The Apple Roundup: Genius ads may be pitched at older Mac users

Here’s our daily pick of stories about Apple from around the web that you shouldn’t miss. Today’s installment: A theory that Apple was appealing to a new demographic with Genius ads, tensions in the Apple-Samsung courtroom, kid-sized iPads, and how Hollywood does free advertising for Apple.

The Guild turns product placement into merchandising gold

Once upon a time, “The Guild” made fun of merchandising — but this year, to support ambitious plans for the show’s fifth season, a number of product placement deals were struck. And some of those deals have transformed into a wide assortment of merchandise available to fans.

Zadby Sweetens the Deal for Branded Video Producers

When we first covered Zadby, which aims to match brands with popular video producers, we contended that the company seemed to be giving creators the short end of the stick. Now the Reston, Va.-based startup, after a bit of time in the market, has refined its model to reduce risk for participating video producers.

Zadby general manager Beau Brewer told us the company is now offering higher CPMs, guaranteed payouts, and bigger splits of budgets.

Initially, Zadby thought it could safeguard video producers from having advertisers reject their submissions by limiting product placement mentions to 15 seconds. That way, producers could theoretically sub out the 15 seconds if they got rejected. However that proved unrealistic, since brands ended up wanting to commission entire video spots rather than just a small mention.

Read More about Zadby Sweetens the Deal for Branded Video Producers

The New Matchmakers: Startups Tackle Product Placement Deals

Product integration and branded content are taking over entertainment! Whether that sentence reads like an exciting opportunity or a doomsday proclamation depends on your attitude, but either way it’s especially true in online video, where traditional advertising methods haven’t proved to be especially lucrative. As a result, a crop of new startups has emerged to help brands and content creators find each other.

Integrating a piece of content and a brand is a complicated maneuver, with no standard way of matching the two parties. Startups are trying to bring that experience out into the open, so interested brands and shows can scan through each other’s offerings and cut deals. While the startups may have the same goal in mind, their business models vary from taking a listing fee to taking a piece of the transaction to providing a subscription information service.

Read More about The New Matchmakers: Startups Tackle Product Placement Deals

Apple Co-Founder Wozniak Turns To Acting

The Pirate of Woz

The Pirate of Woz

With the abrupt end of Bill Gates’s recent promotional tête à tete with Seinfeld, there’s clearly a comedy void left somewhere in the galaxy. Fortunately, Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, may be just the right shape to fill that void and restore equilibrium.

Though far from scraping the bottom of the tech-celebrity barrel by endorsing a lackluster product, Woz is actually promoting Scott Jordan’s ScotteVest apparel. There are currently two webisodes up, the first finds the big guy doing a spot of fishing (using an iPod for bait) and the second one is a nonsensical Star Wars spoof which seemingly has nothing to do with the ScotteVest products.
There’s definitely a smart idea behind the ScotteVest range — the apparel is designed for guy and girl geeks specifically, the kind of folk who carry tons of digital gadgetry and gizmos. We’re talking jackets and hoodies with pockets to hold an array of essential gadgets (including an awesome feature called CollarConnect™ that runs your headphone wires through the clothing for maximum efficiency).
With such attention to detail, it’s clear as to why Woz — with his awful yet wonderfully endearing style of acting — would appear in a ScotteVest advert.
Head on over to the ScotteVest website to check out Steve Wozniak’s adverts now.