Endorsements and brand franchise 

Endorsement -An announcement or backing for something or somebody. Support for the most part interprets into endorsement of a legitimate report, action, occasion or item. General standards and criteria: Events and exercises supported or supported by must consent to and improve’s mission, vision, and objectives. Substances asking for endorsement must exhibit how their reports, exercises, occasions, and/or items will do as such. Endorsement is significant and generally limited to applications from Chapters, individuals, Special Interest Groups , different gatherings of individuals, torment leagues or other territorial Chapter groupings), or different bodies built up by won't embrace any action or item bolstered exclusively by industry or business interests. Clinical rules and educational module are tended to in the Governance Manual and are not secured by these rules will acknowledge no budgetary or legitimate duty regarding a supported movement or item that is not created without anyone else. Composed concurrences with substances, and leagues wanting to utilize’s logo and/or support must exist and incorporate a hold-innocuous provision to ensure (Such understandings can be as basic as an email responsibility.) logo and support may just be utilized with communicated composed authorization, which will give at its sole watchfulness and as per these standards and necessities. The logo and other must be included conspicuously and neatly. A brief report must be submitted to the office that depicts any embraced occasion. The report might be distributed in full or to some extent in an production and ought to incorporate data on participation/cooperation and any accessible evaluative data. Specific standards and techniques:

 

1.Who Can Request Endorsement: A Chapter on favorable terms, Special Interest Group on favorable terms, part or gathering of individuals, organization or body or sister society or in which has been included as an accomplice or has a common interest. 2What Can Endorsed: a session, address, or workshop at another affiliation's meeting, on the off chance that it is arranged together or by agents; or a production, site, position articulation, or exploration arrangement, in the event that it reflects 's interests and is  industry-delivered. (Such endorsements apply to single occasions or activities; supports would should be asked for consequent or rehashed occasions or activities.) 3.How Will Assess Requests for Endorsements: For non- - related exercises or items, staff will audit demands submitted by means of email. Along these lines, the Executive Committee might be requested that vote whether to give an support. No vote will be required for endorsement of alliance meeting. - pain.org); such demands must address the greater part of the accompanying: The name and depiction of the substance looking for endorsement or logo use The name and depiction of the report, movement, occasion, and/or item Who has been included in building up the experimental or instructive substance (with attribution and connection and list of sources, if applicable) A depiction of the connection of the report, movement, occasion, or item to 's vision, mission, and objectives Conferred or pending wellsprings of bolster, including the dollar (U.S.) measure of any industry support and the aggregate spending plan, taking note of rates (real to date and assessed) if budgetary backing is asked Whether the occasion or movement is one-time, consistent (e.g., yearly, half-yearly), and whether has embraced it already, and if so when Such materials as exist to date about the occasion (added as a connection to the structure) Present or arranged showcasing materials, systems, and arrangements demonstrating where endorsement would be passed on (e.g., site, email, post office based mail, pamphlet, timetable posting, online networking) and a case of how and where the support and logo would be highlighted The date of the occasion, action, or distribution and the due date for to choose whether to support or allow authorization for logo use The likelihood of an enrollment exceptional offer, rebate, and/or income partaking in connection to the proposed action, occasion, or item The names of different endorsers or supporters A sign of whether information will be gathered to assess the achievement of the proposed action, occasion, or item and assuming this is the case, when information will be accessible .


Adweek : Advertising & Branding

The World's Rudest, Most Passive-Aggressive Billboard Coughs at Nearby Smokers

If anything is going to convince a smoker to quit, it's a judgmental, passive-aggressive, coughing billboard. At least, that's the ostensible premise of a new campaign from Swedish pharmacy Apoteket Hjärtat and agency Åkestam Holst.

The digital poster uses outdoor smoke detectors to identify any nearby smokers and shame them by sending the man on the screen into a hacking fit, according to a case study video promoting the ad.

It then displays a series of nicotine patches and other kick-the-habit products, because obviously, the smoker is going to be most receptive to a pitch right after having his or her moment of self-destructive indulgence interrupted by a virtual asshole. To be fair, the campaign's heart is in the right place—sort of.

It's nice that it wants to help people be healthier. But it also clearly wants to garner attention for itself, and sell its wares—this is not a PSA. And there are a number of problems with this sort of approach.

First, most smokers these days know that smoking is bad for them, and they choose to do it anyway. Second, advertising is a generally intrusive medium to begin with. Being deliberately more intrusive—nagging adults for their unhealthy choices—doesn't do the brand any favors.

Sure, it's a bit clever. (This is the same client-agency team that made the subway ad with the model whose hair blew around whenever a train arrived.) But if the ad were a real person coughing at strangers on the street—and if its first victim's stink-eye reaction is any indication—it'd be at risk of starting a fist fight.

All oh which suggests that the campaign's actual target isn't the smokers themselves, but everybody else who thinks smokers are gross to begin with. Which might actually be a reasonable strategy.

Smoking is already banned in Swedish bars, restaurants and malls—a recent government investigation suggested the country should also prohibit lighting up at outdoor public spaces like bus stops, playgrounds, and cafes. In a country where healthcare costs are largely footed by taxpayers, it's not unreasonable to argue that an expensive, illness inducing habit should be legally hindered if not outright eliminated.

But that's not exactly the tack being taken here, or a very laissez-faire, live-and-let-live approach to the market, which leaves the whole thing feeling somewhat disingenuous—even if the people blowing smoke in the face of innocent passersby are inconsiderate, too.

In other words, when everyone is a dick, it's not really clear who comes out ahead. CREDITS Client: Pharmacy "Apoteket Hjärtat" Agency: Åkestam Holst / Sweden Media Agency: Clear Channel

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

How CNN's Branded-Content Studio and Modelo Celebrated Diversity in the American Heartland

At their best, marketing campaigns define a brand, inspire consumers and, yes, sell things. But sometimes, they become so much more than that—like a reflection of who we really are, for better or worse.

The Mexican beer brand Modelo had dramatically grown its business in the U.S. over the last few decades and sought to drive brand awareness while telling the story of a community here that had come together despite its differences during a time of much-publicized racial and cultural division.

The place that was chosen to spotlight: Garden City, Kan., population 30,000, a town where more than a dozen languages are spoken, where diversity is seen as a strength and that "represents the best vision for the future of America."

The resulting campaign, "Fighting for Better," was a five-part web series, produced by CNN's branded-content arm Courageous Studio and featured under its Great Big Story video network. Modelo's creative agency, Ogilvy & Mather Chicago, came up with the idea for the campaign, while media shop Horizon Media connected Modelo and Ogilvy with Great Big Story.

To create the series, members of the Courageous team spent a month in Garden City, getting to know its residents, digging for stories that fit with Modelo's message. The summer was spent producing the series, which launched in September.

"Modelo has been fighting for better since 1925, growing from a little beer in Tacuba, Mexico City, to become the fastest-growing beer in America," says Ann Legan, vp, brand marketing for Modelo. "As a result, we proudly believe it doesn't matter where you come from; it matters what you're made of. Nowhere is that more true than in Garden City, a diverse place of people fighting for better, too. We wanted to celebrate the shared values between the brand and the people of Garden City and show how with a fighting spirit and the desire to persevere through adversity, great things can happen."

"One of the things [Modelo] wanted to do was, looking at the divisive conversations, something that was completely the opposite," says David Spiegel, svp of sales and brand strategy for Great Big Story. "Where the world around them was zigging, how could they zag?"

The series underscores how, no matter where we come from, we all want the same basic things. One installment, titled "Where Cowboys Are More Than Herdsman," featured two men—one Mexican, one American—sharing stories of how they moved to Garden City for more opportunity, learning after they got there that "a united world is better for everyone."

The results of the campaign went far beyond the expectations of Modelo, which had hoped for at least 1 million views. To date, the series has been seen 4.6 million times and inspired 50,000 social engagements.

But as it turned out, that wasn't the end of the story of Garden City, or Modelo's connection to it. In October, the town would find itself at the center of a major news story when the FBI revealed it had foiled a terrorist plot to bomb an apartment building that's home to many Somali immigrants and a mosque featured in the series.

Modelo and the Courageous team knew they had to address an event that affected a group of people they had come to know so well. "What we thought of was that we're not going to merchandise the news, but we have to be aware," explains Spiegel.

So, a sixth video was created by Courageous as a tribute to the people of Garden City—a moving and inspiring two-minute piece urging perseverance.

Ultimately, "Fight for Better" demonstrated how Modelo and its customers were both "built from the fighting spirit," says Legan. "To truly extend that emotion and brand equity in an authentic way, we knew we couldn't just talk about the fighting spirit. We needed to actually show and celebrate the people who were living it."

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Our First Arc Awards Winners Represent the Best in Branded Storytelling

Great storytelling is no longer the sole reserve of David Lean or Shonda Rhimes. Yes, advertisers, whose more traditional forms of marketing interrupt our favorite content, have expanded their horizons far beyond the much-maligned 30-second TV spot, creating branded content of grander proportions that are increasingly data-informed. Adweek’s inaugural Arc Awards, produced in partnership with FPT Media, honors the best work out there, across nearly two dozen categories. On Jan. 21, we will celebrate all our winners in concert with the [email protected] event in Deer Valley, Utah, held during the Sundance Film Festival. There, we will also announce the winner of our Grand Arc Award. Suffice it to say, we have high expectations that the industry will continue to raise the creative bar on branded storytelling with each passing year. We will be there, along with our Arc Awards jury, to celebrate it.

Special thanks to our stellar Adweek Arc Awards jury, especially chairperson Shannon Pruitt, president of Dentsu Aegis Network’s The Story Lab U.S., who helped guide the process. Pruitt’s fellow jurors include: • Lou Arbetter, general manager of PepsiCo Creators League Studio • Tom Bannister, founder of SXM • Otto Bell, vp and group creative director, CNN Curageous Studio • Ty Braswell, creative digital strategist, JASH Comedy • Ricky Ray Butler, svp of digital, BEN • Nick Childs, CCO of Initiative • Jeremy Chilnick, COO and partner, Warrior Poets • Geoff Cottrill, president, MullenLowe U.S. • Hillary Frey, co-CCO, Matter Studios • Lewis Henderson, CEO, Entertainment, The Marketing Arm • Stephanie Horbaczewski, CEO, StyleHaul • David Lang, chief content officer, Mindshare N.A. • Rupert Maconick, founder and executive producer, Saville Productions • Stacy Minero, director, content planning and creative agencies, Twitter • Burke Morley, head of creative and content, Sonic • Kelly Mullen, global director, U-Entertainment, Unilever • Morgan Neville, documentary director, Saville Productions • Marcus Peterzell, evp of entertainment and head of Ketchum Sounds, Ketchum Sports & Entertainment • Emmanuel Seugé, founder, Cassius • Steve Stone, ECD and chairman, Heat • Kaaren Whitney-Vernon, CEO, Shift2 • Jason Zada, film director

Also, make sure to take a look at four in-depth profiles of these Arc Award winners:  • Winner of Best Nonfiction Series (Digital): CNN Courageous' "Fight for Better" work on behalf of Modelo, by Kristina Monllos; • Winner of Best Use of Short-Form Fiction (Film): BBDO New York's "Judo Kid" effort for client American Family Insurance, by Sami Main; • Winner of Best Sponsored Content: Forsman & Bodenfors' "Look Who's Driving" stunt for Volvo Trucks, by Christine Birkner; • And Winner of Best Charity/Pro Bono/Pro-Social Effort: The Martin Agency's "World's Biggest Asshole" PSA for Donate Life, by Tony Case.

