OgilvyOne Viewpoint #11 - Branded entertainment: What's old is news again

Doug Scott

As old as television itself, branded entertainment is undergoing a digital renaissance as it becomes an increasingly viable way to connect brands and consumers.

WHAT HAS COME TO BE called "branded entertainment," defined as brands integrating directly into entertainment or indeed creating original entertainment, is not a recent phenomenon. In fact, it goes back to the earliest days of radio in the 1920s.

Back then, traditional advertising was actually not allowed on air. Sponsors' names would appear in show titles (The Eveready Hour and The A&P Gypsies), and they would have to find inventive ways to use the content itself to promote their brands. The Clicquot Club Eskimos, for example, were a six-piece banjo group. They played a style of music called "sparkling" and dressed in Eskimo outfits to match the mascot for Clicquot Club Ginger Ale.