2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

branding together

Brand Bites: Watch IFC's Portlandia Skewer Anti-Corporate Art

Posted by Abe Sauer on March 3, 2014 03:39 PM

"Since the 50s, one common target about making a statement has been McDonald's. Ronald McDonald plus something violent and crazy like money equals… shock."

So begins the excellent takedown of anti-corporate art from IFC TV series Portlandia. It's just the latest brand integration from the product placement-friendly satire series. In fact, the show has re-teamed with Geico on its latest storyline that kicked off the first episode of the show's fourth season last week.Continue reading...

car talk

Volkswagen Fills US Launch Void with Talk of New Products and Quirky Tie-Ins

Posted by Dale Buss on July 17, 2013 12:24 PM

With a lull in new-product launches in the US after three years of torrid sales increases based largely on new vehicles, Volkswagen is having to dig a bit deeper to create interest among American consumers and dealerships. One strategy would be talking up future new products, and another is finding new ways to wring mileage out of its great campaign around the Beetle Convertible.

Volkswagen AG CEO Martin Winterkorn just told Bloomberg that the brand may bring its uber-luxury sedan, the Phaeton, back to the US market after a brief appearance several years ago. Back then, the notion of a $70,000 near-Audi at the top of Volkswagen's threadbare US-product lineup was too much for American premium consumers to swallow, so VW pulled Phaeton back to Europe and some other markets.

But now, with VW enjoying a much more significant presence and fuller vehicle lineup in the critical US market, Winterkorn said, it's Phaeton time again. "A brand as large as Volkswagen needs a halo [car] in the upscale segment," he told the news service. "We've seen what happens to brands that don't have that kind of" vehicle. He apparently didn't elaborate on how Phaeton would become more appealing to American consumers now or how its presence in the US might affect the tremendous recent accomplishments of the sibling Audi luxury brand in America.Continue reading...

product placement

ABC, NBC and IFC Push Boundaries of In-Show Brand Integration

Posted by Dale Buss on February 8, 2013 05:33 PM

A Ford ad ties into the NBC series The Smash. So far, the show has brought lackluster ratings.

The Middle, Smash and Portlandia offer three examples of the growing seamlessness between product/brand placement and the creative content of TV series.

On ABC's The Middle this week, the episode was practically an ode to two brands: iPad and Red Lobster. The youngest child in the Heck family, Brick, pines and pesters for an iPad until his parents, Frankie (played by Patricia Heaton) and Mike, finally relent and buy him a restored model on eBay. Until they do, a huge chunk of the script is devoted to Brick's description of the wonders of the iPad.

Much of the rest of the story depicts the family at a Red Lobster, naming the restaurant repeatedly and including a shot of a juicy lobster. (A Red Lobster ad also aired during the episode — though there was no commercial for iPad.)Continue reading...

media brands

VH1 Gets #Plussed With New On-Air Look and Logo

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 8, 2013 05:42 PM

When VH1 got started way back in 1985, the cable TV network followed right in the footsteps of its sibling MTV, although focused its efforts at an older demo. While MTV (short for Music Television) scored big with tunes for adolescents and young adults (Men at Work, anyone?), VH1 (an acronym for Video Hits One) was going for the slightly older crowd, playing music videos featuring the likes of Elton John, Donna Summer, and Rod Stewart.

The thirst for an endless stream of music videos on both Viacom-owned channels came to a halt only a few years into their collective existence and shows with varying levels of quality were cranked out. VH1 scored hits with the annotated Pop-Up Video series, the gossipy tell-all bio series Behind the Music, and the artist-centric VH1 Storytellers. The music in both brands has consistently been drowned out since then with a slew of other programming, inspiring the perennial plea by boomers to bring back the music to MTV and VH1 (season three of IFC's Portlandia kicked off with a plotline to take back MTV from tween with its original VJs and news anchor, Kurt Loder.)

VH1, for one, has decided to indicate that shift with a change in its logo (or as the company likes to call it, "tagmark"). 

