The Best Branded Content of the Week: November 17, 2012

Branded Content is rapidly changing forms. Sometimes it looks more like a traditional commercial, sometimes it doesn’t mention the name of the company or product at all. But no matter how it looks, branded content is inherently entertaining. This week, I have a few videos to share with you featuring cars and cameras.

Dodge Dart – The Onion Digital Studios 

The Onion has entered into the realm of branded content with their recent partnership with Dodge. Dodge is the sole advertiser on The Onion’s YouTube channel and now, advertising for the Dodge Dart is making it’s way into the video’s themselves. One video released this past week features the upcoming programming for “The Onion Digital Studios.” Parodying network television shows, the upcoming Onion season promises tantalizing reality programming like Pumpkin Growers andPretend Trucking. The Dodge Dart makes its appearance in the tease for Voight Hunters, a show about trying to get a look at Jon Voight. The “new” Dodge Dart is the perfect car to search for Voight because of its awesome safety features and vehicle technology.

Sony – DSLR Gear No Idea

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Sony Australia’s newest online campaign pokes fun at that clueless photography fanatic we all know: the person who has all the latest lenses and digital camera technology, but hasn’t a clue how to use any of it. The YouTube channel for DSLR Gear No Idea is filled with short videos about the various types of confused photographers, from the girl who uses a flash for everything to the guy that just can’t figure out his F-Stop settings. The videos are a great, fun way to advertise how easy it is to use the the new Sony NEX Camera.

BMW M6 – Making of an M Print 

This is one of the most unique advertising efforts I’ve seen in a while. Yes, it definitely feels more like a commercial than a piece of branded content should, but the idea behind it is definitely original. In this video, BMW shows how they used their car as a printing press to create direct mail pieces for their fans. I think this is a great way to advertise the features of the car, while also showing loyal customers and fans how much BMW cares about the quality of their promotional materials. One YouTube commentor described his experience with the direct mail as the equivalent of “a chick [sic] sending you a lipstick print of her kiss on a card.”

These three pieces represent very different approaches to branded content, but each is very entertaining in it’s own way. If you have a suggestion for another branded content campaign that you believe I should cover, please feel free to mention it in the comments!

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