Just in time for the holidays, nonprofit organization Shop for Good has gifted the Internet with a Kevin Bacon Commercial Generator, which puts the actor front and center in ads for small businesses.
The ad generator, created by New York agency Walrus, looks like a rudimentary ’90s website and asks for a business name and description, then collects a list of its top four products and services. Once users enter all that information, the program generates an easily sharable, low-rent ad in which Kevin Bacon hawks the company’s goods and services.
The ad generator was created to encourage small businesses to sign up for Shop for Good, which partners with local businesses to allow shoppers to donate a portion of their purchase to the school or charity of their choosing. Deacon Webster, co-founder and chief creative officer of Walrus, says that the retro 1990s look of the Kevin Bacon Commercial Generator was meant to mimic the feel of low-budget local commercials.
“It’s supposed to feel locally done,” says Webster. “We didn’t want it to be too slick. It’s kind of a tongue-in-cheek take on how local advertising looks. This generator kind of looks like your nephew who knows how to build websites threw the thing together.”
Webster says that the site is also meant to appeal to a growing nostalgia for the early days of the Web, where flashing animgifs and scrolling text were all the rage. “Every generation kind of has a nostalgia for their childhood,” he says.
“Now, people who grew up in the ’90s are sort of out there in the world missing the old junky internet and responding to things that harken back to it.”
Any user can make a Kevin Bacon ad, but the site cautions against using the generator for “Internet miscreant or other nefarious” purposes, warning that if users make a commercial without signing up for Shop for Good, “Kevin Bacon will be disappointed in you.”
Programmatic is taking over the digital advertising world, and at an even faster rate than expected, according to eMarketer, which raised its forecast for programmatic ad spending in the U.S. on the back of growth in mobile and video programmatic buys.
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