Archive for June, 2011
Late last week, just in time for New York City’s gay pride event, gay marriage was legalized in New York State. The decision has been hailed by many as a step in the right direction for the state and for the United States as a whole. However, are the motives behind this recent development more centered around money?
According to an article by Reuven Blau and Erin Einhorn on the New York Daily News’ Web site, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is hoping to cash in on the legal gay marriage law. “The city’s tourism agency – NYC & Company – says the gay wedding industry could be worth millions of dollars to the city, triggering job growth,” reported Blau and Einhorn. But first, gay marriage needs to be promoted.
In order to do so, Mayor Bloomberg “plans to unveil a campaign to sell the most populous U.S. city as a gay-wedding destination,” report Esmé E. Deprez and Henry Goldman in an article for Bloomberg.com. The campaign has been dubbed the “NYC I Do” campaign, and will reportedly add millions of dollars to the city’s huge tourism industry.
As reported by Blau and Einhorn, “NYC & Company is working to create a multi-channel, global communications and marketing campaign - NYC I DO – to promote the vibrancy and attractiveness of the five boroughs as a gay weddings destination,” said Kimberly Spell, the agency’s chief communications officer. According to Blau and Einhorn, interested parties can already view information regarding rules and regulations for marrying in New York on NYC & Company’s Web site.
Today, the Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI) added a new video to its YouTube channel outlining its fun, new promos. The clip covers a variety of new items, from pinatas to silicone watches. Let’s go over in more detail some of the products featured on ASI’s The Joe Show.
We love The Joe Show because it highlights products that are appropriate for the current season and in compliance with current trends. One such product displayed in this particular episode of The Joe Show is a thermo-fork. The fork is ideal for grilling steaks to perfection. With so many upcoming federal holidays (Independence Day, Labor Day, etc.), barbeque tools are highly relevant. Great job, Joe!
Another product featured on the latest episode of ASI’s The Joe Show is a set of car cup coasters. These are great for summer because people tend to pick up iced beverages on their way to work, the beach, etc. Car coasters help prevent your car’s cupholder from getting soggy and wet due to condensation from your cool beverage.
You can also view all of these fantastic summer promo products and more by watching the most recent episode of The Joe Show. Remember, the key to success with promotional items is to hand out useful and relevant products. Joe’s got the right idea!
Anyone who’s a big fan of the Harry Potter books and films is dreading the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2. They’re dreading it because after its release this coming July, there won’t be any more Potter-themed debuts to which we can all look forward. Or so we thought.
J.K. Rowling, the mastermind behind the Harry Potter phenomenon, announced the plans for her new Web site today, named “Pottermore,” at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. As reported in an article by Margot Adler on NPR.com, Rowling’s new Web site ”will launch in October, [and] will be the only place where digital versions of the series will be available.”
Some question why Rowling has chosen to wait until now to release her novels as E-books. Others claim that it is quite simply a genius marketing move. This opinion is perhaps best expressed through a blog post by Sam Jordison for The Guardian. “Once again, JK Rowling and her marketing team have left the rest of the publishing world standing while she blazes a trail into the record books. I’ll eat my hardback copy of The Deathly Hallows if the Harry Potters aren’t the fastest-selling ebooks in history by the end of this year – and I can only tip my hat in admiration,” wrote Jordison.
Whatever the case, we’re all looking forward to Pottermore, because, as stated by Adler in her article, Rowling promises it will include ”new material about the characters, places and objects in the Harry Potter stories.” Now fans can happily watch the final movie without feeling like it’s the real end.
While Disney’s Cars movies may appeal most to young children, promotion for the new film Cars 2 is being driven mostly by mature-minded companies. Let’s take a look at how Goodyear and State Farm have helped to promote the film, which was released June 18.
To help launch Cars 2, Disney and Pixar teamed up with Goodyear and State Farm. According to WJBC’s Web site, “State Farm is joining forces with some familiar talking cars for their ‘Agents on a Mission’ promotion. British super spy car Finn McMissle and the tow truck Mater from Disney Pixar’s Cars 2 take center stage in a new ad called ‘Pitties,’ which is part of the new campaign.”
