Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Three Ireland Launch #3HubTalk

Three Ireland have launched an exciting new Facebook App, Three ‘Hub Talk’. The app provides a space where some of Ireland’s favourite celebrities (including Roz Purcell, Bernard Dunne, Pippa O’Connor, Conor Mortimer and the not-so-real Marty Morrissey) will be revealing exclusive content via their own Facebook and Twitter pages. Fans will then have the opportunity to interact with these personalities.

Each day the celebs will post a link to the app of an exclusive personal video or picture. Fans will then upload their own version of the video/picture in order to win a whole host of daily, weekly & grand prizes. The celebrities themselves will each select a winner at based on how entertaining the data shared is.

Prizes up for grabs include Samsung Galaxy Minis, official Republic of Ireland jerseys and €20 top-up vouchers. Also, everyone who enters the app, even if it’s just for a nosy at the celebrity content, will be in with the chance to win the grand prize of a brand new Samsung Galaxy SIII with bill paid for a year and two VIP tickets to see Ireland take on Germany in their World Cup qualifier in October (including an overnight stay and dinner in a top Dublin hotel).

Commenting on the launch Bernard Dunne said: “Three ‘Hub Talk’ is a really clever idea from Three. It not only gives fans a chance to interact with each other in a fun and competitive way, it also means they can win really great prizes every single day. I’m a big Twitter fan and I’m always looking for different ways to interact with my followers. It’s also great for Three customers to be able to use their phone to upload data without any charges!”

Speaking about the campaign, Elaine Carey, Sales and Marketing director at Three, said: “We’re very excited to be launching Three ‘Hub Talk’ to promote our latest prepay offer. The Hub will be the perfect place for our customers to come to make great use of our ‘All you can eat’ data offering by sharing all sorts of content. From Wednesday 1st August, as well as having a place to come and share exclusive content, Three Prepay customers can snap up the Samsung Galaxy Mini on Prepay for just €69, an amazing price for a great Smartphone, with the ‘All you can eat’ data plan allowing Three Prepay customers to make the most of its enhanced social media functionality.”

For further information on Three visit www.three.ie

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Survey Reveals 1 in 5 of Irish Parents Don’t Read to Their Children

This week sees the launch of the Eason ‘Get Into Reading’ campaign. The campaign aims to highlight the importance of reading, especially with children, and is supported by leading Irish authors Cathy Kelly and Ireland's new children's laureate Niamh Sharkey. To kick off the campaign a survey

As part of the campaign, Eason commissioned Amárach Research to carry out a survey, which revealed some very interesting results. The stand out insights were...

  • While four-in-five (84%) Irish people were encouraged to read by their parents and almost seven-in-ten members of the Irish public (69%) were read to as a child, almost one in five (18%) of Irish parents never read to their children.
  • Close to two in four parents ‘pass the buck’ to their partner when it comes to reading to their children – men (42%) are more guilty of this than woman (34%)
  • More than half of Irish parents of kids under 8 have felt badly about not having time to read with their child.
  • One third cites time pressures as the main reason for not reading more to their child.
  • A quarter of Irish people read for five or more hours each week and those who were read to as a child are 30% more likely to spend this amount of time reading than those who were not read to as child – 24% of those who were not read to as a child read for an hour less each week.
  • Almost all (93%) of respondents concur that reading increases one’s vocabulary and close to half (46%) have listed reading as an extracurricular activity on their CV.
  • 79% of those surveyed would like more time in the day to read more.

Dr. John Sharry, child psychotherapist, commented on the research findings, “Establishing a daily reading time with your children is the single most important ritual, benefiting not only their learning and communication but also creating an important connection between you. The research describes the barriers to reading with children with ‘having no time’ being the most cited reason by parents. This highlights the importance of building a daily routine of reading with the ‘bedtime story’ being one of the most important of these. Bedtime reading not only provides all the educational benefits of reading, but also is an important ritual in gaining a good night’s sleep and usually a special moment of connection between parent and child.”

