2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

video killed the _____ star

Amazon Forges Ahead with Streaming Initiatives as Retail Quietly Builds

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 21, 2014 05:33 PM

Netflix may be grabbing the headlines lately, but Amazon has been hard at work building up its streaming arsenal and now presents a bigger threat than ever to competing brands. 

To the joy of advertisers, Amazon has started to include preroll ads ahead of its original series pilots, starting with a campaign from Geico. 

“The move combines two of advertisers' biggest wishes—premium content and a measurable audience—on a service that venture capitalist Mark Suster once called 'the biggest threat to YouTube,'" Ad Age notes.  

Geico, the presenting sponsor for Amazon's pilot season is running banners on program landing pages as well as 15-second repurposed television spots at the start of non-kids series including The After. Amazon users can choose which pilots they'd like to see green-lighted for future Prime Instant Video. Geico's pilot sponsorship also includes placements on Amazon.com, the Kindle Fire "wake" screen and movie site IMDb.com.

"We're testing and learning,” said Lisa Utzschneider, Amazon VP-Global Ad Sales. “It's early days, and we're looking at all different video formats. We're focused on creating a great experience for our customers."Continue reading...

week in review

Top 10 Stories of the week: From Pharrell to Sochi and more

Posted by Michael Waltzer on February 21, 2014 04:30 PM

Our most-read blog posts of the week:

#1 Pharrell Transitions to Designer with Launch of Recycled Plastic Denim Line

#2 Cadillac's New Campaign for ELR is an Ode to American Innovation

#3 Heineken Off to a Rough 2014 as New Campaign is Banned in the UK

#4 Lululemon Tried to Ban Customers from Reselling Clothes, Because That's Going to Go Over Well

#5 The Re-Hire: BMW Brings Back Trailblazing Series of Web Films

#6 IKEA's Sustainable Initiatives Are Paying Off for the Retailer and the World

#7 Calvin Klein Asks Fans to Snap Selfies in Their Skivvies for #MyCalvins Campaign

#8 Lamborghini Debuts 202-mph Huracan and Hints At... a Lambo SUV?

#9 Snowboard Brands Get Big Exposure at Sochi, But Are They Breaking the Rules?

#10 GE Teams Up With The Tonight Show to Make Science Cool

car talk

Honda, BMW Seek Advantages in Crucial Car Retailing Experience

Posted by Dale Buss on February 21, 2014 03:48 PM


Just like in traditional retail environments, what happens in the auto showroom is becoming of increasing importance to automakers these days. Customer experience is one of the last bastions for differentiation in a US auto market that seems to be slowing a bit from its fantastic boom—without any letup in competition.

Honda certainly believes this. That's why the brand is crowing this week that it's America's No. 1 brand in retail purchases by US car shoppers. Four key Honda models—including the nation's second-best-selling car, the Honda Accord, were also top hits with individual buyers in Honda's conclusions based on new data from Polk/IHS, according to USA Today.

Retail transactions matter in the auto business because so many sales, especially by the Detroit Three, are to corporate fleets such as rental-car agencies. Such sales tend to bring lower profits than individual retail purchases, and the desire of car buyers to go to a dealer showroom and purchase a vehicle is a meaningful endorsement of the product and the brand.Continue reading...

ad watch

Liberty Mutual Has Its Sochi Real-Time Moment with Social-Powered Ad

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 21, 2014 02:53 PM

In an almost-Oreo moment, Liberty Mutual Insurance created an Olympics-themed TV spot on-the-fly based on a breaking news event.

When Team USA moguls skier Heidi Kloser crashed on Feb. 6, breaking her femur and tearing knee ligaments just prior to the opening ceremony of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, she reportedly asked her parents while en route to the hospital if she was still an Olympian.

Having seen Liberty Mutual’s “Rise” campaign during NBC coverage of the Olympic Winter Games, ad veteran Alex Bogusky tweeted Liberty Mutual about using Kloser’s story in their ongoing campaign featuring past Olympic athletes who overcame personal setbacks to go on to triumphs.

