2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

social media watch

Super Bowl's Real-Time Battle: JCPenney Mittens vs Budweiser Puppy

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 3, 2014 07:49 PM

Following last year's blackout, which Oreo won hands down in a real-time marketing play hard to replicate, brands this year did all the prep work they could ahead of the Super Bowl to best prepare for that fleeting moment of social opportunity. What they couldn't prepare for, though, was a boring game. 

And so while brands over-touted their hashtags and engaged in banter with fans over their ads, there were bound to be missteps. This year's Super Bowl real-time battle was a "is this account hacked?" face-off between JCPenney and Budweiser.

In an attempt that left many wondering if JCPenney's Twitter account had been hacked (although our editor-in-chief called it), the struggling retailer seeded the stunt with a promotional tweet pushing its Team USA mittens—and then things got weird.Continue reading...

uphill battles

2013: Misogyny in Advertising Still There

Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 9, 2013 07:02 PM

While some strides were made in gender stereotypes in media this year, there’s still a long way to go. 

A Time.com article, "How Far We Haven’t Come: All of the Terrible Ways the Media Treated Women in 2013 in One Video," marks how decades of progress in branding still fall far short of satisfactory:

When it comes to the portrayal and treatment of women in the media, we’ve come a long way since the Mad Men era... And yet, in 2013, it’s still not unusual to hear messages like "I’m not saying she deserved to be raped, but…" or "Women just aren’t as good at math as men" crop up on the web or on TV.  

The Representation Project, focused on challenging gender stereotypes in media, created the supercut above to show how pervasive sexism persists. BuzzFeed’s list of “Casual Sexism In Advertising” includes Platinum Blonde Beer at #1, followed by Tampax, Jesus Jeans and Toyota. Continue reading...

web watch

The Mother of Virality: From Cat Memes to Politics, BuzzFeed is an Unstoppable Force

Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 5, 2013 04:43 PM

BuzzFeed, arguably the king of viral content on the web is projecting 2014 revenue to be as high as $120 million, according to Ad Age, as it now ranks among the top news sites with traffic more than four times last year, reaching 130 million-plus unique visitors in November.

Started in 2006 by Huffington Post co-founder Jonah Peretti, BuzzFeed is the gold standard of headlines and cat memes in a world on digital overload. Peretti’s original intent was an engine for viral content chosen primarily by algorithms, but today, his company has amassed an impressive and well-credentialed editorial staff and is moving into creating original video. 

The record-setting spike in BuzzFeed’s November traffic is due in part to Facebook’s change in algorithm that brings more of its stories to user’s news feeds, but Twitter referral traffic has also surged with 180 percent growth in the past year. Buzzfeed’s YouTube channel reached 110 million views globally in November, and the site’s global unique user numbers are up 350 percent year-on-year.Continue reading...

ad watch

FTC to Convene Panel as Native Advertising Augments

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 19, 2013 05:40 PM

If you're still confused about what native advertising really is, you're not alone. In fact, the general topic has become such a great concern that the Federal Trade Commission is convening a workshop on Dec. 4 to hopefully clear up the blurred lines between editorial and ad content that is increasingly confusing consumers.

Native advertising, a.k.a. blended advertising, branded or sponsored content, “is a type of converged media that combines paid and owned content into commercial messaging that is fully integrated into, and often unique to, a special delivery platform,” as defined by the Altimeter Group

Key to the ongoing conversation is what publishers and ad companies must do to make sure consumers can spot the differences between different types of content. The new approach to advertising is used by practically every web publisher in some form, from brand partner stories on BuzzFeed to sponsored posts on Facebook.

Registered workshop participants include representatives from such brands, as well as NPR’s Bob Garfield, former dean of Columbia Journalism School Nick Lemann, ad-tech companies like Outbrain and Sharethrough, and executives from The Huffington Post, Edelman, and Procter & Gamble, among others.Continue reading...

social media watch

Pinterest May Look Sweet and Innocent, but It's a Serious Traffic Driver

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 16, 2013 08:11 PM

Pinterest—the visual-heavy darling of social media now drives more traffic to publishers than Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit and Google+ combined.   

The data just released from Shareaholic, a social plugin service that mines data from 200,000 publishers and reaches 250 million monthly unique visitors collectively, shows Facebook in the lead driving 10 percent of overall traffic to publishers in September, far exceeding all other social networks, with Pinterest second at 3.68 percent—three times more than Twitter.

The four-year-old ‘virtual pinboard’ is aggressively pursuing a path of global expansion with a 66 percent year-over-year traffic increase as evidenced by a new partnership with international broadband provider Telefónica ensuring a new Pinterest widget will be pre-loaded on Android phones sold by the telecom company in Europe and Latin America to the provider’s 316 million-strong customer base.Continue reading...

social media watch

Pinterest Woos Print Brands with 'Pin Now, Read Later' Article Pins

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 26, 2013 12:42 PM

At 4 years old, Pinterest is stepping up and out of the photo-centric ‘virtual pinboard’ model it has risen to success with, adding ads in the form of ‘promoted pins,’ and now article pins to woo publishers and readers.  

Pinterest is aggressively seeking to leverage its more than 5 million daily article pins from brands like BuzzFeed for whom the pinboard has become a top traffic referral. The new article pins will give brands the ability to include headlines, authors, story descriptions and links to the source from the pin itself.

“The addition of the more useful article pins is only one of many changes taking place at Pinterest this year, as the company moves to turn its growing traction into a real, monetizable business," TechCrunch notes. “The move to expand the focus to articles and news content, then, could potentially position Pinterest as a modern-day bookmarking tool akin to Delicious, or even a competitor to 'read it later' services like Instapaper or Pocket.”Continue reading...

traveling brands

Holiday Inn Out to Prove that It's Not Your Parents' Hotel Anymore

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 20, 2013 10:42 AM

Holiday Inn is shelling out $1 billion to prove to consumers that it's not just their parents' hotel anymore. The record-breaking hospitality campaign hopes to change traveler opinions on the long-time hotel brand, making it a more relevant choice for young families and Millennials.

Titled “Change Your View,” the campaign is wrapped up in a single one-minute commercial that demonstrates the many different people that stay at Holiday Inns, and the many possibilities that the hotel holds for visitors. According to BusinessInsider, the ad will be running on 15 major US networks, such as during NFL games on CBS, as well as online.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Uniqlo, Renault, ESPN and more

Posted by Dale Buss on May 28, 2013 09:24 AM

In the News

Uniqlo kept out of Bangladesh safety pact by owner Fast Retailing.

Renault suffers blow from failure of Better Place EV startup.

ESPN layoffs underscore sports-network battle and soaring rights fees.

Acura eyes emerging markets.

BMW hints at bringing out super-luxury coupe with a Pininfarina touch.

BuzzFeed, CNN and YouTube plan online-video channel.

Club Med buyout sees large role for Chinese investors.Continue reading...

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