Religous Anxiety

On the first day of class I was confronted with the harsh realization that I do not have any Muslim friends. I have had several interactions with Muslims at Loyola and they have always been good ones. My RA from sophomore year was Muslim and even though I’ve forgotten her name I always think fondly of her and wave hello whenever I see her on campus.

Seeing as I don’t have any Muslim friends I wasn’t sure how to go about finding someone to interview. The day before the assignment was due I still hadn’t found anybody. I had seen several girls with Hijabs and thought about asking them, but something stopped. I was afraid to ask about their religion. I am a Catholic, a fairly common religious identification. I never feel threatened or accosted when someone asks me about my religion but that is not the case for everyone. When people are persecuted for their religious beliefs religion becomes a a taboo subject. I didn’t want to give anyone the impression that I was bigoted or hateful. I was afraid that by asking a Muslim if he or she identified as a Muslim they would believe I was asking out of malicious intent. To mark my target, so to speak. There is something very wrong with that.

Lego Empowers Girls

Lego recently released an advertisement that attempted to empower girls. Often Lego is associated with boys and building cars, trucks, or other “male” toys. Emerging companies are beginning to rival Lego’s idea of building blocks so they needed to come up with a counter advertisement. This one outlines the life of a strong girl who defends her decisions and uses Lego to explore her imagination. There is no gender specified Lego product, so they continue to aim their ads at young girls as well as young boys. Nerf guns are also doing the same thing, however they call their guns and arrows the Rebelle brand which is controversial sometimes.

Regardless, Lego is working to end gender stereotypes through their advertisements and products that market to both genders.

They also created a social media campaign with the hashtag #keepbuilding. It’s empowering and effective. Hopefully Lego continues this trend and other toy companies follow suit.

An Apple Holiday

Apple’s holiday ad released over the weekend, “The Song” has already been viewed and scrutinized by the public.  The video, both dynamically shot and creatively thought through will appeal to the viewer’s emotions without a doubt.

Apple has become a leader in the industry and with last year’s holiday commercial, the public had high expectations for the company’s clip.  The idea for the commercial was simple, as it combined generations together with the use of technology.  It was tasteful; Apple did not overload their product throughout the clip.  In fact, they only showed an Apple product once in the 90 seconds that it took to play out.  Instead, they focused their energy on the storyline and the story behind the product.  The choice in placing the emphasis less on the product and more on the plotline promotes Apple’s people-oriented lifestyle and dedication to their customers, which is interesting considering the overall customer satisfaction has greatly decreased as of late.

Placing a commercial out without heavily promoting a product can be risky because the intended message, to shop with said company, is not always reached to the audience.  I really like this advertisement however, as it serves as more of a holiday greeting than promotional ad.  Because Apple is such a powerhouse company, the average consumer is aware with not only the brand name, but the products that it supplies.  This makes it possible for the company to advertise in this way.  Simply telling their audience “Happy Holidays” does not necessarily promote a product, but encourages the viewer to believe that they are cared for by Apple.  This creates a brand identity that consumers gravitate towards.

I think the advertisement is great.  I think it appeals to all generations and is done so in a tasteful and professional way that would be expected from Apple followers.  It really proves that words and flashy products are not necessary to make a successful advertisement.  Do you agree?

The Interview: Comedy or Act of War?

Seth Rogan and Sony Pictures have pushed the envelope when it comes to film production, as their latest movie to be released will not only depict the assassination of a world leader, but will center its theme around an actual leader, Kim Jong-un of North Korea.

Never before has this sort of geopolitical action been taken in the film industry, and Sony executives realized this risk going into production; as the leader of North Korea is alive and well.  Turns out the leader does not share the same comedic taste as Seth Rogan and other producers, as he not only disapproves, but has labeled the film “an act of war” and branded some of those involved with its production as terrorists.

The $40 million film that will be released on Christmas day has stirred up emotions between the nuclear-armed country and those it surrounds as well as the United States.  Sony’s Japanese chief executive has intervened with production of the film in efforts to relieve some of the tensions built up over the matter.  Executives urge producers to scale back the violence in scenes where the ruler is assassinated in emails sent back and forth between them and the producers.  Sony has already been attacked and after being hacked, much of their confidential information has been released.  Though there is speculation as to who did the hacking, there is no real evidence supporting these suspicions.

