Posted by Dale Buss on November 5, 2013 05:41 PM
In the world of humanized corporate mascots, Flo has been blowing away a lot of competition over the last five years. She has her own Wikipedia page; ,ore than 14 million hits on "Flo from Progressive"; and more than 5 million Facebook fans now versus just a half-million three years ago.
But, as Marketing Daily pointed out, Progressive must strive to keep Flo fresh in its ongoing TV-ad campaign and battle what CMO Jeff Charney called "Flo fatigue." It's crucial in an industry as competitive as car insurance—with GEICO, Allstate, Farmer's and other top brands also scrapping for every customer—that Progressive stays ahead of any such syndrome.
"We started with her as the hero" in TV ads featuring the Progressive Insurance "superstore," where perky, friendly Flo—played by actress Stephanie Courtney—helps consumers select the right coverage, Charney told the publication. "Then [we] added an ensemble, foils (in the form of rival insurance-company employees), then we changed scenes to keep it fresh."Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on October 15, 2013 11:52 AM
When the reaches of humanity's ability to create art looks for a metaphoric warning to address the disastrous arrogance of science, it creates Godzilla, a lasting icon of the world's nuclear past. When the reaches of humanity's ability to create public relations campaigns looks for a mascot to address the disastrous arrogance of science, it creates Fukuppy, a lasting icon of the world's nuclear present.
Welcome to Earth, Fukuppy; you will go down as one of the top three worst mascots of all time.
To get the giggles and eye rolls out of the way up front, "Fukuppy" is the new mascot for Fukushima Industries, a manufacturer of refrigerators. The damaged Fukushima nuclear reactor, which just saw radiation levels hit a two-year high, is located in Fukushima prefecture.
In the wake of the (ongoing) Kumamon craze, brandchannel recently explored "Japan's robust history of anthropomorphized mascots" and how it fits into the island nation's "kawaii culture" ("kawaii" means "cute" or "adorable"). This cultural, maybe compulsive need to give every single thing its own adorable anthropomorphized mascot probably goes a long way in explaining the thinking behind Fukushima Industries' cute new spokes-egg.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 24, 2013 05:39 PM
When fans think of sports team mascots, most envision furry, feathery or friendly figures hell-bent on making game-goers smile, laugh, or stare in amazement at their silly stunts. From Kansas City Chiefs’ K.C. Wolf to Atlanta’s Freddie Falcon, mascots are supposed to be lovable, huggable figures... right?
But the latest plush fan to enter the fray might actually scare fans—and that's saying something when it comes to the black-and-silver clad Oakland Raider fanatics.
The NFL team known for its costume wearing fans and gang-related jerseys is debuting a new mascot, Raider Rusher, meant to draw in a more youthful fanbase, but the big-headed, cartoonish figure might send mini Raider fans running. The new mascot may look familiar though, as it stems from a Nickelodeon TV show, NFL Rush Zone, that is co-produced by the NFL and the TV network to gain the attention of young fans.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 29, 2013 07:12 PM
In World War I, the Germans nicknamed the US Marines as Devil Dogs, a term the Americans adopted with glee. On Wednesday, one of those dogs stepped down from its lofty place in the Corp., making way for a spunky new recruit.
Sgt. Chesty XIII, the English bulldog mascot of the Marines for the last five years, has stepped down from his post and been replaced by Chesty XIV. The mascots get their name from Lt. Gen. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller Jr., who served in both World War II and the Korean War and is one of the most decorated Marines, according to the Washington Times.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on July 8, 2013 02:57 PM
While the US struggles with multiple cartoon mascot controversies, Japan's Kumamon is taking the rest of the world by storm.
The mascot of the high speed train of Kumamoto City ("kumamon" means "bear thing" in Japanese) was launched in 2010 and is now a fixture of Japanese culture as well as an increasing number of branding and marketing campaigns. It's only the most popular anthropomorphized mascot in Japan's robust history of anthropomorphized mascots. But don't confuse Kumamon for Pedobear, another of Japan's popular kuma exports.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 25, 2013 02:36 PM
In what seems like a desperate bid for brand extension, the GEICO gecko has published a book. Yes, the fictitious, talking lizard not only convinces people to buy insurance, but his accented charm apparently works on publishers, too.
The GEICO Gecko has "penned" a book titled You're Only Human: A Guide to Life, a 164-page, breezy, robustly illustrated, reader-friendly tome that covers topics of interest to the renowned, slimy little insurance mascot, ranging from "friending" hawks to Twitter, from tattoos to flossing.
Why you may ask? Well, the Gecko has always been one of the most reflective mascots in TV and print advertising. It's clear that there's a lot more going on in that tiny, tiny brain than mere shilling for his commercial sponsor.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 10, 2012 06:19 PM
U.S. auto sales had their best month in three years in August, but you don’t necessarily have to put out any cold, hard cash if you want some new wheels. It might help, though, if you can dance and know how to operate a video camera.
Korea’s Kia Motors is offering up a brand spanking new $14,400 2013 Kia Soul for whoever can come up with a 90-second music video that judges and consumers fall for — and raises the question of whether Kia has accepted the mantle of "hamster brand" after its CMO told Ad Age he wanted to avoid that nickname.
The contest ties in with its latest Hamsterrific ad campaign, the "Bringing Down the House" commercial that debuted during the MTV Video Music Awards telecast last week, that features those shuffling hamsters again — only this time around they go back in time to win over a snooty crowd of pompadoured, poufy opera fans.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on July 4, 2012 10:54 AM
Chuck E. Cheese, the namesake mascot (mousecot?) of the pizza restaurant/kids arcade chain that was founded by the founder of Atari, is getting a makeover.
Following a teaser campaign on Facebook, the cartoon-like kid-appealing critter is getting hipper and adding some rock star 'tude (which keeping the purple and green t-shirt) via a national ad campaign in the U.S. that will break on July 5th. The new voice of Chuck also brings rock star cred to the character: Jaret Reddick, the lead singer of Bowling for Soup.
According to comments by CEC Entertainment CMO Scott McDaniel to Screen, the goal of the mascot refresh is to
"contemporize Chuck E. Cheese in a very respectful and engaging fashion. Chuck E. is the hero at the heart of our restaurants. For the first time in years, we’re changing the way we communicate with our key patrons – kids.” The “Chuck E. Rocks” campaign comprises television, digital and in-store components. Four TV spots, “Belonging,” “Fun,” “Power” and “Birthdays,” each named for something a child experiences at Chuck E. Cheese’s, showcase kids doing what they do best at Chuck E. Cheese’s – having fun."Continue reading...