Finally, it needs to be noted there were no winners in the following categories:  • Best Use of Long-form Fiction (Digital) • Best Use of Long-form Fiction (Film) • Best Use of Fiction Series (Film) • Best Use of Long-form Fiction (TV) • Best Use of Short-form Fiction (TV) • Best Use of Long-form Nonfiction (Digital) • Best Use of Short-form NonFiction (TV) • Best NonFiction Series (TV)

—Michael Bürgi

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Volvo Won Its Adweek Arc Award by Letting a 4-Year-Old Drive One of Its Trucks

The Volvo FMX 18-ton construction truck bills itself as "built for the toughest working conditions on earth." Volvo Trucks and agency Forsman & Bodenfors set out to prove that claim in a unique and effective way: by letting an adorable and fearless 4-year-old girl take it for a test drive.

The film, "Look Who's Driving," which launched in December 2015, puts bespectacled kid Sophie at the proverbial wheel, driving the truck through a construction site using a remote control device.

As Volvo's testers look on, Sophie excitedly pilots the vehicle through mini-explosions, a water-filled trench and other obstacles. At one point, the truck tumbles over a ravine before it safely turns right side up and keeps going. It then crashes through a house, again emerging unscathed. The video ends with Sophie doing what a lot of kids—and grown-ups—in her position would no doubt like to do: spinning out a giant doughnut.

The video succeeds not only in that it is wildly captivating, but also in that it meets the client's objective. It demonstrates the truck's new features—automatic traction control, advanced steering, rear suspension— while showing off how it can perform under the most demanding driving conditions.

"It's entertaining while showcasing the advantages of these features on the truck," explains Fredrik Klevenfeldt, director of PR and social media at Volvo Trucks. "The thing is to always have something unexpected. And having a little girl drive the truck remotely really gets your attention. There's a little kid driving a truck, but at the same time, there's a serious message about the truck."

Adds Björn Engström, creative executive at Forsman & Bodenfors: "In the construction segment, you need a really sturdy, robust truck, and we wanted to test it. The truck rolls over, can turn sharp corners, and the skid plates underneath are made of high-grade steel­—everything that makes it tough and durable and sturdy. We showed all of that in the film, and Sophie really enjoyed driving the truck."

The decision to cast a girl driving a heavy-duty vehicle was not deliberate. Explains Engström: "It's cool that it's a small girl driving. It could've been a boy as well—we had a lot of kids auditioning, and she was the best. She was really great, so we decided to go [with] her."

The campaign also made wise use of Volvo's limited budget. Without significant dollars devoted to traditional media, the agency sought to get traction for the spot through social media, YouTube and PR, both in traditional and specialty trucking media. The strategy carried its load admirably, with the video racking up 25 million views on YouTube and Facebook and 1,000 total media impressions.

The video helped expose the product to a mainstream audience while also driving Volvo Trucks' core customers to the brand's site, where they could find more detailed videos about the model's technical capabilities.

"We got more than a half a million views on those videos after this, so it showed that we reached people who are really interested in trucks and are into the details," Engström notes. "There are millions of truck drivers around the world. We wanted to reach the influencers and a broader audience, too, that would say, 'Hey, did you see this cool thing on YouTube?' We reached a lot of truck drivers as well as influencers."

Adds Klevenfeldt: "The engagement we got shows that we got the message about the features across. It was a door opener for salespeople."

"Look Who's Driving" marks the reboot of Volvo Trucks' "Live Test Series," which evolved following the agency's assessment that it is a challenge to reach truck drivers by way of traditional advertising—so producing creative with a shot at going viral is the better tactic.

To help ensure it would get pickup, it was important to create videos that both inform and entertain. The series includes a 2014 video, "Epic Split," that featured Jean-Claude Van Damme straddling two moving Volvo 18-ton trucks to demonstrate the stability and precision of the vehicles' steering capabilities.

Another video in the series, "The Hamster," features one of the furry pets steering a truck from the bottom to the top of a quarry to demonstrate its steering prowess.

The series has won awards from Cannes Lions, D&AD and The One Show.

"Look Who's Driving" followed in the same tracks, securing wins at Cannes Lions and The One Show.

The video series ties nicely into Volvo's strategy of approachability, Klevenfeldt says.

"We try to use accessible language, not just talk to experts or someone who knows a lot about trucks," he explains. "It strikes the balance of being entertaining for a broad audience but still relevant to our core audience."

"Volvo is known to be a human brand—it's down-to-earth, human and friendly," adds Engström. "Tapping into pop culture a little bit is really effective. It's easy to be a little dull if you want to show the robustness of a truck, but this gives it a human touch."

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

How Agencies Are Shifting Strategies to Compete With Accenture and Deloitte

This past year had consultancies rushing to get into the ad business, with Accenture acquiring London-based Karmarama, Deloitte snagging Heat in San Francisco and Epsilon winning the Del Monte creative review, as Publicis Groupe announced plans to embed teams of data analysts from Sapient into each of its creative agencies.

In turn, strategy departments have borrowed a page from consultancies' playbooks, helping clients with everything from web design to product development while they hire more employees from outside the traditional agency world.

The result is a marketing ecosystem destined to look much different by this time next year.

Chief strategy officer Andrew Dawson arrived at Deutsch in March after serving as chief creative officer and head marketer at electronics brand Master & Dynamic. His chief goal is helping the department move beyond its conventional role guiding the creative campaigns of its clients. "I want to make sure our strategists are as well informed and curious about business models and operations as they are about consumer behaviors and culture," he explained.

Dawson said the agency's social and digital departments were working more or less independently when he arrived. As part of an effort to unite them, he made "biodiversity" hires like vp, strategist Garett Awad, former retail marketing director at shoemaker Toms, and strategist Gustavo Malagon, a former business consultant at NASA.

Dawson envisions a future in which creative campaigns are only one of his shop's best-known products. "I'd like our strategy department to be top of mind when people think, 'Who could help us sort this problem/opportunity/idea out in the next four to six weeks?'" he said.

Evolving client demands also require more intensive onboarding processes, something Ken Lomasney, COO at the agency Unified, knows well. Unified offers content, creative and data/analytics audits to new partners, for example.

However, clients are not always receptive. "In-depth discovery is really hard to sell," Lomasney explained. He acknowledged that many clients have taken their marketing in-house but believes that trend will reverse as more realize they can't do the work as effectively as agencies.

"I don't know how larger agencies can shift their gears fast enough to protect the foundation of their business and their staff," Lomasney said.

Jason De Turris recently left traditional creative shop CP+B to become chief strategy officer at Phenomenon, a Los Angeles digital shop founded on the idea that the old agency model is broken, explaining, "When the rebels become the establishment, it's time for new rebels."

Strategy, he observes, has become a "black ops" unit tasked with acting as the voice of the consumer while designing content and business strategies that go beyond communications to more directly drive product development and sales. He describes Phenomenon's approach as "consult creatively but make strategically," and would like to see a more prominent role for experiential analytics within strategy groups.

"In the same way a copywriter has an art director partner, strategy and customer experience need to be … finishing each other's sentences," he said, noting that data is "an input, not just an output" and should help facilitate difficult conversations with clients.

For their part, clients have signaled they are onboard with sweeping digital solutions in the interest of future-proofing their brands. But as agencies seek talent from disparate fields, they face new recruiting and retention challenges from the same consultancies and tech companies with which they now compete.

Debra Sercy, joint CEO of executive search firm Grace Blue, has seen many agency leaders transition into roles at analytics firms or in-house marketing teams, estimating that some 80 percent of her clients said they wanted to do something different for a living.

Agency talent is highly valued by consultancies, Sercy said, because it enhances their ability to move beyond suggestion into activation. "I absolutely don't believe agencies are dying, but some are complacent and must evolve to prove to clients that they can work in seamless, integrated fashion," she said. Agencies will remain at an advantage, however, as long as they emphasize the "creative, dynamic force … that doesn't exist on the consultancy side."

Forming units that mimic consultancies will aid agencies in adjusting and contributing to a more simplified, integrated model.

Sercy noted that the process of shaping a diverse talent pool boosts retention rates while it creates new client opportunities. "The good news is that clients are open to different solutions," she said. "It's a great time to be in the agency world for those brave, deliberate leaders to create something different."

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Here’s What Made BBDO's Deceptively Touching 'Judo Kid' Story a Winner

Growing up is hard. When you throw in unforeseen complications like those things we call "dreams," it gets even trickier.

On Father's Day last year, American Family Insurance, by way of a spot from its agency BBDO, embraced that reality with a touching mini-story with a twist called "Dad Insurance for Fearless Dreams."

"This spot takes us back to remember some of our first dreams, and the empowering feeling of possibility that comes from having others there to support and inspire us along the way," says Telisa Yancy, CMO of AFI.

In the ad, a young boy named Mateo is seen daydreaming in his bedroom while he watches videos of flamenco dancers. Mateo lives in a dangerous neighborhood. We watch his dad protect him as he walks past the neighborhood bullies. The truth is, Mateo doesn't walk much anywhere by himself.

With these dangers in mind, his dad one day gives him a box. But what Mateo hopes will be a flamenco outfit turns out to be a judo uniform. Though he's crushed, Mateo does as his father instructs, dutifully attending judo classes.

Of course, judo is not easy to learn. The spot follows Mateo through his classes, where he struggles at first, to bigger and bigger competitions. It's not exactly his favorite pastime, nor does it inspire much happiness in Mateo. But his dad is there to support him, every step of the way.

Then the story takes an unexpected turn. Mateo's dad knows well that judo isn't where his son's passions lie, and the reveal near the end of the spot explains why he put him through all this. Once Mateo has gained enough skills, strength and confidence from his judo classes and competitions, his dad presents him with yet another mystery box. This time, the box contains a flamenco outfit.

When we next see Mateo heading down the sidewalk, he's traveling all alone, his head held high. As the narrative explains, Mateo got some "dad insurance" so he could take care of himself when things got difficult and scary. Judo gave him the confidence to no longer worry about the bullies, while giving his father the peace of mind to allow him to follow his dreams.

"Demonstrating the relationship between insurance and dreams has been at the core of our messaging," says Julie Schaubroeck, associate vp of brand and consumer marketing at AFI. "This spot serves as an emotional demonstration of how a father's careful protection enabled his son to pursue his dream. It serves as a thoughtful and emotional metaphor for insurance."

"The spot also evokes feelings of pride and promise in the American Dream," adds Yancy. "The idea that with hard work, dedication, optimism and belief, we can achieve whatever we set our minds to."

Taking that idea one step further, Yancy points out that the instincts to work hard and to protect our own is "part of our DNA as a country, and that DNA is very strong at AFI."

