Nobody Puts OBJ in the Corner

The NFL may already be the center of focus during the Super Bowl, but that doesn’t stop them from joining the competition for the most memorable advertisement of the night.

If don’t watch the Giants play, you may be unaware that Odell Beckham Jr. has become fairly well-known for his touchdown celebrations. See the below highlight reel for reference:

In a commercial with the slogan “To All the Touchdown Celebrations to Come,”  Eli and Odell take on the epic 80’s classic Dirty Dancing. The two tackled the iconic choreography with near perfect accuracy. Although, admittedly, Odell’s moves are a little more polished than Eli’s, but that just adds to the charm of the ad.

The goal of the advertisement is to market for the upcoming season by highlighting the fact that, for most teams, the Super Bowl marks the beginning of a fresh start. For Eli and Odell, that means nailing the perfect touchdown celebration.

The ad is a mix of surprise, nostalgia, and humor, working in unison to secure its spot at the top of the numerous “Best Super Bowl Commercial” lists for weeks to come after the game–that’s free advertising. The cost to run an advertisement during the Super Bowl is worth it if the ad is successful. Not to mention the fact that several of the ads, including this one, go viral online before the game even airs.

How do you think they did?

-Katie Solinski

After 10 years of “Crashing the Super Bowl,” Doritos is Trying Something New.

In 2006, Doritos broke the mold of Super Bowl Advertising by putting consumers in control.

Frito-Lay’s “Crash the Super Bowl” ad campaign is probably one of the famous ad campaigns in Super Bowl history. Between 2006-2016, Frito-Lay ran an annual commercial contest, which encouraged fans to create commercials to be aired during the game. Finalists had the chance to have their content aired during the Super Bowl and winners received bonuses between $400,000 to $1,000,000.

Beginning before the Golden Age of consumer-generated content on platforms like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, Doritos’ approach was truly revolutionary. The “Crash the Super Bowl” campaign aired the first consumer-generated commercial on television called “Live the Flavor.”

Many credit the “Crash the Super Bowl” campaign for granting legitimacy to the amateur consumer-generated content that would come to drive marketing on social media platforms. During the time Doritos started their campaign, consumer-generated content was just starting to take root. As technology on the internet improved, it provided consumers with a platform on which to share their voice. Over the course of ten years, fans submitted roughly 36,000 submissions for the chance to be featured during the game. Dorito’s typically chose winners they believed would score high on the USA Today’s Ad Meter. Doritos ads frequently scored high in the Ad Meter’s rankings and consistently made the Top 10 in ACE Metrix’s rankings from 2010-2016.

Top 3 Rated ACE Metrix Doritos Ads

Sling Baby

Pug Attack

Man’s Best Friend

The rise of amateur digital content online ultimately contributed to Doritos decision to retire the campaign. In 2016, Doritos announced that it would end its annual “Crash the Super Bowl” contest. North American Frito-Lay Chief Marketing Officer Ram Krishnan explained in an interview with Ad Age that the campaign when the contest originally started it offered a stage for amateurs to be discovered for their work. Now, Gen Z is “not waiting to be discovered. They themselves are earning success by putting out their own YouTube channel and creating content for that. The role of the brand and the value that we add with this consumer has changed.”

After 10 years of running the “Crash the Super Bowl” campaign, Doritos took a hiatus for the 2017 Super Bowl game. Fans need not worry that the brand is gone for good from the game, though. Frito-Lay announced this year that Doritos would return to the Super Bowl in a combined ad with Mountain Dew in an effort to court Millenials and Gen Z. Although advertising two products in the same ad can be risky, Jennifer Saenz, chief marketing officer for Frito-Lay America, believes that it will work. “If you look at the purchase habits of consumers,” she said, referring to company research, “Doritos and Dew are purchased together in more of the same baskets than peanut butter and jelly.” The ad campaign features Morgan Freeman and Peter Dinklage in a face-off between Doritos Blaze and Mountain Dew Ice. See a sneak peek of the campaign:

What do you think about this new approach? Do you think it will be more effective than the consumer-generated “Crash the Super Bowl” campaign? What is your favorite Doritos commercial? Comment your answer below.

