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Posts Tagged ‘Funny or Die’

Two Recent Breast Cancer Awareness Campaigns That Confuse Us

Over the past few years, a fair amount of controversy has surrounded Breast Cancer Awareness Month and many of its related campaigns — Susan G. Komen‘s PR troubles, the question of whether the disease suffers from “overawareness“, discussions about how fundraising dollars can best be used, and heated debate over the benefits and risks of screenings have landed related campaigns in a scrutinizing spotlight. While we aren’t going to delve into all of the debates here (because we’d never do the subject the justice this New York Times article does), we did want to share our two cents about a couple of campaigns we’ve come across this year that have either inspired “WTF moments” or at least made us wonder about their usefulness.

First, we’ve seen the below image pop up all over Facebook during the past two weeks. If you’ve seen it and didn’t bat an eye, or if you saw it and shared it, kindly take a second, closer look.

Facebook

Questionable use of capital and lowercase letters aside, what is with the first line? “Support Breast cancer.” Really? Not “support awareness”; not “support research”; not “support screenings”, but this ad would just have us support the disease itself?

Furthermore, what does “setting your tatas free” actually accomplish, other than making car rides, stairs and jogging uncomfortable? This just doesn’t seem to have been thought through all the way, and falls under the category of “Hey, it’s October — better do something booby-related whether or not it makes sense or helps anyone.” Read more

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AriZona Iced Tea Refuses to Thank Miley Cyrus for Free Product Placement

27a5acb329909a4aa4e7a5a38772f263_width_640xYes, it’s her again. We know.

This week Funny or Die jumped on the dumb Sinead O’Connor/Miley Cyrus spat by posting a mildly clever “open letter” from AriZona Iced Tea‘s “marketing guy” which thanked the young Ms. Cyrus for using a can as a prop in her Terry Richardson “make me look like a porn star” photo shoot. The letter includes such salient points as:

I don’t encourage my daughters to walk around naked posing with cans of iced tea, but that’s only because they’re not famous…

Thank you for taking a picture with the label out so people can see that 99 cents for a tall can of iced tea is a great value (even for you).

…along with some naughty words that we won’t repeat here.

Read more

Here’s a More Accurate Version of Chipotle’s ‘Scarecrow’ Campaign

When posting on Chipotle‘s impressive new campaign last week, we noted a few contradictions. The company wants to define itself as the anti-”Big Food” brand, but it’s a fast food chain once partially owned by McDonald’s. And while the chickens in your burrito may be “food with integrity (TM)”, they most certainly did not live idyllic lives just hanging out on the farm before they generously decided to become your dinner.

All this conversation inspired Funny or Die to make a parody video, and it might be the best clip we’ve seen from them so far.

Seems like someone wasn’t too impressed with the original.

The campaign is brilliant, but it also implies that Chipotle is a humane or even “vegetarian” organization. That’s not an outright lie, because the team that created it wouldn’t be so careless, but its purpose is to tie the brand to a lifestyle that doesn’t quite match by softening the audience’s perception of the meat production process.

This isn’t to say that Chipotle is evil. We ate one of their burritos last night, and it was delicious. But the parody is a clever reminder, in case you needed one, that content marketing is still marketing and that the end goal is still sales, no matter how nice it might make you feel.

Branded Content in Action: Luna Bar’s ‘Debunking the Diet’ Series

Two very interesting food biz facts:

  1. Nutrition bars are one of the “three fastest growing foods in the country” along with yogurt and–in case you thought we’d all gone healthy–potato chips. 
  2. Luna Bar now dominates the “nutrition bars for women” market despite the fact that company spent a paltry $122,000 on advertising in 2011.

How do they do it? Great PR and branding. Luna’s latest venture into the world of branded content may be its most effective: In a web short series titled “Debunking the Diet,” Luna brings its new “Feed Your Strength” tagline to life, asking women on the street for their thoughts on common dietary myths before bringing in nutritional experts to sort the facts from the fictions. Here’s the first episode, which deals with the common belief that it’s unhealthy to eat after 8:

Impressive, right? The series is a great case study in the value of high-quality branded content. Here’s the deal:

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Roll Call: Northern Lights Direct, NCM Media Networks, TBWA Paris, and More

As part of its strategic growth plans, Northern Lights Direct will relocate its Chicago office. The move to the new, larger office space will help the agency service its expanding U.S. client roster. “The move is exciting for us…[it] represents an important milestone,” says CEO Sandy French. “It will also allow us to continue providing the personalized, high-level service to our U.S. clients that we are known for.” (Release)

Stephen Ochs joined National CineMedia’s NCM Media Networks (NCM) as senior vice president of marketing. In his new role based in NCM’s New York office, Ochs will oversee all marketing for the company’s cinema advertising sales division. He will also be involved in the further integration of NCM Media Networks’ digital and mobile presence, as well as managing NCM’s pioneering content partnerships with brands like Vevo and Funny or Die. (Release)

Wendy Bronfin, formerly director of product management for Nook at Barnes & Noble, is leaving to become SVP of consumer products and marketing at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt on November 26. (Publishing Trends)

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Jimmy Kimmel Leads the Charge into a New Era of Late Night

Late night TV just got a wake-up call. ABC has announced that Jimmy Kimmel , best known as the co-host of “Win Ben Stein’s Money” (we kid) will soon compete with icons David Letterman and Jay Leno in the coveted 11:35pm time slot. ABC’s strategy is based on a stark but undeniable fact: As Letterman and Leno age, so do their viewers. Letterman, in fact, has agreed only to extend his contract through 2014–just long enough to best Johnny Carson’s on-air record—and Leno recently consented to a much-publicized pay cut and staff reduction.

But this isn’t your father’s 11:35pm time slot. No longer is it a lonely post-news netherworld for budding insomniacs and beleaguered parents looking to steal a drink and a laugh before bed. Today, the nightly monologue must compete with Call of Duty, Twitter surfing, Funny or Die marathons and the endless distractions emanating from our iPads and digital televisions. (At least we can still do all these things with a cocktail in hand.)

With an increase in options, however, comes a decrease in loyalty–and younger generations aren’t bonding with TV personalities like the generations that revered anchors like Walter Cronkite and late night personalities like Johnny Carson. Jimmy Kimmel is staring into the abyss, but he’s cool with that–and he should be. Read more