• Allied Partnerships is teaming up with Butterfinger once again, this time in support of client Tencent America's top mobile game, PUBG MOBILE. This marks Butterfinger's first time partnering with a mobile gaming property on their tentpole "Game Better with Butterfinger" marketing campaigns. From now until August 31, 2022, players who purchase two Butterfinger bars (or one Fun Size Butterfinger bag) will be able to redeem Butterfinger-branded in-game content in PUBG MOBILE: a Parachute, a Car Skin and a Costume Set. During the collaboration, Tencent America will promote the partnership to PUBG MOBILE players in-game via a special login challenge, a pop-up banner, a landing page and push notifications. Meanwhile, Butterfinger will be promoting the partnership at retail, online with co-branded media (Twitch, Influencers, Paid Social, etc.) and through earned/owned influencer, social and PR efforts. The stunt has been featured in Adweek and Gamespot! The below creative is not to be shared externally.

  • The San Diego field marketing team entered the “Danger Zone” with Paramount Pictures for the Global Premiere of Top Gun: Maverick on Wednesday, May 4th at the Civic Theatre in downtown San Diego. The city-wide celebration kicked off with a screening at the NAS North Island Lowry Theatre where Tom Cruise and Jerry Bruckheimer were in attendance. Cruise then flew his own Top Gun: Maverick branded helicopter across the San Diego Bay and landed on the USS Midway where he was greeted by the rest of the TGM cast including Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Glen Powell, Lewis Pullman, Charles Parnell, Bashir Salahuddin, Monica Barbaro, Jay Ellis, Danny Ramirez, Greg Tarzan Davis and hundreds of fans. After completing a staggering number of regional, national, and global press interviews on the red carpet, the cast were whisked away to the premiere at the Civic Theatre and from there attended a lavish post-screening celebration at Portside Pier. This highly anticipated event was over 2 years in the making and truly worth the wait for San Diegans whose hearts hold a special place for the Top Gun Franchise.

  • Adventure Aquarium was recently announced as one of 20 nominees for USA Today’s 10 Best Aquariums, part of the publication’s 2022 Readers’ Choice Awards. Winners are chosen by public voting, which closes on Monday, May 23 at noon ET. The 10 Best Aquariums winners will be announced on Friday, June 3. Show your support and help us earn the #1 spot by voting for Adventure Aquarium here. Voting is limited to one (1) vote per day.


Ad Vendors / Platforms / Data

  • Ad spending on connected TV platforms is expected to increase 39% YoY to $21.2B in 2022, making it the fastest growing video channel. (SPGlobal)

  • Amazon confirmed it uses voice data from its Echo devices to serve targeted ads on its own platforms and the web. It also confirmed users are served targeted ads via its smart speakers. (The Verge)

  • NBCUniversal has revealed a set of 9 new ad formats including an e-commerce initiative @homeShopping and a personalization tool called Choose Your Destiny. (Deadline)

  • Google has introduced My Ad Center, which gives users direct control over which ads they see by allowing them to select which companies they want to see more ads from. (AdWeek)

Awards / Festivals

  • Fortnite had its fourth annual “Short Nite” film festival, premiering 10 short movies in-game. Epic Games also offered a popcorn-eating emote for an authentic virtual viewing experience. (The Verge)

  • The 2022 Cannes Film Festival will provide TikTok users with exclusive livestreaming content from red carpets to backstage moments and interviews with talent. Content will be presented via the official @festivaldecannes account on TikTok. (Variety)

  • Spider-Man: No Way Home received the most nominations at the MTV Movie & TV Awards with 7 nods, followed by Euphoria with six nominations and The Batman, which got four nods. (THR)

  • Leading Tony Award nominations is "A Strange Loop" with 11, including one for best musical. Following closely behind is the musical "MJ," with 10 nominations. (CNN)

Cinemas / Theatrical

  • 3 in 5 consumers would rather watch movies at home via streaming services, twice the amount that would rather watch movies in the theater. (Morning Consult)

  • AMC Theatres reported $785.7M in Q1 revenue, more than 5X the amount it generated in Q1 2021 as audiences return to movie theaters. (Fool)

  • Cost of tickets and selection of films in a movie theater are important to 4 in 5 US consumers, ranking just above the physical comfort of the theater and the audio and visual quality of the films. (Morning Consult)

