May 30, 2006

Return of the Soap Opera... minus the soap!

C'mon P&G, you started the whole soap opera thing... you're missing the boat on this one.

There are a number of regressive developments which harken back to a charming time in television history... when a single sponsor underwrote an entire show. (Texaco Star Theatre anyone?)

Well, the model appears to be making a comeback. Here a few examples that have popped up recently:

1. Budweiser sponsors JibJab
A little birdy told me that the King of Beers is actually sponsoring the entirety of JibJab's output, though the visible sponsorship is tied to the "official download area of Real Men of Genius" tv spots. The humor of these spots is particularly in line with JibJab humor, so that works.

What's boggles the mind is how political JibJab is... does Uncle Bud ever call up and ask the boys to kindly remove an offensive cartoon, or is their overall sponsorship hidden and made to appear only alive in the official BUD area. Hmmm. If anyone has any insight on this... drop us a line.

2. Snapple buys entire ad inventory for 6 weeks at a couple of New England Radio Stations.
Dubbed "Brandcasting" Snapple's move allows them complete control over the message and presumably the content. Hey if you have the money and want to spend it this way, why not. I'm just not sure as a content provider, having a single sugar daddy is such a great thing... at least from an artistic integrity point of view... but then look at TV these days... integrity! HAH!

3. Bill Mahr's new AMAZON TV SHOW!!! (No really!)
This is the purest form of the form. Much like brandcasting pioneer BMW Films of ancient (circa 2000 A.D.) Web Days (BTW, you can no-longer download the films... WHAT ARE THEY THINKING??? Don't they realize there are sites like THIS out there?)

Will the Maher/Bezos power-duo find a balance between infommercial, ABC-style "you're fired" censorship and HBO's cuss-all-you-want, screw-the-networks attitude? My instinct is that it will pretend to be the latter, but play more like a "set it and forget it" half hour. Damn that chicken is juicy!

Will artists like Maher keep taking these deals if it DOESN'T allow them to speak their mind? Probably... they'll justify it as "shooting a commercial." It doesn't have to be good, or art... But then if it sucks, who's going to watch? We understand stars need to pay the bills, but these "shows" have a real opportunity to ruin a... REAL OPPORTUNITY!

Keep watching this space... first products in your movies, now movies in your products. WHEN WILL THE MADNESS END?????

May 26, 2006

Major "Huh?"

Have a look at the second story in today's
Adweek/IQ Briefing
entitled "Marketers Wary of Emerging Media"

Can I get a big ole collective "huh?" from the audience. Now how 'bout some groans.

Thanks for playing.

Here's a new thought (said from atop a soapbox constructed entirely of PDAs and hospital-thin cellphones): perhaps it should be a corporate obligation to embrace emerging media (if only to demonstrate to our consumers that we are willing to look at new ways of communicating and playing with them.

And while we're at it, why is "emerging media" only talked about from a digital perspective.
Perhaps a branded urinal cake (with appropriate messaging, of course) will be as surprising and delightful to the targeted consumer as seeing their favorite brand reduced to pixels.

C'mon marketers. Jump in. (or at least toe in)
Try it. You'll like it. And so will your consumers.

May 24, 2006

Airing their dirty laundry... the right way!

Unilever's ALL brand teamed up with Alcone Marketing Group to roll out their duds wrapped around a NYC bus with "Spot the Bus" sweepstakes. The campagin used consumers cell phones to record the bus' location and enter them into the sweeps.

An exciting promotion all in all, assuming you are standing upwind of the vehicle!

VIA: PROMO Article

May 14, 2006

Rolling Billboards, for cats!

Here's the ultimate job: Drive an RC car around a mall all day and get paid for it! Soon to be in the classified near you! Check out this post from the AdGang at MIT on mini-rolling Billborads. With MIT's swarmbot technology, imagine little herds of free roaming ad clusters. My inner media buyer is getting very confused.

via MIT Ad Lab

May 13, 2006

Team buying in China... let's play here!

Interesting article in the Christian Science Monitor points out a trend called Team Buying where groups meet online, fan out to a bunch of stores, find the best looking place, then flash mob/descend on the joint to negotiate a "Group Discount"

Hey if big corps get group discounts, why not flash mobs... they're there, with cash and ready to buy... what are you going to do shun them?