Campari’s ‘The Legend Of Red Hand’ Continues Its Branded Short Film Series

With “The Legend of Red Hand,” Italian aperitif brand Campari continues a tradition of short-film activations starring high-profile stars.

“Red Hand,” directed by Stefano Sollima (Gomorrah), tells the story of a photographer Mia Perc—played by Zoe Saldana (Guardians of the Galaxy)—who is determined to reveal the true identity of renowned bartender known only as Red Hand, so named for the red gloves he wears while preparing Campari cocktails.

Saldana’s character believes she has finally captured his image before escaping with the help of bar employee Davide (Adriano Giannini). Inspired by new revelations, she follows clues across Milan, New York, Buenos Aires, Rio De Janeiro, Berlin and London.

The release is the second in a series called “Red Diaries,” based on the idea that “every cocktail tells a story.” Last year, the company released its first short called “Killer in Red” about a bartender, played by Clive Owen, who can create cocktails predicting the future.

Both films prominently feature the color red to symbolize Campari’s trademark hue and celebrates the talent of bartenders. “The Legend of Red Hand” features six real-life bartenders from around the world who have created their own Campari cocktails—with recipes posted on Campari’s website.

Campari unveiled the film at a red carpet premiere Tuesday in its home city of Milan, with the director and cast on hand to answer audience questions. The video has been posted on Campari’s official YouTube page and garnered 50,000 views within its first 12 hours. The campaign has also gained traction on social channels, thanks to Saldana’s personal posts.

Prior to the Red Diaries campaign, Campari enlisted the help of celebrities Penelope Cruz, Uma Thurman and Kate Hudson to create themed calendars for years 2013-2016. The brand says the short film series is “an evolution” of that calendar campaign.

Spirits and film marketing have proven to be fruitful partners for decades—think Stoli in Atomic Blonde and Johnnie Walker in Blade Runner 2049although Campari stands apart by creating its own content.

Other brands are inviting guests to write and direct original short films on their behalf. It has become a tradition for fashion house Kenzo to partner with entertainment industry professionals to craft independent films. Kenzo’s Fall/Winter collection was ushered in during New York Fashion week with a film called “Cabiria, Charity, Chastity” starring Maya Rudolph (Brides Maids) and written/directed by Natasha Lyonne (Orange Is the New Black).

12 Marketing Buzzwords That Need To Die This Year

While marketing buzzwords keep us excited about our favorite topic, we need to face up to terms that have over-stayed their welcome. We compiled this list of out-of-date offenders based on terms we’ve seen used repeatedly over the years and, in our opinion, far too often. While we certainly condone the techniques or marketing mindsets these buzzwords represent, it’s time to adapt to more accurate terminology. Which buzzwords would you add to this list?


This term refers to entertainment that also represents a brand message. These ads masquerade as movies, online shows and podcasts, but we can all see the logo. It’s great to entertain audiences with a brand message—we recommend it—but maybe it’s time to stop calling it “advertainment” like nobody’s the wiser.

Content Marketing

These days, it’s not uncommon to receive party planning advice from a greeting card company or a comedy show from a breakfast cereal. An informative article or video can be helpful for gaining an audience and establishing your brand as an expert, but at this point, “content marketing” is starting to lose its meaning.

Anything “-centric”

Mobile-centric, data-centric . . . focusing on a particular market or marketing platform can be the key to a successful campaign. Creating an emphasis is always a good idea, but the suffix “-centric” has got to go.


You shouldn’t need to call it real. While this is perhaps the most important element of any marketing campaign, this buzzword has been used so much, it causes even the most hardened marketers to cringe. Audiences can tell when brands are insincere, so authentic messages should come standard.

Big Data

When this term was first coined, it referred to massive amounts of information that were simply too much to handle without computer assistance. But these days, all data is big. It’s a good year to retire this one.


This one has been on “buzzwords to kill” lists for a long time and we’re surprised to still see it. Being an expert in your field is a great thing, but calling yourself or your brand a guru can come across as pretentious. Unless consumers are hiring Sherpas to guide them to your brand’s headquarters atop a mysterious mountain on a quest for sage wisdom, we can all do without this overused buzzword.

Thought Leader

This is meant to imply influence, but calling your brand a “thought leader” implies that you’re either the first one to think of everything you do or you have the ability to control thoughts. You don’t have to be the first, but you can strive to be the best.

Millennials (And Their Brand Casualties)

Every generation is compelled to shake off the traditions of their parents while being influenced by the changing world around them. That being the case, it should no longer be news that millennials, aka generation Y likes to do things differently, much less that they use the technology available to them. Businesses who adapt to each new generation continue to thrive and those who don’t, well . . . don’t. It’s time to stop blaming this generation for every business closure.

VR That Is Not Actually VR

Virtual reality is the total immersion of a user inside a rendered environment, allowing them to navigate and interact with objects within that world. As this lucrative technology graduates from infancy to experimental toddler, audiences have a better understanding of what constitutes VR versus other mediums. It’s more than okay to create 360-video or watch a screen through VR headsets, but it should no longer be acceptable to call something VR when it’s not.

Snackable Content

Short-form video or brief social media posts can often make a strong impact, and it’s a good idea not to bombard audiences with too much content at once. Calling a marketing strategy “snackable,” however, makes the message sound small and insignificant . . .  or made of potato chips.

Viral Marketing

Everyone wants their clever video ad to be shared millions of times, but here’s the problem—there is no such thing as viral marketing. Marketing clients ask for it by name, but calling your marketing campaign “viral” is like giving yourself your own nickname. Clients don’t know better, but marketers do. Preemptively calling a campaign viral is, at best, patting yourself on the back too early and at worst, making decisions for your audience. Crafting a marketing campaign that gets audiences talking is great —just hold off on calling it viral until you’re blown away by the results.

Super Bowl Provides Marketers A Field To Run Mobile Game Strategy

Instead of relying on high-priced, in-game TV ads, more marketers are turning to the second screen this year to tap into digital-native audiences with hopes of piquing new fan interest. Brands like Mercedes-Benz, Rovio Entertainment, Ally Financial and Pizza Hut are giving TV a stiff arm for the Super Bowl, looking to level up sophistication of digital engagement by implementing mobile game marketing campaigns.

