New Video content added August 23rd 2007
Theatre Zippo adverts, Magazine Zippo adverts, Television Zippo adverts. All I have found are on this page. The upper part of the page is devoted to advertisements seen in printed form, while the lower part of the page shows any video advertisements and factory tours I have managed to find.
1937 Esquire advertisement.
George Blaisdell had such conviction in Zippos future, that in 1937 he made the potentially drastic move of borrowing $3000 to run a one page advert in the December issue of Esquire magazine, an advertising strategy aimed squarely at the Christmas shoppers. The illustration was of a woman lighting up a cigarette in the wind. 'Windproof Beauty' (by Enoch Bolles), was using a different approach to previous advertising, which had until this time used outdoor sports scenes. Using an illustration of an attractive woman, the advertisers were presumably aiming to appeal to the male readers of the magazine, the magazine itself being targeted at the urban male. The advertisement failed in its efforts to bring in the big orders. There were few dealers who stocked Zippo at the time, with the direct result that many readers who saw the advert and wanted to make a purchase were unable to find a retailer in their area.
This was still a memorable milestone for Zippo, who would
later run adverts in such major magazines as Life, the Saturday Evening Post and
Readers Digest, along with numerous other publications.
The illustration has for many years been confused with the drawings of Alberto Vargas, so much so, that many call her 'The Varga Girl', This misconception was taken a step further in later years when Zippo themselves released a Varga Girl lighter. Those who know better call her 'Windy'.
Zippo's advertising in the early beginnings of the venture may have been slim, but as many of these images show, Zippo eventually left no stone unturned when it came to advertising, The whole family set being targeted for the Zippo 'gift' idea.
(Television/Theatre adverts and other Zippo videos).
The following videos are actually streaming from Youtube. I don't really like having content off site, solely as it is hard to keep track of when it fails or gets deleted. But in deference to the amount of bandwidth available to me with this site, it was do it this way or not at all. Feedback (on this page especially, and anything else on the site) would be appreciated, along with information on any adverts and tour links not already shown here.
Click on the play buttons to play a video in situ (without leaving this page), or click on the image (away from the play button) to go to the Youtube site.
If you have a slow broadband connection you will find the video stutters badly, if the playback does struggle, then pause the video for 30 seconds to allow the buffer to catch up, when you restart it you will get playback as it was intended. Once a video is played through to the end, clicking play again will play using the buffer without having to go through the pause and start issue all over again.
The first video is an old black and white Zippo advertisement. Tacky it may be, but as it is ancient, you can't really pick on it too much.
This video is in German, and I understand all of about 3 words from the whole 10 minute clip. That said, it is Awesome. It's obviously a trip around the Zippo factory, showing both manufacture and repair of the Zippo Lighter. I would love to have seen it in English, but as this was all I could find, it will have to do. Well worth watching.
A cool modern Zippo advert. Good Zippo tricks and I love the bit with the lighter components splitting and rebuilding.
Something for the weekend sir? It's that easy. In your dreams.
Guaranteed to make you smile, especially for the pulp fiction fans.
Yet another old advert, this time using the statue of liberty for effect.
Old black and white Zippo ad with a really cheesy jingle.
Old Zippo advert aiming at the Christmas shoppers.
A bit of one upmanship by a Zippo in giving a lady a light in another old advert.
This is the big bad wolf Zippo ad. A portion was briefly seen in the German video (higher up this page). This is the full advert in all it's black and white glory.
A short video showing the manufacturing plant, also has a small bit of information about collecting Zippo's. It's not as visually impressive as the German language video shown elsewhere, but the voiceover is in English, and it's worth a look.
A 19 minute long Zippo Tour video voiced in English. The video had to be split into two parts to show it using Youtube. Both parts are now a shade under ten minutes long (obviously). The Video shows the manufacture, plating, polishing, painting and every other aspect of the cases creation from strips of brass to the annoying safety label being applied (and if you watch carefully, you will see the safety label is actually applied twice by Zippo staff, something to consider for those who leave them on for originality). It doesn't show insert manufacture , but the detail of the case creation and finishing makes this one of the best videos yet relating to Zippo manufacture.
Part one of the Zippo tour video.
Part two of the Zippo tour video.
Another excellent Zippo lighter manufacturing video, Finally addressing the inserts manufacture along with the actual casing. This, along with with the previous 2 part video (shown above) pretty much touches on the majority of everything related to the creation of a Zippo.
An interesting and technically excellent animation of a meeting between a Zippo and a Match. The Zippo in this animation being given a slightly evil makeover. It's not strictly an advert, but it was so well done, I thought it deserved to be here. I liked the way the animators managed to get such good facial impressions from the Zippo with very little change to the chimney.
A friend of mine recently bought a Rippo lighter off eBay. He didn't know it was a Rippo until it arrived, and after complaining to the seller, he was refunded. The lighter stayed in the hands of my friend as the seller didn't offer to reimburse the cost of sending it back. Which then led to the thought, what should happen to a Rippo in a Zippo collectors possession? If he suddenly died and the family started selling his collection, would his name and knowledge be tarred by the inclusion of a Rippo in his collection? Being a friend, I helped him out in this difficult situation. The following video shows how we eventually chose to address the problematic Rippo.