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branded content

Branded Content Watch: Hornbach Goes Goth, Gucci Chases Kate and more

Posted by Abe Sauer on September 12, 2014 06:14 PM

This week in branded content, Hansel gets cracker crackin' as Nike and Reebok look back to look forward. Check out the latest branded videos from Gucci, Nescafe, Sunbeam and more after the jump.Continue reading...

brand and bottle

Bud Light's Whatever is a ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Brand Campaign

Posted by Abe Sauer on September 12, 2014 05:46 PM

As if sent by Snapchat, the new light beer campaigns accompanying a new football season are too often self-erasing. Remember Bud Light's campaign "theme" last football season? Miller Lite's? Coors'? We didn't think so.

Aside from occasional great Super Bowl ads and Bud's "Wassssssup?" home run, mainstream beer advertising is insipid, loud, fast, still often shockingly chauvinistic, overly complicated and, worst of all, brand interchangeable. Is it any wonder sales of craft and imported beer brands, which offer substance and character, have skyrocketed, especially among Millennials?

Now along comes Bud Light with "Whatever," perhaps the most appropriately named mainstream beer campaign ever. Luckily for Bud, its Whatever campaign is turning out to be somewhat memorable. Unluckily for Bud, it's because it's for the wrong reasons. And yes, Vanilla Ice—yes, that one—is involved. Continue reading...

brand trainwrecks

RadioShack Finds Its Frequency Fading as Bankruptcy Becomes Probable

Posted by Dale Buss on September 12, 2014 04:36 PM

RadioShack lost about 20 percent of its regular sales this summer compared with a year ago, and nothing else really matters to the struggling retailer.

So for the moment, RadioShack has given up most talk about its new products, merchandising and promotional gambits and is just focusing on corporate survival; it can worry about that other stuff later. New CEO Joe Magnacca told Wall Street this week that RadioShack soon will run out of cash and could be forced to turn to bankruptcy court if it can't find a financial lifeline from some new investor or creditor.

The 20-percent sales drop excluded newly opened or closed stores and left RadioShack with just $31 million in cash on August 2—or as the Wall Street Journal calculated, only about $6,800 in the figurative till of each of its 4,485 stores.Continue reading...

week in review

Top 10 Stories of the Week: Apple, Starbucks, HBO and more

Posted by brandchannel staff on September 12, 2014 04:35 PM

Our most-read blog posts of the week:

#1 Apple Naming Evolves With Move From iThings to Things

#2 Geek Chic: Wearable Tech on the Runway at New York Fashion Week

#3 Time's Up: Apple Unveils Larger iPhones, Wows with Apple Watch and Payments

#4 Starbucks Launches New Store Formats to Sell Coffee Up and Down Price Scale

#5 Johnnie Walker Aims for Luxury Status with Five-Star Exclusive Theater

#6 Now the World's Largest Toy Company, LEGO Sees Success in Product Diversity

#7 With the World Watching, Will Apple's iPhone Event Disappoint?

#8 It's Go Time: HBO May Go Direct as Cable Landscape Continues to Shift

#9 Southwest Wears Its Heart On Its Sleeve with New Livery, Brand Experience

#10 Target CEO Vows Return to "Tarjay" While Home Depot Battles Data Breach

brand strategy

Yes or No, Scotland's Vote for Independence Will Affect Brands

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 12, 2014 03:21 PM

Great Britain may get a little less great on Sept. 18 if the citizens of Scotland vote to secede in the Scottish Independence Referendum that day, setting the stage to bid farewell to England, Wales and Northern Ireland and exit the United Kingdom. A vote for separation will certainly bring massive changes for the Scots, and it will also mean big changes for the businesses and brands that operate within Scotland's borders.

While Scotland's “Yes” campaign, the independence movement sponsored by a handful of the country's political parties, has been gaining steam—especially among younger voters, thanks to savvy #indyref social marketing—there have been more than a few brands that have expressed concern over the potential secession should the referendum result in divorce.

Those behind the “no” vote have been criticized for “Better Together,” a campaign that, despite its name, is perceived by some as fear-mongering, Ad Age reports. The commercial below was mocked as the "patronising BT Lady" when it was released in late August in a bid to sway undecided women voters.Continue reading...

brand commentary

On 9/11, Some Brands Exercised Right to Remain Silent in Ongoing Debate

Posted by Caitlin Barrett on September 12, 2014 02:06 PM

We’re well past the decade mark, but still generations away from 9/11 being anything but a solemn day—a day to remember, honor and reflect.

For brands, anniversaries of a tragedy like 9/11 are a time to tread carefully—and respectfully. Over the last 12 years, we’ve seen plenty of missteps, from thoughtless product placement to just plain insensitive marketing.

Now, we find ourselves in a place where (most) brands know what’s acceptable on 9/11. And that means demonstrating an understanding of the day’s seriousness in one of two ways: Acknowledge the day in a simple, heartfelt way (if your brand’s voice can even do that), or say nothing about it, and avoid any garish marketing that asks followers and fans to forget the day entirely. The advanced version? Just not saying anything at all.

The second strategy is hard. Brands find quiet unsettling. They want to be part of every conversation and there’s palpable worry that keeping mum might open them up to criticism that they’re not patriotic, not sensitive or not caring.Continue reading...

bc q&a

Omnichannel Glam: Q&A with Rent the Runway Co-Founder Jenny Fleiss

Posted by Brittany Waterson on September 12, 2014 12:14 PM

A week after opening its first permanent brick-and-mortar store in its hometown of New York, Rent the Runway’s newest venture is already a huge success and it's clear that the start-up, which allows customers to “rent” designer dresses and accessories online, is at the height of its fashion game. 

Incorporating lessons learned from its previous pop-up boutiques at Henri Bendel New York and the Cosmopolitan hotel in Las Vegas, foot traffic at its new flagship has been steady since the day it opened (20 minutes ahead of schedule to accommodate fans waiting at the door).

Located just off Fifth Avenue in Manhattan's Flatiron District, the store is the first physical embodiment of its recently refreshed logo and new navy and blush color palette. There are now plans in the works to follow up with a store near Washington, D.C., with more locations under consideration.

brandchannel chatted with Jenny Fleiss, co-founder of Rent the Runway, at RTR's Fashion Week celebration at its new Flatiron District store to discuss bringing a digital brand to life, what customers really want in an omnichannel retail experience and what's next.Continue reading...

corporate citizenship

Coca-Cola Continues Commitment to Arctic Home Campaign

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 12, 2014 11:24 AM

Coca-Cola has always brought attention to polar bears through the brand's iconic use of the animals in its holiday campaigns. But many may not know that Coke also plays a major part in raising awareness for their health and safety.

The brand recently launched the latest iteration of its Arctic Home campaign that brings awareness to polar bear conservation efforts and raises funds to help support a positive future for the Arctic. The initiative, which is in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, has already raised over $3 million, not counting the $2 million that Coke has pledged over five years.  

Arctic Home is now active in seven countries across Europe and Canada, as well. This year, the campaign hopes to drive awareness around the struggles of female bears who must find secure dens among the melting ice to birth and raise their cubs. Coca-Cola is also matching any donation made to Arctic Home, which also hopes to raise awareness around the effect of global warming in the Arctic.Continue reading...

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