TikTok Sensation Khaby Lame Helps Xbox Launch “Simply Next Gen” Campaign With Ayzenberg And ION

Don’t sell to Gen Z, entertain them. Few brands take this advice to heart as much as Xbox. This time, the internet culture connoisseurs at Xbox, which just celebrated its 20th anniversary, have partnered with Ayzenberg and Khabane “Khaby” Lame – one of the world’s most popular TikTok creators, with 120.7 million followers – on a campaign to encourage holiday sales of its Xbox Series S console. 

Launching today, “Simply Next Gen” comes to life via a video in which Senegalese-born Lame—who became a viral sensation for his underproduced, deadpan TikTok reaction videos about finding easier ways to do burdensome things—is shown watching a clip of a tree knocking down an outdoor fort moments after its builder secured its foundation.

A simpler way to build (or demolish) forts as Khaby demonstrates? Simple—turn on your Xbox Series S with the touch of a button and play Fortnite. The campaign will launch on Khaby’s TikTok and will be supported across Xbox’s owned and operated channels.


Simple as that. The Xbox Series S is Simply Next Gen @Khabane lame #gaming #simplynextgen

♬ original sound – Xbox

Ayzenberg and Xbox’s decision to partner with Khaby marks a growing trend among brands utilizing influencers to reach a targeted audience. In this case, the “Simply Next Gen” target audience isn’t the typical gaming audience that game influencers tend to reach.

According to Ayzenberg chief creative officer Gary Goodman, the main goal of “Simply Next Gen” is to connect with those who may be new to console gaming and are generally considered casual gamers. Ayzenberg believes that the Xbox Series S is the lowest barrier to entry for those who want to experience true “Next Gen Gaming.”

Five years ago, Khaby wouldn’t have been a part of the campaign equation. Goodman says instead, the agency would be looking at a more traditional entertainment celebrity from film, TV, music, or sports to appeal to this wider audience.

A campaign of that nature would’ve had to have been amplified with a pretty hefty media buy, so much of which would’ve been a shotgun approach to hopefully find the right audience. With Xbox’s “Simply Next Gen” campaign, Ayzenberg sought to communicate to an audience that already knows and values Khaby’s core message.

“As Xbox’s Social Media AOR, we have spent the last eight-plus years honing our integration of Creative, Strategy and Audience so that we are able to bring really targeted ideas like this to our client that we both know how to execute and that we know will perform,” said Goodman.

Though influencers have commanded a larger portion of brands’ marketing budgets in recent years, at this point it’s second nature for Xbox to capitalize on moments like those that Lame is so skilled at creating. For Xbox, being authentic in who they are and how they communicate to their vast, diverse audience is a huge priority, one that requires an influencer whose core message and authenticity align with what a brand is trying to say.

“What’s so exciting about working with influencers is that they have built their own audiences out of the very same tenets – they are being themselves every day and the world tunes in to watch and support them,” Goodman told AList.

Goodman’s hope for the campaign is to see the Xbox community and many others create content that follows Lame’s “Simply Next Gen formula” of doing hard things the simpler way using Xbox Series S as well as to inspire people to be turned on to the joys of gaming on the console.

“I couldn’t be more proud of the final creative for this campaign. It was a perfect alignment of both our video creative and social creative teams to bring the right idea, with the right message and the right influencer. Our client Josh Munsee instantly fell in love with this approach and was able to champion it throughout the org. And when things just fall into place like that, and everyone is aligned…you know you’ve got a winner,” added Goodman.

Xbox “Simply Next Gen” Credits:

  • Josh Munsee, Sr. Manager, Xbox Global Marketing
  • Gary Goodman, Ayzenberg Chief Creative Officer
  • Allen Bey,  Ayzenberg Creative Director/Editor
  • Taylor Rhoads, Ayzenberg Creative Director
  • Drew Shafer, Ayzenberg Associate Creative Director
  • Chy Lin, Ayzenberg Account Director
  • Jonathan Clark, Ayzenberg Producer

Investing Deeply In Your Customer With GoDaddy’s CMO Fara Howard

Fara Howard is the CMO of ​​GoDaddy where she oversees all marketing strategies and works with their internal creative team. 

In this episode, Fara and I talk about her career background and GoDaddy’s brand evolution over the last several years. One of the several charges Fara led has been their experimentation on branded entertainment, launching their docuseries “Made in America”. She describes the experience as truly inspiring, and she shares how it’s performing as well as what they’re learning from the project.

Later in the show, they also discuss GoDaddy’s branded pandemic campaign “Open We Stand” and how they were able to launch it so quickly through their internal creative agency. Fara’s short answer? “The closer you can bring a creative organization to your business and to your business strategy, the better the work is.”

Listen to the full episode to hear more about how to keep and retain talent within a creative function inside your company as well as how to work with them effectively.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The value of knowing your customer
  • Creating gritty, authentic stories
  • How to work with creative teams effectively

Key Highlights:

  • [01:36] Fara’s first job
  • [02:47] Fara’s path to CMO
  • [05:32] Tips for changing the industry you work in
  • [06:58] GoDaddy’s strategic journey of transformation
  • [09:45] The docuseries “Made in America”
  • [12:37] Investing deeply in your customer
  • [14:54] The “Open We Stand” campaign
  • [18:07] Generating content during the pandemic
  • [20:31] Finding and retaining creative talent 
  • [25:07] Where GoDaddy is going
  • [28:37] An experience that defines Fara, makes her who she is today
  • [32:23] Fara’s advice to her younger self
  • [33:50] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [35:00] The brands and organizations Fara follows 
  • [38:55] The biggest threat to marketers today

Resources Mentioned: 

Follow the podcast:

Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Social Media Marketing Trends To Watch In 2022

Marketers aren’t clairvoyant but they can keep a finger on the pulse of trends. To help brands stay ahead of the competition, HubSpot Blog surveyed more than 1,000 global marketers from B2B and B2C brands and a handful of industry experts to create a 2022 marketing trends guide, covering privacy and AI to social media and SEO. Ahead we break down HubSpot’s findings on social media marketing trends.

As HubSpot notes, 79 percent of Americans have some type of social media account while there are 3.7 billion social media users worldwide, making it a regular part of people’s lives and a critical tool in enhancing any marketing strategy.

Live Content Will Be A Leading Social Media Format

Among the social media marketers HubSpot polled, 68 percent reported that audio chat rooms such as Clubhouse are the most effective social media content while 59 percent report the same for live video.

Ninety-six percent of those investing in live audio content intend on spending the same amount or more on it through 2022. Live video, on the other hand, is reported by 9 percent of respondents as driving the largest return on investment (ROI) of all social media formats. These formats enable brands to connect directly with audiences in a meet-them-where-they-are context while discussions range from current issues and events to the brand’s stance on those issues to the products and services themselves. 

The authenticity and dynamic nature of this format can’t be matched as heart-to-heart conversations may be interspersed with expert opinions, Q&A-style discussions, how-tos and entertainment.

TikTok Will Continue To Gain Brand Interest

TikTok began to go viral roughly three years ago, sparking a new medium through which brands can connect with audiences without sounding sales-y. The social media app now boasts 1 billion global users and caters to a vast array of audiences. Having recently launched a number of advertising and marketing features for businesses and creators, TikTok has positioned itself front-and-center in the race to secure the highest quality content, the highest number of users and creators and brands that will continue engaging with it for marketing purposes.

Sixty-seven percent of marketers intend on increasing their TikTok investment in 2022 and 10 percent of marketers who employ some sort of social media into their overall marketing strategy intend on investing the most in TikTok throughout 2022.

Most Marketers Will Concentrate On Three To Five Social Media Platforms

Of those social media marketers polled, 64 percent use three to five platforms, 11 percent use one or two, and 7 percent use seven or more. Managing three to five platforms allows brands to expand their reach to a variety of audiences while allowing for their marketers to engage with each one without exhausting their bandwidth or producing low-quality content.

In order for a brand to determine how many platforms to be on, i.e., how able a social media marketing team will be at building an effective and engaging strategy, HubSpot suggests answering the following:

  • How many social media marketers are on your team?
  • Which social media platforms have audiences that best align with your brand’s targets?
  • How much time will it take to master a strategy on each of the platforms?
  • Which platforms, if any, will not benefit the overall marketing strategy right now?
  • Which platform’s content, if any, can be easily repurposed? (such as TikTok and YouTube Shorts)

Influencer Marketing Will Evolve From Trend To Common Marketing Tactic

When HubSpot asked global marketing professionals which trends they planned to invest in for 2022, 34 percent said influencer marketing, ranking it first and above other trends like mobile web design and short-form video marketing.