With over 106 million viewers annually since 2010, the Super Bowl still remains the most-watched TV event each year and one of the last mass-media vehicles for marketers to introduce a new product, or lift a long-standing marque.

Mobile devices, however, should not be ignored. Forty-seven percent of fans who tune in will use the second screen while watching the game, and 68 percent will use a device to view social media, according to an Adtaxi report.

As brands turn to mobile games more often to engage consumers, marketers are now viewing the Super Bowl as a media-buy Lombardi Trophy that demonstrates a large-scale user acquisition undertaking.

A Game That Sets Up Next Year’s Super Bowl Strategy

Mercedes-Benz, a Super Bowl TV advertiser in four previous contests, is trying to play a big game on the small screen this year with “Last Fan Standing,” a mobile competition that tests the patience and stamina of fans during the game. The last person with a finger planted on the vehicle of the virtual Mercedes-AMG C43 Coupe will win the real car, which is valued at over for $55,000.

“We looked at the mobile-gaming landscape and realized that this wasn’t going to be the year to attempt to make a commercial or viral video,” Mark Aikman, general manager of marketing services at Mercedes-Benz US, told AListDaily. “Since we don’t have a TV spot this year, we wanted to have a more contemporary, disruptive and brand-building activation that would be buzzworthy during the game.”

The backdrop of the mobile game takes place at the newly built Mercedes-Benz Stadium, home for the Atlanta Falcons and the site for next year’s Super Bowl. Aikman said the experience, which channels “hands on a hardbody” promotions auto dealers have used in the past, serves as an appetizer for a larger Mercedes Super Bowl marketing strategy in 2019.

“In some ways, this mobile game is a long lead,” said Aikman, adding that it forces a level of consumer engagement and attention that is specifically on the product. “It’s safe to say we’ll have large-scale activations next year.”

Aikman said that since digital and social are still a growing part of the automaker’s marketing mix, they wanted to use the social co-viewing phenomena to deliver a compelling prize. In addition to building brand awareness, winning new consumer consideration and simple information capture for future marketing use, the goal of the game is to get people gathered at parties to ask, “what are you doing on your phone?” and get the conversation started about Mercedes.

Due to the sheer number of car companies that advertise on super Sunday, the entire category experiences a bump in purchase consideration following the game, said Aikman, so shunning TV does not have as much marketing impact as one would think.

Down, Set, Hut!

Brands will have their own game to play this year as well on Sunday, courtesy of Twitter, which is upping the stakes for marketers with “#BrandBowl52,” a competition that will award advertisers that drive the most engagement on the platform around the Super Bowl.

The friendly brand battle further proves that owning the conversation on social and digital channels is just as critical as shelling $5 million for a 30-second TV spot on the NBC-televised game. The network is expecting to cash-in on close to $500 million in Super Bowl-related ad spend this year.

Another brand looking to capture consumers on gameday through a mobile game is Pizza Hut, which is operating on a multi-pronged Super Bowl strategy highlighted by Squares, an experience through Yahoo! aimed at driving new sign-ups to its loyalty program.

Zipporah Allen, CMO for Pizza Hut, said a mobile game makes more sense for the brand because time spent on mobile devices during cultural events like the Super Bowl continues to rise.

“Pizza Hut has a legacy of bringing more entertainment to the pizza category, and mobile gaming fits with that,” she said. “Our focus is being where the consumers are. We think it’s an effective way to drive brand preference on mobile, through sharable and engaging content.”

Allen said the brand recognizes that if it creates fun experiences for customers, the business will follow. The piemaker is also partnering with former players for a pregame, livestream ad and an in-game promotion that will potentially award pizza for an entire year to prizewinners.

“We’re always looking to maximize marketing efforts, and the right digital activations can be an effective way to increase reach, and engagement,” she said. “We view the mobile game Squares as a way to add even more enjoyment to gameday while reaching consumers at a point when they are one click away from purchase.”

NFL And Traditional Games Publisher Go For Win-Win Partnership

For Rovio Entertainment, owners of the Angry Birds IP, the Finnish company’s bread and butter is video games, but because of the similarities in highly engaged audiences, live sports also serves as an interesting domain within linear TV.

Looking to expand to a more mature audience profile, the publisher partnered with the NFL to gamify the Super Bowl and used a cultural event of mass scale to reach new audiences in the US, the developer’s primary market. In turn, the NFL will potentially reach younger audiences who play mobile games as it tries to pump some younger blood into its viewership make-up in its current quest to boost slumping ratings.

“Traditional media buying has been quite inaccessible—or at least hard to justify—for mobile game publishers, as the vast majority of market growth has been built on digital performance marketing,” said Ville Heijari, CMO of Rovio Entertainment. “We see experiential marketing integrations like this as a way to build measurable, profitable and of course repeatable activations around major regional and global events.”

Fans who play Angry Birds 2 and Angry Birds Evolution can now launch their flock with the choice of any of the 32 NFL teams in new Super Bowl-themed game levels as well as in-game competitions. Collectibles can be acquired through gameplay activity, or in-app purchases (IAP), so the activation is monetized with IAP and in-game advertising.

“Some of the fastest-growing and the most-engaged audiences at the moment are found in mobile gaming,” said Heijari, adding that mobile games are now leaning toward running efficient live operations around recurring in-game events.

Successfully operating modern, free-to-play mobile games is all about running in-game events, said Heijari, and the ability to provide a fresh set of challenges and engaging content with each event.

Topical in-game events on the small screen allows for Rovio to become a part of the spectacle as it happens.Heijari said engaged audiences have become increasingly fragmented in many pockets of entertainment across different games, platforms and streaming media, which makes a company like Rovio a unique partner for the NFL to create large-scale collaborations in the mobile games segment for contextually relevant events.

A Counter Message Through Augmented Reality

Consumer spending power for the Super Bowl is substantial. Americans are slated to splurge an estimated total of $15.3 billion for the game this year, an 8.5 percent increase from 2017, according to the National Retail Federation.

With plenty of advertising aligned at taking a sack from the consumer pocketbook, Ally Financial is countering all of the cash spend by tapping into its brand ethos and flipping the playbook with “The Ally Big Save,” an augmented reality game that encourages people to “collect” money during commercial breaks through the visualization of a virtual dollar drop.

“Today there are more choices for marketers to reach their target audience than ever before,” said Andrea Brimmer, CMO for online-only bank Ally Financial. “Acceptance and usage of AR is becoming more pervasive, so this seemed like a great time to use the technology in a way that disrupts what you normally see in big-game marketing.”

The mobile game is designed to define the Ally brand’s marketing toward money mindfulness and marks the beginning of a strategy that will take the brand through 2018 and beyond, Brimmer said. It includes large-scale disruptor campaigns, as well as their traditional, digital and contextual social marketing.

Brimmer said that through previous promotions and programs, she’s identified that experience marketing like mobile games work and reach new groups of consumers that don’t necessarily consume media in the traditional ways.

“There are moments where TV is the lead, and there are moments where TV and digital seem like they are right on the same playing field,” said Aikman. “It all comes down to if the message you’re trying to deliver is right for a national audience, and if the timing is right for you.

“We certainly hope that our mobile game marketing will help win consumers who have not considered the brand before.”

Consumers Spent Over $108B On Interactive Entertainment In 2017

Interactive entertainment generated $108.4 billion in 2017, exceeding previous forecasts by SuperData Research. The analyst firm has released its annual Digital Games and Interactive Media report that reveals 2017 revenue alongside forecasts for video games, augmented/virtual/mixed reality, esports and game video content (GVC).

Free Is The New Premium

According to SuperData’s report, 2.5 billion—roughly one in three people on the planet—play free-to-play (FTP) games across PC and mobile platforms. In fact, FTP games generated $82 billion in 2017, accounting for 89 percent of revenue across mobile and PC markets.

The FTP market is expected to exceed $75 billion in 2018, with a majority of revenue arising out of Asian markets. Across mobile, FTP PC and social platforms, consumers spend far more money on mobile. Last year, gamers spent $36 billion, $9.1 billion and $5.9 billion on FTP mobile games across Asia, North America and Europe, respectively.

Mobile Mania

Overall, consumers spent $14 billion more on mobile games in 2017 than in 2016. This momentum was aided largely by games published in Asia, which contributed to a 31 percent year-over-year growth for the worldwide mobile market.

In the same way that mobile game whales contribute the most money while accounting for the fewest percentage of players, SuperData observed that the top 10 mobile games control 20 percent of global revenue.

Mobile revenue is predicted to reach $55.5 billion across Asian, North American and European markets in 2018.

Competition Rules Revenue

Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) was the breakout hit of 2017, bringing in 12 percent of all premium PC revenue and generating $712 million in just eight months. This, in turn, helped generate interest in the battle royale genre—paving the way for games like Fortnite and Knives Out.

Highly-competitive games topped the charts for premium PC in 2017 with PUBG, Overwatch, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) and Destiny 2 holding the top four spots. Big-name shooters also helped boost console revenue by 15 percent last year, with competitive titles rounding out the top 10.

If you don’t develop big-name shooters, however, there’s no need to despair. SuperData observed that 25 of the top 30 most downloaded games on Nintendo Switch came from indie developers.

Gaming Is A Spectator Sport

Esports generated $756 million in revenue and is on track to become a billion-dollar business in 2018, according to the report. A majority of this income—70 percent—comes from sponsorship and ads. Why? Because esports attracts consumer eyeballs and by extension, wallets. SuperData stated that esports attracts 258 million unique viewers.

Gaming is the second most popular video topic on YouTube, second only to music. However, 2017 proved to be a difficult year Google’s video platform as it struggled with brand safety and monetization. As a result, YouTube’s game video content (GVC) revenue dropped 50 percent year-over-year.

Twitch, meanwhile, accounted for 54 percent of the $3.2 billion GVC market. Despite having half the audience of YouTube, 51 percent of GVC revenue on Twitch came from users supporting their favorite streamers.

Changing Realities

Consumers spent $3.4 billion last year on augmented, mixed and virtual reality.

VR headset discounts and popular content drove revenue up 37 percent for extended reality (XR), which includes AR, VR and mixed reality. Oculus, in particular, benefited from price cuts, allowing the headset to outsell HTC Vive in 2017.

PlayStation VR shipped 1.7 million headsets last year thanks to franchises like Resident Evil and Skyrim attracting consumers. An overall lack of non-gaming content limited XR revenue for the year, SuperData noted.

The future looks bright for interactive entertainment, especially with AR expanding to new audiences. This year, consumers are predicted to spend $7.7 billion on XR, driven by the launch of Apple’s ARKit SDK and non-gaming applications.

For Effective Instagram Marketing, Create A Closeness

With 500 million daily users, the marketing appeal of Instagram is hard to ignore, but any organic reach is saturated. Discovery, engagement and conversion can feel hit or miss among a sea of photo filters, but it doesn’t have to be—and it all starts with mindset.

“Treating Instagram as if you’re communicating with somebody you understand,” Tania Yuki, founder and CEO of Shareablee, told AListDaily. “This is probably the most useful head space shift from a marketing perspective.”

Set The Tone

“The experience of Instagram is like having a friend show you something that they find fantastic,” said Yuki. “Instagram is really about show and tell. It’s about experiences and it’s about the things you won’t find on the storefront—and probably won’t even find on the website.”

Instagram is, first and foremost, a photo-sharing site—so marketers need to consider the visual elements of a campaign up front.

“It definitely starts with the image,” Yuki said. “We’ve observed really big differences on how advertisers communicate with text alongside the image and whether they’re using hashtags to make sure the content is discoverable when people search. From a discovery standpoint, [hashtags] are incredibly important.”

“As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, ” Robert Rose, chief content advisor for Content Marketing Institute told AListDaily. “A wonderful picture can simply tell an emotional story in a very intimate way.”

Yuki described an “always on” strategy in which brands combine both organic and paid posts across Instagram. The site offers many ways to engage, but she has noticed particular success for brands that experiment with Stories.

“Create that closeness with the consumer,” she said, “[Create] that level of intimacy so that even if it’s an ad, it sure doesn’t feel like it.”

Rose mirrored this sentiment, noting that successful brands on Instagram create emotional messages such as humor and delight or inspiration to achieve one’s goals.

“I think if there’s something that ties them all together it’s that they focus on the emotional connection, without trying to actually sell anything,” he said. “They’re not trying to illustrate why their product is so awesome—they’re just trying to be awesome.”

Brands want to be professional, but having a bit of fun makes audiences feel that a real person is behind a post. When Shareablee ran an analysis a few months ago, it found that the effective use of three emoji increased engagement by an average of nearly 30 percent. Rose added that if emoji are appropriate so long as they are brand-appropriate and part of the messaging architecture.

“They are certainly popular and can quickly convey a message and save characters,” Rose said.

Spread The Love

With Facebook shaking up its News Feed algorithm—again—some marketers may look for organic reach elsewhere, like Facebook-owned Instagram. Yuki believes that despite these changes, both platforms remain important for marketers.

“Any brand wanting to make sure that they have a really viable paid and organic conversational strategy with their consumers should be focusing in on Instagram, but Facebook remains a really important way to build the brand and communicate stories,” she said. “Think about the two as part of a multi-platform strategy and know that maybe you’re not going to be able to count on Facebook purely for organic reach. [Facebook] really isn’t designed to create that sense of community from a content perspective.”

Rose doesn’t believe Instagram will offer anything in terms of organic reach that Facebook no longer provides, calling it “rented land.”

“Great, remarkable content, will certainly get its fair share of vitality, and organic reach,” said Rose, “but the days of building a big “community” on any social media channel are gone. All social networks are now simply broadcast media—where you must employ a thoroughly integrated paid and organic strategy to consistently reach your audience.”

Influencers: Risky But Worth It

Partnering with social media creators—aka influencers—has proven to be an effective way of reaching wider niche audiences for decades. One scandal can send audiences into an uproar, but Yuki says brands would “be mad” not to seriously consider the strategy.

Influencer marketing requires some steady constitution,” Yuki admitted. “There are no guarantees. As we’ve seen in the media very recently, you’re partnering with a person that you don’t own. That’s always going to come down to how much uncertainty as a brand you are willing to tolerate. One thing I will say with certainty is, influencers generate something like four to five times more total consumer engagement than every single advertiser, publisher, TV network and sports league combined.”

This doesn’t mean brands should enter into an influencer marketing campaign unprepared. Yuki recommends having a playbook just in case a partner goes off the rails—or at the very least, off-brand.

“It’s really about having good controls in place and paying really close attention, particularly with the bigger influencers,” she said. “If something were to go south, you’d have to have to react and decide how to respond very quickly.”

Data: Plan, Analyze, Repeat

Planning a campaign can be as simple or as complicated as a brand wants to make it—but knowing your audience should come first.

“Even before you even launch the campaign, use the data that is available to you to truly understand the sorts of images, messages and communication that is already resonating with the people you want to speak to,” Yuki recommends. “Make sure you’re crafting the right creatives for your audience.”

Data is certainly helpful, but social media comes with results built in.

“The really great thing about social media is that you don’t have to guess whether something is working or not or whether something appeals to consumers—there’s either a deafening silence or an astounding roar of feedback both positive and negative,” Yuki explained. “Monitor the results that you’re getting and make sure that you are doubling down on messages that are meaningful to the consumers.

“Your audiences are willing to help you understand what does and doesn’t appeal to them if you’re prepared to listen and adjust your approach based on the data that you get back,” she said.

With Sponsored Moments, Twitter Continues Publisher Focus

As Facebook chooses to distance itself from content publishers, Twitter is doubling down on its media partnerships with a new ad product: Sponsored Moments.

The social network has been experimenting with the feature with partners for some time, but now any Moment created by one of Twitter’s 200-something In-Stream Sponsorship publishers can be sponsored by interested advertisers.

As the first such Sponsored Moment appears, the ad product allows an advertiser to, in essence, turn any piece of journalism on Twitter into content marketing, with banner image selection and the ability to insert interstitial tweets.

As an extension of Twitter’s In-Stream Sponsorships program, Sponsored Moments offer monetization options for the company’s partner publishers in addition to Twitter itself.

“The goal with Sponsored Moments, as with all In-Stream Sponsorships, is tight alignment between advertiser messaging and partner content,” said Mike Park, Twitter’s vice president of emerging content products, in the announcement.

While Facebook has responded to the fake news accusations of the past few years by dropping out of the editorial game, Twitter is hoping to strengthen its ties with publishers and protecting brands on its platform with additional oversight. Last month, Twitter announced it would be enforcing its rules on hate speech and abusive behavior much more strictly.

“By working with premium publishers as part of an In-Stream Sponsorship, brands know exactly which partner they are working with, and can develop deep brand integrations within that partner’s content,” added Park.

Brands can only sponsor Moments posted by official Twitter publishing partners, allowing Twitter to protect brand safety by keeping a much smaller playing field. YouTube has been making the same efforts, though the wild west environment of user-generated content was much less receptive.

Twitter first announced they were testing an ad offering in this vein, called “Promoted Moments,” just two weeks after Moments first launched in 2015, but the difference between it and the final version are stark, further emphasizing Twitter’s commitment to editorial credibility.

“For publishers, Sponsored Moments is an end-to-end contextual solution for publishing and monetizing all forms of content on Twitter,” Park wrote. “It allows publishers to easily do what they do best: produce and tell stories about events.”

5 Major Shifts Marketers Can Expect In 2018

When Forrester predicted a year of reckoning for marketers in 2018, it said CMOs needed to pursue adtech trends and data in order to survive.

With new parameters for digital ad transparency put in place, the looming General Data Privacy Regulation, heightened emphasis on programmatic spending and martech and adtech continuing to converge, executives must track both the trends and the rules of their regulatory forces.

Heightening Transparency With ads.txt

For one, ads.txt adoption, a new means of eliminating the black market for digital ad inventory, is set to “explode” this year, said Tim Mahlman, president of advertising and publisher strategy for Oath, Yahoo’s parent company.

“It’s still relatively low right now, but advertisers are increasingly demanding more tools for transparency,” Mahlman told AListDaily. “They want an accurate representation of media impressions and who’s selling them—and they want to safeguard against counterfeit inventory through arbitrage and spoofing. Ads.txt helps.”

