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Monk Goes Mobile

“Join the Monk mobile fan club.” This is the new commercial playing on USA these days. Monk has gone mobile and is making it easier than ever for people to stay in touch with everyone’s favorite nutty detective.

This summer the final season of Monk is coming to the public, and to get people prepared USA and the creators of Monk are teaming together to get the word out to the public. When people sign up for the Mobile Monk Fan Club they receive five messages each week pertaining to the show.

1. “Watch to Win Questions – See if you have what it takes to be the ultimate Monk insider and win prizes!”

2. “Monk’s Mind Stumper Game – Think your detective skills rival”

3. “Adrian Monk’s? Test yourself with this new weekly riddle game”

4. “Phobia of the Week”

5. “Tune-In Reminders

http://www.usanetwork.com/series/monk/community/mobile/

Monk also offers a WAP site where people can read blogs, show recaps, and look at photos, among other things. Visit the site at http://monkish.mobi

new4I noticed lately that many of the advertisements on television have been dealing with “going green” by advertising their new products that are eco-friendly. But TV advertising isn’t the only one that has been going green – magazines have as well. Lucky Magazine teams up with “earth-friendly sites” to create their latest April 2009 issue. The spring issue brings the latest and greatest on green style from fashion to beauty and even furnishings for your home.

I found it interesting that this particular magazine has been dealing with combining their publications more and more with their own online site, as well as other online shopping sites. I think it important for magazines to take a stance in the “go green” revolution. They need to be able to give back to the community somehow, as they are very large users of paper. I think by showing the community that they are at least trying to make some good of the situation is very important. And I think it bears well for their profitable needs as well. Eco friendly advertisements stand out right now. People are interested in how they too can get involved in saving the planet…even if it is only by one shoe at a time.

Some of the websites mentioned are:

http://www.palmacollection.com
*www.nimli.com
http://www.endless.com
*www.beklina.com
http://www.alternativeapparel.com
http://www.shopintuition.com
http://www.spreegirl.com
http://www.junoandjove.com
*www.thegreenloop.com
http://www.swedishhasbeens.com
*www.greenwithglamour.com

LIZ.NET

The new LIZ.net created for employees only has definitely caught my interest. The company’s new website definitely surpasses their old one in every way, shape and form. The new design layout is easy to navigate through. Although it does take a bit of getting used to, once you know and understand what information is contained under each of the links, it’s a breeze. And the amount of information an employee can find on the website is outstanding. They recently posted an advertisement for the NY Botanical Garden’s Orchid event. I would have never known that such an event was taking place if it wasn’t for the LIZ website.

The website contains all sorts of information, but I think the layout is what does it for me. It is just the right blend of artsy meets simple and sophisticated. There are great pictures and great stories. And the layout is done in white, silver and black – very classy and professional. You can tell you are dealing with a legitimate website and it makes LIZ corporate look like they are on top of what is going. They have links and blogs about the newest designs, fashions, events, etc. that are taking place around the world.

Isaac Mizrahi and Tim Gun often blog on the website about things that they are investing their time and energy in to, and share with the reader/viewer their perspective on a plethora of different topics. There is a calendar maintained on the website that contains the information for when the different LIZ events will be taking place. And they make it a priority to keep news feeds going of each and every occasion all of their companies are taking place in. I wish I could give you a link to the website, but I am only able to access it from my work computer. So, you’ll just have to take my word for it that it is by far one of the best websites I have seen in a very long time.

Let’s talk creative web design. Many websites out there struggle with finding a happy medium between creating easy navigation and great graphics, without over doing everything and still managing to keep the customer interested. Building a website really is like creating a piece of artwork. It reminds me so much of painting.

First you have to get your ideas together and research, research, research. Next, you mold those ideas into palette so that you know exactly what you are working with. And once you’ve got your major ideas down you begin to map out the sizing and design of the page/painting. And then the real work begins. You place things or start sketching and realize that something doesn’t quite look right or it makes the viewer’s eye run off the page and you have to start all over again until you get the measurements right. So then once the drawing or links are set and you feel comfortable in adding color and more graphics to fill up the white areas, your creation really starts to come into fruition. And sometimes, you just get it right and it turns out perfect on the first try. Other times, unfortunately, you end up having to paint the canvas white and start again.

