post Category: Celebrities,Fashion,Music post Comments (0) postMarch 24, 2011

That is all i could say when I recently heard of Kanye West‘s fragrance deal with Parlux Fragrances.  Sure, Kanye’s music is ah-mazing, his style is iconic and his personality is… vibrant, but really, what self-respecting consumer wants to smell like this rapper??  Certainly not me, and I can’t see real Kayne fans going out to their closest department store to pick up a bottle.

Although I’m sure Mr. West will make a hefty profit from the sales of this fragrance, I sincerely find this example of co-branding unfitting, and does not do a very good job of promoting Kanye’s hard and intimidating image.

Please enjoy a few of my other favorite co-branding attempts fails.

Justin Bieber nail polish with Nicole by OPI

The collection is called One Less Lonely Girl, and each color features heart-shaped glitter.  Normally I am not a hater of the Biebs, but really?? Once again, I’m sure Justin has made some major $ from this, but I am 96.2% sure that Justin does not wear nail polish, nor does the majority of 16 year old boys out there.

Kim Kardashian for QuickTrim

The socialite and reality tv star, Kim Kardashian, is known for her incredible curves and perfectly toned body.  She tells young girls everywhere to embrace their curves, and does photo shoots without retouching or photoshopping.  She also has other co-branding deals with Carl’s Jr. fast food and Famous Cupcakes.  She professes that she works out hard, but still indulges just like any other real woman out there.  Yet, besides her body image confidence she exudes, Kim is a spokesperson for QuickTrim, a non-FDA approved weight loss supplement, in which she faithfully promotes and uses frequently.  This is completely contradictory, as she tells women to embrace their natural bodies and curves, yet she is pretty much lying to her fans.

Maybe in a perfect world, we will have women endorsing nail polish, overweight folks recommending diet pills and cosmetic companies promoting perfume, but I guess that just wouldn’t be what 2011 is all about.

post Category: Celebrities,Food,Online Finds post Comments (0) postMarch 23, 2011

When I first saw the title of this video, I had no idea how it was allowed on Youtube, but once I saw that it was actually smartwater’s channel, I knew it had the potential to be epic.

Jennifer Aniston has been involved with the endorsement of smartwater since 2007, and this has continued with this viral video being recently released on March 7th.  Within 24 hours of the video’s upload, the online interest of smartwater tripled, and within the first week, the video had 7 million hits on Youtube.

So check out Jennifer Aniston’s Sex Tape!!

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Logan McLean, another Comm 296 student, notes in her blog that…

“The advertisement has overall been successful with respect to the first step of AIDA. Smartwater sure has captured the attention of millions of consumers on the internet.”

Another marketing focused blog, Don’t Drink the Koolaid, points out that…

“The most common videos that are shared via YouTube, Facebook and Twitter have one or all four for the following components:

1) It’s full of humor.

2) It has a good looking girl/guy.

3) It’s short, fast-paced and to the point.

4) It has music.”

Smartwater manages to cram all these four components into one advertisement.  Also, since the video is titled “Jennifer Aniston goes viral – smartwater”, the company achieved it’s goal of actually making this a viral video

One question that comes to mind when analyzing this video, is that did this video become viral because of the inappropriate quirky title, or because of the inclusion of prior viral videos, or because of the popularity of the product?  Also, I’m not convinced that this video accomplishes ALL three objectives of advertising. Yes, it informs that the commercial is about smartwater, but it does not inform the consumer of any of the benefits of the product, nor really persuade anyone to purchase it.  BUT, since there is so many dimensions to this ad, whenever a viewer thinks of dancing babies, double rainbows, or Keenan Cahill, they will also associate that with Miss Aniston whipping her hair back and forth.

But other than that issue, I would enjoy watching Jennifer Aniston’s sex tape any day of the week.

post Category: Fashion post Comments (0) postMarch 16, 2011

What do you think of when you hear “Joe”?  A friend, a restaurant, a celebrity???  Well I think of the clothing line.  Joe Fresh, to be specific, is an awesome brand that provides incredibly cute, fashionable and affordable clothing for women, men and children.

I am in love with their shoe selection, and I never leave without buying a pair of flats/rubber boots/heels in hand.  The only downside to Joe, is the store that it is associated with.  I am always hesitant to tell people where I bought my cute sweater or comfy sweats from, as sometimes I receive some funny looks.  My family, friends and I are completely obsessed, but the big secret, Joe is Superstore’s clothing line.  I know, I know, I buy my clothes at a grocery store, it’s weird.  But honestly, I can’t get enough of it.  Joe’s creative director, Joseph Mimran is a renowned fashion designer, who created also Club Monaco and has now developed a brand that is accessible, extremely fashionable, and has transformed Superstore, to capture more than just the grocery shopping crowd, and has attracted the Canadian fashionistas.  Joe has recently expanded to a cosmetics lines and bath products, such as body washes, soaps and lotions.


