Archive for January, 2007

Vista Launch In Second Life

29 Jan 2007

It’s been a hell of a week and lots of things have happened. We’ve received a ton of press coverage already on national radio, in the newspapers and so on. It’s great to be part of something that spans such a wide audience. In this post, I’ll line up the final state as it is in Second Life for ‘our’ Vista/Office 2007 launch event.

Today, we are present on 10 official locations, where billboards and branded players have been put up to announce the event.

The Strawberry Estate is the first one. It’s my very own chunk of land in the game, with in the garden a miniature version of the Atomium, the monument where in real life the event is being organized. In every sphere of the monument, 10 people can reside. In every ball, a plasma screen has been put upon the walls. Normally all the balls will be colored as they will be lighted out in real life. In the Strawberry Estate Club, two giant screens have been put up next to a few sets of dancing balls, so people can enjoy the concert while dancing. Outside there are a few billboards to direct people to the right location, to other clubs in Second Life that have teamed up.

Straberry Estate, Atomium

Next, and this is truly a top of the bill, is the Parioli Club, in the Virtual Italian Parks region. What they have done is beyond all imagination. They’ve created a themed location and it looks very very cool. These guys have done an amazing job! It’s been a pleasure working together with them.

Parioli Club - Virtual Italian Parks

Parioli Club - Virtual Italian Parks

Third, The Sanctuary Rock. One of the most popular locations, is also joining the event. They’ve also put up billboards to announce the concert. The club is an ancient looking castle on a hill, an hosts tons of events.

Sanctuary Rock

Next participant is Club Elements at the GoL (Goddess Of Love) region. Also a high-roller in Second Life, a top location club with an impressive reach. Very trendy design and highly popular.

Elements Club @ Goddess Of Love

Continuing the line is Crayonville Island, the home of marketing guru Jaffe Juice, very well known with all marketing bloggers and new marketing adepts. Crayon is the first virtual marketing agency that also has a real life department. They’ve opened up their events amphitheater for us, and are welcoming the event with open arms. That will lead to quite some blogposts, without any doubt, since Jaffe Juice (aka Joseph Jaffe) is one the web 2.0 marketing pioneers. Bert Van Wassenhove from ‘One Agency‘ arranged our presence here. Cool!


Next is the Isle Of Lesbos, an island made just like the real one, with ancient ruins of the old Roman and Greek buildings. We get the entire beach front with ocean view and waving palm trees.

Isle Of Lesbos

Then we have the Mermaids Gentlemans Club. This club has a subwater level, with animated tropical plants and fish. The dancefloor is see-through and above the reef, and at night it has a very cool effect.

Mermaids Gentlemans Club

The 8thth partner club is ShowGirls, a casino and club that hosts a lot of events day in, day out. The video player is placed directly at the teleportation point and it’s outside on the terrace in the poker area. Looks very classy.


Closing the line is the Liquid Dreams club. An industrial strip joint with a load of Lords of Acid fans. They were amongst the first to literally beg to become a partner, and they’ve been arranging ad space with most of their partnering malls and clubs. These guys are overjoyed to be part of our little initiative.

Liquid Dreams

Then last but not least there’s the Irie Vibes Club, one of Second Life’s most popular open air reggae clubs. I don’t know why they want to partner, but Bert from the ‘one-agency’ (our marketing agency) also set this up. They’ve also hung the billboards and screen and are advertising in their own network to get the word out. Looks good as well!

Irie Vibes Club

Here are examples of the billboards that have been distributed to appear on various locations in the game, mostly in malls and on crowded locations.

Billboard 1

Billboard 2

The last billboard is scripted, in the game, clicking on a name will give you a teleportation link to that location. Clicking the ‘’ link will open a browser and it will load the site of the event.

The branded player we handed out to all the club owner can be copied as many times as they want, and it lights up in the dark. Once we’ve enroled the streaming and the URL is known, we’ll hand out the right address and everyone will be able to connect. The player is 8 meters wide and 6 meters high, that should work out fine.

And so, that’s where we stand now. Let’s break it down into numbers for reach.

Second Life has a region limit (per land) of 50 avatars, to be sure, let’s count 45. That means that through the official partners, we reach out to 450 to maximum 500 people who can watch the event for free, at the same time.
But, there’s also about 8 other clubs who joined ‘too late for the marketing train’, and they too received a player and some billboards. If I count those in as well, we have a potential reach of between 800 and 900 avatars. (an avatar is a second life citizen)

As for ‘general reach’ I’ll list up the daily traffic of each event location, traffic for today:

Irie Vibes Club: 24,533
ShowGirls: 7,853
Mermaids: 3,600
Liquid Dreams: 4,723
Parioli Club: 22,759
Elements at GoL: 132,049
Sanctuary Rock: 59,984
Crayonville: 397
Strawberry Estate: 1,790
Isle Of Lesbos: 47,906

That totals a daily reach of: 305,594 avatars.

