Ready for Super Bowl Weeknd?; Penn Station Gets Manscaped: Friday’s First Things First

Plus, 9 CMOs on brand purpose

side profile of the weeknd
The Weeknd takes the stage following the success of his 2020 album After Hours. Pepsi
Headshot of Jess Zafarris

Welcome to First Things First, Adweek’s daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on Adweek.com each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.

The Weeknd Will Headline the Pepsi Super Bowl LV Halftime Show

Taking the halftime stage in the 2021 Super Bowl will be three-time Grammy award-winner The Weeknd. After the Canadian superstar teased the announcement with some cryptic social media posts Wednesday night, Pepsi, NFL and Roc Nation dropped the news on Thursday. The Weeknd will perform after a year that mostly lacked live music due to the pandemic.

Catch the details of the performance.

Manscaped Takes Over Penn Station With 225 OOH Ads for Below-the-Belt Grooming

Penn Station has a trim new look thanks to a massive takeover via Manscaped, a brand that aims to “take care of a man’s most important bits” while reducing the stigma of such bits with the head-turning and humorous OOH ads. The campaign, created with agency Intersection, was a reimagining of a pre-pandemic idea intended to make a splash and catch the eyes of commuters, who continue to flow through the station, albeit at somewhat diminished rates.

Explore every angle of the massive campaign, and see how the brand is capitalizing on a huge TikTok audience.

Chipotle’s New Digital Kitchen Positions It for the Post-Pandemic World

The new Chipotle Digital Kitchen in West Point, New York, doesn’t have any tables or chairs and will deal only in to-go and delivery orders. The location, which is prime territory for targeting hungry cadets, is a prototype for a model that could easily and effectively be replicated in the age of the pandemic, perhaps representing the future of the restaurant experience.

Adapting to Covid: Chipotle is far from the first brand to roll out “ghost kitchens” and virtual concepts.

More kitchen creativity: To provide home cooks with inspiration and a bit of fun, PepsiCo is rolling out a new recipe hub calledMore Smiles With Every Bite, along with two cookbooks—one with recipes that incorporate Cheetos, and another that features Mountain Dew.

9 CMOs on Elevating Brand Purpose to a Business Imperative

Brand purpose is a hot and recurring theme in a year when a company’s identity is deeply tied to its ability to authentically connect with consumers. Marketing chiefs play the critical role of helping brands get to the heart of their purpose. We talked to nine CMOs about what it means to them. “The modern marketer is not a mythmaker; they’re a truth-teller,” says Pinterest CMO Andréa Mallard “They want to get to the core truth and tell it in a beautiful way, while also leveraging this truth to truly do good.”

Discover insights from the CMOs of Ulta Beauty, Bank of America, Uber and more.

Agency News & Updates

  • Georgia-Pacific has named Omnicom Media Group’s OMD its U.S. media agency of record.
  • Athletic apparel brand Lululemon has chosen Droga5 New York as its creative agency of record following a review.
  • Huge Midwest—with offices in Chicago and Detroit—has tapped Deadra Rahaman, who boasts a legacy as an influential advocate for industry change in addition to an impressive body of brand and agency work, as its vp of brand strategy.

More of Today’s Top News & Highlights:

Amazon Music Is Using Ring’s Holiday Ad to Cross-Promote Carrie Underwood’s New Album

Home security company Ring is making connections with a new holiday campaign that utilizes a Carrie Underwood song that just dropped exclusively on Amazon Music. It’s part of a partnership with the ecommerce giant and UMG Nashville that simultaneously aims to market Ring’s products and the album.


@JessZafarris jessica.zafarris@adweek.com Jess Zafarris is an audience engagement editor at Adweek.
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