– K. Layne Smith

Marketing UNCW’s Midnite Madness & Fan Jam


Photo courtesy of the Association for Campus Entertainment.

In the past two years, UNCW’s Basketball program has grown in prominence and recognition, not only on our campus, but on the college basketball scene as a whole. As a former Spirit Chair for the Association for Campus Entertainment, I was beyond excited when the Men’s team started winning. One of the best ways to garner school spirit on a college campus is to give students something to root for. Events intended to boost that school spirit, like Midnite Madness and ACE’s Fan Jam, are not new to UNCW’s campus, but appear to be getting some new—and well deserved—recognition.


Some decked-out fans at Fan Jam. Photo courtesy of ACE.

This past Friday, ACE worked with the Residence Hall Association, Athletics Department, Campus Dining, and more to organize the event known as Fan Jam. The purpose of Fan Jam is to get UNCW fans excited about the upcoming basketball season, while rewarding them with free games, shirts, and food. It is a way to thank fans for supporting UNCW’s sports teams. In the past, this event occurred after Midnite Madness and ran late into the night. However, this year Maddie Driggers, the current Spirit Chair for ACE, moved the event to 8 p.m., meaning it would take place before Midnite Madness. As with all her events, Maddie was tasked with discovering fun and engaging marketing techniques to inform students about the event and its new time.

IMG_2792  Basketball cookies made by Campus Dining. Photo courtesy of ACE.

Aside from creating a flyer and posting the event details on social media, Maddie and her committee members tabled around campus. At their table, students could win Midnite Madness t-shirts by making a basket in a child-sized basketball hoop. This technique proved effective because curiosity drew a lot of people to the table. Additionally, the students were more engaged with the information because they were getting a reward. The Athletics Department also provided glowing foam sticks with “Seahawks” written on them. This giveaway helped market the event because they were conversation starters and looked amazing in photos.


The glowing rods in action at Midnite Madness. Photo from UNCW Athletics’s Facebook.

The foam rods can also be used a sporting events throughout the year and the photos can be used for promotional purposes for upcoming games. On the Tuesday before Midnite Madness, the Athletics Department hosted a Teal Tuesday event where they gave away more t-shirts and free food. They held other events during the week, like an ice cream social. At each of these events, Sammy was present to take photos with students and encourage them to participate.


Sammy at Fan Jam with students. Photo courtesy of the Association for Campus Entertainment.

Overall, the key marketing strategies used by ACE and the Athletics Department for these events were face-to-face interaction with their key public (the students) and freebies. Both groups were also consistent in their marketing in the week leading up to the big day, maximizing the amount of students who learned about the events. In the end, Fan Jam had an estimated 500 students attend the event, the majority of whom went to Midnite Madness directly after making the day quite the success.


By: Katie Solinski

Humans of COM Studies: Lauren Arsena


Photo courtesy of Lauren Arsena.

Lauren Arsena entered UNCW in the Fall of 2014. At the time, she knew she was interested in marketing, but was unsure which major would be the best fit for her. She quickly discovered COM and the potential the department had to teach her, not only marketing, but advertising, public relations, and more.

In terms of campus involvement, Lauren is the President of the Association for Campus Entertainment. ACE is the student-programming board at UNCW; they are responsible for a wide variety of events across campus, including the Jesse McCartney concert in Kenan Auditorium last Friday, September 22. Lauren was an integral part of the team that brought Jesse to campus, resulting in the fastest selling show in ACE’s history. The show sold out in less than 90 minutes.


September 22, 2017: Jesse McCartney at the concert on campus. Photo courtesy of Hayley Kane (ACE Photographer).

Lauren first decided to join ACE because she wanted to have a say in planning events for campus, while still having fun. Before becoming the president, Lauren was the Special Events Chair, now known as the Activities chair. She worked on a few of ACE’s traditional events like Last Seahawk Standing and Speed Dating. She created a few new events of her own as well, including Swing Dancing and Salsa Dancing lessons–both free for students. Last fall, she brought an improv group to campus for a Murder Mystery Dinner. Guests interacted with the characters to learn who the killer was.


