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Ice Dew Commercial: Olympic Fail for Water-Deprived Mini-Athletes!

Olympic mini athlete in Ice Dew advertising ChinaWater advertising and sports…they’re still the perfect, hand-holding, snuggling couple at the promotion party!

This latest hookup involves the Olympics and Coca Cola’s Ice Dew (one of the leading bottled water brands in China) created by Bartle Bogle Hearty, Shanghai. The ad’s premise is that since humans are 60% water, Read more

Charmin circa 1952: A Flowery Sales Pitch

While plowing though some forgotten boxes of ephemera (that’s another story for another day) I came across this vintage newspaper advertisement.

Before Mr. Whipple there was this woman: Ms. Particular Chin-touching Centerpiece-Loving Bareshoulders, seen here with pageant “pretty feet,” pondering her bright flower-filled home as well as her hospital-pure potty paper. Hope Mr. Particular isn’t late for dinner again tonight! (Five years after this ad appeared, Charmin was acquired by Procter & Gamble.)

This product was always intended to attract women and their pin money. I learned here that the original Wisconsin-born Charmin was “described as ‘charming’ by an employee, and the Charmin brand name was born.” The flower-compatible product was “designed to look like feminine fashions of the day. Packaging was light blue and featured the silhouette of a woman’s head from a cameo pin, which became known as the “Charmin Lady.”

charmin bath tissue vintage advertisement

Party with the Petunias

I’m on vacation right now so I’m coasting instead of posting…but enjoy this entertaining psa from Denver Water from a couple summers ago!

Drunk Flowers: Denver Water by Ad Agency: Sukle Advertising & Design, Denver, USA, July 2008

Water in a Bag: Crazy Convenient!

What’s more ridiculous that water in a disposable bottle? How about ultra-convenient “Water in a Bag?”

A hysterical parody on breathless infomercials and pointless products, the Water in a Bag comedy sketch (from the long-running Canadian show This Hour Has 22 Minutes) serves up such gems as:

"Just grab the appropriate size bag, snip the corner, and away you go!"

Are you tired of unpredictable kitchen faucets? Sick of  the never-ending battle with measuring cups? Wish there was an easier way to get the water you need?
The people who brought you Salad in a Bag… Steamed Vegetables in a Bag… and Slow Cooker Meals in a Bag… bring you the ultimate in food preparation convenience: Water in a Bag!

Embedding is disabled, so to view the entire clip on YouTube, go here.

(Somber, serious moment: Water in a Bag is indeed a real and un-funny product in some parts of the world.)

Thanks to Environmental Reporter Christopher Dunagan; I first saw this on his  excellent Watching Our Water Ways blog (from the Kitsap Sun, serving the Puget Sound, Washington state area.)

Clueless American Football Brutes Chug Crystal Geyser

World Cup fever is everywhere, and excitement for this international marketing sports event is exploding… even in the USA where many don’t “get” the game itself or why it’s “erroneously” refered to as football. What a prime opportunity for non-US marketers to poke a little fun, as in this Hong Kong-produced ad for Crystal Geyser, “Wrong sport, right water.” (Notice the scoreboard: USA vs. Europe!? I think I missed that match!)

The Next Big Thing: Toilet Tank Billboards

You see just a plain toilet. A visionary entrepreneur, though, sees a new space available to make money with ads. The 15,000+ attendees at the PPAI* Expo in Las Vegas must have had their heads spinning with thoughts of a royal flush of untapped opportunity for these imprintable toilet tank covers…although it seems there’s something not quite right with the design concept, at least for women…hmmmm. Read more

The Value of Water, Explained by Two Grannies

Those witty folks at Yorkshire Water UK are at it again, with time with a kooky campaign centered on two thrifty Grannies. “Edna and Mary” urge us to “Look ‘ow much you get for your money!” and are backed by a spot on the telly, their own corner of “t’interweb,” and of course, Twitter and Facebook.

It’s a wide stream of slapstick silliness surrounding know-it-all Edna and disheveled Mary. But grounding it all is the fact that Grannies everywhere will definitely be paying a lot more for water in the future. It’s no joke that many people don’t comprehend the huge (and escalating) costs and complex infrastructure required to deliver the cheap, clean tap water we take for granted. From the video’s YouTube page,

Research has highlighted to us that nearly 40% of our customers don’t know what they get for their money when it comes to their water bill. It’s important to us that our customers understand what they get for their money so we’ve launched this latest campaign to explain where your money goes.

The website is loaded with campy jokes and stereotypical dialogue which sometimes goes a bit too far; despite this, the two frugal frumps are a gateway to a lot of valuble, concise information, like “How do we spend your money?” or “how we collect and treat your water.”

YouTube commenters have quickly piled on with the expected criticisms, mostly on the theme of you’re wasting the public’s money on this stupid campaign and advertising.

A mentor of mine once told me, “If you’re not being criticized, you’re not making progress.” He was right.

Embedded video below or view on YouTube here.

Grandeur in the Ocean Garbage Patch

This new awareness advert from Rise Above Plastics combines the ick factor of the ocean garbage patch with the majesty of a giant whale with predictably repugnant results. (From their website, we learn that “In some places of the Pacific Ocean, the amount of plastic suspended in the water outnumbers plankton six to one.”)


Two other items on the Rise Above Plastics website that make us say, “Hey, that’s neat!”…
Above, this rapidly escalating-counter shows, in our face and in real time, the runaway rubbish rate for plastic water bottles.
Below, the site alos includes this photo of plastic shopping bags masquerading as jellyfish, which reminds us of this “Dangerous Species” poster as well as the much-loved-by-me Ariston washer ad.

A Water Symphony Sings for Skoda

For all the irritation wrought by boorish, intrusive advertising, let’s remember: occasionally advertising offers us some rare, aesthetic delight that stops us in our tracks.

Such is the case with this ad for Czech auto manufacturer Škoda featuring experimental Czech musician Petr Spatina. He is seen playing 597 water-filled Schott Zwiesel crystal wine glasses… arranged in the shape of a car! You might assume that since this is a lowly advert there’s bound to be trickery or illusion involved. But there isn’t. The sweet melody is real and authentic.


See more at Petr Spatina’s website goodwatermusic.com.

Speaking the Universal Language of Cute

These spots from Nickelodeon Latin American are meant to teach kids “green” behaviors, but people of all ages can certainly delight in their irresistible cuteness. Sadly, I happen to know that people of all ages can learn a few tips from the not-so-elementary lessons!

Little green box-guy “Verdito” was created as a companion to “Cubit,” who’s the little orange box-guy mascot of Nick Latin America. I love these spots because they’re so simple, funny and appealing that we don’t notice any age, language or cultural barriers. Just the message. So listen up.


This spot promotes last October’s Global Handwashing Day: