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Chipotle gears up for new “Farmed and Dangerous” campaign February 15, 2014

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Chipotle is notable among fast-food chains for not spending so much on advertising campaigns. But when it does, the ads go viral. Chipotle is experimenting with a new creative format for a campaign called “Farmed and Dangerous.” The campaign is a four-part comedy series that’s going to be available on Hulu. Chipotle’s brand will not be featured much in the spots, focusing instead on the comedy of industrial-scale farming. Actor Ray Wise stars in the 30 minute episodes.

According to Adam Cohen of The New York Times, the Chipotle campaign is interesting because it blends advertising and entertainment in a high-cost production. Moreover, Cohen added, the strategy preaches the gospel of sustainability rather than resorting to traditional ad techniques.

For a preview of the new ad campaign by Chipotle, watch the following video:

Discussion Questions:

1.  What is native advertising? How does “Farmed and Dangerous” qualify, if at all, as this new genre of advertising?

2.  How does the particular strategy used by Chipotle reach new audiences?

3.  Are there ethical concerns about this form of advertising?

Your body: The new frontier for advertising January 5, 2013

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New York’s famous “Naked Cowboy” who greets tourists in Times Square turned heads in December 2012 after announcing a deal with Wow Body Ads to become a human billboard. For now, the Cowboy will wear a Wow Body Ads logo on his chest and back. Don’t worry, though. The ink isn’t permanent, and should wash off after a month.

Body billboards aren’t exactly revolutionary in the field of advertising. Tattoo advertisements were commonly seen in the world of boxing after 2000, as performers sported ads on their backs, and many collected over six figures in their deals. The tattoo ads in boxing eventually ceased after the Nevada State Athletic Commission banned the practice with the support of several television networks. In attempting to bring body ads back to the world of sports, Wow Body Ads is trying to address the concerns of sports commissions, mainly by creating a system of revenue sharing so that more parties involved with a sporting might see profits coming from this unique practice.

For more on how tattoos – even of the permanent kind – have been used in advertising, see the following discussion from news show The Young Turks:

Discussion Questions:

1.  Why are body ads appealing to both performers and advertisers?

2.  Why might television networks and sporting associations have a problem with body ads?

3.  Are body ads bound to be more common in the years ahead? Why, or why not?