Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Which is best?

Successful response rates between various advertising mediums (traditional & new) are still as whole, logistically, unquantifiable. This nice piece courtesy of Entrepreneur.com addresses a basic question. How can you know which of your approaches is earning the best ROI? After a 7 year study and the work up of a 2,500 page book only 3 factors were understood...



Monday, September 29, 2008


There's a Tea House about 2 buildings down from our office. This particular Tea House is currently hosting work by an extremely talented photographer: Lilian Critchlow.

All the photos she's showing at the Tea House are taken of famous musicians while she lived in Europe. Needless to say, they're all amazing and very inspiring, hence the title of this post.

Well, it just so happened that I saw Lilian's show the day of my friend's concert. So, they were my inspiration for this shoot.

Inspiringlee done,

Sweet moves

If this past weekend taught me anything, it was how to execute an effective triangle choke (see above) against an assailant. It is pretty amazing how you can manipulate your opponents with simple twists and turns of the torso and limbs.

I am going to keep this move in mind the next time that jerk next door let's his dogs bark at 4am. Ill be like... "hey, jerk, you wanna feel the wrath of my triangle?" and he'll be all... "no way buddy I'm not messing with that."

On a side note, our own Lee Stonehouse pulls similar maneuvers on bullies and jerks nearly every day (he gets picked on a lot). It's pretty sweet stuff - I am hoping he can show me some more of these sweet moves so I can add to my arsenal of one cool trick.


If you happen to be following this...

We have a small debate circling the crooked porch these days. The question is whether or not CP+B's new attempts at selling the Windows os are effective or not. We all agreed that the Seinfeld spots were simply ridiculous, vague in concept and void of all call to action for selling an actual product. But are the new "i'm a pc" ads delivering to their potential? Only time will tell, but for now here is a bit of commentary on this topic. What are your thoughts?

"And so what makes Microsoft's new "I'm a PC" commercials so jaw-droppingly bad is that they're not countering Apple's message, but instead they're reinforcing it."



Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Advertising Industry, Sustainability and the Bottom Line

Here is a great article courtesy the environmentalleader.com that discusses the current evolution of outdoor advertising mediums and their advance towards responsible environmental practices. Through the development of new eco-friendly materials (one by way of a Colorado company!) and implementation of greener policies, we as advertisers can look to the future of outdoor with the exictement in knowing that these choices are out there.



Miles McIlhargie


My mind has been blown.

As some of you may (or may not) know, Canon had been teasing us with a profile shot of their upcoming camera on their website for some time. Well, last week they unveiled their new BEAST of a camera.

Not only does this camera have an amazing sensor, it can also shoot up to 12 minutes of 16:9 HD video on a 4 gigabyte memory card. "That's all well and good" you say, "but I can by a mini HD video camera for much cheaper." Indeed you can ladies and gentlemen, but can you film the video using any lens you already own for your camera (in this case canon lenses)? Nay I say to you, you canonot.

If I still haven't convinced you, I suggest you click on the picture below to view a video taken by the new Canon 5D Mark II (using assorted lenses).

Camera "nerd out" brought to you by Lee Stonehouse

...if you didn't click that picture above, I am very dissapointed in you.

Monday, September 22, 2008

8 tips for marketing during a downturn.

It's a natural instinct; revenue drops, you cut spending. And for many, one of the first line items that comes under scrutiny is the marketing budget; after-all, marketing is an intangible, unnecessary expenditure right? Wrong. As the old saying goes, better it is to increase your presence in times of recession than the opposite.

Some of the greatest brands have flourished and grown during recessions. Look at Ivory soap during the great depression, Intel in the early nineties slow down and Wal-Mart during the post .com era.

In these tight times, marketing yourself when others are not will not only bring your original customer base calling, but can also attract customers of the competition; and when the overall economy picks back up you are poised to secure a larger market share than ever before.

This tight economy forces greater creativity and more ingenious ways of stretching budgets; think cost-effective online advertising opportunities. Flexibility is key. Here at Handcrafted Media we pride ourselves on this ability to adapt and offer unique solutions to continue promoting your brand.

