bc q&a

Auto Motivator: 5 Questions with Chrysler Group CMO Olivier François

Posted by Dale Buss on September 22, 2014 05:32 PM

Since Fiat Chrysler outlined its ambitious growth plans for most of its brands at a meeting in May with investors and journalists, and of course even before that, Fiat Chrysler Group CMO Olivier François has been strategizing about the implications for marketing of Fiat, Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Ram in the United States and abroad.

Among the tall orders he faces are CEO Sergio Marchionne's stretch goal of more than doubling sales of the Chrysler brand by 2018, compared with its 350,000 sales a year ago. More easily achievable goals might be success for the ongoing conversion of Jeep into a global brand; ensuring the continued rise of Ram, which was cleaved from Dodge a few years ago; and sharpening Dodge as a performance brand, rolling it back from its broader positioning of yore.

More challenging could be making Fiat a truly household name in North America. And then there's the automaker's goal to make a triumphant return for Alfa Romeo in US marketplace as a highly regarded luxury-performance brand, decades after it exited quietly.

For François, the overall objective is to help pivot from a marketing-led company, which Chrysler was as it recovered from the 2009 bailout by Fiat and the US government, to a product-led company on the strength of a vibrant string of launches of overhauled and new vehicles which the company is rolling out now.

It's the difference between featuring Eminem in a Super Bowl commercial three years ago to help revive the Chrysler brand with only a warmed-over 200 model to show off, and today, when Chrysler has an all-new, extremely worthy 200 mid-sized sedan to brag about, so it can tailor its messaging around the technology, styling, performance and comfort bona fides of the car and how well it is built.Continue reading...

World Cup Daily

With the World Cup Underway, Brands Embrace Global Football Frenzy

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 12, 2014 04:32 PM

After years of preparations and qualifying tournaments, the World Cup is finally here. And soon it will be clear if the new stadiums can handle the crowds, whether Spain can reclaim the Cup, and what brands will claim the marketing crown.  

With the first day of the tournament, which kicks off with hometown favorite Brazil facing Croatia, comes a renewed effort from brands to get their names in front of the millions of fans watching across the globe. And why not? The first game ball has just barely begun to roll down the field and already Unruly Media has concluded that World Cup ads have outperformed those surrounding the Super Bowl. 

While World Cup engagement levels online are through the roof, it all may come crashing down if hacker group Anonymous succeeds in its threat to compromise sponsors' websites. According to SC Magazine, the group has defaced eight World Cup websites and disrupted another. The attacks are focused on government and sponsor websites to “protest the lavish spending on the soccer games in a country struggling to provide basic services,” Reuters reports.Continue reading...

digital marketing

Nissan's Growing Bets on Social Media May Soon Include Equity Stakes

Posted by Dale Buss on February 11, 2014 10:52 AM

The Sochi Olympics and the Super Bowl are underscoring the continued importance of "tent-pole" marketing platforms for automakers, but Nissan is a brand that is scoring a lot of succees on the much more microscopic level of social media. The end results of Nissan's online focus keep adding up.

Nissan is taking what it calls a "test-and-learn" approach to digital media that includes lots of small and frequent, calculated risks with new social tools, platforms, technologies and partnerships. And soon Nissan may end up investing in equity stakes in some of the startups that have created or mastered niches in this world.

"It would be a fantastic way for us to discover great companies that can help us be more effective in marketing before they hit it big and everyone discovers them," Erich Marx, Nissan's director of social media, told brandchannel. "We're not afraid of trying something new and even failing."Continue reading...

let's make a deal

Google Solidifies Mapping Supremacy with Reported Purchase of Waze

Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 10, 2013 01:51 PM

In a bid to reinforce its mapping leadership, Google is reportedly about to acquire Israeli map start-up Waze for $1.3 billion, beating out a bid from Facebook for $1 billion, Bloomberg reports

Waze is a crowd-sourced, mobile-oriented navigation device for drivers that mines the data provided from its 47 million members to create its maps. With mapping services among the five most-used applications on smartphones, owning a mapping service that allows for personalization will give Google a key advantage, especially in mobile ads, and boost its position within the social mapping space.

