sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 29, 2013 03:36 PM
Starting last Thursday, bigwigs from the NFL’s 32 teams gathered at New York’s Radio City Music Hall to select young players in the hopes that they would become the next John Elway, Gale Sayers, or O.J. Simpson. (Well, OK, maybe not O.J.)
Since 1980, the Draft has been televised and it audience has grown exponentially, with an expected viewership of 50 million for this past weekend's broadcast, Ad Age reports. With that kind of captive audience, sponsorships and advertisers have grown as well. There were 19 official sponsors of the event this year, up from 16 last year. The list included Anheuser-Busch, Nike, Verizon, Pepsi, GMC, Visa, EA Sports, Under Armour, Gatorade and Castrol. It's no doubt that the big names spent more than the $15 million spent across ESPN and the NFL Network last year and the $11.9 million spent the year before.
"To the credit of the NFL, it's the most robust league," Ernest Lupinacci, founder of branding consultancy Ernest Industries, told Ad Age. "They announced the [2013 regular season] schedule and people went crazy. It was as if they let us know they were bringing the McRib sandwich back."Continue reading...
start your engines
Posted by Dale Buss on April 1, 2013 03:02 PM
No part of the automotive business is more important than the pickup-truck segment, where the biggest profits are made by each of Detroit's Big Three automakers. It's also a crucial time for pickup-truck sales because they're the vehicle of choice for the construction contractors who are finally benefiting from a significant bounceback in the U.S. housing market.
But there was another reason that General Motors made a big deal on Monday of the announcement of first mileage specifications for versions of the new Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups that are due out this spring: It gave GM a chance to tweak arch-rival Ford on the issue of fuel economy, which is increasingly important to American truck buyers.
GM said that the Silverado and Sierra version that is expected to be by far the most popular configuration—a crew-cab truck with an 5.3-liter EcoTec3, eight-cylinder engine—will offer better mileage than directly competitive V8 models and will even barely beat out a version of the 2013 Ford F-150 pickup with a six-cylinder EcoBoost engine.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on March 15, 2013 04:43 PM
General Motors brands and Lexus were the big winners when J.D. Power & Associates announced its highly regarded annual awards for dealership-customer satisfaction based on its survey of thousands of American automotive consumers.
Three GM brands—led by GMC, and also including No. 3 Buick and No. 4 Chevrolet—placed in the top five in Power's prestigious designation. No. 2 Mini and No. 5 Volkswagen rounded out the top five. Three Chrysler Group brands—Jeep, Ram and Dodge—finished at the bottom.
In the luxury arena, Lexus once again won the day—for the fifth straight year—followed by yet another GM brand, Cadillac; Jaguar; Acura; and Infiniti. BMW and Mercedes-Benz placed below average, while Land Rover gained the most of any luxury brand from last year.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on March 4, 2013 10:16 AM
And so God created spin.
Get ready for the coming announcements that Ram's much touted "God Made a Farmer" ad and subsequent "farmer" campaign led to sales success for the flagging brand. There is likely to be more pieces with headlines like this one: "Chrysler Ram's farmer strategy pays off." But don't be fooled. Ram's strategy has no more paid off than the ad's narrator, Paul Harvey, knew about farming. Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on March 4, 2013 08:46 AM
Walmart philanthropic director Sylvia Mathews Burwell expected to be nominated Monday as Obama's budget chief.
India develops a taste for premium beer while officials approve $2 billion Diageo deal.
HSBC set for $23 billion profit as turnaround gains traction.
AB InBev takes to Twitter and newspaper ads to fight watered-down-beer charges.
AIDS drug breakthrough sees infant evidently cured through early use of virus-blocking drugs.
Alfa Romeo reboot marks tough road for Fiat.
American Airlines drops below 60,000 employees for the first time since 1987.
AOL's new Brand Group CEO Susan Lyne lays out her goals.
Asos joins brands using Twitter's Vine for short form social video marketing.Continue reading...
detroit auto show
Posted by Dale Buss on January 14, 2013 09:55 AM
The Motor City is the hub of the global auto industry once more, and the North American International Auto Show that opens with a press preview on Monday in Detroit's Cobo Center will underscore that welcome returning reality. It's also expected that the U.S. market as a whole will pick up share versus other global markets in 2013.
Over the last decade, Detroit's traditional "Big Three" automakers have been transformed. Their shares of the market collapsed; then the Great Recession whacked the U.S. car market; then the federal government bailed out two of them.
But now, arguably, General Motors, Ford and Chrysler are in their best shape collectively in a very long time.
Each is selling trucks at a healthy clip again, their most profitable segment. GM will finally shed the rest of the albatross of U.S.-government ownership soon and, with a slew of new-product launches ready for 2013, should enjoy a share uptick this year. Ford will be trying to build on its gains of the last few years with solid new models including a restyled Ford Fusion sedan, the hybrid-only C-Max and the new Escape. And Chrysler, now owned by Fiat, will attempt to keep building on its remarkable turnaround story.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 13, 2012 06:09 PM
Pickup trucks still haul the freight when it comes to U.S. auto sales and profits, especially for Detroit's Big Three. So it's a big deal when a new or improved pickup model comes in from the wings.
That's what happened today with General Motors' unveiling of the first redesigned Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickup trucks since 2006, featuring "evolutionary" exterior styling changes but significant engine and interior improvements. “The new Sierra and Silverado are more differentiated than ever in unique features and materials, in their standard content and in their design and details,” stated Mark Reuss, president, GM North America. “These are two strong and distinct brands – each one appealing to a different kind of customer.”
The launch of the 2014 Silverado and Sierra is heavy with possibilities. It'll greatly boost GM's sales and financial prospects in 2013 and beyond. It will pose a heightened competitive threat to Ford, whose F-150 pickup long has been America's best-selling vehicle. And a successful takeoff for the new GM pickups could go a long way toward restoring investor confidence in the company which, in turn, might boost its stock price enough for the federal govenrment to feel justified in selling off its last stake in the automaker that it brought through bankruptcy in 2009.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 3, 2012 02:22 PM
As vehicles cluster closer together at ever-higher levels in objective measures of quality, such as manufacturing defects and "fit-and-finish," more subjective indicators are helping to differentiate brand perceptions about "quality." Customer treatment in dealer showrooms and dealings with brands' retail reprentatives increasingly are one of those.
Obviously, Lexus and Mini have a firm grip on this increasingly important dynamic. Lexus finished first for the second straight year among luxury brands in the US according the latest annual rating by J.D. Power & Associates of customer satisfaction with the auto-buying experience, and MINI finished first among mainstream brands for the third time in a row.
Power based its findings on 32,000 owner surveys in May, measuring satisfaction with the selling process at dealerships where they made their purchase and at any store where they shopped but didn't buy, according to Automotive News. Overall for the industry, greater consumer satisfaction with salespeople helped raise the general score.Continue reading...