An In-Depth Look at Brand Integration With Cadillac and Anheuser-Busch 

How brand integration helps the iconic brands stay relevant

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Have you ever felt excited when you notice your favorite character driving the same car you own or drinking the same beverage in your fridge?

Audiences are inundated with advertisements on every medium. However, product involvement on television is becoming more relevant and effective. Shana Barry, head of music, celebrity and entertainment at Anheuser-Busch, and Marceline M. Perez, associate director of cross channel strategy and activation at Cadillac, joined Adweek’s Convergent TV Summit for a conversation on how their brand integrations on TV shows and movies authentically and creatively connect to consumers. 

Authentically integrating the brand 

 To stay relevant and ingrained in culture for as long as iconic brands Anheuser-Busch and Cadillac have, the panelists agree that mastering brand integration is essential. 

“Cadillac has been a part of culture for decades,” Perez said. “Everyone from Marilyn Monroe and on were in music videos and film with Cadillac. As a part of being relevant in culture, it is a priority for us to stand for that ultimate goal of success and achievement.” 

Barry agrees that successful brand integration starts with authenticity. 

“What we have in common is the longevity and the iconography of Cadillac and Anheuser-Busch brands,” Barry said. “So, it’s really interesting to think about how we position them in modern-day and pull them forward for our consumers. We’re constantly thinking about the right character, the right scene that we know is going to be in perpetuity, so it’s the difference between being in programmatic or something we’re going to buy for three months or a TV spot that’s going to live forever.” 

As the industry moves toward a world with fewer and fewer traditional ads, Barry believes brand integrations are becoming increasingly important to catch consumer connections. 

“We have to prepare for a world without traditional ads and how to figure out how our brands fit into the consumers’ lives in an authentic way,” she said. “Gone are the days where I’m asking the talent to hold the product with the labels out. I want it to feel right. 

The 360-degree campaign 

According to Barry, the best work comes with a “synergies, not siloes mindset” to treat entertainment integration as a 360-degree campaign — moving beyond placement and into something much larger and more meaningful for consumers. 

“This is a big, big mindset that we have across the marketing department at AB,” she explained. “So, if we’re in a show, how are we leveraging e-commerce with them? What are we doing with experiential? How are we surrounding it with the media buy? And, what type of socials and influencers are we using?” 

Using data to create campaigns that resonate 

Perez said it’s important to use data insights to get to know the audience and to drive decisions on what films, shows, and partners to work with. 

“And, making sure you’re leveraging recognizable talent and being really top-of-mind in culture to know what’s hot, who’s hot, where to be, and why,” she explained. “ Then, how do you naturally bring your product into that in a way that’s relevant? I think it’s making sure that the content is really engaging in the best way possible for the audience you’re trying to reach. It’s nice to reach everyone, but it’s more important to reach the people that matter, so I think how your product is represented in these integrations is critical to making sure you get that right.”