brands under fire
Posted by Dale Buss on May 20, 2013 01:39 PM
Hyundai is reportedly close to settling 38 federal lawsuits filed after it overstated the fuel economy of its cars. Such a turning point might suggest a grand statement by the brand seeking to sweep that nasty episode behind Hyundai for good with a hearty mea culpa.
But just as Hyundai marketing stewards have done from the beginning of this shameful interlude that began in November, they're making sure they communicate primarily with the offended parties—Hyundai owners—instead of with the general public. Hyundai simply continues to carry out the remedy it came up with last fall of an apology to those owners, changing of internal procedures about estimating mileage, and a reimbursement to its customers consisting of debit cards for gasoline purchases to help make up for the mileage they "lost," around $88 for each year they've owned the vehicle with overstated mileage.
"We're focusing on the owners," Steve Shannon, CMO of Hyundai of America, told brandchannel. "We think we're doing the right thing. Every day a certain number of [reimbursement chits] come in and we send them a debit card, and the owners tend to be very pleased with the fairness of the settlement."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 17, 2013 10:38 AM
Much of the ascension of the Hyundai brand in the US market has been about hand-holding, ranging from its trailblazing 100,000-mile warranty introduced several years ago to the groundbreaking Hyundai Assurance program in 2009 that promised Hyundai buyers that the company would pick up their car-loan payments if they lost their jobs.
So it's not surprising that Hyundai's newest brand-wide play is a program called Assurance Connected Car, which provides a free platform of safety and maintenance services across its lineup of vehicles that come equipped with its Blue Link telematics system. In advertising, the brand has tapped the musical legacy of Bob Marley and his song, "Three Little Birds," to remind Hyundai customers that they "don't need to worry about a thing" if they have the system.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 10, 2013 01:52 PM
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: Cadillac sales... stretching Jag... dim sum Puma... Met ball influence... Porsche... Luxury brands... Jets... Avril Levine's tea... Hyundai pop... Lenovo... Shanghai Disney... Bitcoin... LeTV... Tainted L'Occitane... Pearson Ed... Iron Man badminton... and more.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Dale Buss on May 6, 2013 07:14 PM
JCPenney's Magical Makeup Tour continues. Right after it posted a video mea culpa and launched a new Facebook and Twitter campaign to reach out to disaffected consumers, #jcpListens, the brand has made another major flip-flop in the interests of appeasing its traditional customer base. It's one of the handful of interesting attempts at brand forgiveness going on these days, which also include Mtn Dew, General Motors and Hyundai.
The retailer has reversed field and now plans to restore the house brand St. John's Bay, a $1 billion marque that was eliminated by since-ousted CEO Ron Johnson amid the many other mistakes he made in attempting to transform the venerable retailer. JCPenney announced that St. John's Bay emerged as tops in its poll on Facebook asking what JCPenney brand was the voter's favorite.
"We heard you," JCPenney said after the poll results were in. "St. John's Bay is back! What will you snag first, pants or shirts?" the brand posted on Facebook.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Dale Buss on April 25, 2013 07:01 PM
The recent, cartoonish prospective print ads by Ford's agency in India—depicting Silvio Berlusconi and Paris Hilton as heartless kidnappers—turned out to be mere child's play in the modern universe of tin-eared automotive marketing. Hyundai has just set the bar at a new low with an online ad in Europe for its iX35 fuel-cell car, which depicts a suicide attempt in the car—which eventually fails because of the vehicles clean emissions.
The spot by Innocean, Hyundai's agency of record because it is owned by Hyundai, shows a man sitting in the driver's seat of a Hyundai in his garage, having made all the necessary preparations for offing himself by breathing in carbon monoxide. But, despite the foreboding music, it doesn't work. The commercial shows a tube—run into the passenger compartment from the exhaust pipe—emitting what looks like smoke but turns out to be vapor, as the car runs on "100-percent water emissions," a tagline informs the viewer. The guy is out of luck.
Hyundai today pulled the ad (which was posted last week) from YouTube, but it has gone wildly viral and enraged the brand's fans and non-fans the world over. "Hyundai understands the video has caused offense," Hyundai Europe said in a statement (update: scroll down for additional statements). "We apologize unreservedly. The video has been taken down and will not be used in any of our advertising or marketing."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 24, 2013 11:42 AM
It's one thing for Lexus to become a more American brand by building vehicles here, which has been announced in recent days, but a bigger challenge might be recasting the Toyota-owned luxury brand as an aspirational marque for younger consumers.
That is Lexus's goal, and it's in the midst of rolling out a number of initiatives to attempt to achieve that.
The brand plans a rollout of a new global marketing campaign in May under the fresh tagline, "Amazing in Motion." It is emphasizing mold-breaking exterior design for the first time in Lexus history, especially through the introduction of a so-called spindle hourglass-shaped grille. And it is even taking a page from a brand as far afield as GQ, by opening a new series of Intersect by Lexus meeting places in Tokyo, Dubai and New York starting this summer.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 22, 2013 05:46 PM
As brands around the world celebrate Earth Day, it is becoming more apparent that creative, effective marketing will be a vital factor in the adoption of green consumer products and practices. Years have passed since terms like "green" and "sustainability" became part of the lexicon, but little has changed when it comes to consumer behavior that effects the environment. Joel Makower, author and chairman of GreenBiz Group blames "half-hearted, humorless and uninspired," marketing efforts that push "underwhelming, overpriced, inconvenient, ineffective or unavailable," green products.
Initiated in 1970 by Denis Hayes, 20 million Americans gathered for peaceful demonstrations in favor of environmental reform. Today, more than one billion people in nearly 200 nations recognize Earth Day and its goals. This year's Earth Day theme revolves around climate change and all those affected by it, from "a man in the Maldives worried about relocating his family as sea levels rise," to "the orangutan in Indonesian forests segmented by more frequent brushfires and droughts."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 15, 2013 09:03 AM
Charlie Ergen's Dish Network offers to buy Sprint for $25.5 billion in a bid to one up SoftBank.
ConAgra, Heinz and Nestle lead frozen food battle to reverse negative image.
Nike seeks to regain its edge with fewer ads following Tiger Woods stumble.
Dannon uses Greek-style to leapfrog Yoplait to top of U.S. yogurt business.
Apple clearly enters post-Jobs era.
Justin Bieber sparks controversy with Anne Frank comment.
Boeing sees new inspection order on its 737s.Continue reading...