brand news

In the News: Microsoft, Facebook, AT&T and more

Posted by Dale Buss on February 4, 2014 09:08 AM

In the News

Microsoft confirms rumored frontrunner Satya Nadella as new CEO. Bill Gates is stepping down as chairman but remaining on the board.

Facebook celebrates 10 years by thanking its 1.23 billion members as rumored "teen problem" may be overblown

AT&T hails Olympians with new app.

Lenovo and Sony reportedly eye PC business alliance.

Nestle sells PowerBarMusashi brands to Post.

Alfa Romeo names new rear-wheel drive platform “Giorgio.”

AppleMicrosoft join carriers in $750M pledge to education.

Apple is reportedly building out its own content delivery network.Continue reading...

The Big Game

For Food and Bev, Super Bowl Will Be a Battle of the Brands

Posted by Dale Buss on January 29, 2014 06:50 PM

No doubt Scarlett Johansson's ad for Sodastream will be among the most-anticipated of the the big game on Sunday. Cheerios' reprise of its mixed-race family will strike some of the most emotional cords. And a Budweiser spot featuring a puppy and a Clydesdale might convert a lot of snack-table napkins into makeshift hankies.

But more impressive than all of those things individually is the likelihood that food and beverage brands finally will rival automakers as the highest-impact vertical choosing to advertise in the Super Bowl this year. (Watch some of the Big Game spots that have already released below.)

One brand in particular, Pepsi, has a lot riding on the Super Bowl—so much in fact that the brand launched a seperate lead-in campaign to build up excitement for the Pepsi-sponsored halftime show.

"The heart and soul of our brand is pop culture and sports and music," Simon Lowden, CMO of Pepsi Beverages North America, told brandchannel. "And there's no better event than the Super Bowl to bring that to life."

The Big Game will be a major platform for Pepsi's tack to what it is calling a "master brand" strategy in which it treats the variety of Pepsi products as a single brand rather than calling out individual products as has been its tendency.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Microsoft, Google, Apple and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 27, 2014 09:14 AM

In the News

Microsoft posts record sales as Ballmer prepares exit; competes with Amazon on cloud storage prices; admits to Syrian Electric Army email breach; and releases global study on power of technology.

Google pushes back against data localization, faces protest in San Francisco, buys artificial intelligence startup DeepMind and announces global patent agreement with Samsung.

Apple reportedly eyes mobile payments service, as hopes are high for Q1 earnings release on Monday.

AIG says it’s on offense as corp rep restored.

AT&T quashes rumors of Vodafone bid.

Accenture tries to grab STEM graduates early.

Ally Financial readies pre-IPO roadshow.Continue reading...

ad watch

Super Bowl Who? FIFA's World Cup is the Biggest Ad Game in the World

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 22, 2014 06:39 PM

America's biggest ad derby may be the Super Bowl, but the entire globe has the World Cup, an event, as Ad Age puts it, that is like "having the Super Bowl every day for an entire month.” 

Ad deals related to the Cup are bringing in enormous amounts of money—much more than the $4 million-per-spot price tag of this year's 30-second Super Bowl ads. Brazil’s largest TV network, Globo, which has exclusive broadcast rights for the Cup, has struck deals with eight major companies—AmBev, Coca-Cola, Banco Itau, Johnson & Johnson, Hyundai, Nestle, wireless business Oi and local retailer Magazine Luiza—that will see the companies pay out a combined $600 million in order to occupy “451 thirty-second TV commercials, hundreds of quick mentions with visuals when announcers talk about World Cup games, and 359 5-second commercials created by Globo that feature four marketers at a time and run at the beginning and end of soccer games and other programming, and during commercial breaks,” Ad Age reports. 

And that’s just what Globo is getting. Networks across the world are getting nearly as big a piece of the ad pie. After all, at least 1 billion people watched the final of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and 3.2 billion caught part of the Cup at some point during the month.Continue reading...

brand vs. brand

KitKat Presses On Abroad Despite Continued Legal Troubles

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 21, 2014 04:58 PM

Kit Kat and Cadbury have had their fair share of squabbles. Most recently, Nestle's KitKat blocked Mondelez-owned Cadbury from trademarking its signature purple hue that it has used for years, but now Cadbury has struck back.

The UK's biggest chocolate maker has been trying to block KitKat from trademarking the shape of its candy bars—which has been in use since about 1935—in the UK. The case is now being reviewed by the European Union Court of Justice in Luxembourg. Nestle already holds the trademark for the bar in the rest of Europe. 

But the legal wrangling hasn't kept KitKat from furthering its brand.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Nestle, PepsiCo, Twitter and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 21, 2014 09:08 AM

In the News

Nestle opens world's first Kit Kat boutique in Tokyo as Cadbury keeps fighting candy bar's trademark shape in UK.

PepsiCo axes stevia-sweetened Gatorade products as Mtn. Dew plans big spending boost behind Kickstart and Diet Dew.

Twitter makes racial diversity an ad-selling point.

AT&T plans to take orders this week for new flexible-screen smartphone from LG.

Build-a-Bear appoints new CMO and "brand bear."

Burger King wins free primetime Super Bowl radio ads in UK.

Facebook sees leveling off of decline in teens.

Ford embarks on quality push in time to improve before important '14 product launches.

Infiniti eyes bolder sub-brand.

Intel sells under-developed online-TV line to Verizon.

Jeep eyes 37 percent sales boost this year as feds end controversial recall investigation of Grand Cherokee and Liberty models.Continue reading...

chew on this

Will a 3D-Printed Hershey Kiss Taste As Good—Or Better?

Posted by Dale Buss on January 17, 2014 04:49 PM

As Hershey and its Reese's Peanut Butter Cup franchise brace for a Super Bowl marketing push for the new Butterfinger Peanut Butter Cup from Nestle, it's not like Hershey is just standing still bracing for the impact. The venerable chocolate brand created a new brand for China, for example.

And now Hershey is trying to harness one of the hottest digital technologies, 3D printing. Three-dimensional printing, of course, involves the layered deposition—or "printing"—of just about any material following a digital pattern of minuscule detail.

There's no reason food can't be printed like anything else in this technology. NASA, for instance has spent $125,000 funding a 3D pizza printer that could potentially be used to prepare space food, according to Fast Company.Continue reading...

The Big Game

Enjoy the Super Bowl Tease? Butterfinger May Be Your Best Bet This Year

Posted by Dale Buss on January 16, 2014 07:12 PM

With GoDaddy.com and Axe forgoing their recent Big Game titillations this year in favor of more serious outreaches to their respective demographic targets, a perhaps-unlikely CPG brand apparently will be coming to the aid of Super Bowl viewers who count on some adverteasing along with their football.

Nestle-owned Butterfinger will air its first-ever Super Bowl spot on February 2 for its new Butterfinger Peanut Butter Cups, and its teaser suggests that the ad will be what USA Today called "racy." The video online now shows a couple—peanut butter and chocolate—seeking couples counseling for their relational woes.

Among other snippets, the previous patients, cheese and crackers, are seen emerging from the therapist's office fondling a salami and snickering. The therapist jokes with the sweet and salty couple, "Don't you think it would be nice to try something new—and crunchy?"Continue reading...

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