Twitch’s Power Merchandising With Teespring

Twitch has become a popular source for broadcasting superstars to show off their stuff to millions of viewing fans – but now the channel wants to step its game up a notch by allowing them to sell their own merchandise.

The company has announced that it has partnered with Teespring to create a new custom integration that will enable its broadcasting partners to create one-of-a-kind shirts through Teespring, which in turn will be sold in Twitch’s official store.

The partnership will be beneficial for Twitch broadcasters, as over 8,500 members are already on board, attracting a large and beneficial community of players and fans alike. This program has already paid off for them – literally – through subscription services, via monetization. Some have even managed to turn their hobby into full-time paying jobs as a result, and the introduction of merchandise could take their popularity even further.

“The Twitch community is fervent about supporting the broadcasters they love,” said Brooke Van Dusen, Director of Business Development, Twitch. “By working closely with Teespring, we are able to offer our partners a fun and creative way to connect with their fans and further establish their personal brand, all while providing an additional source of income.”

The program appears to be rather painless, as it’ll be easy for broadcasters to go in and create their own custom designs, which in turn will be shown through Twitch’s store front for customers to buy.

“Our goal at Teespring is to empower people to engage and delight their communities through custom products,” said Jack Altman, Teespring’s Head of Business Development. “By bringing custom merchandise to Twitch, we hope to create new opportunities for broadcasters to connect with their fans in meaningful ways.”

Several hundred designs are already in production, and a few offerings are already in place over on the Twitch store, with more likely to be added over the next few weeks.

Here’s Apple’s Attempt to Attract Core Gaming Audiences

A new Apple ad featuring two of America’s biggest entertainers dropping stereotypically geeky “gamer” lingo is the electronics giant’s first major attempt at attracting gamers to their mobile devices.

The thirty-second commercial, designed to tout the new iPhone’s processing capabilities for mobile gaming, finds Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon remarking that the iPhone’s A8 chip “brings gaming to the next level — I mean, if you’re into that kind of thing.” Friend and collaborator Justin Timberlake joins in on the fun, launching into a hard-fought session of new Super Evil Megacorp multiplayer offering Vainglory that sees Fallon demanding the Suit & Tie singer “stop playing like a noob”.

For Super Evil Megacorp’s part, they’ve made no bones about their desire to keep the mobile gaming revolution going; Vainglory, a self-described “unapologetically core” title, has its sights set on “core” gamers committed to console and PC offerings.

It would be easy to dismiss this an ill-advised attempt by a business to connect with younger audiences, were it not for Apple’s long and storied history of tongue-in-cheek and subversive advertising. This is, after all, the company that brought you 1984, Think Different, the Burn Baby Burn campaign, and Ellen Feiss’ Switch ad, just to name a few examples.

Regardless, it seems as if many have taken the ad to heart and reacted accordingly, as the spot has been upvoted by 95 percent of Redditors on sub-Reddit /r/fellowkids, a message board for poking fun at corporate attempts to connect with younger consumers. One Redditor, in his own words, “cringed [him]self into a black hole that destroyed the Earth.” The reaction on YouTube is markedly better, however.

Apple stands at a serious crossroads in the mobile market, as their long-held supremacy for tablets and smartphones is facing its greatest challenge to date from Android-aligned manufacturers led by Google. If Vainglory can replicate even a portion of chief inspiration League of Legendsrecord-busting revenues, Apple will have plenty to be thankful for this holiday season.


CREATIVE: McDonald’s Creates The World’s First French Fry Security System

McDonald’s Canada is looking to inspire laughs with a new app that defends the franchise’s much-beloved fried potato product. The Fry Defender is, yes, a real app which you can download here.

The YouTube video campaign feels like nothing we’ve seen from McDonald’s before, looking to target millennials in a way that feels curiously similar to something that Burger King or Jack in the Box would employ. McDonald’s brings the digital campaign to life with an interactive website and Tumblr, corralling the campaign with the hashtag #stopfrytheft.

