5. April 2011
Every few months another article is written about how brands are the new record labels. They rehash the usual claims, brands have financial resources, brands have reach, brands can promote your music. The latest one of these articles is here. It sites the usual suspects, Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Red Bull and so on. Links us to a success story and off we go. The song remains generally the same.
I am not here to tell you that a brand association is a bad thing. On the contrary, association with the capital resources and media reach of a brand can be extraordinarily lucrative for both parties.
What I would like to do is state for the record that brands are not the new record labels. I think that is important to note. Artists should enter into these associations aware of both the potential upside as well as the risks.
Brands are brands. Pepsi is not in the record business. I think their stockholders would be loathe to ever hear that they are. Pepsi is in the beverage business. Mountain Dew’s ultimate goal is not to promote music. Mountain Dew’s ultimate goal is to sell Mountain Dew. The same goes for Red Bull, Bacardi and all of the others who are trying to create brand associations with music.
The goal of a record label is to try and run a financially successful business promoting artists and selling their wares. When you sign a record deal the label’s success is ultimately tied to your success. When you sign with a brand that is not necessarily the case.
Brands do not associate with music to sell music, they associate with music to sell more of their particular product. That is how success is gauged. If their audience and your audience align. If their consumers are also your consumers, or consumers that they would like to be their consumers, then your partnership may be successful. If the stars do not align in such a fashion, as they didn’t for one of the world’s largest advertisers when they made their foray into the record business, then the plug will be pulled. P&G spent millions launching TAG Records in 2008. When the music failed to move the needle on their merchandise, the business was silenced.
P&G’s music business like Pepsi’s and Mountain Dew’s was a carve out of their marketing arm. It was borne of the idea that music moves people in a visceral way. It creates an association with the consumer that more traditional marketing cannot. If the brand can capture some of that musical equity the brand image is enhanced. If not, the brand moves on.
By all means, if you have the opportunity to work with a brand, and the association seems like a good fit both financially and from a career perspective, sign the papers. There are passionate music fans operating in corporate America who would like nothing more than to launch a successful artist. They share that passion with a lot of their compatriots in the record business.
Just please keep in mind the one other thing that brands have in common with record labels, self interest. Ultimately the deal is not about the artist. The deal is about the corporation behind the artist. In case of conflict the brand will always trump the music. It has to. The empire was not built on music and ultimately the success or failure of music will not determine its future. The empire was built on laundry detergent and cell phones and automobiles. Those are the products the brand must sell in order to survive.
10. March 2010
A brown basketball with an X and O pattern and interlocking letters logo
So which one of these five items doesn’t belong. I think I had this question on my GRE.
Why would you display four generic items and one item clearly designed to conjure up a very specific third party brand. A litigious luxury goods company with a trademarked X and O pattern complete with interlocking letters. This just doesn’t make any sense. If you wanted to show the guys playing ball how about putting a diamond studded watch on one of their wrists. Did nobody catch this in the creative review. Was legal asleep at the switch. Surely a number of vignettes were presented to the client. Why pick this one? Why present this one at all.
The basketball is obviously designed to conjure up images of LouisVuitton. Would the same basketball with a black and white checkered pattern symbolize luxury. Clearly not. Why. Because there is no luxury brand with a “famous and incontestable” black and white checkered pattern adorning all of their accessories. This just seems like a situation that could have been avoided.
Unless of course Hyundai saw this coming and decided to operate under the guise of “any press is good press”. This may be true, unless of course you lose.
22. February 2010
Hi, my name is Tiger Woods. You may have heard of me. Over the past few months, well, years actually, I’ve made a few mistakes. I’ve slept with porn stars and socialites and women who work at Perkins. I’ve lied to my family, friends, fans and sponsors, and been an all around heel off of the golf course. On the links I’ve been my usual awesome self. Some of you can separate these two aspects of my personality. Some of you cannot. For those of you who cannot, I am truly sorry that I got caught and disappointed you. I will try to be a better person. A better husband and father. I will always be the same awesome golfer you have come to love and support, I will just be doing it with less sponsors. This is unfortunate since the income I receive from my sponsors funds my charitable works, while the income I earn from golf pays for the fuel for my yacht. You may have heard of it, it’s called “THE LEAVE ME THE F#$@ ALONE”.