For Google, acquiring Waze also means keeping arch-rivals Apple and Facebook at bay, not to mention eliminating what could have been an imminent threat to its native Maps application.Continue reading...

digital moves

Google Announces Music Streaming Service, Updates to Maps and Hangouts at I/O Conference

Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 15, 2013 03:47 PM

Google confirmed speculation that it would launch a music service at its annual I/O developer conference Wednesday. The internet giant announced Google Play Music All Access, a subscription-based service that is a little bit of Spotify, Pandora and Twitter #Music all in one. Apparently, the internet behemoth's announcements went over well with Wall Street, as Google's shares closed at a record high of $900, putting the company's market cap over $300 billion. 

Unlike Google Music, its cloud music service that lets users upload up to 20,000 purchased songs to listen to on Android devices or on the web, the Google Play Music All Access subscription service launches it into direct competition with music streaming services like Spotify—which has 24 million active monthly users, 6 million paying subscribers and more than 20 million licensed songs in 28 countries—as well as Pandora. Though unlike either of the other services, Google's All Access won't have a free option. The service, which will be available across the web, mobile and tablets will cost $9.99 per month after a 30-day free trial. 

“It makes lots of sense for both YouTube and Play, which was built for Google’s Android devices, to sell music subscriptions,” notes AllThingsD. “YouTube is the world’s biggest free music service, which could make it a fantastic funnel for a Spotify-like paid offering, which can also help solve some problems with the music labels."Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Coca-Cola, Levi's, Lay's and more

Posted by Dale Buss on May 9, 2013 09:15 AM

In the News

Coca-Cola promises to reduce marketing to kids as part of global anti-obesity commitment.

Levi Strauss buys naming rights to planned new stadium of San Francisco 49ers.

Lay's reveals chip-flavor contest winner.

Abercrombie & Fitch draws fire for stocking only "skinny" sizes for women.

Activision Blizzard warns "World of Warcraft" is losing subscribers.

AT&T severely slashes Facebook Home phone prices.

BT enters British-sports broadcasting.

Claire's IPO will test market for debt-laden companies.

Ford takes over as title sponsor of Detroit's annual fireworks.

Google Maps will reportedly unveil new interface.Continue reading...

viral buzz

April Fools' Day: Brands Show Off Their Funny Side on Social Media

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 1, 2013 11:23 AM

Happy April Fool's Day! If you thought your favorite brands were too serious and focused on great products and innovation to have a laugh or two, think again. Here's a roundup of some social media jokes from YouTube, Honda, Twitter and even the little town of Ely, Minn. 

Be honest: did you fall for any of them?Continue reading...

out and about

QR Codes Hit the Roof

Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 7, 2011 02:06 PM

A good marketer never misses an opportunity to spread the word, right? Well, a  public relations consulting firm in Austin, Texas, Phillips & Company, has found a way to place ads in a spot where lots of people are traveling every day: Google Maps and Google Earth.

San Francisco Business Times reports that Phillips (which is interested in the ultimate in outdoor marketing — the "space economy") is now able to place extremely large QR codes on the tops of buildings that will be photographed by the satellites that feed Google Maps and Google Earth its images and read on computers as an image. It's working with another local business, mobile marketing firm 44Doors, as the Austin Statesman reports:

For the service, which is called Blue Marble, Phillips' fee starts at $8,500, with a recurring $200 support fee. To install the codes, (Rich) Phillips said his company has a method of "physically engineering" a QR code onto a rooftop "to ensure it's permanent or temporary." He declined to get into specifics on the exact method. After a customer scans the code, 44Doors essentially handles the rest. The Austin mobile marketing company designs a variety of content — such as videos, coupons and mobile websites — where QR codes can send consumers.

Phillips says “that a company, such as a big box retailer with lots of roof space, which has one installed, will be rephotographed by Google within three months,” the Business Times reports. “The QR code will be digested by Google’s mapping systems and will cause a logo of that company to appear when someone looks at their building’s images.” 

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