Branding

Hyundai (Brand Vision) from Trizz Studio

Back in the early 1990’s I attended a lecture on automotive advertising that made a comparison to the way cars are, or were advertised in Japan at the time versus the United States. In Japan, it was less about the car and more about the mood or feeling. Here in America, little has changed. Most car ads talk about how fast you can go, how much you can haul, will this vehicle help you compensate for something missing in your life, etc. It was and still is an interesting comparison as to how different cultures perceive product relationships and branding. For example the video below, not for a Japanese car, but for Korean Hyundai. The video is an abstraction on relating to the automobile Hyundai’s design sensibilities. It is a short film that combines natural senses and emotions with visual abstractions that relate to what the product stands for; confidence, essentials, refinement, sensuality, effortlessness. It conveys all of this without ever showing a single Hyundai car, and not revealing the brand until the very end of the clip.

The video is an abstraction on relating to the automobile Hyundai’s design sensibilities. It is a short film that combines natural senses and emotions with visual abstractions that relate to what the product stands for; confidence, essentials, refinement, sensuality, effortlessness. It conveys all of this without ever showing a single Hyundai car, and not revealing the brand until the very end of the clip.  What a completely different approach to branding, and one that is the polar opposite of the way automotive branding and advertising is handled here in the good old US of A.

Produced by Trizz Studio for Innocean Worlwide and Hyundai, this is a fantastic blend of CG work, live action footage, and sound design. High production value, and the opportunity to create an abstract representation of what the Hyundai brand represents helps to sell this piece. I think it is wonderful, and frankly would like to see more car ads like this, but I know for a fact no agency in America is ever going to pitch this kind of concept to an automotive client, let alone have an automotive client actually buy in, here in America.

WAtch it full screen and turn up the volume.

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A little Friday Inspiration.

Most of my Friday morning has been spent looking at video clips trying to find inspiration for an animated video wall that will be playing in an upcoming trade show. While perusing the Vimeo I came across this series of videos from NERDO for the rebrand of La Effe. Theses have such a great look to them. Simple graphics, reduced color pallet, nice use of typography, great timing, and presence. The Graphic Pack shows the application of the look across a broad spectrum of uses, while the indents showcase a tighter venue for the animation. Yes I am seriously considering borrowing some of this concept for my 60 second loops. If you want to know more about the work, there is a complete case study here.

A New Symbol For The South.

HatI’ve never lived in the South. I have cousins that live there and my brother moved to Alabama a few months back, and that is about as deep as my relationship to the southern United States gets. I know the south has a rich and diverse cultural heritage, and I know that the confederate flag is a symbol of controversy for many living there and not living there. It is a symbol that has long been divisive and polarizing, occasionally popping up in the news when there is a call to ban or abolish it from public use by a state or local government. So I can’t imagine the challenge of designing a new symbol for the south that would be inclusive, embrace the traditions and heritage of the region, and not spark arguments from those that believe the confederate flag is sacred.

Last year PRI and WNYC asked 70k ft to do just that, and they did. Below is the imagery that they created and some of the thinking that went into the redesign. The embedded links go to the South website and to the PRI site where the team discusses in detail the process, the thinking, and the reaction to the new symbol for the southern portion of the United States. It is an interesting read and listen if you have the time. I have mixed feelings about the end results. I like the new symbol better than the tired old confederate flag, but I’m not sure it will resonate with southerners. It’ll be interesting to see if this new symbol takes hold and develops traction in the future.

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Rosa Parks

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30 Brands Pronounced Correctly.

The infographic below is from the UK printing company Oomph that shows you the correct pronunciation of 30 famous brand names that most people get wrong. Everyone should read and memorize the correct way to pronounce these brands, so the next time you hear someone say it wrong, you can correct them. Because everyone wants to be corrected by a stranger. Especially when that stranger is correcting you on how to pronounce brands like Givenchy, Louis Vuitton, and IKEA. The good news is I now know how to pronounce Miele, so when I go to Nebraska Furniture mart to buy a new dishwasher I won’t sound like a complete fool.

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Samsung Unpacks 36 Million Viral Views on YouTube.