But enough about me. Today I am here to talk about my newest sponsor, Toyota. It’s always nice to have an automotive sponsor. Like Buick, they have a fair amount of marketing dollars to toss around. Unlike Buick, people under the age of eighty actually use their product. Although less people drive them today than in the past. Why. Because Toyota, like me, has made some mistakes. My mistakes have not killed anybody, but like me, Toyota was at the top of their game, the best at what they do, when they lost track of what really matters. Not getting caught.
As I noted in my press conference on Friday, when you get caught you have to apologize. And when you have to apologize you are admitting that you have made mistakes, and that you may not be as awesome as you once thought you were. My newest sponsor Toyota thought they were awesome until their cars began driving at high speeds all by themselves. I am still awesome on the golf course but not so much in my personal life. And as a public figure my personal life is clearly no longer personal, which means it is in fact public. A lot of this may have something to do with Buddhism, but I can’t be sure.
The bottom line is this, whereas I once thought Buicks were the cars to drive, I no longer think so. I now recommend Toyotas. I actually cannot recommend them enough. As a matter of fact, my contract stipulates that I recommend them all of the time. They get excellent gas mileage, they’re roomy, a little bland when it comes to styling, and if they don’t run themselves into a busy intersection they may last a long, long time. This means they have value. And isn’t that what’s important today. Value. And Values. Family values. That’s what’s important to me. Family values. I’m a family man. And Toyota”s cars are all about keeping your family safe.
In closing, both myself and Toyota pledge to do better in the future. We will be better citizens. We will be the brands that you thought you knew but didn’t, because we hid stuff. In short, we will work hard to once again earn your trust and support, because getting caught really, really sucks.
And God bless the United States of America
29. August 2009
In early September the Mountain Dew Green Label Art series will return for part III. The third series will feature contemporary artists Pushead, Nathan Cabrera, Jeff McMillan, Stephen Bliss, UPSO and Claw Money.
…there’s really no connection between any of the six designs and Mountain Dew. Maybe the artists should have tasted the soda before setting up their easels.
I disagree. The images are all very cool and any one of them could be translated to a skateboard, surfboard or snowboard. Which I suspect is the point of this exercise. The images may not connect to Mountain Dew the electric green drink in a bottle. But they do connect to the consumer of Mountain Dew. The viewer of the X Games and the player of the XBox.
These bottles are not here to make a statement about Mountain Dew. They are here to make a statement about the kid holding the bottle or putting it on a shelf in his dorm room. They are not about the taste of the drink but the taste of the purchaser of the drink.
Even if you don’t like Mountain Dew you might buy a few just to have them sitting around. Nothing says late night conversation piece better than a silver bottle covered in green eyes or a couple of angry monkeys.
25. August 2009
Alice Cooper tries to convince you to trade in your old TV for a credit towards a new Sony BRAVIA. Apparently this is better than throwing your old set out the window…which is something that Cooper did a lot in the 80s, or something like that.
Oh yeah, and the Alice Cooper track “Poison” is played at the end of the ad, which doesn’t really have much to do with anything…except Alice Cooper, but not Sony TVs, which is what the spot is supposedly about…
There just has to be a better way…
23. July 2009
I understand that we live in a digital world. I understand that any creation which can be turned into a digital file can then be duplicated without any change to the original file. I understand that the new file can then be flung out into the digital ether for all to access, download, upload, enjoy, disparage, mix, mash, change, love and hate…all for nearly no cost. I understand all of these things and this post is about none of these things.
My simple question is this, when did it become okay to call yourself a fan of a band and to then decide that it was permissible to steal the one thing that makes a band a band, their music. Because a concert T-shirt does not make a band a band. Nor does a club date or a stadium tour make a band a band. Nor does a record contract or having a manager or a lawyer or a booking agent. Nor does selling merchandise or exclusive video content on a website make a band a band.
It is the music that makes a band.
So when did it become okay to call yourself a fan of a band and then to take that band’s music without any recompense to the band.
To say, thank you for creating this wonderful art, a talent that I do not possess. Thank you for writing it and recording it and sharing it with the world, with your fans, to enjoy. Thank you for making me feel happy or sad, nostalgic or hopeful, amped up or mellow. Thank you for creating a song that sees me through the hard times and helps me celebrate the good. Thank you for taking the time and having the heart. Thank you for putting in the hours and making the sacrifices to do something that I cannot do. Thank you for all of those things.