As announced at the TCA TV Critics Association press tour, VH1 is kicking off the new year by adding a plus sign to the end of its logo, to reflect the changes in the digital world — meshing together the network’s music, pop culture and nostalgia content together — in tandem with adopting a black-and-white look and feel to its visual identity and on-air promos. It's promoting the new look with, naturally, a #plussed hashtag on Twitter.Continue reading...


White House Puts Turkey Pardon to the Facebook Test, With Nate Silver Shout-Out

Posted by Shirley Brady on November 21, 2012 03:02 PM

The White House today was the scene of the annual pre-Thanksgiving turkey pardon, with Cobbler and Gobbler getting a reprieve — along with a shout-out to New York Times stats-cruncher Nate Silver ("once again, Nate Silver completely nailed it") and Facebook, the platform on which (in a first this year) the turkey pardon was opened to public voting. Portlandia-ready infographics (below) gave more details on each turkey's background to help voters decide. The First Family then went to Martha's Table, a food pantry in Washington, D.C., to help assemble Thanksgiving meals to be distributed to the less fortunate this holiday.Continue reading...

brand vs. brand

AMC Networks Enlists Don Draper, Indie Comics in Dish Network Battle

Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 11, 2012 01:57 PM

Being dropped by the second biggest satellite TV operator in the U.S. (after DirecTV) is no laughing matter. Still, IFC is leveraging its award-winning original comedy series Portlandia also with its two new comedy series, Comedy Bang! Bang! and Bunk, to help convince viewers to lobby Dish Network to not drop the AMC Networks-owned channel as part of Dish's legal threat to drop IFC and its sister networks under the AMC Networks banner.

Visitors to IFC.com are greeted with a pop-up that reads: "DISH Customers - DISH is dropping IFC. If you are a DISH customer, you won't be able to watch our films and shows like Portlandia, Comedy Bang! Bang!, Bunk, and Whisker wars. Tell DISH to put IFC back on the air. Call toll free 855-8-KEEP-ON or go to KEEPIFC.com." Once they click through the "don't let IFC go black on DISH" pop-up and enter the site, visitors will see on of the banners above in rotation across the site.

If, however, they click through to KeepIFC.com to find out what all the fuss is about, they'll be redirected to KeepAMCNetworks.com, and discover that it's not just IFC but also Sundance Channel, AMC (home to Mad Men and Breaking Bad), and the female-skewing WE TV. Once there, they can click on "get the facts" to learn more about the background to the legal spat, which stems from a prior lawsuit between Dish and AMC Network's now defunct VOOM HD Networks, a high-definition suite of channels that existed back when AMC Networks was known as Rainbow Media and HD TV sets weren't as ubiquitous as they are today.Continue reading...

local branding

IFC Goes LoCo for Local Advertising

Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 4, 2011 12:00 PM

If you don’t know them already, you will now, as Rhett & Link, seen above, take on their latest starring role as judges in the celebration of low-budget, local commercials in IFC’s launch of its first LoCos awards.

Voters are eligible for a $250 cash prize for casting ballots for the greatest stars, jingles, taglines, mascots, special effects and more, as the LoCos join a tradition of local advertising built on the shoulders of off-beat characters including New York’s hi-fi king Crazy Eddie, ice cream magnate Tom Carvel, and LA’s car painting pitchman Earl Scheib.

And then there are the ads themselves.Continue reading...

brand news

Brands to Watch: AMC, Weinergate, Palin & more

Posted by Shirley Brady on June 6, 2011 06:00 PM

Brands to Watch

Apple's WWDC announcements seen as "huge win" for (more engaging?Twitter in a blow to Facebook

Anthony Weiner admits to sending lewd photos but refuses to resign, delighting headline writers everywhere.

Cablevision's AMC Networks (AMC, IFC, Sundance Channel, WE tv) are going public.

CFDA honors Lady Gaga with fashion icon award and Marc Jacobs with lifetime achievement nod.

Chanel supports National Resources Defense Council.

DHL sponsors Manchester United tour.

Disney's Anne Sweeney says it's the "right time" for ABC to get back into syndicated TV because of "right person" — Katie Couric.Continue reading...

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