This New York Shop Takes a Jazz-like Approach to Marketing and Events

December 13, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Who President Esther Yoon, CEO Maurice Bernstein What Media, marketing and events shop Where New York and Los Angeles Every band, and every brand, has a backstory of when and how they got their big break. Giant Step, which co-founder Maurice Bernstein started as a hip-hop and jazz club in the 1990s, evolved from helping break big names like Amy Winehouse and The Roots to mixing music and tech for brands like Samsung , Intel and SoundCloud. (As far back as the '90s, Giant Step created a "Miles Ahead" series for Levi's, which debuted artists including Jurassic 5 and Fatboy Slim.) Bernstein, who served as interim gm for the Samsung 837 event space in New York, and president Esther Yoon often take a jazz-like approach to marketing by creating experiences that incorporate music, food and virtual reality. This year, Giant Step worked with SoundCloud to launch its subscription service by collaborating with various artists including Chance the Rapper and A$ap Ferg. "The essence of Giant Step is that we approach our projects like a jazz musician approaches music. We do it in a very nontraditional way in creating a unique experience for that brand," Bernstein said. "With jazz, you never play the piece the same way." This story first appeared in the December 12, 2016 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

Read More

Ad of the Day: Tinder Is Now on Apple TV, and Your Living Room Will Never Be the Same

December 13, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Running out of shows to binge-watch with your fam? Here's entertainment that literally never ends. Today in "How to make your holidays even weirder than they're going to be already," Tinder has released a series of digital videos (made in-house) promoting its Apple TV integration. Beginning now, you can download the dating app onto your platform and use Apple's remote to swipe left (for a pass) and right (for a possible hookup) ... right from the comfort of your couch. Broadcasting the app from your TV also means Tinder stops being such a solitary activity. Anybody can weigh in—or join in—on your swipes. Including Grandma. Below, a mother gives her son a hand, using a classic method for conveying information—the subtle cough-it-out

Read More

Skittles Will Return to the Super Bowl Next Year in a Campaign by adam&eveDDB

December 13, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Today Wrigley candy giant Skittles announced that it will be "Skittlizing the Big Game" for Super Bowl LI by way of a new campaign created by adam&eveDDB. This marks the third consecutive year in which Skittles has bought air time during the Super Bowl. The brand made its Big Game debut in 2015 with "Settle It," a spot about a town fixated on the lost art of arm wrestling. Last year, Aerosmith's Steven Tyler scored a starring role in "The Portrait," with the titular image made entirely of Skittles. DDB Chicago was the creative agency behind both efforts, with the client producing an array of teasers starring such unlikely brand advocates as notoriously press shy Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch , former quarterback Kurt Warner and Broncos linebacker-turned amateur weatherman DeMarcus Ware . A Wrigley representative has declined to provide any teasers or hints regarding the creative direction of the campaign or the parent company's decision to go with the London-based adam&eveDDB. That network's best-known work may be a series of Christmas spots for hometown retailer John Lewis

Read More

The 10 Best TV Shows of 2016

December 13, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

In the world of peak TV— as many as 450 scripted series aired this year , in addition to around 750 unscripted shows—it’s more daunting than ever to winnow all those programs down to just 10 shows to represent the year's very finest. Yet for some reason, it was easier than usual to come up with my top 10 picks for 2016. With more sensational TV options than ever before, it has truly become survival of the fittest: a handful of shows separate themselves from a distinguished pack by resonating with you for months, long after you’ve moved on to dozens, or hundreds, of other programs. That's what this list represents: the shows that burrowed themselves into my brain this year and changed me—and television—forever. It includes not one but two different 10-hour programs focusing on O.J. Simpson, a surprise series that no one saw coming, and a pair of shows in the middle of their runs that have each hit new creative heights. If you’re looking to binge a few shows over the holiday break, this list is the perfect place to start.

Read More

Ad of the Day: Beats by Dre’s All-Star Athletes Rock Out to White Stripes’ ‘Seven Nation Army’

December 9, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Beats by Dre has a proud history of tapping into sports superstars, going back to "The Game Before the Game" with Brazilian soccer star Neymar and the "Hear What You Want" work with Kevin Garnett, Richard Sherman, Colin Kaepernick and Cesc Fabregas. Now, the brand is back with a rocking new spot—with no fewer than 23 of the world's top athletes. The spot, by Anomaly, features Tom Brady, LeBron James, Michael Phelps, Serena Williams, Cam Newton, Kevin Durant, Simone Biles and Nigel Sylvester, among other stars. They're all seen beating their chests to the pulsing baseline of "Seven Nation Army" by the White Stripes, which has become a great sports anthem in its own right over the years. The theme of the new spot is, "Be heard." So many athletes use music as inspiration and a way to get pumped up. And headphones have the added benefit of providing privacy, which athletes also crave—making Beats' connection to sports that much more resonant. "It's full of emotion," Tom Brady said of the White Stripes song in a statement. "That beat. That rhythm. It gets everyone off their feet. It's a great feeling when that song comes on." The spot is the second big anthem piece of the fall for Beats. It follows the "Got No Strings" spot, which broke in October, also from Anomaly. That was another star-studded piece, but with fewer athletes, and used a song from Disney's Pinocchio to sell wireless headphones. CREDITS Client: Beats by Drew Agency: Anomaly Starring: Cam Newton, LeBron James, Serena Williams, Owen Farrell, Tom Brady, Kevin Debruyne, Kevin Durant, Anthony Joshua, Simone Biles, Nigel Sylvester, Conor McGregor, Antoine Griezmann, Thierry Henry, Leticia Bufoni, Antonio Conte, César Azpilicueta , Eden Hazard, Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas, Bastian Schweinsteiger , Alexander Ovechkin, Michael Phelps , Arjen Robben

Read More

This Week’s Must-Haves: Barbie’s New Dreamhouse Is a High-Tech Smart Home

December 6, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

This week, the Adweek team is highlighting Barbie's ultra-smart new Dreamhouse, a sparkling candy-inspired clutch, Glossier's party-ready gift set and more. Take a look!

