In the past month or so, we've seen some food and drink brands doing some interesting things with branded music and video content. Here's a round-up...
On 10 October, Mexican grill chain Chipotle
, a short film directed by David Altobelli
and soundtracked by Karen O
of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, who covers Willie Nelson's
'Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys'. The commission comes direct from The Chipotle Cultivate Foundation
, an organisation set up by Chipotle with the aim of creating 'a sustainable, healthful and equitable food future'. Abandoned is specifically designed to raise awareness of the hardships faced by family farmers owing to the industrialisation of American agriculture. The film depicts some young farming boys visiting an abandoned farm, and slowly realising it could foreshadow the future for their own families.
Abandoned follows hot on the heels of another Chipotle production, Back to the Start
, a beautiful animation in praise of sustainable farming created by film-maker Johnny Kelly, and set to a version of Coldplay's
'The Scientist' performed by Nelson (available on iTunes, with cover artwork taken from the video). Released in August, that video has had 1.9 million
YouTube views to date. In just two weeks, Abandoned has picked up over 60,000
. The brand worked with talent management company CAA, New York
for both campaigns.
Another brand to adopt a reinvented classic song was Carling
, who used Alice Gold's
cover of Billy Fury's
1960s track 'Wondrous Place
' for a TV spot created by award winning music video director Walter Stern
. The song is available to buy on iTunes (without a Carling tie-in), and Carling has put the 60-second ad up on YouTube - although a separate video has been posted by another user with the full version. The beer brand's more traditional approach to music/video makes for an interesting contrast with Chipotle - who, by producing the definitive full-length video for each song (and featuring directly in the iTunes artwork), has managed to put its own stamp on the song in a far more integrated way.
Yet another approach to branded music was taken earlier in the month by yoghurt brand Yeo Valley
, who teamed up with BBH, London
to create The Churned
: a spoof boy band made up of four farmers. Their debut single, 'Forever
' is available on iTunes for 79p. The accompanying music video shows the quartet singing soulfully in England's green and pleasant pastures, and after a full length version aired during the first break of X-Factor
, has since hit 380,000
YouTube views in just over three weeks. Remarkably the publicity catapulted the foursome into the top 70 of the UK charts, landing at number 33 in the iTunes chart.
A cut down of the video will feature in subsequent ad breaks during X-Factor's run (a very smart media tie-in), and the ad encourages viewers to log onto Facebook to try singing in tune with the song themselves. The winning singer will feature in a 30 second version of the song that will air as an ad during the final of X-Factor. The song follows on from the success of the Yeo Valley rappers last year, whose video secured 1.8 million views - and chart success.
These stories originally appeared on Contagious Feed. Contagious Feed is our bespoke trends, inspiration, insight and analysis service, providing daily innovative marketing intelligence across a comprehensive range of sectors to brands and agencies across the world. For more information about Contagious Feed contact