The "Dad Insurance" spot, and other work BBDO New York has produced for the client, serves to remind consumers of certain core values. "'Dad Insurance' is part of a broader campaign that brings to light the importance of people's dreams and the role AFI has in inspiring, protecting and restoring them," explains Yancy.

Just one month after it was uploaded to YouTube this past June, the video surpassed 6 million views. It was one of the 10 most watched commercials on YouTube in June.

"Many of us are parents," says Susan Golkin, executive creative director at BBDO New York, "and our most important job is to protect our children and support them in any way possible to pursue their dreams and reach their goals.

"The goal of the film was to bring a palpable emotion to the intangible of insurance," Golkin adds. "The story was the perfect metaphor for what it means to have the right insurance behind you. The right support. The right protection. To be the best parent possible."

How often do you feel emotional when purchasing insurance, a fairly straightforward process of paperwork? Or perhaps thinking of the consequences your family will face without it is what gets you? Insurance is a luxury for many families, but most folks can identify with wanting to set their family up for success.

"We consider it a privilege to be able to help dreamers be fearless in pursuit of their dreams," says Yancy.

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Infographic: How Storytelling Is Helping Brands Sell More Products

It's no secret that storytelling is a key tool for brands and marketers that want to connect with consumers—and boost sales. "There's plenty of popular demand for good stories, if binge-watching, binge-listening, and binge-reading statistics are an indicator," explained Ilya Vedrashko, svp and director of research at Hill Holliday's consumer research arm, Origin. "Stories move not only people, but they also move product."

But just how much? To find out, Origin created a series of experiments in which consumers were shown items paired with either standard descriptions or more detailed stories—from user reviews to creator bios, and even fiction. The results were clear. "Every time the product that had a story pulled in more money than the same product without one," said Vedrashko. "That's a lift on no additional investment."

Carlos Monteiro

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Why College Bowl Sponsorships Are a Touchdown for Chick-fil-A and Allstate

As marketers suit up for Super Bowl LI, some brands were already busy capitalizing on another rabid football audience: college bowl fans. The largest college bowls, known as the New Year's Six games—the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, Capital One Orange Bowl, Rose Bowl by Northwestern Mutual, Allstate Sugar Bowl and Goodyear Cotton Bowl—were played this year from Dec. 30 to Jan. 2. Sponsorship efforts, say bowl brands, tend to pay off handsomely.

"Our research shows that [college football] fans are two times more likely to purchase Goodyear if they're aware of our Cotton Bowl sponsorship," noted Seth Klugherz, North American director of marketing at Goodyear, which sponsored the Cotton Bowl for the third consecutive year.

After the Super Bowl and NFL playoffs, college bowl games are the most impactful sporting events from a marketing perspective, said Jimmy Bruns, svp of client services at GMR Marketing. "You're at the time of the year where the NFL playoffs aren't happening yet and the NBA isn't yet in its midseason form, so it's a unique opportunity in the calendar to be out there from a sports perspective," he said.

ESPN broadcasts the games and arranges the sponsorships, which often are part of a season-long deal for ad time during college football games. "It builds their brand, drives awareness, or achieves tactical multimedia objectives over the course of the football season," said Rob Temple, svp of sports management at ESPN. "They get a lot of earned media and PR extensions and a ton of brand exposure."

Brands can calculate ROI of these sponsorships by taking surveys on purchase intent and net promoter score before the game, and then taking those same measures after the game, GMR's Bruns said.

"You have to be able to provide a proof point of why a specific opportunity is worth it: that it's working on a year-to-year basis, or that your audience is watching these games and they're passionate about them, or that you moved the needle in terms of purchase intent," he said.

Here, a closer look at how the bowls played out.

Television ratings Brands sign sponsorship agreements with ESPN based on ratings expectations. "Any time someone mentions your name on TV or in the media, you can put a dollar value on it," said Matt Powell, sports industry analyst at NPD Group. "It's a way of getting a mass representation of the brand names, and of driving recognition."

Social media The bowl games amass a large Twitter following, and brands often create shareable social content related to the games. This year, Goodyear commissioned sculptures of the Cotton Bowl team mascots, the University of Wisconsin's Bucky the Badger and Western Michigan's Bronco—all made of tires—and posted behind-the-scenes videos of the artists at work creating them, which earned 100 million media impressions.

National Exposure Chick-fil-A's 20-year sponsorship of the Peach Bowl began because both parties are based in Atlanta, but the tie-in ultimately helped the firm reach a national audience. "We were a regional brand at that time in the Southeast and Southwest, and college football is a passion point for those two areas specifically," said Chick-fil-A marketing services director Robert McLaughlin. "We wanted to ramp up our brand recognition from a national standpoint, and it's improved visibility for us in the Northeast, Midwest and Northwest."

Regional plays Allstate began sponsoring the New Orleans-based Sugar Bowl in 2006 as a way to support the city's economy after Hurricane Katrina. "For an insurer to position themselves in the community as helping to support it makes sense," said Bryce Townsend, head of business solutions and sales at ESP Properties, a sports sponsorship agency.

Charitable effort Chick-fil-A has donated $16.3 million to charity and scholarship programs since its sponsorship of the Peach Bowl began in 1996. More than 1,000 employees were on-site volunteering at the game this year. "It really helps with employee engagement," said McLaughlin.

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Marketers Will Be Tempted to Dial Back Their Diversity Under Trump. We Can't Let Them

"Frankly, I have yet to engage in a direct action campaign that was 'well timed' in the view of those who have not suffered unduly from the disease of segregation. For years now I have heard the word 'Wait!' It rings in the ear of every Negro with piercing familiarity. This 'Wait' has almost always meant 'Never.'"

Edward Bowser

Those words were penned by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on scraps of paper nearly 54 years ago while he sat in a jail here in my home city of Birmingham, Ala.

Sadly, those same words could have been typed on a blog last week and still be just as relevant.

Today, we celebrate the legacy of a man whose work has become the embodiment of racial harmony and inclusion.

In four days, we will witness the induction of a president whose campaign was steeped in division and exclusion.

Call it a dream deferred.

As President-elect Donald Trump's rise to power ran parallel with the nation's growing civil unrest, pundits quickly invoked MLK's name whenever they were shaken from their comfort zones. From football players peacefully kneeling during the playing of the national anthem in protest of police brutality to actors taking the stage to calmly challenge our future vice-president to embrace his country's diversity, critics of today's civil rights movement retaliated with the same tired phrases:

"That's not the proper way to protest."

"There's a time in a place for everything. That's not the right time."

And this doozy: "MLK would never support that."

Clearly they never read King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail," where he reminds us that "justice too long delayed is justice denied."

Don't whitewash King's legacy; he was so much more than a dreamer. He was action personified. In 1967, during a meeting of clergy, King spoke on the war in Vietnam with fiery passion: "We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time."

It's a lesson I hope my fellow marketing professionals will take to heart in these turbulent times.

Over the past few years, marketers have created ads as diverse as the country we call home. Tylenol's #HowWeFamily campaign embraced LGBT households while H&M's "Close the Loop" spot shattered fashion norms by featuring a Muslim model wearing a hijab. Cheerios and Old Navy rightfully brushed off closed-minded trolls who attacked their ads featuring interracial couples.

These small steps became giant leaps toward greater representation for minority communities. Those spots, and the growing tide of more like them, are a true reflection of our country—varying hues of color, faith and culture.

Complicated, yet beautiful.

And with 80 percent of parents saying they prefer seeing diverse families in ads, it seems like inclusion should be a low-risk, high-reward opportunity for forward-thinking marketers.

But times are changing.

Trump's presidential campaign was built on fear—the fear of a changing America. Our country is evolving and King's dream of black and white girls and boys holding hands in harmony is more than just a vision; it's increasingly a reality.

It's easy to talk about the greatness of that dream, but when it actually takes hold, well, that's when folks get uneasy.

That brings us to 2017, where critics wave off frank discussions about racial inclusion as idle chatter from a culture that has become "too politically correct." This dismissiveness sets a dangerous precedent that could unravel decades of progress.

My fear is that de-emphasizing diversity will drag us back to the days where "diversity" in advertising simply meant copping out with targeted media, with pro-LGBT ads reserved for magazines aimed at gay readers and black actors being used by major brands only for ads in "urban" markets. I fear that the genius of Wells Fargo's "Learning Sign Language" spot – where differences are not seen as stumbling blocks—could wind up on the cutting room floor.

I mean, when the leader of the free world refuses to champion diversity, why should marketers bother? As many of us know, all it takes to kill a bold message is for one client in the room to say "let's not stir the pot" or "maybe not right now."

Well, marketers, if you think this is the time to tone down inclusiveness, think again. We need your creative insight and bravery now more than ever.

We need more ads like Barbie's Imagine the Possibilities' campaign to broaden the imaginations of young girls, shattering gender stereotypes and reminding them that no goal is unattainable.

We need more spots like Russell Simmons' Making Moves campaign, which raises discussions about the racial profiling and violence that have shackled the black community for decades.

Now more than ever, we need marketers to do what they do best‚tell engaging, authentic stories about the communities they serve, even when reflecting that diversity will invite vile backlash from those who want to keep such conversations out of the national spotlight.

That's King's true legacy: Not dreaming, but the fierce urgency of action.

And don't delay. When you hear clients or colleagues  say "wait," remember Dr. King's words, and know that what they often mean is "never."

Edward Bowser (@etbowser) is a writer and content creator at Big Communication in Birmingham, Alabama.

Posted: Mon 16th of January, 2017

How Social Media Is Likely to Affect the Kind of Super Bowl Party You Have

According to the prevailing data, roughly half of Americans who watch the Super Bowl plan to do so at a party. That means some 56 million of us will be sitting on someone else's sofa when the game is on. The Super Bowl party is, of course, a national institution. And while many of its familiar features—the bean dip, the keg in the kitchen—are as old as pigskin, there's one newer element that's just as important as the TV screen everyone's watching.

It is, actually, that other screen everyone is watching.

According to a just-released survey from Influence Central, social media has become so integral to Super Bowl parties that it demonstrably affects everything from how hosts plan their parties to the number of guests they invite. Perhaps the most telling of the survey's stats: 78 percent of fans will be busy on social platforms (Facebook's the most popular, followed by Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat) while the game is on.

While that finding might seem obvious, Influence Central founder and CEO Stacy DeBroff explains that there are broader social trends behind it. Because the rise of social media allows partygoers to interact, if only virtually, with millions of people, Americans no longer feel the need to host large gatherings, and the length of the Super Bowl party guest list has shrunk accordingly.

"It used to be that the Super Bowl was a huge party, and you'd want to be in a big crowd," DeBroff says, "but now people want intimate gatherings." According to the survey, 47 percent of people throwing Super Bowl parties are inviting 10 or fewer people.

The study found that social media also plays a pivotal role in the planning of the gatherings themselves, with the majority of Super Bowl party planners looking to Pinterest (68 percent) and Facebook (26 percent) for things like recipes and decorating ideas. In fact, while a quarter of party planners still get tips from friends and family, nearly the same number (just over 22 percent) get inspiration from Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and Snapchat.

Once the party starts, social media will also define how people experience the game, and that includes the minutes when football's not even on. While 32 percent of party attendees plan to use social media to "react to the game," a far bigger number, 38 percent, will use it to spout off on the advertising.

