A Canadian book blog: Publishing, marketing, books and technology from a Canadian perspective

AdHack: product and service reviews

Thursday, December 16, 2010


CBC is important to me. Please sign the petition to keep it around.



Sunday, October 03, 2010

Xoxolat: Junk-free Chocolate in Vancouver

Xoxolat (sho-sho-la) is open at 2391 Burrard Street (at 8th Ave) in Vancouver and I went in to check it out. Hodie is the owner and gave me a run-down of the store and each of the chocolate lines that she carries. The great thing about the store is that she carries single-origin chocolate bars from around the world (the packaging is amazing) as well as an extensive line of organic, Fair Trade chocolate and Equitable Trade chocolates. The chocolates are junk-free, in that there’s little or no emulsifiers or garbage found in most chocolate.

A great place for chocolate lovers and food geeks.


Machu Piccu Cafe truffle
Lavender dark chocolate bar
Bacon bar

No photos. Just deliciousness.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Cerruti 1881 Pour Homme Commercial

I like this perfume video ad with French actor and singer Marc Lavoine. It’s part of a campaign for Cerruti 1881 Pour Homme.

(Source: Thanks Now Smell This)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

AdHack: Show Us Your Balls

It’s down to the final 3 contestants in the “Show Us Your Balls” campaign.

And now we dance! Script by Ren

No Good Deed. Script by Jordan Behan

Beer Balls. Script by Ryan Kurr
Vote for the script that you think should win.

And watch the Balls Music Video. Oh it’s on baby.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Perfume: Love, Ralph Lauren


In San Francisco, I was in the Polo store and had a whiff of “Love,” Ralph Lauren’s perfume that launched in the fall to huge fanfare. The huge part was really the price tag, £2,000 a bottle.

Marketing Week UK did a profile on the launch expenses and the various aspects of the marketing campaign. In brief, it was a ballsy move to launch a premium perfume into an economic crisis, especially one aimed at 25-year-old women with high discretionary spending. Although what do 25 year olds know about economic crises anyway? Good market.

I left the Polo store with a sample of the Eau de Parfum. It’s lovely at first. Sparkly, then amber, with a slight floral smell. Initially I thought it was a chypre, there was something lovely and green, but it quickly announced itself as a floriental. Like most perfumes on me this one becomes quite powdery (1-2 hours later) then disappears (6 hours later). Love at first sight but it doesn’t stay the night.

The luxury limited edition has a 47-carat amethyst in the 24-karat gold painted cap, and it comes with a lucite stand. This is what you’re paying £2,000 for, not the juice, which they now sell in smaller quantities, in plain bottles for anywhere from $50-600 depending on bottle choice and quantity.

For the perfumers in the crowd:

Top: Chinese magnolia, mimosa
Heart: Bulgarian rose, ylang ylang, mai rose
Base: amber, iris root, patchouli, vetiver, musk, vanilla

There’s also chatter about the Goji berry, reminiscent of aged red wine, and vintage champagne sparkles with a cool green water accord. I guess the initial whiff of a chypre wasn’t a total miss on my part.

Love, Ralph Lauren is lovely but not a perfect scent for me.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Contest: Show Us Your Balls By Monday

The AdHack "Show Us Your Balls" Contest closes Monday, Feb 16, 11:59 pm PST.

* Watch the Video.
* Pick a Product/Service
* Finish the Story.

Looking for Inspiration?

Beverage Companies Are Favorite Advertisers Among Super Bowl Viewers:


According to comScore's pre-Super Bowl survey, respondents cited strong preference for beverage brands. In that light, here's AdHack's "Not What Happened" ending.

Watch the AdHack "Show Us Your Balls" Alternative Ending

Want to Share? Copy and Paste This Into Your Website:

(Source: PRWeb press release on AdHack: User-Generated Ads)

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Embed Your Balls

Link to video:

Embed code:

Copy and Paste This Into Your Website

Monday, February 02, 2009

Show Us Your Balls Super Bowl Commercial

Giant Ant Media and AdHack.com teamed up a couple of months ago to film their alternative to the Super Bowl commercial.

