the frequency a kenny chung blog

March 28th, 2013
according to

The following notes are from the presentation titled “For Good Measure: Brand Measurement in a Digital World” at SES NY from Wednesday, March 27, 2013.

Note that these are just my notes, and I am not necessarily endorsing any strategies, tactics or POVs stated therein.

I would be remiss if I didn’t blog about Super Bowl XLIV commercials. I thought last year’s showing was pretty weak (a sign of companies cutting back ad spending), but this year was far worse. There were few that made me laugh out loud, think about something poignant, or really feel any connection to a brand or product.

That is, until Google debuted this wonderful ad titled “Parisian Love”:

Watching it made my jaw drop. It was moving, impressively simple, and 100% Google. It positioned Google as a product anyone at any stage of their life will find useful. It clearly conveyed the point that everybody needs to be using Google. All of the search engine’s many features (translations, maps, directory listings, web definitions, etc.) were seamlessly integrated into the storyline. But it was also simple. It was almost exclusively words typed onto a screen. Anybody with a video editing program could’ve created it from their bedroom.

So why did Google decide to purchase a Super Bowl spot? Maybe the execs felt that Yahoo and Microsoft becoming bedfellows pose a serious threat to Google’s search engine market share. Or maybe it was to combat Apple, who also touts simplicity and usability with all its products, especially the iPhone. But then again, Google has also burst onto the mobile handset scene with its Android operating system. However, this will be a discussion for another time.

Throughout the night, I updated my twitter @kennySHARKchung with my thoughts regarding each commercial break. I decided to create a bracket system that got a little messy; I refined it with some minor changes, and you can see how I decided on my favorite ad by clicking the thumbnail below:

Do you agree or disagree? Leave a comment.

I’ll do a more in-depth analysis of the Super Bowl spots and other honorable mentions.

Update: Turns out Google didn’t even create that ad specifically for the Super Bowl. It’s been available online for 3 months. Somehow I find that more impressive. Sounds like they have ultimate faith in their creative (not to mention the input of the public).

November 4th, 2009
according to

It seems you can’t turn on the TV these days (or Hulu or whatever transmission method you prefer) without seeing a “maps” commercial by Verizon. The short of it is that Verizon claims to have 5x more 3G coverage than AT&T. Brilliant ad campaign. And if they did their homework correctly, there’d be no way for AT&T to rebut.

However, AT&T found a solution: they’re just going to sue Verizon. Not about the claim, because they’re not arguing that it’s false. They’re suing because they claim that the Verizon ad is misleading.

Wait, what?

Yes, AT&T thinks that Verizon is implying that people without 3G coverage can’t receive phone calls or surf the web at all. Oh, did I mention that this is even after Verizon had fine print that clearly stated that phone and internet service are still available in areas without 3G on the AT&T network?

So why did AT&T do this? My guess would be they felt the shot to their pride. Verizon hit them where it hurt and there was no way AT&T could retalliate. I’m not saying AT&T should have taken their ball and went home, but they could have handled this much better than with a flimsy lawsuit. As of right now, I can see this turning into a PR nightmare.

Consider the following:

-AT&T filed the lawsuit not because Verizon’s claim of 500% more 3G coverage was false. People who read about the suit may correctly infer that AT&T concedes victory on that point.

-Others may read between the lines and feel that AT&T doesn’t believe in their own marketing/advertising department to come up with a rebuttal. Or maybe they don’t even have faith in their network.

-And let’s face it. This lawsuit makes AT&T seem like a kid who wants to play dodgeball but then complains when he/she gets hit.

Note: I should have prefaced this post by saying that I have been an AT&T customer for about 6 years (through the whole Cingular phase).

That whole Balloon Boy saga was a huge blow to the credibility of news organizations everywhere. It really showed that nobody was above covering sensationalistic news. Perhaps, at a deeper level, it also explained why the Internet has eclipsed traditional media as the news channel of choice for so many people.

I don’t dislike traditional news as an industry. It’s strange to be part of the generation that gets to witness the transition of what was once nontraditional into the new norm. And to watch the aging dinosaurs buckle at the knees, one by one. Things like the Balloon Boy hoax showed how easy it was to exploit traditional media and how desperate those outlets were to break a story that people care about.

And that is why I totally support the criminal charges brought against Balloon Boy’s parents. The advent of the 24 hours news cycle has done wonders to undermine the integrity of TV news. Hopefully, with lessons learned from this hoax, the industry will regain some shred of dignity. If it’s not too late, that is.

But really, who would have thought that parents who named their kid Falcon could be desperate for attention?