Monthly Archives: April 2011

Baseball on Broadway: The MLB Fan Cave

By Arwa Mahdawi

If you locked me in a room and forced me to watch 2,430 Major League Baseball games then I’d most likely go mad. It’d only take a couple of games before I’d start trying to break free. Nevertheless my idea of hell seems to be a lot of Americans’ idea of the dream job.  When the MLB announced a contest to find two super-fans who would be paid to watch every single MLB game in a glass-walled ‘Fan Cave’, nearly 10,000 people applied. The lucky winners, Mike O’Hara and Ryan Wagner, were announced at the end of March and have been comfortably ensconced in the Cave for almost a month now.  Just seven months left to go, then.

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But probably even the most die-hard baseball fan would get bored of seeing a couple of guys watch a lot of baseball.  What makes the MLB Fan Cave really interesting is how it takes a gimmicky idea and transforms it into engaging content with longevity. Indeed, its location on Broadway is rather apt, with one MLB staffer describing it as  “an ongoing Broadway show.”

Regular webisodes and daily live check-ins with the crew of MLB Network give viewers a reason to keep up-to-date with the progress of O’Hara and Wagner.  Baseball talent and other celebrities also frequently pop into the Cave, providing fodder for content as well as a reason for fans to keep checking back.  In addition a performance window onto Broadway plays host to a variety of live acts for fans. The content is all housed on the MLB Blog as well as social media channels.

The Fan Cave is geared up for maximum social media involvement. People walking outside are encouraged to “tweet at the cavemen!” via touch screens. @MLBFanCave (5,320 followers) provides regular updates and O’Hara (@mikeyoh21; 2,297 followers) and Wagner (@rwags614; 1,600 followers) regularly tweet.  Twitter is also being used in more creative ways: Pepsi Max, an MLB partner, recently held a twitter scavenger hunt in the vicinity of the Cave for fans. And, at the moment, you can help O’Hara get the Beastie Boys to the Cave by tweeting them and asking them to do a concert at the Cave.

Baseball is at the heart of the Fan Cave but it’s also a vehicle which brings to life the way we’re all now consuming entertainment. Tim Bronsan, the Executive Vice President of MLB described the Cave as a “convergence of baseball with pop culture, social media, technology, celebrity, entertainment, music and art.” It’s also a convergence of baseball with complementary partners: Sony, Lazboy, Stanley Black and Decker and DreamSeat are just some of the brands partnered with the Cave.

The Fan Cave is live for the next seven months so, if you’re in NY, take the opportunity to go down and tweet at the Cavemen for yourself.

TWEED Flashback

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.

ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

Lady Gaga To Donate $1 Million via Crowdsourced Charity Contest Mashable 4.26.11

Whatever people may say about Lady Gaga, she has been a positive influence in the philanthropic world. And now she has partnered with the Robin Hood Foundation to launch two Facebook contests to support the New York-based charity, which benefits the poor and homeless.

TruTV Rewards ‘Operation Repo’ Fans for ‘Liking’ Show With Facebook-Only Episode AdAge 4.26.11

Network’s Successful Social Campaign Aimed at Reaching 500,000 Likes Is a Milestone for the Industry. In the brave new world of social TV, viewers get rewarded for liking a show with — what else? — more show.

HOW TO: Follow the Royal Wedding Online Mashable 4.26.11

It will be easy enough to follow along on TV with nearly every major news network running of hours of coverage ahead of the wedding which takes place at 10 a.m. BST (9 a.m. GMT, 2 a.m. PT, 5 a.m. ET). There are, however, plenty of options for getting your Royal Wedding fix online.

ADVERTISING NEWS

Coca-Cola’s Recycled Pop-Up Store PSFK 4.26.11

During the Passover holiday, Coca-Cola Israel launched its unique pop-up store for recycled products. In a central location in Tel Aviv, the Israeli marketing agency, Promarket created the concept and decided it would be an appropriate time for increasing awareness around environmental renewal and sustainability.

Yahoo Snaps Up Social TV Service IntoNow AdWeek 4.26.11

IntoNow is based on an iPhone app that can “hear” and detect the television show a user is watching and “check in” to the program, much in the way Foursquare allows users to check in to physical locations.  Reports have twelve-week-old company worth as much as $30 million.

The Spot: Call of the Wild AdWeek 4.26.11

Japanese agency builds a giant xylophone to pitch a cell phone. This abstract and artful Japanese cell-phone spot, which will surely be among the most discussed and awarded ads of 2011, drew its inspiration from a single product feature: the wooden casing around the Touch Wood SH-08C handset.

BRANDED ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

Tiffany Puts a Lock On It BrandChannel 4.26.11

Tiffany’s new collection expands its signature lock motif in a new jewelry line that ranges from $80 to $6,000. The new shoot, styled by red carpet power stylist Estee Stanley, also marks a departure from Tiffany’s more traditional campaigns, such as the recent “True Love Grows.”

