Archives for clever advertising



The Bluths Are Everywhere

If you care even a little bit about the late lamented TV show Arrested Development (I do), then you probably know that Netflix has produced a new season of the show, due for release on May 26. In case you didn’t know, however, some clever folks at Netflix (or its ad agency/P.R. firm etc.) are covering all the bases: here’s a screenshot for a new New York restaurant I came across yesterday while ordering lunch from Seamless.com. Personally, I think the delivery minimum is a tad high: Read More »



FREAK Shots: That’s One Way to Reduce Sugar

Freakonomics reader Jerrod Savage sends in a couple images that seem to show a rather unwholesome advertising strategy. (Don Draper certainly wouldn’t ever pull something like this.) What happens when you reduce the size of a container of Nesquik chocolate syrup by 33 percent? You also reduce the sugar content by 33 percent, magically creating a healthy, low-sugar alternative! Read More »



One-Second Commercials

I remember as a kid growing up watching TV, every once in a while someone at the station would make a mistake and start the wrong commercial. It would run for a second or two, and then the person in charge would realize the mistake and immediately cut to some other commercial or to the actual show. Read More »



When Corporate Sponsorship Backfires

From the Wall Street Journal: “When British bank Barclays PLC agreed to shell out ?25 million ($39 million) to sponsor London’s new public bike-rental program, it envisioned the marketing benefits of seeing its sky-blue logo draped on thousands of cycles around the city.” Read More »



Quotes Uncovered: Well-Known Advertising Slogans

Two years ago, I asked for suggestions for the most memorable advertising slogans of recent years, to help with the next edition of The Yale Book of Quotations. Let me repeat my “bleg” from that time, and ask again for suggestions. Read More »



What's in a Name?

The determinants of one’s demand for a product are covered in every introductory economics course. Independent of prices, my income and my general preferences, I also consider the cuteness of the product’s name. Read More »



What Are the Limits of Unbranding?

Celebrity endorsements have been popular for a long time, but fashion experts are repotedly now practicing a new marketing strategy loosely known as “unbranding”: “Allegedly, the anxious folks at these various luxury houses are all aggressively gifting our gal Snookums with free bags. No surprise, right? But here’s the shocker: They are not sending her their own bags. They are sending her each other’s bags! Competitors’ bags!” Read More »



Author as Idiot

Gary Shteyngart promotes his new book. Read More »