While 57 percent of respondents that currently leverage influencer marketing say influencer marketing is effective, 46 percent of them plan to increase their investments in 2022. Additionally, 11 percent say influencer marketing is the top ROI-generating trend they’ve tested.

More than 56 percent of marketers who invest in influencer marketing work with micro-influencers, according to HubSpot.

Video Marketers Will Keep Content Short

HubSpot found that short-form content is the second most effective trend marketers are currently utilizing. Short-form content requires less bandwidth and aligns well with the fast-paced attention spans of online audiences in a variety of demographics. 

More than 31 percent of global marketers currently invest in short-form video content, 46 percent of them consider the strategy effective when it comes to performance and engagement. In addition, next year 89 percent of global marketers plan to continue investing in it or increase their investment.

Permanent Social Media Posts Could Overtake Ephemeral Content

Brands have observed that permanent social media content—namely standard posts, videos and live events that live on a platform’s feed and can be viewed again days later—might be more effective than ephemeral content such as Instagram Stories and Snapchat.

HubSpot’s survey results show that 44 percent of global marketers plan to increase their investment in permanent social media content, while 8 percent say it generates the most ROI compared to other marketing strategies they leverage. Meanwhile, 25 percent of respondents cited ephemeral content as the “least effective” trend they invested in.

Lastly, 37 percent of marketers said they plan to decrease their investment in ephemeral content.

However, HubSpot cautions against writing off ephemeral content completely as it can still provide other brand awareness benefits and unique content experiences.

According to Kelly Hendrickson, a social media marketing manager at HubSpot, Instagram Stories’ fleeting design and fun editing options give brands a new strategy for producing content that varies from their other social media content.

“Instagram can organically serve up a wall post across a wide span of time, so there’s less of an opportunity for brands to be timely (who wants to see New Year’s post when they’ve already given up on their resolutions?!). Since Instagram users are more active on weekdays, during the standard workday, it seems users are looking for a break,” Hendrickson said.

Hendrickson urges marketers to remember that the combination of a running clock and a lively audience presents a big opportunity for brands to lean into quick, in-the-moment content that showcases the light-hearted side of their brand, adding that succinctness and clarity are key in content.

Refilling The Creative Well: Pitch Edition

I just spent a four-day weekend with my family in Carpinteria, CA in much the same way I did nearly every day the last 20 months: with the outcome of multiple game-changing new business pitches hanging over my head like the Sword of Damocles. 

Will the wind blow slightly to the left and nudge one of the other finalists over the finish line? Or will an intangible in our deck or the confident tone in our voice lodge in the mind of a decision-maker in such a way that tilts things in our favor? 

How can I allow myself to enjoy the seals frolicking in the surf or pause to read the placard about how salt marshes form when the next text I receive could change the very course of my agency… my career… my life?

Pitching new business is a helluva drug.

The juiciest briefs come in reeking of a brighter future, intoxicating with visions of what could be: the promise of a more respectful and collegial client relationship; the potential for exciting creative and technical innovations; the possibility of team-sustaining profits and awards.

And then, for the next two or three or four weeks, the pitch is all-consuming like new love or gnawing hunger. REM sleep is rearranged to better serve the conscious and unconscious obsession with unearthing the big idea. Content consumed holds tantalizing hints that must be teased out. Weekends must be sacrificed, as they are the only stretches of time where there are no meetings to interfere with actually doing the work.

The fuel cells burn bright and burn hot, with little thought or care for how they will perform after the final Q&A’s (if you started the presentation call on time and didn’t chew into your buffer that is) and thank you’s have been said.

But those fuel cells must be refilled. Those that ignore the warning signs do so at their peril. As is true of all drugs, what goes up must come down.

I’m sure there are a million ways to refuel, but here’s what’s worked well for me as I’ve come to accept that pitching (despite the romantic promise of utopian thinkers) isn’t going anywhere in agency life any time soon.

