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Have you heard about the new global ad campaign of Mercedes-Benz? I guess the person who approved this banner hasn’t.

It is on the right side of this video saying ‘Grand Prix Edition – for the fastest ones’. Quick animation so you may see it 3-4 times if you watch it until the end.


Over the past couple of years I have noticed that the first two months of the year are not that quiet than it was before. Advertisers wakes up faster agencies work with tighter deadlines in this period.

In February two companies released their augmented reality activation. Samsung designed this microsite for 3d visualization of notebooks. I personally find it very self-centered or rather autotelic but no doubt that it is truly an experience.

The other one is a global activation that has – Thank God! – it’s Hungarian leg too. These days if you visit a Benetton store, you got a nice postcard that has the code on it’s back. It’s pretty bad that the microsite is not localized (only English) but the text on the card is in Hungarian. Accordingly, as Hungarian special characters are not proper on the card I guess the card was localized centrally too. Though, why I really like this activation is that it goes beyond the product level. Check it out!

I hope these activations will be successful so advertisers may be more open to innovative channels that bring more fun into our (their consumers) life.

Let’s make it clear: I find it very entertaining on Facebook (Hungarian), when it comes to duplications in inflection, wrong word order or mixed Hunglish sentences. That’s part of the game. We wanted our Hungarian version of Facebook, even myself have 15 winning phrases. We have been creating it for ourselves.


An example for a Facebook application English and Hungarian mix:




But I’m afraid brand communication is different. A brand that has properties like: professional, one of the best quality available, innovative, etc. cannot allow negligence in communication that may harm the brand. Unless…

Unless what? Unless the company wants to associate a human insight to the brand. Accordingly, this is what Nike is doing with the new campaign. Building running communities by giving them a platform for racing. By this occurrence, once they integrate the campaign into community channels and use those resources well, language lameness would be part of the game. However, Nike is doing it on its own microsite, really by the reason of saving budget. They just don’t want to bother with small markets. So their lameness is a real one, a part of a bad quality web development that is not in harmony with Nike’s brand properties.


Nike’s branded Hunglish widget:














This kind of global way of thinking is against today’s marketing trends. I mean personal experiences with the brand. For me, as a Hungarian, it tells me that Nike doesn’t think my engagement is important for them.

I just shot this banner. So professional, I wanted to show it anyway.



1. The big size cursor is a perfect attention grabber.
2. The simple direction is also perfect (Use the cover!) as you can do it normally one way.
3. The education message is the following after the user action: By this action you can save the amount of energy of cooking a dinner. – ain’t it… perfect?

I hope the advertiser will create a series of these type of engaging banners. I would be glad to get engaged and learn simple tricks of saving energy.

This is an issue… and not an easy one. I mean it looks quite simple, but if you want to find whose fault is that, it’s not an easy thing.

Check this banner, and count how many animation loops you need to be able to read the message:



It took three times for me to get the message coming through. In 18 seconds – this is the length of the video – the animation runs 3 times which means that the animation length of the banner is 6 seconds.

The issue is serious because:

  • There are many very skilled flash designers who develops anything you want. The problem is that they rarely know anything about adservers or marketing – so without directions or supervision they may create a colorful, very beautiful and completely useless banner.
  • There is a difference between online accounts and classic ones. Former one might miss marketing background but may know better what clicktag or filesize conditions are, while a classic account are more agile to notice spelling grammars or – like in our case – that she cannot read the message.
  • My experience shows that advertisers still pay less attention on online creative executions if there is an integrated campaign. That’s because they have less online experiences plus many times online creatives are adaptions of the offline creative so it should not be a big deal.

Anyhow, if you feel lost, or are unsure, take an old hand’s advice. For this issue, I have one I inherited from an old stager: To check the length of the appearance of any texts in animations, read it loud with normal speed. If you can read it, that’ll do.

Banner combinations are tricky ones. Mainly because of positioning, the coordination with the media and of course, the adserver hosting. Especially if you combine different creative formats. Today my example is a simple one (no format combination) with a sloppy execution.


Focus on the prizes flying from the left skyscraper to leaderboard and to the right skycraper.


You buy banner combinations based on time. That’s because media cannot rotate it with another banner combination so you cannot buy it based on ad views.

The moment of the shot is 8:30pm which means it has been running all day like this. One of the most important positive feature of online advertising is that you can edit your campaign in adserver whenever you want and it will go live in up to 30 minutes (depending adserver you use).

Again, I saw the creatives of this campaign on almost all major portals. It’s so sad that the agency didn’t pay attention for the details. I am pretty sure when they presented the plans, the transition between the ad units was perfect (not talking about the layout, online the animation). And you know, for these things primarily the agency is in charge, then the media and at last the advertiser.

