Morning Update: Santa got Hacked; Alibaba buys South China Morning Post; Star Wars Ice Cream; Google on Augmented Reality

Creativity: Bah Humbug: Santa Gets Hacked in Norton Campaign

What happens when Santa goes online and plays games on an unauthorized website? He catches the Bah-Hum Bug virus and hackers hold the Naughty or Nice list for ransom. It’s coal for everyone this year — or is it?

Symantec Corp. has explored this story in a three-part web series called “Santa Got Hacked” for its Norton anti-virus software brand. The videos were created by Grey Advertising and directed by Slim Pictures’ Jim Headley. The total campaign budget was $575,000.

Mumbrella Asia: South China Morning Post sells to Alibaba, paywall to drop as title eyes global audience

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has acquired South China Morning Post, confirming reports a fortnight ago that billionaire owner Jack Ma was in talks to buy the 112 year-old Hong Kong English language newspaper.

The deal will help the Post fulfil long-held ambitions to be a global English-language window for the world into China, and to that end the newspaper is to scrap its 10 year-old paywall.

ample-hills-ice-creams-2-2015AdWeek: How a Mom-and-Pop Creamery in Brooklyn Became the Official Ice Cream of Star Wars

Brian Smith and his wife, Jackie Cuscuna, operate a two-parlor chain in Brooklyn called Ample Hills Creamery and sell pints of their homemade gourmet ice cream online.

Yet this family business is also now an official licensee of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” with two limited-edition ice cream flavors: The Dark Side and The Light Side, available for purchase exclusively online. Sold in reusable plastic pint containers, the two varieties are available in limited quantities only by mail over the next three months.

So how did a neighbourhood business hook up with a Hollywood studio marketing arm to become a product licensee for the most anticipated movie of the year?

AdAge: Star Wars Fans Spend More Than The Average Movie Goer

With a week left until “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” hits the theaters, there is some good news for all the brands with Star Wars tie-ins out there. A Nielsen survey shows that the franchise’s fans spends more money than the average moviegoer, and that returning cast members Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, and Mark Hamill have above-average endorsement potential.
Star Wars fans spend $4,300 annually in the personal care, food, auto and technology categories combined, $200 above the average, according to the survey. They are 17% more likely to be Generation X (35 to 44 years old) and to have children under 18. Their households are also 9% more likely to have $70,000 or more in annual income, according to Nielsen.

Campaign: Twitter’s Niche social talent agency launches first brand campaign with Doritos

Niche, the social media talent agency recently bought by Twitter, has launched its first campaign in the UK for Doritos, the crisps brand owned by PepsiCo.

In February Twitter acquired Niche, a startup that launched in 2013, for a reported $30 million. The agency connects advertisers with popular figures on social media.

The Doritos “#BoldAdvent” campaign sees the brand partner with Arron Crascall, a comedian and prankster well known with users of Vine, who shares his interpretation of what a ‘bold Christmas’ looks like.

The Guardian: ‘A lad is someone who has manners, who can be a hero’: meet the man behind the Lad Bible

On the ground floor of a converted warehouse in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, the leaders of the Lad Bible are showing me their film studio. “Next time you see this, it’ll be like Pinewood,” Mimi Turner, the company’s marketing director, says. “There’s going to be a green screen and everything,” adds 24-year-old CEO, Alexander Solomou, known universally as Solly.

“Did you see Amy?” he asks, referring to Asif Kapadia’s documentary about Amy Winehouse. “That was a great example of how you could create an amazing story without a multi-million-pound budget. That’s the kind of thing we want to be doing. There’s no reason we can’t be on Netflix or Amazon Prime.”

Techcrunch: What Google Sees In Augmented Reality

Reminder: Almost 90 per cent of the revenue of the company formerly known as Google — grandly rebranded Alphabet this fall, even if everyone, including me, is still going to call Google Google — comes from advertising.

Mountain View’s annual revenue is around $69 billion at this point. It makes almost all (89 per cent) of that money-mountain from ads. It might like you to think of it as an alphabetic spectrum of moonshot technology bets — whether that’s hacking death, accelerating life science research, building autonomous cars or making terrifying robots — but at base Google’s business is all about profiling people for ad delivery. So its business model is all about your eyeballs.


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