The Advertising Olympics

When there are so many restrictions in place against advertising something, it can start working in your favour. Paddy power chose to talk about a different London with the poster above. Nike chose to celebrate sport in Londons’ around the world with their viral campaign.

Specifically not mentioning it can help Anyone wearing Nike trainers, drinking Pepsi and paying with a Mastercard gets special discount at Odbins, who have launched an ad campaign ‘not mentioning it’.

Another way of getting round the rules is to just get it all wrong…

All of this is ‘brand protection’ and to ‘protect official sponsors’. For example, the only chips allowed to be served at the Olympics are McDonalds own [1]. In terms of beer, Heineken is the only branded beer to be served [2]. All of this has spawned a running article on The Drum called The Fauxlympics [definitely worth a full look – 1,2, 3, 4, 5], where people are invited to send in fake olympic related adverts using the appropriate brand. Here are some of my favourites:


The flag for South Korea was mistakenly displayed at a women’s football match between North Korea and Colombia.

The ad has been booked into the sport and Olympic supplements of the following papers today (27 July): Metro, The Sun, the Daily Mail, Daily Star, The Daily Telegraph, The Times, Daily Mirror, The Independent, I, The Guardian and the Daily Express.

Part of the success of this campaign is the instantaneous response from the Specsavers creative team to see an opportunity and get it printed in nationwide paper the next day. The ‘campaign’ has been seen once before when England met Ukraine at the Euros.


Valve Handbook

A possible handbook given to employees of Valve easing them into their new job. While I’m not sure if this is genuine or not, it sure is well designed with humor and nice illustrations and it describes an awesome sounding place of work.

(Download for a better view)

I’m sure they need some graphic designers so I’ll be applying for a job and no doubt planning my move over there any day now!



“swissted is an ongoing project by graphic designer mike joyce, owner of stereotype design in new york city. drawing from his love of punk rock and swiss modernism, two movements that have (almost) nothing to do with one another, mike has redesigned vintage punk, hardcore, and indie rock show flyers into international typographic style posters. each design is set in berthold akzidenz grotesk medium, all lowercase.” [source]

Here are a selection of some of my favourite of the posters. There are many, many more to be found on the site.


[swissted website]

Laughing Stock

“As far back as 1840, OXO has been known to brighten spirits as well as aid strength and promote good health, even being sold in chemists and given to troops in World War I to boost moral. It seems however that these traditional uses for OXO have long been forgotten.

Through an alternative range of stock cubes I hope to revive OXO’s medicinal purposes and help raise a smile at the dinner table.

My overall solution is a ‘pun’ in itself, with each variety of stock cube featuring a particular genre of comedy; Slapstick, Surreal, Satire & Dark Humour.Contained within each box and printed on the foil are the faces of 12 comedians specific to those styles of comedy.

The copywriting on each box reflects the tone of voice specific to that genre of comedy giving a humorous twist on the traditional packaging format.”

A super solution by Stuart Mitchell which was just commended by The Roses Student Awards.

[Originally from]