The Interactive Advertising Bureau announced plans for ads.txt in May to elevate transparency and prevent the sale of counterfeit and unauthorized impressions in programmatic. Over 90,000 websites have already jumped on board to use ads.txt, up from 3,500 in September, per Pixalate.

Mahlman said ads.txt is a more secure way for publishers to openly identify the platforms authorized to sell their inventory while helping limit bad actors. As more publishers adopt ads.txt and post it to their domains, advertisers can avoid counterfeit inventory and have more confidence in what they’re purchasing.

Mark Gorman, CEO of software company Matrix Solutions, said ads.txt is an important development for publishers and an opportunity to recapture some revenue and profit lost to the likes of Google and Facebook.

“Brands and agencies love buying digital because they believe they are getting direct impressions to the audience they want,” said Gorman. “Numbers give comfort, whether those numbers are really true or reliable. Now brands and agencies are beginning to realize that maybe what they thought they were buying wasn’t so hot.”

According to an Adform study released last week, ads.txt is reaching “universal pickup” as 82 percent of top US publishers, and 70 percent globally, on the Adform adtech platform employ ads.txt.

With transparency and reliability set to improve, Gorman wondered if the cost of digital ad placement will rise as well.

“One could argue that the current price includes slippage for fraud,” said Gorman. “We know today that buyers pretty much buy Google and Facebook. They do this because ‘big’ means better and safer in their minds. As ads.txt brings more reliability across the field, will that ‘bigger is better’ mentality go away when buyers realize smaller, more targeted publishers may offer more dedicated eyeballs?”

GDPR: A Data Subject’s Right To Be Forgotten

GDPR is a game changer for the online advertising industry, according to Tiffany Morris, general counsel and vice president of global privacy for Lotame, a data management platform. Though it’s not the death knell that many are fearing.

According to Forrester, 80 percent of GDPR-affected firms will not comply in time to meet the May 25 guidelines and will risk paying up to €20 million or 4 percent—whichever is greater—of global revenue for the year.

“In the ad industry, reception to this new regulation has generally been negative. Brands and agencies rely on consumer data to develop personal—and ultimately successful—advertising experiences,” Morris said in a statement to AListDaily. “The concern is that increased regulation of consumer data will increase the costs associated with interest-based advertising and potentially decrease the pool of consumer data available to marketers.”

“Progressive processing systems are crucial for GDPR, as one of the key challenges we’re seeing arise is the data subjects’ right to be forgotten,” added Marissa Aydlett, senior vice president of marketing for software company Braze. “In other words, when a user decides that they don’t want a brand or company to use their data, then those brands have to delete or ‘forget’ all of that user’s data.”

Gorman believes that a handful of small-to-medium-sized companies will be put out of business by EU regulators in an attempt to make examples of those entities, but the behemoths operating with billions will barely feel the impact of fines.

Facebook, one part of the ad duopoly, published its privacy principles today—all seven of them—ahead of the GDPR. The launch of the Privacy Center gives community managers and everyday users the ability govern all of their privacy controls.

“We’re designing this based on feedback from people, policymakers and privacy experts around the world,” said Erin Egan, Facebook’s chief privacy officer. “We recognize that people use Facebook to connect, but not everyone wants to share everything with everyone—including with us. It’s important that you have choices when it comes to how your data is used.”

Aydlett said that the challenge manifests itself with this question: how do marketers recognize, or “remember,” that a user wants to be forgotten when we’ve already deleted all of their data to comply with their request?

“Marketers need data tech that is architected around a more progressive modern-stream processing system that can create an interactive feedback loop to immediate action on data for personalization, orchestration, experimentation and security regulation,” she said.

Aydlett added that this progressive processing system will be especially important as the GDPR takes effect. She said that data foundation is critical as it relates to outdated historical data, and marketers should rely on adtech that serves as a partner to enable them to quickly and easily respond to data subject requests—such as the right to be forgotten, data portability and data accuracy.

Although the new guidelines could cause early problems for advertisers, Morris said that GDPR also brings key long-term advertising benefits by raising the bar for opt-in data collection.

“While this may reduce the scale of data collected, it will dramatically raise the quality,” she said. “This means better ad experiences for consumers and stronger ROI. More marketers will realize this as we get closer to the launch date.”

Streamlining With Adtech And Martech

With all of the regulatory forces and moving parts, another theme for marketers this year will be to make order out of the proverbial chaos when it comes to reviewing new methods of advertising.

“When it comes to managing priorities, regulation is not an option. Marketers need to take a pulse on what their business needs are, and what regulation exists or could be approaching. Planning is critical,” said Aydlett. “It’s the only way to be strategic and nimble. Specific to evaluating trends and fads in the adtech world, my advice for marketers is to take a pulse on their business needs and innovation priorities. Don’t chase shiny objects because you see others doing so.”

By blending adtech and martech, Gorman said marketers can better see a more streamlined ecosystem that is designed to cohesively work together, as opposed to a mashed-up ecosystem of forced compatibility across systems.

“It can help make more informed, strategic decisions,” he said. “A collection of legacy systems can cause a ton of confusion based on inconsistent data, and it can make transparency into what types of campaigns are moving the needle nearly impossible to measure.

“We’re going to see adtech able to identify how certain ad spots become more valuable over time, allowing marketers to adapt in real-time. The convergence of martech and adtech will help distribute key messages across platforms and require a data standard to capture accuracy.”

Mobile Native And Video Ads Shifting The Status Quo

By sitting at the helm of Oath’s advertising ecosystem, Mahlman said he’s also seeing an overall industry focus and trend shift toward mobile native and video ads this year, and that marketers will introduce new ad formats that improve consumer experiences and boost engagement as a result.

But since the average US consumer spends a total of five hours a day on mobile devices, Mahlman also wondered why mobile-advertising innovation and content experiences haven’t followed usage trends.

“We know that traditional display ads just don’t play in a mobile environment, and ad blocking is a good indication of how consumers feel about the content,” he said. “Mobile is the most important screen for global audiences, which should make it the most coveted real estate for brands and a place for innovation. The mobile ad format space is also ready for a real shake-up.”

Video will also change the measurement status quo, Mahlman said, with marketers migrating to a performance curve providing clearer intelligence on what works and what doesn’t. This will fuel more credible insight into ROI and elevate transparency across the board.

