From Time: Mad Men’s much-anticipated closing song wasn’t a gritty track by an artist who served as an icon for the sex, drugs and rock-and-roll generation — but a jingle. It might not have had the adrenaline-pumping impact of The Sopranos’ “Don’t Stop Believin’,” but it made perfect sense for the end of a story about Don Draper — a guy to whom it was once said, “If you had to choose a place to die, it would be in the middle of a pitch.”
Mad Men finale and Coke: An interview with the real life ad man who created Coca-Cola’s “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” campaign.
From Slate: On last night’s Mad Men finale, an epic Don Draper brainstorm produced one of the most legendary commercials of the 20th century, in which a group of multicultural young people sing “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” on a grassy hill. But the real-life ad man who came up with the Coca-Cola concept is now retired and in his late 80s: Bill Backer, formerly the creative director of McCann. In January of 1971, Backer was en route to London to meet up with the music director for the Coca-Cola account when a dense fog grounded him in Ireland. The airport was full of irritable, stranded travelers. But when Backer wandered into an airport café, as he tells it, he was amazed to see some of the crankiest passengers, from all around the globe, laughing and bonding over bottles of Coke. Thus the idea for “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” was born. So how does Backer feel about having his legacy borrowed by Don Draper? He spoke to Slate by phone from his farm in Virginia.
From Mashable: Despite all the drinking and debauchery that goes on inside the office, the creative minds on Mad Men have managed to churn out some pretty neat ads over seven seasons.
No matter the product — cigarettes, lingerie, food — Don and his team whipped up smart, valuable ideas to numerous companies. There were memorable taglines (“Utz are better than nuts!”) and bitter fights over creative ideas.
From MediaPost: Don Draper, a copywriter and creative director whose ideas were some of the most thought-provoking and talked-about of the decades between the Sixties and Nineties, died Tuesday at his son’s home in Hudson, N.Y. He was 88.
Your product or service is either relevant or it’s worthless: Three things you need to do to make sure it’s relevant
From ChangeThis: Every day, according to best estimates, your customers and the people you would like to be your customers, are bombarded with more than 5,000 messages. There are advertisements—commercials, billboards, pop ups; calls from telemarketers; emails from deposed princes who need your help banking their fortunes; companies promising to enhance this or that; signs on buses and cabs; branding on clothing and in stores… you get the idea.
No wonder it is becoming harder and harder to break through the clutter. In an environment where literally thousands of messages are competing for attention, how do you get people to pay attention to your business, message, or offering?
Simply put: by being relevant.
From Fast Company: As Mad Men Season 7 approaches, its creator reflects on the loneliness of social media, the power of drama on a small scale, and the timeless themes of identity that unite Draper and Co. and all of us.
From NY Times: As competition in the United States transcontinental aviation market heats up, American Airlines is running a new advertising campaign highlighting its decades of service on these routes.
From Fast Company: It was a big year for content marketing, desserts and videos that made you cry.
From FastCompany: AKQA’s Rei Inamoto argues that the thing we call advertising is over and offers four guidelines for moving into the next era, when 365-day connection, people-focused stories, and business invention will be key.
From FastCompany: For decades, companies have made you feel inadequate in order to get you to buy things. In an excerpt from his new book Story Wars Jonah Sachs traces the history of the growing field of marketing products in ways that make us better people and the world a better place.
From Creativity Online: Andy Hertzfeld, one of the original members of the design/engineering team that created the Macintosh, recently posted this Apple ad footage on his Google+ account that never made it to air. According to his post, the spot was created by Chiat/Day in the fall of 1983, before the debut of the now iconic “1984” spot. He says the ad never made it on air “because Apple deemed it too self-congratulatory,” but the footage was included in promo materials that were sent to dealers. Hertzfeld is currently a software engineer at Google.
From FastCompany: Find out which brands have already ascended the podium in the advertising events at London 2012.
From NY Times: Blue Man Group shows off its New York origins in a campaign that encompasses everyday city settings with a blue, bald twist.
From Taschen Books: Gleaned from thousands of images, this companion set of books offers the best of American print advertising in the age of the “Big Idea.” At the height of American consumerism magazines were flooded with clever campaigns selling everything from girdles to guns. These optimistic indicators paint a fascinating picture of the colorful capitalism that dominated the spirit of the 1950s and 60s, as concerns about the Cold War gave way to the carefree booze-and-cigarettes Mad Men era. Also included is a wide range of significant advertising campaigns from both eras, giving insight into the zeitgeist of the period. Bursting with fresh, crisp colors, these ads have been digitally mastered to look as bright and new as the day they first hit newsstands.