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Posts Tagged ‘things we assume we won’t like’

Get Ready for the First PR Sitcom

Advertising has had its moment in the pop culture sun in recent years thanks to the efforts of Matthew Weiner and that show starring Buffy and Mrs. Doubtfire that we didn’t watch. The most prominent PR character on TV remains–unfortunately–Samantha Jones.

In case you felt left out, the online “women’s lifestyle publisher” aka gossip blog network PopSugar just announced its plans to develop a scripted sitcom called “Seriously Distracted” that will be set in “a second-string New York PR firm” that is “always one signing away from making it big.”

PopSugar’s president calls it “‘Workaholics’ for our demographic”. We love that show, and this one will be produced by the company behind “SNL” and “Portlandia”, but it doesn’t sound particularly flattering to the discipline. The pilot reportedly centers on “[the] office’s reaction to Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin breaking up.”

We don’t have a preview to show you, but based on the fact that PopSugar “generally attempts to appeal to stereotypical women” (not our words), we imagine it will be something like this:

Maybe a movie would be better?

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Diet Coke Has Taylor Swift and Pepsi Has ‘a Pleasing Aroma’


Two things we learned from Pepsi‘s latest Adventure in Marketing: there is a Scent Marketing Institute and the number two soft drink company just patented a “delivery system” technology designed to “[cause] a favorable aroma” as soon as you open each bottle. The purpose of this brilliant invention is to, you know, counter all the artificial chemical smells of the packaging and the terrible product inside.

Looks like the smell will come from some sort of chemical combo contained in a small gelatin capsule on the inner side of the cap. Remember that gelatin is made of cows, puppies and sunbeams, which means Pepsi will no longer be animal-free. That’s a PR problem waiting to happen, but at least the moo moos aren’t genetically modified!

This might beat Diet Coke‘s skinny Taylor Swift can for sheer ridiculousness. But is it dumber than the new “conforms to your hand” bottle? You be the judge.

Hat tip to Consumerist.

Should Aspiring PR and Marketing Pros Major in Social Media?

Every budding PR/marketing professional aims to master social media, both technically and strategically. But is it really time for social to go academic?

It’s probably too late to ask that question: two schools now offer MBAs in social media, and they certainly won’t be the last.

Southern New Hampshire University‘s Social Media Marketing MBA program promises to help aspiring marketers “embrace the revolution” while students who receive an MBA in Social Media Management from New York’s Excelsior College will be able to “get a head start in a fast-growing sector that’s bursting with opportunities” after finishing a program ”designed with direct input from industry experts.”


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The Friday Dump: Ben Affleck Ruined Your Weekend

Yes he is. And before you ask: sorry, but you are not the only person who immediately tweeted “And Matt Damon will be Robin, right?” We’ll also remind you not to bother contacting the White House; they already blocked the “make it illegal for Ben Affleck to play Batman (or any other superhero) on film for the next 200 years” petition.

It gets better:

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Adventures in Marketing: Polaroid Will Make an ‘Instagram Camera’

As if Instagram weren’t easy enough already, last week we learned that the Socialmatic, aka the “Instagram Camera”, is really going to happen thanks to a deal between an Italian inventor and the folks responsible for the Polaroid name. We find the concept behind this product amusing, but it also represents the latest step in an interesting rebranding experiment.

The old-school camera company went bankrupt more than a decade ago, and the folks who bought the name quickly began making money by licensing it to other brands. PLR IP Holdings, LLC nows owns the rights to all things “Polaroid”. A licensee agreement with Fotobar LLC tied the brand even more closely to the smartphone craze with a planned series of “FotoBar” locations aping the Apple Genius Bar retail model.

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Adventures in Marketing: ‘The Titanic II’

OK, a couple of questions between friends: Do you have a lot of money lying around, ready to be wasted on an exotic “experience”? Does the prospect of life on Mars seem a little too far-fetched for you? Do you have a healthy sense of fatalism and/or a creepy obsession with Leonardo DiCaprio?

If you answered yes to any of the above, then you’re in luck: today some random billionaire named Clive Palmer announced his plans to create an identical working replica of the world’s most famously doomed ship–the Titanic. And it will be ready to set sail by 2016!