“It’s chipping away at traditional, flawed measurement systems,” said Mahlman on how the emergence of video is changing the way marketers measure success. “The industry is realizing that it doesn’t make sense to pay attention only to views. The shift away from the strict CPM-focused model—even if that shift has been slow—is a good sign for all parties and will engender more accountability from the ground up.

“Agencies, vendors and publishers are finally beginning to embrace more advanced measurement techniques to provide advertisers more context around performance,” he added. “Expect for that trend to continue.”

Programmatic Rising Substantially

One platform Mahlman doesn’t see subsiding anytime soon is programmatic, which he dubbed the “backbone of digital advertising.”

Forecasting a dramatic increase for automated ad buying, eMarketer predicts that 84 percent of all digital advertising will be programmatic. Despite ad fraud and brand safety concerns—nearly half of marketers don’t know where their ads are shown online—programmatic spend still reigns supreme, as marketers cannot afford a mass-scale pull-out of their decade-long investment in digital.

Mahlman said that while some advertisers are concerned over transparency challenges in the programmatic ecosystem and recent issues have weakened trust, executives are also mindful of the unique value programmatic advertising provides with smarter, data-driven transactions at scale.

“Programmatic marketplaces and DSPs are evolving to bring together the benefits of automation with increased quality controls such as blacklists and whitelists, as well as transparency with well-lit auctions and improved attribution,” he said.

Aydlett said that as the role of the CMO expands to face both regulatory forces as well as traditional trends, the customer experience will be dependent on the C-suite’s ability to utilize the right advertising and marketing solutions to meet consumer demands.

“The customer doesn’t mind if they are experiencing a message from product, marketing, digital or email team—they only expect a cohesive, conversation-like experience with brands that is consistent—not siloed,” said Aydlett. “Given today’s mobile-first world and tomorrow’s ambient computing environments, there is a fundamental paradigm shift happening as messaging experiences blend together.”

Cinemark Hires New CMO; Airbnb Appoints First Independent Board Member


Cinemark has made two executive appointments, tapping Wanda Gierhart for chief marketing officer and Sean Gamble for chief operating officer.

“Wanda’s extensive retail marketing background will provide great insights and augment the strength of our global marketing organization,” stated Mark Zoradi, Chief Executive Officer. “[Sean] has been deeply involved in the Company’s cross-departmental business decisions and has added tremendous value with his extensive financial and operational education and experience.”

Prior to joining Cinemark, Gierhart served as CMO for Neiman Marcus Group, Design Within Reach and Limited Brands. Gamble has been with Cinemark since 2014, when he signed on as executive vice president and chief financial officer.

Just one week after joining Facebook’s board of directors, Ken Chenault has taken the same position on Airbnb’s board, marking its first-ever independent member.

“Airbnb is built on trust. As the CEO of American Express, Ken has built one of the most successful trust-based companies in the world,” wrote Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky in an open letter.

Chenault will retire from his current position of CEO of American Express, a title he has held for 17 years, in February.

BuzzFeed will largely disband its non-news division, known as the BuzzFeed Entertainment Group, according to an internal memo obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. Ze Frank, currently the division’s president, will shift to the newly created position of chief research and development officer.

“These things keep changing and evolving,” BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti told The Hollywood Reporter. “The idea is that Ze can have a team of people come in and collaborate and figure out how to build new formats and evolve for the future: it’s a really appealing resource across the company.”

Frank has been with BuzzFeed since February of 2017, when he joined as president of BuzzFeed Motion Pictures.

After eight years as CEO of Activision, Eric Hirschberg has announced his retirement, slated for the end of March.

“During Eric’s tenure we’ve had historic performance and great successes. He is an inspiring leader, and we will all miss his creativity and tenacity very much,” said Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard. “He is leaving the team, the franchises and the business in a great place, and he goes with my full support and appreciation.”

Activision Blizzard has not yet found a replacement, declaring that it is now actively searching for one.

Facebook chief marketing officer Gary Briggs has announced his retirement from his position, citing plans to get involved in politics on behalf of the Democratic Party for the 2018 midterm elections.

“I am so grateful for my 4 1/2 years as CMO at Facebook and will work now on hiring my successor. It’s an amazing job at an amazing time with the best marketing team,” Briggs wrote in a Facebook status update. “While I’m getting ready for my next chapter, I’m not done yet. I’ll be here at Facebook fully committed until we hire someone great and they ramp up.”

Briggs has been with the social network since 2013, leaving a vice presidency at Google for the position.

Dr. Seongjoon Koo has joined J.D. Power as its first-ever chief data officer, where he will lead the analytics provider’s efforts in advancing its data science and machine learning capabilities.

“As we enter a phase of expanded innovation, Dr. Koo will lead the creation of the team, infrastructure and operating model to make J.D. Power an AI-centered company,” said Bernardo Rodriquez, J.D. Power’s chief digital officer.

Prior to joining J.D. Power, Koo held the title of director of data science at Encore Capital Group, leading the financier’s machine-learning development teams.

The Ad Council has promoted Kenneth Kroll to the position of chief financial officer, succeeding Jon Fish who departed from the organization in 2016.

“Over the last ten years at the Ad Council, Ken has shown an exceptional ability to leverage his business and financial acumen to empower our team and our campaigns to drive meaningful impact,” said Lisa Sherman, president & CEO of the Ad Council.

Kroll first joined the Ad Council in 2008, most recently reaching the position of senior vice president of finance.

Anthony Noto, Twitter’s chief operating officer, has departed the business to join online lender Social Finance as CEO.

“Anthony has been an incredible advocate for Twitter and a trusted partner to me and our leadership team,” said Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s CEO.  “On behalf of the entire team, I want to thank Anthony for his passion and his impact, and congratulate him on his new role.”

Noto had been with Twitter since 2014.

Live Nation has hired Patricia Flores as vice president of marketing for its newly created Live Nation Latin division, seeking to expand the live entertainment company’s Hispanic audience.

“Patty has a unique way of tapping into the hearts and minds of Latin music fans to help connect them with artists from across the globe,” said Hans Schafer, senior vice president of Live Nation Latin. “We’ve worked together in the past, and I’ve seen her creative marketing strategies elevate countless projects.”