Ireland's leading female author and mother to nine year old twin boys, Cathy Kelly offered her thoughts, “‘It’s hard to find time to read to your children. At night time, I’m often shattered, want to throw myself into bed and am not in the mood for another chapter of the wonderful Harry Potter. But I do it and I can see the enormous difference reading has meant to my sons in terms of learning.

She continued, “Both of them now love books. When they were little, the bedtime story was part of the lovely bedtime routine. Now, it’s a fabulous time to read – and talk. Children tell you what they really feel at night. Reading gives you a lifetime of joy and even ten minutes each night can make such a difference to your children.”

According to David Field, Head of Marketing and Retail Development at Eason, “We at Eason are hugely committed to supporting literacy in Ireland, particularly among children. ‘Get Into Reading’ really draws on the importance of reading from a young age and the role of the parent in nurturing their child’s love of the written word. We recognise the passion many people share for reading and we simply want to encourage kids and adults alike to read more, one book at a time.”

In order to facilitate the campaign, Eason are calling on the Irish public to pledge their support for reading by visiting the Eason Facebook page or website. All who pledge will be entered into a weekly draw to win a €500 Eason voucher.

‘Get Into Reading’ is part of Eason & Son’s commitment to literacy and will include weekly in-store reading events for children and parents throughout the year. Each Saturday morning, participating Eason stores will host ‘Get Into Reading’ Story Time events where a dedicated member of staff will read a preselected book to the children. ‘Get Into Reading’ Story Time kicks off this Saturday 28th July.

The Eason ‘Get Into Reading’ campaign is a year-round initiative and takes place in line with other initiatives supporting literacy such as the Eason Spelling Bee which was met with huge success this year receiving entries from close to 300 schools from all 32 counties of Ireland. Later this year, Eason will also announce details of a partnership with Barnardos Children’s Charity in support of child literacy.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Heineken: ‘Yourfest’ App

Are you a music fan? In fact, it doesn't even matter. Everyone's a big enough music fan to enjoy their own completely customised and personalised music festival. And guess what? That's exactly what Heineken Live Access is offering with the ‘Yourfest’ app on the Heineken Facebook page (it's also available on www.heineken.ie/yourfest).

First, choose a music theme, then create your festival name, and finally add your dream selection of acts to play on three different stages. With your festival poster created, you can now share it with friends to compare tastes. fans can also find out how to win a trip to some of the world’s biggest real-life festivals through the app.

What is Heineken Live Access?
Heineken Live Access is offering three VIP trips to Sensation in Bangkok, Sandance in Dubai or The St. Maarten Regatta. The prize includes international travel and accommodation with entertainment along the way. Each festival features world renowned acts in an unbelievable setting, ensuring the winners will have the trip of a lifetime.

How to enter:
Pick up a special Heineken Live Access pack in-store.
Find the code on the pack.
Enter the code on www.heineken.ie

About the Festivals:
Sandance, Dubai:
Sandance is a five star, 12 hour day and night dance music festival held on the beach of the world famous Atlantis Hotel on The Palm in Dubai. The prize includes a 4 day all inclusive package for two people to Sandance in Dubai (October 12) including flights, festival tickets, hotel accommodation & transfers.

Sensation, Thailand:
Sensation has been touring the globe for about a decade now. After conquering continents like Europe, Australia and South America and attracting over 1 million people, Asia is up next hosting the Ocean of White. The prize includes a 3 day all inclusive package for two people to Sensation in Bangkok from the 17th to the 20th of August 2012 including flights, festival tickets, hotel accommodation & transfers.

