The Monthly Report Card: August

Showcasing industry best practices and providing insight into best use of celebrities and influencers.

(1). Nike – Serena Williams

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Grade A+

Nike’s new Just Do It “Voice of Belief” ad features footage of Serena Williams as a young girl and it is awe-inspiring. The video cuts back and forth between clips and young Serena practicing her serve under her father’s instruction and present-day Serena, the world renown tennis superstar. The video tugs at the heart strings a bit as you see just how far Williams has come. Williams shared the video on twitter and some words of wisdom to all of the dreamers of the world, “If you don’t dare to try and chase your dreams, you’ll rob yourself the joy of doing it. Don’t just dream it.#JustDoIt.”

(2). Land O’ Lakes – Maggie Rose and Liz Rose

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Grade A

Land O’ Lakes’s feminist spin-off of “Old Macdonald” aired on Women’s Equality Day—which celebrated its 98th anniversary of women’s suffrage this year. “She-I-O” celebrates the whopping number of female farmers in America—a group of women often overlooked. The term farmer has long been deemed as a man’s job. Liz Rose wrote the melody for female farmers who are ‘rewriting farming’ – after all women make up 30% of all U.S. farmers . The classic nursery rhyme spin-off launched Land O’ Lakes’s “All Together Better,” campaign, re-positioning the company as an agricultural cooperative that embraces female farmers.

(3). Samsung Galaxy Watch – Rita Ora

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Grade B

Samsung’s new Galaxy watch boasts its enduring battery and standalone LTE. The commercial captures a woman leaving her house in the morning and follows her through her overnight in the woods and into the next day. There was no need for her to bring a charger but not just because there are no outlets in the woods. The new watch has an unparalleled battery life. The ad also hones in on the smartwatch’s music and health monitoring features all to the tune of British singer Rita Ora’s song “Stay Connected Longer”. Despite the songs popularity it didn’t work well with the vibe or message of the ad’s video content.

(4). Chef Boyardee – Lil Yachty and Donny Osmand

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Grade B

Lil Yachty and Donny Osmond collaborated on a long overdue remix of Chef Boyardee’s 80s jingle, “Thank Goodness for Chef Boyardee,” and we are thankful they did. “Start the Par-dee” has a much-needed modern spin. Osmand’s role narrows the consumer age gap between older generations and young adults, mind you, who are much less familiar with the 90-year-old canned pasta. Despite the odd music video that accompanied it, the jingle is actually quite catchy. The brand chose this unlikely duo in hopes of reclaiming their role as a relevant player in the eyes of younger generations so the effort was certainly there.

(5). NBA 2K – Lebron James

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Grade A+

Lebron James is featured as NBA 2K19’s cover athlete. This is James’s second appearance as 2K’s cover athlete but this year it’s the 20th anniversary special edition. The gold graphics feature phrases like, “KING” and “G.O.A.T.,” which resonates with 2K19’s theme – “to be the best, you have to take down the king.” The video really hit a home run with the music choice – hip-hop artist Jay Rock’s song “Win”. And Lebron was a timely choice for the special edition as he gains momentum for his first season in L.A.

(6). Budweiser x Jim Beam – Kassi Ashton

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Grade B+

Legacy brand’s Budweiser and Jim Beam teamed up on the new Budweiser Reserve Copper Lager. In the introductory ad Bud’s Clydesdales are accompanied by the vocals of country music star Kassi Ashton. The new Copper Lager’s well-timed debut encourages beer and bourbon connoisseurs to clink glasses and celebrate the Repeal of Prohibition’s upcoming 85th anniversary. The collaboration is something truly remarkable in its appeal, uniqueness and history. The ad launches an innovative and exciting new brew – one that revamps traditional American beverage brands.

(7). Snickers – Elton John

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Grade A-

Elton John and Boogie face off in an epic rap battle in the new Snickers candy bar ad. Snickers has long coined the phrase “You always lose your edge when you’re hungry.”  John belts out “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” but because he’s hungry his voice is off-key. Nothing a Snickers can’t fix and with that John transforms into Boogie and steals the show with his epic rap. Snickers makes its big debut in the hip-hop territory and Boogie dabbles with acting for the first time. As the legendary Elton John embarks on his farewell tour, Snickers put forth tremendous effort to appeal to audience members of all ages.

(8.) NFL – Todd Gurley, Christian McCaffrey, Jay Ajayi and DeAndre Hopkins

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Grade A

The NFL kicked off the new season with their “Get Ready to Celebrate” multi-platform ad campaign. The ad focuses on the art of touchdown celebrations. We see Gurley, McCaffrey, Ajayi and Hopkins crafting their end zone dance moves in their free time. The ad is very genuine in its exposure of big-name NFL players as real people captured in very silly but human moments. This ad certainly worked in favor of the NFL rebranding themselves away from the “No Fun League” category, hopefully that will parley onto the field as well.

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