Best Global Green Brands 2014

week in review

Top 10 Stories of the Week: ALS and Brands, P&G, Gen Z and more

Posted by brandchannel staff on August 22, 2014 08:12 PM

Our most-read blog posts of the week:

#1 It's On! How the Ice Bucket Challenge is Benefiting ALS—and Brands

#2 Storyteller-in-Chief: A Conversation With Levi's Global CMO Jennifer Sey

#3 No Brands are Safe as Lafley Takes Apart P&G to Rebuild It

#4 Clif Bar vs. KIND: A Clear Case of Trademark Infringement?

#5 Sir MYX a Lot: Nicki Minaj Just Changed Music Video Product Placement

#6 Never Mind Millennials—Gen Z May Be the Hardest Marketing Nut to Crack

#7 Target, Finally Getting Canada, is Really Sorry

#8 Can Facial-Mapping Take the Beauty Industry to a New Level?

#9 McDonald's Searches for a New Positive with More Menu Options

#10 Intel On the Outside: New Partnerships Could Yield Future in Wearable Tech

trademark wars

Trademark Watch: Coinye Gets Caught, Seattle's 12, Washington ____ and more

Posted by Nicole Briggs on August 22, 2014 07:14 PM

From the lyrics of Yeezus himself, “Oh when it all, it all falls down, I’m telling you all, it all falls down," and earlier this week it all fell down for the virtual currency Coinye in Kanye West’s triumphant trademark-infringement lawsuit.

Back in January, the famous rapper sued websites involving the operators of Coinye, the logo for a web-based currency. Coinye featured a cartoon likeness of Kanye West, in half-man, half-fish form, wearing West's signature shutter sunglasses.

On Wednesday, West won a default judgment against the operators of Coinye when the defendants failed to timely respond to the allegations, and permanently banned them from the “Kanye West” mark or any parody of it. In July, cases against four other defendants were settled out of court.Continue reading...

executive decision

McDonald's Pins Turnaround Hopes on New US Operations President

Posted by Dale Buss on August 22, 2014 06:41 PM

When you're one of the most iconic brands in the world but sales are in a prolonged slump, you don't have any new hit products, not much you're doing seems to be working and even the government of Russia is doing you no favors, it might be time to throw up the white flag. But you're McDonald's, and you've got to keep going.

In that spirit, McDonald's has apparently nudged out its US president, Jeff Stratton, in favor of bringing in an ex-McDonald's executive who most recently was CEO of the Logan's Roadhouse chain, Mike Andres. The new president of McDonald's USA had success earlier in his career as president of McDonald's central division from 2010 to 2012 and, before that, as CEO of Boston Market, which then was a McDonald's subsidiary.

It's not too much of a reach to think that Andres, who will report directly to McDonald's CEO Don Thompson, could be positioned as his successor. If Thompson, in charge since mid-2012, can't turn things around, and Andres succeeds in jump-starting results at the chain's important but troubled domestic division, the switch could be obvious.Continue reading...

brand partners

All You Can Sleep: Airbnb, IKEA Team Up for One-Night Event in Australia

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 22, 2014 05:14 PM

Most consumers who use Airbnb are generally expecting to find themselves sleeping in a house or apartment, but a few lucky Australians may wake up in an IKEA.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the two brands have partnered up for a social experiment of sorts: a one-night-only slumber party in one of the retailer’s locations in Sydney. A group of lucky guests will be selected to spend the night of August 31 in the store, getting to choose from bedrooms sets like "rustic charm, inner city living or moden elegance." They'll get to keep the sheets and pay only a $12 administration fee to Airbnb, but they will have to endure a communal dinner. Swedish meatballs, anyone?

"Airbnb gives people access to the most unique listings around the world from treehouses to yurts to villas, and now we're adding IKEA to the list," Eva Ross, Local Operations Lead at Airbnb Australia, said in a statement. "The experience is sure to thrill any guest."Continue reading...

car talk

Kia Brings Hamsters Back to Raves, But What About the Soul EV?

Posted by Dale Buss on August 22, 2014 03:53 PM

Kia is bringing back its popular hamsters in a new TV ad campaign. While there has been criticism that the first commercial is sort of creepy, Kia might encounter a bigger challenge as it touts the new 2015 electrified version of its Soul model: to mix mammalian metaphors, is the brand barking up the wrong tree with this vehicle?

For now, Kia is generating excitement with the news that it is bringing back the six-year-old crew of hamsters that have entertained Super Bowl TV audiences, among others. They will be promoting the Soul EV with a music-harged commercial featuring Maroon 5's new single, "Animals," and a story line that has the lovable rodents creating sexy hamster companions in the laboratory. There's also a free iPad app that lets users digitally investigate the new car's features.

The ad will debut on the MTV Video Music Awards this Sunday. Michael Sprague, Kia's North American chief, told USA Today that the spot will tap into "geek chic" as it focuses on lab-bound hamsters at first attempting to transform a gas-powered Soul into an EV—and ending up creating a leggy female of their species.Continue reading...

branded content

Branded Content Watch: Gatorade, Royal Caribbean, NRA and more

Posted by Abe Sauer on August 22, 2014 02:07 PM

This week in branded content, Gatorade gets sweaty, one Manning brother is back, and beards make babies cry. Check out the latest from Royal Caribbean, EA Sports, Fanta and more.

The Project: Coffee vs Gangs by Kenco

The Pitch: The campaign explains Kenco's initiative to train young Hondurans who are at risk of being sucked into gangs as coffee farmers. Kenco says it is "trying not to do things that are just a badging exercise," but that the brand is attempting to communicate a "real purpose."

The Verdict: Whether you think this campaign is bold or exploitative, you have to admit animated tattoos are incredibly cool.Continue reading...

social marketing

It's All in the Numbers: Instagram, Tumblr Step Up Metrics for Brands

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 22, 2014 12:36 PM

With marketers pouring buckets of cash and resources into social media campaigns, everyone's wondering: Does it work?

Instagram is now offering a new three-pronged dashboard, the first suite of real-time, self-serve tools for marketers to manage their Instagram accounts and understand the impact of their campaigns.

The “ad insights” tool tracks performance via impressions, reach and engagement, while a second, “account insights,” delivers data on non-paid content posted. A third “ad staging” tool enables previews of creative before it goes live on Instagram.

"An advertiser will now have access to a real-time campaign summary and data showing how their target audience is responding to each of their sponsored photos," Instagram said in a blog post. "Also, brand marketers will be able to better understand the best time of day to post a photo or video."

While Instagram had previously been providing brands with reports about their campaigns, that data is now available directly to them.Continue reading...

bc q&a

Money Tree: 5 Questions with CMO Sean O'Reilly on Peachtree Financial Solutions

Posted by Shirley Brady on August 22, 2014 11:12 AM

For consumers that suddenly come into a cash windfall, it can be a confusing time. That's where Peachtree Financial Solutions comes in. The brand, a sister company of J.G. Wentworth under parent JGWPT Holdings, recently refreshed its brand identity with a renewed focus on customer service. 

The refreshed brand, which debuted earlier this month, is centered around "The Peachtree Promise," six core attributes of the brand that define the way Peachtree representatives handle customer care. With an improved customer experience woven throughout the new website and into the brand's core offerings, there's no doubt that Peachtree is eager to share its refreshed brand with consumers across the US. 

brandchannel Editor-in-Chief Shirley Brady chatted with Sean O'Reilly, SVP and CMO of JGWPT Holdings, about the brand's new look—and outlook.Continue reading...

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