This brand is exclusively sold at Superstores and Loblaws, but a new store has even recently been opened in downtown Vancouver that is specifically a specialized Joe Store.  Although one may not associate value with this brand, Joe has exceeded expectations, and it growing everyday in popularity.  This private label brand has been featured in every Canadian magazine out there, and will soon be expanding globally to the United States.  My friends and I have gotten over our embarrassment, and now when asked where we purchased those fantastic flats, we proudly say “It’s Joe”, and usually plan our next trip to our local Superstore as soon as possible.

post Category: Food post Comments (0) postMarch 9, 2011

My all time favorite combination is chocolate and mint.  Hands down.  You can’t go wrong with chocolate and mint.  Immediately what comes to mind and makes me drool is 1) mint chocolate chip ice cream, 2) Junior Mints and 3) GIRL GUIDE COOKIES!! Subsequent to reading Sarah Manifold’s Marketing blog (another Comm 296 student), “The Real Cookie Monsters”, the nostalgia kicked in and I couldn’t help but remember the days where I went door to door selling these gems, and begging my mom to buy like 7 boxes to keep for our house.

Girl Guides uses a very exclusive distribution strategy for getting their cookies to their loyal customers.  Girl Guide cookies cannot be bought at any retail store, online or from the manufacturer.  Although exclusive, it is not hard to come by these treats.  Girl Guides go door to door to sell, and manage to capture a huge market of consumers.  As Sarah Manifold points out,

It is very rare that someone needs to go searching for Girl Guide cookies – they find you.  Their distribution is convenient and personal. By going door to door, the consumer doesn’t even have to leave their house to receive the cookies. By setting up tables outside of busy grocery stores and shopping centres, they are able to capture impulse buyers.

I definitely agree with Sarah’s comments, and most definitely cannot wait to get my hands on a box as soon as I can!

post Category: Food post Comments (0) postMarch 2, 2011

How obnoxious is it when you see the coolest product EVER next to the checkout line at the store, and make that last minute decision to buy it, but to your extreme disappointment, it sucks.  Yes? No?  Well it has happened to me multiple times unfortunately.  Am I just super naive, or is it the last minute decisions that throw me off my regular product evaluation process?  Here are 2 super sucky products that I have recently purchased….

Ice Breakers Ice Cubes Gum

When I first saw these at the gas station, I couldn’t help myself.  This gum was so unique, as each piece of is an individual cube, very similar to an actual ice cube, and even has little sparkly flavor crystals.  The shape was unrivaled and I had never seen anything like it before, so I immediately bought it.  Subsequent to my opening of the cute, little, colorful package, I popped a cube into my mouth and began to chew.  Despite my excitement, the tasty flavor was gone within less than 5 minutes and the consistency felt similar to chewing a small rock.  I was not impressed and angry that I wasted my money on such a terrible product.  Two weeks later, I bought the same product again.  And of course I regretted it.  The word “NEW” in big letters, the fancy fruity flavors and tremendously colorful package apparently gave me a new found hope.  Sincerely Disappointing.

Aquafina Plus+ Vitamins — Pomegranate and Yumberry

How delicious does Pomegranate and Yumberry sound?!?  I mean, it’s called Yumberry!  Well, its not yummy in the least bit.  At all.  For being flavored water with only 10 calories, I have no idea how they could make it so sugary,with almost a syrup consistency.  I was a huge fan of this brand’s other flavors, but after trying this particular, I have been turned off of the pretty bottle, elaborate flavors and healthy attributes.

post Category: Fashion,Friends post Comments (0) postFebruary 24, 2011

Branding.  Not just applicable to consumer products.  But also very significant to humans.  When we step out of the house in the morning, the way we present ourselves leaves a lasting impression on our friends and even strangers.  Clothing, hair, shoes, accessories; they all help to create a self image.  Branding adds value, and the way we package ourselves can help us win over an interviewer, or even get kicked out of a bar.  So today, I have decided to analyze my friends (with their hesitant permission of course), how they present themselves in different settings and what attracts me to them.






After analyzing these photos with the best third person perspective that I could given the circumstances, I noticed something very interesting.  The describing attributes used for these photos are almost completely opposite from my friends’ actual personalities.  For example, my sister, described as “carefree, fun and easygoing” does not illustrate her AT ALL.  It’s compelling how facial expression, background, and a few articles of clothing can affect how an observer translates a message, even though the actual product may be extremely mismatched.  This reminds me of the baby carrots products we studied in class.  The marketers were trying to promote baby carrots as junk food with the way they were packaged, even though this couldn’t be further from what the product actually is.  The way marketers can captivate a consumer, and the way individuals can fascinate strangers just by what they throw on in the morning will continue to dazzle for a long time to come.

post Category: Cars,Celebrities,Music post Comments (0) postFebruary 6, 2011

Now that the Packers have claimed their title, the newspapers have been printed, and the celebration ends, the real Superbowl fun begins… re-watching the commercials!!  Although I missed most of the game due to my work schedule, I was sure to check out promptly for his picks of the best ads from Sunday’s game.  One of his favorites which instantly caught my eye was the Glee Chevy commercial.  Being the Gleek that I am, I watched that video multiple times, smiling, and eventually catching on to the words and singing along (just like I do in every Glee episode).