As with most things in advertising, the following recommendations are an alchemical mix of hard data, hard-knock wisdom, anecdotal experience, things we stumbled upon on Twitter, and in-the-moment inspiration. All tied up in a nifty bow by a favorite quote in Latin (so it MUST be true): Solvitur Ambulando (“it is solved by walking”). I first read this quote inscribed on a rock at the center of a labyrinth in Sedona, Arizona (another physical location with its own mental state) many years ago and it’s stuck with me ever since. Any mantra good enough for St. Augustine, Aleister Crowley and Oliver Sacks is good enough for me.  

One: stock up on long stretches of thinking about nothing. And if nothing isn’t available, think about subjects like how salt marshes form or how great that bongo player is

Two: take long walks that go nowhere in particular. And if you must go somewhere, let the most important choice be whether you go left down the beach or right up the beach.

Three: read something that gives you pleasure. After immersing yourself in category research and the ecstatic art of whiteboard-staring, take your brain elsewhere (for me it was roving with vampires in the summer of ‘76).

Four: give back to those who absolve you of your pitch mode sins. For every core member of the pitch team, there is a friend, a loved one, a child, or a bartender who missed your presence while you were living the brief. Be there for them. Shower them with your attention. Kiss their elbows. Buy them the Toxic Waste they crave, though it may pain you greatly to do so.

Five: commit yourself to learn from the pitch: win, lose or draw. We can’t live in the Carpinteria of the mind forever. Commit to the retrospective (never the post-mortem). We must return to the battlefield better. Stronger. Faster. 

Especially when you’re fighting for that brighter future that maybe, just maybe, is a pitch win away.

The 3 Pillars Of Effective Media Planning

As much of everyday life remains in flux, effective media planning will require marketers to focus on three pillars: people, continuous planning and connected planning. That’s advice from Jay Nielsen, senior vice president of global planning products for Nielsen, who recently shared how brands can navigate the current and future state of disruption during the firm’s “Back to the Drawing Board: Media Planning Through Uncertainty” webinar.

People Should Be At The Center Of Planning

Now is a critical time for brands to understand how to reach the consumers they’re trying to connect with. To do so, Nielsen suggests commingling first-party data with second- and third-party data to understand what your target audience is engaging with. Making decisions based only on what you’ve previously done or what competitors are doing won’t cut it.

Audiences are interested in content that represents them, so as diversification grows,  on-screen representation should be at the core of a brand’s efforts to connect with people. Nielsen found that across the TV landscape of the top 300 most-viewed programs in 2019 (broadcast, cable and streaming), 92 percent of all programs measured showed some diversity (women, people of color, or LGBTQ+) in recurring casts.

Treat Planning As An Always-On Exercise

Continuous planning may provide the largest opportunity for brands. The 12-18 month planning cycle may not be effective going forward, so brands should look to plan throughout the year.

According to Nielsen, academic research shows that changes in brand share of voice are closely linked to changes in market share, marking a thorough understanding of how competitors are spending advertising dollars and how heavily they’re reaching your desired target.

To understand if increased competitive spend is being directed at their target or elsewhere, brands should measure their competitor’s reach and frequency to the brand’s own target in channels where it’s possible to track.

Combining in-flight optimization and post-campaign learning can also help maximize results. For one of Nielsen’s clients, a subscription-based global media and entertainment company, showing agility both in flight and on successive campaigns enabled it to lower its cost per acquisition (CPA). The client leveraged both attribution and marketing mix modeling (MMM) to maximize their results and optimized channel allocation with MMM. These efforts resulted in a decrease of 11 percent in CPA.

Additionally, the client utilized multi-touch attribution (MTA) to optimize the digital campaign in-flight, resulting in a decrease in CPA of about 7 percent to 13 percent. In total, the final investment resulted in a 20 percent decrease in CPA.

Thinking algorithms are faster than people, advertisers often take a set it and leave it approach when it comes to artificial intelligence or self-serve platform but Heather Cohen, Ayzenberg vice president of media, urges marketers to remember that while the new tools are great, they’re really just another form of calculation.

“We still find that humans are the most agile when it comes to actual campaign decision making. So while the algorithm may get you the lowest CPA, it doesn’t necessarily grant you the most qualified audience you’re trying to get traction against (e.g., you may be trying to improve your LTV, garner higher retention, increase your organic multiplier/halo effect or breakthrough to a new audience segment to improve sentiment/reputation/gain SOM). You still need a person to make that decision on what’s valuable after you weigh the pros and cons,” Cohen told AList.

