Tuesday, September 28, 2010

GSK Takes On Tobacco Companies

When it comes to smoking there are two truths. 1) People are always going to smoke. 2) People are always going to hate smoking. Of course, science is on the side of those who hate smoking. They have pushed it out of restaurants, workplaces, and even some public spaces.

For the smokers out there, the tobacco companies have developed alternative, smokeless products for their customers to get their nicotine fix. Up to a few years ago, those alternatives were less than glamorous, dip and chew. Today we have tobacco lozenges, like the Camel Orbs seen above.

As the WSJ points out today, GSK wants these off the shelf and for good reason.

Critics call them tobacco candy for kids. GlaxoSmithKline, makers of Nicorette, view it exactly as a cheaper alternative to their smoking cessation products. A box of brand name Nicorette can run around $40 and Orbs are the price of a pack of cigarettes. The thrifty and uninformed consumer who is eager to quit smoking could easily say, “Why buy the gum, when I could get this for so much less?”

Despite the fact that I am not the biggest fan of drug companies, I do believe that they are in the right on this one. Maybe the tobacco companies would have been better off saying that these were designed to lure in kids; that way they could openly deal with a familiar opponent.

Monday, September 27, 2010


This weekend my football viewing was tainted by the debut of the Nike “Boom” ad, which features none other than Tim Tebow watching a Manny Pacquiao fight with Ndamukong Suh – a player I actually like – at a tailor.

I understand the appeal of Tebow to all the religious zealots out there. After all, nearly every single athlete attributes his success to the big man upstairs, but Tebow lives it. At least, that’s what they all tell me.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

David Pogue Destroys the Vulkano

I really have nothing to add to this video. I think he hits it right on the head.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New Addition To The List of Things I want

If George Lucas could stop ruining his old movies and start doing more synergy marketing like this to fill his coiffeurs, then I would be totally cool with him.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A bunch of short thoughts

Because I’ve been way too busy to write this blog and stay up on the trades, here’s a bunch of thoughts on a few things that have crossed my radar since my last post.

Android Is Now The Leading Smartphone OS

1) Does this mean that Google will stop paying carriers to use Android over other software?
2) This pretty much makes Google the Microsoft of smartphones. Congratulations! Or, congratulations?
3) This is fine and dandy but the reality is that even here in the States, smartphones make up about 25% of the market with the expectation to beat feature phones by Q3 of next year. But, that’s being very optimistic. Will your grandmother really want one? Feature phones can easily cross the digital divide, but smartphone adoption among quasi-luddites is another story.

No Matter How Friendly They Make Ray Lewis Look I Am Still Scared of Him

The McGarryBowen Verizon Campaign Is A Non-Starter

First of all, when I heard that the new campaign was going to be called “Rule the Air” I instantly thought that the account which McGarry was going to take Verizon’s move over AT&T and empower their customers. Well, they went way too soft. And, by soft I mean inspirational soft.
My biggest problem with the campaign is the ad below. Being able to complete a conversation over a cell phone is not a reason to feel like we have reached gender equality. Plus, this is coming from a company that lists 16 senior executives and officers on their website with only two of them being women. I think the air at Verizon headquarters has not caught up to the air in their ads.

McGarry and Verizon should have stuck to making consumers feel good about switching to their service like they have with this lovely spot that came out after the launch.