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Profanity in Advertising — What the @#$! do we care?

Profanity in advertising—is it REALLY needed in order to stand out in the all the marketing clutter? Are we becoming immune to it? A recent article on Talentzoo puts it this way: …times change, and we’re slowly breaking down our cultural norms and resistance to expletives. Consider the following ads: For as long as I can […]

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Sexy Halloween costumes for kids: A scary reality

‘Tis the season again for hot cider, pumpkin patches, rainy soccer games, and sexy kid’s Halloween costumes. Say what? Yes, you know what we’re  talking about. Take a quick stroll through any costume store or gaze online, and you’ll be besieged with images of girls looking 20 years older than they are. Disturbing. Our own […]

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How one college builds trust by educating prospects

Consumers today are better informed about the products or services they’re purchasing than at any other time in history. But it’s not because of marketers. In addition to researching on Google, peer-to-peer review sites like Angie’s List and Yelp have quickly become the most effective way for consumers to learn about business products and services. […]

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Hey Abercrombie, take your apology and suck it.

Oh, Abercrombie. You continue to steal the headlines with your chiseled shirtless teenagers gracing the cover of your shopping bags, scandalous advertisements, and beautiful hand-selected employees. And thanks to Business Insider for bringing CEO Mike Jefferies’ 2006 comments back to life, Abercrombie is once again in our headlines. In case you missed it, in 2006 Jeffries made […]

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Dove Real Beauty Sketches: Responsible Marketing, I think.

If you haven’t already seen this “Dove Real Beauty Sketches” clip that everyone is posting on Facebook, take a gander: Dove once again pulls through in this touching video about how women view themselves in such poor light compared to how others see them. It is sad how women are especially critical of every mole, […]

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A-Rod and Kobe and Phelps, oh my!

It was a risk when Activision cast four of the world’s most recognized athletes to dance in their underwear for a video game that that wasn’t sports-related. Imagine it: The greatest Olympian of all time (at least by medal count), the best basketball and baseball player today, and the person that has almost single-handedly popularized […]

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On sweatshops, morality and marketing

Do you care if a pair of jeans you were about to buy was made with sweatshop labor? What if you looked really good in them—would you care then? Are you sure? In Sweatshop Labor is Wrong Unless the Jeans are Cute, Neeru Paharia and Rohit Deshpandé of Harvard Business School share the results of […]

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Bite-sized Friday: The Virgin Edition

No, this isn’t the first Bite-sized Friday—just the first one since October. Bite-sized Fridays are essentially mini-posts, thematically linked. And away we go: Virgin Atlantic 25th anniversary ad Virgin Atlantic’s 25th Anniversary ad, 25 Years, Still Red Hot has been getting a lot of attention lately, but positive and negative. Some think it’s sexist, others […]

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Responsible or not? Using the dead to sell

On Christmas Day, John Lennon returned from the dead. Well, his image and voice were resurrected to help the One Laptop Per Child Foundation “OLPCF” and it’s raised a few eyebrows (and hackles). If you haven’t heard about the OLPCF, here’s a summary: It’s an education project, not a laptop project. Inexpensive, durable, networked laptops […]

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“Sexy” tights for tweens on

I have no problem with the sale of sexy lingerie. It’s, well, sexy. But it’s a bit jarring to see a product on Amazon called Girls Spider Web Sexy Tights Hosiery Leg Wear from a risque lingerie company called PrettySinful next to the picture of the little girl, above. One Amazon customer reviewer sums it […]

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On Black Friday and consumerism

Today is Black Friday. You might have heard it’s the busiest shopping day of the year. It seldom is. The Saturday before Christmas is typically the busiest shopping day of the year. You might have also heard Black Friday is named as such because it’s the day that puts retailers in the black. That’s not […]

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Responsible or not? Shockvertising

Trendhunter did my homework for me today and compiled a four minute collection of shocking ads that will leave you asking the question, “How far is too far?” You won’t want to view this in front of small children or your boss. It features fake lesbians, phony murder scenes, employees getting punched in the face […]

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Is PETA’s use of nudity going too far?

Whether you support their cause or not, it’s impossible to ignore PETA. Their undercover investigations and campaigns are orchestrated across all media—advertising, PR, events, and social media are all a part of the mix—and most are integrated quite well. The way they get attention is always controversial, and they’ve taken on some of the titans […]

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Responsible or not? Advertising adultery

Ashley Madison is a social networking/dating service—for married people. Although the company isn’t breaking any laws by helping facilitate adultery (soon they’ll have a money back guarantee if you don’t successfully have an affair), they aren’t breaking any laws. Still, their billboard only lasted three days in Times Square, an ad they produced for ESPN […]

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