This Week’s [a]list Jobs – November 26th

[a]listdaily is your source for the hottest job openings for senior management and marketing in games, entertainment and social media. Check here every Wednesday for the latest openings.

How can you arrange your workspace in simple ways to help you be more productive and inspired Here are 7 steps.

Here are this week’s [a]list jobs:

  • 2K – Director of Social Marketing (Novato, Calif.)
  • Google – Product Marketing Manager, Google Play Afflilate Program (Mountain View, Calif.)
  • Hasbro – US Marketing Manager (Providence, RI)
  • DreamWorks Animation – Director, Digital Marketing (Glendale, Calif.)
  • Nexon – Manager, Community (El Segundo, Calif.)
  • Ayzenberg – Creative Director (Pasadena, Calif.)

For last week’s [a]list jobs, click here. Have a position you’d like to place with us Email us at

Sony Set To Improve PlayStation Plus

The PlayStation Plus service has been a huge boon for both Sony and consumers since its introduction a few years ago, offering a number of exclusive game releases for download, as well as special deals on other titles that practically make them a steal.

So it should be no surprise then that the user base for the Plus service has quadrupled in size since its introduction, according to DualShockers. A total audience number hasn’t been provided, but considering that over ten million PlayStation 4 units have been sold, it’s no doubt playing a huge part. (PlayStation Plus is required to access online multiplayer with more popular titles, although some believe that isn’t as limited in service as Xbox Live’s Gold program.)

With that, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment of America Andrew House has explained that there will be a number of improvements to the PlayStation Plus service moving forward, as the company vows to add a number of benefits and features that give consumers the most bang for their buck.

The three areas where Sony plans to improve the service are as follows:

-Strengthening the online multiplayer line-up to drive adoption of the subscription and membership service

-Strengthening the free content delivered to subscribers every month, increasing the value of their subscription package

-Enhancing the community-based features of PlayStation Plus, to make it appealing not just to core gamers, but also to a broader audience

Sony is also looking to provide more alpha and beta access to select titles, just as it did with Evolve and The Crew earlier this month, and also looks to improve the server infrastructure on its PlayStation Network service, although specifics were, again, not mentioned.

PlayStation Plus subscriptions are available for purchase both online and through activation cards that are sold at retailers, so it’s likely to be a big holiday seller alongside PlayStation 4’s this holiday season – especially considering that the console is more readily available than it was last year.

iPad Sees First Ever Decline In Growth

When it comes to tablet sales, many have usually considered Apple’s iPad models to be the cream of the crop, mainly due to their convenience and accessibility. However, with an ever-changing market that introduces a number of competitors, it was only a matter of time before someone came along to shake things up.

A report from IDC indicates that, for the first time since its introduction, full-year iPad shipments have dropped in numbers. This is even with all the iPad models that have been introduced to the market, including the new iPad Air 2 that came out earlier this year.

iPads shipped show a total number of 64.9 million, which is a drop of 12.7 percent on the total number of shipments from last year, according to TechCrunch. That’s still a decent portion in the overall 235.7 million units that shipped in this year’s tablet market – a growth of 7.2 percent over last year.

Nevertheless, this is still bad news for Apple, as the growth between 2012 and 2013 in Apple shipments were much greater, to the tune of a 52.5 percent increase. Meanwhile, Android-based tablets are beginning to dominate the market, with a 68 percent hold overall, totaling almost 160 million devices shipped for the year.

Regardless, Apple continues to be the single-biggest brand in the tablet market with a 27.5 percent share overall, although that comes down to 22.1 percent considering the Q3 performance of iPads on the market. This could open up a big opportunity for Android to take over in 2015, if the right models come out.

