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Category — Political Ads

Sam Katz: He Kicks Children in the Face – Mock Political Ad

Back in August, Sam Katz, the incumbent mayor of Winnepeg accidentally kicked a teen in the head during a charity soccer match between some adult city workers and a team of kids from the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization of Manitoba. The video went viral and achieved semifame on the internet among Canadians. Now a clip from that video has shown up in a hilarious mock ad supposedly paid for by an unknown group called “FOPATKITFOC” or, “the Friends of People Against the Kicking in the Face of Children.” Nice.

Robert Mackey at the New York Times blog calls it the “mock Canadian attack ad of the year”.
Check out the original video of the facekick, complete with audio:
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October 15, 2010   Comments Off

Chi-Chi-Chi-Bama: Special Edition Obama Chia Head

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Joseph Enterprises started the Chia Pet in 1981 and it’s remained lodged in our collective unconscious every year since then because of massive advertising every holiday season and a weird kitsch appeal that never seems to get old. I honestly still think these things are cool; you do too, admit it.

Now they’re capitalizing on Obama-mania with an ultra-classy likeness of the 44th President. There are two versions of Chia Obama: Happy Chia Obama, and Determined Chia Obama. Joseph Enterprises accurately portrays the full range of our president’s emotional expressions.

Very nice. You can order your very own from the Chia Obama website

February 22, 2009   2 Comments

Consensus War: 300+ Top Economists Disagree With Obama’s “No Disagreement” Remark

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During a time of controversy, the best way to win over public opinion is to convince the public that there is no controversy. Sometimes, when an issue is too complicated for the general public to make an informed decision on their own, they rely on the opinions of experts, and politicians stop debating the points of the issue, and start debating the consensus. That’s a consensus war. It’s happening with the global warming issue, and it’s happening with the economy. A reasoned, logical debate of the finer points of the fiscal policy won’t convince the average American. The only way to win the hearts and minds of the American people is to tell them the experts opinion.

Recently, Obama attempted to shut down the controversy surrounding his so-called “stimulus” package by saying “there is no disagreement that we need action by our government, a recovery plan that will help to jumpstart the economy.” Then later saying “economists from across the political spectrum agree” on the need for this massive government spending package. Of course, that is not the case. In actuality, many, if not most, economists disagree with the stimulus package. So in response, the Cato Institute took out a full page ad in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Washington Times, and Roll Call disputing the president’s claim. Hundreds of top economists, including Nobel laureates and prominent scholars from major universities, signed the statement. There were more than 200 economists signatures on the original ad, and over 100 more have signed on since then. Read on to see the original ad:
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February 10, 2009   2 Comments

Understanding The Human Herd Mentality

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Researchers at Leeds University, led by Prof Jens Krause, performed a series of experiments where volunteers were told to randomly walk around a large hall without talking to each other. A select few were then given more detailed instructions on where to walk. The scientists discovered that people end up blindly following one or two people who appear to know where they’re going.

The published results showed that it only takes 5% of what the scientists called “informed individuals” to influence the direction of a crowd of around 200 people. The remaining 95% follow without even realizing it.
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November 11, 2008   31 Comments

The Power Of “Framing Effects” And Other Cognitive Biases

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Human beings tend to think they’re rational creatures, and that they make sound decisions based on all the available facts. They think their memory is an accurate record of things that have happened to them. But the reality is that we all have a slew of cognitive biases that can alter our thinking… and even our memories.

Psychologists have names for all the different fallacies and biases that influences our thinking: cognitive dissonance, inattentional blindness, blind spot bias, better-than-average bias, introspection illusion, self-serving bias, attribution bias, representative fallacy, availability fallacy, anchoring fallacy, hindsight bias, and the one I’ll be talking about here: framing effects
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November 6, 2008   6 Comments

Barack Obama Infomercial – 30 Minute Long Ad

Regardless of what you think about politics, we would be derelict in duties to not mention the big Obama campaign ad buy. Costing between 5 and 7 million dollars, Barak Obama purchased a 30 minute ad on 7 networks (ABC was the only major network to not participate). The thirty minute long infomercial was well produced and there is ongoing debate about whether this was a smart move by Obama or not. Our opinion was that at the end of the day it will have a very small net positive effect, but also feed into the widespread perception that Obama is buying this election.

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October 29, 2008   Comments Off

Obama Wins Ad Age’s ‘Marketer Of The Year’

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Every year hundreds of the biggest marketers, agency heads, and all manner of people involved in advertising get together at the Association of National Advertisers’ annual conference. And every year, they vote on the best advertiser of that particular year. This year Barack Obama won with a pretty substantial 36% of the vote, beating out the two runners-up Apple and Zappos.com. Nike, Coors and Sen. John McCain filled out the bottom of the vote.

“I honestly look at [Obama's] campaign and I look at it as something that we can all learn from as marketers,” said Angus Macaulay, VP-Rodale marketing solutions “To see what he’s done, to be able to create a social network and do it in a way where it’s created the tools to let people get engaged very easily. It’s very easy for people to participate.”
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October 23, 2008   1 Comment

The Psychology of Magic, Mediums, Politics, and Advertising

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Magic and advertising are both deeply rooted in manipulation, and exploiting knowledge of human psychology. One of the most important aspects of the magician’s trade is manipulating the spectators choice while at the same time tricking that spectator into thinking they willingly made the choice. Derren Brown is a master of that particular trick. Check out some Derren Brown videos at the bottom of this post.

Ironically, that type of manipulation plays a huge part in advertising as well. In fact, magicians, politicians, advertisers and mediums are all essentially doing the same thing, the difference lies in their levels of honesty. The magician is usually the only honest one.
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October 22, 2008   1 Comment

Obama Ads Appear In Xbox Live Video Games

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Barack Obama has become the first presidential candidate to advertise in a video game. The Obama campaign purchased ad space in the Xbox live versions of 18 different video games. The ads will run up until Nov. 3, and only be displayed in 10 major swing states.

The ads show that Obama is willing to embrace new technology, and that may be the most important aspect of this whole video game campaign.

Obama’s face and name will be on billboards and signs in “NBA Live ’08″, “Burnout Paradise”, “Nascar 09″, “Need For Speed Carbon”, “Need For Speed Pro Street”, “NFL on Tour”, “NHL ’09″, “Skate”, and “Guitar Hero”, among some others. And the 10 states that are targeted include some major battleground states: Ohio, Iowa, Indiana, Montana, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Nevada, New Mexico, Florida, and Colorado.
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October 15, 2008   Comments Off

McCains Surprisingly Good Looking Ad: Man In The Arena

McCain’s recent ad, Man In The Arena, is surprisingly good looking considering his other recent ads. Now, I’m talking from a purely aesthetic point of view. As far as substance goes, this ad offers nothing more than Obama’s American Promise, and everything I said about that ad can be said about this one. But still, it’s very effective advertising; more so, I think, than anything Obama has offered so far.

McCain’s ads to date have been almost entirely negative, usually with a disgusted sounding voice-over talking about things Obama has either done or not done. They were particularly acerbic and difficult to watch. This ad is different though, it optimistic, focused on McCain, and I think it portrays him in a better light to those who don’t really care about issues anyway.
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October 13, 2008   Comments Off