Through the new ad campaign, fans have the chance to win an opportunity to interact with life-sized models of the movie’s characters, as well as to take home one of 18,000 prizes, according to Paul Morello for WJBC. Morello also reports that, according to State Farm’s National Sponsorships Manager Todd Fischer, Cars 2′s theme is similar to the values that help drive State Farm every day.
“Our agents are on a mission as well, and while they’re not secret agents they are very special agents. The promotion really gave us an opportunity to get back to the core of the value of State Farm agents and the role they play in helping families navigate through the twists and turns of life.”
Similarly, Disney and Pixar incorporated Goodyear into its ad campaign for Cars 2. As reported by Karl Greenberg in an article for MediaPost.com, “Goodyear is launching a campaign this week integrated with the Disney/Pixar release — an effort that includes advertising, events, a full makeover of Goodyear’s consumer Web site at GoodyearTires.com, and even a rebranding of the Goodyear blimp.”
These companies obviously do not necessarily appeal to children. However, promoting the movie through Goodyear and State Farm makes sense. Who’s buying movie tickets for toddlers and young children? Their parents.
A recent article by Brian Monahan featured on AdAge.com brought light to a new threat to TV advertising. In the article, Monahan touches on a big misconception– the idea that DVR users skip through ads. In reality, a study found that only “2% of total TV ad impressions are avoided through fast forwarding,” according to Monahan. However, Monahan reported that 63% of television ads were avoided by simply not paying attention (most likely due to time spent on smart phones).
As if that wasn’t enough of a threat to the television promotions industry, another recent study proves what moms all over the world have been saying for decades: TV is bad for you. According to an article featured on Time magazine’s Web site, “Dr. Frank Hu of the Harvard School of Public Health and his colleagues report in the Journal of the American Medical Association that too much TV time was associated with increases in the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart problems and the risk of death from any cause.”
The fact that idly watching television isn’t good for one’s health shouldn’t come as a surprise. However, that it can actually decrease health is news to most. In the Time magazine article, Alice Park reported, “For every two hours of TV watching, the researchers found, the risk of type 2 diabetes increased by 20% over 8.5 years of follow-up, the risk of heart disease rose by 15% over a decade, and the odds of dying from any cause increased 13% during a seven year follow-up.” These statistics are truly shocking.
Who knows how Americans will react to Hu’s study? If people do go out and start doing “more of something else,” as Hu suggests, will TV ads become a thing of the past? The study’s results, in combination with the high rate of avoided TV ads due to other distractions, may mean that we are nearing the end of televised promotions.
Dubbed “Hallmark-created” by many, Father’s Day is a holiday on which people all over the world honor the father figures in their lives by showering them with gifts and praise. According to cynics, the holiday is all about big corporations making more money. This year seems to be no exception. With Father’s Day less than a week away, companies of all sorts are making the final push on their Dad-oriented marketing efforts.
Let’s take a look at some of the promotional deals you’ll find while last-minute shopping for Father’s Day gifts:
This year, T-Mobile is offering a unique promotional campaign to anyone who signs up for “a qualifying voice, text and data plan,” according to an article on Time magazine’s Web site. According to Jared Newman, the article’s author, the wireless carrier will offer an entire year of free data to anyone who qualifies. “The offer provides 200 MB of data per month,” said Newman. Seems like a great deal, right? Newman warns that consumers must be sure to read the fine print: “T-Mobile’s free data offer isn’t really free. To get the smartphone data deal, customers must sign up for unlimited talk and text messages, which is $10 per month more expensive than a plan with 500 voice minutes … And with that, Dad can learn his first lesson about the smartphone business: Somewhere, there’s always a gotcha.” If you’re interested in this deal, make sure it makes sense; consider your Dad’s usage and whether or not the promo will be worth it for him.
Dodger Stadium Sensation
If you’re in Los Angeles, you may want to take advantage of this Dodger delight. According to Danielle Crofford Fetter’s article for Yahoo! Sports, “On Father’s Day, the Dodgers will be going all out to honor … all of the dads in attendance at the game with lots of Father’s Day promotions and special events.” Among the festivities will be live music by Gaby Moreno, family-friendly fun, food, and plenty of giveaways. Perhaps the highlight of this Dodger extravaganza will be the 8th Annual Father’s Day Catch. For an hour following the game, children can play a game of catch with their fathers at Dodger Stadium. This promotion will of course bring in tons of money for Dodger Stadium, but if your dad (or grandpa, or any family member, really) loves baseball, then it might be worth the trip!
