2014 Brandcameo Product Placement Awards

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Mila Kunis Makes History with Jim Beam in New Global Campaign

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 20, 2014 12:07 PM

It's not often you see a woman shilling for a hard liquor brand, but that's because they aren't Mila Kunis.

The red-hot Hollywood actress, who has starred in films like Black Swan and Forgetting Sarah Marshall and voices the character of Meg Griffin on Family Guy, is the new front-woman for Jim Beam in what is the company's largest global marketing campaign in its 219-year history. 

It's also a landmark deal for Kunis, who had never pitched for any other brand in the US. But it turns out that putting up a friendly, female face to promote your brand isn't such a bad idea now that 30 percent of bourbon drinkers are female, up 10 percent from years past. Flavored bourbon, which continues to grow, is consumed evenly across women and men, Ad Age notes.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Bacardi Goes Green, Crackdown on Gluten-Free Booze Claims and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 14, 2014 06:34 PM

Bacardi Gets Green

Bacardi Limited may be 152 years old, but it is thinking like a youngster. The world’s largest privately held spirits company has set its sights on obtaining “40 percent of the sugarcane-derived products used to make its rums from certified, sustainable sources by 2017 and 100 percent by 2022—an industry first—as part of a new global sustainability campaign,” according to Sustainable Brands.

“Protecting the natural resources we use to create our brands, at every step along the value chain, is central to our corporate responsibility,” said Ed Shirley, Bacardi's president and CEO, according to the site. “We’ve always set the bar high. Now, we’re taking our solid, sustainable foundation to the next level.”

The sustainability campaign doesn't just extend to its supply chain, but also to its corporate offices. As part of the new campaign being launched across 75 offices, Bacardi employees will be able to track just how environmentally-friendly they are being both at home and in the office.Continue reading...

brand and bottle

$16 Billion Beam Inc. Acquisition Will See Greater Distribution of Whiskey Brands

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 13, 2014 05:22 PM

Liquor giants Diageo and Pernod Ricard can start looking over their shoulders. Japan’s Suntory Holdings, which produces some of Japan’s oldest whiskeys, has just agreed to pay $16 billion for Beam Inc., the American producer of Maker’s Mark, Jim Beam, Sauza, and Gilbey’s, Ad Age reports. The deal makes Suntory the third-largest liquor company in the world. 

As a result of the deal, Suntory, which also bottles Pepsi in Japan and owns the Orangina brand, will have greater distribution in the US and Beam, whose portfolio includes the lucrative Skinnygirl line, will have much stronger exposure in the Asian marketplace. That’s a pretty good deal for Suntory, which currently sources 90 percent of its business from Japan. 

“Suntory has virtually no U.S. presence,” Mark Swartzberg, an analyst at Stifel Financial Corp., said in a research note today, according to Bloomberg. “This will take their share from less than 1 percent to 11 percent. Meanwhile, Beam stockholders will head to the bank with $83.50 for each share owned instead of the $66.97 share price that it last closed at." The two companies previously had a distribution deal in which Suntory distributed Beam products in Japan, and Beam distributed Suntory products in Singapore and greater Asia.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Maple Madness, Belvedere Know-How, Wine Shortage and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 1, 2013 07:05 PM

Beam Goes Sweet for Maple

Beam scored a hit earlier this year with its honey-flavored bourbon, so the company is turning out a few more—Jim Beam Maple and Knob Creek Smoked Maple—to help boost its hurting bottom line.

Rob Nelson, the brand manager of small-batch bourbon at Beam, told BeverageDaily.com that the growing popularity of such spirits can be partially attributed to the popularity of Prohibition-era TV shows such as HBO's Boardwalk Empire. The sweeter taste also seems to be attracting the sweeter sex. 

“We think females are now participating in flavored bourbon at twice the rate they are in the unflavored bourbon,” Beam Chief Executive Matthew Shattock said in a conference call, according to Bloomberg Businessweek. As the magazine points out, though, that success may be at the expense of its Skinnygirl wine, which is “down by almost one-third this year.”Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Kodak, Petco, Toyota and more

Posted by Dale Buss on September 4, 2013 09:14 AM

In the News

Kodak officially ends bankruptcy.

Petco launches transformation effort.

Toyota announces hybrids recall.

Amazon unveils new Kindle, Matchbook service. 

Bank of America exits China bank stake.

Bison Council pushes acceptance of the meat.

Chick-fil-A offers free breakfast, with reservation.

Chrysler posts 12 percent sales gain in August as all brands ready for US sales reports today.

Google partners with Nestle to name new operating system.

Hershey boosts ad spending and sales have followed.

Johnson & Johnson adds red warning label on Tylenol over dosage concerns.

JCPenney finds love from other hedge funds.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All The News You Can Drink: Tommy Guns Vodka, Corona's Herd, Dos de Mayo and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 5, 2013 06:30 PM

Gun Company Fires Back at Tommy Guns Vodka

Chicago mobsters back in the days of Al Capone favored a submachine gun known as the Tommy gun, which was then glorified in plenty of films and books about the era. But Tommy guns aren’t some relic of history. Saeilo Enterprises still makes them, and the owners aren’t very happy with Alphonse Capone Enterprises and its Tommy Guns Vodka, which is sold in a bottle shaped like the famous gun.

In fact, they are so annoyed that a lawsuit has been filed, the Chicago Tribune reports. Saeilo wants all of the Tommy Guns Vodka that is left to be turned over so it can all be destroyed. (Consumption counts as destroying, right?)Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Best Retail Brands, Coca-Cola, Starbucks and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on March 19, 2013 09:07 AM

In the News

Interbrand announces the 2013 Best Retail Brands report.

Coca-Cola honored with first Clio brand icon award.

Starbucks names new global CMO in former Sephora marketer Sharon Rothstein, as McDonald's passes Starbucks as most social brand.

Apple rumored to pull out the stops for the next iPhone to take on Samsung, which has replaced Nokia as top smartphone brand in China and confirmed it's developing a smartwatch to take on Apple's rumored wearable computer.

BlackBerry prepares to bring million-selling Z10 smartphone to U.S. on Friday with 100,000 apps.

Burger King hopes folks gobble up new turkey burger.

Carl's Jr. and Hardee's introduce Jim Beam bourbon burger.

Clorox introduces smart tube technology to packaging design.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Heineken Star Rises, Brangelina Wine a Sell-Out and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 8, 2013 05:07 PM

Heineken’s Star Bottle Arrives Stateside with New Campaign

Heineken’s new taller, sleeker and starred bottle is already available in 170 countries and is now being rolled out in the United States with a new “Arrive Big” ad campaign featuring the brand’s “Man of the World” in such exotic locations as Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Lagos, Nigeria and New York City. In each location, the protagonist finds himself in prickly situations at various clubs, yet somehow ends up with the girl and the beer (and an #arrivebig hashtag, to boot) in the end.

“Our priority is to ‘break the mold’ in beer marketing with cinematic, sophisticated ads that feature our ‘Man of the World,’ a progressive, cultured guy, who is inventive in any situation,” said Colin Westcott-Pitt, vice president of Heineken, in a press release. Heineken doesn’t go so far as to pull a New Coke move and break the mold inside the bottle, of course.Continue reading...

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