in the spotlight

#FFWD2015 Day 3: From Passionate Brands to Passionate Fans

Posted by Shirley Brady on January 28, 2015 06:14 PM

Day 3 at Advertising Week Canada in Toronto today covered topics ranging from brand-building in a customer-centric world to building engagement and passionate communities, with speakers from the NHL and Twitter. Below, enjoy some key takeaways from participants; don't miss our coverage from days one and two; and follow the action at #FFWD2015: Continue reading...

branded content

Snapchat Launches AT&T-Backed Series in Branded Content Push

Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 28, 2015 04:35 PM

Snapchat AT&T SnapperHero

A day after announcing it's no longer just an ephemeral messaging app where users can set a time-limit for photo, video, text or drawing ‘snaps’ before they disappear, Snapchat is officially in the original content business.

On Tuesday, Snapchat introduced its users to Discover, a platform giving brand marketers the ability to syndicate their videos via branded channels. Partners at launch include MTV Networks' Comedy Central, Scripps' Food Network, CNN, ESPN, National Geographic, Vice, Yahoo, and Warner Music Group. 

A day later, it has launched its first original series in SnapperHero, a shortform scripted series featuring YouTube and Vine stars with input from viewers. It's sponsored by AT&T and produced by Astronauts Wanted, a teen-skewing content studio headed by MTV Networks' former CEO Judy McGrath and backed by Sony, and Fullscreen Inc.Continue reading...

super bowl

5 Questions: Frito-Lay CMO Ram Krishnan on Crash the Super Bowl 2015

Posted by Dale Buss on January 28, 2015 04:04 PM

Doritos Crash the Super Bowl Trouble in the Back Seat 2015

It's late January, meaning it's almost time for the big event on February 1. That would be the reveal of the winner of Doritos' Crash the Super Bowl advertising contest.

True, there will be a football game played that day and telecast on NBC. But Frito-Lay's nine-year-old crowdsourced annual commercials for its popular chip brand have become such a cultural fixture that they'd probably fare pretty well on their own, without the backdrop of the Super Bowl and football and all that other stuff.

Of course, the game and its viewership are required to justify the approximately $4.5 million per 30 seconds that Frito-Lay will pay to air the two winning ads. Doritos already has selected 10 finalists and posted online the shortlist from the amateurs' submitted ideas—nearly 50,000 this year.

Fans can vote for their favorites until midnight tonight, with the popular winner and another selected by the Doritos team getting the air time.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Gotcha Milk: MilkPEP #GetReal Milk Truth Fights Whitewashing Claims

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 28, 2015 02:03 PM

Milk Truth

A glass of milk once sat on a sainted list for all Americans that included such things as baseball and Budweiser. The former, of course, became tainted with the performance-enhancing-drug era while the latter now boasts corporate headquarters in Belgium.

Milk is facing its own hurdles and the dairy industry is doing all it can to fight back. Last year MilkPEP (aka the US dairy industry's Milk Processor Education Program) ended its longstanding "Got Milk?" campaign—known for its celeb-heavy milk mustaches—in a bid to address a deeper existential crisis.

Last year was also when the British Medical Journal published findings that challenged milk's health claims with research indicating that “drinking lots of milk could lead to earlier deaths and higher incidents of fractures,” the Associated Press reports. While the British researchers “urged a cautious interpretation” of the study, that didn’t stop a slew of news organizations and anti-dairy bloggers brabbing onto the idea that “Milk Can Kill You!”

Now the dairy industry is fighting back in the most modern way it can—social media—with a campaign that was quickly ambushed by the forces it's trying to fight.Continue reading...

chew on this

No, Domino's Is Not Turning Dominatrix for Sriracha Pizza

Posted by Shirley Brady on January 28, 2015 01:02 PM

Domino's S&M ad

Is Domino's turning into a Dominos-trix? The above ad, seemingly 'tied' to the looming 50 Shades of Grey release, raised eyebrows when it surfaced this week, prompting a hasty explanation.Continue reading...

sustainability

IKEA's Annual Sustainability Report Shows Bright, LED-Lit Future

Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 28, 2015 12:28 PM

The IKEA Group Sustainability Report for fiscal year 2014, released today, indicates that the world's biggest furniture retailer is delivering on its People & Planet Positive strategy. The corporate citizenship-foucsed company is delivering results socially and financially, with total 2014 sales to EUR 28.7 billion, a 5.9% increase over 2013.

“FY14 was a good year for IKEA,” stated IKEA Group President and CEO Peter Agnefjäll. “We reached some important milestones towards becoming energy independent and saw a 58% increase in the sales value of products that enable people to live a more sustainable life at home. Sustainability is an integral part of our business strategy.”

As highlighted in the new report:

• Sales of IKEA products for a more sustainable life at home grew by 32% compared with 2013, reducing water usage and waste. Continue reading...

super bowl

Mtn Dew Kickstart Preps Game Day: 5 Questions with Jamal Henderson

Posted by Dale Buss on January 28, 2015 11:59 AM

Mountain Dew is a unique success story in the struggling carbonated soft-drinks business, with PepsiCo's youth-tinged brand proving at least able to hold its own in sales over the last few years in a declining category and outperforming the company's flagship Pepsi brand and other carbonated soft drinks (CSDs) as well.

What's the secret? For one thing, the Mtn Dew brand itself is unique. And over the last several years, PepsiCo has done a particularly good job of bringing innovation to Mtn Dew with new flavors, limited-time flavors, crowdsourcing of flavors and effective marketing aimed at Millennials.

Three years ago, Mtn Dew struck gold with the introduction of Kickstart, a line that is infused with 5 percent juice and vitamins as well as the taste, fizz and caffeine that have always made Mtn Dew appealing. What's more, Mtn Dew was able to nurture Kickstart into a $250 million-plus brand in just its second year.Continue reading...

branded content

Tumblr Invites Brand Marketers to Create, Discover and Engage

Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 28, 2015 11:01 AM

Tumblr Travel Alberta

As Yahoo continues to test revenue models (and finally resolve its Alibaba stake), its Tumblr brand is becoming increasingly attractive as a messaging platform for marketers.

Yahoo is slowly delivering brand partners to help monetize, leverage and create engagement on Tumblr with ever more sophisticated resources for branded content and outreach.

Case in point: Tumblr's partnership with Canada's Travel Alberta, a provincial tourism program aimed at drawing American tourists north of the border to experience Banff and its other stunning sites.Continue reading...

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