"The No. 1 thing that people react to is the commercials," DeBroff said. "We live in a land where consumers consider themselves to be highly discerning about marketing. People become critics, arbiters of marketing."

DeBroff adds that her firm's data contains some marketing intelligence, too: Since social media plays such a central role in everything from what kind of snacks and drinks party hosts will serve to how to decorate their dens, brands should be thinking about how they can be a part of that conversation.

"Even if a brand doesn't have a commercial in the game, they should be thinking of ways they can drop into the conversation," she said. Food brands should be posting ideas for hors d'oeuvres, home-furnishings companies can suggest ways to decorate the den. Alcohol brands can develop and shoot team-themed cocktails, and so on. And don't assume everyone will feel like watching whatever musical number Lady Gaga whips up, either.

"You know that people are going to be bored during halftime," DeBroff advises. "For brands, there's an opportunity there."

Posted: Mon 16th of January, 2017

AdWeek : All News

How CNN's Branded-Content Studio and Modelo Celebrated Diversity in the American Heartland

At their best, marketing campaigns define a brand, inspire consumers and, yes, sell things. But sometimes, they become so much more than that—like a reflection of who we really are, for better or worse.

The Mexican beer brand Modelo had dramatically grown its business in the U.S. over the last few decades and sought to drive brand awareness while telling the story of a community here that had come together despite its differences during a time of much-publicized racial and cultural division.

The place that was chosen to spotlight: Garden City, Kan., population 30,000, a town where more than a dozen languages are spoken, where diversity is seen as a strength and that "represents the best vision for the future of America."

The resulting campaign, "Fighting for Better," was a five-part web series, produced by CNN's branded-content arm Courageous Studio and featured under its Great Big Story video network. Modelo's creative agency, Ogilvy & Mather Chicago, came up with the idea for the campaign, while media shop Horizon Media connected Modelo and Ogilvy with Great Big Story.

To create the series, members of the Courageous team spent a month in Garden City, getting to know its residents, digging for stories that fit with Modelo's message. The summer was spent producing the series, which launched in September.

"Modelo has been fighting for better since 1925, growing from a little beer in Tacuba, Mexico City, to become the fastest-growing beer in America," says Ann Legan, vp, brand marketing for Modelo. "As a result, we proudly believe it doesn't matter where you come from; it matters what you're made of. Nowhere is that more true than in Garden City, a diverse place of people fighting for better, too. We wanted to celebrate the shared values between the brand and the people of Garden City and show how with a fighting spirit and the desire to persevere through adversity, great things can happen."

"One of the things [Modelo] wanted to do was, looking at the divisive conversations, something that was completely the opposite," says David Spiegel, svp of sales and brand strategy for Great Big Story. "Where the world around them was zigging, how could they zag?"

The series underscores how, no matter where we come from, we all want the same basic things. One installment, titled "Where Cowboys Are More Than Herdsman," featured two men—one Mexican, one American—sharing stories of how they moved to Garden City for more opportunity, learning after they got there that "a united world is better for everyone."

The results of the campaign went far beyond the expectations of Modelo, which had hoped for at least 1 million views. To date, the series has been seen 4.6 million times and inspired 50,000 social engagements.

But as it turned out, that wasn't the end of the story of Garden City, or Modelo's connection to it. In October, the town would find itself at the center of a major news story when the FBI revealed it had foiled a terrorist plot to bomb an apartment building that's home to many Somali immigrants and a mosque featured in the series.

Modelo and the Courageous team knew they had to address an event that affected a group of people they had come to know so well. "What we thought of was that we're not going to merchandise the news, but we have to be aware," explains Spiegel.

So, a sixth video was created by Courageous as a tribute to the people of Garden City—a moving and inspiring two-minute piece urging perseverance.

Ultimately, "Fight for Better" demonstrated how Modelo and its customers were both "built from the fighting spirit," says Legan. "To truly extend that emotion and brand equity in an authentic way, we knew we couldn't just talk about the fighting spirit. We needed to actually show and celebrate the people who were living it."

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Our First Arc Awards Winners Represent the Best in Branded Storytelling

Great storytelling is no longer the sole reserve of David Lean or Shonda Rhimes. Yes, advertisers, whose more traditional forms of marketing interrupt our favorite content, have expanded their horizons far beyond the much-maligned 30-second TV spot, creating branded content of grander proportions that are increasingly data-informed. Adweek’s inaugural Arc Awards, produced in partnership with FPT Media, honors the best work out there, across nearly two dozen categories. On Jan. 21, we will celebrate all our winners in concert with the [email protected] event in Deer Valley, Utah, held during the Sundance Film Festival. There, we will also announce the winner of our Grand Arc Award. Suffice it to say, we have high expectations that the industry will continue to raise the creative bar on branded storytelling with each passing year. We will be there, along with our Arc Awards jury, to celebrate it.

Special thanks to our stellar Adweek Arc Awards jury, especially chairperson Shannon Pruitt, president of Dentsu Aegis Network’s The Story Lab U.S., who helped guide the process. Pruitt’s fellow jurors include: • Lou Arbetter, general manager of PepsiCo Creators League Studio • Tom Bannister, founder of SXM • Otto Bell, vp and group creative director, CNN Curageous Studio • Ty Braswell, creative digital strategist, JASH Comedy • Ricky Ray Butler, svp of digital, BEN • Nick Childs, CCO of Initiative • Jeremy Chilnick, COO and partner, Warrior Poets • Geoff Cottrill, president, MullenLowe U.S. • Hillary Frey, co-CCO, Matter Studios • Lewis Henderson, CEO, Entertainment, The Marketing Arm • Stephanie Horbaczewski, CEO, StyleHaul • David Lang, chief content officer, Mindshare N.A. • Rupert Maconick, founder and executive producer, Saville Productions • Stacy Minero, director, content planning and creative agencies, Twitter • Burke Morley, head of creative and content, Sonic • Kelly Mullen, global director, U-Entertainment, Unilever • Morgan Neville, documentary director, Saville Productions • Marcus Peterzell, evp of entertainment and head of Ketchum Sounds, Ketchum Sports & Entertainment • Emmanuel Seugé, founder, Cassius • Steve Stone, ECD and chairman, Heat • Kaaren Whitney-Vernon, CEO, Shift2 • Jason Zada, film director

Also, make sure to take a look at four in-depth profiles of these Arc Award winners:  • Winner of Best Nonfiction Series (Digital): CNN Courageous' "Fight for Better" work on behalf of Modelo, by Kristina Monllos; • Winner of Best Use of Short-Form Fiction (Film): BBDO New York's "Judo Kid" effort for client American Family Insurance, by Sami Main; • Winner of Best Sponsored Content: Forsman & Bodenfors' "Look Who's Driving" stunt for Volvo Trucks, by Christine Birkner; • And Winner of Best Charity/Pro Bono/Pro-Social Effort: The Martin Agency's "World's Biggest Asshole" PSA for Donate Life, by Tony Case.

Finally, it needs to be noted there were no winners in the following categories:  • Best Use of Long-form Fiction (Digital) • Best Use of Long-form Fiction (Film) • Best Use of Fiction Series (Film) • Best Use of Long-form Fiction (TV) • Best Use of Short-form Fiction (TV) • Best Use of Long-form Nonfiction (Digital) • Best Use of Short-form NonFiction (TV) • Best NonFiction Series (TV)

—Michael Bürgi

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Volvo Won Its Adweek Arc Award by Letting a 4-Year-Old Drive One of Its Trucks

The Volvo FMX 18-ton construction truck bills itself as "built for the toughest working conditions on earth." Volvo Trucks and agency Forsman & Bodenfors set out to prove that claim in a unique and effective way: by letting an adorable and fearless 4-year-old girl take it for a test drive.

The film, "Look Who's Driving," which launched in December 2015, puts bespectacled kid Sophie at the proverbial wheel, driving the truck through a construction site using a remote control device.

As Volvo's testers look on, Sophie excitedly pilots the vehicle through mini-explosions, a water-filled trench and other obstacles. At one point, the truck tumbles over a ravine before it safely turns right side up and keeps going. It then crashes through a house, again emerging unscathed. The video ends with Sophie doing what a lot of kids—and grown-ups—in her position would no doubt like to do: spinning out a giant doughnut.

The video succeeds not only in that it is wildly captivating, but also in that it meets the client's objective. It demonstrates the truck's new features—automatic traction control, advanced steering, rear suspension— while showing off how it can perform under the most demanding driving conditions.

"It's entertaining while showcasing the advantages of these features on the truck," explains Fredrik Klevenfeldt, director of PR and social media at Volvo Trucks. "The thing is to always have something unexpected. And having a little girl drive the truck remotely really gets your attention. There's a little kid driving a truck, but at the same time, there's a serious message about the truck."

Adds Björn Engström, creative executive at Forsman & Bodenfors: "In the construction segment, you need a really sturdy, robust truck, and we wanted to test it. The truck rolls over, can turn sharp corners, and the skid plates underneath are made of high-grade steel­—everything that makes it tough and durable and sturdy. We showed all of that in the film, and Sophie really enjoyed driving the truck."

The decision to cast a girl driving a heavy-duty vehicle was not deliberate. Explains Engström: "It's cool that it's a small girl driving. It could've been a boy as well—we had a lot of kids auditioning, and she was the best. She was really great, so we decided to go [with] her."

The campaign also made wise use of Volvo's limited budget. Without significant dollars devoted to traditional media, the agency sought to get traction for the spot through social media, YouTube and PR, both in traditional and specialty trucking media. The strategy carried its load admirably, with the video racking up 25 million views on YouTube and Facebook and 1,000 total media impressions.

The video helped expose the product to a mainstream audience while also driving Volvo Trucks' core customers to the brand's site, where they could find more detailed videos about the model's technical capabilities.

"We got more than a half a million views on those videos after this, so it showed that we reached people who are really interested in trucks and are into the details," Engström notes. "There are millions of truck drivers around the world. We wanted to reach the influencers and a broader audience, too, that would say, 'Hey, did you see this cool thing on YouTube?' We reached a lot of truck drivers as well as influencers."

Adds Klevenfeldt: "The engagement we got shows that we got the message about the features across. It was a door opener for salespeople."

"Look Who's Driving" marks the reboot of Volvo Trucks' "Live Test Series," which evolved following the agency's assessment that it is a challenge to reach truck drivers by way of traditional advertising—so producing creative with a shot at going viral is the better tactic.

To help ensure it would get pickup, it was important to create videos that both inform and entertain. The series includes a 2014 video, "Epic Split," that featured Jean-Claude Van Damme straddling two moving Volvo 18-ton trucks to demonstrate the stability and precision of the vehicles' steering capabilities.

Another video in the series, "The Hamster," features one of the furry pets steering a truck from the bottom to the top of a quarry to demonstrate its steering prowess.

The series has won awards from Cannes Lions, D&AD and The One Show.

"Look Who's Driving" followed in the same tracks, securing wins at Cannes Lions and The One Show.

The video series ties nicely into Volvo's strategy of approachability, Klevenfeldt says.

