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“How Life Unfolds” Paper and Packaging Leverages The Power of Storytelling.

Last night while suffering from a bout of insomnia I was watching TV trying to will myself to get sleepy so I could just go to bed and dream the night away. It wasn’t working and I’m glad it I stayed up. The fact that I was watching late night TV allowed me to see a commercial for Paper and Packaging that originally dropped back in April, which led me to the online campaign that it is tied to as well. And this got me to thinking about how really nice this campaign is.

In a day and age where no one really writes physical letters anymore, how does a company communicate the use of paper, of how personal handwritten communication is, and how touching a physical letter can be instead of an email or text? They do it through compelling storytelling. When I first saw the commercial below, the sound was off on my TV. I was actually working on my iPad and happened to look up and see it. I didn’t turn the sound on, instead I watched the entire spot in silence and was still drawn in by a storyline that simply works. The visuals are as equally compelling as the voice over. After watching the spot I backed up, turned on the sound and watched again, this time listening to the message, and thinking about how this spot hits a home run.

The commercial is relevant because it does a number of things. It unites multiple generations with the experience of writing an actual letter. It ties three generations together, one that grew up in a time where email and texts didn’t exist, one where these technologies emerged, and one where the primary form of communication is digital. In doing so, it humanizes what could be a forgettable experience, (a text, or an email) and replaces it with something that we all know is memorable, a hand written letter. Everyone everywhere knows the power of a correspondence written by hand. A letter takes time, require focus, and tends to feel more genuine. It isn’t something that is typed out on a phone, reduced to 140 characters, or lost in a digital inbox or folder that exists on the cloud out of sight out of mind.  The commercial also shows the products in use. Not just the piece of paper, remember this is for “Paper and Packaging”, a company that also produces cardboard boxes. The commercial shows the letters, written on paper, shipped in a box, and returned the same way, all while telling a great story about how the product is used as a form of communication and delivery.

After watching the spot a couple of more times, I no longer cared about willing myself to sleep. I was curious about the rest of the campaign, so I did a quick Google search and found that Paper and packaging had recently created a new series of YouTube videos entitled “Letters for Peace” on their channel “How Life Unfolds”, great tagline by the way. I have one of the 3-minute videos below, but I highly recommend clicking through and watching the remaining six. Every one of them is  done at the same high level of production and tells a wonderful story all coming back to the same basic component of the commercial “Letters to Dad” that I happened to look up and catch last night.

All of this is tied together through digital media of course. Let’s face it, they might be a paper company, but even they know you can’t escape from the digital realm, especially when it comes to advertising and marketing your products. There is an Instagram account that has a little over 400 posts and a few thousand followers. Followers are encouraged to celebrate how paper and packaging helps them accomplish their goals at home, at school, and in the workplace by posting images using the hashtag #howlifeunfolds. The website is an online archive of the letters of peace, and a place where comments are fed to the site and people are encouraged to like and share. In addition the site offers additional insight into the authors, invites people to submit their own letters, promotes the product line, and has feature articles on why you should write things by hand.

Great stuff from Cramer-Krasselt, Paper and Packaging’s agency of record.

IKEA -Relax its a meal not a competition.

I love this new spot from Ikea poking fun at all the Instagrammers obsessed with taking pictures of their food. The tag line at the end sums it up so well it’s not a competition, it’s a meal. When tied to the line Relax, they completely sell the concept behind IKEA kitchen design, and the companies approach to cooking and sharing a meal, sharing is about relaxed human interaction, not seeing how many people react to that photo of your meal out. Put down your phone and have a conversation people.

MNSTR, Lacoste, The Australian Open, and the Small Screen.

If you work with video, animation, or motion graphics for advertising, or promotional materials you should probably start thinking heavily about mobile outlets and how you will deliver content. Case in point, the video below from MNSTR for Lacoste and the Australian Open. This video showcases the work MNSTR created specifically for the small screen, and even more specifically for the short time frame, touch points like Instagram and Snapchat require. Simple, short, colorful animations paired with high quality sound design help to make these work. MNSTR did their homework and got their heads wrapped around the space these would presented in and pulled it off. This series of short animations were dribbled out over the two week event helping to extend the total reach of Lacoste’s efforts. 

Pantone Smoothies.

Because it’s Friday. Because it’s Pantone. Because these are smoothies.

Art director Hedvig A. Kushner of  Mother New York  makes a lot of smoothies. Hedvig also noticed it kinda works like mixing paint. You add a certain ingredient, you get a certain color. So Hedvig started a little project about making some tasty smoothies that match Pantone color chips. Pantone Smoothies

Kushner buys colored paper from a local art store, matches it to a Pantone swatch, and makes the smoothie to match whatever color the swatch is. Then along with photographer Mike Kushner each is photographed three times. One shot with the ingredients, the second with the resulting smoothie, then the matching Pantone swatch.

You can check out the project at pantonesmoothies.com, and you can submit your own on the site, or via Instagram.

 

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Land Rover on Instagram is API Genius.

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It’s pretty amazing how brands are beginning to take advantage of the Instagram API to create compelling advertising. Landrover has launched 2 Instagram campaigns that take full advantage of the smartphone applications ability to use video and seamless image blends to create a story built around the new Landcover discovery. Developed by Y&R New York, followers engage in two fictional stories. The first follows the adventures of two brothers in Kanab Utah. The second a young couple in Sawtooth National Forest Idaho. The campaign blends amazing landscape photography that has been stitched together to create a seamless, scrollable backdrop, and short video clips from each adventure. Both stories are viewable at @SolitudeInSawtooth, @BrotherhoodOfWonderstone on Instagram. At various points users can tap on specific images to learn skills in off-road driving, survival tips, and other outdoor techniques. This is such a great form of social advertising. It is engaging, without being a hard sell. It elevates the brand in a way that makes the Landcover Discovery even more desirable, and it engages with the target audience on a very transparent level. You really should look at this on your Instagram account if you can. The website version simply doesn’t do it justice. The video below from Digital Buzz shows it in action if you don’t want to, or have the time to check it out on your Instagram account.

 

The Instagram Ikea Catalog.

here is an interesting use of Instagram in terms of advertising without feeling quite so much like an ad or an online catalog.

Ikea Russia created  an “Instagram Catalog Website” for a 34 piece designer collection of products. The Instagram account used the tagging feature to promote items and encouraged followers to share images and videos of their own Ikea PS 2014 products using the same hash tags. The campaign snagged over 15,000 followers in less than a week. With the “Instagram Catalog Website” functioning much like a microsite, the cross linking feature allowed each product to build out it’s own Instagram microsite for each product. The social sharing users generate with their own photos tagged with the product’s Instagram name allowed the campaign to go viral.

Oh and the cost was marginal for Ikea Russia.

The Social Media Life Cycle.

The image below from the Social Media Center provides an insight into the process of converting content and conversations – via transactions – into recommendations. The graphic shows that the real power is found in earned media. With 92 percent of trust recommendations coming from friends and relatives. In addition to that 92 percent, another 70 percent of social media content viewers trust online reviews by other consumers according to Nielsen’s Global Trust in Advertising Report 2012. If you do anything with social media in the world of marketing and advertising, the image below is worth taking a look at.

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