Month: July 2015

Color Me Awesome with Alcatel

To demonstrate the awesome and interconnected features of the Alcatel OneTouch Watch and IDOL™ 3 Smartphone, GNF created a unique experience in Minnesota at The Color Run, the single largest event series in the world.

Color Runners were given a unique opportunity to borrow the Alcatel OneTouch Watch during the run to track key stats like steps, heart rate, and calories burned. Certificates listing the data from their run were given to the borrowers, many of whom just had to have the smartwatch for themselves and purchased their own at the booth that day.

GNF designed and displayed three IDOL™ 3 kiosk stations to show off the unique benefits of Alcatel’s unlocked smartphone and demonstrate how the smartwatch could connect and communicate with the IDOL™ 3. Consumers interacted with the devices firsthand to “unlock” the features for themselves. We created a sweeps where visitors could collect a stamp at each of the kiosk stations, present the stamped card, and get a chance to win an IDOL™ 3 Smartphone. Using the exclusive “Unlock App” created by GNF for the promotion, participants had to guess the secret code that would “unlock” the prize box. Two lucky winners cracked the code and went home with a free IDOL™ 3 Smartphone! They celebrated in clouds of colored dust.


What We’re Hooked On: Freightliner’s Record-Breaking Marketing, Facebook Video Ads, Kleenex Ad, & Amazon’s
New Patent


Freightliner’s Record-Breaking Marketing Feat

Photo Courtesy of
Photo Courtesy of

Freightliner broke the Guinness World Record for highest light output projection when it turned the Hoover Dam into a projection screen to announce the launch of its new Inspiration Truck. Media members and other influencers were present for the spectacular 420,000-square-foot display that took viewers through the history of Freightliner and outlined important milestones. After the show came the arrival of the new, fully autonomous driving tractor-trailer – the first ever to be licensed to drive on public roads. The Inspiration Truck drove in from the mountains above.

Why We’re Hooked: As a symbol of ingenuity itself, the Hoover Dam was the perfect place to host this monumental debut – connecting the location with core brand values in this never-before-seen stunt. The display shows that brands are constantly innovating. They are searching for new ways to make a larger impact and creating meaningful connections using the new technologies that are being invented every day.

Facebook’s Video Ad Pricing

Facebook Video Ads
Image Courtesy of

Facebook announced that it would be changing the way it charges for video ads by giving marketers the option of paying once the ad is viewed for more than 10 seconds. Prior to the change, advertisers were charged immediately once the video came into view on the users’ screens, which could lead to being charged for ads that the user quickly scrolled past. However, the new option isn’t perfect. Due to the electronic auction structure of ad buying on Facebook, advertisers who opt for the 10-second alternative could actually end up paying more.

Why We’re Hooked: The change comes after complaints by marketers. Ramping up video advertising to keep up with industry demands is inevitable for Facebook and keeps them in the game as other platforms, like Twitter, offer similar options for advertisers to choose from.

Facebook has been busy. Here’s some more Video Ad news…

Ad-Supported Video Testing – Facebook to Share Revenue with Creators

Facebook Video Ad Mobile Testing
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The company is testing a way to serve up related videos from advertisers with the users original video selection in the form of a suggested videos feed on iPhones. As the selected video is played in a window overlay, people can scroll down and click to watch related videos. If one of the selected related videos is an ad, Facebook will make money from that advertiser and share that money with the original video’s creators. As of now, they plan to keep 45% of the money and share 55% of the money with the original video’s creators – a split consistent with YouTube’s standards. It is still undetermined how video completion will factor into the money that gets shared with creators, though.

Why We’re Hooked: The proposed structure puts the power to choose which ads to watch – if any – in the users hands. This is yet another example that shows Facebook is devoting its time and energy into video ad solutions as a means to keep pace with business leaders, like YouTube, while creating its own unique approach.

Kleenex Ad is a Tear-Jerker

Video Courtesy of
Better grab a box of tissues before viewing this video ad by Kleenex, starring Chance, the wheelchair-bound dog. After being hit by a car, a local shelter rescued the puppy and gave him a second “chance”. The ad documents the inspirational story of the dog along with his adoptive owner, who’s also in a wheelchair, to prove that anything is possible. The “Someone Needs One” campaign, reminds users that Kleenex is there to dry their tears.

Why We’re Hooked: The ad has sparked up tons of conversation around the web, causing people to unexpectedly share personal stories about their special-needs pets who’ve gotten second chances. The success and positive word-of-mouth reinforces that social remains a strong sharing tool for brands, even amidst copious amounts of content and algorithm updates that may have unfavorable implications for brands.

Amazon’s New Patent? We’re All Ears.

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A new patent by Amazon may mean ear recognition technology for future cell phones. Ears are uniquely made up of different curves and points, which can help determine identity and could enable future Amazon Fire phones to be thumbs-free. The technology detects a user’s ear and captures photos to verify identity. Customizable preferences, like volume, ringtones and even buttons, will be automatically loaded on the device based on the user.

Why We’re Hooked: Though we know of fingerprint scanners, passcodes, and even facial recognition technologies that unlock phones, ear recognition has not been done before. We’re anxious to see if and how Amazon will use this technology in the future.