Create A Holistic View Into Campaign Success

An opportunity for planning to evolve exists if brands can use uniform target definitions in multiple channels by ensuring their data, software and partners are in sync.

Brands should leverage historical data and use the same audience profiles across each of their software solutions. This systematic approach includes an understanding of the audience, their location, as well as building plans against that audience, quickly activating the plans, measuring against the plans and repeating this process.

Nevertheless, the sheer number of partners marketers work with makes a start-to-finish approach difficult to adopt. Nielsen’s 2021 Annual Marketing Report found that brands of all sizes and industries have very little confidence in their existing martech capabilities. Though the importance of data quality and consistency can’t be overstated, it remains a hurdle for marketers regardless of budget size.

The report also found that brands are planning to address this challenge by increasing both their marketing analytics projects and technology software budgets by an average of 30 percent over the next year.

Nielsen suggests brands leave behind antiquated planning schedules and conduct planning as an always-on exercise. With connected processes in place, marketers can have a more holistic, simplified view of processes, making reaching the right audience at the right time more attainable than ever.

“As consideration to purchase windows are decreasing, always-on is the reality in today’s non-linear purchase cycle,” said Cohen.

YouTube Expands Test Of Cross-Platform Shorts Function

YouTube is aiming to bolster its TikTok rival Shorts with the expansion of a cross-platform function that gives users direct access to the short-form video experience. YouTube has been testing the function globally with a small percentage of mobile iOS users and recently said it’s preparing to extend the test to Android.

For those in the experiment, closing the YouTube app while watching Shorts will drop them into the Shorts player when they reopen the app, the company explained. If they exit the YouTube app while watching any content other than Shorts, they won’t be directed right into Shorts the next time they open the app.

YouTube is giving those selected to be part of the experiment the option of providing feedback about the cross-platform feature via the “send feedback” button via the Shorts player’s three-dot menu. 

According to YouTube, the experiment will hopefully provide insight into whether users find it helpful to start from where they left off the last time they used the app. It also helps determine YouTube’s outlook on TikTok and the overall shift to short-form video. 

The experiment applies only to those who engage with Shorts, YouTube’s answer to TikTok, which now boasts a reported 1 billion monthly active users and recently ventured into gaming through a Zynga partnership that’s bringing a new single-player music runner game called Disco Loco 3D to select markets exclusively for TikTok.

Despite the fact that TikTok is the short-form vertical feed format champion, it has been offering features that creep into YouTube territory, namely increasing the maximum video length from 60 seconds to three minutes back in December. At one point, TikTok also reportedly tested five-minute videos.

YouTube Shorts was initially launched in India in 2020 before being released in the US in March and globally in mid-July. The short-form video platform enables users to create up to 60-second videos with music, original audio or “remixed” content sourced from other YouTube videos unless creators have chosen not to allow their content to be repurposed in Shorts.

Along with TikTok, Instagram’s Reels and Snapchat’s Spotlight, Shorts content can be uploaded into or filmed directly in the app. Its editing components also allow for adjusted speed, a green screen effect, setting a timer and combining clips, among others.

Testing of direct access to Shorts comes at a critical stage in Shorts’ timeline given that usage is on the rise. YouTube parent company Alphabet announced that Shorts had surpassed 15 billion daily views in Q2, more than double what it had seen in Q1. Though that the increase may be due to market expansions and not to heightened demand.

YouTube has been engaging in a number of strategies to strengthen Shorts’ ability to compete with TikTok. In October, it announced a partnership with musician Ed Sheeran to host previews of his latest tracks exclusively in Shorts. The activation gave users access to over a dozen new songs ahead of their October 29 release date in addition to the ability to create their own #SheeranShorts takes for every track.

Then there’s the $100 million Shorts Fund, which offers select creators up to $10,000 per month for creative and engaging content. Shorts reaches out to thousands of creators each month who have uploaded at least one eligible Short to award them money. Eligibility is based on level of engagement and compliance with the app’s Community Guidelines, and is available to creators within and apart from the YouTube Partner Program. The fund, which launched in May, is available in the US, the UK, Japan, Russia and more countries. YouTube is also developing a long-term payment model for Shorts, but no word on the progress just yet.