The power of viral. The video below dropped less than a week ago on YouTube and it already has more than 36 million views. No it doesn’t use some magic formula, and no it wasn’t lucky. It went viral because it plays off of the genre of “unboxing” videos that are all over the internet, and because the production value of the video is rock solid. When combined with the Samsung brand, the nostalgia that surrounds some vintage tech, and the possibility that you might see some piece of unreleased gear, things get a bit nutty.

“From the release of the SH-100 mobile phone in 1988 to the first wristwatch phone. The World’s smallest TV phone to our first MP3 phone. We introduced the S Pen with the Galaxy Note series and paved the way for Phablets. We’ve even climbed mountains to make the first 3G call from Everest. Gone underwater to test the ability of the Galaxy S5 and curved glass to create the first dual edge screen smartphone.

Wherever there’s a barrier, we see it as an invitation to go further, together.

Who knows where progress will take us.”

Johnnie Walker. “Dear Brother”.

Not to be a downer during the holidays, but the video below while quite beautiful, does have a bit of a dark twist to it. The story however, rings true to what Johnnie Walker’s brand stands for.

The ad was produced as pure spec work by two students, Daniel Titz and Dorian Lebherz, who are currently studying at  Film Academy of Baden-Württemberg. What they have produced is a hauntingly beautiful piece of cinematography that captures the Scottish landscape while weaving a story that draws you in, building up to an unexpected finally.

This is the kind of work that just goes to show how much the game has changed in the last ten years. 2 students, with no real budget, and a small crew produced an epic spot for Johnnie Walker that rivals and or beats anything a big budget agency would have produced for an outrageous amount.

In the video you see two brothers walking across the foggy terrain of Scotland’s Isle of Skye, what feels like their childhood home. As the progress a poetic voiceover tells their story and connection. The script and the voice over lead you into the narrative as the two brothers climb over rocky hills and mountains to the destination of an abandoned farmhouse. The product makes a brief appearance as the two have a drink before continuing to the edge os a cliff and the dramatic conclusion. The spot is memorable, and ties directly into the bonding that happens with family over a drink, at the outcome of a stressful event. Powerful stuff. Great work.

This dropped on YouTube 3 days ago. It already has more than 2 million views, and with good reason.

Actors: Robin Guiver, Mathew Lewis-Carter
Voice Actor: John “Bang” Reilly

Idea: Daniel Titz & Dorian Lebherz
Director: Dorian Lebherz & Daniel Titz
Producer: Madlen Folk & Johann Valentinitsch
DoP: Jan David Günther
Editor: Raquel Caro Nunez
Visual Effects/Compositing: Daniel Titz & Dorian Lebherz
Film Music: Renée Andre Abe
Sound Design: Marvin H. Keil

CARE

Just under a week ago, Paris was rocked for the second time in less than year by senseless terrorist attacks. Over the last 6 days the news has been filled with more information about the attacks, and the possibility of more. In times like these it is often hard to imagine how much good is going on in the world, but occasionally we get reminded of it. Today I was looking around for visual inspiration for a new project I am starting when I came across this animated short by Hue&Cry for CARE. The animation is fantastic, the script and narration filled with hope, as it tells the story of how CARE started and evolved over the last 70 years.

It’s always tough to tell a brand’s story. It’s even tougher when the story spans 70 years of evolution and progress. But the toughest part about telling this story was truly honoring one of the oldest and greatest humanitarian foundations on the globe.’Power of a Box’ touches on the history, the evolution and the sheer scope of the work that the CARE Foundation has been delivering since the first half of last century, an effort that has improved the lives of a billion people in 90 countries around the world.

Then we took it another step. The core message and visuals of ’Power of a Box’ have been translated to an additional :30 and :15, as well as print, digital and social medias to create a new campaign for CARE. Our hope is that an organization that was at one point the ‘go to’ for humanitarian contribution will again become a house hold name that people know and trust, and we look forward to continuing to push their message and help them deliver lasting change.

Written and Directed by Hue&Cry
Original Music and Sound Design by Antfood
Narrated by Matt Dillon