Yes, it’s true: The boat, which will be made in China (of course), will weigh more than 55,000 tons, include space for 2,435 passengers and 900 (poorly paid) crew members, and stand as one of the more ridiculous PR stunts in recent memory. But Palmer insists that it will be a “real financial bonanza” that will be so successful that he’ll soon have to work on a third! We’ll see about that…

Say, did anybody notice that this guy is a year too late? Did he miss James Cameron’s imminently punchable face reminding us that 2012 was the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster? More importantly, does he not hate Celine Dion as much as we do?

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Mountain Dew’s Kickstart Wants the Public for Breakfast

It’s not entirely clear why the public holds such disdain for mornings (particularly Monday mornings), but we do.

Perhaps we don’t like having to crawl out of bed, scrub our armpits and then commute alongside a million other bleary-eyed drones to offices lined with fluorescent lights and bad art.

Whatever the underlying reason, the fact remains: most of us aren’t morning people—and brands like Mountain Dew would love nothing more than to provide us with the 8 AM jolt we need to match our socks and/or remember the names of our kids. (Hint: Sock thickness counts. The boy is named after your grandfather and the girl…well, ask your wife.)

It’s also no secret that America is addicted to caffeine. We love it in the form of coffee, tea and especially energy drinks, which have become the get-up-and-go beverage of choice with the younger crowd. What does that mean? Well, while your middle-aged Downton Abbey-loving aunt may prefer a mild French roast with the slightest hint of cream, most of the folks that marketers care about are more interested in sugary shots of carbonated adrenaline like Kickstart, the new breakfast drink from Mountain Dew.

That’s right: Mountain Dew for breakfast.

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Will There Be a Pinterest for Men?

PinterestThe rise of Pinterest was one 2012’s biggest ongoing PR/marketing stories. We recently discussed the social media upstart’s role in the re-branding of print lifestyle magazines and wondered why so many marketers remain skeptical. Last month, Pinterest finally launched business pages, leading to lots of blog posts with headlines like “Is Your Brand on Pinterest? Why Not?”

OK, so everybody needs to look into Pinterest as a marketing tool. One big challenge, though: despite the fact that the company’s founder is a man, its community remains overwhelmingly female—most recent estimates put the ratio at 2:1 or higher, and as of this February a whopping 97 percent of the site’s Facebook fans were women. For some brands this demographic bias works quite well; for others it renders Pinterest all but useless.

To ask the inevitable question: Why don’t we have a “Pinterest for men?”

Well, it’s not for lack of trying—as of today, we’re still getting email pitches from sites positioning themselves as the pinboard of choice for those of the masculine persuasion. Here are a few, along with their taglines:

We see a pattern developing here…

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Should PR Pros Join Google+ Communities?

We have to admit that we haven’t really kept up with Google+ (who has?), but the service made another attempt to encroach upon Facebook’s turf last week by introducing Google+ Communities. Now we know what you’re wondering: How does this affect me (if at all)?

Well, this week saw the creation of several  Google+ groups for PR professionals –and today Muck Rack’s Jess Lawlor took a look at three of the earliest adopters:

  • The Public Relations group, launched by Sarah Evans of Tracky and listed as “A place for PR pros to talk about workflow, tools, tips, etc…”, “will host monthly hangouts featuring PR subject matter experts.”
  • The Online Public Relations group will, of course, concern all things digital with a heavy focus on social media.
  • The UK-based PR and Public Relations group seems a bit more general, but its members have already begun submitting plenty of content.

As you can see, groups continue to spring up at a rapid pace: We’re intrigued by one dedicated to “PR, Marketing and Social Media Measurement”, one all about PR/Advertising Fails, and one that’s more geographically specific (PR Professionals of India).

What do we think of these new PR communities? How long before they turn into the big, spammy mess that LinkedIn groups have become?

Will the Public Go Wild for MTV’s ‘Buckwild’?

Oh boy–here we go again. Just as ‘Jersey Shore’ winds down, MTV plans to fill its time slot with 12 episodes of ‘Buckwild’ beginning in January. If you haven’t heard, this latest version of so-called reality TV will take place in the small town of Sissonville, West Virginia–and it will follow the time-tested MTV formula by encouraging young people to act like idiots. You may be shocked to learn that many West Virginia residents aren’t particularly happy about this development…but how will the public react?

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