"We try to use accessible language, not just talk to experts or someone who knows a lot about trucks," he explains. "It strikes the balance of being entertaining for a broad audience but still relevant to our core audience."

"Volvo is known to be a human brand—it's down-to-earth, human and friendly," adds Engström. "Tapping into pop culture a little bit is really effective. It's easy to be a little dull if you want to show the robustness of a truck, but this gives it a human touch."

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

How Agencies Are Shifting Strategies to Compete With Accenture and Deloitte

This past year had consultancies rushing to get into the ad business, with Accenture acquiring London-based Karmarama, Deloitte snagging Heat in San Francisco and Epsilon winning the Del Monte creative review, as Publicis Groupe announced plans to embed teams of data analysts from Sapient into each of its creative agencies.

In turn, strategy departments have borrowed a page from consultancies' playbooks, helping clients with everything from web design to product development while they hire more employees from outside the traditional agency world.

The result is a marketing ecosystem destined to look much different by this time next year.

Chief strategy officer Andrew Dawson arrived at Deutsch in March after serving as chief creative officer and head marketer at electronics brand Master & Dynamic. His chief goal is helping the department move beyond its conventional role guiding the creative campaigns of its clients. "I want to make sure our strategists are as well informed and curious about business models and operations as they are about consumer behaviors and culture," he explained.

Dawson said the agency's social and digital departments were working more or less independently when he arrived. As part of an effort to unite them, he made "biodiversity" hires like vp, strategist Garett Awad, former retail marketing director at shoemaker Toms, and strategist Gustavo Malagon, a former business consultant at NASA.

Dawson envisions a future in which creative campaigns are only one of his shop's best-known products. "I'd like our strategy department to be top of mind when people think, 'Who could help us sort this problem/opportunity/idea out in the next four to six weeks?'" he said.

Evolving client demands also require more intensive onboarding processes, something Ken Lomasney, COO at the agency Unified, knows well. Unified offers content, creative and data/analytics audits to new partners, for example.

However, clients are not always receptive. "In-depth discovery is really hard to sell," Lomasney explained. He acknowledged that many clients have taken their marketing in-house but believes that trend will reverse as more realize they can't do the work as effectively as agencies.

"I don't know how larger agencies can shift their gears fast enough to protect the foundation of their business and their staff," Lomasney said.

Jason De Turris recently left traditional creative shop CP+B to become chief strategy officer at Phenomenon, a Los Angeles digital shop founded on the idea that the old agency model is broken, explaining, "When the rebels become the establishment, it's time for new rebels."

Strategy, he observes, has become a "black ops" unit tasked with acting as the voice of the consumer while designing content and business strategies that go beyond communications to more directly drive product development and sales. He describes Phenomenon's approach as "consult creatively but make strategically," and would like to see a more prominent role for experiential analytics within strategy groups.

"In the same way a copywriter has an art director partner, strategy and customer experience need to be … finishing each other's sentences," he said, noting that data is "an input, not just an output" and should help facilitate difficult conversations with clients.

For their part, clients have signaled they are onboard with sweeping digital solutions in the interest of future-proofing their brands. But as agencies seek talent from disparate fields, they face new recruiting and retention challenges from the same consultancies and tech companies with which they now compete.

Debra Sercy, joint CEO of executive search firm Grace Blue, has seen many agency leaders transition into roles at analytics firms or in-house marketing teams, estimating that some 80 percent of her clients said they wanted to do something different for a living.

Agency talent is highly valued by consultancies, Sercy said, because it enhances their ability to move beyond suggestion into activation. "I absolutely don't believe agencies are dying, but some are complacent and must evolve to prove to clients that they can work in seamless, integrated fashion," she said. Agencies will remain at an advantage, however, as long as they emphasize the "creative, dynamic force … that doesn't exist on the consultancy side."

Forming units that mimic consultancies will aid agencies in adjusting and contributing to a more simplified, integrated model.

Sercy noted that the process of shaping a diverse talent pool boosts retention rates while it creates new client opportunities. "The good news is that clients are open to different solutions," she said. "It's a great time to be in the agency world for those brave, deliberate leaders to create something different."

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Why College Bowl Sponsorships Are a Touchdown for Chick-fil-A and Allstate

As marketers suit up for Super Bowl LI, some brands were already busy capitalizing on another rabid football audience: college bowl fans. The largest college bowls, known as the New Year's Six games—the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, Capital One Orange Bowl, Rose Bowl by Northwestern Mutual, Allstate Sugar Bowl and Goodyear Cotton Bowl—were played this year from Dec. 30 to Jan. 2. Sponsorship efforts, say bowl brands, tend to pay off handsomely.

"Our research shows that [college football] fans are two times more likely to purchase Goodyear if they're aware of our Cotton Bowl sponsorship," noted Seth Klugherz, North American director of marketing at Goodyear, which sponsored the Cotton Bowl for the third consecutive year.

After the Super Bowl and NFL playoffs, college bowl games are the most impactful sporting events from a marketing perspective, said Jimmy Bruns, svp of client services at GMR Marketing. "You're at the time of the year where the NFL playoffs aren't happening yet and the NBA isn't yet in its midseason form, so it's a unique opportunity in the calendar to be out there from a sports perspective," he said.

ESPN broadcasts the games and arranges the sponsorships, which often are part of a season-long deal for ad time during college football games. "It builds their brand, drives awareness, or achieves tactical multimedia objectives over the course of the football season," said Rob Temple, svp of sports management at ESPN. "They get a lot of earned media and PR extensions and a ton of brand exposure."

Brands can calculate ROI of these sponsorships by taking surveys on purchase intent and net promoter score before the game, and then taking those same measures after the game, GMR's Bruns said.

"You have to be able to provide a proof point of why a specific opportunity is worth it: that it's working on a year-to-year basis, or that your audience is watching these games and they're passionate about them, or that you moved the needle in terms of purchase intent," he said.

Here, a closer look at how the bowls played out.

Television ratings Brands sign sponsorship agreements with ESPN based on ratings expectations. "Any time someone mentions your name on TV or in the media, you can put a dollar value on it," said Matt Powell, sports industry analyst at NPD Group. "It's a way of getting a mass representation of the brand names, and of driving recognition."

Social media The bowl games amass a large Twitter following, and brands often create shareable social content related to the games. This year, Goodyear commissioned sculptures of the Cotton Bowl team mascots, the University of Wisconsin's Bucky the Badger and Western Michigan's Bronco—all made of tires—and posted behind-the-scenes videos of the artists at work creating them, which earned 100 million media impressions.

National Exposure Chick-fil-A's 20-year sponsorship of the Peach Bowl began because both parties are based in Atlanta, but the tie-in ultimately helped the firm reach a national audience. "We were a regional brand at that time in the Southeast and Southwest, and college football is a passion point for those two areas specifically," said Chick-fil-A marketing services director Robert McLaughlin. "We wanted to ramp up our brand recognition from a national standpoint, and it's improved visibility for us in the Northeast, Midwest and Northwest."

Regional plays Allstate began sponsoring the New Orleans-based Sugar Bowl in 2006 as a way to support the city's economy after Hurricane Katrina. "For an insurer to position themselves in the community as helping to support it makes sense," said Bryce Townsend, head of business solutions and sales at ESP Properties, a sports sponsorship agency.

Charitable effort Chick-fil-A has donated $16.3 million to charity and scholarship programs since its sponsorship of the Peach Bowl began in 1996. More than 1,000 employees were on-site volunteering at the game this year. "It really helps with employee engagement," said McLaughlin.

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Infographic: How Storytelling Is Helping Brands Sell More Products

It's no secret that storytelling is a key tool for brands and marketers that want to connect with consumers—and boost sales. "There's plenty of popular demand for good stories, if binge-watching, binge-listening, and binge-reading statistics are an indicator," explained Ilya Vedrashko, svp and director of research at Hill Holliday's consumer research arm, Origin. "Stories move not only people, but they also move product."

But just how much? To find out, Origin created a series of experiments in which consumers were shown items paired with either standard descriptions or more detailed stories—from user reviews to creator bios, and even fiction. The results were clear. "Every time the product that had a story pulled in more money than the same product without one," said Vedrashko. "That's a lift on no additional investment."

Carlos Monteiro

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Here’s What Made BBDO's Deceptively Touching 'Judo Kid' Story a Winner

Growing up is hard. When you throw in unforeseen complications like those things we call "dreams," it gets even trickier.

On Father's Day last year, American Family Insurance, by way of a spot from its agency BBDO, embraced that reality with a touching mini-story with a twist called "Dad Insurance for Fearless Dreams."

"This spot takes us back to remember some of our first dreams, and the empowering feeling of possibility that comes from having others there to support and inspire us along the way," says Telisa Yancy, CMO of AFI.

In the ad, a young boy named Mateo is seen daydreaming in his bedroom while he watches videos of flamenco dancers. Mateo lives in a dangerous neighborhood. We watch his dad protect him as he walks past the neighborhood bullies. The truth is, Mateo doesn't walk much anywhere by himself.

With these dangers in mind, his dad one day gives him a box. But what Mateo hopes will be a flamenco outfit turns out to be a judo uniform. Though he's crushed, Mateo does as his father instructs, dutifully attending judo classes.

Of course, judo is not easy to learn. The spot follows Mateo through his classes, where he struggles at first, to bigger and bigger competitions. It's not exactly his favorite pastime, nor does it inspire much happiness in Mateo. But his dad is there to support him, every step of the way.

Then the story takes an unexpected turn. Mateo's dad knows well that judo isn't where his son's passions lie, and the reveal near the end of the spot explains why he put him through all this. Once Mateo has gained enough skills, strength and confidence from his judo classes and competitions, his dad presents him with yet another mystery box. This time, the box contains a flamenco outfit.

When we next see Mateo heading down the sidewalk, he's traveling all alone, his head held high. As the narrative explains, Mateo got some "dad insurance" so he could take care of himself when things got difficult and scary. Judo gave him the confidence to no longer worry about the bullies, while giving his father the peace of mind to allow him to follow his dreams.

"Demonstrating the relationship between insurance and dreams has been at the core of our messaging," says Julie Schaubroeck, associate vp of brand and consumer marketing at AFI. "This spot serves as an emotional demonstration of how a father's careful protection enabled his son to pursue his dream. It serves as a thoughtful and emotional metaphor for insurance."

"The spot also evokes feelings of pride and promise in the American Dream," adds Yancy. "The idea that with hard work, dedication, optimism and belief, we can achieve whatever we set our minds to."

Taking that idea one step further, Yancy points out that the instincts to work hard and to protect our own is "part of our DNA as a country, and that DNA is very strong at AFI."

The "Dad Insurance" spot, and other work BBDO New York has produced for the client, serves to remind consumers of certain core values. "'Dad Insurance' is part of a broader campaign that brings to light the importance of people's dreams and the role AFI has in inspiring, protecting and restoring them," explains Yancy.

Just one month after it was uploaded to YouTube this past June, the video surpassed 6 million views. It was one of the 10 most watched commercials on YouTube in June.

"Many of us are parents," says Susan Golkin, executive creative director at BBDO New York, "and our most important job is to protect our children and support them in any way possible to pursue their dreams and reach their goals.

