Yearly Archives: 2009

One Show Entertainment Awards Delivers a Much Needed Platform for Branded Entertainment

One Show Entertainment, the branded entertainment awards, is doing it again this year.

The One Club is gearing up for its annual One Show Entertainment in LA where they bring the best branded entertainment of the year to Tinsel Town. Last year’s winners included some familiar names such as Scorsese, CAA and yours truly, as well as a few talented up-and-comers like’s Dennis Liu. Presenters included Mad Men creator Matt Weiner and director Brett Ratner, and this year’s show on February 17th at The American Cinematheque’s Egyptian Theater promises to be even bigger and better…


If you want to enter work, visit by December 11. This year’s judging panel features chairman Jae Goodman from CAA, Andrew Keller from CP+B, Evan Shapiro from the Sundance Channel and other movers and shakers from both advertising and entertainment.




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Addressing the “Church-State Wall” in Branded Entertainment

As President of a branded entertainment agency, Scott Donaton wrote an article on AdAge where he addressed whether or not branded entertainment has a place in the magazine world.  Based on his discussion, we summarized some points we find very interesting and added a few thoughts.


1. What’s the Church-State Wall?

A wall that “editors” (using print terms to project the editorial integrity of the article) use to protect their editorial integrity. Often times this wall prevents room for innovation and creativity in the branded entertainment arena. While brands are paying dollars to leverage editorial resources, they are also tightly restricted in pushing the envelope and making a great branded entertainment platform reach its maximum potential. 

2. Why do consumers fear branded entertainment?

With branded entertainment, there’s a fear that brands are trying to deceive the “reader.” Some people feel brands use original content to trick consumers. No doubt, the fact that brands can overreach and trespass the boundaries of what’s selling vs. what’s authentic to the “reader,” is a key concern for editors. (Again, using print terms, though we think Scotts reference applies to any media with editorial resources)

3. Making Branded Entertainment Worthy via Cultural Currency

Branded entertainment simply cannot be viewed as original content to trick viewers. There’s an inherent value that a brand can create via original content to engage consumers. It’s well beyond an interruptive 30 second spot. At OE, we tend to use the term cultural currency, a value that original content can create for the brand that hits home with consumers. People are genuinely interested in the messages that integrate into their interests and lifestyles. To Scott’s point, whether it’s branded or unbranded, shouldn’t we be talking about a fair value exchange?


Dexter ads from last year re-imagined magazine covers. (Source Adage)


Please feel free to share your thoughts on this topic…



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TWEED Flashback


This week we unveil the Christmas cheers from Gap that will likely be driving you batty by December 25th and what companies are vying for your Thanksgiving attention.

Something to Rah-Rah-Rah about for Christmas, New York Times, 11.11.09
Brands and Media Look to Grow Audience with Holiday Turkey Talk, AdAge 11.09.09


Great minds think alike, right? TWEED Flashback is helping minds connect by scouring the web once-a-week for any and all relevant entertainment, branded content and industry stories. Get a heads up and stay in the know with TWEED Flashback.


Flip’s Quest in First Major Ad Push Become a Lifestyle Brand, AdAge, 11.09.09
Flip has signed on the likes of Usher, Stevie Wonder, Samuel Jackson, and Tony Hawk in a giant advertising push.

Health Site Sharecare Recruits Dove, Dr. Oz for 2010 Launch, AdAge, 11.10.09
Oprah’s Dr. Oz has signed on to promote Sharecare,

Something to Rah-Rah-Rah about for Christmas, New York Times, 11.11.09
Gap and others are promoting their Christmas lines through musical numbers and accompanying websites, like

Wendy’s Hunts for Bacon Lovers in Social Media, Brandweek, 11.12.09
Wendy’s is promoting its new Applewood Smoke Bacon sandwich through a huge social media campaign centered on Twitter contests based on users performing different tasks, like updating about bacon or knowing how many bacon slices the new sandwich has.

Value of Branded Content Can Be Measured,
MarketingWeek, 11.11.09
The Branded Content Marketing Association has secured support to develop its service to measure the effectiveness of all forms of branded content.

Online Ads are Booming, if They’re Attached to a Video, New York Times, 11.10.09
Many major news sites- including and are adding more video to their sites in order to keep pace with the demands of advertisers.

