The Week In Branded Content (March 9th)

The Week In Branded Content (March 9th)

We’ve been stuffing content with ads for way too long, and across the landscape, you can see the negative impact it’s had. For too long, everyone has been leaning into what has worked in the past, but that’s not what is going to work moving forward. The bottom falls out quickly if you don’t meet the changing needs of your audience.”

– – Chris Linn – President of TruTV






HTC Vive Funded Project Takes You Into The World of Honey Bees

In 2015, the United Nations established a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) including ambitious aims to end poverty, create affordable energy systems, and improve global quality of education. In response, Taiwanese VR company HTC Vive provided $10 million to kick start a VR for Impact initiative that funds VR projects and solutions to help the UN reach its goals by the 2030 deadline

BY Becca Loux



Tea Turns Up Temperature in Fight Against Coffee

Tea, the world’s most popular hot beverage, has long struggled with an image problem: People just aren’t willing to pay up for a cup. Now tea makers are launching new drinks and marketing campaigns to convince people to pay as much for a cup of herbal tea as they would for a caffe latte.


BY Saabira Chaudhuri




Why Lacoste Replaced Its Signature Alligator for Its New Polo Shirts

No, it’s not a joke, and no, it’s not as dumb as it sounds.

Variety reports that Fox Searchlight announced the production of Flamin’ Hot, the true and inspiring story of a billion-dollar snack.

Inspiring? Yes. If you’re not up on your finger-dust history, here’s the short of it: In 1976, Mexican-born janitor Robert Montanez was working at the Frito-Lay’s Rancho Cucamonga plant. A production line snafu left a batch of Cheetos naked, without its signature cheese dust. Montanez didn’t want the food to go to waste, so he decided to flavor it on his own with a mixture of salt, lime and chile powder used to flavor Mexican grilled corn. “I see the corn man adding butter, cheese, and chile to the corn,” he explained in an interview with Fox, “and thought, what if I add chile to a Cheeto?” “


BY Entrepreneur Staff



Walmart Celebrates Women Filmmakers at the Oscars

Last year, Walmart kicked off a three-year branded entertainment partnership with the Academy Awards by doing something never done before: bringing audiences three original films by four award-winning directors, each based on a true story—not from a book or a play, but from a Walmart receipt.


By Shirley Brady




A Shades of Gray Show That Was Genuinely Worth Watching

Forget lapel pins or white roses or black; the Oscars drew a line in that sand, anyway. Sunday night in Paris, Thom Browne made an utterly convincing statement about female strength and sexuality. He may have been an ocean away from Los Angeles, but it was as theatrical as any film, and as potent.

It began in a vast ballroom of the Hôtel de Ville, Paris’s city hall, with a central island filled with canvases propped up on easels. Out came a procession of painters — imaginary doppelgängers of Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun, Marie Antoinette’s favorite portrait painter and a woman who made her way in a man’s world — in beige jackets and gray bloomers, the legs exaggerated to hoop-skirt size, their hair jutting back in towering cones.





Spotify Launches New “Equalizer” Tool to Help Boost Female Representation

Nothing says gender equality quite like a swig of Smirnoff, so naturally the vodka company has teamed up with Spotify for a new project called the Smirnoff Equalizer.

The tool allows Spotify users to determine what percentage of male and female artists they listen to — and then suggests a more balanced selection of songs with an “equalized” playlist. If a playlist consisting of 50 percent female and non-binary artists isn’t enough for you, you can skew it upwards to 90 percent.


BY Sarah Murphy





Obituary writing is more about life than death: the last word, a testament to a human contribution.

Yet who gets remembered — and how — inherently involves judgment. To look back at the obituary archives can, therefore, be a stark lesson in how society valued various achievements and achievers.





Saudis’ New Clothes: Can PR Sell Mohammed Bin Salman to the West?

There was a time when Britain was deeply uncomfortable about its close links and extensive arms sales to Saudi Arabia. State visits happened, and protests came with them. But it was a topic officials discussed with painful awkwardness.

Saudi Arabia was treated like an embarrassing relative, who had to be humored and taken to parties so as not to risk the inheritance, but who we all prayed would sit in the corner and not talk to anyone.






The Ad Industry in 2018 — The Year of Magical Thinking

Sir Martin Sorrell, the industry’s most prominent agency spokesman, now has the difficult job of explaining, on behalf of WPP and of the industry in general, why revenue growth has been so difficult to achieve and what can be done about it. Since its peak in 2015, WPP shares have fallen 28% in value. In the main, Sorrell points his finger at “major customers, who are holding back ad spending to cut costs, and the long-term impact of technological disruption and the short-term focus of zero-based budgeters, activist investors and private equity.”









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