Under The Influence

 
 

Under The Influence

Take an unprecedented ride through the hallways of the ad industry.

Host and adman Terry O'Reilly explores why we make the shopping decisions we make, and how we are influenced by words, colours and images. He tells stories of the remarkable creativity found at the higher realms of marketing, and analyzes the ads we love to hate.

Under The Influence is not a show about advertising.

It's a show about life through the lens of advertising.

Updated: Saturdays
Download episodes from this podcast for: 4 Weeks
Visit Show Site: http://www.cbc.ca/undertheinfluence


All podcast episodes

Use the links below to download a file.

S8E03 - A Matter of Time: The History of Commercial Lengths

This week, we look at the history of commercial lengths. From the very first 10-minute radio commercial in 1922, to five-second commercials today, the length of ads has changed dramatically over the decades. But it isn't the changing lengths of commercials that's so fascinating. It's the reasons why.

Download S8E03 - A Matter of Time: The History of Commercial Lengths
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:35]


S1E13A - When Brands Houdini

From the Digital Box Set: This episode is about how major brands in our lives simply vanish. One of magician Harry Houdini's most famous tricks was to make a 5-ton elephant disappear in front of large audiences. Marketing has its own version of that trick - when big brands vanish into thin air. Like auto brands Oldsmobile and Pontiac, now both gone. Big retail brands like Woolworth's and Eaton's, both no more. And a big brokerage house, once the second largest in the United States, E.F. Hutton, now just a historical footnote. Each was an elephant in their respective categories, all now vanished. This is an archived episode that aired originally on March 31, 2012.

Download S1E13A - When Brands Houdini
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:34]


S1E14A - Mascots

From the Digital Box Set: This episode looks at the wacky world of advertising mascots. The ad industry has a long history with mascots, as they are some of the most enduring advertising symbols of all time. As a matter of fact, mascots have outlived most other advertising campaigns. The Jolly Green Giant just turned 84, for example. But this episode is about the modern mascots of advertising. In many ways, they resemble the mascots of the past, each created to personify the essence of the product. But they contain differences, too, mostly in the great strides technology now offers. We'll look at the E-Trade talking baby mascot, the Coke Polar Bears, the Great A&W Root Bear, and of course, the Energizer Bunny, who keeps on going and going and going? This is an archived episode that aired originally on April 7, 2012.

Download S1E14A - Mascots
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:39]


S1E15A - Charlie Bit My Ad: When Advertising Works Too Well

From the Digital Box Set: Back in 2007, a cute video of two kids was uploaded by their father. In it, one kid bites the finger of the other. That video, called "Charlie Bit My Finger" went on to attract 420 million views. To say it over-performed would be an understatement. The same phenomenon occasionally occurs in the world of advertising - because sometimes ads work too well. In some instances, the ads work so well, it creates problems for the advertisers. Like Axe Deodorant, whose marketing to insecure men worked so well, it became known as the brand for geeks and dorks. Or retailer H&M, who featured a poster of supermodel Heidi Klum wearing a bikini, and had their entire advertising campaign stolen the next day. Then there's Priceline.com, whose commercials starring William Shatner worked so well, they had to kill him off. This is an archived episode that aired originally on April 14, 2012.

Download S1E15A - Charlie Bit My Ad: When Advertising Works Too Well
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:12]


S1E16A - Sex In Advertising

From the Digital Box Set: The advertising industry has a long history of using sex to sell products. Woodbury's used sex to sell soap as far back the 1920's - and the campaign was written by a woman. But the use of sex has always been a polarizing technique. We'll explore how Calvin Klein built an empire on sex, how Abercrombie & Fitch revived a dying brand with sex and we'll look at the fascinating story of a beer company that used sex to sell its product, then were sued by its own female employees. This is an archived episode that aired originally on April 21, 2012.

Download S1E16A - Sex In Advertising
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:34]


S1E17A - Hypertargeting

From the Digital Box Set: "Hypertargeting" is the next frontier in 21st century marketing. Marketers are gleaning and buying more and more personal information about consumers online. People are also being tracked online, as marketers watch their buying habits. Using that deep information, advertisers are "hyper-targeting" consumers with ads that are tailor-made for individuals. Featuring the products they want, when they want them, at a price based on their spending ability, at the precise moment they are about to make a choice. How much advertisers know about you is remarkable. This is an archived episode that aired originally on April 28, 2012.

Download S1E17A - Hypertargeting
[mp3 file: runs 00:26:19]


S1E18A - Colour Schemes: How Colours Make You Buy

From the Digital Box Set: In the world of marketing, the use of colour is a studied science. As a result, colours play a bigger role in your purchasing decisions than you may think. A colour can make you feel a certain way about a company, or it can trigger a specific desire. A simple change in colours can affect the sales of a product immediately, or a certain colour can make us seem more desirable to the opposite sex. Colours can encourage us to spend money - or even gamble. There is no doubt about it, colour is a secret language. This is an archived episode that airs originally on May 5, 2012.

