#HowDoesHeShave: Man of Steel Marketing

Until two days ago, I had NO IDEA there was a new “Superman” movie coming out. Hello, Man of Steel marketing blitz! With over 100 marketing partners, it’s interesting to watch the tie-ins unfold in NYC, and to see how brands turn movie product placement into fully integrated campaigns.

Gillette tackles a curious dilemma — How Does Superman Shave? Today, I spotted these subway ads that drive consumers to HowDoesHeShave.com and the Twitter handle #HowDoesHeShave. I personally think the URL, SupermanShave.com would have been easier to remember and it’s available, but maybe due to legal restrictions they couldn’t use the word “Superman”.


With microsites akin to dinosaurs in the digital world, where does this URL drive to? A branded YouTube page. Though the average user might not even notice this unless they looked at how the browser redirects in their toolbar.


On this page, you can watch video theories from renowned scientists/comedians, including Mayim Bialik (forever Blossom to me) on how Superman achieves this feat. The videos were produced well and they’re quick (a minute and a half each). Each video has approximately 400K to 550K+ views. Not only are fans watching —  they’re VOTING, too. Diehard Superman fans claim the hero does it his laser vision and a mirror, but the other theories are much more interesting!  The YouTube page also contains fan tweets continuously updating and of course, a call to purchase razors on Gillette.com.  That is, if you want to look like the Man of Steel (yes, gentlemen, you do).


So what’s the buzz on Twitter’s #HowDoesHeShave?

While most tweets are positive with users posting photos of Superman shaving with laser beams or of their prepubescent boyfriends and a razor, there are always those who go for the risque photo opp. But hey that’s the RISK you take with user-generated content, and we’re all adults, right?


Kudos to Gillette who has demonstrated how to successfully implement a fully integrated campaign around a movie product placement.  People are talking about Gillette, people are eager to see the flick. A win-win for everyone.

Gillette, you’ve made my DigiDay!


P.S. The latest Man of Steel trailer, sponsored by NOKIA.  Looks amazing!


Man of Steel Grabs Me Underground

When I go to the movies I have two guilty pleasures —  buttered popcorn (so bleechhh afterwards, but so good while you’re munching!) and the previews. I may exclaim “Oh my God, not another trailer!!!” but the truth is I love those green screens. But yesterday, I encountered the Man of Steel underground.

Skipping along the stretch from 59th to 58th St. near Columbus Circle, I let Russell Crowe invite me into his world. No longer was his face just plastered into a billboard, he was talking to me…and those German tourists.Man of Steel Out of Home Advertising

Man of Steel Advertising

At first I kept walking, but the sheer size of the TV billboards stopped me. Besides I wanted to know — was Russell Crowe the new Superman?  The more I watched, I kept thinking there should be more interactive elements to keep someone engaged. What about a ticket kiosk right there? Where every 20th person that purchased advanced tickets won a free pair? Or I could enter my phone number and get a text reminder to purchase tickets opening weekend.

Or having the ol’ marketing ploy — the cutout, where people could pose behind a Man of Steel frame and post to Instagram for a chance to win free tickets. Cheesy stuff like that works in New York! Adding a social component is FREE advertising, and they already have over 750,000 likes on Facebook. C’mon Warner Bros., integrate your Out of Home with Your Digital!

The display was engaging, but missing that interactive element. Although they did get me one more time as I headed for the steps:

Man of Steel Subway Steps

Am I the only one amazed how they cut and paste a giant billboard and make it fit seamlessly on subway steps??

Check out the Man of Steel Trailer and microsite filled with steel-clanging sounds. Go ahead, see what I’m talking about.

Man of Steel you grabbed my attention, now get more interactive and make my DigiDay!


Vitamin Water: #MakeBoringBrilliant

Last night, I was walking through the 59th St. subway station when a large video screen billboard caught my eye:

“Bored? press here for brilliance.”

I’ve been waiting for the day to be recognized by a digital billboard, “Hey Rainbow, where ya going? Why the hurry? Hey, your shoelace is untied!” While we’re not quite there yet, I do appreciate any type of entertainment that distracts me from the mile-long walk underground from one platform to another.


Being “bored” and in a somewhat empty station at night, I did it — I pressed the BIG RED button.


I was greeted by a clean-shaven man who painted his face with “hair” and moments later had a full beard. I waited a few minutes, looked around and pressed the red button AGAIN.