This is not the ideal world as Seth thought, but it still worths a look. Raiffeisen has a TV program for educating people about financial phrases and facts. Many times, captchas are hard to read, so the message of the ad is built on it:

Isn’t that clear? Discernment in finance is crucial. Watch the TV program by Raiffeisen Bank.

Nicely done by the Advertiser as the sponsorship is clickable and directs to a video published on the portal of a TV channel. Even though I don’t think the copy of the ad is strong enough, the idea and the execution is very well done!


You buy (or arrange anyhow) one of the most expensive media space available online. You reach in one day 1/3rd of all local internet users. You have a superbanner plus a triplebanner at once that can be seen without rolling. What do you do?



CV Online has placed the same creative into the superbanner and the triplebanner. C’mon! They could have had a banner combination, they could have linked the two banners to each other. Once you have such a chance, you better think it twice how you use it!

If you don’t know what is the current situation in Hungary, you may learn it from here or from here. But if you want to hear a Hungarian insider’s opinion, here you can have it:  There is an impotent government with a moron opposition and all they do is fighting with each other no matter what happens in the country and what people think about them.

Now the problem is that they let talented youngsters (the future of the country) to choose from two choices:
1. They either leave this whole thing and settle down in an other country where their neighbours are not frustrated by paying one of the highest taxes in Europe and get bad healthcare, lack of highways and low salaries in exchange… or
2. They try to find alternative ways to get the most out of their salaries… and I told you that Hungarians are creative. So they look for options not paying taxes or at least not all of them.

Some of them vote for the first opion and many of them the second. Both are bad for the government but the second is worse as government misses this high income and that is the easier way for people who don’t want to leave Hungary. So they worked out an action plan to change the behaviour of these people against paying taxes. The name of the action plan is ‘Új Magyarország’ which means ‘New Hungary’.

They created a website where they put on impressive figures about how much damages these unpaid taxes and affixes cause.

And they have a strong communication that says: ‘Tax Evasion. <with glamour animation> no matter how you gild it this is a fact. Est. yearly HUF 1400 bln is the loss. Fair play in playing taxes as well!’



But it seems they forget two things:
1. People who don’t pay taxes have done this for 10-15 years, and it has become a chic
2. Governments for 18 years has been managing badly this country’s economy and people have no trust that they can spend their money carefully.

This communication is really unilateral so it won’t work like this. Even though the meaning of the domain address: Let’s do it together.  

They expect that people should be loyal to their leaders while they do nothing more than before. Don’t take me wrong. I belive that this communication could be successful (at least I wanna believe it) but only if they show to people that they work with enthusiasm and want to get back people’s trust. They should place their daily schedule, video reports what they have done today for us and use all the channels that provides the opportunity to have a dialogue with people.

In the meantime, they hang on to their privileges like benefits without payoffs and taxes, messy rules in public procurements and central financial system, so this communication is illegitim and will have no positive effect. Just another waste of money. Our money.

This is a very interesting and complex theme. Try to be straight to the topic then.

Let’s see first, what is the most popular online entertainment activity (source: WIP 2007 Hungary):

Entertainment activities on the Internet

Guess you knew that anyway, but marketers need charts and diagrams to be able to make decisions so there you go. In the meantime offer legal and free (???) music online seems to be a success whatever you do over the communication. The art is to link your brand to it.

Now, we know that Coca-Cola and iTunes teamed up last year. What you don’t know is that iTunes is not available from Hungary (or at least limited usage). So Coca-Cola Hungary lost the opportunity to co-brand Coke with the trendy Apple brand. And the second thing is – as in my previous post I wrote for another field – that this market is way over-regulated so there is a huge unnecessary administrative cost for the Advertiser if they want to provide music legally.

Isn’t it great the Coca-Cola Hungary still made it with I really want to know how big budget they have. Their newest attraction is that they offer exclusive Rihanna content:

I found their ad on music portals so it seems that they use only thematic targeting. Well, they don’t risk too much. 🙂

Vodafone Live! is a successful project here in Hungary. In our country, the mobile internet market is not liberated so they are not really in a though situation. Your opening WAP page is either t-zones (T-Mobile), Pannon W@p (Telenor) or Vodafone Live! depending on which mobile provider connect you to your beloved ones. Today there was a big expandable VL display ad on the most popular news portal’s main page offering Madonna content:

It opens only when you click which is a pity (you lose clicks as visitors need to click once again to reach the landing page) it would be better by mouse-over but it is really impressive.

Why this communication is worth to mention is that is has a music link and secondly because mobile providers’ campaigns are usually focusing on their tariffs or newest devices. Even though we have here a Sony Ericsson screen and additional offer this campaign is an interesting one.

Anyhow, music seems to be a good choice to invest in.