ACME Nominated for Top Music-Brand Firm by NARIP

The National Association of Record Industry Professionals found it in their heart to include us in their recent ‘Best in the Biz’ survey. We were nominated for Top Music-Brand Firm. We’d like to extend a big, sincere ‘Thank You’ to whoever nominated us, and of course, to anyone that votes for us. We are honored!

See the survey here.

We May Be Biased, But We’d Say… Of The New Millennium!

In 2008, the worlds of music and branding aligned in a unique and resounding way. This resulted in several noteworthy initiatives, partnerships, ventures, etcetera, as well as some incredibly cool track usages for broadcast TV and Web advertisements.

Sadly for some music industry hopefuls, the branding equation wasn’t the savior they had sought. But as the music industry continues to evolve into a digital- and media-led business, branding remains a vital way for those who create and produce the music to monetize it.

Here are my top 5 list of newsworthy branded-music initiatives and top 5 track choices for 2008:

1. TAG Records. In April, Procter & Gamble partnered with the record label Island Def Jam Music Group to launch a recording imprint tied to its TAG men’s deodorant and body spray. Jermaine Dupri, the Atlanta-based rapper and music producer, was named president. Brand-alliance guru David Caruso of Acme Branded Content brokered the deal. Hopefully, his music will meet his and (even) consumer expectations. Red Bull, Mountain Dew, Levi’s and others are beginning to take on the role of nouveaux-record labels.

Read the full article here.

First of all… THANKS to AdWeek for thinking of TAG Records. The project is incredibly special to us at ACME so we love seeing the TAG movement receive recognition.

To see if the music meets consumer’s expectations, wait until the new year for the big noise, check Q’s myspace now, or google’em.

The Denver Nuggets really like him. They made his song their official song for the season and play it during player introductions:

Launch of the I AM KING Website.

What a fantastic project!   It was a bit of a whirlwind, but we made some new friends and are looking forward to the future!

Visit the site!

Sean John – I AM KING

One of our latest projects… but we are too busy at the moment to elaborate.  So, more to come!

Adidas Originals House Party

Still doing some homework to see how integrated this one is, but we like so far.

First, the invitation:

Followed by the House Party:

No matter what… It looks like fun.

Social Media – Leveling the Marketing Playing Field

One of the numerous aspects of social media that I find compelling is the way it (the movement and the technology) has brought the more forward-thinking members of the marketing industry together – agencies, brand managers, technology providers, suppliers, competitors, you name it.   Obviously, social media brings all sorts of like-minded people together, regardless of the industry.  The camaraderie you find across a number of more creative industries is fueled by social media-driven connections.  Sure, people may meet at conferences or tradeshows, but lasting connections are forged in social media.  How else are you going to stay in touch these days?

I recently came across an interesting project called The Project 100:

What is The Project 100?

100 authors.  400 words each.  1 Collaborative Book on “Project 100: Marketing in the Social Media Era.

I have been involved in modern digital marketing since its inception, but I have never seen marketers from all walks of life – from behemoths like P&G to the smallest non-profit – rally around something like they do social media.  People certainly rallied around the web back in the day, but this is a more narrow slice of the digital channel that people are seemingly dedicating their working existence to for the sake of marketing.

Marketing people and companies are carving out their niche, and in doing so, are using social media to weave vast networks of other like-minded marketers – regardless of their place in the marketing world.  The guy with the Facebook app is befriending the CMO of the beverage company.  The outspoken blogger is earning the respect of the blogging CPG Marketing Director.  All because of a mutual respect for and belief in the opportunities around social media and some mutual success.  Finally, we have an amazing set of tools for casually and painlessly maintaining these relationships.

Would the CMO typically give the Facebook app developer the time of day if they were forced to rely on phone calls, email and in-person meetings?  No way.  But we happen to have the perfect meshing of mutual interest, admiration, tools, and most importantly, the need to innovate in marketing.

