Posts tagged Branding

Every Fucking Web Site
The morning PSA.
Designers, communicators, marketers and brand strategists: take note.
Personal favorite under header number three: “Because we saw three buckets of shit content on our competitor’s front page and we’re god damned if we’re only gonna have two.” — Michael
H/T: @lorakolodny 

Every Fucking Web Site

The morning PSA.

Designers, communicators, marketers and brand strategists: take note.

Personal favorite under header number three: “Because we saw three buckets of shit content on our competitor’s front page and we’re god damned if we’re only gonna have two.” — Michael

H/T: @lorakolodny 

Branding is not about growing inequality but growing equality. In the old world there were a few big-name hotshot star journalists, and a lot of regular hacks pushing anonymous news. In future more and more journalists will be stars — some big stars shining all over, some smaller but maybe brighter stars twinkling to some important niche audience. And if a journalist has no twinkle whatsoever — then it’s time to find something else to do.

Saska Saarikoski, Brands, Stars and Regular Hacks — a changing relationship between news institutions and journalists (PDF).

Saarikoski, a former culture editor at Finland’s Helsingin Sanomat, conducted surveys and interviews with editors, publishers and reporters about the issues raised by the branding of journalists. The result is this recent report from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

99% Invisible: Episode 63 - The Political Stage

The Seven Secrets of Political Theater

99percentinvisible:

On this special edition of 99% Invisible, we joined forces with Andrea Seabrook of DecodeDC to investigate all the thought that goes into the most miniscule details of a political campaign.

Secret 01: Politicians are brands.

Secret 02: Every campaign has a team of people to reinforce that brand. These are the advance people who show up and stage events with objects (eg., hay bales, backdrops, specific locations, etc.).

Secret 03: Advance teams for both parties run campaigns the same way, with the same considerations.

Secret 04: Every campaign sends out “spies”, or trackers, to follow the other campaign. Bonus half secret: campaigns often become friends with the trackers from the opposing campaign.

Secret 05: Everything is staged. Nothing is extemporaneous. Even the debates. It’s all theater.

Secret 06: No matter how carefully advance teams prepare, things are bound to go wrong. Consider this Murphy’s Law as applied to politics.

Secret 07: Everyone traveling with the campaigns, the advance teams, the candidates and the reporters, hate the music.

Runtime: ~17 minutes. Learn more about 99% Invisible.

When the Going Gets Weird, the Weird Get Weirder
My local watering hole usually has newspapers on the bar counter. Makes for easy reading over a beer.
A few weeks ago I came across this full-page ad in the New York Post. It’s for a “documentary” called “Dreams From My Real Father” and takes birtherism to even weirder, alternative heights.
As Talking Points Memo explains, “Instead of focusing on claims about the president’s Hawaiian birth certificate, the film is narrated by an Obama impersonator and claims the president is a closeted communist, bent on instilling a ‘classic Stalinist-Marxist agenda upon America at home and abroad.’ A disclaimer for the film notes that many of the scenes are ‘re-creations of probable events, using reasoned logic, speculation, and approximated conversations.’”
It does so by claiming that Obama’s real father was Frank Marshall Davis, a former journalist, and civil rights and labor activist. Evidently, he got Obama’s mom pregnant, which was scandalous, so the family invented a Kenyon father instead which was somehow less scandalous.
If you’ve worked in print you know that the ad department looks for advertisers who reflect well on — and reinforce — the brand. Have a luxury magazine, your sales team is looking for luxury brands. Have a sports magazine, your sales team looks for advertisers that reiterate that lifestyle.
If you’re the New York Post? Well, form follows function.
And if you’re from Alabama, your GOP party chair is a nut job.
As The Mobile Press Register recently reported, Bill Armistead was speaking to a Republican Women’s group and had this to say:

“We have to win this election. This is about our country. Our country will not be the same,” Armistead said. “I’m convinced, if Obama wins, our children and grandchildren will not live under the same conditions that we’ve lived in these wonderful years. Obama has a different ideology than we do.”
Armistead suggested that audience members see the movie ‘2016: Obama’s America,’ a documentary by conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza that is critical of the president.
“If you haven’t seen it, you should,” he said. “But I’m going to tell you about another movie. The name of it is ‘Dreams From My Real Father.’ That is absolutely frightening. I’ve seen it. I verified that it is factual, all of it. People can determine.”