St. Maarten Regatta:
The 33rd St. Maarten Heineken Regatta provides world class sailboat racing combined with the hottest concerts and after-parties! With the official slogan being "Serious Fun" it is no wonder people come from over 25 countries to attend this one of a kind regatta in the Caribbean. The prize includes a 3 day all inclusive package for two people to the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta in the Caribbean in March 2013 (dates tbc) including flights, festival tickets, hotel accommodation & transfers.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Celebrate A Very Chic Summer At Kildare Village

Next weekend, 21st and 22nd July, Chic Summer at Kildare Village will have a special treat for visitors. Members of the Irish Chamber Orchestra will be on hand to delight you with a repertoire of summer favourites. For those looking for something a little bit more upbeat, fashion blogger DJ Alex Donald will also be on hand with live sets. Expect a cool, chic, vibe along the open-air promenades of the Village. Finally, on the music front, shoppers will also have the privilege of hearing renowned Irish saxophone player Keith Donald.

Don't think music is the only thing to look forward to. Shoppers can also enjoy a ballet performance choreographed by Muirne Bloomer of ’The Ballet Ruse’. The performance, inspired by the birds of summer, will take place Friday 20th and Saturday 21st at 1pm, 3pm and 5pm. If the performing arts are your thing, this weekend will also see a parade of butterflies that will flutter their oversized wings throughout the Village. They will land at intervals so you can say hello and capture a family photo.

The ‘Chic Summer Festival’ at Kildare Village is much, much more than just these two new additions. The festival has seen Kildare Village transformed into a garden of delights, where visitors can enjoy a host of chic summer activities from bespoke floral couture installations, an artisan food pop-up and a Heritage & Genealogy trail.

Of course, Kildare Village is always about one core activity: shopping. With more than 60 luxury boutiques offering the authentic previous seasons’ collections of luxury fashion and lifestyle brands with savings of up to 60% on the recommended retail price, and sometimes more, all year round, you’re guaranteed to come home a happy shopper.

Kildare Village is open seven days a week and offers late night shopping on Thursday and Friday until 8pm, and Saturday until 7pm.

Log on to KildareVillage.com for more details on Chic Summer Festival at Kildare Village.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

NASA: Spacecraft 3D

NASA has launched a new app that lets you get up close with NASA’s robotic space explorers. The ‘Spacecraft 3D’ app shows you how the robots work and in addition highlights two actual NASA missions: the Curiosity rover that will touch down on Mars on 5 Aug 2012 and the twin GRAIL spacecraft, Ebb and Flow, currently orbiting the moon.

Using your iPhone or iPad camera, the app uses an AR functionality to display the spacecraft and then overlays content and information directly onto the 3D spacecraft.

Download the app here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/spacecraft-3d/id541089908

Monday, July 9, 2012

30-Hour Videogame Marathon Sets New Guinness World Record

----- Press Release -----

DUBLIN, Ireland – July 9, 2012 — With thousands of people watching worldwide, Laura Rich of Cardiff, Wales, and Kathleen Henkel of Oakland, New Jersey, set a new Guinness World Record Wednesday for Longest Videogames Marathon Playing a Card Game, and raised tens of thousands of pounds for charity: water in the process. The event, which took place simultaneously in London and New York, involved each participant playing PopCap Games’ latest social game Solitaire Blitz on Facebook for 30 consecutive hours totalling more than 1,500 hands. PopCap has also confirmed that Solitaire Blitz is currently in development for iOS, allowing more players to experience the Guinness World Record-setting game in a new dimension when it launches on iPad®, iPhone® and iPod Touch® later this year.

All proceeds from the related pledge drive, which garnered US$92,577, will enable charity: water to build 18 new wells that each will provide 250 people in developing nations with clean drinking water for at least 20 years. Combined with PopCap’s own pledges of $5,000 per player, marathon players Rich and Henkel utilized a unique pledge mechanism created for the occasion to garner pledged charitable contributions from more than 1,400 people around the world. Both women exceeded the minimum 25 consecutive hours necessary to establish the record, and both stopped playing after exactly 30 hours, thereby sharing the record.

The most significant innovation in more than 20 years of the beloved card game played by more people than any other, Solitaire Blitz has already attracted five million lifetime players and more than 600 million games played per month since its official launch on March 12. Combining the simplicity of standard solitaire with social camaraderie and friendly competition, as well as the bonuses, power-ups and beat-the-clock excitement of PopCap’s other hit social games Bejeweled® Blitz and Zuma® Blitz, Solitaire Blitz has seen two billion hands played since launch making it a game that is incredibly easy to play and impossible to put down.

