After last night, I could write in-depth analysis of each commercial that aired (or I could send you guys over to Slate’s amazing coverage over here) or I could instead mention Oreo’s blazing fast response to the mid game electrical blackout (but then again, Buzzfeed got the scoop on the post with about the same speed that it was originally posted at here). Instead of re-praising the best of the best, like the Budweiser commercial that seriously made me tear up a little and then realize I was about to cry over a beer commercial, to the lowest of the low (can GoDaddy just go away now? please?), I’ve chosen one commerical that I thought was hilarious but has been received with mixed reviews and has been easily overshadowed by the Dodge Ram ad, which to me seemed more like an awesome powerpoint than a multi-million production: The Taco Bell “Viva Young” ad.
I’ve mentioned before how I’m a big fan of advertising that goes against the grain, like the Anti-Olympic tote bags I blogged about last year, so I’m fond of this commercial for many reasons. If you take a second to look over this year’s commercials, and most years before it, you’ll see a huge emphasis placed on youth and beauty (see this year’s Calvin Klein commercial, which must have been awkward for all the father-daughter combinations enjoying the game together) and if you do happen to see the older generation they are often imparting wisdom upon the rest of us (such as the Dodge Ram commercial). In the Taco Bell commercial, they aren’t waiting for their grandchildren to show up to share a Coke: they are sneaking out windows and partying it up like any rebellious teenager in every coming of age movie. It’s hilarious without mocking old age and, if anything, it pokes fun at what my fellow millennials and I consider to be a great night out. It’s all soundtracked to a Spanish version of Fun.’s 2012 anthem, “We are Young” which only adds to the level of unexpected, but welcomed, absurdity.
After years of Chihuahua’s selling us tacos, Taco Bell has started to explore what more they could offer instead of almost offensive south of the border jokes. They’ve feature popular music, customer tweets and pictures in their ads in 2012 and have kicked off 2013 with it’s hysterical salute to old age. Taco Bell doesn’t need you to be a farmer, or a horse trainer, or even a guy with washboard abs, they just want you to have fun.
So how does this all tie back to promotional products? The takeaways are this: enjoy yourself. Laughter is a powerful thing, it makes you stick in your consumers minds. How do I know this? Well I just spent an entire blog praising Taco Bell and to be completely honest: I don’t even like their food.
A few weeks ago, the President & CEO of the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) put out the following video blog about the association’s new initiative to develop and implement a system of generally accepted brand valuation standards – a system that, he says, our economy currently lacks.
In the video, Bob Liodice discusses the relationship between marketing and brand value. He is a firm believer that investing in the former is essential for the growth of the latter “If we don’t invest in marketing activities,” he says, “we could be damaging our brand value.”
The video comes in the midst of efforts from the Obama administration and the Interagency Working Group on Food Marketed to Children to cut back on the amount of junk food marketing and advertising initiatives specifically geared toward kids. Strict new guidelines have been proposed that could potentially cut current food & beverage advertising expenditures by 20%, reducing total sales by businesses in this industry by $30 billion in as little as a year. Of course, there would be job losses to go along with that dollar amount – 378,000 jobs over a four-year period, according to the ANA.
However, these brands won’t only be losing money and manpower. As Liodice notes in his video, marketing efforts directly relate to brand power, so if marketing initiatives are cut, brand value will also take a hit. He says that “we know empirically that strong brands means strong operating results, which means higher shareholder equity…organizations that have strong brands have a higher stock market value than those that do not.” Putting restrictions on how and to whom members of the food & beverage industry can advertise might not just affect these companies’ employees and profits, but our economy as a whole.
Welcome to this week’s edition of “Trending Topic Tuesday,” where we share our take on what’s going on in the world and what promotional products would appropriately (or inappropriately) market the subject matter.
While you may have seen – or perhaps even own – promotional media storage cases for the Amazon Kindle that have been imprinted with a brand’s custom design, logo, or message, a recent announcement from Amazon proves that protective cases are not the only way brands can make an impression on Kindle owners. Amazon will soon offer a less expensive of the Wi-Fi only Kindle 3 with built-in advertisements.
At $114, buyers will save $25 off the current Wi-Fi only model, but will be faced with sponsored screensavers from retailers including Olay, Buick, and Visa when the device is idle, and will encounter occasional special offers nestled among the pages of their e-books. Purchasers are encouraged to vote on which “attractive” advertisements they want to see included on the new version of the Kindle 3, giving them nearly the same amount of agency they have when choosing from the array of promotional media storage cases available in stores and online, as well as in the form of giveaways and corporate incentives.