I will now take your art for myself and I will in turn give you nothing for it. I will not compensate you. I will call myself a fan. I will listen to and enjoy your work. I will hope and expect that you will continue to write and record and release your art into the world but I will not compensate you for it in order to help you succeed. I am paid to do my job but I will not pay you to do yours. But thank you. I am your biggest fan.
I realize this is the new reality. But to call yourself a fan and to then steal from the band, simply because you can. Simply because the technology exists to do so. No. That doesn’t make you a fan. That makes you something else entirely. A fan does not participate in the band’s demise. A fan revels and supports their success.
A lot of people like to say bands shouldn’t sue their fans. That is true. They shouldn’t. But if you are stealing from the band are you really a fan?
20. July 2009
I am happy to announce that I recently completed licensing Ray LaMontagne’s “Trouble” for the above Traveler’s Insurance ad.
The spot is called “Prized Possession”.
19. May 2009
According to Variety:
In Italy, piracy knows no charity.
In the wake of the recent earthquake, 56 popular local artists and musicians recorded a six-minute song to raise reconstruction funds. The uplifting collaboration, titled “Domani 21/4/09,” features turns by top-selling Italo pop performers Jovanotti, Ligabue, Zucchero and Elisa, among others. The song was distributed online for e2 ($2.70) per download, before going out to record stores for e5.
But filesharing sites put a damper on the fund-raising, registering more than two million illegal downloads of the track.
“I feel frustrated and dismayed,” lamented prominent Italo music industryite Caterina Caselli, who produced the song for free with Universal Music. “This time (the pirates) aren’t going against the interests of the hated music majors, but against tens of thousands of citizens who have to start from scratch after having lost everything.”
I’d like to hear from the defenders of file sharing. Of “free” music. Of giving away Mp3s as a loss leader in order to upsell other merchandise. I’d like to hear from those people who say “don’t sue your fans. They’re not doing anything wrong.” I’d like to hear how this situation is all okay. How nobody is getting hurt. How the people who won’t even pony up $2.70 to help others rebuild their lives are all good people.
Is this how fans support there favorite artists? By taking without giving anything back. There is no upsell here. There is no tour or t-shirt or premium behind the scenes footage on some website. There is no attack on a record label that you feel robbed you of your hard earned dollars.
There are artists who donated their time and their talent to try and help out people in need. And there are people who took that work without donating a dime. They took it simply because they wanted it and because they could. And because they are to selfish to care. There is very little middle ground when you steal from a charity.
It’s unfortunate that it’s come to this. Not surprising. Just unfortunate.
29. April 2009
Iggy Pop’s Swiftcover.com ad campaign has been banned after Britain’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) “concluded the ad was misleading”.
In the ad Pop declares “I got it Swiftcovered. I got insurance on my insurance”. Nice sentiment. But it turns out Swiftcover.com will not cover entertainers. So no Iggy, you don’t have insurance on your insurance.
So much for Swiftcover.com marketing director Tina Shortle’s specious argument that “Swiftcover.com chose Iggy Pop as the face of its advertising because he loves life, not because he is a musician. He is an actor demonstrating the benefits of swiftcover.com.” Umm…not exactly. He is a musician telling the world that he has Swiftcover insurance.
My guess is Pop gets to keep his money since this error clearly falls on the Swiftcover.com marketing team. If you are going to hire an endorser who cannot actually use your product at least have the good sense not to boldly proclaim to the world that they are using your product.
And where were the attorney’s on this one? Didn’t anybody see a conflict between the products and services actually offered by Swiftcover.com, Pop’s contract and the ad copy? Sounds like a lot of costly rookie mistakes.
I hope Swiftcover.com had insurance on Pop’s contract.
23. April 2009
If only it were this easy. If only a bank could execute a music license and have “Instant Karma”. Unfortunately, it is not this easy. Californians should know. They are suffering under one the highest foreclosure rates in the country. It would be nice if they were all swimming in beautiful lap pools, surfing, taking trips in hot air balloons and hitting the desert pavement on their Harleys. Yes sir, that would be nice. And there was most certainly a time when this ad would have worked. When people weren’t worried about their jobs, their pensions, their next mortgage payment.
Kudos to Chase for trying to put on a happy face during the worst financial meltdown since the great depression. A financial meltdown that they helped to create. But sorry. It’s just not that simple. The sky is not blue. Not yet anyway. And this ad does not tell us how it is going to someday be blue again. Or how Chase will help us get there. Or why we should trust them to do so. Trust what they have to say.