Flores most recently was head of Latin marketing at AEG Concerts and Goldenvoice, overseeing campaigns for artists such as Mana, Juanes, Enrique Iglesias and others.

Hyatt Hotels has announced major corporate restructuring, eliminating the role of chief marketing officer in favor of a chief commercial officer. Hyatt’s current CMO, Maryam Banikarim, will leave the company at the end of April.

“This starts at the top with our leadership, and we are making changes to streamline the Executive Committee and to better enable us to maximize our core hotel business and continue our expansion into new lines of business,” said Mark Hoplamazian, president and CEO of Hyatt Hotels. “The changes we’re making will better position us to grow with focus to serve our high-end customers and guests in the places and with the experiences that matter most to them.”

Banikarim has been with the hotel chain for three years, previously serving as senior vice president and CMO of Gannet Corp, owner of USA Today.

Spirits distiller Pernod Ricard USA has appointed Jonas Tåhlin to fill an additional position, CMO of spirits for the US region, while retaining his title of CEO of Absolute Elyx USA.

“We are thrilled to welcome Jonas into this important position. Jonas has been a key member of the Pernod Ricard USA team over the past 10 years and has extensive knowledge of the Pernod Ricard Group and Brand Companies,” said Paul Duffy, CEO of Pernod Ricard USA. “His experience, coupled with his expertise and familiarity with the US market, makes him the perfect candidate to lead spirits marketing at Pernod Ricard USA.

Tåhlin first joined Pernod Ricard in 2008 and has been CEO of Absolute Elyx since 2014.

Andy Lark has joined Australian TV network Foxtel as its CMO, heading the brand’s marketing efforts as the company seeks to merge its operations with Fox Sports.

“Andy is an outstanding leader, globally recognized for his marketing and leadership in both large companies and high growth start-ups,” said Peter Tonagh, Foxtel’s CEO, to The Australian.

Lark most recently held the position of CMO at Xero, an accounting software firm, and has previously held marketing and communications jobs at Sun Microsystems, LogLogic and Nortel.

The Rest Of The C-Suite

(Editor’s Note: Our weekly careers post is updated daily. This installment will be updated until Friday, January 26. Have a new hire tip? Let us know at editorial@alistdaily.)

MGT Capital Investments has announced that it is ending its business relationship with John McAfee, who had served as the company’s chief cybersecurity visionary since August of 2017.

“I am looking forward to toiling in obscurity as the world’s foremost authority of all things cyber and crypto!” McAfee stated. “In all candor, the past two years have been action-packed and productive, and I want to thank all shareholders for their support. I leave MGT in much stronger condition than when I arrived and remain a major stakeholder.”

McAfee guided the company’s formation of its cybersecurity business, which MGT Capital is considering the possibility of selling or spinning off the division. According to its press release, MGT will instead focus on crpytocurrency mining.

Ralph Lauren Corporation is expanding its digital team, appointing three new senior ecommerce leaders.

Laura Porco, formerly leading ecommerce for the company’s Club Monaco brand, has been appointed senior vice president of ecommerce for Ralph Lauren North America. Filling her former position is Galen Hardy, formerly head of apparel merchandising at Zappos.

Additionally, Valeria Juarez has been promoted to the position of senior vice president of international ecommerce.

“We are moving urgently to expand our digital presence all over the world and bringing in the right senior talent to help us deliver,” said Patrice Louvet, Ralph Lauren’s CEO. “We have to meet consumers where they are, which is increasingly online, and digital expansion is one critical way we will drive new growth for our iconic business and brand.”

Florian Hunziker, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s head of developer relations, is departing the company, VentureBeat reports. He had held the position since January of 2017.

NewTV, a mobile-centric media startup, has appointed Meg Whitman CEO.

“Meg is one of the most accomplished and sought-after executives of our time. She has built and scaled some of the most important global companies today,” said Jeffrey Katzenberg, NewTV’s founder and chairman. “Her leadership, operational expertise and deep understanding of technology and consumer behavior will be invaluable in creating the future of mobile entertainment.”

Whitman most recently worked as CEO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, on whose board she continues to serve. Prior to its division into two separate companies, she also was president and CEO of Hewlett-Packard Company, and before that was president and CEO of eBay until 2008.

Marketing agency MarketCast has expanded its executive ranks, bringing on Jenny Matkovich as marketing director and Lee Doyle as executive vice president of global client strategy, Deadline reports.

Prior to MarketCast, Doyle worked at ad conglomerate GroupM as president of client development for Mindshare. Matkovich previously worked at T2 Tech Group as director of marketing.

Disney-owned BAMTech Media has hired Kevin Swint as senior vice president and general manager for its upcoming streaming video on demand platform, Variety reports.

Before joining Disney, Swint worked at vice president of content and services for Samsung, where he helped build the company’s Milk Music streaming service.

Jiang Wei has joined Legendary Entertainment, the studio behind Pacific Rim and Kong: Skull Island, as the head of its China unit.

Previously, Jiang led the Beijing-based production company Gravity Pictures, and before that served at Sony, where he assisted in development and distribution of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

Apple’s director of worldwide investigations, Lee Freedman, has left the tech giant for a new role at another tech giant, Facebook. Since 2011, Freedman led the company’s efforts to quell leaks.

At Facebook, Freedman will serve as director and associate general counsel for compliance for security and investigations, a largely similar position to his job at Apple. Jessica Kirschbraun will take over his responsibilities.

Arthur Martinez, Abercrombie & Fitch’s executive chairman, will step down from his role in early February. His responsibilities will be taken over by Terry Burman, currently Abercrombie’s lead director.

“My decision to step down as executive chairman and not stand for re-election to the board is part of a planned transition of the chairman role,” Martinez said in a statement. “With the company on a solid trajectory, this is the right time to hand over board leadership to Terry, who has outstanding credentials as a retail industry leader and is the right person to assume the role.”

Martinez first joined the clothing company’s board in 2014, and before joining Abercrombie helped lead a sales turnaround for Sears in the late 1990s.

Netflix has added Eutelsat CEO Rodolphe Belmer to its board of directors.

“We look forward to benefiting from Rodolphe’s wisdom, experience and global perspective as we continue to grow Netflix all over the world,” said Reed Hastings, Netflix co-founder and CEO.

