Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 12, 2013 10:31 AM
During both of President Obama's election bids, supporters received emails every few days asking for donations to help the cause, even it was just a couple of bucks. And in the wake of his initial victory, donors gladly gave more to help fund his inauguration. Obama capped personal donations at $50,000, however, and no corporate donations were allowed.
Monday's inauguration was quite a different story, with corporations throwing in a reported total of $50 million to make it all happen after an election campaign that cost more than $1 billion. (Lobbyists and political action committees remained excluded from the inaugural funding process.)
As a result, Washingtonians saw visitors wandering around the city with bags sporting the inaugural seal on one side and the AT&T logo on the other. AT&T forked over a good deal of money to be an official sponsor, even though the company's political wing gave $5,000 to the Romney campaign and company chairman Randall Stephenson gave $30,000 to the Republican National Committee last year.
Other corporations that donated to the inauguration included Southern Company, United Therapeutics, Centene Corp., Financial Innovations, Inc., Genentech, Microsoft, and Stream Line Circle, LLC, Politico reported.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 16, 2012 11:52 AM
As restaurant brand executives cut jobs and announced their intentions to raise prices in the wake of President Obama's re-election, no one can say they weren't forewarned.
Chains such as Papa John's are explicitly tying their actions to the costs of Obamacare, while other brands — including GE Healthcare and Virgin Airlines — also are announcing job cuts as a result of their expectations for a continuation of U.S. economic sluggishness in the wake of the voting results.
Papa John's CEO John Schnatter has been the most outspoken. The Mitt Romney backer has said that he'll raise the price of a pizza pie by 10 to 14 cents as well as slash employee hours — but it's not, he says, because of the two million pizzas he's giving away, but due to the cotss of Obamacare. He's not alone. A Denny's franchisee in Florida, John Metz, said that he plans to add a five-percent surcharge to his customers' bills and also to reduce his employees' hours.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 8, 2012 12:54 PM
In an historic victory, Maryland upheld the legalization of same-sex marriage yesterday and the city of Baltimore has jumped on board with a dedicated microsite for same-sex couples eager to get hitched, just as New York State reached out to LGBT couples looking to get married last year.
All the details are in one place, such as how to obtain a marriage license, wedding venues and vendors, and information on TAG-approved accommodations. "We encourage the LGBT community to visit Baltimore to celebrate their commitments to one another," said Tom Noonan, president and CEO of Visit Baltimore. "As a city, we have long been proud to support the rights and equality of our visitors, and the legalization of same-sex marriage is another important step forward."
The Maryland referendum (Question 6) asked voters in the state's general election on November 6 to vote "For" or "Against" the Civil Marriage Protection Act, passed by the Maryland General Assembly in February 2012 and signed on March 1, 2012, by Governor Martin O'Malley permitting same-sex couples to marry beginning January 1, 2013.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on November 7, 2012 02:02 PM
During the now concluded contentious presidential election, the subject of manufacturing — specifically, the geological location of it — was a major topic of battle. One story to come out of all of the China-stealing-US-jobs talk was "reshoring," or the common declaration of "the return of manufacturing."
Maybe because of its fashionable profile, the garment industry has been in particular focus. Newsworthy instances include the US Olympic team's made-in-China uniforms by Ralph Lauren and conservative pundit Glenn Beck's launch of 1791, his flag-waving denim line.
But clothing brand Carhartt has been making its clothing in the US since, well, forever. And now its is working to make this fact more a part of its message.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 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...
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...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 31, 2012 03:48 PM
The arrival of Superstorm Sandy has brought an American brand that plenty like to forget about back into the spotlight. FEMA, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency, is generally not heard from as it goes about its business helping people recover from one nasty situation or another.
But when the agency flubs, as it famously did during its disastrous efforts after Hurricane Katrina in August of 2005, its name brings in a lot of bad publicity. After Sandy hit American soil and began devastating buildings and lives, FEMA was in action. As if on cue, Michael Brown, the man who had headed the agency during those Katrina days and resigned in disgrace in the month after the storm, appeared in Denver’s Westword magazine to talk about how President Obama had already blown it by meeting with FEMA on Sunday and having a press conference.Continue reading...