Snow White and the Huntsman Spoof

What happens when you give a creative agency power to create? A full on themed play of a Snow White and the Huntsman spoof to be debuted at our Holiday Party, of course. Check out the invite we sent out to the company, showcasing the parts that people were selected for; buzz marketing is even possible within your own company! This was a video I edited – try to forgive the others on their focusing ability.┬á


Just another reason to love working with a San Diego creative communications agency ­čÖé


The Power of Public Relations for Small Business

How many times have you relayed on something you heard someone else say in a previous conversation, later only to hear that same person pass on what you just said? This is called the third-party effect, and is one of the largest tools of influence people can use.

Welcome to the world of public relations.

Using public relations benefits two-fold for small businesses: it is a cheaper means of promotion than advertising, and it has more justification for the end-user because of the third-party effect. I worked on a consulting job recently for a local small business owner with a small budget; he didn’t have money for a graphic designer and ad placement, so I recommended doing a bit of PR to get his name out. After only a few sent emails, he had a placement in a local newspaper. ┬áThis was about one quarter of the cost to him than if he would have bought ad space in that same paper.

Small businesses need to use public relations as a primary means of promotion when on a budget. Think of how often we are bombarded with advertisements daily; It takes a very well made advertisement to catch our attention anymore, and small businesses do not have the budget to compete with the larger competitors. Take Facebook for instance: you can buy ad space and get 100,000 impressions, but how many people actually pay attention to Facebook ads? I know I don’t, and neither do any of my friends – one of the most sought after age target markets.

I have worked in public relations for almost two years, and can surely say that it is the most cost effective means for getting out your message. PR is cheaper, more effective, and easier to catch the attention and make a lasting impression of your end-users. One of the largest differences for me as well is it is generally more fun; it sometimes involves events that can benefit a variety of things, including community or charity organizations. I once hosted an event that gave back to the American Lung Association, promoting clean air around San Diego. This event was great because not only did we get to do something fun and worthwhile for the community, but it also served as a promotion tool by landing media coverage, boosting our public image while getting free recognition.

PR is a great tool and a wonderful asset to any company; hire someone to do PR for your business for just 30 days, you will be surprised at how much publicity you will get for a fraction of the cost. Don’t even get me started guerrilla marketing, you might be here for days…

Cameras to Prosumers: How We Influence Professionals

A couple days ago, my school hosted an event with producer and University of San Diego alum, Tim Lynch. He talked about his journey from being a USD student and not knowing what to do after graduation, to now being the founder of Woodshed Films. I always find it extremely fascinating to hear about peoples success stories and how they found their way into their current industry. Wanting to get into the video side of advertising myself, it was motivating to hear about his successes and failures about getting into the industry.

One thing I found interesting about his keynote how he said that the individual with a camera, not another agency, is one of his biggest competitors. When shooting commercials for Ford, the client is constantly comparing his work to works on Vimeo or YouTube. He said that on multiple occasions, clients will call or send video, telling him to “make your commercial look like this.” This shows the power of the prosumer, that we have influence on the mainstream and can create grassroots level creativity.

Another thing I found interesting that Tim mentioned was his love for 16mm film. I have only worked on a 16mm shoot once, and while it was a fun experience, it is obviously much easier to shoot digital for multiple reasons. The part that I find interesting though is how, while digital quality gets better and better, people still hold to the old methods. Take for instance, Instagram; we take beautiful pictures with our 8MP iPhone camera, then crop them down and add 1969 Kodak filters to it. Same with Hypstamatic, using filters that degrade the quality of our photos. While I am all about original content, I find it interesting that our technology is getting so good, that we tone it down to create more unique looking photos.

What Creates an Effective Advertisement?

What creates an effective advertisement? This is a question that is asked over and over in my advertising classes. A liberal arts education is different in terms that we don’t just study advertising in practicum, but also in theory. When you break into the theory of advertising, you being to look at different aspects of an ad, to the point where it feels as if you’re in a hybrid communication/psychology/sociology course.

When studying the effectiveness of an advertisement, the professor will put it on the board and ask us to discuss it. I would say that 9 times out of 10, I have studied these specific advertisements multiple times and have read about them on several blogs. A few weeks ago, we studied the United Colors of Benetton death row inmates campaign. After a 20 minute class discussion, the professor asked if this ad was effective, I raised my hand and said yes, that if we just spent 20 minutes in a professional setting discussing this ad, then it was effective.

Advertisers should look at their ads beyond simply generating sales, they should incorporate the idea of public relations into their advertisements as well. I heard a few weeks back from an industry professional that through the years, public relations professionals and advertisers will merge closer and closer together. This is an effective strategy that the industry needs to take into account, the idea that advertisements themselves can generate buzz beyond traditional methods.

Guerilla marketing has been a huge fascination of mine, and would love to work at a firm that solely focused on it. This style of marketing “gets it” in terms of buzz marketing into advertisements. Advertisers need to look outside the scope of sales and numbers and look at their advertisements from a public relations point of view; this view could lead to a breakthrough and to the future of advertising.