  • Box office sales in China dipped below $9M last week. Year-to-date total earnings have stalled at $2.25B, 34% behind the same period in 2021. (Variety)

  • AMC Theatres posted a Q1 loss of $337.4M, down from $567M in Q1 2021. Shares in AMC also went up 2% as investors digested how AMC is taking advantage of consumers returning to the movies coming out of the pandemic. (THR)

  • Cinema attendance in the EU and the UK has not yet rebounded from the pandemic, despite seeing 28% growth in ticket sales YoY. In 2021, Europe saw at 394M tickets sold, just 40% of the pre-pandemic average. (THR)

Gambling / Casinos

  • US casinos had their best month ever in March, recording $5.31B in revenue (not including revenue from casinos run by Native American tribes). Gamblers spent $8.19B on slot machines alone in Q1. (WSJ)

  • Hard Rock has partnered with Red Bull Racing "to create inspiring, immersive and exhilarating experiences” for fans, focused on Grand Prix weekends across the 23-race calendar. (YogoNet)

  • A metaverse casino that investigators say has ties to Russia, Flamingo Casino Club, was hit with a multistate emergency cease-and-desist order. Among the violations alleged in the order are that the virtual casino failed to provide a physical address, phone number, and evidence to legitimize its promises of profits to NFT holders. (CNBC)

Live Events / Attractions

  • Madison Square Garden saw revenue of $194.6M in Q1, up from $31M in Q3 2021 as attendance bounced back from pandemic levels. In addition to ticket sales, MSG also saw strong consumer spending on food, beverages and merchandise, which exceeded pre-pandemic levels by “a strong double-digit percentage.” (THR)

  • Snapchat is partnering with Live Nation to enhance the experience of going to concerts and festivals via its AR technology. Attendees at select festivals will be able to use Snapchat's AR camera to try on merchandise, find friends and discover landmarks featured on festival grounds. (Tech Crunch)

  • iHeartMedia will soon hold its annual “Can’t Cancel Pride: Proud and Together” fundraiser for the LGBTQ+ community. The event will feature performances and appearances by Elton John, Katy Perry, Sam Smith, and Lizzo. (Variety)

  • Australia will host the 2027 men's and 2029 women's Rugby World Cup tournaments. Rugby Australia estimates that hosting the tournaments will inject $1.8B into the economy. (ABC)

Music / Audio / Podcasts

  • The podcast advertising industry is continuing to grow, with US ad sales expected to increase 47% this year to $2.13B. (Variety)

  • The podcasting industry will generate an estimated $4B in revenue by 2024. Much of this growth will come from advances in ad tech that allow advertisers to better target audiences and encourage them to spend more money. (The Verge)

  • Wondery and Amazon Music have unveiled their 2022 podcast slate, which includes multiple investigative series as well as a Latinx-hosted show that highlights local and regional stories within Latin America. (Variety)

  • AGM client Napster has been acquired by Hivemind and Algorand, which plan on bringing Napster into Web3 “to unlock value for the entire ecosystem and revolutionize how artists and fans enjoy music.” (Complete Music Update)

  • Sonos will roll out its own voice control assistant, Sonos Voice Control, in the US on June 1st. Owners of Sonos devices will be able to start music playback, skip tracks, adjust volume, and send audio to other Sonos speakers in their home using “Hey Sonos” voice commands. (The Verge)

  • Warner Music Group's total streaming revenue increased 9% QoQ. Warner's CEO claims music services may have less churn than video streamers because "while films and TV series may come and go, devotion to one’s favorite music and artist is more deep-seated and longer-lasting.” (THR)

NFT / Blockchain / Crypto

  • Bitcoin is down about 55% from its November peak, and 40% of holders are now underwater on their investments. In the last month alone, 15.5% of all bitcoin wallets fell into a loss. (CNBC)

  • The world's largest crypto exchange by volume, Binance, has gained regulatory approval to provide digital asset services in France, the first European country where it has acquired such permission. (Tech Crunch)

  • Gucci will accept payment in more than 10 cryptocurrencies at US stores by the end of this month and plans to extend the pilot to all of its North America stores this summer. (Vogue)

  • Crypto prices fell dramatically with the price of Bitcoin dropping as low as $27K. Ethereum crashed 22% and XRP, solana, cardano and avalanche all fell between 25% and 33%. (Forbes)