Here is a great article courtesy of Harvard Business Publishing that presents a list of helpful tips and ideas when it comes to marketing in tough times...


Thoughts by Miles McIlhargie


Fact: As much as I'm looking forward to snowboarding this winter, I will miss summer.

If you live in Colorado (at least along a majority of the Eastern side of the rockies), you know that come evening, the clouds come rollin' in. It usually happens for at least a few weeks. Anyway, what also happens are some amazing photo opportunities.

This picture in particular was a 3 shot pano. stitched together in Photoshop.

"Sunshine, sunshine, it's fine
I feel it in my skin, warming up my mind,
Sometimes you gotta give in to win,
I love the days when it shines, whoa let it shine"

Lee out.

If only it was this simple...

Because voting should be like recess!

Courtesy of ABC.

When good concept meets poor execution.

Don't buy this soap-

It happens more than it should in our industry, a good initial idea that goes completely awry somewhere in the creative process. Who thought it was a good choice to translate a cute cuddly critter into something you would, eat? Seriously, out of all the choices out there...


[via Copyranter at Coilhouse, who has another ad featuring a cat that cat lovers might not enjoy]

Monday, September 15, 2008


My younger brother is an amazing fighter. If you know me, by now you probably already know this. Nonetheless, it's a true statement and I'm really proud of him... so I say it every chance I get.

This weekend I finally got the chance to take some lighting equipment up to his gym and get some shots for his personal use (as well as for his sponsor to use). Not only that, but it really helped me some to understand lighting somewhat better.

I think (and hope), that overall, the weekend was a success.

If you'd like to see more shots you can click on the image above.


Watch the video first...

It's easy to overlook things when you're attention is focused elsewhere. So many of us easily miss what is going on around us on a daily basis - it is easy to do in today's age of constant information and junk delivered by various mediums. We are being programmed to weed out the unnecessary and get to what we feel is the heart of the matter. For a large part this is a useful tool but at the same time this sort of tunnel vision can limit our ability to see things that surround us; things that may be beneficial or even harmful.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Not Just Marketing

I needed to fly from LAX to Seattle early last Saturday and was delighted to see that Virgin America was a choice. I consider Virgin to be one of the best marketed companies and was interested in seeing how they marketed a commodity like air travel.

Well, from the flowers on the check-in desk to the very pleasant staff... to the amazing in seat entertainment system that remembered what I was listening to and allowed me to order coffee and a snack from the touch screen in front of me, I discovered that VA was more than marketing, they completely redesigned the flying experience.

Just walking on to the plane changed my expectations... walking off the plane confirmed them.

A lot of times we, as marketers, get asked to do things that "convey" a change that really isn't there.  It is very refreshing that Virgin America didn't just try to tell people they were different, they became different.  

We know how great it is to work with clients like this.  In our own world we are proud of clients like Avondale Toyota (A totally transparent transaction at a car dealership) and Payden & Rygel (an independent investment company not trying to pump up their stock price to please investors or peddle funds not controlled by them) who really ARE different.  

Clients like these are why we like to come to work.



Monday, September 8, 2008

110 MPG.

Here is one solution to the still overwhelming price of gas. Well, the mpg's are a plus, but I really bought this scooter because it is just so much frickin' fun to drive! We're loving our new Buddy 50; I highly recommend procuring one for yourself.

Get creative

I stumbled! upon this the other day and thought it deserved a nod on the old blog. Many times it is the fundamental elements of identity collateral that are overlooked and given less attention than deserved. The old fashioned business card is a staple of of brand communication; so getting creative with this piece many times assists in the opening of new and exciting doors. Whether you're a creative shop or not, the possibilities of creating an unforgettable first impression is limited only by the imagination*.

*Here at Handcrafted we're chock full of this stuff.


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Copy Goes Here

One of the greatest advertising/design industry related short films ever, imo. Brought to our blog courtesy of Coudal Partners. Take a few minutes to watch this enlightening little piece, it's totally worth it. You don't have to be in the creative business to 'get it', but it helps. Enjoy...