detroit auto show
Posted by Dale Buss on January 18, 2013 11:07 AM
If Sergio Marchionne weren’t the CEO of Fiat and Chrysler, globetrotting across three continents on a regular basis and running companies based on two of them, the man probably would have to make up a similar job just to contain his prodigious energy.
This week, he and the increasingly worldwide automotive operation he runs have made news in North America, Europe and Asia. And the charismatic, peripatetic Italian car mogul has displayed some of the inner edges of his famously expansive personality as well.
In the biggest news, Marchionne signed a deal in Michigan with Guangzhou Automobile Group to build Jeeps in China as Fiat, Chrysler and their brands try to play catch-up in the world’s biggest automotive market. Guangzhou will build at least 100,000 Jeeps there beginning in 2014, and output could double at some point, Marchionne said this week. Continue reading...
no kidding around
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 12, 2012 03:19 PM
Kevin Clash, the puppeteer who not only performs as Elmo on Sesame Street but created the character's persona and inimitable voice, is taking a leave of absence in the wake of allegations he had a relationship with a 16-year-old boy. The accuser, now 23, says the relationship happened seven years ago when Clash was 45; Clash maintains that their relationship was consensual and occurred when his accuser was the legal age of consent.
UPDATE: Clash's accuser today recanted, as reported by the New York Times, which ran this quote from Clash: "I am relieved that this painful allegation has been put to rest. I will not discuss it further." The rest of our original post:
Clash issued a statement on Monday that was cited by CNN: "I am a gay man. I have never been ashamed of this or tried to hide it, but felt it was a personal and private matter. I had a relationship with the accuser. It was between two consenting adults and I am deeply saddened that he is trying to characterize it as something other than what it was. I am taking a break from Sesame Workshop to deal with this false and defamatory allegation."
The unidentified accuser is being represented by a legal firm retained by one of the victims in former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky's criminal trial. The accusation is an unfortunate turn of events, one that Sesame Workshop (formerly the Children's Television Workshop) no doubt hopes won't tarnish its standing as one of the world's leading creators of children's entertainment, and a brand that relies on the trust of parents, educators and legislators, as the recent U.S. presidential election's roping-in of Big Bird by Mitt Romney as the symbol of PBS makes clear.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 9, 2012 02:57 PM
It's hard to think of a brand that is more in crisis today than the Republican Party. Not even JCPenney or Groupon, Kodak or BlackBerry come close.
The dimensions of the licking that the Grand Old Party took at the polls on Tuesday are still unfolding, but Republican leaders and rank-and-file members alike are trying to figure out, exactly, just where they go from here.
They certainly wasted little time in getting started. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, already was communicating via social media in the wee hours of Wednesday that his party needs a new outreach to Hispanics and other minorities — but one based on the appeal of conservative principles such as the importance of the family and hard work.
Beyond that basic formula, there's little agreement within the party ranks about where and how Republicans need to proceed in order to bolster the flagging morale of partisans, try to make back some of the lost ground in elections in 2014 and, of course, ultimately do better in capturing the White House in 2016 when two-term President Obama can't run again.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 7, 2012 09:21 AM
It’s a great day for President Obama, and a pretty good one for Nate Silver as well, the political prognosticator and statistician for the New York Times whose model proved accurate – where Gallup’s, among others, did not. As Buzzfeed quipped, "Nate Silver Wins the Election."
Here’s how right he was: correctly predicted the winner of all 50 states yesterday, predicted Obama winning Virginia and Florida by very small margins and projected Obama would win the popular vote by 2%. The only race he missed: Montana's senate race.
“The real loser last night, outside of Mitt Romney and Republicans of course, was the political pundit class,” notes the Examiner. “The pundits have lost credibility as they swear up and down on the eve of the election that the polls must be wrong. Anything can happen, but in 2016 readers would best put their confidence in hard poll numbers as opposed to the “gut feeling” of someone on a cable news network.”
Formerly a standalone website, Silver's data-crunching FiveThirtyEight blog drew huge traffic for the NYTimes.com, which licensed it for three years in 2010. Turns out the controversy his predictions engendered brought supporters and critics to his site – like moths to the light – a best-of-breed example on the power of personal branding.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 7, 2012 09:03 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama wins re-election, defeats Republican Mitt Romney soundly in electoral votes and with slim popular-vote margin, and puts "Forward" campaign slogan to the test.
American Express and NBC Universal try to create "TV commerce."
Del Monte reminds consumers that its canned products meet their needs.
eBay reaches out to auto buffs with new channel.
Famous Dave's plans expansion, mostly in California.
Financial Times seen as going on the block.
Ford pins hopes on Lincoln MKZ to refresh luxury brand.
Goldman Sachs partners pocket $22 million.
Kevin Bacon helps rebrand UK's Everything Everywhere as EE.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 5, 2012 04:32 PM
As Barack Obama campaigns at his final rally today in the vital swing state of Ohio with his pals Jay-Z (who sang, "I've got 99 problems, but Mitt ain't one) and Bruce Springsteen, apparently some voters may be confused. And not because they're undecided.
The hard-fought, long-awaited presidential election will finally take place on Tuesday and America will decide which leader it wants to follow: President Barack Obama or Governor Mitt Romney. This pair has done pretty much everything it can on the marketing front, short of skywriting and Potter-style notes delivered by owl, to get their respective messages out to voters. Combined, their campaigns have spent more than a billion dollars on television ads alone this election, an almost embarrassing sum of money given the state of the U.S. economy.
And online was no different. The two candidates have dedicated digital teams that have been trying to push their message through every online channel imaginable. One of those, though, is getting some negative attention: brand hijacking. That's when a brand buys search-engine ad space for when a consumer searches for a competing brand. In some parts of the US, when someone searches for “Barack Obama” in Google or Facebook, ads for Romney appear. And when some Americans search for “Mitt Romney,” ads for Barack Obama appear.Continue reading...
mom's the word
Posted by Shirley Brady on November 1, 2012 12:02 PM
If this political indeed rises and falls on which campaign can win over "Walmart Moms," Walmart is more than happy to offer up their opinions. In a move to own one of the hot-button phrases in this U.S. election cycle, Walmart not only presented the candidates to their customers, but the mega-retailer is presenting their customers' concerns back to the candidates as they enter the final stretch before election day on November 6th. The Walmart Community YouTube channel features more video interviews with Walmart moms stopped while shopping, while the Walmart Community Votes website encourages them to register, vote and be heard.
Posted by Shirley Brady on November 1, 2012 10:19 AM
Eager to not let Superstorm Sandy lay waste to their presidential campaigns, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are back in full swing today. Romney is campaigning in Virginia, while Obama is planning to appeal to "middle class security." Both campaigns also resumed
The Obama campaign released a TV commercial featuring "last week's powerful endorsement from retired four star general and former Secretary of State Colin Powell," while the Romney campaign released the TV commercial below, which makes light of Obama's announcement that he might appoint a Secretary of Business ("His solution to everything is to add another bureaucrat.") Click here for more on political branding in this U.S. election cycle.Continue reading...