For the first time in two years, following his arrest for alleged rape, Kobe Bryant will appear in ads for Nike which will appear in Sports Illustrated. "There is no change in Kobe Bryant's contractual status with Nike. Kobe's inclusion in promotional material for the Huarache 2K5 footwear product is consistent with such Nike endorsement agreements. Nike agrees with most NBA observers that Kobe ranks among the very best players in the NBA, and his training and preparation are key elements of his game," said Nike spokesman Rodney Knox.
AdPulp points to a Nike/Maria Sharapova brand rip off that could only come from sexually repressed Japan. A company called Sharanpowan is selling pillows shaped like the breasts and lap of the famous tennis starlet. We suppose playing with Sharapova's pillows is better than copping a feel in public to take care of sexual urges but this, one has to admit, it just weird.
Doing a search on Google, one might conclude the GAP should have chosen Michelle Williams, the Dawson's Creek star instead of Michelle Williams, the Destiny's Child singer for their new spokesmodel. While the GAP has acknowledged its intentions to use several celebs in succession for its ad campaigns, after just a few months of Joss Stone, one might conclude the GAP is suffering a seriously fickle case of ADD.
Kazaa is displeased with how it's been portrayed in the media surrounding Claria's termination of an agreement between the two parties. While the split has widely been attributed to Claria's ongoing mission to "clean up its act" leading many to interpret Kazaa might have, in some way, tarnished the Claria brand.
Kazaa, in a press release, claims the real reason for the split "followed ongoing issues between the parties relating to Claria's lack of performance of its obligations under the agreement and steps Sharman (Kazaa parent company) had already taken to investigate and rectify that performance."
Kazaa further claims, "Claria's announcement is contrary to its obligations under the agreement. At present, Sharman continues to perform its obligations whilst pursuing its options under the Agreement."
Lee Iacocca, who uttered Chrysler's tagline, "If you can find a better car, buy it," in 61 commercials during his reign as turnaround CEO for the troubled car company, is returning as pitchman in a set of new commercials. The deal calls for Iacocca to appear, initially, in three spots with compensation in the form of a Chrysler donation to Iacocca's diabetes research foundation along with $1 for every Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep sold for the rest of the year.
Extending its brand further into people's lives, Disney, using the Sprint network, will launch Disney Mobile, a cell phone service targeted t families with kids 11 to 14. Besides phone service, Disney Mobile will offer Disney-related content including ring tones based on familiar Disney songs, Disney branded phones, games and images. The service is set to launch in 2006.
The proliferation of ad creep has made it far too easy for institutions in need of money to turn to marketers for relief. Naming building and stadiums was once taboo. Now, it's odd if a sports arena is not named after a marketer. A school in New Jersey sold the naming rights to its gymnasium to local grocery store Shop-Rite and now an elementary school in suburban Detroit is considering courting marketers to name its new school.
Yet another California Native American casino has opened in the Southern California area. While we know a lot of morons go to casinos believing they will leave rich, the Morongo casino seems to be openly welcoming these people in both spirit and in name.
While this one isn't as blatant, another fast food marketers seems to want people to fornicate with its products. First, McDonald's ran a banner campaign with the headline "I'd Hit it." Now, Andrew Teman points to a Wendy's ad for its Chicken Sandwich which contains the headline "Do a Spicy Chicken Sandwich. Now, we all know there's an association between food and sex but we're not quite sure fast food falls into the category of mood-altering quisine.
You've seen the ads. Images of fresh-faced, yet been there, girls of questionable age posing seductively to sell clothes. It's always been American Apparel's approach to advertising. Gritty, un-retouched, almost slutty imagery but acceptable enough because it looks like pictures a guy might have taken of his girlfriend while fooling around in bed. Writing in the San Fransisco Chronicle, Mark Morford claims American Apparel has gone "pro" hiring AVN porn star Lauren Phoenix. Not that this is actually news with Fleshbot having published this almost a month ago but we thought you'd like to know. Thanks Barry.