2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

brands under fire

MLB's Brewers, Yankees Ready to Face Brushback Over PED-Using Players

Posted by Dale Buss on February 28, 2014 02:47 PM

It felt good for Ryan Braun to sock a home run in his first at-bat of spring training games for the MLB's Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday. But it was the former National League MVP's first dinger in any Major League Baseball game in 9 months, so it also was a reminder of how far Braun and his personal brand still have to go in their efforts at redemption from the PED scandal he got tangled up in last year. 

The highest-profile participant in the growing scandal, of course, is Alex Rodriguez. The MLB has passed down an unprecedented 211-game suspension—then entire 2014 season—an action A-Rod appealed with several lawsuits (that were recently dropped) in his efforts to retain some semblance of dignity as one of the reigning biggest stars for one of the premier teams in pro sports, the New York Yankees. Fellow (unblemished) Yankees star Derek Jeter intends to retire after this year.

Another big star who's been whacked by his PED use is Nelson Cruz. The free-agent outfielder formerly of the Texas Rangers has signed a one-year, $8 million contract with the Baltimore Orioles after he served a 50-game suspension last year—a decision that has come under criticism from baseball purists.Continue reading...

sporting brands

Amid Ongoing Scandals, MLB Stands to Lose Best Brand Ambassador in Jeter

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 13, 2014 07:10 PM

In a move that was bound to come, but surprising nonetheless, the New York Yankees' Derek Jeter announced he will be retiring after the 2014 baseball season. The all-star shortstop took to his Facebook yesterday to post a lengthy note to fans, telling them that he "could not be more sure" that the time is right. 

The announcement, a heartbreaking one for fans, may be even more disappointing for Major League Baseball. The League has been plagued by a persistent PR problem surrounding the use of performance-enhancing drugs by players, spoiling the careers of a number of star sportsmen and tarnishing the reputations of clubs and the league overall. But Derek Jeter wasn't one of them. In fact, he was the farthest thing from the MLB's problems—an ambassador to the masses that represented not just legendary athleticism, but poise in the face of constant media spotlight. 

It's an impressive feat for a man whose career was partially played alongside one of the League's latest and biggest foes—Alex Rodriguez. The Yankees third baseman, who has been embroiled in his own PED scandal for the last year or so, will not take the field in 2014 as part of a related suspension. And while the pair were on-field buddies and two of the most sought-after players in the League, Jeter never got mixed up with A-Rod's dealings.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Microsoft, Google, Apple and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 27, 2014 09:14 AM

In the News

Microsoft posts record sales as Ballmer prepares exit; competes with Amazon on cloud storage prices; admits to Syrian Electric Army email breach; and releases global study on power of technology.

Google pushes back against data localization, faces protest in San Francisco, buys artificial intelligence startup DeepMind and announces global patent agreement with Samsung.

Apple reportedly eyes mobile payments service, as hopes are high for Q1 earnings release on Monday.

AIG says it’s on offense as corp rep restored.

AT&T quashes rumors of Vodafone bid.

Accenture tries to grab STEM graduates early.

Ally Financial readies pre-IPO roadshow.Continue reading...

sporting brands

Yankees Bid Farewell to One of Sport's Greatest Brands

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 27, 2013 01:08 PM

Failing to make a playoff bid, the New York Yankees will head into the offseason to ponder a question it hasn't had to think twice about in nearly 17 years: Who will be the closer? On Thursday night, the team, along with a sell-out crowd, bid farewell to legendary pitcher Mariano Rivera, who, after spending the entirety of his career with the famed organization, pitched his last inning at home in the Bronx. 

In 19 seasons, Rivera has earned more saves than any pitcher in MLB history, has pitched 141 postseason innings in which he only gave up 11 runs, and earned five World Series championships. He is the greatest closer who ever lived, and the Yankees and Major League Baseball have done their part to make sure he will be remembered as such.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: P&G, Chobani, Walt Disney and more

Posted by Dale Buss on July 12, 2013 09:12 AM

In the News

P&G changes Tide Pods packaging to look less like candy.

Chobani lures Kellogg exec to run day-to-day operations.

Walt Disney says transactional wristbands raise sales at Disney World.

ABC sees The View retain vital role in daytime TV.

AT&T pitches Mariano Rivera promo to Yankees fans.

BP blanches at bill for Gulf cleanup.

DDB Chicago CEO heads to Chobani for chief marketing role. 

Dell eyes more R&D as key to revival while Carl Icahn says he'll sweeten his offer for company.

GM seen not adding to ownership in Peugeot.Continue reading...

damage control

Nike Pulls “Boston Massacre” Shirts Intended for Yankee Rivalry in Bombing Aftermath

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 22, 2013 11:41 AM

The folks at Nike are happy to pull in the bucks—$24.1 billion in the last fiscal year—thanks to the globe’s obsession with sports, but there is one product that the company isn’t interested in profiting from (at least for the time being).

Nike shirts marketed to New York Yankees fans with the phrase “Boston Massacre” emblazoned on them have been pulled from the market, according to ESPN’s Darren Rovell. Obviously, the shirts took on an unfortunate meaning in the wake of the bombing at last Monday’s Boston Marathon that left three dead and more than 150 wounded, some critically.Continue reading...

news you can booze

Craft Beer Fans Fight Back Against Big Beer Brews

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 15, 2013 04:04 PM

Everyone wants a piece of the craft beer industry, from big beer brands to major league ball clubs. But these days, it's getting harder and harder to tell a true craft brew from ones just made to look the part. 

The most recent faux-craft siting occured at Yankee Stadium, where a vendor operating as "Craft Brew Destination" was in fact selling "craft" beers made by MillerCoors. Blogger Amanda Rykoff sounded off about the misinformation, noting MillerCoors beers (whether they're labeled craft or not) don't exactly fit into the Brewers Association’s definition of a craft brewer, which limits production to six million barrels or less and demands independent ownership. As NPR notes, the Yankees have been shamed into renaming the stand Beer Mixology Destination, a collection of words that mean pretty much nothing other than “Beer Here!”Continue reading...

celebrity brandcasting

Jay-Z Expands Brand, Adding "Sports Agent" Title With CAA and Yankee Coup

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 3, 2013 02:04 PM

Jay-Z has sold about 50 million albums, won 17 Grammys, is worth almost $500 million and can well afford his own "gentlemen's club" and nightclub, is the co-creator of the Rocawear fashion line, a part-owner of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets and the Barclays Center stadium in Brooklyn, and happens to be married to Beyonce and the father of Blue Ivy Carter. 

So while he may be busier than your average Roca-a-fella, he's also making time for a brand new endeavor to stretch his business clout: becoming a sports agent.

The big news this week—via well-placed media clips in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times—is that Jay is opening his own sports agency, snagging New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano away from the sport’s best-known and most-feared agent, Scott Boras, to be his first client.

Cano is in the final year of his current contract with the Yanks so whoever negotiates his next one, which will likely be worth more than $200 million, will be reeling in a whole lot of dough. It’s looking like the man who'll be hauling it is in none other than Hova himself.Continue reading...

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