Starbucks has designated over 7,800 of its US locations as Pokestops or Gyms where people can play the mobile virtual reality game "Pokemon Go." Starbucks also launched a limited-edition Pokemon Go Frappuccino as part of the partnership, which features a vanilla bean Frappuccino base, mixed with blackberries and raspberry syrup, followed by a whipped cream topping.
Diageo is making changes to its global marketing team a month after announcing the addition of Nestle's Gawain Owen as the company's first programmatic media head. The company has named David Gates managing director of the Futures division, while Mark Sandys and Cristina Diezhandino will take on expanded roles within Diageo's marketing structure.
Anheuser-Busch InBev's Shock Top brand has named Deutsch New York as its agency of record. Shock Top's measured media spend for the first half of 2016 was $21.6 million, based on a Kantar Media analysis.
Tito's Vodka owes a big portion of its success to a thoughtful, customizable direct email marketing program. The brand's initial email campaign logged a 60% open rate, creating an opportunity for the company to communicate directly with the 50,000 new subscribers it generated.
General Mills' management team changes topped the list of SmartBrief's most-read food and beverage stories this week, followed by Nestle's announcement of a new sugar formulation. Hormel's growth strategy, McDonald's expansion plans and H-E-B's Central Market additions rounded out the top five.
Build-A-Bear Workshop turns 20 next year, with 400 stores and plans that include a focus on storytelling and partnerships with AMC Theatres and Carnival Cruise Lines. The retailer has also resumed its Merry Mission holiday-marketing campaign that creates stories around reindeer characters.
Heineken has developed an internal ranking system to measure the creativity of its messaging, and the company wants to turn the strength of that process toward developing innovative mobile campaigns. "We want to be the benchmark for creativity in a mobile-first world," said Ian Wilson, Heineken's senior director for global, digital and marketing development.
The first video spot in the Martin Agency's new campaign for Geico features a defendant in a robbery case using Geico's insurance savings to get off the hook in court. The company plans to continue to roll out new ads in 2017.
Gatorade is giving a free drink to consumers who work up a good sweat with its new body heat-sensing vending machine. The "Sweat It To Get It" campaign is a fun way to physically demonstrate how Gatorade replaces the moisture that the body loses from exercising, said Raghav Mehta, brand marketing manager for the PepsiCo India Region.
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