Lauren (right) and the Spirit Committee Chair Maddie (left) outside of Lumina Theater before one of ACE’s films. Photo courtesy of Hayley Kane (ACE Photographer).

She has gotten the opportunity to apply a lot of the knowledge from her courses to her position in ACE and vice versa. Lauren states, “I’m on the PR/IMC track, so I’ve learned a lot about how to effectively market on social media. ACE also helps me in my classes because I have experience in event planning, leadership, teamwork, and public speaking.”

Along with ACE, Lauren works as a Calendar Assistant for Campus Life. She uses Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to create the calendars in the bathrooms of the Fisher Student Center and Union. Her experience with the Adobe Creative Cloud inspired her to add a Digital Arts minor.

Sep 11-16Sep 4-8

Two of Lauren’s recent calendars. Lately, she has been hiding a Pac-man ghost somewhere in the design. See if you can spot him! Photos courtesy of Lauren Arsena.

After graduation, Lauren would like to work in event planning for a few years. In the long term, she would like to return to school to work on a masters degree in Student Affairs. Her goal is to work with a student-programming board like ACE.


September 26, 2017: Lauren (far right) photographed here with Brandon Stanton (center), the creator of Humans of New York. Brandon’s work is the inspiration behind this post. Photo courtesy of Stefani Norris (right of Brandon).

“Interpersonal COM, public speaking, and PR have taught me how to market myself better to others so I feel more confident and ready to enter the workforce after I graduate.”

By: Katie Solinski

Humans of COM Studies: A Profile on Katie South

During your first couple years at UNCW, it can be difficult to get involved on campus outside of clubs and sports. College can seem overwhelming at first when trying to pick a major and get involved on campus that coincide with your career goals. Maybe you came to college not knowing what you were going to major in or had an idea of what your dream job was, but realized you were not cut out for it. What do you do then? Do you try a new field and try to gain job experience, or do you just give up? Katie South, a junior in the Communication Studies department, went through a similar situation during her first couple years at UNCW.

When Katie began her freshman year in the fall of 2015, she knew she wanted to be a Communication Studies major. “I always wanted to be a sideline reporter,” Katie said. “I soon realized that I didn’t know nearly enough about sports to do that, but the major is so versatile that I figured I would still be able to find something I’d enjoy.” She started working for the UNCW Campus Dining Peer-to-Peer sales team in the fall semester of her sophomore year; she, along with a team of other students in a variety of majors, tabled around campus to inform students about their meal plan options and take surveys that fit them with their best option. This job opened up opportunities for Katie that she never expected. “I thought it would be good experience for me to get more involved with campus and meet other students. The other job I had at the time took most of my free time, so I didn’t get involved with other school activities like I had wished. But working for the Peer-to-Peer sales team gave me that opportunity to meet new people while still earning money and gaining experience with sales and marketing.”

P2P pic

When taking the core COM classes, it may seem like you would never use some of those skills in a real profession. It can sometimes be difficult to see how your classes would pertain to a real job in the adult-world when sitting in lecture after lecture, but gaining experience in on-campus jobs can help you see the importance of these classes. Katie goes on to say that “being able to apply the communication skills I was learning with real students in real world situations gave me a new appreciation for what I was learning. I was able to build upon my interpersonal communication skills and pick up on students’ nonverbal cues that I may have previously overlooked had I not taken these classes.”

While Katie was just expecting to stay on the Peer-to-Peer team throughout college, a job opportunity with Auxiliary Services opened up that she couldn’t pass up. She got the position of marketing assistant about a month ago that allows her to work directly with the marketing specialist to “complete project research, develop promotional and informational materials, plan and attend public relations activities, among a variety of other activities.” Although she has only been in this position for a short time, it is something she is interested in staying in for a while. She has even started considering going to graduate school here and staying in her current position or finding a similar job within the marketing field. Katie has been able to use skills from COM classes such as 101, 200, 232, and 280 that she never thought she would use in a real-world setting, but now utilizes them every day at her new job.