Hope is great. A better tomorrow is great. We all want that. No doubt every person working in the financial services sector wants that. But that is not the reality we are currently living.
For years banks such as Chase set up a false reality. A world where everybody and anybody could own a home and benefit from skyrocketing property value. But that was not real. And now Chase is trying to do it again. To take a shortcut to happiness without putting in the hard work.
It’s a nice idea…but like I said, you can’t purchase “Instant Karma”…you have to earn it.
22. April 2009
I want to meet the person at BBDO who sold this to Gillette. Seriously. I do. Because if they can sell this, they can sell anything. They can sell peace to the middle east. They can sell a pro choice candidate to the religious right. They can sell newspapers in a digital world.
Clearly BBDO is out of ideas as to how to use Gillette’s three athletic endorsers. Three of the highest paid athletes in their sports who are no doubt costing Gillette a pretty penny. And when BBDO runs out of ideas…they license. They throw famous people at you…and licensed music, and an homage to Saturday Night Fever and they hope you’ll forget that this is supposed to be an ad for Gillette Fusion and think it’s something else. Maybe something from SNL or Funny or Die or even Life on Mars. Anything but what it’s supposed to be. Because it’s supposed to be an ad, which is the one thing it is clearly not.
15. April 2009
Remember, not all memorable music needs to be licensed. Honda’s recent launch spot for their Insight hybrid uses a new arrangement of the Harry D. Loes composition “Let It Shine”. While the composition is in the public domain the recording is new, which means it is subject to copyright. The new arrangement by Berend Dubbe and Gwen Thomas has most certainly been registered with the copyright office as well.
That being said, Honda no doubt saved a considerable amount of licensing dollars by putting their money into the new arrangement and recording, while avoiding a licensing deal for the original composition.
13. April 2009
Would you buy champagne from this woman? Moet & Chandon is betting you will.
A-list film celebrities choose their endorsements carefully. For on-camera work, as opposed to voice-over opportunities, they lean almost exclusively towards so called luxury items (ranging from Rolex to Armani) and cosmetics.
Print advertising is preferred, although the cosmetics giants obviously push TV, and the talent will always request to work with the top photographers in fashion and advertising. Approval over the photographer will almost always be requested and granted. In this case the photographers of Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott certainly fit the bill.
So pop a cork and make a toast. Champagne has now taken its place at the A-list endorsement table alongside Louis Vuitton and Estee Lauder. Somewhere a model is weeping.
7. April 2009
As a Mets fan I wanted to like this latest Under Armour ad featuring Jose Reyes. Especially since not long ago I had some kind things to say about a Dick’s Sporting Goods/Nike ad starring arch enemy Jimmy Rollins.
Unfortunately, it just doesn’t feel right. If Nike is the varsity team of sports marketing this spot feels very JV.
The fact that UA felt the need to ID Reyes is the first problem. If you are a fan of baseball you know Reyes, even out of uniform. If you are not a fan, putting his name on the screen is not going to mean anything so why bother. It’s just a distraction.
Secondly, labeling Reyes as New York Shortstop because UA could either not afford, or could not clear, the name New York Mets makes things even worse. New York Shortstop? Yankees? Mets? New York City? New York State? Is he on the Brooklyn Cyclones? The Binghamton Mets? Again, if you don’t know him…New York Shortstop is not going to help.
Thirdly, who is the pitcher? He is clearly not a major league player. It doesn’t seem like a real challenge for Reyes, one of the sport’s premier base stealers, to grab two bags off of either an actor or a minor league pitcher. Or a minor league pitcher with a SAG card. Where’s the drama in that. Same goes for the catcher.
According to Shilo creative Noah Conopask:
We wanted it to feel like a battle, where Jose and the pitcher both had their fingers on the trigger. We wanted you to see it in their eyes, in their body language, and we wanted to subtract everything out of the world they were in, no bleachers, no fans, no scoreboard, only the moment…
This brings us to our fourth point. The spot feels too sterile. As if it were shot on a sound stage. Baseball is all about the fans. All sports are. I understand that Reyes and our generic pitcher and catcher will zone everything out when they are in the moment. It’s just that the vehicle of bringing the house lights down feels very theatrical, not very athletic.