  • MLB has partnered with Sorare to create an NFT-based fantasy game that includes purchasing, selling and collecting NFTs of MLB players. Rather than being a draft-style game, teams will be built from the NFT cards that a particular fan owns. (ESPN)

  • Meta is testing NFTs on Instagram in the US, allowing users to show off what they've bought or created. Users will need to connect a digital wallet such as MetaMask, Rainbow or Trust Wallet, in order to post. (Engadget)

  • Ukraine's President Zelenskyy has launched a new fundraising platform, United24, which accepts donations in more than 100 different crypto assets. (CryptoNews)

  • The Chainsmokers are releasing a collection of 5K NFTs alongside their new album. Each Chainsmoker NFT will give holders 1% of the album's master streaming royalties. (Billboard)

OTT / Streaming

  • FuboTV subscribers who signed up for the $69.99/mo Pro Plan after May 2nd will not have access to 4K streaming events. To get 4K, new fuboTV customers need to subscribe to the Elite Plan for $79.99/mo. (Streamable)

  • YouTube TV has added two Spanish-language options: the Spanish Plan and Spanish Plus. While the Spanish Plan offers 28 Spanish-only channels starting at $24.99/mo, Spanish Plus is an add-on for existing YouTube TV Base Plan subscribers and includes 25 additional Spanish channels starting at $9.99/mo. (Tech Crunch)

  • Roku has added Discovery+ as an offering on the Roku Channel. Both the $5-a-month ad-supported version and the $7-a-month ad-free version will be part of the integration. (Deadline)

  • Netflix may launch an ad-supported subscription plan by the end of 2022. The plan would cost less than the standard subscription, but the exact discounted monthly price isn’t known yet. (Mashable)

  • Netflix partnered with Doritos on a virtual concert event promoting the fourth season of “Stranger Things." The event will take place on June 23rd and Frito Lay will sell “Live from the Upside Down” merchandise. (Marketing Dive)

  • When asked to choose between a less expensive, ad-supported streaming service and a more expensive, ad-free service, consumers always prefer the less expensive option, regardless of location. (Morning Consult)

  • YouTube is testing gifted memberships, allowing viewers to show financial support for creators and get access to certain perks like custom emojis. (The Verge)

  • The Weather Channel has launched “The Weather Channel TV App.” The service starts at $2.99/month or $29.99/year after a 7-Day Free Trial and is only available on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Samsung Smart TV, and Xfinity Flex devices. (Streamable)

  • In the US, IMDb is launching a free IMDb What to Watch app for Fire TV. The new app offers a series of interactive mini-games to help people discover new content and decide what to watch. (Yahoo)

  • Sling TV lost 234K subscribers in Q1, which the company attributes to higher than expected churn following football season. The streamer now has 2.25M subscribers, down 122K from 2.37M in Q1 2021. (Streamable)

  • FuboTV finished Q1 with 1M subscribers, losing about 74K subs QoQ. The company expects to drop below 1M subs by the end of the Q2 but still believes that they are on target for as many as 1.5M by EOY. (Streamable)

  • TelevisaUnivision has acquired the Spanish-language streamer Pantaya. With a focus on movies, Pantaya had over 900K subscribers in 2021. (THR)

  • Disney+ reached 137.7M subscribers in Q1, beating Wall Street expectations of ~5M sub adds, while Hulu added 300K subscribers to reach 45.6M subs and ESPN+ added 1M subscribers to reach 22.3M. (Billboard)

  • Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, an AVOD streaming company that owns Crackle, acquired Redbox for $375M. It's betting on Redbox’s streaming offering to propel it forward in the streaming market. (Tech Crunch)

  • Hulu will be the official streamer of Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, and Austin City Limits Music Festivals in both 2022 and 2023. Two different live feeds will run from Friday through Sunday of each festival, with one feed for the Thursday show from Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza. (Variety)

  • UK's Channel 4 has struck a deal with YouTube to air 1K hours of hit shows for free. The deal also allows Channel 4 to sell ads around the programs. (Guardian)

  • Foxtel and BINGE subscribers will soon be able to stream newly released and catalogue movies from Sony, thanks to a new agreement between Australia’s Foxtel Group and Sony Pictures. (Mumbrella)

Retail / Lifestyle / Travel

  • US consumers’ spending on alcohol was down 15% MoM in March as price increases for necessities like groceries and gas led to declines in nonessential purchases. (Morning Consult)