I can’t say the Super Bowl commercials were great this year, but I definitely had a good laugh at the AdHack “Show Us Your Balls” ad.

I loved it so much that I agreed to help promote it. Here’s my hefty press release talking about the secrets to making a great ad. and, for your viewing pleasure ...

Now that you know what the crazy avatars are all about, go check out AdHack’s Contest page where you can write the follow-up script for a chance to have your version filmed.

And those are my “balls balls” at the end of the commercial.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

So Miss Ballsy


Here’s Your Open Ball Invitation. A chance to frame your balls. A moment to reflect on what it truly means to have squeaky shoes.

AdHack.com is working on something really funny. They have me by the balls so I can’t tell you what it is. But you’ll be rolling around laughing when I do.

In the meantime, show us your balls. In the most polite sense, of course. Footballs, soccer balls, tennis balls.

STEP 1: Create an Avatar so you can prove you were cool before you even knew why this was cool.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Farmstead Wines

Farmstead Wines. Wine is grown, not made. Vina-groovy.

Farmstead Wines announced a photo contest recently and there are still prizes left.

Post a photo to Twitter, TwitPic, Flickr wearing your Farmstead button or drinking a bottle of Farmstead wine. Really, even if there are no prizes left, wear your button, drink the wine. It will change your life (or at least your opinion of good wine).

Vinaroon: Wine is grown, not made

Get the details.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

T Bakery

T Bakery. So delicious.

High Tea at T Bakery
4445 West 10th Ave.

Susie and I went for high tea at T Bakery today. Cream Earl Grey. Totally delicious bites.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Things We Like This Week

Bit of a lazy Friday round up of things on that caught my attention this week.

Print Liberation has a new book out: Print Liberation, the Screen Printing Primer. It has future publicists for the company shaking in their boots (kidding).

Penguin UK has launched a dating site, “where book lovers meet”.

Alan at the Penguin blog makes jokes about penguins dating. Definitely worth a read.

* Needled: A community that loves tattoos has a cool navigation style that really works with what the site is about.

* I got nice presents from Campaign Monitor.

* Social Actions has a cool widget for promoting social action.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

1 Month to Peace Day

POD: Peace One Day
September 21


Wednesday, August 06, 2008

2 Things, 2 Awesome People

First: Julie Wilson is awesome. Check out her blog Seen Reading. There’s a little SoMisguided banner there this month. And that’s not the only reason why she rocks. In addition to the Seen Reading posts (these are short stories of people Julie sees on her commute and an excerpt from the books they are reading), there are now audio clips.

Second: (Number 1 in my heart) is James Sherrett and AdHack Are you coming to the party on Friday?

AdHack Beta Launch Party!
Anza Club, kicking off at 7 pm with some true DIY spirit.

* 3 W. 8th Ave (at Ontario) Vancouver

Entry is free, just tell us if you’re coming.

Drink beer, gossip, talk about advertising and the better stuff you could make. It will be joyous. I will be drinking. Sometimes these things are related.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Why Microsoft Sucks

I’m sure there are many reasons but this is the one presenting itself to me today.

I have been sent an xml file created in Word. A file that really wants to open in Word despite my best efforts. The good news is that Microsoft Office recognizes that I’m on a Mac and there’s a converter that I can download and then I’ll be able to open the document. Do I want to do that?

Yes, I do.

I click the link to download the converter. But I come to a page where I find out I have to download the upgrade, install, then download the converter. Ok.

So I’m downloading the upgrade. This is all taking too much time. I’m having to read a lot of text to make sure I’m doing this correctly. The text suggest that I might want to print the page for future reference. That’s not promising.

Happily once clicking the download link, I get another page of instructions.

“In the File Download dialog box, do one of the following:”

Mmmm, that looks like important instructions? Ones that should be legible at all costs. Perhaps the most important text on the page. Here’s what I see.


Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like Microsoft should be better at this.