People can determine, indeed. — Michael
Image: Full page ad in the New York Post for Dreams from My Real Father.

When the Going Gets Weird, the Weird Get Weirder

My local watering hole usually has newspapers on the bar counter. Makes for easy reading over a beer.

A few weeks ago I came across this full-page ad in the New York Post. It’s for a “documentary” called “Dreams From My Real Father” and takes birtherism to even weirder, alternative heights.

As Talking Points Memo explains, “Instead of focusing on claims about the president’s Hawaiian birth certificate, the film is narrated by an Obama impersonator and claims the president is a closeted communist, bent on instilling a ‘classic Stalinist-Marxist agenda upon America at home and abroad.’ A disclaimer for the film notes that many of the scenes are ‘re-creations of probable events, using reasoned logic, speculation, and approximated conversations.’”

It does so by claiming that Obama’s real father was Frank Marshall Davis, a former journalist, and civil rights and labor activist. Evidently, he got Obama’s mom pregnant, which was scandalous, so the family invented a Kenyon father instead which was somehow less scandalous.

If you’ve worked in print you know that the ad department looks for advertisers who reflect well on — and reinforce — the brand. Have a luxury magazine, your sales team is looking for luxury brands. Have a sports magazine, your sales team looks for advertisers that reiterate that lifestyle.

If you’re the New York Post? Well, form follows function.

And if you’re from Alabama, your GOP party chair is a nut job.

As The Mobile Press Register recently reported, Bill Armistead was speaking to a Republican Women’s group and had this to say:

“We have to win this election. This is about our country. Our country will not be the same,” Armistead said. “I’m convinced, if Obama wins, our children and grandchildren will not live under the same conditions that we’ve lived in these wonderful years. Obama has a different ideology than we do.”

Armistead suggested that audience members see the movie ‘2016: Obama’s America,’ a documentary by conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza that is critical of the president.

“If you haven’t seen it, you should,” he said. “But I’m going to tell you about another movie. The name of it is ‘Dreams From My Real Father.’ That is absolutely frightening. I’ve seen it. I verified that it is factual, all of it. People can determine.”

People can determine, indeed. — Michael

Image: Full page ad in the New York Post for Dreams from My Real Father.

Microsoft’s Grasp of Language
Words taken directly from the Visual Studio 11 Beta site.
Via Matt Gemmell.
Select to embiggen.

Microsoft’s Grasp of Language

Words taken directly from the Visual Studio 11 Beta site.

Via Matt Gemmell.

Select to embiggen.

Is it a Condom or is it an Android?
Des Traynor creates this chart and and offers some free brand and marketing 101, “If your product isn’t a condom then don’t name it like one.” 
H/T: Business Insider.

Is it a Condom or is it an Android?

Des Traynor creates this chart and and offers some free brand and marketing 101, “If your product isn’t a condom then don’t name it like one.” 

H/T: Business Insider.

Lady Gaga's $30 Million Twitter Account

The Wall Street Journal estimates that Lady Gaga’s Twitter account is worth $30 million.

The math is kind of fuzzy but they arrive at the number by saying that her ability to connect with, promote to and otherwise engage with her 20 plus million followers is worth about a third of the estimated $90 million that she earned over the past year.

