2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

brand inspiration

Wendy's Returns to Roots with Tagline, Dave Burger and the Real Wendy

Posted by Abe Sauer on October 3, 2011 05:50 PM

In January it will have been ten years since the passing of Wendy's founder Dave Thomas. Without him, Wendy's has gone back and forth in its campaigns, looking for the grounding and homey heritage that Thomas brought the brand.

Now Wendy's is reaching into its history to push a burger named after its well-liked pitch man. This campaign is a meal deal, served with a side of even more of its past. But going on its 12th quarter of flat or lower revenue at its restaurants, will the new sell of an old brand be enough to make the burger a hit?Continue reading...

auto motive

Ford Ad Knocking Bailouts Takes on a Life of Its Own; and a Final Goodbye to Doug

Posted by Dale Buss on September 29, 2011 07:01 PM

Ford has created a mini-tempest by pulling a TV ad (above) from its Drive One series in which a buyer of its F-150 truck credits the company for not accepting a federal bailout in 2009 when General Motors and Chrysler did. Or, looked at another way, the customer in the ad himself, Chris McDaniel, is creating the mini-tempest.

Detroit News columnist Daniel Howe began the row by suggesting that the ad, which was launched in early September, was pulled by Ford "after individuals inside the White House questioned whether the copy was publicly denigrating" the Obama administration's bailouts of Ford's chief rivals.

Ford spokeswoman Meghan Keck told brandchannel that there was "no pressure involved" in Ford's decision and that the spot featuring McDaniel was rotated on and off the air just like other ads in the series, which features real Ford customers answering "questions" at a staged press conference.

In the ad, McDaniel said that he "wasn't going to buy another car that was bailed out by our government. I was going to buy from a manufacturer that's standing on their own: win, lose or draw. That's what America is about."Continue reading...

brand mascots

RIP, Doug: Ford Sends Focus Spokespuppet Packing

Posted by Dale Buss on September 28, 2011 05:57 PM

It was only last week that we asked, "Has Ford's Focus Spokespuppet Doug Jumped the Shark?" Turns out, he has jumped ship entirely.

Ford has decided to shelve Doug, the orange spokespuppet for the Focus, after a six-month run that did wonders for consumer interest in the car, exceeding the company's initial expectations.

Brandchannel has learned that the denouement of Doug's story will be told on Thursday with the release of the last new video in a series of many.

Ford released the penultimate chapter today, a Doug-less video that featured only "John," the human handler for the smart-alecky mascot, bemoaning the departure of his friend after Doug drove off himself in a 2012 Focus.

"The video today tipped it off," Scott Monty, Ford's head of social media, told brandchannel. "Tomorrow we'll have the concluding video."Continue reading...

games people play

Angry Birds Live: The Legal, and Illegal, Versions

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 27, 2011 11:01 AM

If you’re sick of incessantly staring at your mobile while madly pushing buttons to virtually chuck wingless birds at pigs in various structures with giant slingshots, Angry Birds Live is here.

If you were lucky enough to be in Singapore over the weekend, you may have caught the debut of the Angry Birds live crowd game. Rovio, in partnership with Singapore telco SingTel, worked with Uplause Ltd. to turn 50,000 Formula 1 Grand Prix fans into live controllers in a gigantic game of Angry Birds.

The co-branded event (see shaky video footage here) was the first in an ongoing partnership between Rovio and Uplause that's coming to major events around the world. Rovio CMO Peter Vesterbacka commented, “We think this new form of gaming will give fans a great opportunity to form a strong emotional connection with the characters.”

And on the unlicensed live Angry Birds front, trust China to take this to a new level.Continue reading...

license to thrill

Hulk and Iron Man Agree: USC Rules!

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 23, 2011 10:01 AM

For readers of comic books, 2011 may go down as the year that big business figured out that it might be worth sticking its massive hand into an industry that’s been more aligned with outsiders than the mainstream.

Earlier this year we saw the introduction of big-brand product placement in comics when Nike’s logo appeared on a Marvel character’s T-shirt. Now Marvel has taken another step and struck a licensing deal with the University of Southern California to have its characters appear on gear alongside the university’s mascot and logo.Continue reading...

games people play

Angry Birds Fever Hits China Moon Festival, Wonderful Pistachios

Posted by Abe Sauer on September 13, 2011 11:58 AM

Can Angry Birds be stopped?

The mobile game that has reduced worker productivity in America by half (at least in my household) was already global, but now it's "glocalizing" as well to meet those new markets. For China's Autumn Festival, Rovio released a special "Moon Festival" theme for the game.Continue reading...

brand mascots

Should Progressive's Flo Win a Spot on Madison Avenue Walk of Fame?

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 13, 2011 10:06 AM

“Can Progressive's perky Flo make mincemeat out of the Jolly Green Giant? For that matter, can the Old Spice dude clean Mr. Clean's clock?” That’s the question being crowdsourced via social media to determine winners in the eighth annual online competition for the top two U.S. ad icons and slogans. 

Voting kicks off this week on event sponsor Buzzfeed.com, and runs through September 30.

The winners will be permanently installed on New York's Madison Avenue Advertising Walk of Fame, located between 42nd and 50th Streets and already adorned with the likes of Juan Valdez, Orville Redenbacher, Mr. Peanut, the M&Ms, Tony the Tiger and the Budweiser Clydesdales. 

Leveraging Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, 20 icons are in the running, but only two will be immortalized during Advertising Week 2011 in New York, October 3-7.

2011 icon contenders include General Mills' Jolly Green Giant, the Kia Hamsters, P&G's Mr. Clean, the Energizer Bunny, Old Spice Man (aka The Man Your Man Could Smell Like, or Isaiah Mustafa), and Flo, Progressive’s perky/pesky insurance clerk.

"It's the ultimate seal of approval from consumers," comments Matt Scheckner, executive director of sponsor Advertising Week, to USA Today. "This will become viral," he says, fully (and ambitiously) expecting at least one million consumers to vote.Continue reading...

campaign tactics

Keystone Light Mull(et)s Next Steps for Pervy Pitchman Keith Stone

Posted by Abe Sauer on September 12, 2011 10:08 AM

One part Old Spice Guy, one part that guy your parents told you to stay away from, Keystone Light spokesidiot "Keith Stone" is ineffably appealing. For over two years, Keith Stone has been reaping the breakfast of the kinds of champions who drink beer for breakfast, in the process winning a bit of a cult fanbase.

He's irreverent, but then so is audibly passing gas in polite company. The question is, does he work for the brand?

"In developing the Keith Stone campaign, we wanted to literally bring the brand’s 'Always Smooth' essence to life in a way that is impactful and relatable to our Keystone Light drinker. We did this through the creation of an ownable brand hero," Brand Manager Elina Vives told brandchannel, adding, "Keith Stone is the MC of Smoothness."Continue reading...

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