With $100M Saturation Campaign, Droid Will Be Impossible to Avoid,
AdAge, 11.09.09
The Droid campaign- Verizon’s biggest ever- will be everywhere.

Brands and Media Look to Grow Audience with Holiday Turkey Talk
, AdAge 11.09.09
Food Network, Epicurious, and Butterball go head to head to own Thanksgiving.

Lou Dobbs Leaving CNN, TVNEWSER, 11.11.09
Lou Dobbs surprised many by announcing that he is walking away from CNN.

CNN Cuts Back on a Web Video Project,
New York Times, 11.12.09
CNN has laid off the 4 anchors who served its live video network available only online, putting the kibosh on one of the Internet’s biggest news experiments.

The Who to Perform at SuperBowl,
Reuters, 11.13.09
The Who will perform in the Superbowl’s half-time show.

Lopez Tonight- TV Review, Hollywood Reporter, 11.10.09
TBS premiered its very own late night talk show starring George Lopez.


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Video of the Week: The Best of Us Challenge


The International Olympics Committee (IOC) is in the midst of “The Best of Us Challenge” where viewers are challenged to out do their favorite athletes in out-of-the-ordinary and wacky activities. Viewers are encouraged to submit videos in hopes of not only besting the athletes, but also winning signed merchandise or a trip to the Vancouver Winter Olympics. Viewers could also create and submit their own challenge.


This campaign reaches consumers through multiple social media outlets: facebook fan page, twitter and youtube, which is the platform for the campaign.

If you think you beat Michael Phelps by hitting more than twelve 5-foot puts in 60 seconds or you can pick up and carry more tennis balls than Rafael Nadal in 30 seconds, check out these video challenges and submit your entries! (Off the record, I did beat Barbara Kendall in her challenge by drawing 34 smiley faces in 30 seconds—she got 24 ? )




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Sesame Street: Teaches us more than 1,2,3,4

You may have noticed Google’s ongoing tribute to Sesame Street this week – featuring iconic characters such as Big Bird, Bert & Ernie, Cookie Monster and Elmo. Yesterday’s homepage showcased The Count, which really got me thinking about the number of ways that Sesame Street has influenced our lives over the years.



In The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell analyzes the ‘Stickiness Factor’ of Sesame Street, explaining how the makers of the show use robust research to tailor programs that are able to hold the short attention span of their target audience. By employing repetitive messaging, writers are able to actually have the kids walk away remembering something. But I think Sesame Street’s significance goes beyond letters and numbers and segment recall.


Its content and characters have often served as a supplement to pop culture and a political meter of the times. Remember when Mr. Hooper died of AIDS, and the scandal behind Bert & Ernie living together? Or when stars like Michael Jordan, Gloria Estefan or even Chris Brown were featured? You know you’ve made it in Hollywood if you end up sitting on the stoop on Sesame Street, chatting it up with Big Bird and Elmo.

One of my most recent favorites was when Feist appeared to perform a re-make of her song “1,2,3,4”—revised to count to the number four with Monsters and Penguins on the show. The producers of Sesame Street understand that kids these days absorb far more media than children thirty (or even ten) years ago. To acknowledge this new attentiveness to media, they are integrating elements of pop culture and technology back into their show to keep viewers engaged.

Just take a look at the show’s website: They understand that kids are online early, and have developed a host of interactive games for children (along with tools for parents). Elmo’s Keyboard-O-Rama keeps children engaged by reacting to the letter or number they press on their computer keyboards. There is even a customizable section for you and your child.



From the beginning, Sesame Street has excelled at creating characters that people develop lasting connections with. I still feel connected to the characters on the show, and still wonder if anyone will ever believe Big Bird that Snaffalupagus exists. But it’s the show’s winning mix of endearing characters and cultural relevancy that makes it uniquely successful.

Whether Sesame Street employs pop culture (as with Feist’s “1,2,3,4”) or pop culture employs Sesame Street (as with this interesting post outlining five blogging techniques that one can learn from the show, there’s no doubt that the show continues to stay current.

From marketing proof for Gladwell’s "Stickiness Factor" to CopyBlogger’s social media lessons, Sesame Street’s reach continues to defy the rules of children’s programming (whilst still creating genuine, lifelong connections).

Happy 40th Anniversary Sesame Street!


Check out Big Bird’s appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live: 



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