Coca-Cola Open Happiness Campaign Keeps on Rolling BrandChannel 4.26.11

Coca-Cola’s Open Happiness campaign that launched with a musical splash during American Idol in 2009 has taken its message on the road with a CLIO award-winning Happiness Machine with a sense of humor; a Happiness Truck, dispensing soft drinks and fun items in Brazil and beyond; and a Happiness Store, offering convenience and smiles (also in Brazil).

Morgan Spurlock, Still Selling, Adds Old Navy, Trident and Others to Roster in ‘Greatest Movie Ever Sold’ AdAge 4.19.11

Morgan Spurlock’s take on product placement, “POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold,” may have struggled at first to attract sponsors, but its marketing woes are officially over.

SOCIAL MEDIA & TECH NEWS

Vevo Now Available in the UK Mashable 4.26.11

Before, UK users could only access limited Vevo content through YouTube, but now they will be able to check out music videos, original series, live events, etc. through VEVO.co.uk or via VEVO mobile (including Android, iPhone, iPod touch and iPad). UK users can also create playlists (Vevo will be providing a Royal Wedding playlist, naturally), favorite videos and share those vids though Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook’s Two Deal Weapons: The Social Graph and Credits NYT 4.26.11

As expected, Facebook has launched its group-buying effort in five cities today, including Dallas and San Diego.

Groupon Wannabe PeopleDeals Pitches Improved Dealmaking AdWeek 4.26.11

PeopleString, a two-year-old startup which manages a social media-centric affiliate program, has launched PeopleDeals, a group coupon product which employs what the company claims is a unique, proprietary sharing technology. Discounts get better the more they are shared.

TWEED Video of the Week: ‘Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold’

Today is the box office release of the long awaited “Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold,” a Docbuster, as writer, director and actor Morgan Spurlock describes it.

I was fortunate enough to get a sneak peak of the film this past week and enjoyed the cameos of the many industry leaders who were featured, such as Richard Kirshenbaum, Jon Bond, Bob Friedman, Michael Kassan, among others.

Stuart Elliott wrote a piece yesterday, “Film on Branded Content Examines a Blurred Line,” which opens by describing his story as follows: “THIS article about advertising is about a documentary about advertising that its makers say is entirely paid for by advertising.”  If you see the movie, let us know what you think!

TWEED Flashback

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.

ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

YouTube To Stream Royal Wedding Live Mashable 4.19.11

YouTube plans to live stream the wedding of Britain’s Prince William and Catherine Middleton on April 29, the online video service announced Tuesday.

Beijing International Film Festival to Feature Documentary Competition The Hollywood Reporter 4.19.11

Just days ahead of the start of the First Beijing International Film Festival, organizers announced on Tuesday an additional part of the program, a contest for Best Documentary Short called “See the world through films.”

Festival de Cannes Reveals Jury Members The Hollywood Reporter 4.19.11

Robert De Niro will be joined by A-list goodfellas at this year’s Festival de Cannes with fellow jury members set to include Jude Law, Olivier Assayas and Uma Thurman, the festival announced on Tuesday.

ADVERTISING NEWS

Facebook Courts Ad Agencies With New Site Mashable 4.19.11

In an attempt to build relationships in the advertising industry, Facebook revealed Facebook Studio, a “place to celebrate innovation, creativity and effectiveness” on the platform.

Most Marketers Plan to Increase Social Media Spend This Year Mashable 4.19.11

An overwhelming number of marketers consider social media to be integral to their strategies this year, and 70% plan to increase their social media budget by more than 10% this year, according to a poll from Effie Worldwide and Mashable.

Is Online Video Ready for the $100 Million Advertising Challenge? AdAge 4.19.11

At the end of 2010, the leader of one of the world’s largest media agencies inquired of me on behalf of the CMO of a brand we all know: “Our client wishes to shift $100 million dollars of spend into online and mobile video advertising tomorrow can it or even should it be done?”

BRANDED ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

Sofia Vergara, David Beckham Goof Off for Diet Pepsi AdWeek 4.19.11

There’s been a lengthy lead-up to this new Diet Pepsi spot starring Modern Family’s Sofia Vergara and soccer star David Beckham.

Branded Entertainment: P&G And Walmart To Continue “Family Movie Night” PSFK 4.19.11

Procter & Gamble and Walmart’s Family Movie Night partnership, which launched this time last year on NBC, has proved so successful that they have announced five further family-friendly productions for this year. Research indicates that families across America want more entertainment options that are family-oriented so they can sit down and watch TV together as a group

Nokia Gets Exclusive on NFC-Enabled Angry Birds Game Mashable 4.19.11

The company disclosed on its blog Tuesday that a new game, Angry Birds Free With Magic, contains 20 levels, 15 of which can only be activated by touching your near field communications-enabled phone with another NFC phone.

TWEED Video of the Week: The T-Mobile Royal Wedding

“As the world prepares for the nuptials of Prince William and Kate Middleton, T-Mobile decided to have some fun by putting out a spoof video of the royal wedding party dancing down the aisle.

An homage to the wedding video that became a YouTube viral sensation a couple of years ago, the T-Mobile version features some pretty good look-alikes for various members of the royal family.

The actual wedding takes place on April 29.” -Gossip Cop