brands under fire
Posted by Ben Berkon on May 24, 2013 06:36 PM
Mega tech manufacturer Foxconn has been in the negative spotlight a lot over the past few months. Despite once being the main manufacturer for Apple products—as well as a significant player for Hewlettt-Packard, and to a lesser extent, Sony, Dell and Acer—Apple recently decided to take their iPhone 4S and iPad mini business to Taiwanese competitor, Pegatron. Apple has also promised to eventually bring a chunk of their manufacturing work back to the United States to help create new jobs.
Unfortunately, Foxconn was thrust back into the spotlight recently as reports of three employee suicides surfaced. While Foxconn is hardly the only Chinese or global company to be accused of archaic and dangerous labor conditions, the recent suicides mark a new low in the category, especially since the company had previously come under fire and had supposedly reformed many of its practices.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 24, 2013 05:49 PM
Kmart is on a roll with humorous ad messaging with a follow-up to its viral "Ship My Pants" ad. The retailer released "Big Gas Savings" and the spot has already racked up nearly 1.5 million views. The campaign touts the benefits of the brand's Shop Your Way rewards program, which offers free shipping and discounts at Kmart gas pumps.
A promise of 30 cents on the gallon savings, coupled with talent and wordplay on “big gas” may signal a continuing theme for Kmart with creative produced on these two ads from DraftFCB, but rival McCann is in the mix pitching for the account going forward.
Here's a few more ads and campaigns that caught our eye this week:Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 24, 2013 05:22 PM
Mike's Hard Looking For More Love
Lemonade is generally considered something for the summertime and even just for picnics, so Mike’s Hard Lemonade, after 14 years on the market, is aiming to inform consumers that there are plenty of other times to drink the stuff, too. The brand’s new campaign features offbeat commercials that are set in traditionally beer-drinking locales and end with the tagline “It’s never not a good time for a Mike’s Lemonade.”
“We’re looking at a traditional beer consumer, which is a natural fit for Mike’s,” Sanjiv Gajiwala, the director of marketing for Mike’s, told The New York Times. The brand has its work cut out for it since research has shown that 21 percent of men “would not want to be seen” holding a fruity malt beverage while only 11 percent of women felt the same way, MSN reports.
The brand will spend between $15 million and $20 million on the campaign, up from its overall 2012 advertising budget of $13.3 million, the Times notes.Continue reading...
week in review
Posted by Michael Waltzer on May 24, 2013 04:30 PM
Our most-read blog posts of the week:
#1 Has Apple Lost Its Groove?
#2 Kellogg's Special K Makes a Bid for Healthy Foodies with New Nourish Line
#3 Procter & Gamble Reviews Marketing ROI
#4 Walmart Hopes 'Gamification' Can Engage Employees and Turn Things Around
#5 Ford's EcoBoost Brand Threatened by More Performance Problems, Complaints
#6 Mercedes-Benz Sets the Luxury Bar Sky High with S-Class Reveal
#7 Tech Hungry Target Eyes Crowded Streaming Space with Launch of Target Ticket
#8 Coke Squashes Another Round of Secret Recipe Rumors
#9 Nike Introduces New Jerseys for Team England in First-Time Partnership
#10 McDonald's Tries 'Less Is More' with New Menu Reductions
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on May 24, 2013 04:20 PM
Corporate mea culpas seem to be all the rage these days. But not at McDonald's. And not by CEO Don Thompson—or Ronald McDonald, for that matter.
Presiding for the first time over an annual meeting of McDonald's, Thompson spent a good deal of the time not discussing McDonald's sluggish growth or intensifying menu shuffling but simply defending the chain against charges that it's a bad corporate citizen because it sells and markets its food to kids.
Several speakers associated with Corporate Accountability International, a nonprofit corporate watchdog, grilled Thompson about the topic, accusing McDonald's of targeting kids, targeting children of color, undermining children's health and of contributing greatly to the country's obesity problem.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 24, 2013 03:36 PM
Google is on the move, expanding its two-month old Google Shopping Express, its challenger in same-delivery service to eBay Now and Amazon Prime. The service is rolling out in the San Francisco Bay Area and beta tester sign-up is now open.
Mashable reports the delivery service has "been doing well enough and worked out the kinks to expand a little more." The expansion will include more products from retail partners, improved 360-degree images for product browsing and a bigger fleet of third-party couriers. Despite the success, the service faces some steep competition. “Google faces tough competition from more established businesses and startups in the space—not to mention the fact that Google has a mixed track record when it comes to commerce,” notes Mashable.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 24, 2013 02:42 PM
Millions of credit cards are swiped each day in America, meaning Visa and MasterCard are raking in big bucks from retailers daily under the current fee structure. Following a dispute over the swipe fees, Visa and MasterCard were prepping to pay out a $7.2 billion settlement to retailers, but now, the brands and the National Retail Federation have denied the settlement and instead have decided to sue the credit companies.
Macy's, Target, Office Max, JCPenney, Kohl’s, Saks, and about a dozen other big retailers have banded together and sued Visa and MasterCard, Reuters reports. Walmart and 18 other retailers didn’t get in on the suit, but will “consider pursuing separate legal actions over damages.”Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on May 24, 2013 01:01 PM
"During the past year, much attention has been focused on me from several angles, which has been a distraction that is not in our best interests. When we get to a point where too much attention becomes a distraction, it's time to change that dynamic."
That statement to Procter & Gamble employees (as reported by Ad Age) by Bob McDonald was cited as the primary reason he's stepping down from the world's largetst consumer packaged goods company after 33 years and making room for his old boss, A.G. Lafley, to retake the reins.
Here's a look back at the past year for McDonald and P&G, as reported on brandchannel:Continue reading...