  • Airbnb redesigned its app with a new Categories feature, which lets users find homes that have special elements. It also introduced Split Stays, which lets users stay in more than one home during the course of one trip. (The Verge)

  • Buy now, pay later company Klarna is launching a virtual-shopping feature allowing consumers to connect with sales associates through chat and video calls in order to get advice, product photos, and demos. (Fast Company)

  • Southwest Airlines revealed a $2B plan to "modernize the customer experience." The plan includes enhanced WiFi and larger overhead bins as well as a new fare category, Wanna Get Away Plus. (Yahoo)

  • Amazon has added "Shopping List Savings" to the Alexa App, letting users scan receipts on eligible products from any store to gain cashback rewards. (Engadget)

Social Media

  • 46% of US TikTok users use social media “often” or “sometimes” to stay up to date on game highlights, while about 30% use social media at least “sometimes” to follow behind-the-scenes sports content. (Morning Consult)

  • Snapchat is releasing new software tools to create augmented reality (AR) shopping content, giving brands another way to engage mobile users and guide them toward a purchase. One application of AR would be to allow users to try on products virtually. (Marketing Dive)

  • About 2 in 5 US Twitter users think the spread of misinformation would get worse if social media companies go private, compared to 1 in 5 who think it would get better. Over a third believe political debate and hate speech would get worse if a social media platform went from public to private. (Morning Consult)

  • TikTok is rolling out a new “Friends” tab that replaces the “Discover” tab in the bottom menu of the app. It will allow users on the platform to find content from people they’ve connected with. (Tech Crunch)

  • TikTok is the fastest growing social platform in the US, with the number of users up 33% since Q4 2020, in Latin America (+45%) and in Europe (+33%). However, TikTok users' paid social engagement is down 7% globally. (GWI)

  • YouTube will soon launch a “Green Screen" tool that will allow users to use up to a 60-second video from any eligible YouTube video or YouTube Shorts as the background for their new original Shorts video. (Tech Crunch)

  • Elon Musk's deal to buy Twitter is on hold "pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users". If spam/fake accounts do make up more than 5% of Twitter users, there's a risk that Musk is overpaying. (Yahoo)

  • TikTok is partnering with Foursquare to help advertisers connect the performance of their digital ads to physical in-store visits. Foursquare's attribution uses mobile device tracking as users move through a physical space, then matches previously exposed devices with this geographic data to provide direct feedback on the number of people that visit the brand’s location after seeing an ad. (Media Post)

Video Games

  • Gamers can now play Fortnite on their iPhone or Android for free with Xbox Cloud Gaming. Microsoft plans to bring more free-to-play titles to the cloud after evaluating the response to Fortnite. (The Verge)

  • Though Roblox saw a decline in hours spent on the game in the US & Canada, strength in other markets helped overall daily active users grow 28% to 54.1M in Q1. Total hours spent on the platform reached 11.8B hours, a 22% rise. (Yahoo)

  • After its split from FIFA, EA announced that EA Sports FC will be released in 2023 after it creates the final game in partnership with FIFA later this year. (AP)

  • Sony sold 11.5M Play Station 5 units in the fiscal year that ended in March and is aiming to sell roughly 18M units in the current fiscal year. Both figures are well behind initial targets of 14.8M and 22.6M units respectively as supply shortages strain distribution. (Bloomberg)

  • Nintendo shipped 23M Switch consoles in the financial year, a 20% decline YoY, citing shortages of semiconductors and other components. (The Verge)

  • Gaming giants EA, Activision, and Ubisoft are focusing on creating mobile games. EA is planning “three big launches” of mobile games including a mobile version of Battlefield, and Activision is launching a Warcraft mobile game later this year. (Axios)

Interesting Campaigns / Creative

  • Instead of showing talent or content in their TikTok ads, Disney+ is using normal people rather than talent, in a more native format.

  • Paramount+ has created a Halo after show completely within Twitter and sponsored by Honda.


  • The UK government published its national AI strategy, which outlines its long-term vision for the technology and its impact on society.

  • Rodney Brooks, the creator of the Roomba, throws cold water on the idea that AI will surpass human intelligence in the near future.

  • A unique look behind the curtain at how one VC fund increased returns.

  • How Peloton uses design and gamification to keep people on the exercise platform.

  • If you think gentrification is about new coffee shops and high rents, you are missing an essential aesthetic element.

  • Watch out for the Trisolarians! Scientists might have found the first-known planet orbiting three stars at once.

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