If I am just being naive, just let me be.  I am just going to enjoy.

ADWEEK Profile: ACME’s David Caruso

Check Profile: David Caruso

Branded Entertainment x Adweek


Excerpt:

Branded entertainment, in general, is primed for high growth. According to PQ Media’s “Branded Entertainment Marketing Forecast: 2008-2012” — released before the financial crisis hit Wall Street and beyond — the sector is expected to reach 13.9 percent growth this year, with ad expenditures projected at approximately $25 billion. Last year, ad spending on the sector was about $22 billion. The report suggests double-digit growth through 2012, and notes ad spending will likely surpass $40 billion.

Read the full article – which features input from ACME’s David Caruso – here.

Dedicated to My First Love: Hip-Hop

“…Told her if she got an image and a gimmick
That she could make money, and she did it …
Now I see her in commercials, she’s universal
She used to only swing it with the inner-city circle
Now she be in the ’burbs lookin’ rock and dressin’ hip
…who I’m talkin bout y’all is hip-hop”

– Common

Loving hip hop, in the past, meant following the newest trends, as well as to perform acapella renditions of classic hip hop songs with my friends. It meant observing and sometimes following urban fashion trends. It meant religiously listening to Hot 97 to be up on the newest songs, and avidly watching Free and AJ host BET’s 106th and Park to learn the latest dances. It meant disobeying my mother’s wishes to switch to a musical genre that didn’t frequently use offensive language. I loved hip-hop so much I fantasized of acquiring an internship and eventually landing a job at a major record label such as Def Jam or Atlantic Records. The internship I got instead exceeded any daydream I had, let alone any expectations I had for the internship. So like Common, I took loving hip-hop to the next level the summer of ’08; I committed to her.

My desire to be closer to hip-hop led me to Acme Content Co, a branding company. The opportunity wasn’t necessarily what I had in mind, but I was willing to give it a shot. I was told that corporate giant P&G, was looking to successfully market their body spray, TAG, by differentiating the product from the competing body spray. P&G and its companies observed that there were no body sprays that targeted young, urban males. P&G and Acme agreed that the best way to successfully market to urban, young males was through hip-hop. In order to believably market to this demographic, they decided to team up with the living hip-hop legend, and coincidentally, the president of Island Def Jam, Jermaine Dupri to start a record label from the ground up. These perceptive observations led to TAG Records’ birth, a little before I signed on to work for the internship. I started working just as they were deciding between two acts. They finally agreed on the lyricist Q da Kid. I must admit, I was fairly impressed with the decision to sign Q, because the other act would’ve been a much safer choice because of the whole N.E.R.D./ Lupe Fiasco/Kanye West vibe the group had going for it. But instead Q was chosen, despite his rawness. They saw potential in this dude from Brooklyn, who was also committed to hip-hop and decided to take a chance on him. I respected that. I also respected their decision to give him creative freedom with very reasonable limits. So learning this, I felt pretty confident that I would soon feel comfortable joining the team that would help to make both P&G’s and Q’s dream come true.

I courted hip-hop mainly through TAG’s Myspace page. I communicated with other music lovers, and fans of both TAG and Q. I also helped to build our network through Core Djs’ networking site. I officially became the intern/community manager. Every day I listened to our friends’ music and help to decide which artists would make “Spotlight.” I also made sure I was up to date with the ever-evolving music industry by reading blogs. I also loved the perks, such as free music, attending commercial shoots and other major events as well as meeting hip hop celebrities. Like all relationships, it wasn’t always easy, but if you love what you do, then all the work is worth it.

All in all, the summer internship at Acme was a very unexpected, but thoroughly, enjoyable one. Through the internship, I am still fervently committed to hip-hop and in this relationship for the long haul.

– Ernestine Belgrave, ACME Intern

Lauren Conrad + mark x MTV

Lauren in ‘The Club’

Lauren in ‘The Date’