“The tablet market continues to be impacted by a few major trends happening in relevant markets,” Ryan Reith, Program Director with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Device Trackers, writes. “In the early stages of the tablet market, device lifecycles were expected to resemble those of smartphones, with replacement occurring every 2-3 years. What has played out instead is that many tablet owners are holding onto their devices for more than 3 years and in some instances more than 4 years. We believe the two major drivers for longer than expected tablet lifecycles are legacy software support for older products, especially within iOS, and the increased use of smartphones for a variety of computing tasks.”

The report also noted other factors in terms of the market, including replacement cycles having an effect on sales. “Significant advancements have been made recently by hardware manufacturers to advance the 2-in-1, or detachable, product category,” IDC notes, along with thinner and less expensive devices. “Despite these advances, shipments of 2-in-1 devices are only expected to reach 8.7 million units in 2014, which is just 4% of the total tablet plus 2-in-1 market,” it notes.

Consumers can also be hesitant when buying a tablet, according to the report, as newer models are released all the time – particularly with Apple’s cycle.

What does this mean for marketers While Apple will continue to have a hefty hold on the tablet market, some may consider shopping around on Android services, especially considering that it’s slowly but surely taking a strong hold of its own. 2015 will definitely tell a big story when it comes to these devices. Still, Apple holds a dominant position in revenue for tablet apps, especially with games. Will Apple find ways to sell more tablets in 2015, or will Android tablets garner even greater market share

BGR Rounds Up Black Friday Deals

It’s three days until the biggest sales event of the year (well, two for certain retailers), and many shoppers are already getting prepared to deal with the onslaught of midnight madness and other sales to get the best deals. BGR has taken the liberty of making shopping a little more convenient for folks by setting up a Black Friday 2014 cheat sheet, which keeps all the ads and deals in one convenient place.

Through the cheat sheet, all the major retailers are listed, including Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop and others. Although individual deals aren’t listed (that would take an immense amount of space), the cheat sheet does include links to all of the retailers’ Black Friday pages, as well as other notable items when it comes to shopping. For example, with Amazon, Prime subscribers have additional access to special days, up to 30 minutes prior to other consumers.

On BGR’s main page, there are also separate listings for special deals being offered by retailers, including Amazon and Best Buy. These are more detailed than the cheat sheet, and provide a better idea of what retailers may have – in case the sites may be overrun with traffic or all the deals can’t quite be seen.

In addition to store chains, a variety of online retailers’ deals have been included as well. Newegg, for example, will offer deals starting from November 27th at 12:01 AM PDT through the weekend. In addition, Microsoft has also launched a week of special sales for both Xbox One and Xbox 360 games. The full list can be found here, although it should be noted that consumers need an Xbox Live Gold membership to take advantage of most of these deals.

This year’s shopping event is looking to be just as crazy as previous years. In fact, some people have already begun camping out for these special deals, in the hopes of getting the jump on the midnight and Thanksgiving crowds that usually gather. It’s sure to bring in big sales numbers for retailers, but also a little bit of chaos, as some people will apparently get out of control to get the best bargain on a television or another item.

Your best bet Be part of an exclusive shopping program. As stated, Amazon Prime members will have early access to deals, and members of Best Buy’s My BestBuy program can already get select deals that will be handed out to the public this Friday.

‘Jurassic World’ Trailer Welcomes Visitors

Jurassic World, the long-awaited fourth chapter in the Jurassic Park franchise, debuted its first trailer today, after a brief teaser on Monday promised that it would arrive on Thanksgiving. Universal provided the trailer as a treat for fans of the series, who have been long awaiting the first sequel in the series since Jurassic Park III released in 2001.

Fans shouldn’t expect any older faces from the series, but should get plenty of mileage from the new actors that appear in it, including Guardians of the Galaxy‘s Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard. The trailer below shows them (briefly) in action, amidst a park that has since opened up to a much larger crowd.

Jurassic World shows a much more evolved (and controlled) theme park surrounding dinosaurs, with crowds gathering to check out a number of the beasts up close, including an interesting sea show with a giant mosasaur feeding on a shark. However, that doesn’t stop Howard’s scientist from thinking how much more the park would benefit from a newly developed dinosaur, created by DNA.

