Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Nike Makes Being a Soccer Superstar Look Cool (as if they needed help)

How often does a spot come along that makes you feel cool just by watching it? Nike delivers again with "Write the Future" produced and aired in anticipation of the World Cup. I watched the commercial a couple of weeks ago, and marveled at the fact that the three minute spot still feels packed. The sheer visual and narrative scope takes the viewer on a roller-coaster, time-traveling spree through the eyes of the starting lineup of the international soccer scene: Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba, Wayne Rooney, Fabio Cannavaro, Franck Ribery, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas, Theo Walcott, Patrice Evra, Gerard Pique, Ronaldinho, Landon Donovan, Tim Howard and Thiago Silva all make appearances (and Homer Simpson, Kobe Bryant and Roger Federer show up for momentary cameos). I think it would have been more entertaining if the commercial had explored the hypothetical consequences if Ronaldo's World Cup performance had gone sour. I'm not in the habit of denigrating talented people, but the sheer obnoxiousness of this photo...

warrants some exploration of an alternate reality in which Christiano Ronaldo isn't perpetually the object of idolatry. Anyway, in addition to being a whirlwind visual feast, "Write the Future" really brings home the fact that soccer is an international phenomenon in which the U.S. does not participate. The commercial rests on the premise that the actions of soccer players have a huge effect on reality. Sadly, in North America this isn't the case. And Nike makes being a part of the international soccer community look so enjoyable that I want to rush down to my YMCA this very moment and organize an amateur soccer team in the hopes of drumming up more grassroots support for the sport that the rest of the world is obsessed with. Come one, U.S.A. Let's try something new in 2010.

Friday, June 18, 2010

BP Cares (What You Think, Maybe)

Shaming BP seems to be all that the general public can do at the moment while we wait for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill to be resolved.The above is a pointed spoof of BP efforts (and attitude!) repositioned as a coffee spill. Particular highlights include "the public" staged with a doughnut, and spoofs of Kevin Costner's and the hair booms efforts.

As a marketer, one of the most interesting aspects of this crisis to me has been BP's disastrous public response to this catastrophe. May I suggest putting a muzzle on Tony Hayward and hiring someone with a gentle Southern twang to break the news of the inevitable future failures on the part of the company to contain the spill.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Linchpin Meetup!

Are you indispensable? If not, do you want to be? (Some people don't.) If the answer to those two questions is yes, then I hope you'll join myself and other like-minded folks at the Dallas-area (or wherever you live!) Linchpin Meetup, inspired by Seth Godin's book Linchpin on June 14, 2010. A linchpin by Godin's definition is a person without whom a company/organization/team/family/situation will eventually fall apart. By maintaining a pithy daily blog that manages to be both uncompromising and inspiring, Godin has created a community of current and future linchpins, and the Linchpin Meetup website describes the event as "a completely non-commercial chance to find and connect with other members of Seth's tribe, an opportunity to talk, challenge, and inspire your fellow travelers". Not sure what that means in particular, but I'm looking forward to it. So...
  1. Check out Seth and the Meetup site
  2. Get interested
  3. Find your local Linchpin Meetup
  4. Go