Shaq stands in for Tony the Tiger, and Kendall Jenner gives tequila a shot: Trending
A quick look at the week’s winners, losers and newsmakers.
Ryan DePaul is a millionaire thanks to Mtn Dew. He won the soda brand’s Super Bowl ad bottle-counting contest, correctly identifying 243 bottles in this ad. “I’m counting as we are watching on TV, and then at one point, at the end of the commercial, a trunk opens and all these bottles fly out of it, so I’m thinking, ‘Okay, add 50 or so to it,'” the Rochester, New York native told his hometown ABC station. “Well, then me and my roommate argued for a little bit over the different numbers we had, and we put it in, and I guess I won that argument.”
Dew says the contest drew a quarter of a million entries and earned the brand 440,000 social media mentions on game day.
Chris Harrison, host of ABC’s "The Bachelor," might have lost a major endorsement gig as result of blowback from his comments about contestant Rachael Kirkconnell, who was reportedly photographed at an antebellum plantation-themed fraternity event in 2018. He decried the “cancel culture” and explained away the photograph as “from a long time ago,” in an interview with “Extra.” Amid criticism, he temporarily stepped away from the show, and then Crest indicated it is giving his new endorsement deal a second look, with the brand saying it was “deeply disappointed in his comments.”
Target named a new chief marketing officer on Tuesday and it proved to be our most-read post of the week. Rick Gomez vacated the role to take on the job of chief food and beverage officer as Cara Sylvester, a 14-year Target veteran, takes over as CMO. Ad Age readers also clicked heavily on two stories about Aunt Jemima’s name change, including this one about what the brand should do next, and this one about how consumers are receiving the change.
Move over, Tony the Tiger
Shaquille O’Neal takes center stage on boxes of Frosted Flakes with Crispy Cinnamon Basketballs. The cereal, hitting stores in April, is set to be sold for a limited time. Shaq is a Frosted Flakes “superfan,” according to the Kellogg Co. brand. He appeared thrilled seeing the box for the first time, a moment the former NBA star posted on social media earlier this week
Cheers or jeers?
Kendall Jenner, who may never live down her widely mocked 2017 Pepsi ad, is getting into the beverage biz—the alcoholic kind. The model and reality show star announced the brand, called 818 Tequila, this week to her 152 million Instagram followers, saying that the brand is “coming soon” and that she worked on it for four years. (818 is a Southern California zip code.)
But not everyone is raising a glass. Critics are accusing her of looking to profit off Latinx culture, points out liquor trade pub The Drinks Business, citing one widely circulated tweet:
Number of the week
15%: The uptick in demand for bird seed in the weather-plagued northeast for the third week of February compared with what is typical for the week, according to Planalytics, as consumers tried to help birds that could not find food amid the snow. More here on how brands are trying to “seize the freeze” of winter weather.
Quote of the week
“We are open-ish”—Elisa Silva, partner and managing director at Dallas-based agency 3HeadedMonster, on the complications caused by the unusual winter spurt hitting Texas. More here on how agencies are coping with what one exec called “mayhem.”
Tweet of the week
Red planet craze
NASA on Thursday successfully landed its Perseverance rover on Mars, and to mark the out-of-this-world occasion, Krispy Kreme sold a special red Mars-themed donut at select locations. The donut is filled with a chocolate cream and made to look like the red planet on the outside with caramel icing, red swirl and chocolate cookie crumbs. The donuts didn’t last the day however, selling out by the afternoon.
The rover carried the names of around 11 million people who participated in NASA’s “Send Your Name to Mars” program. Krispy Kreme gave out free donuts for those who showed their Perseverance “boarding pass” issued by NASA. Krispy Kreme also encouraged its followers to watch NASA’s livestream of the event and to use the hashtags #KrispyKreme and #CountdowntoMars to share how they were celebrating.
On the move
Banana Republic announced that Ana Andjelic will be its new chief brand officer. She was recently chief marketing officer at luxury brand Mansur Gavriel.
Instrument retailer Guitar Center said it has hired Paul Gimenez as its director of diversity, inclusion and belonging after a months-long search. Gimenez was director at Mentora Labs.
State Street Corp. has tapped Theresa McLaughlin as global CMO. She was most recently global chief marketing, customer experience and corporate citizenship officer at TD Bank Finance Group. State Street’s State Street Global Advisors division is the brand behind the well-known Fearless Girl statue.
Discovery tapped Patrizio “Pato” Spagnoletto as global CMO for Discovery Direct-to-Consumer as it looks to scale its subscription streaming service, Discovery+. Spagnoletto comes from Hulu, where he was head of marketing.
Contributing: Jessica Wohl, Adrianne Pasquarelli