Download S1E18A - Colour Schemes: How Colours Make You Buy
[mp3 file: runs 00:26:13]


S8E02 - Wacky Ad Spaces

This week on Under The Influence, we look at unusual and unexpected advertising placements. As the world of marketing gets more and more cluttered every day, it's forcing advertisers to get creative. From urinals and sheep to foreheads and armpits, welcome to the world of wacky ad spaces.

Download S8E02 - Wacky Ad Spaces
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:52]


S8E01 - Jumping The Shark: Spokesperson Disasters

Welcome to the 2019 season of Under The Influence. In this first episode, we look at spokesperson disasters. Hiring a celebrity spokesperson is an advertising strategy many brands can only dream of. But famous names don't come cheap. From Oprah Winfrey, to Gilbert Gottfried and Eric Clapton, celebs attract a lot of attention. But so do their mishaps.

Download S8E01 - Jumping The Shark: Spokesperson Disasters
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:54]


S1E01A - A New BRIC In The Wall

From the Digital Box Set: Welcome to the first episode of Under The Influence. In this show, we focus on the emergence of the BRIC nations as the new marketing force in the world. BRIC is an acronym for: Brazil, Russia, India and China. Unlike North American markets, which are wobbling, the middle classes of these four nations are experiencing explosive growth. As a result, they are creating innovative marketing tactics and strategies we've never seen before. BRIC countries are about to completely influence North American marketing as we know it. This archived episode aired originally on January 7, 2012.

Download S1E01A - A New BRIC In The Wall
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:39]


S1E02A - Men Are From Sears, Women Are From Bloomingdale's

From the Digital Box Set: This episode examines the different ways in which men and women shop. Deep in our DNA, our shopping habits have been formed and the differences between the genders couldn't be more stark. Most men are tactical and mission-oriented, whereas the majority of women like to browse, compare and window-shop. Most men like to buy and leave, but women like to take their time. As a matter of fact, a recent study showed that women spend eight years of their lives shopping. Retailers have observed these differences for decades and the ways they have designed shopping environments around them to influence purchases is fascinating. This is an archived episode that aired originally on January 14, 2012.

Download S1E02A - Men Are From Sears, Women Are From Bloomingdale's
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:39]


S1E03A - Voices of Influence

From the Digital Box Set: This episode explores how voices influence us in all corners of our lives. From computer voices, to phone operator voices, to the voices we hear at airports. Some expensive celebrity voices in commercials are hardly recognizable, while other anonymous voices are sometimes twice as influential. The texture, the qualities, the inherent warmth or aloofness of a voice are just as important as the content the voice delivers. This is an archived episode that aired originally on January 21, 2012.

Download S1E03A - Voices of Influence
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:36]


S1E04A - Great Brands That Never Advertise

From the Digital Box Set: This episode looks at famous brands that built their companies without advertising. It's so rare in this world to build a multi-million, or multi-billion dollar company without relying on advertising. But several companies have done just that - and with enormous success. This is an archived episode that aired originally on January 28, 2012.

Download S1E04A - Great Brands That Never Advertise
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:31]


S1E05A - Getting Personal in the Classified Ads

From the Digital Box Set: This episode is about the history of the classified ads. We trace the very first classified ad in North America through to the explosion of classifieds online. At any given time, a glance at the classifieds tells us exactly what we were wearing, what we had lost, what we wanted to find, and how we courted. From "Lost and Found," to "Help Wanted," to the wild and wacky world of "Personal" ads, the classified section is an incredible chronicle of our existence. This is an archived episode that aired originally on February 4, 2012.

Download S1E05A - Getting Personal in the Classified Ads
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:39]


S1E07A - The Marketing Genius of Steve Jobs, Part 1

From the Digital Box Set: This special two-part episode is about the late Steve Jobs. When you look at his vast technical accomplishments, it's easy to forget he was a great marketer. As a matter of fact, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak said that marketing was Jobs' greatest skill. We'll unpack his boldness as a marketer and the success that launched Part Two, where we will look at his many marketing strategies from 1997 to his death in 2011. This is an archived episode that aired originally on February 18, 2012.

