Sunday, April 16, 2023

Marketing News of the Week: Mrs. Maisel, an Emoji, and More


This past week, there were many news stories that reflected effective marketing strategies, branding campaigns, and brand storytelling.

The fifth and final season of this exceptional show returned on April 14 on AmazonPrime. As part of publicity for the show’s return, the cast rang the opening bell for the New York Stock Exchange, and New York City Mayor Eric Adams proclaimed the day as “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Day” to celebrate the show’s creative and economic contributions to New York City.

According to NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, “Emmy-winner The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel created thousands of jobs for NYers, supported small businesses, boosted the local economy, and showcased the beauty of NYC over five seasons. The hires included:
*344 dancers
*580 musicians
*981 dayplayers
*35,619 background actors
*366 NYC locations shot.”

How many other shows have received such publicity?

With the coronation of King Charles III less than three weeks away, tradition met the modern age of communication. Buckingham Palace released the official “Coronation Emoji” for use with the hashtags #Coronation, #CoronationWeekend, #CoronationConcert, #TheBigHelpOut, and #CoronationBigLunch. According to the Coronation News and Updates account on Twitter, the emoji was based on “St. Edward’s Crown, recreated in 1661 for King Charles II and based on the ancient crown used for centuries before.”

Also, in Coronation news, after months of speculation, Buckingham Palace announced that Prince Harry would attend the Coronation, while Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, would remain in California with their two children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.

Eric Schiffer, Chairman of Reputation Management Consultants, said, “The impact to Meghan on a global scale in not attending is negligible and won’t damage her [personal] brand outside of the UK. Within the UK, there is a contingent that is anti-Meghan, and this becomes a further log thrown to the fire to power additional comments that are going to be unfavorable.”

The “Phantom of the Opera” musical took its final bow on Broadway today on April 16, after 35 years and nearly 14,000 performances – making it the longest-running show in Broadway history. This was more than Cats, A Chorus Line, Chicago, The Lion King, Wicked, Hamilton, and Les Misérables.

The show lays claim to the title of biggest job producer in U.S. theatrical history, according to CNBC: “During its run, Phantom created an estimated 6,500 jobs, including those of 400 actors, in New York City, and some have been with the musical since it opened in 1988.”

Tickets for the final weekend performances in New York City were as high as $4,000 each. But don’t worry…if you absolutely, positively, must see Phantom, you can still buy a ticket for the show in London.

The new LG logo comes to life in an animation that turns it into a winking emoji-like face to appeal to a younger audience. The new LG logo is expressive and animated and nods, smiles, and winks. The tagline of “Life’s Good” will remain and will be used more widely in branding and product packaging in a new typeface.

According to William Cho, CEO, “Having a strong, consistent brand strategy enables us to better communicate our value proposition and unique identity, which harmonically blends innovation and warmth.”

This week, the streaming service that offers a variety of award-winning TV shows, movies, documentaries, and more on thousands of Internet-connected devices, celebrated its 25th anniversary.

Remember the 280-character limit on Twitter? This small limit forced users to consider their thoughts before writing concise tweets. However, since Musk took over the platform late last year, much has changed. Most recently, as part of the Twitter Blue option with a cost of $7.99 a month, users can write tweets with as many as 10,000 characters, which could be between 1,500 to 2,500 words.

According to tech expert Lance Ulanoff, “Twitter’s primary purpose is to be a fast, steady steam of news. It’s not the place for massive articles.”

This definitely changes the scope of the platform’s content – who wants to read that much content on Twitter? I definitely don’t!

First, the platform labeled NPR’s account as “state-affiliated media,” and then changed it to “Government-funded Media,” the same term it applies to propaganda outlets in Russia, China, and other autocratic countries. The news organization says that the label is inaccurate and misleading, since NPR is a private, nonprofit company with editorial independence. Further, it receives less than one percent of its $300 million annual budget from the federally-funded Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

NPR’s CEO John Lansing said in an interview that NPR will no longer post fresh content to its 52 official Twitter feeds, becoming the first major news organization to go silent on Twitter. In an email to staff, Lansing explained his decision, “It would be a disservice to the serious work you all do here to continue to share it on a platform that is associating the federal charter for public media with an abandoning of editorial independence or standards.” In an email to readers and fans, Lansing wrote, “Now, more than ever, public access to factual, non-biased journalism is crucial.”

After NPR’s exit on Twitter, Boston-based WBUR announced that it would also stop posting on Twitter “in solidarity with NPR,” according to a statement from its CEO, Margaret Low.

Mary Quant died on April 13. She was a British fashion designer who pioneered the swinging style of the 1960’s and was often credited with creating the now-iconic mini skirt. Some compared her impact on the fashion world with the Beatles’ impact on pop music.

According to Huffington Post, “The look she created was sexy and fun, a sharp break with the predictable floral dresses commonly worn in the conservative, austere years after World War II. Quant introduced miniskirts with hemlines up to 8 inches above the knee to the London scene in 1966, and they were an instant hit with young people, in part, because they shocked and offended their elders…She named the skirt after her favorite make of car, the Mini, recalled how it offered a feeling of freedom and liberation…She soon diversified her interests, developing a popular makeup line and also moving into kitchenware and household accessories.”

A few items missed the last marketing update but are worth mentioning:

According to CNN, “The barcode, the rectangle of thick and thin parallel lines seen on nearly every grocery product, package, piece of luggage, and prescription bottle is turning 50 years old. Since its inception, the Universal Product Code (UPC) has become the most prevalent tracking tool for products around the world. Billions of items are scanned everyday around the world, and the laser-powered technology behind UPCs has changed the retail industry in particular.”

The birthdate of the barcode is celebrated April 3 (1973) because that’s the day the IBM version created by senior engineer George Laurer was approved as the industry standard. Laurer received no royalties. The first item scanned with a barcode was a package of Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit chewing gum for $1.39. Years later, the Smithsonian added a replica of the gum to its exhibition on the history of the barcode.

Finland became the 31st member of the NATO alliance on April 4. Previously, Finland had no plans to join NATO due to its close ties to Russia, but due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Finland changed its mind.

Fanta’s new visual identity aims “to inspire people to find the fun in life and make the plain playful, with a look that remains unmistakably Fanta.” In addition, the orange color is gone.

According to Sue Murphy, senior director of design at The Coca-Cola Company, “Fanta’s identity, and particularly the logo, has evolved significantly from the 1940’s to today. With this refresh, we aimed to crystalize each element of the brand to be bold and iconic so that we could ensure it would stand the test of time and be recognized around the world.”

What other marketing news stood out to you this past week?

What will be the marketing buzz next week? Tune in to read all about it.

Image Credits: AmazonPrime and Buckingham Palace.

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