Here is the video so you can share my delight:

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As much as I enjoyed this commercial, I made some notable marketing observations:

1) The heavily used affective component in this advertisement is almost ridiculous!  The Glee crew sings and repeats over and over, “Drive your Chevrolet in the USA, America’s the greatest land of all”, which must be the most obvious promotion of national pride I have seen in a while.  This commercial is also hilarious to Glee fans, as the short dialogue is closely related to plot of previous episodes.  Laughter=memories.

2) This commercial reminds me of the “Got Milk?” ads that are commonly featured in magazines like the one below.  These ads, as well as this Chevrolet ad, use celebrities to endorse their product, expanding to a different target segment.  As Glee’s popularity is continuously growing, this was a smart move by Chevrolet to appeal to the thousands of fans that were only watching the Superbowl because the new episode of Glee that was premiering immediately after.

As Sarah Manifold (another COMM 296 student) recently said, “The Super Bowl is a prime time event for advertising”, and I think Chevy really captured the perfect timing to capitalize on Glee’s trendy and marketable nature.

post Category: Fashion post Comments (0) postFebruary 3, 2011

Breaking News… I made my first ebay purchase this week!!!  Just a few months ago I got my first credit card, but have been very cautious when it comes to online purchases.  But this was too important to neglect and I just HAD to have it.  The purchase? Katy Perry’s OPI nail polish in Black Shatter. It is unlike anything I have ever seen before and I foresee it changing the nail polish industry.  Here’s what I mean…

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When I first heard about this nail polish, I was extremely confused, but also very intrigued.  After applying your first coat of any shade of polish, you paint on a layer of the crackle polish and each nail will result in it’s own distinct pattern.  The effect that it creates gives the impression that you spent hours and money at a professional salon, which essentially minimizes the psychological risks involved.

So after watching some how-to videos, I realized that I NEEDED this polish.  From my external searches from friends and google, I discovered that obtaining a bottle would be a lot trickier than I had anticipated, as this product was new and in demand.  Ebay was my next best solution, and lo and behold, I found a bottle that was a relatively good price, brand new and the exact shade I was looking for.  I was hesitant to buy something online, so after weighing the compensatory rules like financial and performance risks against the rarity and fantastic quality, I placed and won the bid.  Although I have not received my purchase in the mail yet, I am absolutely positive that this shopping good will not give me any postpurchase dissonance, and I am looking forward to trying this innovative product out!

But the real question is….Which colors shall I try out first?!

My blog was quoted in a CBC news article!

Chhhhheck it out!

post Category: Celebrities,Music post Comments (0) postJanuary 26, 2011

This may cause some repercussions, but I have a confession… I love Justin Bieber! And have since his first Youtube video way back in 2007.  And WOW, has he skyrocketed into the spotlight in these past 4 years.  Clearly his management and PR teams are doing something right.

After recently reading a very interesting blog, Influential Marketing Blog by Rohit Bhargava, I discovered another internet sensation, Ana Free.  Bhargava acknowledges that her Youtube success of over 20 million views can be directly credited to “marketing” and “engagement”, and his entry lists the top 5 ways that she has become a megahit.  I noticed that not only has the Biebs dominated in ALL these fields, but has completely blown Free’s accomplishments out of the water.

Bhargava’s top 5 “lessons”:

1. Share your beginnings. Check.

Justin’s very first upload is of himself winning a local singing contest.  Following that are countless videos of Justin in his smalltown Canadian home, at a very young age, just rocking out.

2. Be authentic. Check.

Justin frequently posts behind-the-scenes footage and videos of himself just goofing around.

3. Use a common language. Check.

All of his earliest videos are of hit songs that everyone can sing along to.

4. Find complimentary partners. Check.

One word.  USHER.

5.  Ask for help from your community.  Check.

As of right now, Justin has been nominated for International Breakthrough Act for the 2011 Brit Awards.  His most recent upload is of himself asking for the support of his fans, hoping for their votes.  Needless to say, I have already done so.

So, in essence, Miss Free should be taking tips from the Biebs, the ultimate Youtube success story.  Personally, I think that if Bhargava wanted to really demonstrate how to find immediate marketability, he should have exemplified the young millionaire, Justin Bieber.

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