"The goal of the film was to bring a palpable emotion to the intangible of insurance," Golkin adds. "The story was the perfect metaphor for what it means to have the right insurance behind you. The right support. The right protection. To be the best parent possible."

How often do you feel emotional when purchasing insurance, a fairly straightforward process of paperwork? Or perhaps thinking of the consequences your family will face without it is what gets you? Insurance is a luxury for many families, but most folks can identify with wanting to set their family up for success.

"We consider it a privilege to be able to help dreamers be fearless in pursuit of their dreams," says Yancy.

This story first appeared in the January 16, 2017 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Posted: Tue 17th of January, 2017

Marketers Will Be Tempted to Dial Back Their Diversity Under Trump. We Can't Let Them

"Frankly, I have yet to engage in a direct action campaign that was 'well timed' in the view of those who have not suffered unduly from the disease of segregation. For years now I have heard the word 'Wait!' It rings in the ear of every Negro with piercing familiarity. This 'Wait' has almost always meant 'Never.'"

Edward Bowser

Those words were penned by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on scraps of paper nearly 54 years ago while he sat in a jail here in my home city of Birmingham, Ala.

Sadly, those same words could have been typed on a blog last week and still be just as relevant.

Today, we celebrate the legacy of a man whose work has become the embodiment of racial harmony and inclusion.

In four days, we will witness the induction of a president whose campaign was steeped in division and exclusion.

Call it a dream deferred.

As President-elect Donald Trump's rise to power ran parallel with the nation's growing civil unrest, pundits quickly invoked MLK's name whenever they were shaken from their comfort zones. From football players peacefully kneeling during the playing of the national anthem in protest of police brutality to actors taking the stage to calmly challenge our future vice-president to embrace his country's diversity, critics of today's civil rights movement retaliated with the same tired phrases:

"That's not the proper way to protest."

"There's a time in a place for everything. That's not the right time."

And this doozy: "MLK would never support that."

Clearly they never read King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail," where he reminds us that "justice too long delayed is justice denied."

Don't whitewash King's legacy; he was so much more than a dreamer. He was action personified. In 1967, during a meeting of clergy, King spoke on the war in Vietnam with fiery passion: "We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time."

It's a lesson I hope my fellow marketing professionals will take to heart in these turbulent times.

Over the past few years, marketers have created ads as diverse as the country we call home. Tylenol's #HowWeFamily campaign embraced LGBT households while H&M's "Close the Loop" spot shattered fashion norms by featuring a Muslim model wearing a hijab. Cheerios and Old Navy rightfully brushed off closed-minded trolls who attacked their ads featuring interracial couples.

These small steps became giant leaps toward greater representation for minority communities. Those spots, and the growing tide of more like them, are a true reflection of our country—varying hues of color, faith and culture.

Complicated, yet beautiful.

And with 80 percent of parents saying they prefer seeing diverse families in ads, it seems like inclusion should be a low-risk, high-reward opportunity for forward-thinking marketers.

But times are changing.

Trump's presidential campaign was built on fear—the fear of a changing America. Our country is evolving and King's dream of black and white girls and boys holding hands in harmony is more than just a vision; it's increasingly a reality.

It's easy to talk about the greatness of that dream, but when it actually takes hold, well, that's when folks get uneasy.

That brings us to 2017, where critics wave off frank discussions about racial inclusion as idle chatter from a culture that has become "too politically correct." This dismissiveness sets a dangerous precedent that could unravel decades of progress.

My fear is that de-emphasizing diversity will drag us back to the days where "diversity" in advertising simply meant copping out with targeted media, with pro-LGBT ads reserved for magazines aimed at gay readers and black actors being used by major brands only for ads in "urban" markets. I fear that the genius of Wells Fargo's "Learning Sign Language" spot – where differences are not seen as stumbling blocks—could wind up on the cutting room floor.

I mean, when the leader of the free world refuses to champion diversity, why should marketers bother? As many of us know, all it takes to kill a bold message is for one client in the room to say "let's not stir the pot" or "maybe not right now."

Well, marketers, if you think this is the time to tone down inclusiveness, think again. We need your creative insight and bravery now more than ever.

We need more ads like Barbie's Imagine the Possibilities' campaign to broaden the imaginations of young girls, shattering gender stereotypes and reminding them that no goal is unattainable.

We need more spots like Russell Simmons' Making Moves campaign, which raises discussions about the racial profiling and violence that have shackled the black community for decades.

Now more than ever, we need marketers to do what they do best‚tell engaging, authentic stories about the communities they serve, even when reflecting that diversity will invite vile backlash from those who want to keep such conversations out of the national spotlight.

That's King's true legacy: Not dreaming, but the fierce urgency of action.

And don't delay. When you hear clients or colleagues  say "wait," remember Dr. King's words, and know that what they often mean is "never."

Edward Bowser (@etbowser) is a writer and content creator at Big Communication in Birmingham, Alabama.

Posted: Mon 16th of January, 2017

How Social Media Is Likely to Affect the Kind of Super Bowl Party You Have

According to the prevailing data, roughly half of Americans who watch the Super Bowl plan to do so at a party. That means some 56 million of us will be sitting on someone else's sofa when the game is on. The Super Bowl party is, of course, a national institution. And while many of its familiar features—the bean dip, the keg in the kitchen—are as old as pigskin, there's one newer element that's just as important as the TV screen everyone's watching.

It is, actually, that other screen everyone is watching.

According to a just-released survey from Influence Central, social media has become so integral to Super Bowl parties that it demonstrably affects everything from how hosts plan their parties to the number of guests they invite. Perhaps the most telling of the survey's stats: 78 percent of fans will be busy on social platforms (Facebook's the most popular, followed by Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat) while the game is on.

While that finding might seem obvious, Influence Central founder and CEO Stacy DeBroff explains that there are broader social trends behind it. Because the rise of social media allows partygoers to interact, if only virtually, with millions of people, Americans no longer feel the need to host large gatherings, and the length of the Super Bowl party guest list has shrunk accordingly.

"It used to be that the Super Bowl was a huge party, and you'd want to be in a big crowd," DeBroff says, "but now people want intimate gatherings." According to the survey, 47 percent of people throwing Super Bowl parties are inviting 10 or fewer people.

The study found that social media also plays a pivotal role in the planning of the gatherings themselves, with the majority of Super Bowl party planners looking to Pinterest (68 percent) and Facebook (26 percent) for things like recipes and decorating ideas. In fact, while a quarter of party planners still get tips from friends and family, nearly the same number (just over 22 percent) get inspiration from Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and Snapchat.

Once the party starts, social media will also define how people experience the game, and that includes the minutes when football's not even on. While 32 percent of party attendees plan to use social media to "react to the game," a far bigger number, 38 percent, will use it to spout off on the advertising.

"The No. 1 thing that people react to is the commercials," DeBroff said. "We live in a land where consumers consider themselves to be highly discerning about marketing. People become critics, arbiters of marketing."

DeBroff adds that her firm's data contains some marketing intelligence, too: Since social media plays such a central role in everything from what kind of snacks and drinks party hosts will serve to how to decorate their dens, brands should be thinking about how they can be a part of that conversation.

"Even if a brand doesn't have a commercial in the game, they should be thinking of ways they can drop into the conversation," she said. Food brands should be posting ideas for hors d'oeuvres, home-furnishings companies can suggest ways to decorate the den. Alcohol brands can develop and shoot team-themed cocktails, and so on. And don't assume everyone will feel like watching whatever musical number Lady Gaga whips up, either.

"You know that people are going to be bored during halftime," DeBroff advises. "For brands, there's an opportunity there."

Posted: Mon 16th of January, 2017

Gus Fring Was Behind That Clever Los Pollos Hermanos Ad for Better Call Saul

When AMC's Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul returns for Season 3 on April 10, the show will feature another familiar face from Breaking Bad: ruthless drug lord Gus Fring, played by Giancarlo Esposito.

AMC teased Esposito's appearance last week by releasing a clever ad for Los Pollos Hermanos—the fictional fast-food fried chicken chain that Fring operates as a drug front—featuring Fring himself, which caused Breaking Bad fans to lose their minds.

Esposito confirmed his return at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour in Pasadena, Calif., when he appeared in character as Fring during AMC's panel for Better Call Saul, and handed out boxes of Los Pollos Hermanos chicken to reporters.

The actor told Adweek that he came up with the idea for last week's pitch-perfect Los Pollos Hermanos spot himself. It's been gestating for years, Esposito said, since he first appeared on Breaking Bad in 2009.

"I always say it was divinely guided, because it came out of a meditation. I always knew from the time I first started working at Pollos Hermanos that there might be some juice in doing something that was centered in the restaurant, that was commercial-like," said Esposito. "But when I thought of it earlier on, with Breaking Bad, it just didn't fit" with that show's dramatic tone.

The idea resurfaced again as he began filming Better Call Saul. "It came back to me two or three weeks ago, and I thought, this is the perfect way to tease a Gus Fring return. Because this show has some comedy in it. It's a little funnier than Breaking Bad was," said Esposito.

But still, the actor hesitated to share his vision with the show's co-creators Vince Gilligan (who also created Breaking Bad) and Peter Gould. "We're dealing with Sony [which produces Saul] and Vince Gilligan, who's a genius, and AMC, and I thought, 'Will they ever accept that idea? And then I thought, it doesn't matter whether they do or not, it came to you; put it out there!' So I did, and I even guided them as to what it might look like."

Gilligan and Gould were on board. "We loved it, and fortunately, AMC decided to make it," said Gould. "We just sat back and enjoyed it." Added Gilligan, "I thought that was brilliant. … I love this thing."

After getting the green light, "The writers took it and ran with it, and they said yes and made it. For me, it was a dream come true, because it allowed me to exercise a different part of my creativity," said Esposito.

The spot did actually run on late-night TV in Albuquerque, N.M., where Better Call Saul (and Breaking Bad before it) is set and filmed. "Can you imagine being up at 2 a.m. and that thing comes on?" said Bob Odenkirk, who stars as Jimmy McGill, the man who will eventually become Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad.

"That was the point: Did I just see that, or did I dream it?" said Gilligan. Esposito himself stayed up to watch the spot when it aired, as he hadn't seen it in advance. However, it was harder to track the ad down than he had expected. "I'm up and I realized there are like five local Albuquerque channels, and I'm scrolling through all of them, trying to find the commercial," Esposito said.

Since the spot went viral last week, Esposito said his manager has been fielding phone calls "from Burger King and other people, wanting to know if I would advertise their product as Gus."

Gus Again When Gus Fring appears on Better Call Saul this season, he won't be exactly like the character audiences remember from Breaking Bad. "We are at a time where he's a little more immature than where we left off. So I'm reminding myself that he's still finding his way as the businessman that he is … and where he was with regards to the cartel," said Esposito.

The actor admitted he lobbied Gilligan for Gus Fring to star in a prequel of his own. "I mentioned that it would be wonderful for me to realize a show or something called The Rise of Gus, because I think there's enough backstory within Gus to support that. Hint hint! But that didn't stop me from wanting to be a part of this particular group," said Esposito.

Gilligan and Gould first teased Fring's return last season on Better Call Saul, as the first letters of each Season 2 episode spelled out "FRING'S BACK." But fans cracked the code much quicker than they anticipated.

