J's Page

Originally established for times when I needed more than 140 characters to finish a thought on marketing or media.

Text messaging turns 19: A timeline from Tatango

Tatango, a Seattle-based SMS marketing company, has put together a nifty timeline that looks at key moments in the history of text messaging. Of particular note: texting’s role in American Idol season 2 in 2003 and lewd texts that Brett Favre admitted sending to reporter Jenn Sterger.


History of Text Messaging Timeline
Source: Tatango SMS Marketing

1 Comment

From YouTube: Facebook Nervous Breakdown

I did return to Facebook after deactivating my  account.

I do have more to write about logging off the site; however, I don’t have time right now because I need to ‘like’ some things on Facebook.

Right now, I want to share something I found on YouTube via Facebook: the Facebook Nervous Breakdown by tmusic406. At the time of this writing, the video had 194 views.



EARLIER: How Lady Gaga helped me get off Facebook


YOU NEED TO KNOW: Mashable on Facebook’s auto-sharing feature



Toyota Venza girl does an ad for McRib

This post reflects my interest in advertising as a marketing student. The opinions expressed here are mine and in no way reflect the opinions of my employers.

UPDATE 8-12-12:Toyota Venza girl is angry about Triscuits.


UPDATE 11-03-2011: Like the ad?
Show Allyn Rachel the love on her Facebook page.


* * * * * * * *

I think I’m going to change the name of this blog to the Allyn Rachel & Other Stuff Blog. She’s all you people want to read about this year!

J’s Pages commenter Sarahbelle tipped me off that the “Toyota Venza girl” is also featured in the new commercial for the McRib, another bewildering food marketing success.

The McRib ad is a clever bid for mobile users, much like the new eBay ads. In the McRib spot, newlyweds Rachel and a Steve Zahn lookalike are about to embark on their honeymoon when he gets a text that the McRib is back! (“I’m gonna miss it!”)


I married a 14-year-old!


~ Allyn Rachel,
as McRib Bride

The ad does a great job of showing that all the characters have obeyed McDonald’s call-to-action for mobile users: “Get the word out: McRib is back!”

And it’s worth noting the spot fails to answer the question: What the hell is a McRib?

At the time of this writing, this HD version had 379 views, the SD version 2,546. There were 8 likes, 1 dislikes and 7 comments.

* * * * * * * *

See more of Allyn Rachel’s work on YouTube, Twitter, this blog and other Web 2.0 outlets.

UPDATE 10-27-2011: Allyn Rachel on Twitter


EARLIER:Toyota Venza Girl on MSN


EARLIER: Toyota Venza Girl on Yahoo!


EARLIER: More on the girl in Toyota Venza commercial


EVEN EARLIER: Toyota Venza: ‘That’s not a real puppy’



One month off Facebook

It has been a month since I deactivated my Facebook account.

When I sat down to write this, I really believed I’d have more to say about it, and then I realized that I risk repeating what I wrote in my last post about logging off. However, I do have at least one observation to share.

But first I want to make clear that when I deactivated my account, I didn’t do it to because I think I’m too cool for Facebook; I did it to find some lost time because I am too easily distracted by — well, everything. Facebook was a crippling diversion for me at home. Away from work, every minute is precious to me. There aren’t enough hours in the day. I needed to eliminate distractions that ate up my free time. Thirty days later, I have found that time, but I’ve also found myself in a weird social space: People assume I know something simply because it was posted on Facebook.

“You didn’t read that? I linked it on my Facebook page.”

“Ohmigod! Funniest picture ever! Go see it on my Facebook page.”

“Did you see on Facebook that Joe changed his relationship status to single?”

Um, no. Why don’t you tell me about it?

My husband asked me recently if I miss it. The answer is still no, but I do miss people – just not Facebook and its creepy “sharing” initiative, although I do want to test drive the Timeline and the Gestures, just for my own edification, to see what all the fuss is about.

Maybe in November. Maybe never.

NEW: How to leave Facebook: A beginner’s guide


EARLIER: How Lady Gaga helped me get off Facebook


YOU NEED TO KNOW: Mashable on Facebook’s auto-sharing feature



No Facebook: Week 3

Did I log off Facebook too soon?

I was asking myself that last week when Facebook’s most recent redesign sparked an outcry among users. I wanted to see what the fuss was about. I’ve missed the “huge” changes, all the rage, all my friends’ comments about how they feel about it. I got an eyeful of brief opinions on Twitter, but not enough to overdose. (I can log off Twitter more easily than I could Facebook.) Now folks are saying they’ll quit Facebook, but social media watchers are saying no, they won’t.

But I had already quit Facebook. Was it time to go back?


Although I want to see how the brand pages might look and how marketers would respond to the changes, I’m enjoying my time from Facebook. Right after I logged off, I noticed my life seemed quieter; it was something I couldn’t explain. Then my friend Terry pointed out that social media carries an obligation: If we’re logged on, we are expected required to respond. On Facebook, I felt I was required to respond to everything, no matter how large or small. After I quit Facebook, I felt like something had been deleted from my daily to-do list. I realized what I was feeling was relief.

That’s not to say there aren’t some things I miss about being on Facebook: I miss keeping up with my niece who just started high school. I miss keeping up with my best friend from college. I miss seeing what people are saying about Allstate’s Mayhem commercials.

But I don’t miss spending 16% of my online time looking at strangers’ Lady Gaga photos. And after reading about the creepy Timeline and auto-sharing features, I miss Facebook even less.