Read More

How Tito’s Vodka Poured On the Charm and Grew Bigger Than Texas

December 6, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Bertito Beveridge—"Tito" to everyone—likes to tell the story of how he first tried to get into the liquor business in 1993. The Texas-born geophysicist-turned-mortgage broker, who'd begun adding flavors to store-bought vodka as a hobby, tried to sell some of his concoctions at a local liquor store. The owner kicked him out. When Beveridge asked how he was supposed to distribute his flavored vodkas, the shopkeeper told him there was no future in that stuff. Nick Ferrari "He goes, 'If you can make a really smooth vodka that a girl can drink straight, then you might have something,'" Beveridge recalled in a recent radio interview. "Well, how do you do that?" Beveridge asked the man. He replied: "I don't know—you figure it out." Beveridge did figure it out. Using credit cards to buy 13 "middle of nowhere" acres in Travis County, Beveridge designed a still based on old photos of moonshiners he found at the library and "just kind of started cooking," as he put it. He distilled corn (most vodkas use wheat) and used local aquifer water. The end result: Tito's Handmade Vodka. Take note of that adjective; we'll come back to it. Courtesy Tito's Vodka Today, with minimal marketing but many fans, Tito's has nudged aside giants like Ketel One and Grey Goose. "It's a brand you're beginning to see in bars all over the country—and I'm not talking neighborhood or sports bars, but upscale, expense-account places," said veteran spirits consultant Arthur Shapiro, author of the just-released book Inside the Bottle. "It's become a call brand: Someone will say, 'I'll have a Tito's martini.' Tito's has become a phenomenon, and that doesn't happen very often." Courtesy Tito's Vodka It certainly doesn't in the vodka category, one controlled by global conglomerates like Diageo and Pernod Ricard. So why is Tito's suddenly the toast of the town? The simple answer is that it's a premium vodka at a bargain-shelf price. But part of Tito's appeal is its back story. Tito's the brand has made shrewd and effective use of Tito the founder—how he went into debt with 19 credit cards, how he slept in his still shack with a pack of stray dogs, and how he made his vodka by hand. "Among the things that drives a brand is the back story, and Tito's has capitalized on that," Shapiro said. "Good guy makes it big after suffering

Read More

This Online Advent Calendar Counts Down All of 2016’s Terrible Events

December 6, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Let's be honest, 2016 has been a pretty horrendous year. The world lost beloved singers David Bowie and Prince, Harambe, the Cincinnati Zoo gorilla was shot and killed after a child fell into the animal's enclosure, while shootings, wars and natural disasters raged on. Two British creatives working in Berlin, Robert Hall (a creative at M&C Saatchi) and Tim Cook (from M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment), came up with an idea that would not only highlight some of the worst moments of 2016 but also give back to those who are truly in need of some support. Enter the Badvent Calendar. It's like an advent calendar, but instead of dispensing delicious chocolates, it tosses out Tumblr posts highlighting the terrible events of 2016. While it may send you back into a deep, dark hole of 2016-induced depression, it's all for a good cause. At the end of each post, there's an inspiring call to action: The Badvent Calendar asks you to donate to EducAid Sierra Leone, an organization that provides free secondary education to people in Sierra Leone. "Like typical Brits we were having a really good moan while having a cup of tea the morning just after Donald Trump won the election. We were both pretty shocked about the result, just like we were after Brexit. Coincidentally, the result came just a day after Leonard Cohen's death—and we both were like: 'Hang on a minute, is 2016 the sh*ttest year ever?'" Hall and Cook said in an email. Remember Harambe?

Read More

Ad of the Day: Kids Act Out Romeo & Juliet in Apple’s Charming New iPhone 7 Spot

December 6, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Wherefore art thou, iPhone 7? Here's a charmer for the digital scrapbook. In its ongoing efforts to convince us the incremental changes of the iPhone 7 are actually quite magical, Apple has released "Romeo and Juliet." The ad features your favorite star-crossed lovers, played by kids who probably have no business fooling around with poison and daggers, let alone eloping. But the reason for this curious casting will be made clear in less than 30 seconds. That's right, you're not in Verona.

Read More

Clorox and HuffPost’s RYOT Made a 360-Degree Video About Clean Drinking Water

December 5, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Clorox is most often associated with cleaning kitchens and stains, but it's probably not a brand that comes to mind when you think about clean drinking water. To help raise awareness of the poor quality of water in rural Peru, the company known for its household products has sponsored its first 360-degree video, and it shows what a difference a few drops of bleach can make. The film, Purely Peru, was produced by HuffPost's RYOT and AOL to explain waterborne illnesses and how Clorox's Safe Water Project provides materials to kill bacteria and viruses. According to HuffPost RYOT CMO Molly Swenson, branded content is becoming less commercialized and is increasingly focused on character-driven narratives and experiences. "If it's good enough, nobody is going to care if a brand is attached to it if it's an authentic story," Swenson said.

Read More