branded entertainment

Branded Content Watch: Malibu, Allstate, Durex and more

Posted by Abe Sauer on June 20, 2014 05:20 PM

Dallas, Phoenix and Los Angeles users of Uber may get a surprise ride in the coming week. The ride-share app has partnered with the new Transformers film to make tractor trailer autobot Optimus Prime one of its available lifts. For the record, Uber has made Prime street legal.Continue reading...

World Cup Daily

Despite England's Early Exit, Nike is Still Dominating the World Cup

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 20, 2014 04:35 PM

The World Cup is barely over a week old, but it has already given the Super Bowl quite a kick. After one week, fans around the globe watched more than 1.2 billion minutes of World Cup ads on YouTube. That’s around four times more than they did for the much-ballyhooed Super Bowl ads that aired earlier this year. 

According to Google, on the first day of the Cup, fans watched 25.4 million views of World Cup ads, with the list dominated by Nike, which has three ads in the top 10.  

Nike may have tipped the scale in its favor thanks to its deep roster of soccer stars that appear in its “Risk Everything” campaign, a fact that must be making official Cup sponsor Adidas, which is attempting to protect its still-dominant football market share, feel a bit queasy.

The Nike-Adidas squabble has manifested elsewhere at the Cup as well. Adidas has The England National Team is sponsored by Nike, but England captain Steven Gerrard is an Adidas brand ambassador. Gerrard and his teammates, who just today were booted from the tournament, have been walking around the Cup wearing tons of Nike-branded gear with little England branding in sight, which Adidas isn't too happy about.Continue reading...

World Cup Daily

Beats Banned at the World Cup After Players Snub Sponsor Sony

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 18, 2014 06:49 PM

Before the World Cup got underway, Beats by Dre said it wasn’t aiming to be the ambush marketer it had been in previous events, like when it caused quite the stir at the 2012 London Olympics.  

But Beats couldn't stay out of the spotlight for long. Without much effort on its part, players from nearly every team at the Cup have been seen wearing the headphones in and around the World Cup venues, despite the fact that Sony, the official FIFA and World Cup sponsor, gifted all 736 players a set of its own high-tech headphones to wear whenever they pleased. This week, FIFA moved to actually ban Beats products from the field and at media events.

The move is similar to rumors that circulated during the Sochi Olympics about Samsung, the official sponsor, complaining that athletes were walking around displaying their Apple iPhones. Though Samsung denied that it demanded that the IOC's brand police make sure Apple logos were covered up, Olympic representatives were captured literally taping over Apple logos around the events.Continue reading...

brand trainwrecks

Delta Trying Too Hard (Or Not Enough?) On Social Media Leads to Giraffe Gaffe

Posted by Nate Bartell on June 17, 2014 06:34 PM

What began as one of millions of World Cup-related tweets turned into a brand basher for Delta, who was skewered on Monday for its well-intentioned but ill-informed tweet supporting the US men's national team win over Ghana. 

Instead of simply using the two countries’ flags, Delta chose to accompany the game score with two images that were meant to symbolize each nation. For the United States, the airline chose the Statue of Liberty; for Ghana, it chose a giraffe. The problem? There are no giraffes in Ghana.

The massive World Cup-watching community was quick to pick up on the post's mistake and general lack of good judgement.Continue reading...

World Cup Daily

Brazil May Be the Host, But World Cup Ad Effect is Felt Globally

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 16, 2014 04:03 PM

The World Cup isn’t just bringing consumer attention to one sporting event—it's bringing major dollars to ad markets across the globe.

Media buyer ZenithOptimedia said the World Cup will “add as much as $500 million to the Latin American ad market this year, a further $300 million in the US and $300 million in Western Europe,” according to the International Business Times. The Asia Pacific region, however, will only see $250 million in related ad spend since the time difference between Brazil and the region makes it hard for consumers to watch the tournament. 

"The World Cup will provide a big boost to television in June and July, but we expect its share of the global advertising market to begin to fall this year, after peaking in 2013," said ZenithOptimedia. "Television's global market share rose slowly but steadily for decades, increasing from 29.9 percent in 1980 to 39.6 percent in 2013. We now expect its share to erode to 39.4 percent in 2014 and 38.3 percent by 2016.” Television ad spend is expected to keep rising at an average of 4.4 percent a year to 2016, but internet advertising is growing at 16.2 percent annually.

But Lou Aversano, CEO of Ogilvy & Mather New York, told Bloomberg that the World Cup is a worthy risk for brands looking to use the platform for advertising, as this year's social activity around the Cup has already surpassed that of 2010 tournament.Continue reading...


Social, Sustainable Activism Takes the Field at the World Cup

Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 16, 2014 12:35 PM

As the World Cup continues in Brazil, Greenpeace has scored a major goal. 

Long-time FIFA sponsor adidas, which expects to generate $12.25 million in revenue from this year’s tournament, announced a partnership with bluesign technologies to better manage chemicals in its supply chain as well as committing to disclosing 99 percent of its China-based “wet processes” by the end of 2014.

Additionally, the brand has committed to 80 percent supply chain transparency by mid-2016, and full transparency by 2020 via its "IPE Detox platform."

"This announcement represents a major step towards the toxic-free future we need,” said Manfred Santen, Detox Campaigner at Greenpeace Germany, according to Fibre2Fashion. “This credible approach with achievable milestones shows adidas is back onside with Detox. This is a victory for adidas’ customers, for the local communities forced to live with toxic-water pollution and for our future generations. Global brands like adidas have the power and the responsibility to help us kick out these dangerous chemicals for good.”

Greenpeace pushed adidas on its “breach of promise” to provide non-toxic soccer apparel for the World Cup after testing found hazardous chemicals in 33 items including boots, goalkeeping gloves and balls from the brand, as well as those from Nike and Puma.Continue reading...

World Cup Daily

Protests Fail to Slow World Cup as Brands Press On with Promos

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 13, 2014 03:31 PM

Come hell or violent protests, nothing is stopping the World Cup train from running wild through Brazil. Thousands of protestors and police donning riot gear clashed in the streets of Sao Paulo in the ongoing battle over exorbitant spending on the major tournament by the Brazilian government and the millions being spent by brands sponsoring the event. 

Despite the shadow strewn across the World Cup, brands are rolling on with their elaborate and expensive campaigns, sponsors or not. Pepsi, whose rival Coke is the major beverage sponsor of the tournament, just released a new short film directed by Spike Lee featuring a World Cup-themed song from Kelly Rowland. The film is part of Pepsi’s Beats of the Beautiful Game project, which consists of a short films and a music album featuring stars like Janelle Monáe, Timbaland and the all-girl Brazilian funk band Pearls Negras.

In addition, Pepsi has teamed up with Dutch consumer electronics brand Band & Olufsen to release a limited-edition headphones as part of its soccer-themed Live for Now capsule collection. The headphones have street-art patterns on the underside with black, white or Pepsi blue on top, according to reading...

branded entertainment

Branded Content Watch: Dear Kittens of the World Cup

Posted by Abe Sauer on June 13, 2014 01:07 PM

After clocking five million views in four days, Buzzfeed's low-budget commercial for Purina has passed more than 10 million views in the week since it was posted on June 5th. Credit the faux Morgan Freeman narration and wit of web wag Ze Frank, who happens to be EVP of video for Buzzfeed. (Purina, meanwhile, is about to ramp up the amount of branded content on its Petcentric YouTube channel.) Watch "Dear Kitten" (again... and again) below, along with this week's other noteworthy branded content efforts:Continue reading...

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