I still can’t say whether I’ll stay gone from Facebook forever. Deactivating my account was an experiment to eliminate some distractions. I told my friends I would be gone just for a little while, and then I set an end date for Nov. 1. But I’m not sure I’ll log on after that. I’m finding that there is life outside of Facebook, and I like it.

EARLIER: How Lady Gaga helped me get off Facebook


YOU NEED TO KNOW: Mashable on Facebook’s auto-sharing feature


Amazon’s new Fire heats up tablet race

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) unveiled the Kindle Fire on Wednesday, a 7-inch tablet that The Wall Street Journal says could be Apple’s “biggest” challenger to the almighty iPad.  Kindle, Kindle Touch 3G and Kindle Fire; courtesy of Amazon Press RoomMuch like iPad’s Android competitors, the Kindle Fire’s price is sure to compel consumers to give it a second look: It’s priced at an attractive $199; the cheapest iPad2 is $499.

The Kindle Fire was just part of Amazon’s growing Kindle family: Also announced were a lighter, cheaper Kindle ($79), the Kindle Touch ($99) and the Kindle Touch 3G ($149). Read the full news release about the Kindle family here.

The Amazon Kindle Fire at a glance:

  • Weight: 14.6 ounces (413 grams)
  • Size: 7.5″ x 4.7″ x 0.45″ (190 mm x 120 mm x 11.4 mm)
  • 1024 x 600P resolution at 169PPI
  • 8GB on-board memory
  • Battery Life: Up to 8 hours of reading or 7.5 hours of video playback, with wireless off.
  • Full charge in approx. 4 hours
  • Free cloud storage for all Amazon content
  • Audio: 3.5 mm stereo audio jack, top-mounted stereo speakers
  • Wi-Fi: 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, or 802.1X standard
  • USB 2.0 port (micro-B connector)
  • Warranty and service: 1 year limited
  • Supported formats: Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively, Audible (Audible Enhanced (AA, AAX)), DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, non-DRM AAC, MP3, MIDI, OGG, WAV, MP4, VP8

EARLIER: Acer Iconia A500: A honey-sweet alternative to iPad? ~J’s Pages, May 26

EARLIER: A honey-sweet alternative to the Xoom? ~ J’s Pages, April 9

1 Comment

eBay polishes its new act in ‘Salon’ commercial

ED’S NOTE: The commentary here reflects my interest in advertising as a marketing student. No products, services or agencies are endorsed. The opinions expressed here are mine and in no way reflect the opinions of my employers.

Not long after I wrote about the Toyota Venza Girl in the eBay “Blue Jeans” commercial, I caught another ad from the “When it’s on your mind, it’s on eBay” campaign. Even after I write about an advertising strategy, I like to find commercials “in the wild.” I have a very short attention span, and if a TV ad catches my attention as I’m studying/doing laundry/cleaning/blogging while half-watching a show I recorded, that tells me other people are likely to be noticing, too.
(Post continues after video.)


She was here once. She had toes like a sloth.


~ Snarky pedicurist on tabloid celebrity in eBay commercial

This time, we the consumer get to eavesdrop on 20somethings as they get their weekly mani/pedis in “Salon,” a 30-second spot with an ADHD-inspired script that shows how quickly we can fall in love with those “amazing shoes” we see in US Weekly or Talentless Bimbos Daily or whatever rag we’re force-fed while strapped to a chair at a salon. Our heroine — the targeted “shopping enthusiast” — uses her eBay app to find “this heel” that is “so fabulous!” (“Mine! Look at that!”) She was fast with the swipe, and no sooner had we found out Maui’s mom built a yacht lake house for her pug, our mobile shopper had purchased what was on her mind: the amazing shoes she saw just seconds ago in the tabloid.

For readers who didn’t catch the last post, the “When it’s on your mind, it’s on eBay” campaign” is designed to expand the ecommerce giant’s footprint in mobile commerce, a daunting task for a company seen primarily as an auction marketplace. With the “Buy It New. Buy It Now” call to action, eBay (NASDAQ: EBAY) urges shoppers to take advantage of the 62% of 200 million live listings that are “fixed price,” and the 70% of those products that are new. (Like the new jeans that actress Allyn Rachel orders in the “Blue Jeans” commercial.)

According to the press release announcing the campaign, eBay is targeting the “shopping enthusiasts,” the category of shopper who are most likely to shop using mobile devices. The first step in reaching those shoppers is through legacy media: Six 30-second TV commercials began airing Sept. 14 on national cable network shows including Top GearSportsCenter,Tosh.0The Daily Show with Jon StewartTop Chef and The Rachel Zoe Project — about the time Googlers started hitting this site looking for more information about the actress in the “Blue Jeans” ad.

At the time of this writing, this “Salon” clip (uploaded Sept. 13, 2011, on YouTube) had 12,336 views, 39 likes and 36 dislikes. A fan’s comments tipped me off to the name of the woman playing the “shopping enthusiast.” She is Kestrin Pantera, an actress, producer and voice-over artist who has a band and studies at the Groundlings. You can read more about her on IMDB.

About the eBay YouTube Channel
(As of Sept. 26, 2011)

  • Channel Views: 185,968
  • Total Upload Views: 1,724,434
  • Joined: Oct. 30, 2005
  • Subscribers: 1,272

AGENCY: Venables Bell & Partners, the folks who convinced us that Slim Jims are “mantastic!”

* * * * * * * * *


EARLIER: Toyota Venza Girl in eBay ‘Blue Jeans’ ad


EVEN EARLIER: Toyota Venza: ‘That’s not a real puppy’