Posted by Dale Buss on November 18, 2013 09:14 AM
Forbes explores sale of 96-year-old magazine.
GM recalls Chevrolet Malibu for two defects as it plans to end brand confusion between Chevy and Opel in Europe and expects to get a leg up with 4G push.
Sony sells more than 1 million PS4s in first 24 hours.
Lily Allen's fashion brand goes into liquidation.
Apple reportedly acquires PrimeSense for $345 million.
BMW pioneers use of carbon fiber in i3.
Bacardi focuses on its brand resilience in new campaign.
Bloomberg makes newsroom cuts.
Boeing gets $95 billion in orders for new jet from Middle Eastern airllines.
China Airlines of Taiwan joins low-cost aviation market.
Cracker Barrel is too confusing to appear in supermarket for now, judge rules.
Daimler sets to take stake in Beijing Auto.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 30, 2013 09:22 AM
Apple named world's most valuable brand, passing Coca-Cola, on Interbrand's Best Global Brands 2013 report.
JetBlue launches premium brand, Mint.
IKEA starts UK solar push.
AOL to start advertising on TV again.
BlackBerry starts selling unlocked phones direct to US buyers.
DirecTV plans to help finance indie films.
Ford sends the checks to soothe C-Max owners on fuel economy as company is said to retain CEO Alan Mulally's "absolute focus" despite reports about Microsoft job, while Ford prepares heir apparent.
GM can't keep up with demand for V-8 pickups.
Home Depot scales up Redbeacon service for small contracting jobs.
Intel invests in wearable device maker Recon.
JCPenney remains on the brink.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 16, 2013 08:04 PM
Mazda is notching some significant progress in its efforts to reposition the brand upscale from the US auto-market mainstream. That's reflected in pricing of its new Mazda6 sedan and in growing consumer regard for its SkyActiv sub-brand.
Mazda6, after going on sale in January, now commands the highest average transaction price in the cut-throat mid-sized sedan segment, according to data from TrueCar.com, reported by Automotive News. The car cleared at an average price more than $1,400 above that paid for the competing Ford Fusion, which finished No. 2 in the segment last month. A year earlier, the previous-generation Mazda6 finished third from the bottom.
At the same time, the new Mazda CX-5 compact crossover, in its second year on the market, saw its average transaction price for August rise by 3 percent from a year earlier, putting it at the No. 5 nameplate in an equally and increasingly crowded, highly-competitive segment where nearly every automaker in the US fields an entry.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 10, 2013 03:47 PM
It's one thing for customers of Mrs. Field's Cookies to give advice to the brand. But can rank-and-file American car buyers really help a brand like Mazda in a business where lead times for changes can be measured in years, not weeks?
OWN watchers can judge for themselves when Oprah Winfrey's network features Mazda on Thursday in the latest installment of its reality series, The Customer Is Always Right. But a Mazda executive told brandchannel that the week spent by the show's protagonists, Tommy and Darla, at Mazda's R&D operations already has helped the brand.
"Our engineers can tend to focus on features and appearance, not uses and benefits," said Robert Davis, senior vice president of US operations. Interacting with focus-group members Tommy, a Mazda owner, and Darla, a skeptic of the brand, for the documentary "focused our group on how our product is actually used. And that was actually a very good lesson for them, because sometimes we get tripped up on whether a feature matches or beats a competitor, or how it looks. But the customer owns this vehicle for three or five or eight years and is using it over and over."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 15, 2013 09:28 AM
Facebook to test its own PayPal competitor.
Walmart cuts earnings guidance for rest of year.
Hertz remakes car rental as a retail experience.
AMC gets advertising bonanza as Breaking Bad winds down.
American Airlines and US Airways preview merger defense.
Cadillac plans to reveal new Escalade this fall.
Cisco cuts 4,000 jobs, blaming weak economic recovery.
Ford plans to boost capital spending as expectations boom.
Hooters blackballs embattled mayor of San Diego as brand dives into social media.
Macy's notes troubling slowdown in store traffic.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 8, 2013 05:21 PM
Mazda hasn't had the vehicle or the marketing muscle to pose a serious threat to the Japanese brands like Toyota or Honda that have dominated the compact-sedan segment in the US for most of the last few decades. But now with a brand-new Mazda6 model and a guerrilla-style marketing campaign to match, brand executives are confident that they can elevate Mazda's standing in this crucial sweet spot of the market.
That's the thinking, anyway, behind the "Take6 Ride and Drive Program" that Mazda is launching this month sequentially in 15 major US cities beginning this week in Seattle and ending in November. The idea of this "experiential" initiative is for Mazda representatives to partner with restaurants where the brand's target demographic is willing to wait for a table and offer to take up just six minutes of their idle time with a quick pitch about, and a test drive of, the Mazda6—which just happens to be sitting at the curb.Continue reading...
Posted by Alicia Ciccone on July 29, 2013 09:45 AM
Hudson's Bay to buy Saks for $2.4 billion.
BMW debuts battery-powered i3 in charge to take on Tesla.
Omnicom, Publicis Groupe to merge, creating the world's largest advertising agency.
Amazon plans to hire 7,000 workers for its US operations.
Boeing asks jet operators to inspect Honeywell beacons over malfunction concerns.
CBS, Time Warner Cable smear campaigns could damage brands as new deadline looms.
Rebranded International New York Times will put a strong emphasis on digital.
Land Rover, Adidas make positive impressions on African Americans, while L'Oreal loses ground.
Liquid-Plumr tests dirty ads to sell drain cleaner.
Mazda expected to post huge leap in Q1 operating profit.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on June 19, 2013 03:14 PM
The influential J.D. Power & Associates ranking of Initial Quality of auto brands in the US is out today, and the big winners are General Motors and some of its brands, as well as Porsche, Audi, Hyundai, Kia, and Chrysler.
The main losers in status, defined by the exhaustive study of quality perceptions among American consumers, are BMW, Ram, Mazda and Nissan. Ford and Lincoln brands basically broke even on a combined basis compared with their reduced status from a year ago.
Porsche came out as the top-performing brand overall, rising from third place in 2012. But for the first time, GM could be considered the top-performing company overall in the closely watched study, placing two brands—GMC and Chevrolet—in the top five of the Initial Quality Study (IQS) released today. The annual survey measures the number of problems on 2013 cars and light trucks that buyers report after 90 days of ownership, and so it's a crucial look at very current consumer perceptions and marketplace realities.Continue reading...