Posted by Dale Buss on May 23, 2013 04:28 PM
The picture for Ford and other automakers in the US market continues to look pretty good, but Europe remains a very challenging market. So Ford is launching a major new European advertising campaign this weekend tied to the "Super Bowl" of the continent's favorite sport, soccer.
Ford of Europe is leveraging the hugely popular 2013 UEFA Champions League Final football match on Saturday to begin a new effort—one of the biggest so far under its worldwide "Go Further" positioning unveiled last year—that emphasizes technologies available across all or much of Ford's product lineup rather than focusing, as usual, on individual nameplates.
A TV audience of 150 million people across Europe is expected for the finals at London's Wembley stadium, where perimeter boards at the game also will direct viewers to a new website that includes entertaining videos and information about the featured technologies.Continue reading...
brands during wartime
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 21, 2013 11:43 AM
Avoiding nuclear armageddon is great but avoiding nuclear armageddon with an icy cold Coca-Cola is better. As the saying goes, "Things go better with Coke."
The latest entry into the historical record of branding campaigns is Coca-Cola's new endeavor "to break down barriers and create a simple moment of connection between two nations—India and Pakistan."
On the sincere surface, it's a genuinely heartfelt message that creates an emotional bond with the brand. A more cynical reading is that it's a genuinely heartfelt message that creates an emotional bond with the brand in two markets in which Coca-Cola's market percentage lags.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 2, 2013 12:32 PM
For its ad stereotyping Asians, GM has offered the standard 'we're sorry you're so easily offended' apology, with a brand spokesperson saying, "Our intent was not to offend anyone and we’re deeply sorry if anyone was offended."
In fact, it really is not a surprise that GM wouldn't immediately recognize the ad as offensive. While brands now go out their way to avoid racism targeting many groups, Asians are still typically not on the vigilance radar. Heck, even Iron Man 3, a film that has been criticized for pandering to Chinese interests, couldn't resist throwing a little barb in about how poor the Chinese are at English. (see above; "Man Iron").
GM added that it would make sure "this never happened again." Maybe not at GM, but this will happen again. It was just in 2002 that popular youth clothing line Abercrombie & Fitch was slammed for a line of Asian-themed shirts including one reading, "Wong Brothers Laundry Service—Two Wongs Can Make It White." The brand's response? "It's never been our intention to offend anyone." Sound familiar?Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on April 22, 2013 12:46 PM
"Stronger marketing" was one of the four identified strategies in a late 2012 "growth strategies" report from McDonald's Holdings Japan. The chain desperately needs some positive strategy in Japan, where McDonald's has reported 12 consecutive months of decreasing sales and a nearly 18 percent drop in operating profit.
Stronger marketing includes recruiting quality employees and brand ambassadors. To this end, McDonald's Japan has introduced the "Dancing McCrew," a viral hit about dancing through the workday.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on April 12, 2013 01:04 PM
Above, Hitchcock H7N9 bird flu poster featuring Shanghai's skyline, via Weibo.
China is the second largest economy in the world and every significant brand's future is impacted by its growth (or collapse)—but who's got the time?! Here's the week's reads that will make you look like a keen China observer in case you find yourself immersed in a cultural conversation.
This week: What's haunting Weibo?... Chicken woes for KFC... North Korean beer... New Zealand product placement... Audi's new branded film... Car plates... Skinny Uniqlo goes bigger... Inflation... Diaosi Mike Sui... Fan Bingbing for booze... Disneyland... Jordan gets countersued... Chinese spending in Europe... Former Google China head picks a fight with a 13-year-old... and more.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 12, 2013 11:53 AM
Condé Nast is used to long lead times and attention to detail with the publication of its high-end titles including Gentlemen's Quarterly, Glamour and Vogue. But in those regards, printing a magazine is nothing next to rolling out an entirely new strategy of brand extension and enhancement in businesses that have little to do with publishing.
Still, Condé Nast has been plowing ahead with its plans to add bars, clubs, restaurants and even a fashion school in various high-profile locations around the world in order to provide completely new sources of revenues, to exploit its magazine and corporate brands in profitable new ways and to produce an ever-more-valuable offset to a traditional magazine-publishing business that—while still comprising a majority of Conde Nast's revenues—isn't a growth industry anymore.
"Our business can no longer be defined strictly as publishing, but takes the form of brand management," Jonathan Newhouse, chairman and CEO of Condé Nast International, told Business of Fashion. "We want to bring the experience of the publishing brands to end users in new forms in order to strengthen the brands and their relevance. Of course, we aim to do so profitably."Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on April 8, 2013 12:34 PM
"I've been eating at KFC the last few days, could that be a problem?" ("前几天刚吃了肯德基会有问题吗") asked one Weibo user.
The coming week could be a nightmare for KFC in China. Depending on developments in an outbreak of a new strain of avian flu called H7N9, KFC could see its business decimated by another chicken scare just months after a previous one.
KFC is not the only brand worried. Tyson chicken is already rolling out damage control.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 8, 2013 11:41 AM
What North Americans know as moose and Europeans call elk apparently make a tasty meal. Since January, consumers in Europe and Asia could find the animal’s meat in lasagna sold at the Swedish furniture giant's stores. But recently there has apparently been a little something else in IKEA’s Elk Lasagna that consumers weren’t aware of: pork.
This isn't the first meat mix-up that IKEA has dealt with, as the company was one of several retailers implicated in the horse meat scandal that has swept across Europe. IKEA has been forced to remove its famed Swedish meatballs from its restaurants and frozen food aisles, and adding to its meat woes, the brand has just pulled nearly 18,000 units of its elk lasagne from its stores and websites after authorities in Belgium discovered the product contained a percentage of pork meat.Continue reading...