58 years ago today, Barbara Millicent Roberts made her debut at the American Toy Fair in New York City. Also known as Barbie, she stood 11 inches tall, sported blond hair and wore a black and white swimsuit, complete with accessories like sunglasses, high-heeled shoes, and hoop earrings.
Ruth Handler, cofounder of Mattel, created Barbie after seeing her young daughter ignore her baby dolls and play make-believe with paper dolls of adult women. Handler named her new doll after her daughter, and it became the first doll in the US with an adult body.
Barbie debuted at an opportune time - the 1950s saw the post-war boom and the rise of the suburban middle class. Children were becoming a new group of citizens called “teenagers,” and television was taking off as an advertising medium. In 1955, Mattel became the first company to air commercial sports to children with its sponsorship of the “Mickey Mouse Club.” Mattel used its sponsorship to introduce Barbie to America.
Television advertising remains the most powerful branding vehicle as there is no better way to realize the reach of that medium. Digital advertising, while lacking the same reach does provide opportunity for specific targeting, granular measurement, ad unit customization and interactivity. The lean-back environment of the television viewer does not necessarily lend itself for an interactive ad experience, but the digital delivery of YouTube TV does allow for ads customized on the viewer’s audience characteristics or on their behavior.
The initial carriage agreements provide YouTube with ad sales rights for the inventory which otherwise would have been earmarked for local advertising by the MVPD. There is also an undisclosed revenue share between YouTube and the content owner for those YouTube-sold ads. There will likely be further coordination between these parties involving addressable ad targeting for the content owner and bartering of ad inventory.
Super Bowl LI cemented one thing for sure: Tom Brady is one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time. Of course, we're a little biased here at clypd, with most of the team in Somerville (although we do have quite a strong and vocal New York contingent).
On Sunday, Brady and the Patriots managed to come back from the biggest point deficit in Super Bowl history to clinch their 5th title. For Brady's performance, he received the MVP award in a very awkward award ceremony with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
As one of the star athletes of match, Brady also made a couple of appearances while not on the field during the Super Bowl, during its commercial breaks.
As I read the news this week that Wieden and Kennedy and ESPN were parting ways after a 25 year partnership, I kept thinking, “follow me, follow me to freedom”. W+K was responsible for the long running “This is SportsCenter” campaign, among other great work for ESPN. The campaign, which began in 1994, mixed sports, celebrity, and a behind-the-scenes look at the high-rated sports news program.
“Follow me to freedom” comes from one of my favorite spots in the campaign. In this spot, SportsCenter’s production team engages in a Y2K test. Things don’t go well, and in seconds, alarms sound, the lights go out, athletes loot the place. Mark McGwire takes a baseball bat to a computer. Jonathan, the University of Connecticut mascot, a dog, absconds with some awards. The show’s announcers read highlights by candlelight.
As happens in December, there is a buzz around the return of a certain mythical figure, able to stop children in their tracks, bring adults to attention, and known to bellow “Ho Ho Ho”.
This time around though, it’s not a man in red with a white beard. This one is green. He is currently on a cross-country road trip and his goal is to change children’s behavior and maybe some grown ups’ habits too.