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health matters

Walgreens Turns Wellness Coach With Help From WebMD

Posted by Dale Buss on October 2, 2014 04:48 PM

It isn't quite the Apple app with the Mayo Clinic, or even Nike Fit, but the Walgreens pharmacy chain and digital health hub WebMD are partnering in a move aimed at helping each brand compete more effectively in the era of intense digitization of healthcare and medical and fitness advice and monitoring.

The agreement will bring WebMD's virtual wellness-coaching programs to America's largest drugstore chain and help incentivize its Balance Rewards members to practice healthy behaviors using the WebMD platform by giving them rewards points by participating in programs and tracking progress toward goals. This is a first for Walgreens loyalty program, which traditionally rewarded points based on what customers purchase, not do.

The deal also follows the anti-tobacco move by CVS, America's #2 drugstore chain, which went into effect last month and followed a lot of research and soul-searching, at a time when all pharmacies are looking to increase their value to customers.Continue reading...

branding together

U2unes Download: Apple and U2 Announce Next Big Gift to Music

Posted by Shirley Brady on September 18, 2014 03:24 PM

After exclusively launching U2’s new Songs of Innocence album to 500 million iTunes accounts this past week, Apple is delivering something else in response to customer demand. And true to Apple form, it’s an intuitive, easy-to-use and simple piece of technology—a delete button

A case study in how not to show customer appreciation, the unwanted gift of U2 music to all iTunes customers, whether they were fans of the Irish rockers or not, was hyped as the largest album release ever, and a "shrewd" marketing partnership (to the reported tune of $100 million) to celebrate the roots of the brand's longstanding tie-in with the band.

It turns out that the U2 album giveaway was a teaser for a bigger gift to come—and not only to music lovers but to musicians and the music industry as a whole. As TIME reveals in an exclusive cover story today, Apple is working with U2 on a bigger "secret project": a new digital music format designed to delight and excite customers to buy not only individual tracks but whole albums-as-experiences, and in so doing, "save the music industry."Continue reading...

GM Bids for Brand Loyalty with Free Maintenance Across Brand

Posted by Dale Buss on June 6, 2013 06:27 PM

General Motors bid for increased customer loyalty today in an increasingly competitive US market by extending its offer of free maintenance to include most new Chevy, Buick and GMC vehicles.

CEO Dan Akerson revealed the gambit at GM's annual shareholders meeting at company headquarters in Detroit on Thursday. Toyota and Volkswagen have offered free maintenance across their US lineups for a few years, and GM recently began offering free maintenance just on its Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups. Cadillac already offered a more extensive free-maintenance program.

But Chris Perry, Chevrolet's global CMO, told brandchannel that GM's move has two purposes. "It's definitely a way to provide greater value to our buyers and to the ownership experience," he said. "And it's a way to garner greater customer loyalty as well."Continue reading...

brand essence

#Winning: Sephora Reaps Rewards of Dedicated Customers, Fine-Tuned Service

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 19, 2013 05:18 PM

Since its inception in 1970s Paris, Sephora has been a disruptive force within the beauty industry. Today, the retailer has 1,750 stores in 30 countries and is turning out revenues upwards of $4 billion.

From its very birth, “this new stand-alone beauty and fragrance store was a real shock for store operators throughout the world,” notes Forbes. “The department stores believed they had the only retail format capable of effectively selling premium beauty and fragrance products. They were wrong.”

Acquired by Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy in 1997, the first Sephora store opened in New York in 1998. Today there are close to 706 stores in the US, including 386 boutiques inside JCPenney stores, a key element that has kept the ailing department store from drowning. Breaking the barrier of entry, Sephora applied that iconoclastic spirit to wooing a new, younger consumer than those frequenting department stores, with modern brands and a cross-sell of products by in-store sales associates who primp and paint customer’s faces from their choice of products, arranged alphabetically.Continue reading...

shopper insights

Study: CPG Websites Turn Visitors into Brand Buyers

Posted by Barry Silverstein on February 8, 2012 12:11 PM

There's good news for CPG companies who've been shifting their promotional dollars from print ads, FSIs, direct mail, and other traditional media to online media. A new study suggests they should keep doing it.

A trio of lower-case branded research consultancies — accenture, comScore, and dunnhumbyUSA — have teamed up on a research study to answer the question, "Are your CPG brands maximizing the return on your digital investment?"

What they discovered was compelling: a direct correlation between CPG brand website usage and in-store purchase behavior. The study was based on an integrated panel of one million U.S. Internet users who gave comScore explicit permission to have their online activities continuously measured and matched to their in-store brand buying behavior provided by dunnhumbyUSA.

The research was designed to accomplish three specific objectives:Continue reading...

response mechanism

Accenture: Boost Loyalty by Avoiding Blind Spots

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 2, 2012 11:02 AM

A new study from Accenture reveals that 66% of consumers changed brand loyalty in 2011 due to dissatisfaction with customer service, even as satisfaction with overall services provided increased.

The Accenture Global Consumer Survey polled 10,000 people in 27 countries on ten issues about service expectations, purchasing intentions, loyalty, satisfaction and switching.Continue reading...


Hyundai Finds Traction with Frugal and Millionaires Alike

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 18, 2011 02:00 PM

Maybe it's the dulcet tones of brand voice Jeff Bridges, but Hyundai — a smaller automaker than rivals Honda and Toyota — is tops on one important list: the most common return-customer seller in the last quarter.

Hyundai topped the Kelley Blue Book list, a first for the company, according to a KBB press release. As Auto Loan News reports, Hyundai placed first in customer loyalty with 52.3% of the vote with Honda (49.7%) and Toyota (42.7%) placing second and third.

The top American brand was Ford, Auto Loan News notes, which came in fourth with 45.4%.Continue reading...


Honda Aims for a Million More Million-Mile Joes

Posted by Dale Buss on June 16, 2011 01:30 PM

Hyundai offers its Assurance; now Honda has its Promise.

In a bid to hang on to small-car customers it might otherwise be losing because it is running short of key models including Civic, Honda is launching a new policy that allows US dealers to honor current incentives ... even if purchasers must wait weeks until the exact units they want become available.

Yes, not all brand fans are like "Million-Mile Joe," a Honda loyalist in Norway, Maine, who's about to hit the million mile mark in his 1990 Accord.Continue reading...

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