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Bad Taste or Good Advertising?

skittles

If you are familiar with Skittles, then you are probably familiar with their long-running line of edgy and absurd commercials.

Skittles has been pushing boundaries and possibly taste levels with their commercials ironically featuring the tagline “Taste the Rainbow” for almost a decade. While kids and adults alike consume Skittles, their commercials employ weird and abstract humor some adults might struggle to understand.

The commercials go back as far as 2008 with odd classics such as piñata man in “Chocolate the Rainbow” (http://bit.ly/2qs3AHB) and the miserable man with the Skittles touch in “Touch the Rainbow” (http://bit.ly/1E3K9I7). Skittles continued to evolve in bizarreness when they released a series of sensory commercials that included the YouTube viral hit “Lick the Rainbow” (http://bit.ly/1o82I40).

While Skittles commercials may have left people scratching their heads over the years, it’s hard to argue with their success at garnering an audience just based on their online presence alone. Skittles has continued to grab the attention of consumers with recent gems “Trap the Rainbow” (http://bit.ly/2qsJJIZ) and “Settle the Rainbow” (http://bit.ly/2qS8xLt), but it is their latest commercial that has many people asking, “Have they gone too far?”

Just this past Mother’s Day weekend, Skittles released the commercial “Cut the Rainbow” and I must warn you that it is disturbing. The ad features a mother and grown son connected by an umbilical cord enjoying Skittles together. The question remains, is the most recent Skittles commercial still considered good advertising due to its effective attention grabbing and having gone viral or is it just in bad taste? For those of you brave enough, you can watch the video here – http://bit.ly/2pnufq5.

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United Airlines and Their PR Facepalm

United Airlines and Their PR Facepalm

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last month, you’ve no doubt seen the uproar caused by an incident where a United Airlines passenger was forcibly removed from a flight just prior to takeoff. The situation led to international backlash, countless jokes and Internet memes at United’s expense.

To make matters even worse, United CEO Oscar Munoz released an initial statement that was criticized by many as tone-deaf and insensitive. It also contained one of the most infamous made-up words of all time, stating his regret when United Airlines had to ‘re-accommodate’ their customer.

As with most high profile PR blunders, the blowback from the United Airlines incident wasn’t so much about the removal of the passenger itself, but the company’s seemingly apathetic response. Munoz eventually changed his tune, however, and apologized for the situation, labeling it as a “mistake of epic proportions.”

Eventually public outcry will die down and the event will be remembered as an embarrassing blemish in the company’s history. However, for the time being, ‘United Airlines’ is just about synonymous with ‘root canal’ or ‘telemarketer.’ Here are a few other well-known PR goofs that might make the folks at United feel a little bit better about their jobs.

Phillip Morris touts the financial benefits of death from smoking

In 2001, tobacco giant Phillip Morris published the results of a study that outlined the positive financial impact of early deaths due to smoking. The study examined the economic benefits from smoking deaths in the Czech Republic – stating that smoking “resulted in a net gain of around $147 million, including saving between 943 million and 1.2 billion korunas (about $24 million-to-$30 million) in health-care, pension and public-housing costs due to the early deaths of smokers.” Not surprisingly, the company was grilled by media outlets around the world and eventually apologized.

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Shaun Kehoe
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Thursday, 11 May 2017 10:15
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Style guidz? Grammar rules in marketing and advertising and when to break them

Style guidz? Grammar rules in marketing and advertising and when to break them

“Eat More Chikin.” “Got Milk?” “Eat Fresh.”

English teachers and grammarians alike groan when they see these slogans, and fellow marketers like me give the brands a nod of approval for their cleverness. These ad campaigns are all grammatically incorrect but are memorable and appeal to their audience.

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Leverage Demographic and Socioeconomic Data to Make Sound Marketing Decisions

Leverage Demographic and Socioeconomic Data to Make Sound Marketing Decisions

Whether, researching the best area to place your marketing dollars or identifying the best location to open a new business, Census Business Builder Small Business Edition is a wonderful resource to quickly gather data on your market. And it is free. Census Business Builder, is a tool that leverages various demographic and socioeconomic data to help marketers make sound business decisions.

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Dove’s 2017 “Real Beauty Pledge”: A demonstration of social responsibility and effective storytelling

Dove’s 2017 “Real Beauty Pledge”: A demonstration of social responsibility and effective storytelling

Eleven years ago, Dove’s “Evolution” video went viral. The 60-second video illustrated how lighting, make-up and Photoshop completely transformed a model. It was compelling and eye-opening for consumers, yet did not sell a product. Instead, it supported Dove’s social mission and resulted in becoming one of the most shared and talked about videos of the year.

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What Exactly is Fake News?

What Exactly is Fake News?

The term ‘fake news’ has been thrown around quite a bit since the 2016 presidential election – so much so that it’s getting more and more difficult for people to distinguish what ‘fake news’ actually is.

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Feeling Fenced In?

Feeling Fenced In?

If you’re feeling fenced in, it’s probably because you are.

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So We Eliminated Staff Meetings. Now What?

So We Eliminated Staff Meetings.  Now What?

What company can survive without staff meetings?

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Shopping goes social & the right media mix

Shopping goes social & the right media mix

This is not an endorsement for Target or the Cartwheel app but an observation of exceptional marketing. 

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Is Anyone Tweeting

Is Anyone Tweeting

(besides the President?)

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Happy Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day!

Happy Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day!

What a great way to promote your product…

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What do Vagisil and a Big Mac Have in Common?

What do Vagisil and a Big Mac Have in Common?

Got your attention, huh?

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The Top 5 Reasons to Send Company Christmas Cards

The Top 5 Reasons to Send Company Christmas Cards

As we begin the post-holiday purge of everything Christmas-related in our office including stale cookies and underwatered poinsettia plants, it’s also time to toss out the holiday cards received from clients and vendors.  It doesn’t take long because the amount received seems to go down every year.

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On-Trend and On-Time.

On-Trend and On-Time.

Trying to find new ways to generate traffic to your website or engage your audience on social media?

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Ballot selfie, or Not to Ballot Selfie?

Ballot selfie, or Not to Ballot Selfie?

Ballot selfie, or not to ballot selfie: that is the question.

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It’s an app world, and I’m loving it.

It’s an app world, and I’m loving it.

In today’s world, mobile apps are no longer a trend but are undeniably a part of everyday life. Almost everyone, from children to the elderly, are avid app users.

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Are You Using the Right Social Media to Reach Your Audience?

Are You Using the Right Social Media to Reach Your Audience?

If I manage marketing for my organization, should we be on Twitter?...LinkedIn?...Facebook?...Instagram?

…and the list goes on…

The simple answer…

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We’re Up in the Cloud!

We’re Up in the Cloud!

There are members of our creative crew who are equally left and right brained.

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Periscope: A Day in the Life of...Well, Anyone!

Periscope: A Day in the Life of...Well, Anyone!

Have you ever wanted to get a perspective of the day to day life of your favorite celebrity? Maybe seeing the intricate workings of a large business is more your thing. Or maybe you just want to get away for a while and watch someone else’s daily activities or routine. Whatever your ideas may be, the live streaming app Periscope is ready to oblige you with a variety of different views and worlds.

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Are you being followed by Internet ads? You've been retargeted!

Are you being followed by Internet ads? You've been retargeted!

See if you can recall how many times this has happened to you: you’re aimlessly browsing Amazon or some other online store looking for a particular product, let’s say, a pair of shoes. You check prices, gather as much information as you can from various online vendors, but ultimately make the decision to not make the purchase.

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