Posted by Dale Buss on February 6, 2013 09:06 AM
Disney sees higher TV ad revenues drive quarter and considers ESPN exit from U.K. sports coverage.
Dell seeks to transform brand, going private in $24 billion buyout under founder Michael Dell, as Microsoft gambles on involvement.
U.S. Postal Service plans to cut Saturday mail as Hallmark fights the cuts.
Apple loses right to iPhone brand in Brazil.
Arby's launches "fan of the week" promo via Facebook.
Lance Armstrong reportedly under investigation for obstruction and other serious crimes.
BP is hit by new $34 billion claim from U.S. state governments over Gulf spill.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 25, 2013 09:01 AM
AOL plans to distribute Discovery channels as its Huffington Post flip flops on Goldman Sachs.
Animal Planet finds room for Geico and other advertisers in annual Super Bowl "Puppy Bowl."
Ann Taylor brings back actress Kate Hudson as ambassador and designer.
Apple plans to offer broader guidance on earnings as it must fight to maintain dominance of iPhone.
Audi releases Super Bowl commercial with alternate endings for YouTube voting.
Boeing faces of extended inquiry by authorities into Dreamliner fires.
Bristol settles Hepatitis C claims.
Burger King drops firm that supplied horse meat in UK.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 10, 2013 12:47 PM
Hasbro's iconic game of Monopoly has taken on a bit of the feeling of Clue these days. Before the year is out, Monopoly players will need to say goodbye to one of their beloved playing pieces. Will it be the wheelbarrow, the thimble, or the shoe? Surely, nobody would willingly toss the dog, top hat, or racecar. Do the clothes iron and battleship have what it takes to stick around?
Like Clue, this mystery will be solved by those playing the game. Hasbro is fans consumers to weigh in on the Monopoly Facebook page and decide not only which playing piece isn’t even good enough to set itself on the lowly Mediterranean Avenue, but which one should replace it. The choices vary from diamond ring, guitar, toy robot, cat, or helicopter. Fans worldwide (the game is available in 111 countries and 43 languages) can vote once a day through Feb. 5.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 28, 2012 12:43 PM
For any foreign brand that wants to become better known in America, partnering with one that already is renowned and made in the U.S.A. can be a great strategy. So that's what Fiat is doing by participating in the 20th anniversary of the Monopoly Game contest at McDonald's.
And, of course, Fiat hasn't chosen to partner with America's leading fast-food chain on just anything. The Monopoly promotion — in which customers peel game pieces from drinks and other selected menu items to collect property sets or win instant prizes, in-store and online — has become as iconic in its association with McDonald's as the Big Mac and Mayor McCheese.
That's just the point for Fiat. The brand and its minicars, new to the U.S. market over just the last year or so after a many-year hiatus, still are seeking more traction in American media and culture, competing with many other brands and against the fact that Americans still tend to favor bigger cars.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on February 15, 2012 12:04 PM
Today is the final day of the Toy Industry Association's 109th annual Toy Fair, wrapping up in New York with a power surge of touchscreens, apps and other tech-based entertainment (or edutainment) items designed to engage young minds — and open their elders' wallets. At a time when toy sales have been stagnant for the past several years, major toymakers and upstarts alike were banking on the whiz bang of tablets, interactivity, and apps to lift the industry from its doldrums.
This year's Toy of the Year at the fair is symbolic of the direction the industry is taking: LeapFrog's LeapPad Explorer Tablet, a $99 kid's version of a computer tablet introduced last February that was so popular retailers couldn't keep it in stock during the 2011 holiday selling season. LeapPad also won "Educational Toy of the Year" and "Preschool Toy of the Year."
The two leading toymakers, Hasbro and Mattel, both debuted app-related products at the Toy Fair. Hasbro updated its clasic board game, "The Game of Life," by promoting a version ("The Game of Life zAPPed," which is available now for $25) that resides on an iPad — literally. Download the app, place your iPad on the middle of the board and it serves as the "spinner" as swell as adding interactive games and videos to the fun.
Mattel's big entry into app-land is "Apptivity," a whole new toy line that turns the iPad into a live board game, by integrating such popular toys as Barbie dolls and Hot Wheel cars with tablet-based games. A child can race one of the new Hot Wheel cars on the screen of an iPad, or use Apptivity to enhance Cut the Rope, Fruit Ninja and Angry Birds game play.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on February 13, 2012 03:03 PM
The Chicago Auto Show that opened to the public over the weekend provided confirmation that, the way brands selling cars in the U.S. market see it, 2012 is the year for a return to performance and fun.
Despite gasoline prices that remain stubbornly high at around $3.50 a gallon, and a continued proliferation of relatively staid hybrid and all-electric new models, automakers are emphasizing horsepower and design flair with what they're highlighting this year at the annual Chicago show:Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on December 22, 2011 06:05 PM
It's the time for end of the year lists and Nielsen’s "Tops of 2011: Advertising" collection is certainly worth a look.
The media tracking firm covers everything from Volkswagen’s Little Darth Vader Super Bowl phenomenon to product placement. Nielsen says these "best-liked ads reflect the enduring value of traditional ad elements that have withstood the test of time – strong creative, simple and engaging messaging, and a solid emotional connection."
The Nielsen charts that caught our eye were the two pertaining to product placement, because both tell us almost nothing about measuring product placement except to underscore how nobody can properly measure product placement.Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on November 14, 2011 10:01 AM
The McDonald's juggernaut just keeps going. Global same-store sales were up 5.5 percent in October, fueled by the chain's popular annual Monopoly promotion (this year featuring LeBron James), featured products such as the McRib in the United States, and strong performance in international markets.
And now, eager to protect that solid growth, McDonald's is hatching a plan for how it will continue to defy the mature-company label in the future. Its three-pronged growth plan includes a continued emphasis on menu options, on modernizing the customer experience, and on broadening access to its stores, CEO Jim Skinner told attendees at its Investor Day conference last week.
McDonald's so-called Plan to Win strategy is similar in terms of concept and success to the One Ford plan that Ford CEO Alan Mulally hatched a few years ago and has carried out with great success. There's nothing that can push a company through the kind of awful stretch suffered by the global economy lately like a visionary CEO with a well thought-out plan, who executes with deliberation and determination. Alan Mulally, meet Jim Skinner.Continue reading...