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Posts Tagged ‘Heineken’

Smartphone Breathalyzer Startup Partners with…Heineken?

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At first we thought that a partnership between one of the world’s largest beer brands and a startup using technology to prevent drunk driving would make for an awkward pairing.

Yet, earlier this month, an Israeli company called Alcohoot whose product turns smartphones into breathalyzers joined forces with Heineken and won a bit of corporate coverage in the process. How so?

The company’s founders pitched the product as something that would help the company more fully embody its own “drink responsibly” message.

Their backstory was fairly compelling too.

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Now Guinness Is Dropping Out of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Due To Its Anti-Gay Policy

st. patty's paradeBeer and St. Patrick’s Day go together like peanut butter and jelly. But some beer companies are breaking up this happy pairing because of the anti-LGBT policy associated with the holiday’s big events. On Friday, Heineken announced that they were pulling their sponsorship of the St. Patrick’s Day parade taking place today at 11am in New York City (it says it’s the world’s largest and oldest parade). And the makers of Sam Adams, the Boston Beer Company, said it was done with the South Boston parade.

Now we have word that Guinness is also pulling its sponsorship of the New York parade. This after the iconic bar Stonewall Inn said it wouldn’t sell the beer for St. Patty’s because of its support.

The City Council and Mayor Bill de Blasio also said they wouldn’t be participating because of the policy.

Guinness released the following statement about the move:

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11 Brands That Got Cheeky on Valentine’s Day

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FACT: Valentine’s Day is one of the few bright spots in an otherwise dour New Year for retailers.

Of course it makes sense for relevant brands to develop tailored VDay social campaigns, so today we thought we’d take a look back at some of the cheekier ones we noticed last week.

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Will the Public Belly Up to Sam Adams in a Can?

Believe it or not, there was a day in America when “fancy pants” beer meant Heineken. An import from Holland, Heineken was like the truffles of beer and changed the complexion of your Dad’s garage refrigerator from the red, white and blue of Budweiser and gold of Coors to an electric green.

But then Sam Adams, using a recipe developed in 1860, came along and changed everything in the mid-90′s, starting a microbrew craze that continues to sweep across America and spurring the craft beer obsession that has altered the landscape and language of our beer culture. Cask ale, anyone? Only $14 per bottle!

The American public has always had an intriguing relationship with beer. Even as U.S. beer drinkers and the beverage they love have grown more sophisticated and worldly, our society stubbornly refuses to let beer become the domain of the 1%.

Some examples: Miller High Life implemented a hilarious ad campaign featuring a delivery guy who lambasted pretentious beer drinkers. And hipsters managed to pull off one of the great ironic miracles of our time by making Pabst Blue Ribbon cool again (OK, the recession probably helped too).

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Turning Heineken into the World’s ‘Most Interesting’ Beer

HeinekenFirst a disclaimer: Like the rest of the country, we love beer. In fact, we are unapologetic beer snobs. And while Heineken is a classic brand that works in a pinch, we find it to be a bit…lacking in the taste department (hey, to each his own, right?).

Why do we tell you this? Because these facts leave us even more impressed by today’s eMarketer interview with Heineken marketing director Lesya Lysyj, in which she discusses her brand’s huge Skyfall campaign, designed to turn a workaday brew into the world’s “most interesting” beer.

Did you know that Heineken’s Facebook page has more likes and greater user engagement ratings than any other alcohol brand? Neither did we! Lysysj describes Facebook as “a little research tool”, calls user engagement the most important metric around and explains her brand philosophy for Newcastle (another beer that’s been very successful in the digital world) as a “brutal honesty” campaign featuring taglines like “Newcastle Winter Ale. Our worst selling beer in the summer. #NoBollocks”. We like it!

The best part of the interview concerns the Heineken Skyfall campaign, a multimedia mystery designed to appeal to the company’s ideal customer (the “vibrant explorer”) with an interactive game/social app created after research told Heineken something that we all know: lots of people use mobile devices while watching TV. The idea was to create an ad spot that would encourage beer fans to immediately download the app and “Crack the Code.”

Surprise surprise: it worked. Check out the video to see why:

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Spin the Agencies of Record

Friendly’s Ice Cream selected Regan Communications Group Inc. as its public relations agency of record. The Boston-based restaurant chain emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in January after closing 100 shops and laying off thousands of workers.