Pratt, who will play an expert for the park, doesn’t think that’s such a hot idea, considering the results that could come from an experiment. They do it anyway, and, as you might expect, what follows is danger and excitement galore, as the team tries to stop the newly developed (and incredibly smart) creature from running havoc in the park.

This new chapter in the series, executive produced by Jurassic Park director Steven Spielberg and co-written and directed by Colin Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed) will arrive on June 12th, right in the thick of the summer season. Considering the original Jurassic made $1 billion worldwide in ticket sales) and the star power of Pratt, it should have no problem making money.

However, there is some slight concern over the strength of the franchise. The follow-up to Jurassic Park, The Lost World, only made $618 million worldwide, while Jurassic Park III slid even further with $368 million worldwide.

Nevertheless, Universal has faith in its franchise, and judging by the positive buzz of the trailer, visitors will have no problem flocking back to this Park – even with the trouble that awaits inside.


Ruffles Dips Into Digital

Ruffles, a popular PepsiCo brand of potato chip famous for its ridges, is on the cutting edge of the marketing world today after shifting nearly one hundred percent of its advertising over to digital platforms.

The stunning move, which makes Ruffles one of a select few snack-food brands in America with an all-digital advertising strategy following a nearly-sixty six percent television strategy just a year earlier, was explained by Frito-Lay senior director of marketing Dana Lawrence as an experiment in making one of their brands completely digital. “We’re really trying to reach our target, 25-year old millennial males, in a more relevant way,” Lawrence remarked, noting Ruffles’ target demographic’s embrace of mobile video.

Despite the move away from television, the folks at Ruffles actually produce more video than ever before; their #RoughLife campaign saw three video series created just this year, including collaborations with online humor network CollegeHumor. The videos are released through an aggressive distribution system that sees Ruffles spots appearing on YouTube, Twitter, Tumblr, and Facebook.

The move was initially seen as a gamble, as Ruffles’ full-throated embrace of digital moved them into unfamiliar territory.

“Absolutely we were nervous,” Lawrence said. “Any time you make a significant change, you’re always a little nervous about the impact.”

The decision appears to be paying dividends so far, however, as Ruffles sales in terms of dollars spent were 8.19 percent higher in the past fifty-two weeks over last.

Though Kraft’s Nilla Wafers courted big-time success last year after moving their entire ad budget to social, other brands have been hesitant to make the switch, refusing to do so for reasons ranging from sheer traditionalism to immense levels of scrutiny placed on digital advertising campaigns. Still, with Nilla and Ruffles’ successes in hand and increasingly prohibitive television advertising costs driving more traditional brands to reconsider their options, it would appear that mass adoption of digital-first advertising strategies is an inevitability.


3 Reasons Why YouTube Gadgets Don’t Work For Brands

By Jessica Klein

For the most part, brands can find success on YouTube in the same way as regular creators — by making compelling content and wisely populating their channels with playlists and strategic annotations. Custom “YouTube gadgets” may seem like one of those smart channel additions, but, according to a recent white paper from Tubular Labs, “Are YouTube Gadgets Worth the Investment for Brands,” they seem to hurt rather than help.

In case you didn’t know, gadgets often substitute the usual YouTube landing page for brands that use them, making the overall layout look unique and highly brand-specific. Perhaps viewers get deterred by the unusual image Whether that’s the cause or not, these statistics, gathered from the 23 most-subscribed brand channels with gadgets and the 23 without, should help brands figure out why gadgets are doing them wrong.

Read more…

This article was originally posted on VideoInk and is reposted on [a]listdaily via a partnership with the news publication, which is the online video industry’s go-to source for breaking news, features, and industry analysis. Follow VideoInk on Twitter @VideoInkNews, or subscribe via for the latest news and stories, delivered right to your inbox.