The Value Of Leading With Service With Author Drew Neisser

Drew Neisser is the founder of Renegade and CMO Huddles. Most recently he’s added author to his list of accomplishments with the publishing of his book Renegade Marketing: 12 Steps to Building Unbeatable B2B Brands.

In this episode, Drew and I discuss the concepts in his new book, what makes B2B marketing great, and what makes great marketers in B2B marketing. Drew firmly believes to be distinct in the industry and transform your brand it starts from the inside out. He says, “If you don’t have your employees behind [the initiative] then you don’t have your customers behind it.”

Listen to the full episode to hear more about what it takes to stay distinctive in marketing and how to sell through service.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to radically simplify B2B marketing
  • Using artfulness for ideation and distinctive marketing
  • The value of leading with service

Key Highlights:

  • [02:02] Drew’s go-to drink 
  • [03:30] Drew’s latest book, Renegade Marketing
  • [05:14] The CATS framework
  • [10:28] Why new products or marketing initiatives fail
  • [13:47] What marketers are doing to stand out
  • [16:22] Being distinctive 
  • [18:30] Leading with service
  • [22:09] Radically simplify your metrics 
  • [25:13] What a culture of experimentation looks like
  • [30:04] An experience that defines Drew, makes him who he is today
  • [32:41] What is the “Huddle” concept?
  • [33:49] Drew’s advice to his younger self
  • [35:16] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [36:34] The brands and organizations Drew follows
  • [38:47] The biggest threat to marketers

Resources Mentioned: 

Follow the podcast:

Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Burger King Chief Marketing Officer For North America Ellie Doty Resigns

This week in leadership updates, Ellie Doty steps down as Burger King North America chief marketing officer, KFC hires Nick Chavez as chief marketing officer, Qdoba elevates Karin Silk to chief marketing officer and Bed Bath & Beyond names Rafeh Masood as inaugural chief customer officer.

Burger King Chief Marketing Officer For North America Ellie Doty Departs

Ellie Doty has stepped down as Burger King’s chief marketing officer for North America after being in the role for just over a year.

Yosef Hojchman, who’s been with the company for 15 years, has filled in as interim chief marketing officer.

Previously, Doty held an array of chief marketing roles at Chili’s, KFC, Yum! Restaurants Canada and Taco Bell.

KFC Appoints Nick Chavez As Chief Marketing Officer 

KFC Corporation has scouted Nick Chavez as chief marketing officer for KFC US, effective November 29.

Chavez replaces Andrea Zahumensky, who left in April. Previously, Chavez was Nintendo of America’s senior vice president of sales, marketing and communications for 11 years.

Qdoba Elevates Karin Silk To Chief Marketing Officer

Qdoba Restaurant Corporation has promoted Karin Silk to chief marketing officer.

Silk previously served as Qdoba’s vice president of off-premises and menu (product marketing, culinary) and prior to that was Rubio’s Restaurants, Inc.’s senior vice president of marketing.

Bed Bath & Beyond Names Rafeh Masood First Chief Customer Officer

Bed Bath & Beyond has named Rafeh Masood as chief customer officer, a new position that combines digital and brand roles, including customer support and user experience.

Masood steps into the role after having served as chief digital officer since May 2020 and as interim chief brand officer since September 2021 following Cindy Davis’ resignation.

Eyemart Express Promotes Katy Hanson To Chief Marketing Officer

Eyemart Express has elevated Katy Hanson to chief marketing officer.

Prior to the promotion, Hanson acted as the company’s interim chief marketing officer and held the role of vice president of strategy and planning.

Amazon India Enlists Rashi Goel As Director Of Marketing

Amazon India has retained Rashi Goel as its newest director of marketing.

Previously, Goel served as business executive officer at Nestle, managing breakfast cereals in South Asia.

HBO Max Promotes Pia Chaozon Barlow To Executive Vice President Of Originals Marketing

HBO Max has elevated senior vice president of HBO Max originals marketing, Pia Chaozon Barlow, to executive vice president of originals marketing. She will oversee both HBO and Max originals in a newly unified marketing division.

Before joining HBO, Chaozon held senior marketing positions at WarnerMedia, Netflix, Twentieth Century Fox and HBO.

Mack Trucks Taps David Galbraith As Vice President Of Global Brand And Marketing

Mack Trucks has named David Galbraith as vice president of global brand and marketing.

