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Category — Social Media

How Do You Change The World?


Ok AdSavvyites, it’s time for some audience participation.

I was reading one of my favorite blogs, David Friedman’s Ideas, and he had an interesting topic: Ways to promote your political ideology. Let’s say you’re a moderately wealthy and talented individual with a strong desire to promote a certain political viewpoint. How do you go about doing it? What’s the most effective, efficient way to get it done? You want the most amount of change for the least amount of money and effort. I want to hear your ideas.

First, let’s consider some of the more common methods:
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November 29, 2008   2 Comments

Black Friday Bystanders And The Diffusion Of Responsibility

or No One Raindrop Thinks It Caused The Flood


Almost every year we hear about scenes of consumer chaos and lunatic stampedes as shoppers knock each other down while trying to snatch up quality deals on Black Friday. This year an unfortunate man in New York was trampled to death in a Wal-Mart by a bastard herd of sub-humans who didn’t even look back at his body after they crushed him to death with their very nice shoes.

They have to be sub-humans, right? That’s the only way we can rationalize something like this. This has to be a one-of-a-kind incident where a group of sociopaths were all at the same place at the same time. Real, well-adjusted people would have stopped and helped that man. You would have taken charge of that situation and helped that poor man up and scolded the people who didn’t. Everyone thinks that. But no one ever does that.
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November 28, 2008   2 Comments Sued Over False Advertisement


A former customer of has filed a class-action lawsuit against the company, saying their claims are fraudulent and they tricked him into upgrading to a gold account. Sound like a simple false advertising case, but if the case progresses, it could force, and other websites like it, to change they way they advertise.

Anthony Michaels signed up for a free member of last year. However, with only a free membership, Michaels couldn’t interact with other members or do anything interesting at all. He said that he began receiving emails from claiming that old classmates of his had been looking at his profile and trying to get in touch with him through the site. The thing is, he had to sign up for a paid membership to gain access to any messages his old classmates were trying to send him.
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November 14, 2008   15 Comments

The Power Of “Framing Effects” And Other Cognitive Biases


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

Philip Zimbardo: How ordinary people become monsters … or heroes

This is a great talk by Philip Zimbardo about what evil is. Evil, he says, is not a individual condition, it’s the result of circumstances. He cites the Stanley Milgram’s experiment on human behavior, and the Stanford prison experiment and the problems at Abu Ghraib, all leading up to the conclusion that all humans are equally capable of evil.

What does this have to do with advertising? Advertising is social psychology. To understand how advertising affects people, you have to understand why people follow the group and how the brain works. This is a wonderful video on that subject. Check it out.

October 27, 2008   2 Comments

American Apparel: Hipster Porn In Our Collective Unconcious


American Apparel doesn’t do high gloss sexy like Abercrombie or Calvin Klein. There’s no silicone or collagen or Botox. There’s no major Photoshopping or retouching the models. It’s a reflection of our idea of what sexy is as a society.

The perfect blonde on the beach is leaving our collective fantasy; our idea of sexy isn’t defined by film or by print anymore, it’s defined by the internet. Our generation has unprecedented access to smut, and it’s infiltrated our definitions of beauty and our everyday fantasies. Gonzo porn is our sensual fantasy now. Set in some freaks house as a 19 year old meth-addicted girl with low self-esteem knocks on the door. “I’m here for the party.”
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October 15, 2008   56 Comments

Amnesty Ad or Viral?

Amnesty Ad Boing Boing

There seems to be some confusion over whether these “Tibet” Amnesty ads are official, unofficial, or a viral stunt.

Regardless of their source, they are cleverly made and hard-hitting. Each highlights a human rights issue, targeting the Chinese Olympics and focusing attention on stories such as Tibet by using variations individual competitions as themes.

View the ad after the jump [

July 9, 2008   Comments Off

When an Ad Becomes a Meme

Will it blend?Sometimes advertising is clever enough to make the leap from commercial to something much more. In this particular case the small, geeky, videos have gone from gimmick to internet meme. Forget branding, this is a cult hit!

You know you have a successful ad when people send it to their friends without realizing they are promoting your brand!
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May 23, 2008   2 Comments