cover art for S11E22 - Brand Envy 2022

Under the Influence with Terry O'Reilly

S11E22 - Brand Envy 2022

Season 11, Ep. 22

This week, I tell the stories of four of my favourite brands. One holds the record for the most Oscar wins, one was a kid’s animated show produced by a church, another became one of the best-selling toys of all time and one found a way to cut through late-night TV. And all lasted for decades.

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  • 20. Bookmarks 2024

    This week it’s our annual Bookmarks episode.We read a lot of books to research Under The Influence. But there’s never enough room to include all the great stories we find.So this episode is dedicated to those great stories that didn’t fit into our regular episodes. This year, our theme is bravery.We’ll tell an amusing story about how Danny DeVito made a bold decision when he was auditioning for the sitcom Taxi.We’ll salute Lucille Ball’s bravery.And we’ll talk about how Jacques Plante revolutionized goaltending by being brave enough to defy his coach.
  • Record the Under the Influence Fun Fact

    Under the Influence fans know that at the very end of each episode there’s a Fun Fact – an interesting little tidbit related to the show. Well, this year we’re asking you, our listeners, to record that Fun Fact. All you need is a phone or computer. Just visit our Fun Fact Page, follow the prompts and have fun with it.We choose two listeners every week – to be featured in the podcast and on CBC Radio.Happy recording. Oh, and keep checking back. The latest Fun Fact is refreshed every week.
  • 18. The Gong Show: Ads That Could Never (Ever) Run Today

    This week, we go back in advertising history and take a look at the ads and commercials that could never, ever, EVER run today. They are either so politically incorrect, so sexist, or so inappropriate, you won’t believe your ears. From doctors recommending cigarettes, to 7-Up advertising to babies, to everyone singing about the joys of DDT, it’s amazing to think they all ran back in the day. Ads that couldn’t run today.
  • 17. Cars Are The Stars: Automobile Brands in Hollywood

    Almost every movie and television show needs cars, and auto companies are happy to supply them – because it helps sell a lot of cars. We’ll look back at James Bond and Starsky & Hutch, and explore auto partnerships with movie franchises like Transformers and Marvel. We’ll also tell a crazy story of how the most sought-after car from a Steve McQueen movie was finally found – and the cosmic coincidence that led to its discovery. Cars are the stars.
  • 16. Ham on Wry: Sandwich Board Advertising

    Take a walk down any busy main street, and you’ll probably see one of the oldest forms of advertising: The sandwich board. They have been around for over 200 years. Cities try and ban them.Storekeepers love them. They can make you smile.They can make you angry.They can attract a lot of attention. They are the pop-up ads of the physical world. 
  • 15. Pants on Fire: When Customers Lie to Marketers

    Customers often lie to companies in surveys, polls and focus groups. Yet advertisers rely on that flawed and false feedback to market brands and create advertising campaigns. So what are advertisers to do? One solution is Google. What we type into the Google search window is like a truth serum. We all pour our most intimate, honest questions into that search box.
  • 14. Cheeky Advertising

    80% of all advertising is ignored. That’s why some advertisers employ cheeky advertising. It’s usually bold – outrageous – and sometimes even rude – but always with a playful undertone. We’ll talk about a fruit company that printed an open letter to the Pope. An airline campaign that told you to “keep it in your pants.” And a product that claims your grandparents had more sex than you. 
  • 13. Billionaire Tourism

    Most tourism marketing aims at the largest audience possible. This week, we look at a sub-category aimed at the smallest audience possible: Billionaire Tourism. The super wealthy get bored easily. That means luxury tour planners dream up extreme vacation ideas. From outer space, to the bottom of the ocean, to secretly getting the key to the Sistine Chapel, it’s a whole new pricey world.
  • 11. When You're This Big, They Call you Mister

    There are some time-honored honorifics in the world of marketing. “Honorifics” are titles like Mr., Mrs., Doctor, Captain or Colonel.  Like Colonel Sanders, Dr. Scholl’s, Mr. Clean and Mrs. Butterworth’s. They’re usually leaders in their category. Is it because those products are the best? Or – is it because those brand names give the products a sense of respect and authority?