Suppose only 10% of them looks at the billboards, then we still reach 30,000 people a day, with simple brand awareness. I know for sure more people look at the billboards, but I’m trying to be negative, just to not overestimate it.

Most of the clubs and locations have their billboards up for a few days already, so you can at least multiply by two (or three), and then we do not count the billboards in the 8 clubs that aren’t on the partner list, and we don’t count the effect of the billboards that have been put in several malls and other crowded locations. And we can’t measure the word of mouth effect either. But at least you can say: we’re making a point, and it’s being heard.

The guys from One Agency also made a ‘road show’ t-shirt which will be distributed for free, and they’re taking care of the technical part, the streaming and convertion. If all goes well, we’ll be able to feed a live Praga Khan concert to 2000 citizens of Second Life. That would be awesome!

I’ve had a lot of discussions with people in Second Life about brands and marketing, but I do know that everyone is really ‘pro’, because at least we didn’t just buy our way in. We come in with something that has never been done before, on an unseen scale. And we don’t take from the community, we give. That’s the best place to be for a brand.
Now the only thing I hope for is that Second Life will not be down at the time of the event. I’ve noticed the Linden Labs (the creators) through their support channel a week ago, but they haven’t got back to me (yet). Fingers crossed, and let’s have some fun!

All of you have the opportunity to follow the exclusive Praga Khan concert tomorrow, organised for the Belgian GA Launch, via streaming. Tune in at 11 PM CET! Check out and Experience the “Wow”!

SLUrls can be found here


Radio Contact

22 Jan 2007

These ads for the Belgian radio station ‘Radio Contact’ are pretty funny, although I don’t really think they bring the message across that good. What I interpret from these visuals is that you should keep feeling good, even though the situation is looking kinda ‘f*cked’, and you’re probably not really going to survive in the same healthy condition as you were before. I hope the visuals are just meant to be humorous, because frankly, the last thing I want to do in situations as these is relax, sit back and listen to the radio. Obviously. But the approach is non-traditional, and I like that. The tongue-in-cheek thing, you know. I really like the drawing of the cavemen inside the dinosaur. I bet they wished they had music back then :) The dentist is totally off the hook, I don’t really like that one, but the guy painting the ‘H’ for the chopper on the roof, well… he’s just genuinely screwed. Hah!

Copy:”Whatever happens, feel good – Radio Contact”

Agency: Leo Burnett
Account Team: Rodolphe Coonen, Lise Gausset
Creative Directors: Jean-Paul Lefebvre, Michel De Lauw
Copywriter: Gregory Ginterdaele
Art Director: Marie-Laure Cliquennois
Photographer: Marc Paeps
Retouching: beefactory
Media: Magazines, dailies



22 Jan 2007

Ian Hart from the Miami Ad School sent in this ad he helped create for Tampax, a well known brand of tampons. The key message here is that Tampax absorbs a lot. I like the way they illustrated the effect of Tampax by using a color sample card that displays all kinds of red, as to where Tampax is, that color should normally be ‘bloody red’ or something. But now it isn’t, because the tampons absorbed the colory monthly liquid.


Title: Tampax Red
Student Work (Miami Ad School)
Miami Beach, U.S.A.
Creative Director: Diego Cantu (instructor)
Art Director: Croix Gagnon
Copywriter: Ian Hart


3D Metal BMW Billboard

22 Jan 2007

I’m in Munich at the moment to attend a 4-day class for Microsoft. When I arrived at the airport and was still waiting for my luggage to come out of the black luggage-spitting-hole, I noticed this really cool billboard for BMW and I just had to snap a picture of it. Sorry for the low quality, it was taken with my mobile phone. What they did here was recreate the front look of the new BMW series in metal, and place a picture of the engine behind the real ventilation grill. The billboard was at least 4 meters high and I estimate it’s around 6 or 7 meters long. I snapped a sideview picture as well to show the construction of it. Damn impressive.

BWM Munich Airport 1

BWM Munich Airport 2

BWM Munich Airport 4

I hadn’t seen car advertisement like this before, although I’m well aware of the fact it must’ve been done already, somewhere, by someone. I can tell you this: it works. At least 7 people were taking pictures of it together with me. All of the same flight. If that happens with every flight…


Vista Launch

19 Jan 2007

Like I already mentioned on my other blog, it’s been a very very busy week. I had to run from one meeting to the other to get myself up to date and informed about everything that’s going on for the Windows Vista launch event of January 30th. I myself am taking care of the virtual pillar of the event, namely the live streaming into Second Life on over a dozen of locations in the game. It’s going to be one frigging huge event. Together with One Agency, which is taking care of the stream conversion, we’re placing huge movie screens at the clubs everywhere in the game, to stream a live concert of Praga Khan that will be simultaneously broadcasted on the website, 3G (mobile streaming) and then of course also in the virtual world. The real life event will be at the famous Atomium, a national monument that looks like a gigantic molecular structure. It’s a prestigious location, and every sphere of the construction will have its own theme. The real life event will have around 850+ guests, the stream to Second Life will (if all goes well) takes another 1500 gamers to the Vista and Office 2007 launch event for a free and live concert. I don’t think any concert has ever been streamed on that scale, ever. Fingers crossed and hope it works out fine. I’ll keep you posted.