Katie headshot.jpg

“My biggest piece of advice that I could give underclassmen is to not limit themselves. I had no desire to pursue marketing when I first started here at UNCW; I was determined to graduate and go straight into the news field. Once I opened myself up to the Peer-to-Peer sales team, I realized how much I loved working with people and being that line of communication when there’s confusion.” Katie shows us every day why being a student in the Communication Studies department is so rewarding and vital to succeeding in any job market. By embracing new ideas and gaining experience in various fields of work, you might be able to find your niche and succeed more than you ever thought possible.

“I’d like to buy the world a Coke”

In 1971 Coca-Cola launched one of its very first in-color TV commercials. It was named; “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” and has been called, “one of the best-loved and most influential ads in TV history”. It featured a multicultural cast with actors and actresses from over 20 countries singing together on a hilltop in Italy. All holding a cold bottle of coke in their hands.


The commercial has been called “groundbreaking” and was a part of the Coca-Cola campaign, “It’s the real thing”. The slogan, as well as the commercial was created by Bill Backer (creative director for the Coca-Cola account at McCann). The idea of the commercial came to Backer while in an airport on the way to London. He quickly wrote down the words, “I’d like to buy the world a Coke and keep it company” on a white napkin so that he would not forget it in the morning.


Backer got help from established song writers Roger Cook, Billy Davis and Roger Greenway to write the full song for the commercial. The song became such a hit it was recorded by the New Seekers, a British pop-band. It was so idolized that it was played on the radio as a full-on song.

The lyrics read;

 “I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony”
“I’d like to buy the world a Coke” 
“And keep it company”
“It’s the real thing—Coke is”
“What the world wants today”


The commercial has received praise throughout the years, and rightfully so. Davis truly captured the essence of Coca-Cola’s brand identity explaining that, Coke was more than a liquid refresher. Saying that, Coke is a “tiny bit of commonality between all people”.


The commercial gave hope to a multicultural world in where a bottle of Coke could be shared together amongst anyone in “perfect harmony”. The Coca-Cola bottle was used as a symbol of peace. By using a multicultural cast the commercial aimed for a world filled with greater acceptance and inclusion. Erasing divisions between people with different skin colors, ethnicities, and backgrounds.

The commercial first aired in 1971. The same year as the US voting age was lowered to 18, Disney World welcomed it’s first visitors, the Pentagon Papers were published, and National Public Radio broadcasted for the first time.


A lot of things were changing at this time. You could possibly argue that in a state of doubt and anti-Vietnam war attitudes, Coca-Cola was ahead of its time releasing this “feel good” commercial focused on friendship and happiness. And it might have been a slight nod against the war oversees.

Take a look at the commercial yourself! Why do you think this became such a hit? Why do you think it resonated with people?

P.S. If you watched Mad Men, the final scene of the show is followed by the Coca-Cola Hilltop commercial. Showcasing just how iconic it was and still is today.

– Olivia Nilsson

Who we are when we think no one is looking

First of all, I just want to say that if you want to stay living in a bubble thinking humans are unbiased beings that always have fair and good intentions, maybe you should not read this book…. or maybe you should!

Dataclysm, written by OkCupid co-founder and President Christian Rudder, dives into the deep world of internet data and how our personal data is used to “spy on us, hire and fire us, and sell us stuff we don’t need”. Dataclysm is a book right in its time, since we now spend most a lot of our lives online.


Rudder uses analytics to collect data that explains who we are, what we desire, and want. But also, what we hate, love and fear. He explains that our “true self” is shown when we think no one is looking, however someone always is. Because, the internet is nowhere to hide. If you are on the internet and you are online, you are oh so visible. Just a simple Facebook “Like” can reveal more than you think about a person. 

Rudder explains that Facebook knows if you brake up with a boyfriend/girlfriend, if you like Dominos, or if you moved to New York City. And sites like Google, knows if you need a new dress for a formal, if you are gay, angry, lonely, or even racist.  

This book is filled with fascinating statistics, and Rudder uses numerous graphs and charts to showcase his findings. This book is eye-opening and should be read by every millennial since our lives are so very deep centered around the internet and the information that we put there. Dataclysm is both a fun read as well as an important one. 

I truly recommend this book to anyone who uses the internet! – which is all of you. 

– Olivia Nilsson