|For Sentimental Reasons: Crazy-Mad-Sentiment at I-Com
By: Brian Keller
In a beautiful suite in Seville, Spain, we met M. L. Lee (International Chief Creative Officer/Global), Maurice “Mo” Howard (Angel Paste Director of Connection Planning Effectiveness and Productivity) and Sonny Barger (CEO of Rabid Badger, a tech company offering real-time sentiment analysis of television and radio commercials).
Rabid Badger uses technology rumored to have been developed in 1995 for Demi Moore as she pondered changing the ending to “The Scarlet Letter." After reviewing the results from this “in-utero” technology, Ms. Moore changed the ending to what we believe was universal applause. She did this by using real-time data to figure out that it would be more sentimental to have a happy “Scarlet Letter.” Ms. Moore said: "In truth, not very many people have read the book. The ultimate message of Hester Prynne would have been lost if we'd stayed with the original ending." She never mentioned the role of what was to become Rabid Badger.
The film garnered acclaim. The technology stayed buried. Recently, Sonny Barger figured that with some tweaks to the software he could figure out sentiment in TV and radio in real time and wrangle that data for the good of humanity and advertisers.
M. L. Lee: “Glad you’re here.”
Mo Howard: “The Marcus Bailey team’s done a great job with our family of Angel Paste (cradle to grave) products.”
M. L. Lee: “If you have gums and/or teeth, you’ll have an angel on your shoulder for life and maybe after.”
Mo Howard: “We want to judge the sentiment real time during the TV run. If the commercial doesn’t trend, if it doesn't hit an emotional chord within three minutes of airing, we stop the social media, pull the spot, and blame the agency."
Sonny Barger: “Sentiment isn’t something that should be left to people. We have to tell our audience what sentiment and emotion are."
M. L Lee: “Sonny, we’re going to run the spot, but first tell me what to expect.”
Mo Howard: “Tell us where we can up our sentiment.”
Sonny: “We can definitely up yours by providing sentiment analysis in real time and we can also give you all brand mentions inside news segments as well. Think about getting this information real time, especially during dependable news stories like earthquakes, typhoons, or the arrest of a professional athlete. You need to make sure you are "simpatico.” We can get you the data to empower you and we can mash your social and digital data together to help you understand what it means. Then you can “mold your sentiment to hit the right chords.” Let's roll the commercial and we can test our data platform immediately.”
M. L. Lee: “This is exciting.”
A young girl (age eight, of mixed race) on a black-and-white pony races across a field of white tulips while her parents (Father — Asian/American/African American/Jewish, and Mother — Latin American/Caucasian American/Buddhist) smile as the tiny, but expert, equestrian rides toward her “Grandma” (indiscriminate color, which Marcus Bailey calls “pickem”). Music is "What a Wonderful World" sampled by Pharrell Williams and Kanye West and arranged by DJ Skrillex. At refrain, the girl jumps off pony and runs to Grandma saying, “Grandma, I got a great check-up at the dentist!” (she pronounces it Din-Test, due to adorable lack of a front tooth).
Grandma says: “That’s great, Josie! Now there are three generations of Feldman’s with Angel Paste white smiles. Angel Paste.”
She turns (parents walk up) to camera and says: “If you have gums and or teeth, you’ll have an angel on your shoulder. Angel Paste.”
All laugh as the little girl says: “Gee, Mommy, Daddy, Grammy, we should give Angel Paste to Cupcake.” Pony whinnies and reveals a few less-than-white teeth. Cut to close-up of family’s teeth, cut to wide shot and Kim Kardashian walking through background.
Sonny Barger: “Brilliant. This isn’t live so we can’t do a real test, but we can judge sentiment with our algorithm and we have a little bit of a shortfall on sentiment.”
Mo Howard: “There’s a lack of sentiment. What a mess. I mean, who the hell likes little girls and ponies? I said from the start it should have been a unicorn."
M. L. Lee: “Let’s figure this out.”
Sonny Barger: "Relax. That's why you called Rabid Badger. We make a little tweak. Just remove Granny and have the kid ride to her grave on the family farm and deliver her line to the sky. We place Granny’s close-up in the sky as if she’s watching. And leave her last line in as if it’s coming from heaven — Angel Paste.”
Mo Howard: “Brilliant. Granny's an angel.”
M. L. Lee: “Sonny, I’m tearing up. This is raw."
Sonny Barger: “And we can manipulate the data as well.”
In the name of advertising, we track people online, rig offers as people walk into a store, gather huge amounts of data to help craft messages, and now this. Our parody took liberties with the real story.
At I-Com in Seville, Spain brands Johnson & Johnson, Coke, Kellogg’s, and others gathered to “take a look" at real-time sentiment. Pepsi is already a client. There were also lots of other things there that may make one think or maybe scream.
The Best of I-Com
"We learn a lot of good things during the day, and then we get drunk together at night and tell each other things about our businesses that we shouldn't." –Chose to remain anonymous. Too bad, as truth-telling should be rewarded.
The title: Director of Connection Planning Effectiveness and Productivity.
Brian is the Creative Director at teeny agency in Baltimore. He graduated from the University of Maryland (English),went to grad school at NYU (Cinema Studies), & attends University of Baltimore School of Law.
Brian's been working, primarily, in the digital space for years but enjoys all communications avenues.
He has built the creative departments at two agencies.
He likes skateboarding with his son. He also falls off his skateboard and amuses his son.When not amusing his son or riding bikes or playing basketball or working he writes for Beyond Madison Avenue & that's why Beyond Madison Avenue appears twice in this sentence.
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