Coca-Cola Falls Flat Tackling Obesity

This past weekend my beloved New England Patriots, a team in the U.S. National Football League, lost in the conference championship game, falling one game short of the Super Bowl. I was devastated and inconsolable, and even as I write this I sadly consider what could have been.

Up until what ultimately became the Patriots’ final game, their season was fantastic. They won 12 out of 16 games and earned the second seed going into the playoffs. But against a motivated Baltimore Ravens team, the wheels came off and the Patriots were handily defeated, at home no less. I wholeheartedly expected the Patriots to at least make the Super Bowl, if not win it. I never expected this. 

I had a similar surprise as I watched Coca-Cola’s two-minute spot addressing the obesity problem, which is often blamed on the soda industry and high-fructose corn syrup. If you haven't seen it, take a look. 

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7 Reasons Storytelling Is Important for Branded Content

Gutenberg invented the printing press around 1440. 
The first radio transmissions were in the early 1900s.
The television became commercially available less than a century ago. 
The Internet is not even old enough to have a drink (legally; at least not in the United States).
Facebook and Twitter are just out of diapers, and the next big marketing tool is still in the womb or possibly just a twinkle in its creator’s eye. 

When most people think about marketing, these are the tools they think of: print, radio, TV and the web. None of these, however, are ingrained in us as much as storytelling. We’ve been telling stories for thousands of years, but we don’t have to go back that far to understand storytelling’s powerful effect on our hearts and minds. Go back only as far as your childhood, when you begged your parents to read your favorite story—the one you already knew by heart—just one more time. Why did you do that? Why was it so important to hear that story?

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Staying True to the Story: Where ‘The Lorax’ Went Wrong

It's been weeks. Why haven’t I gone to see the movie adaptation of my favorite childhood story, Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax? It wasn’t the trailers or previews, but rather the antics of Universal Pictures’ marketing department and their eagerness to slap a “Lorax Approved” logo on any product within earshot and produce beaming endorsements for any brand—however ill-suited they might be—willing to pony up. When compared to the lessons from the original story, the irony kills. The blasphemy is palpable.

From a marketer's perspective, The Lorax's awkward corporate love-fest, and the resulting backlash, prove that it’s now imperative to define your brand’s story platform—the core narrative at the heart of your brand, where all promotions and marketing should tie back to and stay true to. Read up on The Lorax's worst offense yet, the overall saga, and other exploits in nostalgic cinema after the jump.

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Occupy Wall Street, Defining Your Brand, and Storytelling

This post originally appeared in our October issue of "Live Report from the Future of Marketing," our monthly Post-Advertising newsletter. Subscribe for free here.

As the Occupy Wall Street movement starting to fade with the public still confused as to exactly what their story exactly was, many lessons can be learned from their efforts to change the world and why their movement never really gained traction. Could it have been because they were letting others define who they were and what their message was?

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Digital Archaeology Takes Manhattan

This post originally appeared in our June issue of “Live Report from the Future of Marketing,” our monthly Post-Advertising newsletter. Subscribe for free here.

A much buzzed-about event at last year’s Internet Week Europe, Digital Archaeology is now making its US debut at Internet Week New York. Archiving some the most significant websites in history on the machines and adjacent technologies of their respective years, the project makes an interactive museum of our recent past.

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Google Adwords and the Case for Natural Search

Paid search. Overwhelmingly ruled by Google and its AdWords platform, it allows deep-pocketed brands to cozy up to search results in exchange for a steady payoff. Our very own Jim Boulton (Deputy UK Managing Director here at Story) shared his thoughts on the program's pitfalls versus natural search, stressing the need for content creation over web payola. Read all about it at Figaro Digital.
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