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Google Pays Homage to Old School Advertising By Giving it a Modern Twist

When Coca-Cola decided to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony, I’m sure they hoped it would catch on and help them sell a few bottles of soda. They didn’t set out to create one of the world’s most iconic advertising images but that’s just what they did and forty years later we’re still talking about it.

Project Re: Brief is a Google-backed documentary that revisits those classic campaigns of the past with an eye toward inspiring a new generation of advertisers on the internet.

Harvey Gabor (Coca-Cola’s “Hilltop); Amil Gargano (Volvo’s “Drive it like you hate it”); Paula Green (Avis’ “We try harder”); and Howie Cohen and Bob Pasqualina (Alka-Seltzer’s “I can’t believe I ate the whole thing”) all come out of retirement to help reinvent the campaigns they were known for.  Through the use of modern technology, these old ads get new life as interactive campaigns for the internet and the tablet.

Alka-Seltzer’s famous over-eater becomes a character viewers can play with, call and influence as he moves through his day.

Avis tries harder with a campaign that instantly turns customer stories into animated videos they can share.

The new Coca-Cola ad, literally lets you buy the world a Coke with the press of a button.

These reimagined ads show us what we can do, and what we aren’t doing, with the technology we have available. They’re about involving consumers in the process through the use of interactive features, video, and social sharing. But they also, and maybe more importantly, acknowledge where we’ve come from.

One of my great loves in life is film and TV production. And there is nothing that gets me more excited than talking to the pioneers who got it done with nothing but sweat and passion. Sometimes I think we let technology get in the way of creativity and you can see that in this documentary. Long before CGI, and digital cameras, and script software, ad men were turning out amazing works. Shouldn’t we be able to equal that and more with what we have today?

Watch Project Re: Brief and get inspired, because when it comes to internet and mobile advertising, we’re not even close to doing all we can do.