While poking fun at another country or political system entertains the public, Sony may have gone too far with this film, as it directly involves an unpredictable real life ruler who is upset and has promised disciplinary action against them.  What was supposed to be a cutting edge and innovative production has become a point of conflict, before it has even been released.  Though the intent for sure was to provide incentive to watch the film, Rogan and Sony Pictures may have overstepped their boundaries, as the film may possibly affect Japanese negotiations with North Korea and has absolutely angered a powerful ruler.  However, the hype has definitely spread the word about the production and I’m interested to see the unfolding of events as the film gets released.

How McDonald’s has fought the “gross food” comments

Recently I have seen a lot of videos online about how McDonald’s doesn’t sell food that is eatable for people, or that it is made of bones and nasty materials that people would never consider eating. With this, The company sent a reality show host for Myth Busters, Grant Imahara, to the places that provide McDonald’s with their food. In the two videos I watched they were showing us how they make the McNuggets and the McRib. This is really important for the brand as it combats with the negative feedback that they are getting from the public and pretty much putting it in their face that everything they are selling their customers is eatable and is produced under the right conditions.

This sparked my attention because I think it is a great way for a brand to extend themselves to the public and react to the comments that people are putting out about their food. I think that it is necessary to answer some of these lingering questions that food companies often have when it is fast food and quickly prepared in not the best conditions that are visible to consumers. What do you think? Do you think more companies should do this for their food? Do you think these videos end the idea of “gross food” for some people? It is enough for you?

How A Brand Changes their Ads for the Seasons

I wanted to focus on Coca Cola for this blog because I think they do a great job marketing their product during the different seasons. The two seasons that I decided to focus on was Christmas and Summer! Summer obviously does a great job getting promotion and selling their nice cold and refreshing beverage during the hot summer months. With the classic polar bear cooling off with a cold Coca Cola on the iconic can, Coke has been successful in creating an iconic marketing strategy for their company. Their commercials are usually really striking and tie in old memories that people can make connections with during any season. I have attached below a video of a Coke commercial in the summer. This commercial to me definitely brings back memories of going out and being outside with your friends all summer and jus being kids.

The second season I want to talk about is Christmas. Coca Cola is HUGE for promoting their “ice cold beverage” as a tradition during the holiday season. During this time they wrap  santa claus on the can and completely changes the experience of drinking the product. During this time everyone is gathering together to have fun and enjoy being around loved ones. I think coke does a great job in creating this moment for people through their commercials. Their holiday commercials can easily remind a person what the holiday season is really all about: family, love, and happiness.

I wanted to look at this brand and how I personally thought they were able to transition and use the seasons as huge selling points for their company. I think Coca Cola is an excellent brand for this as I really do believe that they are able to provide the customer with a personal experience no matter what the season. I think they do a create job of changing the appeal of their drink while keeping the purpose of enjoying it with family and loved ones.


I think we all have seen the video I’ve provided above. I Remember seeing this for the first time and I was in complete shock. It definitely brings in a social and relatable component that some commercials leave out. I think the incorporation of these videos that are coming out on YouTube tend to inspire people. I know after watching this I was like wow it must be really interesting to kiss a stranger, on camera, for the purpose of revealing how awkward yet passionate it is to kissing a stranger and have it all recorded.

When I found out this was an ad for a clothing company I am not going to lie I was pretty bummed. The company is called Wren. It is a fashion clothing store who’s CEO created this commercial to showcase her fall collection for’s Video Fashion Week. It started out as a video shared with 21 people, and over night and the following month, the video reached millions of views. Today it has reached around 42 million views and counting.

This commercial was lovely. However I was quite upset when I found out that it was a real video of strangers kissing. Well it was, but it was only create to show a clothing line. I think this is what got a lot of people upset or turned off by the video because it takes away from the original content and turns it into another cheesy advertisement a company has made. Regardless, sales jumped significantly for the company after the video went viral as well as the song, We Might Be Dead Tomorrow sales by Soko. I think this was a great way for companies to really think about how they are reaching their audience. I think more companies need to reflect on the effects of this ad and really think about different create ways that their company can expand their brand awareness.