Archive for November, 2013

Gap Responds to Racist Graffiti on #MakeLove Ad

Friday, November 29th, 2013

Gap launched its holiday “#makelove” campaign, but no love was given from some…

The campaign, featuring a variety of diverse models, proved we are not yet in a post-racist society.  This past Sunday, Nov. 24th, the senior editor of the Islamic Monthly and founder of, Arsalan Iftikhar, posted a photo on his Twitter sharing the racism that exists today.  The photo was of a vandalized Gap subway ad which featured Sikh actor and jewelry designer Waris Ahluwalia.  The image showed “Love” crossed out, changing it to “Make Bombs” and below a message to “stop driving taxis.”

Gap’s response?  They tweeted back, asking for the location of the ad and changed their twitter image to the image of Ahluwalia.  Iftikhar shared the swift response and some from the Sikh community have begun a “Thank you, Gap” campaign, grateful for the exposure their community has received from this campaign which they would not have been able to achieve themselves.

This is a great example of a company listening and acting swiftly.  Twitter, along with other social channels, can be such a strong tool when used correctly, and Gap handled this right.  We applaud Gap’s campaign and hope they keep up the great work!

Patagonia Marketing – Crazy or Genius?

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

If you happen to follow the brand Patagonia or have been paying any bit of attention to the business news headlines in the past month, you’re aware their brand is causing quite the shake-up. Patagonia is daring to be different in the retail world – where high-end apparel reigns and the consumer mindset of wanting the “newest” and “best” products is practically universal.

Just last month Patagonia placed an essay smack-dab in the middle of their fall catalog, rich with arguments from the company’s founder, Yvon Chouinard, encouraging readers to “consume less.” His essay invites customers to join Patagonia in its effort to explore ways to reduce consumption and become a more “responsible economy.” The company is already taking action – placing disclaimers on their e-commerce site like, “Don’t buy this shirt unless you need it,” and also participating in Black Friday – encouraging customers to bring in their old clothing to be repaired instead of purchasing new.

Some may be questioning “why now?”, but this effort isn’t a complete 180º from the company’s core philosophy. In 2005 Patagonia started the “Common Threads Initiative,” which pushed customers to take a pledge to only buy products they need and reuse what they have. Chouinard wrote another essay back in 2004 saying, “We want to make the best clothes and make them so they will last a long, long time. Our idea is to make the best product so you can consume less and consume better.”

Others wonder if Chouinard is truly genuine or if this is all just a ploy to trick people into becoming brand loyal, thus purchasing more Patagonia products. For instance, the retailer put out a full-page ad in the New York Times with the headline “Don’t buy this jacket” back in 2011, resulting in annual sales the next two years growing almost 40 percent.

Skeptics claim this year’s Black Friday arrangement is merely just a scheme to bring people into the store, hoping these visits will lead to buying new items. Could this just be a clever strategy, perhaps playing a little reverse psychology on their customers? We’ll let you decide. But either way, the retailer seems to be confusing a fair amount of their customers – some who may feel guilty zipping up their $300 brand-new Patagonia jacket this winter.

New Client: Creative Treatment Options

Monday, November 25th, 2013

FiG is pleased to announce our new relationship with Creative Treatment Options!

The Client:
Creative Treatment Options, known to many of their clients as CTO, is an outpatient agency dedicated to assisting individuals facing crises of substance abuse, DUI, mental health, and related legal entanglements.  They take a welcoming, healing, and non-judgemental approach to treatment, making clients feel at home when at CTO.

Creative Treatment Options is committed to empowering their clients to achieve positive outcomes and personal growth.   They have an experienced staff of counselors and are able to provide a wide range of programs, therapies, and groups for healing and recovery.

The Project:
FiG will be working with Creative Treatment Options on a new website.  The current website is mostly for clients to login, and therefore lacks resources for new or potential clients looking for information.  FiG will be designing and building a new site to include information on treatments, programs, classes and more.  We will be creating an easy to navigate site where new users can find what they are looking for and learn how CTO can help them on their road to recovery.

FiG will also be updating the CTO logo and business cards with a fresh design.

Stay tuned to see the end result and website launch!

An Alcohol Ad Above The Rest

Monday, November 18th, 2013

Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey and New York based agency Opperman Weiss have teamed up to create an all but typical advertisement.  Unlike alcohol ads we usually see centered around sports or a night out which tend to use sex appeal or be dumbed down,  this ad simply tells a well crafted story.

The ad, or short film, opens with four suited men making their way through a grassy field on a rainy day.  It assumed they are reminiscing on their way, ending up at a church and cemetery.  They toast to a brother and friend, who seems to have passed on, but instead it is revealed he is actually moving on in another way.

Creativity Magazine labeled it “the alcohol ad that all alcohol ads should aspire to” and we just might agree.  We’re bummed it’s only running in Europe!