General Motors’ Cadillac division is adding to its “Dare Greatly” campaign with a digital campaign, called “Daring Pursuits.” The effort is from Rokkan, the brand’s social agency of record. It pairs passionate creators from different backgrounds to collaborate and share their unique perspectives. The campaign features the all-new Cadillac XT5 and Bryan Blue, an up-and-coming artist; Stephen Kenn, a couture furniture designer; and Jihan Zencirli, master balloon artist to the stars, and is told through two short videos that live on DareGreatly.com, as well as on streaming video and branded content channels. It is being supported through a content partnership with Vox Media, and will utilize Facebook Canvas, as well as Instagram’s ad Carousel (the first time the brand has used this platform’s video capabilities). “‘Daring Pursuits’ represents the unpredictable nature and process of creativity, which has been a central theme of the ‘Dare Greatly’ brand platform since it launched in 2015,” Ray Warren, Cadillac global manager, social media and digital advertising, tells Marketing Daily. “This latest extension, ‘Daring Pursuits,’ appeals to audiences who are entrepreneurial and unwilling to settle. At the core, the campaign speaks to passion — a universal mindset that is relevant to various audiences, including Generations X and Y.” Via Vox Media, viewers can also find the stories on sites including The Verge, Curbed and Racked. There is also a custom Daring Pursuits content hub tying the pieces all together. “In its current form, ‘Daring Pursuits’ will run through the end of the year,” Warren says. “But we will continue to evolve the broader ‘Dare Greatly’ platform for Cadillac — from which this campaign originates — in the future.”
While its first 365 store has been open only a month, Whole Foods Market executives gave investors a peek into what’s working, and it looks like its “grocerant” offerings, like the vegan By Chloe restaurant, are an early hit. In a presentation at the Oppenheimer Consumer Conference, Whole Foods executives -- including co-founder and co-CEO John Mackey -- revealed some insights. While declining to give sales figures, he did say: “We had to add two more cash registers to the front end, and we’re very happy.” He says the company is busy trying to quickly translate its experience in the first stores as new ones open. For instance, “we didn’t have conveyer belts, because we thought we’d get smaller basket size. But it’s been the opposite.” And as expected, he says the majority of the store’s business is happening at night, which is also when it’s most likely to be full of Gen Y shoppers. “I was eating at By Chloe, which is doing very well, too. And I was the only person there over 30.” Conventional grocers are also targeting Millennials’ fondness for in-store dining. NPD Group says the sale of takeout prepared foods from grocery stores has jumped about 30% since 2008, amounting to $10 billion in spending in 2015, and about 2.4 billion foodservice visits. And consumers say they like eating in grocery stores better than fast-food restaurants, citing fresher food and more varied experiences. Mackey says Whole Foods is continuing to use produce as the main differentiator at 365. “We’ve doubled down on that, and it is driving overall sales.” The main difference between the two, he says, is that 365 is cheaper, “with 7,000 SKUs, not 25,000.” Because labor costs are much lower — there is less service in the meat and seafood departments, for instance — they are also less expensive to run. He says that even with less staff, they are doing just as much business as those departments in its regular stores. And he says it seems clear that the store is attracting a different kind of customer. “I never saw so many Trader Joe’s bags. I joked that we should offer to trade them in, two for one, for our bags, but the team decided that would seem too unfriendly.” At this point, there’s no insight yet on potential cannibalization, because the nearest Whole Foods isn’t close by. But when its store No. 3 in Bellevue Wash., scheduled for September, is a mile from the nearest Whole Foods, “that will tell us more.” When asked about competition from online grocers, Mackey says that while those companies get plenty of attention in the media and from investors, “the biggest threats are legacy supermarkets, such as HEB and Kroger’s.” Part of Whole Foods’ success has been its “unique products, so people will drive further.” But with so many more stores offering natural and organic foods, “they don't have to drive. So convenience is a big factor.”
