Monthly Archives: August 2013


The PR Power of Crossbranding

monopoly empire

Monopoly has a certain advantage for its PR team in the fact that the game itself is iconic, and any significant changes made to the icon will be dutifully reported by the press at large. Its latest incarnation, however, takes it to a whole new level by invoking other icons in a massive cross-branding effort. Coca Cola and McDonalds are just some of the brands that players will be able to purchase in the newly revised edition. It’s hard to imagine a better PR coup for all involved. ┬áMonopoly gets major media coverage for expanding its own brand, as well as a quick boost in sales with the new board. The featured brands themselves meanwhile score even bigger as they indelibly imprint themselves on the open psyche of the young game playing public. Score!


Facebook Wants to be Popular. Really.

gary briggs facebook google
Let’s admit it. The hipster/geek/ironic/sardonic subculture made a good run for it. They influenced TV, movies, literature, internet memes, and other various forms of virality. But what happens when a company that itself is supposed to be cutting edge realizes that the real money lays not with the intellectual bufferoons but with the common folk? Facebook, who has always considered itself hip with a laid back flavor, has recently made a personnel change that suggests that they’re becoming hip to the new normal. And the new normal is (drumroll please)… Normal! Facebook is changing tracks and moving away from offbeat and subtle imagery to embrace a more popular aesthetic. To accomplish this, Facebook is hiring Gary Briggs, a marketing executive who has worked at Google, Ebay, and Pepsi. Will ill-worded snarkery finally meet a not unwelcome demise? Only time will tell, my good friend Mr. Watson.


The Opposite of Preaching to the Choir


The TSA (Transportation Security Administration) is the agency most likely to win the Favorite Blechhh! award. Even if they do their job properly, they’re going to annoy people with invasive searches, travel delays, and general governmental obsequiousness. Which makes it funny that another beloved government organization, The U.S. Government Accountability Office, has found an uptick in extra TSA naughtiness. They found more security breaches, more rude behavior, and more general laziness. Come on! The TSA? If you need to hold somebody accountable, take it up the ladder. Picking up the water gun and shooting the comatose duck doesn’t earn you any points in the court of public opinion.


Pushing Baby Like a Man

The high performance buggy This is more a clever commercial than a PR outing, especially as the souped up wheels won’t be showing up anywhere besides TV land. That being said, the image being touted is arresting enough that everybody’s going to be sharing it anyway. What Dad can resist the masculization of the final frontier? Good work. The only downside is that connecting it with the product actually being promoted, a new Skoda car, might eventually prove difficult.

Read more about it here.