charge your batteries
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 29, 2012 11:04 AM
It used to be that if someone wanted to get close to a storm, they had to be one of those crazy storm chaser people immortalized in the film, “Twister.” Now, through the wonder of technology, consumers can overstuff their brains with up-to-the-second storm info, while officials warn citizens to not rush into harm's way just to take a cool pic for Instagram. Who needs a police scanner?
Of course, in today’s branded world, it should surprise no one that all those new tools that help everybody see what Hurricane Sandy is up to are also tools to help brands share their name as well. Google created an interactive crisis map that offers, as Fast Company notes, “weather updates, evacuation routes, and information that Google hopes will help people stuck in the path of the storm as well as those out of danger who are monitoring the situation.” New York City’s chief digital officer, Rachel Haot, expressed her thanks on Twitter.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on October 26, 2012 02:02 PM
China is the second latest economy in the world, every significant brand's future is impacted by its growth (or collapse!); but who's got the time?! A weekly potpourri of ten reads that will make you look like a keen China observer during any conversation about China. This week, starting with Angry Birds coming to McDonald's China ... Continue reading...
games people play
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 23, 2012 04:55 PM
When Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops video game went on sale back in November 2010, more than 5.6 million units had been sold. The United States was responsible for 4.2 million of those sales, which passed $1 billion after only six weeks.
And now, hold onto your joysticks and step to the side, here comes Black Ops II. Set to be released on Nov. 13, the next installment is on track to be another blockbuster. The trailer above has received more than three million views since it was released on Oct. 16.
To mark the occasion and generate even more interest in the gamer world (as if it needed any), Activision and JJ Abrams' BadRobot Interactive collaborated to develop a new update to the Action Movie FX app, which allows gamers to get some of their weapons for the game earlier than its release.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 15, 2012 04:55 PM
An estimated 3,000 kids die daily, and more than 3.5 million children do not live to the age of five, largely due to diarrhea and pneumonia – both manageable with soap and water. People worldwide wash their hands with water, but far too few use soap, particularly at crucial moments such as after using the toilet, cleaning a child, or before handling food.
In 2008, Unilever, its Lifebuoy soap brand, and Population Services International (PSI) joined forces to declare October 15th Global Handwashing Day. Last year, the public-private partnership produced a PSA starring actress Mandy Moore, among other efforts.
This year's Global Handwashing Day bring a new partnership with the Millennium Villages Project, a joint effort by the Earth Institute at Columbia University and the United Nations Development Program. The PSA simply asks for support for an initiative working with 500,000 people in rural villages across ten countries in sub-Saharan Africa as part of a bigger goal to reach one billion people:Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 5, 2012 10:31 AM
Starbucks is facing increasing competition from all quarters, including Dunkin' Donuts and McDonald's, so the giant of the coffee biz is hoping to increase its market share with innovative new products and brand extensions, with a major focus on mobile going forward.
On the brand extension front, the java giant just started selling its single-serve coffee and espresso maker Verismo online. The caffeinated masses are apparently into it. Cliff Burrows, president of the Americas for Starbucks, says that sales of the machine have “exceeded expectations.” Starbucks is now rolling the product out to 4,300 stores and should finish having them in place in the next few weeks.
“Innovation is so important to us,” Burrows told the Houston Chronicle. “In 2009 we introduced ready-brew instant coffee. This summer we introduced Refreshers, energy drinks made from green coffee extract. We make them hand-crafted, sell them in cans and as instant beverages. Our innovation is ongoing.”Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 4, 2012 12:11 PM
There is a moment in time when preadolescent boys come across ads for X-ray and they are convinced that their late-night dreams have come true: An easy way to see through the clothing of any nearby woman has become available to them.
Of course, the whole thing is a sham, but the idea of being able to see through walls and clothes and everything else is fun to try on for a while. And now, of course, like everything else, there is an app for that.
The good folks at Wonderbra are happy to help the citizens of the United Kingdom see just what’s underneath what one particular woman is wearing, and she just happens to be Brazilian supermodel Adriana Cernanova.
Wonderbra's UK advertising (watch below) and French campaign is featuring a QR code so viewers can download an app and use their “Wonderbra Decoder” to see on their phones just what she’s got on underneath. Surprise! It’s all made by Wonderbra.
“We are showing Adriana in her clothes, including simple jeans and t-shirt, and through our new and unique app, consumers can reveal the Wonderbra behind the look,” said Martina Alexander, marketing manager for Wonderbra, according to Mobile Entertainment. “It’s really female-friendly and links to the outfit, which was important to us.”Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on September 28, 2012 11:21 AM
Apple CEO Tim Cook has apologized for the iOS 6 Maps kerfuffle, following the brand's eviction of Google Maps and proprietary (but glitchy) maps function — one of the key features consumers demand from their smartphones. Google, meanwhile, just upgraded its maps app with high-resolution aerial views.
A contrite Apple posted the apology online (read the full text below) in a mea culpa that the Financial Times calls "a rare moment of contrition from the world's most valuable company," and — unexpectedly — suggested installing rivals' map apps "while we're improving Maps." Cook's personal apology for "mapgate" also raised comparisons to how Steve Jobs handled the iPhone 4 "antennagate," for which the company — but not Jobs personally — apologized.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 25, 2012 11:11 AM
You've heard of guerrilla marketing — how about gorilla marketing? The Rolling Stones have a greatest hits album that's being released on Nov. 12 called GRRR!, featuring a gorilla on the cover with the band's iconic "big lips logo" superimposed on its face. So don’t be alarmed when you see large images of the cheeky gorilla popping up around the world to promote the album.
The gorillas are taking over 50 cities and 3,000+ locations around the globe, being tagged on such landmarks as Sydney's Opera House, New York’s Empire State Building and London’s Elizabeth Tower (that’s Big Ben to all of you who missed the renaming for Her Majesty). They can be seen in 3D augmented reality via mobile devices that have downloaded UView's app, so fans can "watch the stunning GRRR! artwork fully realized in 3D animation right before their eyes .... some exciting content and have the chance to enter an exclusive competition plus pre-order a copy of GRRR!"
As part of the marketing stunt that's billed as the "biggest global Augmented Reality music campaign" to date, the Stones are encouraging fans to take pics of the gorillas and tweet them with the #GRRR! hashtag to the Stones’ Twitter feed, @RollingStones. The photos will also show up on an interactive wall on the Rolling Stones website.
That #GRRR hashtag is more commonly used on Twitter, by the way, to express frustration — which is what real gorilla lovers are feeling.Continue reading...