Sun Capital Partners, a Florida-based private-equity firm co-run by Marc Leder (who hosted the fund-raiser where Mitt Romney made his infamous “47 percent” comment) took the 76-year-old ice cream chain into bankruptcy in October 2011, shed its pensions and downsized and then repurchased the chain through an affiliate.

ShopPR has been chosen as AOR for Keds, the American lifestyle brand established in 1916. ShopPR will be responsible for social/digital marketing and public relations; for its first assignment this October, the agency helped Keds introduce its multi-year partnership with six-time Grammy winning singer-songwriter and style icon Taylor Swift.

“We’re so thrilled and proud to be working with Keds”, said Vanessa Pesce, Managing Director of ShopPR. “We’re inspired by the way Keds is encouraging girls to reach their full potential, and we also look forward to promoting the brand’s iconic styles.”

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Is James Bond Too Corporate?

On the eve of the new 007 flick Skyfall, The Wall Street Journal asks an interesting question: has “the mother and father of all franchises” (thanks, David Denby) turned into a big, disgusting orgy of product placement? Is James Bond a sexy spy or just a not-so-secret spokesman for Heineken, Omega, Sony, Adidas and, of course, Aston Martin? And have these obvious sponsorships damaged the series’ credibility?

Hmm…we’ll spend Saturday afternoon pondering that one. Next week in Questions That Matter:

  • Are puppies too adorable?
  • Are chocolate chip cookies too delicious?
  • Are cumulus clouds too white and fluffy?
  • Is the nameMiss Pussy Galore Honey Rider Solitaire Plenty O’Toole May Day Xenia Onatopp Holly Goodhead Tiffany Case Kissy Suzuki Mary Goodnight Jinx Johnson Octopussy Domino Moneypenny” too subtle?

We await your answers with bated breath.

Olympics Ads Boost Brand Perceptions for BP and Others

A recent survey conducted by YouGov BrandIndex in order to gauge the public’s perceptions of Olympics advertisers may prove that the coveted ad slots and expensive sponsorships are worthy investments, especially for certain brands with PR problems.

According to Ad Age, surveyors posed the same question for each brand: “If you’ve heard anything about the brand in the last two weeks, through advertising, news or word of mouth, was it positive or negative?” YouGov then derived scores ranging from 100 to -100 by subtracting negative feedback from positive (For instance, a score of zero means a brand received equal parts positive and negative feedback).

Oil company and international pariah BP, whose public image has soured since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf Of Mexico, reportedly saw its score jump from a negative 5.9 in the week prior to the Olympics to a positive 2.6 during the first week of the games thanks to ads like this one. Only Visa, which, according to YouGov, spent $100 million to be a “Worldwide Olympic Partner”, saw its brand perception rise more during the same time period. Ted Marzilli, global managing director for YouGov’s BrandIndex service, told Ad Age, “We have seen the recovery with BP over the last year and a half…but I think its association with the Olympics is showing benefits.”

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James Bond to Drink Heineken, Would Rather Have a Martini

Daniel Craig, the latest actor to play James Bond, has called the partnership with Heineken “unfortunate,” but says he understands that the financial demands of a big movie require product placement. Not exactly a ringing endorsement for a sponsor that could be paying as much as $45 million for the privilege.

“This movie costs a lot of money to make, it costs nearly as much again if not more to promote, so we go where we can,” Craig told Moviefone.com.

Ad Age first reported that Heineken signed on with the latest Bond movie, Skyfall, which will be out November 9. Bond will sip the beer in at least one scene of the movie, appear on packaging, and will be in an ad. CMO Lesya Lysyj says the partnership is “a perfect fit” despite the fact that Bond is known for drinking his martinis “shaken, not stirred.”

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Roll Call: Heineken, Viacom, and More

Heineken USA has named Stacey Tank as SVP of corporate relations starting January 3. Tank was previously the head of corporate relations for G.E.’s $6 billion “Healthymagination” program and led the company’s 2011 launch of a $1 billion international cancer campaign.

Entertainment publicist Scotty Dugan died suddenly on Wednesday as he was en route to the funeral of music exec, film producer, and event promotions exec John Atterberry. Atterberry was gunned down in Hollywood on December 9. Witnesses say Dugan collapsed while waiting for a train. Dugan started as a reporter, working his way up to editor at The Hollywood Reporter before launching his own PR firm. He was handling PR for Atterberry’s indie Christian film God’s Country. [via THR]

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