"Laura has showed resilience and an unshakeable passion for gaming over the last 30 hours, and she has certainly earned her place in the Guinness World Records family. Congratulations to Laura and her support team for an incredible record-breaking accomplishment,” said Gaz Deaves, Gaming Editor for Guinness World Records.

“While achieving a world record today is an amazing feat, the thrill of helping earn nearly $100,000 for an organization as great as charity: water is arguably just as exciting,” said Laura Rich, 31-year old mom of three from Cardiff, Wales. “To know that my love for a videogame helped bring clean drinking water to thousands of people is an honour I will never forget.”

About charity: water

charity: water, www.charitywater.org, is a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. We raise awareness about the one billion people living without life’s most basic need and invite others to join our mission. Then, we use 100% of public donations to fund clean water solutions in areas of greatest need.

About PopCap
PopCap Games, www.popcap.com, is the leading global developer, publisher and operator of casual video games: fun, easy-to-learn, captivating games that appeal to all ages across PC, mobile, social and other platforms. Based in Seattle, Washington, PopCap was founded in 2000, was acquired by Electronic Arts in 2011, and has a worldwide staff of more than 600 people in Seattle, San Francisco, Vancouver, B.C., Dublin, Seoul, Shanghai and Tokyo. PopCap's games have been downloaded over 1.5 billion times by consumers worldwide, and its flagship franchise, Bejeweled, has sold more than 50 million units.

Carlsberg launches ‘Crate Escape’ in Ireland

Today, Monday 9th July 2012, Carlsberg have released the details of their latest TV ad 'Crate Escape'. This Thursday, 12th July, Carlsberg's humorous take on the film ‘The Great Escape’, will air in Ireland before any other market.

The ad is set in a remote health spa where a bunch of lads have been forced to join their partners on a luxury spa break. Obviously the lads in question would much rather be somewhere else. This leads to an ingenious plan to add a much needed element to the whole experience: a cold Carlsberg.

Our hero calls on his mates to break out and smuggle a crate of Carlsberg back into the spa, and just like Steve McQueen and the lads in The Great Escape these crafty chaps use a host of cunning and oddball methods to get the job done. To be honest though, you should just watch it...

Speaking about the new ad, Karen Murphy, Senior Brand Manager, Carlsberg, said: “We’re delighted with our new TV ad ‘The Crate Escape’ and to be chosen as the first market to air it. The commercial reinforces the Carlsberg brand message and offers some light-hearted entertainment as our hero steps up and comes good by his mates and his girlfriend. Carlsberg has a reputation for producing - memorable ads with clever wit and we believe ‘The Crate Escape’ will be really well-received amongst our audience. To coincide with the launch we are running a themed competition on the Carlsberg Ireland Facebook page to giveaway a weekend break to either Barcelona or Berlin for four mates.”

Developed by creative agency Fold7, the 30, 50, 80 and 90 second ad was directed by Peter Lydon whose work includes hit Channel 4 TV shows Shameless and Teachers, and features music from the Elmer Bernstein score for ‘The Great Escape’. The ad will be rolled out across Carlsberg's global markets, kicking off in Ireland, Sweden and Belgium on 12 July.

To view the new ad first and be in with a chance of winning some fantastic Carlsberg Crate Escape prizes, visit Facebook.com/CarlsbergIreland.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Electric Ireland: The Road To London

Electric Ireland have launched a new Facebook game to celebrate their involvement with Team Ireland at London 2012. There are lots of prizes to be won including an all expenses paid trip to the Olympics!

Check it out for yourself here.

A really nice feature to the app it that it also allows you to customise your Facebook cover photo at the end to show your support for the Irish Team.

