Must of us have had a memorable night on the town thanks to (or to blame on) alcohol, but probably never before in a town being run by a beer company.
Budweiser intends to change that as part of its “Whatever, USA” campaign, which plans to put Bud Light at the core of an unspecified town and drop in fans who are #UpForWhatever.
If that sounds like a recipe for disaster, well, that could be just what the King of Beers is looking for.
The brand is currently accepting audition videos from potential participants and “casting” around the country, in a process which strongly resembles the early stages of reality and talent TV shows like “Survivor” and “X-Factor.” These auditions will allow the campaign’s strategists to weed out – or perhaps push forward – any candidates who look like they might be trouble.
It’s a bold undertaking for a brand and furthers the drive towards businesses becoming media houses. Part of the allure is the secrecy and potential for ‘anything goes’ content, although just how crazy Bud will let things get remains to be seen. Walking that line between sponsoring fun and causing chaos is always a challenge for alcohol producers, but the campaign seems to be off to a good start as events pop up around the country.
Another side element of the campaign is our old friend native advertising and just how much disclosure must be given when brands blend content with their marketing message. This Buzzfeed post, for example, in which Bud Light is identified as the “Brand Publisher,” but only in a byline that’s dwarfed by the article content. The association is there, but not necessarily everyone will make it.
Remember that regulators look for full disclosure of conflicts of interest when a product or service is seen to be promoted on a site that isn’t your own.
Guidance is still being formed on native advertising, so if you have questions about keeping your own marketing campaigns within the law, get in touch with our experts.
Soccer’s World Cup kicked off last week in Brazil, with all the razzmatazz expected of one of the world’s most popular and flamboyant sports.
Even against a backdrop of domestic discontent and sporting scandal, the world is ready to And as with the Olympics and Superbowl, this is a sporting event that demands big brands be on top form.
Coca Cola gears up for World Cup 2014 | Image Credit: Mike Mozart
Most of the usual players are out there looking for their share of the tens of millions of viewers already pouring in from each qualifying country. While the brand results are all over the map, both geographically and in terms of success, the big brands are out in force with different takes on how to win over audiences (especially here in the U.S., where soccer is rarely viewed as a major sporting event.)
To search for that elusive crossover appeal, the (newly acquired by Apple) Beats Electronics brand enlisted the help of better known American athletes like LeBron James and Serena Williams, to appear alongside soccer icons Ronaldo and Neymar, in its blanket coverage ad.
Meanwhile Nike relied purely on soccer stars alone in its ‘Winner Stays‘ spot, where as McDonalds took things all the way back to grass roots level with this excellent ‘trick shot’ spot.
Without deep pockets, though, it’s tough for a business to legally associate itself with World Cup 2014. The governing body of the sport has published its guidelines on the marks it has registered for the tournament, limiting the areas in which brands other than official sponsors can connect with the hundred of millions of people that the event attracts.
As always with major sporting and world occasions, it’s important to known where you might be stepping over the line if you want to align yourself with the big event. If you have questions, our team has the knowledge and know-how to keep your business from being kicked around!