When it comes to web design, there really aren’t any set guidelines or rules, much like painting. However, you know as a viewer yourself, that certain website layouts absolutely work better than others. So then, why is it that there are still so many websites out there that just can’t seem to get it right?

In Style Magazine happens to be my favorite publication out there. Their website on the other hand leaves A LOT to be desired. The website’s main page is an information overload with too many pictures and boxes of short stories or comments. It looks more like a website for a trashy magazine than the classy one that it is. Granted they use the same fonts and colors that the magazine does, so there is a similar feel there for the viewer to take in…yet, something is still missing. It has no character, no voice, nothing to make the viewer really be able to relate to. The website completely lost the feel of a magazine and is just simply a name dropping, celebrity overkill. Don’t get me wrong, I want to know what the stars are wearing as much as the next person, but I also want to be able to visit the website and feel like I’m reading that abnormally wide and thick magazine that stands out amongst the crowd.

Luckily, In Style has also jumped on the emerging media bandwagon and added a link for “5 More Ways to Get In Style.” You can receive it by subscribing or giving it as a gift of course, but now you can also join their newsletter, have messages sent to your phone, or receive videos on the latest and greatest trends. I guess you could say, at least that got one thing right.

http://www.instyle.com/instyle/in_hpofie0908_cvr

img_1104Coca Cola was one of the companies that I thought did a really great job of marketing to different minority groups. When visiting the world of coke, you immediately feel like you are seeing coke from around the world. When you first arrive and meet your tour guide for the first part of the tour, she/he speaks to you in a multitude of different languages. She asks where you are from and how far you have traveled and then will ask you how you are doing and if you are enjoying your stay in your native tongue. She also goes through the history of how Coca Cola began and shows you different pieces of art work from throughout time.

Next, you enter a theater where you see a special version of how coke is made. The commercial uses silly animated characters, each with their own accent and personality. You are also greeted by a slew of other employees all of which happened to be of different descents. Then they send you off on your own to explore the rest of the building. There is a 3-D movie that takes you on a journey of how coke is made. The movie takes you around the world to different countries and tells the tale of how each place influenced the taste of Coke. Next, there is a movie room that you can go to sit in where you can see all the different commercials Coca Cola has running right now around the world. In other countries, Coca Cola has different names and tastes and each of the commercials really allow you to see how that culture interacts with the product. You also can see how different countries are influenced by different things and how Coke has used those topics in their commercials. After you are finished watching the advertisements, you can see the different pieces of art work that were made with Coke in mind on display. Each of the pieces has its own feeling. And you can see that the impression of the artist plays into the way it was made. Also, as you walk through the building there are giant Coca Cola bottles each decorated in their own outfit that represents a different country.

img_1078Lastly, there is the tasting room. This is where Coca Cola does the best job of bringing the world together. At each fountain station there are at least 12 different types of Coca Cola products, each from a different country, that you can try. And if you stand back and look at everyone in the room, you’ll notice that there is a montage of different nationalities surrounding the room and that many people are speaking different languages. It really is a beautiful site to behold, and it is funny to think that a simple drink in a red and white can could have such an influence on people everywhere.

Marketing to the Minority

Diversity and Minority websites – are they successful? I was thinking about this question and every time it came up in my mind, I went back to job sites. This was the one thing that I knew there were plenty of. I think there is no question that job sites that are based towards a minority group are going to be successful.

On www.diversityworking.com people can post their resumes and be sought out directly by the employer, as well as search for the job that fits them and apply individually.

On the website www.employmentspot.com people are able to find the “best companies for minorities” to work for.

So I’m not sure if you would say that Google’s search engine is in charge here, or just all the different websites that came up when I searched for minority job sites. Either way, marketing to the minority group when it comes to jobs, seems like a fairly easy task. There are plenty of websites out there that provide a place for people of different nationalities to find jobs.

http://www.employmentspot.com/top-lists/best-companies-for-minorities/

http://diversityjobs.com/

http://www.diversityworking.com/

“characters wanted”

I love the USA network. I think their “Character’s Approved” advertisement is one of my favorites. One of their most recent “Character Approved” winners is a man by the name of Shepard Fairey. He is the creator of the famous Barack Obama HOPE image. At only 38 years old he has his own clothing line being sold at Nordstroms, has designed album covers for Led Zepplin, The Black Eyed Peas and other musical artists, and his art-work is shown in galleries across the world. In fact, his work is now being shown at the National Portrait Gallery at the Smithsonian.

