The Guardian asks, “Shouldn’t your run be this much fun?”

Just under two months ago the Guardian launched a new campaign for their Life & Style site. The camping focuses on running and is built around a series of images of dogs tied to the question “Shouldn’t your run be this much fun”. Visually this is a home run as far as I’m concerned  It’s hard for anyone to not stop and look at a photo of a dog that is completely happy beyond belief.

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Produced by BBH for the Guardian, the ads create a winning approach in a crowded market place by considering why we run in the first place rather than bombard readers with facts and figures. They also made a bold move by stepping away from pro-athlete endorsements or by claiming to be the authority on running. Instead they simply imply that running could make you this happy, and tie it to a well informed website that hosts a stream of running content with light social hooks for engagement.


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Not Everything Needs an App.

This is a great example of “Not everything needs a Smartphone app”. Mercedes has introduced “SL Bodywork – Your personalized Workout.” An iPhone and Android app that helps you work out while promoting the new body styling of the new Mercedes-Benz SL.

Hmmmmm. Really?

The application looks nice, and so does the car. The model in the the videos is attractive, but I just don’t get the point of this application. I keep looking at it and thinking to myself was this really a good use of marketing funds?

According to the copy on YouTube, you do get access to more content, the more you work out, and there are the typical hooks to social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook. The problem is, what does this application bring to the table, that other fitness applications don’t? What is the real compelling reason to use this application?

Aside from hardcore Mercedes fans, I don’t see much of real use for this app. It is simply a novelty marketing vehicle (pun intended) for Mercedes. This is the kind of thing that drives me nuts. Not everything needs to be a smartphone app. Not everything needs a Facebook, or Twitter presence. There is a certain “Grasping at straws” mentality that surrounds this kind of thing. I just keep thinking that this cost a lot of money to produce, and the ROI from the app is going to be minimal. Brands like Mercedes, or really any large brand, need to really think about this kind of thing before they produce it. Perhaps the money and effort would be better spent elsewhere.

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