In case you hadn’t guessed, most of those dudes sporting bushy beards, plaid shirts, jeans and work boots on city streets aren’t really lumberjacks. Hearty-meals brand Dinty Moore, which was named after a lumberjack, is poking fun at these metrosexuals who affect rugged garb — dubbed “lumbersexuals” — by trying to turn them into lumberjacks. For the video- and social media-driven campaign, from BBDO, the brand hired a real lumberjack, named Adrian Flygt, to train some lumbersexuals in the skills of the trade. The plan is to have them compete on July 15 in the Stihl Timbersports U.S. Pro & Collegiate Championships in Chicago, known as “the Olympics of timbersports.” The event’s competitions include wood chopping, axe throwing and sawing. The guys in the videos — who are not actors, according to a brand spokesperson — include an interior house painter, an IT professional, a wedding photographer and an “avid role-playing gamer.” Their bios list hobbies like hip-hop dancing and facial hair primping. And indeed, the training videos show numerous instances (above) of them demonstrating concern about their hair in the midst of trying to perform demanding feats like hitting a target with an ax or manually sawing through a large tree trunk. The real lumberjack, who acknowledges that he had never heard of a lumbersexual until he laid eyes on these men, makes puzzled, deadpan comments about his students, like: “They really worry about how they look, and if they look right, if they look good. They think about looking good like if it makes a good selfie, not looking good like, ‘Am I able to do my logging right?’” A campaign site, moorejacks.com, offers clips from the casting for the campaign, long- and short-form videos of the training sessions, the bios, and links to share the content via Facebook or Twitter. Users are also being encouraged to tag their lumbersexual friends with #moorejacks. The videos are also on Dinty Moore’s YouTube channel.
It’s a partnership you might not have seen coming: Ruby Tuesday is set to open a series of Tesla Supercharger Stations. The first station recently opened at the Ruby Tuesday location in Miner, Missouri with additional stations at other Ruby Tuesday locations currently in the planning stages or under construction. Superchargers are strategically placed to allow Tesla drivers to travel up to 270 miles, take a dining break at Ruby Tuesday and get back on the road at full charge. There seems to be a disconnect between the two companies' target demographics. The fast casual chain has 29 Ruby Tuesday restaurants in 44 states, 13 foreign countries, and Guam. About 6 years ago, the chain was trying to shift from its origins in the bar-and-grill category to a higher-price-point tier. But for the past few years, the chain has been shifting back to its roots, emphasizing value in its marketing. Tesla models start at $70,000 for a base S70 up to $105,000, the base for a P85D (all-wheel drive). The company says its primary target demographic is 30 to 60 years old in upper middle-class families with a household income of $80,000 and higher. As for psychographics, the target is consumers with a concern about gas consumption, economic value in cars who have a desire for an affordable luxury car with high safety value. “We’re thrilled to partner with Tesla Motors to offer our guests a place where they can charge their Tesla vehicle while enjoying a delicious meal,” stated David Skena, chief marketing officer of Ruby Tuesday, in a release. “Expanding the Supercharger network to include Ruby Tuesday is good for both Tesla owners and our restaurants alike. We look forward to deepening our relationship with Tesla and opening additional Supercharger Stations in Ruby Tuesday markets around the country in the near future.” The Tesla Supercharger is substantially more powerful than any existing charging technology, providing up to 120 kilowatts of power and replenishing up to 170 miles of range in 30 minutes. The Tesla Supercharger Station at Ruby Tuesday’s Miner location is now hosted on Tesla’s interactive Web page and in-vehicle navigation. Tesla owners can use the 17” touchscreens in their cars to easily plan trips and locate the property.