Twitter’s a cash cow for other celebrities as well:

Reality stars fit right in with Twitter’s instant-fame ethos. The highest celebrity endorsers can earn up to $20,000 for a single tweet, but some companies have offered $100,000 to sponsor a celebrity’s Twitter account, according to Jennifer P. Brown, of social media agent SponsoredTweets. Brown recently received one such offer, but declined as she says the brand in question wasn’t a right fit for the celebrity. She wouldn’t name the brand or celebrity. Reality star Khloe Kardashian’s tweets to her 6.4 million followers are worth $9,100 each, Brown says.

For those curious, the FJP earns approximately zero dollars for our posts but find Twitter invaluable.

The AP Gets a New Look

Late last week the Associated Press announced that they’re rolling out a new visual identity system that’s “designed for the digital era.”

Central to the changes is a new logo.

The new branding was created by Brooklyn-based Objective Subject, who detail their processes here. The video above shows the iterative process Objective Subject took en route to the final logo.

Via Brand New:

The previous logo has been around for so long that it’s hard to imagine anything new taking its place. It also happens to be a perfectly decent logo — easily recognizable and simple. Its main problem, whether on the web or in ink-clogging newspapers, is the thinness of its counterspaces, being too small to hold legibility at smaller sizes. Citing “designed for the digital era” in the press release, the new AP logo is clearly a more multi-platform-friendly rendition that will hold up well at different sizes. It’s easy to miss the nice rhythm and Gestalten-ish ligature of the old logo and it’s quite possible that the logo could have simply been redrawn for better performance but, let’s face it, that thing is thirty years old and I think it’s more disposable than a consumer brand icon like UPS or AT&T. The new logo may feel simple and slightly generic, but it’s concise and strong, especially with the red underscore which I feel will become more identifiable — perhaps almost like National Geographic’s yellow frame — than the “AP” characters.

jaymug:

Lenovo Face Recognition Advertising

jaymug:

Lenovo Face Recognition Advertising

Whether an employer claims ownership of a social media account or not, they cannot ‘own’ the relationship between users and that account. And there will be as many relationships as users. Some passive; some collaborative; some neglected; some exploitative.
Before the Age of Social Media, a journalist’s belongings consisted of a pen, paper, and maybe her roladex. Today, the accounts from which they tweet and post are becoming valuable assets, too.

In the Online Journalism Blog the occurrence of Laura Kusenssberg and her withdrawal from BBC for ITV is referenced to exemplify why this matters in a real world application. The underlying question here is ‘do journalists have ownership of the brand they create or is the organization they are associated with have rights to the users?’
Going for the Rebrand, Maybe Not So Much for the Win
The Newspaper Association of America is out with a new marketing campaign with the ad above being tested in eight markets across the country.
Writing in Editor & Publisher, Gretchen Peck gives the campaign a thumbs up, stating that it tells the story of a dynamic industry that’s “not dead”.
"Literally, everyone at the agency, everyone on our committee, and then everyone on the board had a 100-percent positive reaction to that headline," says Donna Barrett, president and CEO of Community Newspaper Holdings, Inc. about the new “Smart is the new sexy” motto. “It sets a fun new tone for [the industry]. Who doesn’t want to be perceived as both smart and sexy? And if you can tie the two together? All the better!”
But can we get a copy editor in the room?
As Chris Rovzar writes in New York Magazine, the “X is the new Y” construction does not mean that both X and Y still hold. It means Y has been supplanted:

"Smart is the new sexy" means that smart has replaced sexy as… the thing that people want to be? I guess? It doesn’t mean “smart IS sexy.” It means that smart and sexy are two very distinct things that actually can’t co-exist because one’s toppling the other. So you’re deciding to be smart instead of sexy. Which is fine! But not what these people are trying to say.

Maybe the copy editors were canned in a newsroom consolidation.
Source: Editor & Publisher | New York Magazine.

Going for the Rebrand, Maybe Not So Much for the Win

The Newspaper Association of America is out with a new marketing campaign with the ad above being tested in eight markets across the country.

