2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

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To Cell or Not -- While Dining Out

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 21, 2012 11:14 AM

The escalating battle over digital displays in public has reached new heights…or lows…depending on your position on personal freedom versus a modicum of civility. Between texting, tweeting and Instagram-ing restaurant meal photos, "distracted dining" is the latest scourge on the most basic of manners, the art of face-to-face conversation.

Eva Restaurant on Beverly Boulevard in Los Angeles is offering diners a five percent discount on their bill to check their tech at the door. "For us, it's really not about people disrupting other guests. Eva is home, and we want to create that environment of home, and we want people to connect again," said owner/chef Mark Gold. 

About half the customers at Eva, a 40-person restaurant with European nuance, take the discount. "I think once the server approaches the table and they're presented with the offer, they like the idea of actually talking to each other again," adds Gold.

Interested in wooing business in a challenging economy, and accommodating a younger, wired clientele, many restaurants now cater to diners who have morphed into "food paparazzi." Continue reading...

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Brands See Sept. 11 Anniversary as Opportunity

Posted by Abe Sauer on August 22, 2011 03:09 PM

With the tenth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks quickly approaching, a grab bag of brands and interests are rushing to leverage the event and the sentiment for a little self promotion.

And while the event has always been both a tender subject and an appealing promotional property, this year may see an increase in the volume, in both noise and amount, of 9/11. In fact, it may be so much that a person might need a drink… for which there is a 9/11 wine. Continue reading...

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Cartoon Characters Cause Preschoolers to Nag Parents for Unhealthy Food

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 18, 2011 04:05 PM

Everybody knows by now (or should) that there is an obesity epidemic in America, particularly among children. And a good chunk of the blame can go to the wide availability of high-sugar, high-calorie, low nutritional value food.

But how do those products continue to sustain themselves? How do such things keep being selected from grocery-store shelves in a culture that constantly congratulates itself on putting our kids first! After all, they’re our future, right?

A new study from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health lays some blame on the nagging abilities of American 3- to 5-year-olds, according to USA Today.Continue reading...

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Brands Brace for Impact of Higher Gas Prices

Posted by Dale Buss on February 23, 2011 04:00 PM

Forget new products, social-media marketing and sustainability initiatives – the biggest thing on the plate of many brands today may be how to cope with spiking oil prices.

Brandmeisters know better than most that nothing can play mind and pocketbook games with the American consumer quite as devastatingly as gasoline-price hikes. In 2008, a brief movement up through the $4-a-gallon level stalled auto sales and then led into the global economic meltdown.

“Higher gas prices in general will depress sales no matter what, because people will be worse off,” Sean McAlinden, chief economist of the Center for Automotive Research, told brandchannel.

“And in terms of people collectively feeling happy or unhappy, or measurements of how the American people feel about whether the country is on the right track or wrong track — the biggest measurements of those things are made at the gas pump.”Continue reading...

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Smirnoff Needs to Ice "Icing Bros"

Posted by Abe Sauer on May 21, 2010 02:59 PM

Oh dear, what is happening to Smirnoff? No sooner do we post our weekly look at brand "huh?"s when we come across this item. The Smirnoff brand currently finds itself in the unenviable position of being the select beverage of an underground game called "Icing Bros." The viral activity consists of a person presenting a friend ("bro") with a Smirnoff Ice which said bro must, then and there on the spot no matter what, take on bended knee and chug the whole bottle. But, if that friend himself is carrying a Smirnoff Ice, then the original presenter must chug both "Ices." Seriously, we're not making this up.Continue reading...

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Double Standard for Plus-Size Brand

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 23, 2010 11:04 AM

Lane Bryant just launched a campaign for Cacique, its line of sexy lingerie billed as “so not what Mom would wear.” Its first spot (above) was set to air during Dancing with the Stars this week, but was pulled by ABC at the eleventh hour.

The Disney-owned network said it showed too much cleavage, an insider at Lane Bryant told the New York Post: "The cleavage of the plus-size models, they said, was excessive, and we don't think that's the case. It certainly appears to be discrimination against full-sized women."

ABC was joined by Fox in a boycott of the ad on American Idol, ostensibly for the same excessive cleavage reason.

Apparently, however, Fox had no problems airing Victoria's Secret ads featuring rail-thin models such as Miranda Kerr, as Lane Bryant fumed on its official blog.Continue reading...

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Mismanaged Brand Goes To The Birds

Posted by Abe Sauer on March 29, 2010 11:20 AM

From South Dakota comes an unlikely branding lesson about doing right by your most loyal fans and customers.

The Sioux Falls' minor league baseball team, the Canaries, recently came under new ownership that instituted a number of changes – most notably a name change for the team. The team was recast as a more "fearsome" brand, the Fighting Pheasants.

However, the old management of the Canaries team offered free, lifetime season tickets to any fans who got a tattoo of the teams mascot, a canary, on their body. And some of them did. But, in the wake of the rebrand, the new proprietors decided that the tattoo/ticket deal was no longer valid and did not apply to the Fighting Pheasants.

And that posed a problem for both the brand and its fans.Continue reading...

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Is Apple Defending Its Brand Into The Ground?

Posted by Abe Sauer on March 15, 2010 06:37 PM

Last October, we reported on a brewing Apple trademark battle in Australia. Apple was suing Woolworth, an Australian supermarket, over its use of an apple for its brand logo. Apple claimed the logo would compete for market share and create confusion in the minds of consumers.

Well, it seems Apple's trademark adventures Down Under continue. In a new ruling, the tech giant has been told that it has no exclusive use of its vaunted "i" prefix. More than just another trademark lawsuit loss, reports of questionable legal action on Apple's part is beginning to pile up and the brand that "thinks different" is beginning to look a lot like...*gasp*... 1990s Microsoft. Continue reading...

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