"We thought we were being oh-so-clever coming up with that hidden message in the titles. Yeah, right up there with the Enigma code in World War II! It got figured out in something like 14 seconds," said Gilligan. "We knew the audience was smarter than we were. We didn't know just by how many IQ points."

Posted: Sun 15th of January, 2017

Adweek : Technology

AOL's New 360° and Live Video Studio Is a 'Physical Embodiment of Native Advertising'

Imagine designing one building that could accomplish this two-part mission: First, make one of the oldest digital brands cool once again. Second, secure the future of branded content.

Has such a building been created? Time will tell, but that's certainly the hope of Build Studio, AOL's flashy new mini-concert destination and content creation hub.

This week, the Verizon-owned media company officially opened Build, a 13,412-square-foot studio in lower Manhattan that will become the stage for all sorts of interviews, performances and events shot both live and with 360-degree video.

Build, which was announced last year during AOL's presentation at the Digital Content NewFronts, aims to attract a younger audience to AOL properties, both with the types of guests that will be featured and by having a street-facing studio to attract anyone passing by.

The idea is to take the content filmed at Build and then repurpose some of it for other channels like Twitter, YouTube and Facebook. According to AOL vp of monetization Jesse Chambers, the space "opens up a lot of avenues" to create consumer experiences in partnership with brands.

"We view this space, this studio, as a physical embodiment of native advertising," Chambers told Adweek. "That allows us to do quite a bit both digitally and physically in the space, which is what we're really excited about."

From a digital standpoint, Chambers said AOL is moving away from traditional pre-roll or mid-roll spots and instead using something it calls "Player Up." He said the format, which launched last week at CES, is a "consumer-friendly alternative to pre-roll" that plays a short 3- to 7-second branded bumper ad. After the ad plays, it moves to the bottom corner of the screen where a brand's logo will swap back and forth with the AOL Build logo while the concert or interview content plays. Then, when a user pauses the content, the brand's image will once again appear front and center until the user resumes playing the content.

While Chambers said the company has been in talks with brands who might want to partner for future performances, he said sponsorships likely won't just be a traditional type of content partnership. For example, alcohol brands and other beverage companies might sponsor the drinks at the downstairs bar, or a makeup brand might sponsor what's being used in the green room. (There are also video screens both inside and outside the studio, which Chambers said can be used to display brands' messaging.)

In addition to AOL, other publishing brands within Verizon's portfolio might soon start using the studio. Chambers said AOL livestreamed 12,000 events from its previous Build space within AOL's headquarters at 770 Broadway. Partner brands sponsoring content could also potentially use the studio moving in the future.

"We wanted to build the space, wanted to get used to the new environment, and have these partner brands have the experience of the space as well so they can create these customized, authentic experiences here with us. We talk at AOL about building brands that people love, and that extends not only to our own owned and operated brands, but also to our partner brands, too."

A green room inside AOL's Build studio in lower Manhattan, which opened this week. Build Studio

Posted: Fri 13th of January, 2017

Expedia's New VR Film Takes You on a Scenic Railroad Journey in Norway

If you've been wanting to take a trip to Norway, Expedia has a new 360-degree virtual reality film that may inspire you to book a flight—and then book a train ticket when you get there. 

Expedia Norway is partnering with Visit Flåm (the tourist organization for Flåm, a scenic Norwegian village) and Flåm Railway while working with London-based agency Verve Search. The online travel site is taking its first swing at VR by offering digital viewers a railroad journey.

The 44-minute video entails fjords, mountains, glaciers, the midnight sun, the northern lights, waterfalls and national parks. Viewers can drag the screen to explore sites from a number of camera angles. The video can be viewed on major-brand VR headsets and glasses in 360 degrees, and it can also be taken in online in a less immersive fashion. (The web experience is available via Chrome and Firefox, but it cannot be accessed via Safari.)

According to Expedia reps, the Flåm Railway is the steepest railway in Europe. Check out the online version of the video below:

 
Posted: Fri 13th of January, 2017

This Flight Tracker Site Is Dropping Some Funny Friday the 13th Tweets About Flight 666 Going to 'HEL'

It's early on Friday the 13th, but Flightradar24 has already set the bar high for Twitter marketing when it comes to having a laugh around this day of superstition. The flight tracking website picked up on a scheduled Finnair flight from Copenhagen, Denmark, to Helsinki, Finland, taking off early afternoon local time (or morning here in the U.S.). 

Flightradar24's social media marketers—a team of two—struck contextual gold when they noticed the flight's number and destination. "HEL" is the abbreviation for Helsinki Airport.

Would you dare to sit in row 13, on board @Finnair flight 666 en route to HEL on Friday the 13th?https://t.co/lKujhSu0gP pic.twitter.com/fWIvQTMLjF

— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) January 13, 2017

Then, they got a bit of help from a Twitter user named Chris Limb (@catmachine) in Brighton, England. 

As @catmachine just pointed out the aircraft is 13 years old as well! https://t.co/P81dYXuR56

— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) January 13, 2017

A couple of hours later, the plane landed at its HEL destination between the 13:00 and 14:00 hours, which Flightradar24 had a little more fun with.

✈️️ Finnair flight 666, at 13 o'clock on Friday the 13th with a 13 year old aircraft, has landed safely in HELhttps://t.co/0kWfkcARmO pic.twitter.com/OPvpyyq4F4

— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) January 13, 2017

Even better, all of the in-jokery put forth by Flightradar24 was essentially true. And it garnered close to 5,000 likes and retweets with the trio of messages.

Flightradar24's team wasn't done yet, trying to add another layer of superstition to the fun thread of tweets. 

Hello @CPHAirports and @HelsinkiAirport Can you confirm if flight #AY666 departed from and arrived to gate 13? https://t.co/xJmyBM3JwU

— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) January 13, 2017

@flightradar24 @CPHAirports Arrival to gate 25. Gate 13 would have been a match made in HEL. Posted: Fri 13th of January, 2017

The Obamas Gave an Intimate Behind-the-Scenes Virtual Reality Tour of the White House

In exactly one week, the Obamas will move out of the White House.

After eight years, President Barack Obama and his family will move to a new home as his time in office comes to an end. But before it does, the First Family wanted to give the public one last tour of its home—but this time in virtual reality.

Felix and Paul Studios, working alongside Facebook's Oculus team and the Obama administration, has spent months shooting an intimate behind-the-scenes tour of the White House to give viewers a more detailed look at what it means to live at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. The eight-minute version of the film, which debuts today, will be followed sometime next year with a longer 20-minute film.

The film, called The People's House, includes commentary from the Obamas for each of the rooms and the connections they share with them while also exploring how the rooms were used by past presidents. In the film, Obama talks about being in the situation room during the raid of Osama bin Laden's compound, but he also recalls President John F. Kennedy's use of it during the Cuban missile crisis.

The film—which is available on Oculus VR headsets and Facebook 360-degree video—provides more access to the White House than you would receive if you visited in person for a guided tour. For example, the West Wing isn't necessarily part of the average tour (for obvious reasons). In the VR tour, visitors get to see the Cabinet Room, Situation Room, Oval Office, along with the Roosevelt Room, Vice President Joe Biden's office and more of the executive residence on the second and third floors.

For the film, both Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama spent around 15 minutes with the VR production team, where they sat in a room of their choosing and explained what it means to them. In other parts of the film, the Obamas narrate the tour as viewers makes their way through the house occupied by U.S. presidents since the country's earliest days.

Over the past eight years, the Obamas have sought to open and enhance access to the White House to visitors. While paying tribute to Michelle Obama during his farewell address this week, the president said she "made the White House a place that belongs to everybody."

The tour of the White House is actually Obama's second VR film produced by Felix and Paul. Last year, to coincide with the centennial of the National Parks Service, they released a film of the president taking a tour of Yosemite National Park.

According to filmmaker Félix Lajeunesse, the co-founder of Felix and Paul, the film fits into the long tradition of presidents using technology to connect with the public. He mentioned the Diplomatic Room, where President Franklin D. Roosevelt used to broadcast dozens of "fireside chats" over the radio. Lajeunesse mentioned Obama's use of VR is part of Obama's trend to embrace new technologies like social media, YouTube and podcasts.

"It kind of feels like a natural progression of that to engage with virtual reality and try to make people feel what it's like to live in the White House," Lajeunesse said. "It's very transparent, very genuine. I think it fits with his personality and everything that he's done before."

After filming at the White House on and off over the course of a few months, it sometimes felt like being in a museum, Lajeunesse said. At other times, the White House seemed more like an office or home.

"When you spend a lot of time there, you realize the White House is a historical institution, where a lot of history has unfolded, but it's also a working place," he said. "There are a lot of people working there and a lot of things going on of course. And it's also a house and a private space. So it compiles all of those different layers of functionality and meaning, and when you spend a lot of time there you start to get a taste of the different meanings."

Posted: Fri 13th of January, 2017

GE Just Launched a Branded Virtual Reality Series About Science

GE, hoping to bridge a storyline between science and art, has just debuted a new documentary miniseries in virtual reality.

This week, the tech company released the first of five films that aim to show a different side of innovation beyond just labs. Shot by Here Be Dragons, the series—"The Possible"—aims to let people see the possibilities of science and tech within real-world settings. The films let viewers cruise across salt atop land speeders, fly high in the air on hoverboards and walk through the woods and in the lab with robots built by Boston Dynamics. (The first film," Hello Robot," debuted today on Within, an app that houses VR content from Here Be Dragons, The New York Times, United Nations, Vice and others.)

As a collaborator of the series, each film also comes with a post-roll companion VR film showing how GE helps "make the impossible, 'unimpossible.'"

"Sometimes you see something and it doesn't need to be in virtual reality," Alexa Christon, GE's head of media innovation, told Adweek. "VR is a really immersive experience, and to be able to get close to these things, to stand next to one of Boston Dynamic's robots just lends itself to a virtual reality experience."

At an event in lower Manhattan on Tuesday night, GE and Within gave demos of the films. But instead of having individuals put on headsets one after the next, the experience was set up more like a collection of mini-movie theaters, with anywhere from a handful to a few dozen people watching the same movie at the same time. (Each area also had a fourth dimension—water, wind or some other element—to help provide a slightly more immersive feel to the film.)

Speaking at the premiere, Filmmaker Chris Milk—who co-founded Here Be Dragons along with Patrick Milling Smith (producer of the hit Broadway musical Once)—said that all other storytelling mediums have been external experiences witnessed frame-by-frame. Within found co-founded by Milk and CTO Aaron Koblin.

"You see a movie and it's the story of two people in some other place than the theater you're currently sitting in, that this thing happened to them at some point in time," Milk said. "And that's the same for theater, it's the same for literature, it's the same for sitting around the fire in a cave. This is a show [where] we have told stories from the beginning, and I think what is so unique about virtual reality as a medium is it's a story about us here now."

Here Be Dragons is no stranger to VR. In fact, over the past couple of years, the production company formerly known as Vrse.Works has created VR experiences with USA Network (for Mr. Robot), The New York Times, Bono and Nike.

