to ask questions and get answers using a downloaded application, or simple text message. But was that clear in the spot? I struggled with that. Wearing my client hat, I think the goal should be to get people to the website, but that didn't come through. The whole Q&A thing also feels a bit familiar. There are better ways to talk about what appears to be a good product. Two stars.
Seth is a member of the NYC Rogue Disc Golfer league.
Computer Tan: Infomercial
Who knew the British are as passionate about tanning as our own Jersey Shore girls? They didn't offer protective glasses once in the computer tanning "bed," and overall this wasn't as intimidating as Lungs of a Smoker commercials. Thanks for the visual; I'll stick to tanning the old fashioned way...on the beach. Three stars.