branded entertainment

Lexus Puts a Velvet Rope on its Twitter Account for VIP Film Screening

Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 23, 2014 01:26 PM

Brands have found all sorts of ways to spread their messages via Twitter, but Lexus is breaking the mold with its latest campaign.

In a branded entertainment move, Toyota's luxury automotive brand is set to release two short films by indie filmmakers on October 27 that are being produced by the Weinstein Company and explore the theme “Life is Amazing.” 

The groundbreaking moment, though, happens one day earlier, when Lexus will become the first luxury brand to lock up its Twitter account to new followers, allowing those who are already following it to use a private link to watch the films before anyone else—and turning its Twitter fans into a VIP list for a private, virtual screening.Continue reading...

going mobile

Twitter Pitches Future as Broader Mobile Services Company

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 23, 2014 12:29 PM

Making a move for more mobile dollars and presence, Twitter this week announced Fabric, a mobile app platform for developers, as it jockeys for position against rivals Facebook, Google and Yahoo.

CEO Dick Costolo introduced Fabric as "the future of mobile software development" at Flight, Twitter's mobile developer conference in San Francisco, where he also highlighted "a future that is built on a collection of fully integrated end-to-end services. It is entirely about you and your users, not us,"  according to Ad Age.Continue reading...

sustainability

MINI Turns Biggest U.S. Campaign Into Lasting Memento for Car-Buyers

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 23, 2014 11:37 AM

Making drivers walking brand ambassadors—and doing good for the environment—inspired MINI USA to turn its biggest-ever marketing campaign, for the 2014 Cooper Hardtop, into an opportunity for a sustainable memento.

The approach combines fashion, branding and sustainability. In partnership with Relan, a U.S.-based manufacturer of repurposed billboard and banner products, MINI is recycling its ad campaign materials into reusable totes for every new MINI Cooper Hardtop owner in America.

In keeping with the brand's new tagline, “The New MINI. The New Original,” each one-of-a-kind tote is a MINI work of art, sporting a label that reads: “This bag is made from used MINI billboards. There is no other like it. Just like you and each MINI.”Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: P&G, Pandora, Chevrolet and more

Posted by Dale Buss on October 23, 2014 09:15 AM

TOP STORIES

Chevrolet celebrates pitching sensation Mo'ne Davis in longform commercial.

Amazon still finds profit elusive.

Macy's links with Google to show shoppers what's in stock nearby.

P&G ousts North American head in executive shuffle as CEO Lafley re-sets succession plan.

Pandora opens listener data to let musicians target fans.Continue reading...

auto motive

Auto Brands Scramble to Protect Owners from Faulty Takata Airbags

Posted by Dale Buss on October 22, 2014 06:03 PM

Problems with faulty airbags made by major supplier Takata have largely been overshadowed by the continuing flow of recalls this year from General Motors, Toyota and other automakers. But now, according to The Wall Street Journal, the seriousness of the safety flaws in these ubiquitous airbags is being underscored in important new ways: U.S. Federal prosecutors have begun an official investigation into the Japan-based supplier and its dangerously defective products.

For owners of up to 7.8 million Toyota, Honda Mazda, BMW, Nissan, GM, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Chrysler and Ford vehicles—essentially, the entire roster of brands in the American market—the NHTSA has issued a warning that they should "act immediately" to fix Takata's defective airbags, the New York Times reports.

Toyota is trying to take this directive one better by asking its Lexus dealers to disable Takata airbags in the models in question if they can't be replaced. And Bloomberg notes that GM plans to warn owners of 2003-2004 Pontiac Vibe hatchbacks who are in warm-weather areas not to allow front-seat passengers until the defective air bags are replaced. "We are treating this urgently," GM Spokesman Alan Adler said. Continue reading...

car talk

Michelin Taps Teen YouTube Stars to Teach Kids About Safe Driving

Posted by Dale Buss on October 22, 2014 05:01 PM

All sorts of brands related to cars—and some that aren't—have tried public service campaigns and branded content to highlight the dangers of driving, especially while intoxicated or distracted, to the teenaged motorists who are most vulnerable to fatal mistakes.

Now, Michelin has come up with "Beyond the Driving Test," a campaign for National Teen Driver Safety Week this week with the hashtag #safedrivers to make new and young drivers more aware of potential safety hazards that are less directly the result of negligence or distraction but which can be just as deadly.

To make that message resonate, the tire brand is harnessing some of the biggest teen influencers on YouTube to share clever videos that shed light on problems such as poorly maintained tires.Continue reading...

traveling brands

Uber Expands Globally (and Physically), with a Few Teething Pains Along the Way

Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 22, 2014 03:42 PM

Car service provider Uber may be making moves into international markets, but so far, their path hasn't been the smoothest.

Drivers in Chicago, L.A. and London, among other cities, are gathering outside the company’s offices today protesting “Uber’s reduced fares, Uber’s tipping policy, the five-star rating system, and driver safety,” according to Business Insider. In New York, drivers will simply turn off their phones during the designated protest period so customers cannot access them.

“It's not just a small group of disgruntled or unprofessional drivers, as Uber would like to cast us,” Joseph De Wolf Sandoval, an Uber driver and the president of the California App-Based Drivers Association, one of the protest’s organizers, told Business Insider. “It's a nationwide feeling of general unhappiness and unease with policies and programs that are being promulgated by Uber without the drivers' input whatsoever.”

These kinds of challenges might be expected for an unorthodox company that is vying to enter a slew of new markets and provide innovative services in its preexisting arenas. Continue reading...

bc q&a

The Interactive Explorer: 5 Questions With Blippar VP/GM Lisa Hu

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 22, 2014 01:31 PM

Augmented reality (AR) is a burgeoning playground for brands as smart tech takes on the bridging of all things physical with virtual applications to engage consumers. 

AR isn’t new, but the rise of wearable technology such as smart watches and glasses, along with GPS tracking, sensors and camera technology on mobile devices, has pushed it over the tipping point. Case in point: AR start-up Magic Leap just raised $542 million in a funding round led by Google and Qualcomm.

A major player in this sphere is Blippar, which harnesses AR and image-recognition technology for smartphones, tablets and wearables. Using the Blippar app, users hold their phones over blippable content to trigger a digital experience known as “blipping.” 

Brands can render any content, logos, products, magazine advertisements, billboards instantly interactive from any mobile device. Jaguar, for example, this month launched a global campaign that integrated Conde Nast print ads for Google Glass wearers, starring British actor Nicholas Hoult. Primark just launched a holiday campaign in the U.K. using its technology.

“The marketing industry is increasingly shying away from impressions and warming up to true, meaningful interactions, as these are more valuable metrics,” Blippar GM USA, Lisa Hu tells brandchannel. “This is where Blippar can truly excel from the CMO's perspective.” Continue reading...

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