I’m sure by now all of you have seen the image I am talking about. The red, white, blue and grey color scheme with large, bold words written across the bottom and Obama’s face smack dab in the middle of the poster. Fairey’s poster has become an iconic emblem of the Obama campaign so much so that there is now a website called Obamaconme.com where you too can put your face in the celebrated poster.
This new website and Fairey’s poster has spread like wild fire. Around the time of the election, tons of people on Myspace.com and Facebook.com made their own poster on Obamaconme.com and posted it as their main picture on the other sites. And just this past January Fairey got recognized for his work by the USA network as part of their “Character’s Approved” special. Fairey now has an entire commercial on the USA network dedicated to his work as an artist and the poster that made him famous.

http://www.usanetwork.com/characterapproved/honorees/fairey/bio.html
http://www.usanetwork.com/characterapproved/honorees/fairey/index.html
http://www.obamaconme.com

Sending short films/videos to phones, do you think people would like this marketing ploy? I’m going to go ahead and say probably not. Using short films as a way to market to people was not on my top list of most effective emerging media. It’s expensive, time consuming for the maker and the viewer, and needs to have a high level of creativity to hold the viewer’s interest. All of which are not easy feats. However, something in me recently realized that people are just looking for another creative outlet to use to bring their ideas to the public. And short films by way of commercials might actually get people watching again.

People hate commercials, or at least most people do. Everyone knows that when a commercial comes on it is time to hit the bathroom or take a smoke break, etc. And with the recent explosion of DVRs and Tivos sweeping the nation, people really are avoiding commercials at all cost. So, maybe short films are the way to go. Television advertising needs to start upping their game if they are going to stay in the Ad race, because what they are offering the public now is not cutting it.

This type of entertainment focuses on using short narrative films instead of normal commercials. The idea is to concentrate on the characters and the story line rather than the product itself. But what does this mean? Are we trying to trick people into watching commercials now? Are we just spicing them up a bit, making them longer and calling them short films? Maybe if we add some famous people into the equation that will get the viewer’s attention! I’m still torn on the short film idea.

After researching some articles on this topic I found that the idea of using short films as a means of advertising has actually been around for quite some time now. And from the looks of it, it doesn’t seem to be working. So I thought lets take it a step further. What is working at this moment in time is mobile marketing, online marketing, social networking etc. If you try to take the combination of one of these and short films what do you get? Short film mobile marketing, a new means of advertising. By sending a short film in the form a video text message to people’s phones they can choose to watch the newest “commercial” from the companies they love and want to know about.

Except, are people really thrilled with receiving advertisements through their text messages? Eh. That is still to be debated. So maybe short film mobile marketing would be pushing it a bit. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see to find out.

http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/07/24/business/ad25.php

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9402E2DF163AF932A15757C0A9629C8B63

Inspector Gadget

I am a member of New York Women in Communication and was recently very disappointed in how they promoted a recent event.

The event sounded phenomenal. You had a chance to listen to and possibly meet Candace Bushnell, author of “Sex in the City,” at Diane Von Furstenberg’s flagship store in the Meat Packing district of NYC. Now if anyone out there watches the new show on MTV called The City, you will also know that this is where Whitney (the main character and one of her coworker/friend Olivia) works. But wait, it gets even better. They were providing free food and drinks, as well as giving away a free Diane Von Furstenberg dress. AND everyone at the event received a $50 coupon towards his or her next purchase of a Von Furstenberg piece. Now that is what I call an event! Unfortunately, the way it was advertised by NYWIC left a lot to be desired.

