Best Branded Content at CES

If the tech industry needed a reminder that using the right words and media to promote a product can be just as important as the product itself, Michael Bay delivered that reminder last week at CES. After a teleprompter failure, the “Transformers” director froze with stage-fright while promoting the electronic giant’s new 105-inch 4K HDTV. The performance upstaged the launch, inspired a blizzard of #fail tweets, and even got mocked by Tina Fey at the Golden Globes.

Actually, considering all the attention, you could probably make the argument that Bay’s flub was the best piece of branded content at CES. After all, you didn’t see Tina Fey talking about Vizio’s keynote, right?

Truth be told, the branded content pickings were a little slim last week in Vegas. But here are some of the best:


Ad Age gushed about the interactive, three-dimensional Twitter created to onboard big brands on their new marketing offerings, putting a new spin on the hotel suite pitch. Twitter was very creative in showing brands how they could track potential marketing moments in real-time. Let’s see if this bit of branded content finally propels them to profitability.

Omnicorp (Sony)

One of the most creative CES promo videos comes from a company that wasn’t even at the show. Omnicorp’s 2027 Keynote Presentation video is actually a smartly-timed viral ad for the upcoming “RoboCop” movie. It lampoons CES keynotes perfectly, and simultaneously manages to be absolutely terrifying.


The clear winner of Vegas, the World Wrestling Entertainment, dropped a Stone Cold Stunner on the rest of the show by announcing the launch of its subscription-based digital network, set to premiere February 24. WWE’s top soldiers like John Cena and Steve Austin cranked up wrestling’s hype machine for the launch; in the aftermath, they made sure that the press spread those hype videos far and wide. The brand managed to control the conversation with swagger and smarts, including taking a shot at Michael Bay with a little showmanship. (Sorry, Michael!) Austin also told Yahoo Sports the network is “like YouTube plus a million,” which makes no sense, but with 24/7 programming available for $9.99 per month, he’s probably right.

Is there anything we missed? Probably. Let us know @Contently on Twitter.

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