Finally, as with the lighting, the music also feels a little more theatrical/orchestral than emotional/athletic. Where’s the adrenaline. Where’s the sweat and the training and the skill. Where’s the big finish. If Reyes was about to pull off a two base steal the crowd would be going crazy. This doesn’t feel like going crazy, adrenaline pumping in a stadium full of people music. It feels like the final scene before intermission of Wicked.
Overall, I just don’t think this works. If you are going to play with the Nikes of the world you need to bring your A game. This feels like a minor league B.
3. April 2009
In the words of Adfreak:
When I saw this new ad featuring a nearly unrecognizable Lindsay Lohan, I assumed it was one of those “Only being shown in Japan” things. Then I remembered that those lucrative Asian ad deals are only for actors who are still famous and somewhat respectable. This is just some straight-up “Will work for food” badness.
The only comment I would add is that the good folks at Adfreak are not the target for this campaign. Nor am I. But the target is out there.
For some odd reason people pay attention to Lindsay Lohan. They pay attention enough for her to constantly be mentioned in all manner of celebrity magazines, blogs, Twitter feeds and social networking sites. Granted, these mentions are rarely flattering, but they are ubiquitous. And ubiquity, sans talent or respectability, still equals fame in the new media world.
Yup, she’s a train wreck. And American’s love their train wrecks. But sometimes Europeans love our train wrecks even more than we do. So who knows, maybe the same people who buy Lindsay’s Glimmer Leggings will now shop Fornarina.
If the endorsement fits, wear it.
1. April 2009
I have a proposal. I would like to propose that every man and woman old enough to drive head out to their local auto dealership this week and take home a car. Don’t pay for it. Just find one you like, there are all kinds and types out there, and take it. If after driving it around for awhile you find it makes you happy, and you would like to share it with your friends, go back and steal one for them as well. Don’t worry. They have lots of them. And they can always make more. Identical ones as a matter of fact.
Sure, they’ll come after us. Some of us they’ll find. Some of us they won’t. Some of us they’ll even wrongly accuse. But don’t stop. Keep doing it. We’ll protect you. We’ll write articles and blog posts about how it’s a bad business model for auto dealers to prosecute their customers (of course by stealing their product we are not really their customers, although we are their fans. We like their product. We just don’t want to pay for it.) But we’ll yell louder than they will, so nobody will be able to make that point.
When they tell us they can’t afford to continue making cars if we continue to steal them we’ll tell them that they need to keep making cars, because we like them, and we want to keep taking them, even if they can’t afford to eat and pay their bills. But that doesn’t matter…because we want cars. We don’t make our living from selling cars, but so what, there are more of us than there are of them…so we are right.
But we are not greedy, no sir, and we appreciate their point. Everybody deserves to have a roof over their head, to have health insurance, so we’ll suggest that they come up with other ways to monetize their cars. We’ll even tell them what some of those ways should be. Perhaps they should sell us upgrades and premiums. New stereo systems and wheels. New shocks and mufflers. They can even make money on maintenance. Give us the cars. Build a following for your brand. Collect email addresses. Make money elsewhere.
Then, when nobody is paying attention, when our constant rhetoric has lulled them into a stupor, we’ll stop using the word steal and we’ll start using the word free. It’s the new economy of free. The new business model of free. Free, free, free. We’ll tell them that free is here and it can’t be stopped, so they better get used to it and move on. Then we won’t be thieves anymore, stealing the sweat equity of another human being who has the talent to create something that we cannot, but that we want to enjoy for no cost. We will simply be consumers. Consumers of free.
Finally, because why wouldn’t we do this, we’ll start stealing the new stereos and wheels and all of the premiums. We’ll start the process all over again. Because why should we have to pay for what we want. We shouldn’t. And we won’t. We’re better than that. They should be happy we want their products at all. They should be happy we’re willing to take their free products in the first place.
And just to show them the superiority of our new business model, we’ll apply it to other businesses. To computers. To cellphones. To furniture and flat panel TVs.
This will be great. You’ll see. I’m sort of surprised nobody ever thought of this before. It is after all the new model. And it’s free.
30. March 2009
Gnarls Barkley’s “Run” has the right energy for this spot, and it seems to fit, so long as you don’t listen too closely to the lyrics.