Told you so. Told you so. Nyaah nyah nyaah nyah, told you so. Way back last spring, when Facebook’s Instant Stories came to this world, I -- like everyone else in publishing -- considered the possibility of salvation. If publishers were to cede distribution to Facebook, they would not only achieve faster loading speeds and a better user experience, they would benefit by vastly higher reach and at least theoretically -- based on Facebook’s incomparable data set -- significantly higher CPMs. A bigger number times a bigger number = a way bigger revenue number. Boom. Maybe, I mused, Instant Stories were going to be the magic beans to grow a magic beanstalk to plunder the goose that lays the golden eggs. Magic would be most useful at the moment, after all, due to reality totally sucking. But I wasn’t born yesterday, and let’s just call me cautiously pessimistic. Here was one of the concerns I had back in April 2015, were, say, The New York Times to go all in with social media as its principal delivery channel: Facebook would have to be trusted, once becoming the center of the Times distribution world, not to change the rules midstream. Such as, hypothetically, by tweaking the EdgeRank algorithm to influence which articles get into the newsfeeds of whom -- either to squeeze its partners for a bigger rev share or to deemphasize “problematic” content. Of course, they've never pulled such highhanded stunts -- except for, you know, constantly from the beginning. So imagine my non-surprise the other day to see the following headline right here in MediaPost: Facebook Demotes Publisher Content In Newsfeed A unilateral change in terms from Facebook? You could have knocked me over with a feather. Ha ha. Now, as our Eric Sass explained, the adjustments make perfect sense. Publishers were so inundating our newsfeeds with Instant Stories, the news was beginning to crowd out the actual social content. Sometimes you want to learn about scores of innocent people being slaughtered, and sometimes you just want to see Caitlin’s kindergarten graduation pictures. As Facebook Vice President of Product Management Adam Mosseri told the press: “Your average friend probably posts a few things a week, the average publisher you follow probably posts hundreds of things a day. We’ve made some ranking changes to try to better connect people with their friends.” And as such the EdgeRank algorithm has been tweaked to prioritize the genuinely personal. Which, yes, if we’re speaking of social media, makes perfect sense. The fact is, however, as Eric informs us: Earlier this month, a study from SocialFlow found that media companies have seen their average audiences per story decline by 42% from 117,000 in January to just 68,000 in May. Separately, another study from analytics firm SocialWhip found that the combined activity for the ten biggest English-language publishers on Facebook fell from 287 million engagements per month in July 2015 to 162 million per month in April of this year, for a 44% decline over this period. Yikes. Now Eric also reports what he called a potential “silver lining,” namely that when individual users share publisher content, that counts as personal, with all the extra exposure that provides. Which at first glance seems more than a fair and promising outcome for the cream that rises to the top. Except, remember: cautiously pessimistic. This solution seems to promote a sort of social media Darwinism -- survival of the funnest -- that will penalize serious, complex, eat-your-veggies journalism to the benefit of highly shareable fluff. In fact, if you go back to April 2015: Far more than now, the Times and all other Facebook partners would be incented to produce the most shareworthy content for Facebook. Goodbye, Sierra Leone and environmental coverage. Hello, Grumpy cat. Yeah. That’s me. Garfield, the grumpy cat. Dyspeptic, pessimistic, obnoxious…. and tragically correct.
Today’s marketers are faced with a tougher challenge than ever before. Consumer attention spans are shrinking as a result of the seemingly endless barrage of daily content. The challenge for marketers becomes creating compelling and meaningful connections in an environment largely dominated by superficial messaging. This is true across the broad consumer landscape, but especially for the sports industry. The advent of social media, mobile advertising, digital streaming services and more has led to a cacophony of leagues, teams and individual athletes, all with their own unique brands and content, vying for attention. The 2015 Super Bowl, for instance, generated 28.4 million tweets. How many of those were from brands? How many shamelessly asked their followers to act, buy or advocate on behalf of something? Instead, brands need to build connections to the people and stories behind an event, creating a narrative and ecosystem that fans can engage in out of their own interest, and in their own ways. Developing original, story-driven content that provides a behind-the-scenes look at the athletes and their sport fosters a deeper relationship with fans and a greater appreciation for the sport and athletes. For us, the popularity and persistence of reality TV shows like ours (now finishing its 23rd season) demonstrates this inherent interest in the deeper stories. The sports companies themselves are in the best position to create this content. With direct access to athletes, programming and insider knowledge, we can act as master storytellers and traffic-managers for the various narratives being created. Though it can be daunting to maintain so many channels that require unique content and storytelling; each present a unique opportunity to reach a fan — and more importantly, make it convenient for the fan who wants to engage the brand story in a specific way. For example, our content ecosystem includes: cable, Pay-Per View, online streaming, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, earned media, original programing, video games, third-party and owned apps, branded gyms and stores, and of course, live events. This cross-platform content offers fans a variety of ways to engage with the brand and each other, making content easily accessible to where they are and servicing a wider spectrum of customers’ preferences. This is an approach all sports entities can engage. In confronting this new consumer, one who is more distracted and less attentive than ever before, marketers have an important choice to make. They can keep competing for consideration by tugging at the sleeve of their target, or they can choose to tell an arresting story that people not only want to experience and share but will actually seek out.