Download S1E07A - The Marketing Genius of Steve Jobs, Part 1
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:18]


S1E08A - The Marketing Genius of Steve Jobs, Part 2

From the Digital Box Set: This is part two of our look at Steve Jobs the marketer. This episode traces his triumphant return to Apple after being banished for 12 years and his bold choice to release advertising that suggested Apple was on the cusp of greatness, even though the world knew it was on the brink of disaster. But that bravado pays off as Jobs inspires his company and releases the iMac, iPod, iTunes and Apple retail stores all in the same year. Then Jobs hits his stride and releases not only the iTunes store but the iconic iPhone, and with it, some of the most effective advertising the industry has ever seen. His marketing instincts and his courage further propel Apple to even greater heights with the iPad. And even as he is diagnosed with cancer, he manages to build Apple into the second most valuable company in the world. This is an archived episode that aired originally on February 25, 2012.

Download S1E08A - The Marketing Genius of Steve Jobs, Part 2
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:28]


S1E09A - Movie Marketing

From the Digital Box Set: This week, we explore the critical importance of movie trailers to a film's success. Hollywood now spends an average of $32 million per movie to advertise. But trailers have changed dramatically over the years - and now many give away the entire story line. How much is enough? Do you tease with plot points or do you give away the ending to attract more moviegoers? Do audiences today now want to know the ending before seeing the movie? We'll look at several films that chose to give it all away in the trailers, and in particular, the movie "Castaway" - which had trouble generating an audience, until it gave away the ending in its advertising. This is an archived episode that aired originally on March 3, 2012.

Download S1E09A - Movie Marketing
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:36]


S1E10A - Marketing In A Crisis

From the Digital Box Set: When companies are hit with a crisis, it can be a defining moment. In the world of marketing, it's an all-hands-on-deck situation - because communication is one of the most important keys to handling a disaster. How a company handles a crisis reveals everything about that organization, and no company is ever truly ready for the crisis that befalls them. We'll look at the famous Tylenol tampering case, the recent Carnival Cruise disaster, how New York City struggled to let the world know it was still open for business in the wake of 9/11, and how Mr. Alec Baldwin handled his mini-PR crisis when he was kicked off a plane for refusing to turn off his cell phone. Someone once said: "Never waste a crisis" - let's see if that philosophy holds true. This is an archived episode that aired originally on March 10, 2012.

Download S1E10A - Marketing In A Crisis
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:28]


S1E11A - Accidental Brands

From the Digital Box Set: It may surprise you to know that many famous brands were invented completely by accident. They weren't the result of years of research, or painstaking experiments, or scientific brilliance - they were simply stumbled upon by mistake. Like IMDB (the Internet Movie Data Base) that began as a simple list of pretty actresses compiled by a movie buff. Or Play-Doh, which started life as a wallpaper cleanser. Popsicles were invented when a flash freeze surprised the residents of San Francisco one night. A certain breakfast cereal was originally invented in a sanatorium to suppress sexual urges. And speaking of lust - Viagra was created for completely non-sexual reasons - then became a blockbuster wonder drug. Each is famous, their stories are fascinating and all are accidental brands. This is an archived episode that aired originally on March 17, 2012.

Download S1E11A - Accidental Brands
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:46]


S1E12A - Handcuffed By Brand Image

From the Digital Box Set: This week, we explore a very interesting marketing predicament: When brands get trapped by their own image. Every once in a while, expensive brand images circle around to damage the brand. Like Apple, which acted completely out of character when an iPhone prototype was found in a bar. Sometimes, a brand image can actually kill a brand - like Pets.com, which created an image it couldn't deliver on. Or the diet suppressant called Ayds, which found itself trapped inside a 40-year old brand image when AIDS the disease began its devastation. Or the Hummer, which found itself trapped in an era of gas-price and climate concerns. Then there's the Hans Brinker Budget Hotel in Amsterdam - worst hotel in the world, with the worst brand image - and they like it that way. This is an archived episode that aired originally on March 24, 2012.

Download S1E12A - Handcuffed By Brand Image
[mp3 file: runs 00:27:30]


Big News from Under The Influence

Hi, folks. We're very excited to announce the arrival of our Digital Box Set. For the first time ever, the entire Under The Influence archive of past episodes will be available for download right here free of charge. No more waiting, no more paywall. So if you missed any of our earlier seasons, here's your chance to catch up on any of the over 140 episodes. Beginning tomorrow, we're releasing Season One of our archives, with the other seasons to quickly follow. Download the Under The Influence Digital Box Set right here - with the first season rolling out January 3rd. Hope you enjoy it.

Download Big News from Under The Influence
[mp3 file: runs 00:01:44]


We're back January 3rd

Hi there. How you doin'? It's been a while. Just wanted to let you know that Under The Influence is back beginning Thursday, January 3rd. From spokesperson disasters, to cannabis marketing, to products made by monks - we've got a fun season planned. Hope you'll us.

Download We're back January 3rd
[mp3 file: runs 00:01:40]