It seems like the use of Graphics Interchange Format or GIF technology has become all the rage lately in making animated looping six-second videos on Vine. What we didn’t know was that this GIF technology was 25 years old and how to pronounce GIF in the first place. Lingering questions about the correct pronunciation were answered earlier this week when the GIF creator won a Webby Award and said just the time-allotted five word acceptance speech of “It’s pronounced JIF, not GIF.”
A good brand creative and strategist knows when to strike when the iron is hot and peanut butter brand Jif knew exactly how to seize on this opportunity. A simple tweet of “It’s pronounced Jif” caused so many Twitter users to engage the brand and Jif interacted with most every tweeter. @BrettMyDude69 wrote that “@Jif has the best peanut butter. FACT.” to which the brand thanked him for being such a great f
“It’s pronounced jif.” – inventor of GIF “No, it’s not.” – inventor of the letter G,” wrote Brandon Hay. ”It looks like the creator is choosy,” replied Jif, cheekily.
Well done, Jif!
We wrote a blog piece last August entitled “The Rebranding of Hooters Breastaurant” and how the chain known for its owl logo (among other things) was looking to attract a younger and broader customer base including women as patrons rather than servers. We’ve now learned that a Texas based restaurant chain called Bikinis Bar and Grill has actually trademarked the term “breastaurant” with the United States Patent and Trademark Office as their own, according to an article on ABCNews.com. What this technically means is that the company is the only one that can call itself legally by that term.
Bikinis has locations in Oklahoma, North Carolina and Texas. In addition, the company purchased an abandoned town in Bankersmith, Texas off a Craigslist ad and has plans to turn the area into a seasonal tourist destination. The town has been renamed Bikinis, Texas in honor of the chain.
Breastaurants are big (no pun intended) business in America reportedly bringing in $1 billion annually in revenues. Other restaurants formerly part of the “breastaurant” genre include CANZaciti Roadhouse with four New York locations, Hooters with 460 U.S. restaurants, Tilted Kilt with restaurants in 25 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces and the aptly titled Twin Peaks with the motto “Eats. Drinks. Scenic Views.” with 32 established locations and 10 scheduled to open soon.
In a prime example of how a brand should engage its followers on social media in real time, Kit-Kat quickly and intelligently challenged Oreo to a tic-tac-toe game when a self-proclaimed chocolate lover named LauraEllen tweeted that she likes chocolate so much that she was following both @Oreo and @Kit-Kat on Twitter.
Kit-Kat made the first move on the tic-tac-toe board by taking center spot and making an X out of two of its iconic chocolate covered wafers. Oreo adeptly responded by eating most of the X and kindly tweeting the following: Sorry, @kitkat we couldn’t resist.
Kudos to Kit-Kat for being on the ball and responding quickly to @Laura_ellenxx’s posting and to Oreo for replying to Kit-Kat in real time. Double Stuff honors to Oreo for simply being the classiest sandwich cookie in praising its competitor in the chocolate arena.
Whether you call it ambush marketing, a smart advertising technique or a parasitic ploy, several big brands that are not official sponsors of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship are nonetheless profiting from it through referencing the series yet avoiding the use of trademarked terms, according to an article in USA Today. It is estimated that a 30 second spot during the finals costs a hefty $1.4 million and that a top tier major sponsorship for the entire series runs approximately $35 million for the series.
To sidestep these significant costs, Hormel has launched a YouTube video for a character “Sir Can A Lot” who runs around in the spot talking about the “madness of March” with a basketball strategically placed on a counter to Sir Can A Lot’s left. Pizza Hut is offering preregistered fans the chance to win a medium sized pizza with topping valued at $8 to those who predict which four teams will make it to the semi-finals. (Note they do not mention the term “final four.” ) Hooters is also using this marketing technique to offer downloadable coupons during the duration of the games called Hooters Hooky.
“We decided to be the official sponsor for the passion of watching college basketball,” said Hooters marketing chief Dave Henninger to USA Today.
If trademarks aren’t unlawfully infringed, it sounds like pretty intelligent marketing to us. What are your (original) thoughts?
The CLIO Awards will honor the Coca-Cola Company as the inaugural Brand Icon Award winner at the upcoming awards ceremony on May 15 in New York City, according to an article on Adweek. The newly created Brand Icon Award recognizes one brand yearly that is seen as a permanent fixture in popular culture.
Coca-Cola has certainly swept competitor Pepsi under the rug when it comes to social media dominance. Coca-Cola has approximately 61.5 million Facebook fans while Pepsi claims only 9.5 million fans on the same social media network. As a basis for comparison, Dr. Pepper has almost 15 million Facebook fans while Red Bull has almost 37 million fans. Coca-Cola is the fourth ranked brand on Facebook followed only by Facebook, Facebook for Every Phone and YouTube.
“From its unmistakeable script logo to iconic polar bears to Mean Joe Greene, Coca-Cola marketers have successfully stitched the brand into the fabric of America as well as countries around the world,” according to the Adweek piece. And who could ever forget how Coke “taught the world to sing in perfect harmony?” We certainly can’t.
Congratulations Coke! We are sure that corporate brass is drinking to another 127 years of beverage dominance.
In one of the most interesting brands and social media concepts to come out of the South by Southwest (SXSW )conference in Austin, Taco Bell sponsored a conference by the band Passion Pit last night and streamed the event live to an audience nationwide, according to an article on FoodBeast.com.
The frenzied fan fun, however, did not stop there. Passion Pit aficionados utilized ”a camera switching app on Feedthebeat.com that gave fans several roaming and stationary cameras to sift through, along with displaying a slew of Tweets, Twitpics, Instagrams and Vine videos from fans at the show hash-tagging #feedthebeat,” according to the piece. The fan chosen images will then be coupled with live video footage of the concert and woven into what director Sam Jones calls an “experiential fan-made rockumentary.” The rockumentary is slated for release in Summer 2013.
Taco Bell’s Feed the Beat program gives artists on the rise $500 in Taco Bell gift cards and opportunities to appear in advertising campaigns and brand sponsored events.
Yo quiero Taco Bell!
Much to the delight of throngs of female fans, Justin Timberlake performed two songs, “Suit & Tie” with rap impresario Jay-Z and a new release “Little Pusher Love Girl” at the 2013 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Feb. 10 after a four year hiatus on that stage. And in a further attempt to promote “brand” Timberlake, the former ‘N Syncer joined Instagram that same evening and attracted 100,000 followers in just a 24 hour timeframe, according to an article on Mashable. As of this writing, Timberlake has over 185,000 followers on the picture sharing site and his “team” has posted 22 photos using the Willow Instagram filter.
Brand Kelly Clarkson is searing hot right now between her rendition of “My Country, Tis of Thee” at President Barack Obama’s second inauguration last month and her 2013 Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Album. She also joined Instagram last week and has over 45,000 followers as of this writing. Madonna relaunched her account and of her 10 posted photos, her most recent is a close up of her cleavage. She can boast of an impressive 118,000 person following.