Galbraith was previously director of experience marketing and brand partnerships at Volkswagen of America, Inc.

Roadside Attractions Head Of Marketing Dennis O’Connor Exits

Roadside Attractions head of marketing Dennis O’Connor has resigned after 14 years with the company.

O’Connor oversaw all marketing efforts that grew the company’s theatrical grosses from under $10 million in 2007 to over $100 million by 2018, according to Deadline. He also spearheaded the campaign for the company’s top-grossing domestic title I Can Only Imagine, which produced $83 million.

O’Connor’s previous roles include co-head of marketing at Picturehouse, head of theatrical marketing at HBO and head of marketing for United Artists Pictures.

Universal Music Group Nashville Elevates Annie Ortmeier To Senior Vice President, Streaming Marketing

Universal Music Group Nashville has promoted Annie Ortmeier to senior vice president of streaming marketing.

Ortmeier, who’s been with UMG since 2013, recently served as vice president of marketing of digital accounts for the company. 

Twitter Canada Appoints Jennifer Bairos Hofer As Head Of Marketing

Twitter Canada has hired Jennifer Bairos Hofer as its new head of marketing.

Hofer previously served as Rogers Communications’marketing director, TSC.

Chief Marketing Officer Of Mandarin Oriental Jill Kluge Resigns

Mandarin Oriental chief marketing officer Jill Kluge will be stepping down from the position after 30 years with the company. She will continue in a part-time position as brand advisor for the hotel chain.

Prior to serving as chief marketing officer at Mandarin Oriental, Kluge served as the company’s global director of brand communications and director of public relations.

Manon Brouillette Named Chief Executive Officer Of Verizon Consumer Group

Verizon Consumer Group has appointed Manon Brouillette as executive vice president and chief executive officer.

Before joining Verizon as chief operating officer and deputy chief executive officer in July 2021, Manon was the president and chief executive officer of Vidéotron.

Star TV Network Elevates Kaumudi Mahajan To Senior Vice President Of Marketing And Strategy

Star India, an Indian media conglomerate and wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company India, has promoted Kaumudi Mahajan to senior vice president of marketing and strategy.

Mahajan previously served as Star TV Network’s vice president, head of marketing and content strategy for Star Pravah.

Mobile Gamers And Fast Food

During the height of the pandemic, several Quick Service Restaurants (QSRs) closed or reduced operations and started offering takeout and delivery. Though consumers cooked at home more and spent less on restaurants, including QSRs, the QSR market has rebounded quickly compared to other casual dining restaurants and is well-positioned to succeed in our post-pandemic environment, according to AdColony’s Mobile Trends in QSR report.

Consumers are still cautious of densely populated public spaces, meaning food delivery, prepared food and groceries will continue to outpace in-restaurant dining despite the roll-out of vaccines and safety measures. Despite this, demand for takeout is actually increasing. QSRs can take advantage of this phenomenon now and post-pandemic given their emphasis on hygiene standards and how they’ve utilized technology (i.e., QR codes, online and mobile apps) to make delivery and takeaway seamless.

According to a Buyer’s Edge Platform survey, 36 percent of consumers are hopeful that the tech solutions currently in place, such as contactless ordering and payment, continue post-pandemic. Consumer sentiment has changed in other ways as well, which AdColony breaks down into three new consumer trends in QSR. First, consumers are spending more. The average check size at Starbucks, for example, grew 25 percent in mid-2020 and continues to climb today. Second, consumers are stocking up. Dunkin’ Donuts, Baskin-Robbins and Domino’s have all observed larger, family-sized or bulk orders. And third, consumers, families in particular, are eating more fast food than they did pre-pandemic.

For its latest report, AdColony studied the food and drink habits of mobile gamers, a cohort that’s growing rapidly in the US. There was a 12 percent increase in the number of people playing mobile games in early 2021, with 80 percent of all mobile users in the US reporting playing mobile games at least once per month and more than 50 percent saying they played weekly or more frequently than that in 2020.

AdColony and GWI conducted a survey of 1,044 mobile gamers and found that 35 percent are eating fast food at least once per week, 22 percent more than once per week and 16 percent at least once every two weeks. Despite the stereotypical image of a mobile-gaming fast-food consumer, 46 percent of those who eat it more than once per week and 53 percent of those who consume it at least once per week are female.