Milk said that while VR still has its own limitations—viewers still can't walk around within a scene or talk to its characters—that will soon change as technology gets better. He said in the near future, it will become even closer to another medium we're all familiar with: our real life.

"Our social bonds are built through shared experiences, and the most powerful experiences," he said. "It's not me at the fire and the cave; it's you and your clan at the fire in the cave. We go to the movies together, we go on vacation together, and we have these shared experiences together."

Virtual reality as a medium has been touted time and time again as a way to build empathy, but it's also been criticized as a way to build isolation. (After all, it's tough to interact with the people around you while wearing a big headset and headphones.) However, he said watching film with others can help change that. 

That's partially what's prompting GE to try out the medium. While GE isn't necessarily doing as much in the VR space like its competitors such as Intel or Lenovo, Christon said using the medium still helps reach early adopters who might be interested in GE's other endeavors. 

"Imagination at work goes all the way through to how we think about that as well. Is the medium as important as the message? Absolutely it is," she said. "I think the industry is in a really interesting place where experience is becoming really paramount piece. Experience and experiential is becoming really paramount of how a brand shows up."

For the series, GE also created its own VR film. Watch one of them "Fighting Fire With Fire," on YouTube. (For the full experience, pull open the YouTube mobile app and turn around in 360 degrees.)

Posted: Thu 12th of January, 2017

Canada's Prime Minister Just Took Part in Snapchat’s First Q&A Live Story With a Politician

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to Snapchat today to answer questions in a Live Story, a collection of user-generated photos and videos gathered at events.

Trudeau answered seven questions from college students ranging from how he plans to make college more accessible for middle-class families to what hair products he uses and what he would bring with him to an island.

While Snapchat has done similar Q&As with Kevin Hart and Selena Gomez, today's story is the first time a politician has participated in one, possibly indicating that more elected officials will use the app as a communications platform.

Whether or not President-elect Donald Trump's administration moves from Twitter to Snapchat in the coming months will be interesting to watch, but today's story with Trudeau indicated that at least some politicians are willing to talk about hefty issues via the app.

When one woman asked what policy changes Trudeau anticipated, "particularly with foreign policy with the U.S.," Trudeau used the app's self-facing camera to respond. "Our new foreign minister Chrystia Freeland has deep connections and contacts with the United States, which is going to help with the incoming, new administration," the prime minister said, "but at the same time has taken some very strong stances against the Russian interference in Crimea in favor of global trade."

Snapchat users in Canada, the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and the U.K. can watch the story until Friday afternoon at 4 p.m. Pacific time.

Posted: Thu 12th of January, 2017

9 Particularly Interesting Digital Marketing Stats From This Week

The past few days saw the digital marketing world awaken from its postholiday slumber and really put out some eye-opening stats.

Check out the nine that grabbed our attention this week:

1. Breaking down our social era Sixty-nine percent of U.S. adults are now social media users, according to data from the Pew Research Center. The Social Times reported that figure while also stating that Pew found 86 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds patronize Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Pinterest or other social platforms. That number slips to 80 percent for people between 30 and 49, to 64 percent for 50- to 64-year-olds and to 34 percent for folks 65 and older. 2. Young adults still enjoy bricks and mortar  So millennials love social, but what about ecommerce? IBM researched 15,000 Gen Z shoppers, a group it said represents $44 billion in buying power. Big Blue discovered that despite living a digital life, 98 percent of of that demo shop in stores.

3. Skippable is chill Last month, LaunchLeap surveyed U.S. millennial internet users about YouTube ads and found that 59 percent skip branded clips as soon as they can. Meanwhile, 29 percent said they watch YouTube ads until completion. The Montreal-based online survey company also found that 11 percent of the Gen Y crowd were blocking YouTube spots with ad blockers. 

4. Impressive story, Instagram Instagram on Wednesday announced it is starting to let brands advertise in between its 24-hour video stories section even though the feature just launched in August. Why already? Well, why not? The scale is there—the Facebook-owned app revealed that 150 million people have been using Instagram stories daily. That represents a 50-million-user increase in just three months. 

5. Snap to it While 64 percent of marketers have a Snapchat account, only 67 percent of those accounts are active, according to an extensive report from research firm L2. The researcher tracked 427 brands in categories including fashion, autos, beverages and consumer-packaged goods across eight social platforms and detailed their social activity from January 2016 through October 2016.   

6. Gaining FANs The Facebook Audience Network, or FAN, now has more than 1 billion people viewing its cross-web advertising every month, with 83 percent of the ads being native, Facebook said today. Many publishers—including newest additions Wenner Media, The Washington Post and Daily Mirror—sell advertising via FAN to lift revenue.   7. Live video is red-carpet hot Roughly 2.7 million Twitter users on Sunday evening viewed the digital platform's red carpet livestreaming collaboration with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and Dick Clark Productions for the 74th Golden Globe Awards. The new Fox reality TV cooking show My Kitchen Rules, which premieres Thursday, was a lead advertiser for the live video, while brands like Cigna, Whole Foods and HBO also made appearances. A Dick Clark Productions rep said such marketers saw 10 times more impressions than they were promised. 

For Twitter, the number represents a healthy follow-up to the few million viewers it got during recent Thursday Night Football games in its deal with the NFL. 

The most recent three #TNF games reached >3M viewers, up >28% from #TWTR's inaugural game w/ 2.35M viewers. #TWTR

— TwitterIR (@TwitterIR) October 27, 2016

8. Please quit tweeting, Mr. Soon-to-Be President According to a survey of nearly 1,000 U.S. adults released Tuesday by Quinnipiac University, 64 percent said they think President-elect Donald Trump should quit Twitter and give up his 19.4 million followers when he becomes president. That doesn't seem likely, though.

9. Sonic marketers Here's a fun one: Affinio said it looked at the top five quick-serve brands in the U.S.—McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's, Dairy Queen and Sonic—and dug up which ones were most popular with digital marketers. Check out the results below:

Bonus stat: The digitized town This data point is a little older, but it's still worth noting: Persistence Market Research last week stated that smart cities—as a marketplace—will grow from $622 billion now to $1 trillion market in 2019 before reaching $3.48 trillion by 2026.

Posted: Thu 12th of January, 2017

BuzzFeed Raised $25,000 for Committee to Protect Journalists With 'Garbage' Merchandise

Donald Trump has yet again succeeded in supporting journalists despite every effort not to.

Toward the end of his press conference Wednesday morning, Trump referred to BuzzFeed as a "failing pile of garbage." This came after BuzzFeed published the entire set of salacious documents that other media companies had declined to publish for months. (Earlier on Tuesday night, CNN wrote about the documents without showing them to the public, stressing their importance. BuzzFeed followed by publishing the full, unverified report.)

Then on Wednesday afternoon, BuzzFeed quickly launched a limited-time collection in its merchandise shop: Our Failing Pile Of Garbage. The sale ran through midnight, and offered bumper stickers, a T-shirt and even a small garbage can.

As the site promised, proceeds of the "garbage" sales will be donated to the Committee to Protect Journalists, a nonprofit organization that also recently received a shout-out from Meryl Streep during her Golden Globes acceptance speech last weekend.

A BuzzFeed spokesperson confirmed that the company raised $25,000 for the CPJ. 

"We appreciate BuzzFeed's continued generosity and support in our mission, which is to promote press freedom worldwide by defending the rights of all journalists to work without fear of reprisal," said the CPJ.

BuzzFeed's quick response to Trump's jab was largely led by Ben Kaufman and his Product Lab team. Kaufman joined BuzzFeed last year and has been the force behind other ecommerce products, like his line of Homesick candles and the shop for people who like to swear.

Trump previously helped journalists by giving Vanity Fair it's largest day of subscription sales ever after attacking its editor, Graydon Carter, on Twitter.

Posted: Thu 12th of January, 2017

The Facebook Audience Network Now Serves Ads to 1 Billion People Each Month

While Facebook has had 1 billion users on its social network for quite some time, it now has more than 1 billion people viewing its advertising network.

Today, the company announced that more than 1 billion people see an ad thorough its Facebook Audience Network every month. The company says the total—which is primarily a mobile audience—allows advertisers who opt into the network to reach 16 percent more than they can on Facebook's flagship project. FAN, as its called, lets advertisers reach consumers off of Facebook while still still using the same targeting data.

FAN has grown quickly over the past year. In January 2016, Facebook added in the mobile web to its audience network, and in the Q4 2015, it already was on track to have an annual advertising run rate of $1 billion.

"We talk about reaching a billion people every month, and these are real people," said Brian Boland, vp of publisher solutions at Facebook. "We're not talking about cookies or browsers or devices or ID, where one person can look like six things. We're talking about legitimately 1 billion people that can be reached on the audience network."

Facebook has also been adding more publishers along the way, announcing today the addition of publishers including Wenner Media and The Washington Post. Other newly added global publishers include Blackberry Messenger in Indonesia, the Daily Mirror in the United Kingdom, Univision in the U.S. and India Today Group in India.

Boland said advertisers are also seeing better results than they do on just Facebook itself. He mentioned a campaign by Visa that was aimed at promoting Visa Checkout for paying online. By advertising on FAN, he said Visa expanded reach by 15 percent, an in another activation, Visa's customer acquisition was more than 2.5 times as cost efficient. In a campaign for Universal Music, Facebook's audience network drove brand lift awareness by 10 percent.

While 83 percent of ads running through the audience network are native, Boland said video is quickly growing as well. He said video consumption at the end of 2016 was up more than 10 times what it was at the beginning of last year. While Facebook is touting its 1 billion mark, it's tough to tell how quickly FAN—which opened to marketers in October 2014—got to where it is today. Boland declined to provide any benchmarks for how many people viewed FAN ads prior to today.

Facebook has also been extending the measurement capabilities. In November, Facebook announced it was beginning to wind down its Atlas ad serving platform and would fold it into measurement offerings instead.

"Measurement is the most important thing for advertisers to get right in the next couple of years," Boland said.

Posted: Thu 12th of January, 2017

Suddenly, Home Automation Is All the Rage Among Millennial Men on Facebook

Maybe the era of the Internet of Things is upon us. Chatter about home automation has recently increased by more than eight times year over year on Facebook, mostly driven by the chatter of millennial men.

The terms "security" and "security alarm" are among the associated topics with home automation on Facebook. So brands like ADT and Frontpoint may want to take note in planning to target young dudes who own homes. Marketers for Amazon Echo and FitBit—both IoT subjects that are also trending—should consider these findings as well.

We learned these things from Facebook IQ's latest data chart called Topics to Watch, which is designed to help marketers know what subjects to look out for on the social network. The topics are based on trending data, and Adweek readers get an exclusive look at them each month.

The latest edition also includes interesting insights to the trending subjects of downtempo music and tunics/fashion accessories. 

Check out the full findings of this month's Topics to Watch below:

 

Facebook IQ's predictive tools analyze the long-term consistent growth of a topic on Facebook. Using data from hundreds of thousands of conversations, the social network said it's able to forecast what discussions will continue to escalate based on how other topics normally trend upward in volume, variance and rates of consistent growth. When predicting whether chatter around specific topics will increase, Facebook stated that early tests have been 80 percent accurate.

Posted: Thu 12th of January, 2017