Entertainment Marketing

Entertainment Marketing and Brand Storytelling: Part of the Pepsi Generation

I was feeling nostalgic and started looking at some old ads on YouTube. One of the ads that caught my attention was an old Pepsi commercial from the 1980's featuring Michael Jackson. Being a music fan and storyteller at heart, I started to wonder what it was about the commercial that caught my attention. Once "in", I was drawn into the story just as I would be while watching a cherished classic movie.

The worlds of entertainment marketing and brand storytelling are a natural fit for each other. While the concept of entertainment marketing is nothing new and has been used in TV and radio shows as early as the 1950's, its use is very effective in sending out a brand message that is able to connect with consumers.

Pepsi is (and has been) a major player in this space and is able to capitalize on its benefits. Here's why this ad still represents the best attributes behind entertainment marketing and brand storytelling:

1) The use of story lets me connect with the product - I feel the same emotions the kid is feeling. It's as if I'm transported back to my childhood.

2) The presence of Michael Jackson and his music draws me into the story. Immediately, my memory goes back to that time and I draw a connection between the product and how I felt at that time in my life. Nostalgia moves people.

3) Again, EMOTION EMOTION EMOTION...great brands are able to affect our emotions and I'm more likely to buy a product if I connect with it and feel something for it.

4) Product placement is all over the place - the Pepsi brand becomes engrained in your memory.

5) The story of the kid - his look, emotions and reactions - tell the story. He's in the presence of a great celebrity and noone can take that moment away from him. It's truly a Pepsi moment and, if you "get it", you're part of the Pepsi generation and therefore quite cool.

The world's greatest brands use elements of entertainment marketing and brand storytelling in their ads. Can you think of recent examples for ad campaigns that were able to draw you in to the brand message?

CBS Lab Distributes Online Video Clips to Promote Shows

Cbslogo_2In a YouTube-like effort to promote shows through the creation and distribution of user-generated content, CBS announced the launch of a digital production studio that will present bite-size video clips as an entertainment and marketing tool. The network is capitalizing on the short attention span of most online viewers by reducing full-length feature episodes to clips more reminiscent of those seen on YouTube.

The idea is to make the clips look more like content than like a traditional promotional tool. According to CBS, inspiration for EyeLab came from a video posted on YouTube last year called "Endless Caruso One Liners." The clip showed a montage of scenes from CSI Miami showing star David Caruso muttering key phrases at the scene of the crime. According to YouTube, the clip had been viewed more than a million times.

CBS hired twenty-something digital video editors to create similar content for the lab, and will also distribute content created by users themselves.

It seems that CBS made a smart move by tailoring its tactics to the demographics of the online audience. While the success of YouTube prompted many networks to feature full-length video clips, the trend is now back to shorter clips that are able to link back to the shows.

What's interesting is whether or not the network's strategy of selling ads embedded in the clips will be successful. Online users traditionally shun corporate advertising in content, as it seems to go against online culture and behaviour.

What do you think? Will advertising work in CBS' revised strategy to create and distribute bite-size video clips?