“The Gift of Fashion”
Lucky Brand sent out a press release today outlining its own fashion-oriented “Make Dad’s Day” promotion. According to the release, “At 50 retail locations across the nation, Lucky is hosting a contest where winners will receive a $225 shopping spree, which can be used towards jeans, shirts, or any item that will enhance Dad’s wardrobe. Each store’s winner will also get a $50 gift certificate good towards a Father’s Day meal at a local restaurant.” Entries can be placed through this Saturday, June 18, and the winners will be announced on Sunday, June 19. For any fashion-forward father, this promotion will hit the spot.
There are sure to be a ton of other Father’s Day promotions, as well, so keep your eyes peeled! But remember to read the fine print; don’t get caught in an “it’s too good to be true” situation that goes bad. Good luck and happy shopping!
To say we didn’t see this coming would be a lie. As people are beginning to spend more and more time browsing the Web, advertisers are beginning to spend more and more money on online promotions. According to an article yesterday in the Wall Street Journal, ”Online ad spending is expected to increase 20% to $31.3 billion in 2011, eMarketer predicts. The research firm previously pegged growth for Internet ad spending this year at 10.5%, to $28.5 billion.”
The fact that online ad spending has surpassed the estimation is a big statement. This means that researchers have realized that consumers are spending more time online. However, according to a Los Angeles Times article, online viewing is still dwarfed by how much time people spend watching TV. The article reads, “The average American watched 34 hours and 39 minutes of TV a week, according to Nielsen Research — with the most ardent viewers over the age of 65. By contrast, 143.9 million Americans went online to check out video in January and invested about 4 hours and 39 minutes a month watching on their PCs and laptops.”
Even though Americans spend more time in front of the TV than they do online, Internet ads still rank as the fastest-growing segment. Will online advertising eventually catch up to, and surpass, traditional forms of advertising? Only time will tell.
If you’re anything like most movie-goers, before a big movie debut you stop at a local convenience store for a few snacks. That’s probably what the popular convenience store, 7-Eleven, is banking on with its latest campaign. In order to promote “Super 8,” a movie that will be released on Friday, June 10, the super popular convenience store is giving away a once in a lifetime opportunity: The chance to travel to space.
The new movie, which begs the question, “Are we alone?” follows teenage filmmakers who try to make sense of a devastating crash that is more than meets the eye. This sci-fi thriller’s promotional campaign at 7-Eleven makes sense. According to Convenience Store News’ Web site, “To promote the film, 7-Eleven is offering a special Super Big Gulp cup that features the ‘Super 8′ poster art and movie scenes; ’8′-themed specials on items that end in the number 8 such as 88-cent brownies or two 12-ounce cans of Red Bull for $4.98; and a special display of retro candy brands priced at 98 cents, or two for 98 cents.”
But the most noteworthy of 7-Eleven’s promotions is the chance to win a trip into outer space. The convenience store is topping off its huge promotional campaign with “a suborbital space flight, our grandest prize ever,” said 7-Eleven’s Chief Marketing Officer Rita Bargerhuff. This flight will allow the winner to experience weightlessness and also to view the curvature of our planet.
According to Jesus Delgado-Jenkins, senior vice president of merchandising, marketing and logistics for 7-Eleven, “Some adventurous customers will get the chance of a lifetime with a zero-gravity flight experience, and one lucky winner will receive what could just be a life-altering suborbital trip to space.”
We’ve all seen the ads before– “Click here for your FREE iPad!” However, those days might be over. Apple has put out a strict set of guidelines pertaining to the use of Apple products as prizes in competitions and contests.
According to a feature on PCworld.com, “…the iPad, iPhone and the iPhone Gift Card may not be used in third-party promotions and that the iPod touch is only allowed to be used in special circumstances.” The article goes on to say that Apple is prohibiting the use of the word “free” before any Apple device during a promotional campaign. Looks like those annoying “FREE iPad” ads are history!
Apple is cracking down on the usage of its products for promotional campaigns. But how seriously will they take it? And furthermore, what impact do these “free” Apple product campaigns have on the business? We’re excited to watch this one unravel!