Ogilvy Dublin Scoop Coveted Lion at Cannes Lions for ISPCC

Pictured (L-R) Lloyd Byrne, Director of Fundraising at ISPCC, Dave Smyth,
managing director, Ogilvy Dublin and Michael Duffy, managing director, Blinder Films.

----- Press Release -----

Ogilvy Dublin’s work for ISPCC was recognised on a global scale at the Cannes Lions where the agency picked up a Bronze Film Craft Lion award for Direction at Cannes. This award was the highlight of a number of accolades bestowed on the ISPCC’s “I Can’t Wait” campaign, which has garnered widespread praise and recognition on a national and international level. The ad was a collaboration led by Ogilvy Dublin working with Blinder.

The International Festival of Creativity, known within the industry as the Cannes Lions, is the world’s leading celebration of creativity in communication. The awards, which have been running since 1954, take place every June in Cannes, France. This year over 28,000 entries were received from all over the world with awards handed out in 16 categories. Ogilvy Dublin was the only Irish agency to pick up an award and furthermore was the only Irish agency to have work shortlisted in the awards.

Speaking on the agency’s success, Dave Smyth, managing director at Ogilvy Dublin said, “This is an amazing achievement for Ogilvy Dublin. The win is a credit to the incredible hard work that our team has put in and I am delighted that our work here in Ireland is being recognized as some of the best in the world. The Cannes Lions were a tremendous success for the wider Ogilvy family, Ogilvy & Mather won the coveted Cannes Lions 2012 Network of the Year Award and we were delighted to be a part of that win.”

Smyth continued, “We have been working with the ISPCC since 2009 and it is an organisation we have the utmost respect for. The work they do is paramount and we are proud to work with them. From the beginning the main aim of the campaign was to create awareness for this important cause and we believe we have achieved that.” Globally, Ogilvy & Mather topped off an impressive year with the most successful Cannes Lions in the company’s history. In addition to winning Network of the Year, Ogilvy won a record 83 Lions in total. Some of the award winning work included Lions for brands including: Coke, Hellmann’s, IBM, Sprite, Forbes, Carling and the ISPCC.

Lloyd Byrne, director of fundraising at ISPCC said, “We are very honoured to have picked up this prestigious award. In the creative process for this campaign our main objective was clear; to make an advert that would attract attention and highlight the cruelty of child abuse. From the awards and recognition this campaign has attracted we believe we have met that objective.”

Richie Smyth of Dublin based Blinder picked up the bronze for Director’s craft at the annual awards, which are regarded as the ‘Oscars’ of the advertising industry. “We are delighted to have been awarded with a Cannes Lion, the most prestigious award in advertising” said Blinder managing director, Michael Duffy. “It is testimony to the courageous creative work of the Ogilvy team and the willingness of ISPCC to embrace challenging ideas which has made this commercial such a worldwide phenomenon.”

In addition to the recent win at Cannes, the campaign was also recognised by the D&AD Book which is one of the most respected creative judging forums in the world. This was the first time that an Irish agency had been honoured in over 7 years. Business Insider also voted the ad as the number one ad in the world for 2011. The campaign was also honoured at the CLIO awards held in May in New York where it picked up one of CLIO’s iconic statues which are the most widely recognized and coveted symbol of the industry’s creative accomplishments. Other awards bestowed on the campaign include; a Gold Award in the “Public Interest” category at this year’s EPICA Awards; a Gold Award at the “Global Best Digital Advertising Awards” in Bangkok, Thailand; a Bronze Award in “TV Cinema/Online Film Direction” at the London International Awards (LIA). It was also named “Advert of the Year” on tvads.ie, and listed as the “#1 Ad Worldwide”. In Ireland the campaign picked up 2 Golds and 3 Silvers at the ICAD Awards. ICAD is Ireland's preeminent creative body - and the annual awards are the greatest opportunity for Irish creatives to have their best work recognised and rewarded by their peers. It was also awarded a Silver at the Kinsale Sharks. This collection of awards makes the campaign one of the most awarded pieces of Irish advertising in history.