“We saw that tweet and it was essentially the catalyst for the ad,” said Jenna Lebel, marketing director for Liberty Mutual. “I think it’s really important as a Team USA sponsor to have that real-time, always-on presence from a community management standpoint.” And Liberty Mutual was no doubt at the ready to take-up the suggestion from Bogusky.Continue reading...

media brands

Time Inc., MLB, NHL and More Throw Support Behind New 120 Sports Network

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 21, 2014 01:44 PM

ESPN may consider itself the “World Wide Leader in Sports,” but Sports Illustrated’s owner, Time Inc., and a few major sports leagues are looking to take a big piece of its action with a big investment in online sports network startup, 120 Sports.

Online video is growing exponentially, Time Inc. will join Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association, the National Hockey League, NASCAR, and college sports conferences to create content for the network that will “include content such as game highlights and commentary in two-minute segments,” according to the Wall Street Journal. No live games will be featured.

The NFL is not currently part of the 120 Sports package since it announced last month that it will have its own online video app, NFL Now, “that will tailor programming according to each user's interests, part of an independent effort by the league to extend its reach on digital platforms,” the Journal reports.

The 120 Sports site will launch later in the spring and have its own app, but the content may also appear on third-party sites. It won’t require viewers to authenticate their cable providers, such as how NBC won't allow online viewers to watch live streams of Olympics coverage without entering such information.Continue reading...


The Week in China: Netflix Binge Watching Spreads, Artist Sees Act Come Full Circle and more

Posted by Abe Sauer on February 21, 2014 12:26 PM

China is the second largest economy in the world and every significant brand's future is impacted by its growth (or collapse)—but who's got the time?! Here's the week's reads that will make you look like a keen China observer in case you find yourself immersed in a cultural conversation.

This week: House of Cards in China… Ai Weiwei's vase… Heineken… Hengda soccer's sponsorship windfall… Xiaomi… medical tourism and South Korea... WeChat mobile payments… 3M… Disneylands... gold fever... China loves olive oil... Sam's Club… Uniqlo and H&M… Airbus... GM... Furia... KFC's soy milk problem... and more.Continue reading...

chew on this

Kraft Propelled by Protein, All-Natural Trends Post Mondelez Split

Posted by Dale Buss on February 21, 2014 12:07 PM

Less than two years after Kraft Foods and Mondelez International split, the separation is beginning to work out for Kraft as it was designed: The company is finding ways to goose growth with the stable of traditional US grocery brands that comprise the new company.

Kraft's improved performance over this period is more evident in higher profit margins, while its revenues have only ticked up a bit. But what excites Kraft executives and investors is that CEO Tony Vernon is finding ways to make new, potentially more profitable propositions out of more products under venerable brands such as Oscar Mayer, Velveeta, Philadelphia, Maxwell House and Planters.

And Vernon is doing it in a way that tacks directly with the sea change in the CPG business toward better-for-you foods, beverages and ingredients.Continue reading...

cause marketing

7UP Tries Cause Marketing with Project 7, but Is It Pepsi Refresh Déjà Vu?

Posted by Dale Buss on February 21, 2014 10:52 AM

Clearly there are more than seven crying needs of people around the world. But Project 7 is trying to at at least skim the surface. And now 7UP is helping the company do just that through a new and unique bottle-cap promotion.

Purchasers of specially marked 20-ounce bottles of 7UP in the US will be able to find a unique code under the bottle cap, login online and select one of the seven areas of need to which they'd like their donation to go: "Feed the Hungry, Heal the Sick, Hope for Peace, House the Homeless, Quench the Thirsty, Teach them Well and Save the Earth," as Project 7 describes them.

"This approach gives the consumer an opportunity to pick an area of need," David Falk, vice president of marketing for Dr Pepper Snapple Group, told brandchannel. "And that's one thing we truly loved—giving the consumer the power to choose."Continue reading...

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