Belmer has led the European satellite operator since 2016, and prior to that was CEO at Canal + Group from 2012 to 2015.

Former game hardware executive Phil Harrison has joined Google as vice president and general manager, he reported in a Tweet on Monday.

Prior to joining Google, Harrison spent over 25 years at Sony and Microsoft, holding executive positions for each company’s gaming divisions.

Andrew Edelson has joined Fox Content Labs, the advertising division of Fox Network Groups, as its APAC head.

“It’s an honor to join such a household name in entertainment. I look forward to focusing on a few key initiatives – transforming the FOX brand into something more culturally relevant in each local market, leveraging our creative production resources to deliver bespoke branded work for all screens and capturing data across all our channels to help clients know consumers better,” said Edelson. “If we can do all this, it won’t feel like advertising, it will feel like the new FOX.”

Edelson joins Fox after spending 10 years in China expanding GroupM and MEC China’s entertainment unit, working on films such as Iron Man 3, Now You See Me 2 and What Women Want.

The Priceline Group has hired David Goulden as executive vice president and chief financial officer, succeeding Daniel J. Finnegan, who retired last year.

“[Goulden] brings tremendous financial acumen and global operating experience to the Group, and we believe he will be a great asset as our business continues to expand and invest in new technologies to help people experience the world,” said Glenn Fogel, Priceline’s CEO.

Prior to joining Priceline, Goulden worked at Dell Technologies as president of is infrastructure solutions group, and before that was CFO for EMC Corporation, which Dell acquired in 2016.

National Milk Records (NMR), a dairy and livestock information services provider, has expanded its marketing team, promoting Nicci Chamberlin to lead the new group.

“The appointment of a new marketing team will enhance our internal capabilities and is an exciting step in NMR’s growth strategy,” said Andy Warne, NMR’s managing director.

Prior to her promotion, Chamberlin held the title of regional field business manager.

Job Vacancies 

Product Manager – APIs Ayzenberg Pasadena, CA
Sr. Brand Marketing Manager Nordstrom Los Angeles, CA
Sr. Partner Marketing Manager Microsoft Redmond, WA
Sr. Partner Marketing Manager, Adobe XD Adobe San Francisco, CA
Vice President of Marketing AutoZone San Diego, CA
VP, Product Marketing Oracle Redwood City, CA

Make sure to check back for updates on our Jobs Page.

Nutella Marketing Stunt At Intermarché Drives French Shoppers Hazelnuts

A steep discount on the ultra-popular hazelnut-chocolate spread at a French supermarket chain has highlighted that even for Nutella, marketing still follows the law of supply and demand. After Intermarché discounted its supply of Nutella by 70 percent nationwide, supermarket employees witnessed the sort of chaos normally reserved for dipping sauces.

Nutella manufacturer Ferrero was not responsible for the radical discount, which drew crowds as large as 200 before the stores opened.

“The company Ferrero wishes to recall that this promotion was decided unilaterally by the brand Intermarché,” a company spokesperson said in a statement, adding that Ferrero “deplores this operation and its consequences that create confusion and disappointment in the minds of consumers.”

After some customers came to blows, police were called to several stores to maintain order.

“They were like animals. A woman had her hair pulled, an elderly lady took a box on her head, another had a bloody hand. It was horrible,” one Intermarché customer told French newspaper Le Progres.

One Intermarché manager theorized that consumers weren’t likely to benefit from the promotion to begin with. “I stored them at the registers to prevent dealers vampiring the promo,” Jean-Marie Daragon, a store director in Montbrison, told Le Parisien“We hunt for the promophages, resellers who are sometimes grocers. Each time, these people hang pots in the store to benefit at the expense of other customers.”

“It’s more of a nuisance than anything else,” said an Intermarché employee to Le Progres. “There is no margin and besides it was not our usual clientele.”

It seems doubtful that either Intermarché or Nutella will benefit much from either the promotion or the press coverage, if the theories of Nutella scalpers are true.

The discount is set to continue through Saturday.

Reba McEntire As Colonel Sanders Stays True To KFC Humor

Kentucky Fried Chicken may have cast Reba McEntire as its latest celebrity portrayal of Colonel Sanders, but as she sings in the new ad, “nothing has changed.”

Colonel Sanders looks more or less the same in KFC’s new ads for Smoky Mountain BBQ fried chicken, except that he happens to be played by a woman—Grammy award-winning country artist Reba McEntire.

McEntire plays Colonel Sanders as a country music star performing in a honky tonk music establishment. His trademark white suit now features sparkling fringe and appears to be tailored slightly at the waist, but the character remains male. He just happens to sing with McEntire’s clear, female singing voice.

“I’m Colonel Sanders, the same as always,” McEntire sings as the country music star Colonel, “Absolutely nothing has changed. Please ignore this likeness a famous country singer, I’m definitely not a woman.”

McEntire makes a cameo as a member of the audience, catching his hat and making a gesture of approval at the “famous country singer” lyric. In another spot called “Country Music Singer,” she plays Colonel Sanders who dresses up as Reba McEntire for inspiration but changes his mind and stays true to himself.

This marks the first time Colonel Sanders has been portrayed by a woman or a famous musician.

KFC’s announcement comes at a time when public outcries for female equality and gender discussion have reached a fever pitch—but these new tongue-in-cheek ads are consistent with the company’s previous marketing campaigns.

The official press release focused not on McEntire’s gender, but her occupation. It’s tempting to assume KFC is trying to capitalize on the discussion around female empowerment—something the brand denies—but Reba McEntire as Colonel Sanders as Reba McEntire doesn’t exactly say, “we take ourselves seriously.”

McEntire herself doesn’t see the ads as making a statement, but rather a continuation of KFC’s humor and a reflection of her own affinity for the brand.

“It was a great thing to do,” the country singer told USA Today. “It’s a spoof, and I’m an actress and that’s how I took it.”

McEntire joins an ever-growing rotation of celebrity Colonel Sanders characters—some of whom represent different flavors of fried chicken. The country music star was chosen to represent Smoky Mountain BBQ because of her Southern roots.

Videos of the new Colonel Sanders character with his Smoky Mountain BBQ chicken have been uploaded to the KFC’s YouTube channel and will make their debut as TV and video ads beginning January 28.