Atomium Brussels

Active balls of the Atomium will feature:

  • Music Sphere
    Unique digital concert, relaxing atmosphere,… Highlights: Vista Music and surrounding features
  • Digital Memories
    A Unique picture-editing workshop, where the Photo-Touch-Up from Vista will be explained. Michiel Hendryckx, one of the better Belgian press photographers will give tips there as well.
  • Innovation Made In Belgium
    Innovative cases by Belgian companies. Highlights: Vista’s productivity environment.
  • Personal Productivity
    Classroom of the future, Office 2007 Quiz,… Highlights: the Vista PC with Office 2007 suite.
  • Gaming
    Challenge ‘enfant terrible’ Frank Molnar on the gigantic plasma screens. Highlights: Vista Games Explorer.
  • Tv & Movies
    HD imaging with director Wim Robberechts, learn to create your own movies and pictures in HD. Create your own personalized DVD of ‘Belgium, The Movie’ (and take it home with you afterwards). Highlights: the HD revolution, supported by Vista.
  • Top sphere: VIP lounge, surprizes and stuff I can’t talk about yet.

I’ll tell you more as soon as I can. Belgian launch site: (Dutch/French)


Sony Bravia

19 Jan 2007

This is some pretty cool artwork for the famous superdeluxe huge Sony Bravia. The flying car reminds me of one of those scenes from ‘The Dukes of Hazard’ and the execution of the artwork really makes it seem like having a Bravia in your living room places you right in the center of the action. This one’s a keeper. I’m going to cut the center where the action is and have it enlarged and framed. Looks stunning.

Sony Bravia

Agency: Downtown Partners, Toronto
Via: A/D Goodness


Back On Track

17 Jan 2007

It’s been a busy last couple of days really. I’ve been working on some really excting projects at Microsoft, I gave a radio interview to Flemish radio station ‘Studio Brussel’ about Second Life and I gave some sort of keynote about economical activities, making money and brands in Second Life as well.

I realize I kind of neglected this blog a bit. I had to re-evaluate the time schedule for blogging because of all the extra stuff that came up, but I think I worked it out. I also started a blog about my Microsoft adventures. You can tune in to that at

Stay tuned for some ad-action in the very very near future. Thanks for visiting, and see you around.


Posted in General


Coolz0r On TV

12 Jan 2007

Last tuesday I was on national television to give a bit of a demo of Second Life, the virtual world. It was quite the experience to have a director, a reporter/researcher, a camera guy and a sound guy in a cosy room at my house. Friday night they’ve spent about three hours here, and Saturday they were back from 2pm til 7pm. All this time they were asking question, filming and waiting for Second Life to load. All these hours of film resulted in a clip of about 8 minutes, and in that clip two fellow bloggers (and marketeer-friends) were also interviewed. I think it was a nice demo, and I’m glad they didn’t cut it down to ‘dating and sex’, because there’s a lot more to Second Life than just that. I’m too lazy to get it subtitled at the moment, because I’ve had a busy week and it’s a clip with a lot of talking. I’ll break it down in a few phrases for you.

First there’s an intro with some fast facts about second life, then the journalists demonstrate how they’ve created the first Belgian reporter in Second Life. Then I take over and show off my property a bit, while talking about the stuff you can do in the virtual world. Then Clo Willaerts, the marketing manager from Skynet talks about communities and places SL in the world of people like a pub or ‘the movies’, on the third place in the people’s lives. (school/work, home & and a third leisure spot). Bert Van Wassenhove, Manager of “One Agency”, talks about SL as a channel to reach out to consumers, and then there’s a piece about pr0n and escorts and some footage of clubs and fun things to do.

“Koppen” (translated: Heads), the program that featured this documentary, has a reach of app. 850.000 pairs of eyeballs. Not bad at all for a first time appearance on TV. It’s not really a big deal, but rather more of a nice experience.
Monday at noon, a reporter from StudioBrussel, a popular radio station, is coming to my work at Microsoft for an interview for her show as well. It’ll be aired on Tuesday, but I don’t know the time yet.

The clip above is take from Robin’s, but since he uploaded it to YouTube and I don’t blog YouTube clips… I uploaded it to DailyMotion.


Posted in Games