This time, two figures boxed it out with zero gravity. Pretty cool. So who’s behind the campaign?


Vitamin Water and their hashtag, #makeboringbrilliant. I like it, my quirky mind can go places with this. And this is only the Out of Home promotion. It goes much, much bigger. Vitamin Water enlisted Damien Dante Wayans and music artists B.o.B, Matt and Kim, Santigold and Yung Skeete to transform the town of “Boring, Oregon” into “Brilliant, Oregon”. You can catch the “Brilliance Uncapped” promo on Fuse.

How exactly do they make a boring waiting room brilliant? Well…see below.

This is a great example of Branded Entertainment that makes you want to participate! This fully-integrated campaign uses Out of Home, TV, Digital, Experiential Marketing and Social to tie it all together, and the branding is seamless. Check out their digital banner ads:


A ninja hand chopping crackers…this would make a great Vine video…ok, I’m on it!

VitaminWater, you made my DigiDay!




INeedSun.com: Simple URL is the Key

As a copywriter, you’re always trying to be witty or arrange words in a way that hasn’t been done before. With web writing and SEO, the brain juice sparks with a different approach: Be concise, be simple, get more traffic. With the average attention span lasting six seconds or less, your phrasing has to be memorable, not mind-blowing. The one, two power punch is bold imagery, bold tag. And even better if that bold tag ties into a bold URL that someone will recall later.

On a snow-flurried/mushy wintry mix/that will turn into brown slop later day like today, the sun-drenched image below attracted my naked eye like a beer cooler would at an AA meeting (not that I’ve been, but anyway, I digress).

My frozen hands fumbled with my iPhone to grab a photo. This image didn’t belong, not down in that dark, dirty tunnel.  And then the ad called out to me “And neither do you!”  Text “NEEDSUN” for a chance to win a trip. Um, yeah great, but I can’t text while I wait for the subway…Oh, there’s a URL, too: INeedSun.com. Think I’ll remember that? You bet. Because I really need sun! And because it’s simple.


What could me more concise and on point than — I NEED SUN DOT COM? The ad doesn’t tell you where that sun is — could be the DR, the Bahamas or Florida, but wherever it is, there are beaches, palm trees and turquoise water. Go to the URL and you’ll find out.

The unfortunate thing with URLs are the most simple are usually the most taken — or parked by GoDaddy.com. When they’re parked, you have to buy out the owner with an offer. And if they’re smart, they’ll hold out for a lot. This happens often. But it’s always worth a try…or play on words.

What I’ve learned with writing for the web — there is no need to be flowery or overly descriptive in your text. This isn’t a novel. This is quick, one hit advertising. And it’s effective.

INeedSun.com, you’ve made my Digiday!

Plastic Surgery for Ugly Dogs


In New York City, subway marketing is highly effective from an attention-grabbing perspective. On any given subway, it’s likely you’ll have at least one stranger’s armpit nearing dangerously close to your nose, a group of teenagers break dancing around the center pole and a homeless soul who has unfortunately crapped his pants and has cleared out one whole end of the car. So how do you divert your eyes? You may stare at the subway map you memorized when you were 13, scroll through your iPhone (which doesn’t get a signal underground) or look UP at the ads. Now, that’s a captive audience.

Dr. Armond, Canine Plastic Surgeon has bested the infamous Dr. Zizmor who for years has promised a zit-free complexion (by scaring us with Isabel R.’s mug). Zizmor is real. Dr. Armond is not. But from overhearing other subway riders, especially the tourists, they think he is. Some were appalled – “Who would make their dog get surgery? What is this country coming to?”. I bit my lip. Look a little closer, and you’ll see two entirely different breeds in the “Before” and “After”.

And even closer, to see cats need not apply and tail enhancement is also on the menu:

Screen Shot 2013-02-13 at 6.40.31 PMTail Enhancement

This is one of the best examples of OOH (Out of Home) advertising driving to web I’ve seen. Dr. Armond is actually actor-comedian-writer-producer Nick Kroll, whose sketch comedy, the Kroll Show makes its appearance on Comedy Central. The driving URL, PuppyLift.com opens to video clips from his latest episode. Smart marketing to drive awareness and viewership. The show is hilarious if you appreciate low-brow humor (I do). Well done Comedy Central, you made my digi day! I guess my pooch Cosimo can’t get that tail enhancement after all…

Thanks Nick Kroll, your show has made my Digi Day!