Nike begins the spot with the third verse:
Yeah I’m on the run
See where I’m coming from
When you see me coming run
Before you see what I’m running from
No time for question asking time is passing by
Here is the first verse:
Yeah its still the same
Can’t you feel the pain
When the needle hits the vein
Ain’t nothing like the real thing
I’ve seen it once before
And oh it’s something else
Some people think the song is about drugs, some about pedophilia, others about music (the “needle hits the vein” being the needle of a turntable hitting the vein/groove of a vinyl LP). Music would be good. Drugs and pedophilia, not so much.
Sometimes an effective music license has as much to do with what you don’t use from a particular recording as it does with what you do use. In this case, Nike parsed “Run” carefully so as to avoid any potential PR headaches from a consumer who might have a negative interpretation of the lyrics. By beginning with the third verse the song becomes more about the action of running than the idea of what you are running from.
27. March 2009
Wouldn’t it make sense for EMI Music Publishing, representative of 1.3 million musical compositions, to represent all printed materials of Dr. Martin Luther King in all media. Wouldn’t that make sense? They are, after all, a publisher.
Yet that’s not the “groundbreaking” relationship that was announced last week.
According to the press release, Intellectual Properties Management (“IPM”), the Atlanta based company which manages the licensing program for The King Estate (and which doesn’t have a website, so much as a fax and email on a Terms of Service page):
will continue to administrate and process all requests for use of Dr. King’s name, image, likeness, recorded voice (without music) and rights of publicity.
EMI Publishing is:
charged with representing Dr. King’s words in recordings and music, as well as in ensuring the proper licensing and authorization of all usages of Dr King’s words and image in online and in all digital media.
As somebody involved in the business of clearing images and words, this doesn’t seem to have simplified the process. A few questions:
My guess is that EMI would have preferred to represent all of the King intellectual property in all media, but that due to prior contractual obligations, or a hesitancy on the part of the King estate, that was not possible. So they settled for digital rights. Sort of a test balloon to see what they can make of it.
That’s unfortunate, as EMI no doubt has the resources and infrastructure to pitch and monetize the name, image, likeness and intellectual property of people like Martin Luther King. It would have been interesting to see what sort of ROI they would have been able to generate on such a property. The CMGs of the world could also use a little competition.
From a licensees perspective, I feel like the process of trying to license Dr. King’s words and images has just become more complicated, when it could have been less. This is sort of like going to your local BMW dealer to buy a new car, only to find out that your new car has no wheels or engine. For that you need to head to Atlanta.
26. March 2009
These “behind the scenes” videos seem to be cropping up quite a bit lately. This one actually appears to be less rehearsed than most, with the exception of the obligatory interview. It’s clearly been polished up in post production, as opposed to the Ashton Kutcher shot video of Demi Moore I commented on last week.
The video is a little long for me but it does everything it needs to do. It showcases the game, Rhythm Heaven, the endorser, the endorser’s relationship and interaction with the game, as well her nephew’s obvious fascination with all things DS. A game about rhythm also keeps Beyonce in the context of who she is as an artist.
I am not sure if the entire DS celebrity campaign is an effective or necessary strategy, the Lisa Kudrow spot currently on air is pretty mundane, but this online use of Beyonce will no doubt work well for her, her fans and of course the people paying the bills, Nintendo and the Nintendo DS.
25. March 2009
NASA recently made the mistake of running an online contest to rename room “Node 3″ of the international space station. The government organization presented the public with four pre-approved names while allowing them to write-in an alternate choice. Bad call. At least from NASA’s perspective. Great call by Stephen Colbert. He rallied his troops and managed 230,539 votes for, what else, “Colbert”. This is more than 40,000 votes over the second place NASA approved “Serenity”.
Of course, NASA reserves the right to choose an appropriate name. Which we all know will not be Colbert. But which will give Colbert weeks and weeks of material. And dollars and dollars of free press.
So where were the brands? Where was Burger King or GIECO or Pepsi? Where was a quickly executed online viral campaign to try and counter Colbert. The Burger King room? The GIECO room? I always feel like somebody’s watching me…from space!
Not only would a successfully executed naming campaign have generated mountains of press during the voting process, but you would have had the opportunity to continue to push your brand up until NASA announces its final decision in April. And then, when NASA does pick a name like Serenity, because you know they will never pick a brand or a TV personality, your campaign could continue to march forward on the issue of how a government elected by the people, for the people once again did not listen to the people.
The largest billboard in the world was up for grabs and the only brand who made a play was Stephen Colbert.