Writing in Editor & Publisher, Gretchen Peck gives the campaign a thumbs up, stating that it tells the story of a dynamic industry that’s “not dead”.

"Literally, everyone at the agency, everyone on our committee, and then everyone on the board had a 100-percent positive reaction to that headline," says Donna Barrett, president and CEO of Community Newspaper Holdings, Inc. about the new “Smart is the new sexy” motto. “It sets a fun new tone for [the industry]. Who doesn’t want to be perceived as both smart and sexy? And if you can tie the two together? All the better!”

But can we get a copy editor in the room?

As Chris Rovzar writes in New York Magazine, the “X is the new Y” construction does not mean that both X and Y still hold. It means Y has been supplanted:

"Smart is the new sexy" means that smart has replaced sexy as… the thing that people want to be? I guess? It doesn’t mean “smart IS sexy.” It means that smart and sexy are two very distinct things that actually can’t co-exist because one’s toppling the other. So you’re deciding to be smart instead of sexy. Which is fine! But not what these people are trying to say.

Maybe the copy editors were canned in a newsroom consolidation.

Source: Editor & Publisher | New York Magazine.

Personal branding is fundamentally about how to distinguish yourself from those with whom you share general characteristics. That is to say, your brand is your intrinsically unique set of qualities that give you value. If you want the people with whom you interact professionally to see your singular value, you first have to be aware of it yourself first.

Veteran journalists condemn digital journalists for marketing themselves bysuggesting that it compromises integrity.

Is this valid? Can journalism stand alone without personal branding or would it be streams of words without identity?

Jennifer Gaie Hellum, Brazen Life. "A Fight in the Journalism World Invites Questions About Personal Branding & Integrity"

Who Owns a Journalists' Twitter Account?

Reportr has a head scratcher about BBC News political correspondent Laura Kuenssberg and her Twitter account.

Under her @BBCLauraK handle she’d built up a following of almost 60,000 people. Now that she’s moving on to ITVNews the question is does she need to give it up?

The simple thing would be to change the handle to @ITVLauraK but life isn’t always so simple. Instead, she’s starting from scratch.

Via Reportr:

Social media creates an opportunity for journalists to interact on a personal level with audiences.

Even if an account is branded as a “BBC” journalist, it blurs the traditional barrier between the professional and personal as tweets tend to reflect the personality of the reporter.

It marks a further step in the shift from the institutional to the individual brand of the journalist, identified by the State of the Media report in 2009: “Through search, e-mail, blogs, social media and more, consumers are gravitating to the work of individual writers and voices, and away somewhat from institutional brand.”

On the one hand, having BBC attached to your name will get you more attention. On the other, having LauraK attached to its brand gets the BBC added attention.

Something to think about if you slap your organization’s call letters before your name.

Current TV gets a brand makeover.
Via UnderConsideration:

Current needed an extreme statement to indicate a completely new direction and almost erase its previous history to establish a new reputation. A flag, signaling they have arrived and that they stand for a specific kind of journalism, is exactly what they needed. And it looks awesome. Conceived as a moving logo first and static logo second, the execution is dynamic, bold, and innovative without feeling like it’s trying hard to be cool and relevant. The black and white approach also gives it a sharp edge in contrast to all the colorful identities found on TV. The identity applications and on-air look are still limited but everything shows plenty of promise. So far, one of my favorite logos of the year.

Current TV gets a brand makeover.

Via UnderConsideration:

Current needed an extreme statement to indicate a completely new direction and almost erase its previous history to establish a new reputation. A flag, signaling they have arrived and that they stand for a specific kind of journalism, is exactly what they needed. And it looks awesome. Conceived as a moving logo first and static logo second, the execution is dynamic, bold, and innovative without feeling like it’s trying hard to be cool and relevant. The black and white approach also gives it a sharp edge in contrast to all the colorful identities found on TV. The identity applications and on-air look are still limited but everything shows plenty of promise. So far, one of my favorite logos of the year.