I received a direct mail piece, like I always do, for the event. The direct mail piece was extremely similar in shape, size and color to every other direct mailer they send out. Now there in lies the first big problem. Most of the direct mailers I had gotten from them recently were about picking the newest members being inducted into the NYWIC society. So when this extremely important direct mailer came, I didn’t pay it as much attention as I wish I would have. The second problem that took place was that for the first time in NYWIC history I received a recorded phone call from the society telling me about the event – a week before it was taking place. (Not so helpful, if they are already sold out of tickets.) Somewhere between reading the direct mailer and receiving my voice mail, I went on to the NYWIC website and tried to order my two allotted tickets for the event. Unluckily, I was denied. The event was sold out. So I started trying to piece the time line back together of how long it took this event to sell out. I received my mailer on a Monday or Tuesday and by Saturday of that very same week I was unable to get tickets. I’m sure they were thrilled with the turn out that the event brought in. I however, was not.

There are so many things that I wish they had done different in advertising for this event. The phone call should have been made much sooner, or at the very least before the tickets were sold out. And the direct mail piece that was sent out should have had its own twist, some pizzazz, something that would have made it catch my eye. I was really disappointed that I did not get to attend this event. It was definitely one of the first events that I would have been interested in going to. And then, I think to myself, maybe it was my fault because I did not take the time to open and read all of the emails they had sent me that week. So I went back to look to see if any of the email headers had any type of catchy phrases that would have caught my eye to begin with. The answer was and still is definitely no. This is a society based around communication…how is it then, that the one thing they messed up on was communicating properly? Or may they meant to not over-advertise the event, since there were only a certain amount of spots available. In which case, they did a great job of weeding out those people who do not inspect every inch of their mail. 

The title of the email they sent me said, “New York Women in Communication Presents”….much like every other email they send.

This was the email they sent me.

 

    


    

New York Women in Communications Presents:    

“New Year, New You” 

With special guest: Candace Bushnell, author of Sex & the CityLipstick Jungle and her latest, One Fifth Avenue


We invite you to join members of New York Women in Communications at the Meatpacking district store and showroom ofDiane von Furstenberg for an evening of much-deserved celebration, excitement and indulgences.    

All attending members are invited to bring one free guest, plus additional guests at a reduced cost.  Show your friends and colleagues the joys of a network that knows how to celebrate in style, complete with:

 

  • Champagne paired with Godiva chocolates, plus hors d’oeuvres    

  • The opportunity to meet guest speaker and 2006 Matrix Award Winner, Candace Bushnell    

  • The chance to win a dress from the DVF spring ’09 collection    

  • For attending members, a complimentary gift card to the DVF store

  
 
Register now! Limited space available! 
 

 

 

 


 

Date:
Thursday, February 26, 2009    

Time:
6 PM – 8 PM

Location: 
Diane von Furstenberg Studio
440 West 14th Street 
(between Washington Street & 10th Avenue)

Cost:

$26 members, + one free guest
$20 per each additional guest

$41 non-members    

Suggested attire: Stylish business chic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
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New York Women in Communications, Inc. | 355 Lexington Ave | 15th Fl | New York | NY | 10017

Go Ahead, Touch Me

The touch phone craze has definitely taken the country by storm. No pun intended. Because I am not even referring to Blackberry’s, but rather the LG Dare. Verizon Wireless’s most exciting touch screen phone to date has captured not only myself but thousands of others as well. The LG Dare comes equipped with a multitude of different functions. It offers a 3.2 megapixel camera, a navigation system, Qwerty keyboard, a music player that allows you download and store songs, full html Internet browser, video, etc. The list could keep going and going. It is the most fun I’ve had with a phone in quite some time.

But is it as good as the iPhone? I’ve spent the last two days navigating through the LG Dare, playing around with different options and checking sound quality in different areas (for 179.00 I have to make sure it works well), trying to decide if it lives up to the infamous iPhone. But I’m not sure it does. As fun and exciting as the LG Dare is and although it offers a plethora of different functions, the iPhone still stands alone in the touch screen category. The way the touch screen performs, although good, does not even compare to the iPhone. It just doesn’t glide as easily and typing is a lot easier as well.

I have no intentions of giving up my LG Dare; I’m a long time loyal customer of Verizon and I really do like the phone despite not being compared equally to the iPhone. But I wanted to put my new phone up to the iPhone test, because it is apparent that the iPhone is blowing all other phones out of the water right now.

One thing I will say is I wish I had this phone the night I worked till 12 am and missed the Oscars. It would have been wonderful to get to turn on my phone and get live feeds from the Oscars or even YouTube.com updates, etc. I’m certainly not complaining, you see…just comparing is all.