Mobile gamers who consume fast food at least once per week demonstrated disparate preferences in regard to the types of games they play, other forms of entertainment and their online interactions with brands, AdColony found.

Among this cohort, 27 percent use an app that tracks calories; and they’re more likely than mobile gamers who do not eat fast food at least once per week to play word, strategy, casino, arcade and action games. They’re also more likely to visit a movie theater and purchase online content to keep forever.

Mobile gamers who consume fast food at least once per week are more likely than other mobile gamers to visit a brand’s website, use a search engine to research a product or brand from an ad, read reviews about the product or brand from an ad and download the brand’s app. The only similarity that this cohort shares with other mobile gamers is the percentage of them who click on an ad (34 percent).

Over 33 percent of mobile gamers dine out at least once per week while 52 percent do so at least once per month. Among mobile gamers who eat fast food or at restaurants at least monthly, drive-thrus at McDonald’s, Taco Bell and Wendy’s are the most popular, while dining in is the preferred option only at Five Guys.

Sixty-five percent of mobile gamers reported ordering takeaway food on apps and websites and 54 percent reported using drive-thrus more than they did before April 2020. As for delivery via apps and websites, the top brands are in pizza delivery with Domino’s being the most popular, followed by Pizza Hut and Papa John’s. Roughly half of mobile gamers who increased their frequency of curbside pickup behavior during the pandemic did so more often with Subway (45 percent), Domino’s (32 percent) and Starbucks (32 percent).

AdColony predicts that many of these behaviors will remain through and after the pandemic. Positive user experience and the convenience of apps may even increase some of these trends in the future. Brands seeking to capture some of this growth must showcase the convenience of their curbside pickup app offerings for saving time waiting in lines and having to order on the spot and then waiting for the food to be prepared.

As for general brand awareness, mobile games offer the chance to reach potential customers with new menu items or promotions before they’re even at the drive-thru or open the app to order. Because mobile gamers are proven fast food consumers and use online and app ordering services regularly, in-app advertising can help propel a brand or product to the forefront of their minds efficiently and seamlessly.

Pinterest Launches Pinterest TV With Live, Original And Shoppable Creator Shows

Pinterest is entrenching itself deeper in the social commerce arena with the announcement of Pinterest TV, a collection of live, original and shoppable shows on the Pinterest app. Set to debut on November 8 in the US on iOS and Android, the episodes will star creators from Pinterest and cover a different topic each day, including beauty, fashion and food, to name a few.

Pinterest TV episodes will air Monday through Friday at 3 p.m. PDT and will be recorded and available for Pinners to view on-demand later. Products will drop in a live shopping setting every Friday where Pinners can save on brands like Allbirds, Crown Affair, Melody Ehsani, Outdoor Voices, Mented and more. 

In addition, during Pinterest TV episodes, creators will be able to showcase and tag products that Pinners can then purchase on the retailer’s own site—a feature that will help propel the livestream shopping category to $25 billion in US sales in 2023, according to Coresight Research.

Pinterest TV hosts will also have a “shopping toolbox” with a “product drawer” that includes product prices, details and drops in addition to collaborations. The drawer also displays how much time/inventory is left and features a limited-time-offer module to offer discounts.

Among the most-anticipated shows on Pinterest TV: Christian On with American fashion designer and Project Runway alum Christian Siriano, Unfail My where director and screenwriter Monica Suriyage and other Pinterest foodies attempt to “rescue” holiday dishes from around the US and Tom Tries where Olympic diving gold medalist and knitting guru Tom Daley learns new skills from grandmas and grandpas.

In addition to Pinterest TV, the platform is launching a virtual studio where Pinterest producers can work directly with creators to develop unique content, provide “backstage” A/V support and go live themselves. The creators that have hosted Pinterest TV episodes during the pilot phase have increased their following on the platform dramatically, with some more than doubling their followers after a single live episode, according to Pinterest.

Accessing Pinterest TV is simple: a TV icon in the upper left corner of the app takes you to the episodes where you can interact with hosts, ask questions via chat and get answers in real-time.

The launch of Pinterest TV comes on the heels of Pinterest’s announcement that it’s investing $20 million into a Creator Rewards program—its first in-product creator monetization program and an expansion of its $500,000 Creator Fund.