“I’m your favorite campaign.”

My opinion, the best advertising of 2010 is the “Mayhem” campaign for Allstate. Yes, I once worked at Leo Burnett but that just makes me happier and prouder making this choice. Besides, I like to think of myself as an early adapter to this campaign. Back in June I applauded the introduction of “Mayhem” even when others didn’t.

The others were wrong. Actor Dean Winters and his “Mayhem” character have already ensconced themselves into popular culture. And unlike other popular advertising characters (Can you say ‘Flo’ from Progressive?), Mayhem is smartly written and deftly produced. Some eight or ten spots later, not only does the campaign have legs but the work is getting better and better. Have you seen the holiday commercial? It’s hysterical.

I know there have been more famous marketing creations in 2010. Early on, Old Spice and Nike knocked campaigns out of the park. But those brands moved on. Mayhem, on the other hand, keeps on wreaking havoc, making it a big, enduring idea. The others, however brilliant, were one-offs. A solo homerun, no matter how far it’s hit, is still a one-point affair. (Granted, advertisers like Nike and Old Spice have demonstrated they are very capable of hitting numerous solo homeruns! As of this writing AOR for both brands, Wieden & Kennedy was deservedly selected agency of the year by Adweek.)

My one quibble: no Mayhem on Allstate’s website. Nor could I find any digital work highlighting Mayhem. But maybe that’s not such a bad thing. After all, Mayhem is what prompts us to buy insurance not where we go to buy it. Still, if the campaign wants to become the penultimate case study they’re going to want/need some digital credentials.


Rock on, America!

Happy Fourth of July! Our nation is 234 years old. Shit, that’s hardly anything. But for us it’s everything.

Especially for us in Ad Land, given our industry has such a direct correlation with the freedoms we hold dear. Used to anyway. Remember the old saw about being able to watch all the shows you want for free because of advertising? Now you can watch most of them for free without advertising. Thank you Hulu and You Tube.

Ah well, it was fun while it lasted.

My next post will be a follow-up to my last, where a great many of you commented on Leo Burnett’s brash, new campaign for Allstate. Seems a few of you feel the work, while excellent, is entirely too derivative of another insurance company’s campaign. We’ll look at that as well as explore the idea of ‘no new ideas’ in the Internet age.

Until then, I’m heading north, with a trunk full of quasi-legal fireworks so, in the words of Apu (from the Simpson’s), I can “celebrate the birth of our country by blowing a small portion of it up.”

God bless you and God bless America.

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