Category Archives: Branded Entertainment

Brand Fast-Trackers #183 – Content is King & Queen

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Today’s episode is with Rob Barnett, CEO/Founder of My Damn Channel. Rob had a long career in TV and radio when he founded My Damn Channel in 2007. Think back, in 2007, YouTube had been purchased by Google already, but it was nowhere near the behemoth it has become. Rob and his team took the bet that as online video continued to unfold, YouTube would mostly serve as a popular video aggregator, but that both consumers and most importantly, advertisers would need a place to go for premium, original content. My Damn Channel is just that place. As Rob puts it:

“For us, the approach has always been the quality, the selection . . . so on the internet it is important to steal some of the playbook of traditional media. They have always put the best in front of the most.”

This plays into the ‘content is king’ sentiment, but according to Rob it’s more than that. “Content is King and Queen,” he says. My Damn Channel takes the most popular talent online and creates (ideally) enough traction to inspire advertisers to join in, support it, and then help them create branded entertainment of their own. To me it seems Rob has found the perfect formula for bridging the gap between the safe traditional TV you-know-what-you-are-going-to-get model and the online quality-can-be-questionable video model.

My Damn Channel works with brands like Adobe, Southern Comfort, Subway, Fiat and most recently did a successful campaign with 711 to help their star Grace Helbig of Daily Grace decide whether or not she should move from NY to LA. The 7Election campaign (obviously timed along with the recent presidential election) generated 42,000 votes in the first day alone.

As a consumer, if you have not heard of My Damn Channel, go check them out to see Grace and celebs like Adam Carolla, Jimmy Kimmel and Coolio (yes, you read that right – Coolio!).

As a brand/advertiser who has perhaps avoided supporting online video, they are absolutely worth checking out.

Tune into the full audio below, or find us on iTunes or Stitcher.

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Brand Fast-Trackers #179 – The (Underutilized) Power of Sound

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The Power of Sound

Do you remember what song was playing when you shared your first kiss? Or the first time you met your partner? Sound is an incredibly powerful sense. When is the last time a song came on the radio or Spotify, and immediately you were taken back to a junior high or high school dance?

Knowing this, I reached out to SoundCloud, an incredibly fast-growing niche sound-based network with over 20MM users. If the name isn’t immediately familiar all you need to do is scroll to the end of this post to see the ‘soundcloud’ of today’s episode! Soundcloud allows users to upload any type of sound (music, podcasts, speeches, poetry, ambient sound) from any device to the soundcloud network. The cool part is that these soundclouds freely integrate with any social network, so users can post them to Facebook, Twitter, dare I say MySpace(?) and of course into blogs like this one.

As I touched on in the intro, sound is incredibly powerful. In Brian’s conversation with Mark Dewings, head of Brand & Marketing Communications, they discuss how can brands use sound to connect with consumers and make their products resonate on a really intimate level.

Another thing that really fascinates me is how brands attract their talent. SoundCloud has launched a really cool advertising campaign that solely focuses on their company culture, in a bid to recruit talent, but it also tells their brand story to users of the platform and beyond. As Mark shares the ultimate reason someone joins a company is the culture, so being able to tell that story is key.

[Lead image via Wikipedia]

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Brand Fast-Trackers #166 – “Marketers Need to Take Advantage of Snacking Moments”

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The best brand marketing are familiar with and adept at leveraging emerging technologies. Today we speak with someone who is very close to one of these fascinating tools. Evan Krauss is the EVP of Advertising Sales for Shazam. To date, Shazam has had over 5 billion interactions with consumers, yes 5 BILLION. Shazam is shifting from being a helpful music recognition app to an incredible tool for marketers to engage with their consumer on the 2nd screen.

Evan offers insights on mobile trends as a whole, the Shazam platform specifically, and how marketers can better take advantage of consumers’ “snacking moments” with their devices to drive incredible engagement and brand loyalty. Evan has been in the internet, digital and mobile field for over 18 years and I think you will find this discussion fascinating. My key takeaways were:

  • No surprise here. Mobile is an essential and ever-expanding platform for marketers.
  • Shazam in particular offers incredible research capability and can provide engagement statistics by state, longitude and latitude and soon even street-level. Incredibly powerful knowledge
  • Consumers use their mobile devices on the go and during the in-between times. These ‘snacking moments’ and tremendous opportunities for marketers.

[Title graphic from questgarden.com]

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The Importance of Branded Content – Episode #159

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Branded Content

Big media companies like Time Inc and Yahoo (to name just two) are masters of content.

They create the content that gets the attention of consumers. And now big brands are turning to them as a resource for creating branded content.

Today, we are pleased to be joined by Brad Feldman, the Executive Director of Time Inc Branded Solutions.

Brad explains why branded content is an important emerging trend to watch and how brands telling incredible stories and igniting social media conversations.

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