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Save Our Saucepans

SOS Print Ad 1938 Ladies Home Journal

Last night at Pop-Up Magazine I was chatting with two people, one from Clorox and one from a Clorox steel wool supplier, who gave me a quiz I failed: What does SOS stand for in SOS pads? Turns out it’s Save Our Saucepans. Whatever those letters stand for, there’s nothing that polishes your aluminum pans “like new and like magic” like SOS. At least if you believe (as I do) this 1938 ad from Ladies Home Journal.

200 Brands With the Largest Ad Budgets

Would you have guessed that Chevy spends more than Ford or Toyota? Or that Macy’s spends more than Target? Other rankings that surprised me: Arm & Hammer spends more than Gatorade, Kia spends more than Volkswagen, and Ashley Furniture spends more than Ikea.

Check out this great infographic that ranks the top 200 brands by the size of their 2009 and 2010 ad budgets.

Top Auto Ad Spenders

The top two in each category (first, second):

Auto: Chevy, Ford
Retail: Walmart, Macy’s
Apparel: Skechers, Nike
Telecom: AT&T, Verizon
Restaurants: McDonald’s, Subway
Food and Beverage: Coke, Campbell
Beer: Budweiser, Miller
Cleaning Products: Tide, Clorox
Financial Services: American Express, Chase
Beauty and Personal Care: L’Oreal Paris, Olay
Insurance: Geico, Progressive
Consumer Electronics: Microsoft, Apple
Media: DirecTV, Dish Network
Drugs: Lipitor, Cialis

Clorox As Content Curator

Clorox Sponsored Curation Site for Moms

Federated Media has teamed up with Clorox on a metablog for moms that pulls content from top womens and parenting sites such as Dooce, Rookie Moms, Girls Gone Child and Her Bad Mother. The site is powered by Foodbuzz, a curation platform (and community of 4000+ food bloggers) acquired by FM in 2010.

From Clickz:

“Federated Media Publishing has launched the first of what it has dubbed ‘DailyBuzzes,’ or sites that will curate content around specific topics with a variety of brand partners. The first site, DailyBuzz Moms, will, not surprisingly, target moms (and some dads) in partnership with The Clorox Company.”

I love the idea of brands investing in marketing projects that also attempt to provide a consumer service. Many will fail, but I appreciate the effort to do something beyond an interruptive product pitch. So I’m rooting for Colorox and FM on this one, but they’ll face at least two obstacles on the road to a big and engaged audience. One, they aren’t the only curators in town. They’re up against hundreds of sites and services that also promise to filter and present a digestible sampling of the day’s best parenting content, including the bloggers they’ve partnered with. Two, they head into that battle — a battle for consumer attention — with a hand tied behind their back. Unlike an independent blogger or a new startup, Clorox has its brand to consider. Earlier this week, tech bloggers achieved record traffic by covering the Bin Laden story. Heather Armstrong at Dooce reached new audiences 2 years ago when her unhappy rant directed at Maytag went viral on Twitter. Will Clorox be open to republishing quality content, even if it’s sometimes controversial? I hope so.

At first blush, I’m a fan. If you like the idea of StumbleUpon, Digg or Twitter, but don’t have the time or patience for all that randomness, it’s a simple way to discover new voices around your favorite topics — in this case, Mom content. And tapping into an existing platform like Foodbuzz (both the technology and the humans) will give Clorox a leg up.

Disclosure: I was part of the founding team at FM and worked there from 2005 to 2009, and I continue to have a crush on the entire Armstrong family, who create Dooce.