brand news

In the News: Volkswagen, Google, Intel and more

Posted by Dale Buss on October 2, 2013 09:25 AM

In the News

Apple is pressed for $150-billion buyback by Carl Icahn as the new #1 Best Global Brand is estimated to be sitting on top of 10% of all US corporate cash.

Volkswagen plans to use augmented reality to service cars.

Google is accused of wiretapping in Gmail scans.

Intel commits to women's digital education.

BlackBerry reveals even more doom in restructuring.

Bravo signs four major new brand partners to integrate in Top Chef.

Campbell Soup sells European simple-meals business.Continue reading...

brand vs. brand

Is Taco Bell's Cantina Bell Menu Good Enough That Chipotle Will Say "No Mas"?

Posted by Dale Buss on October 5, 2012 03:33 PM

Yes, making gains at breakfast is nice. So is the fact that nobody talks about the hit job on Taco Bell's beef from a while back. But now the Yum! Brands stalwart is finally getting the kind of feedback that brand stewards really have been craving all along: Americans are mentioning "Taco Bell" in the same jalapeno-laced breath as "Chipotle." Thanks largely to the Cantina Bell menu that it introduced in July, Taco Bell perceptions are climbing among American consumers, according to new research by the YouGov BrandIndex.

Created by celebrity chef Lorena Garcia — featured on the recent season of Top Chef Masters on Bravo, which hyped her Taco Bell tie-in during commercial breaks —the chain's new Cantina Bell menu brings eight new ingredients to Taco Bell including whole black beans, cilantro rice and fire-roasted corn salsa — exactly the sorts of staples that have garnered Chipotle's fresh-Mex menu such high regard. Garcia even recently visited fields in California to show where and how Taco Bells gets its cilantro.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Apple vs. Samsung, ESPN, Ford, Tiffany & more

Posted by Dale Buss on August 28, 2012 08:47 AM

5-Hour Energy and other energy-drink makers face New York state probe over ingredients and marketing.

Amazon reshapes computing with its cloud power.

Apple moves post-ruling efforts toward banning some Samsung phones from U.S. market as Korean company vows to fight, and Google looks at implications of case for its own business.

Avis drops "We Try Harder" tagline after 50 years in favor of "It's Your Space."

Axe enlists Jim Henson's shop to help with latest campaign.

Best Buy board steps to the side so founder can proceed with effort to take over company.

Boeing adds third line for Dreamliner assembly.

Bravo plans to launch another Top Chef spinoff.

Chevron marshals cash as investors wonder what energy company will do with it.

Disney sails through summer behind long-term plans.Continue reading...

chew on this

Domino’s Goes Artisanal with Top Chef Fan Fave Fabio

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 27, 2011 01:16 PM

Continuing on our pizza theme, "Artisanal" is probably not the first word people think of when they think of pizza-delivery king Domino’s.

Whether their line cooks are artisans or not, 51-year-old Domino’s is attempting to push it into a market that would order such pies rather than depending on your basic pepperoni/mushroom/cheese pies.

The Michigan-based company today adds Domino's Artisan Pizza to its menu, and a Twitter and Facebook promotion is touting its three new pie flavors: Spinach & Feta, Italian Sausage & Pepper Trio, and Tuscan Salami & Roasted Veggie.Continue reading...

brand news

Brands to Watch: iPhone 5, Qwikster, Tyson Foods & more

Posted by Shirley Brady on September 19, 2011 06:34 PM

Brands to Watch

Apple "iPhone 5 in October" rumors heat up and cases appear, while Samsung sues to pre-emptively block the device in Korea.

Netflix's Qwikster spin-off proves a turn-off to observers, subscribers and Wall Street.

Tyson Foods releases social campaign for Feeding America, and settles 12-year legal battle with employees with $32M settlement.

AT&T faces tough battle with seven states backing DoJ suit.

Facebook and Time Warner's CNN and Cartoon Network team up on anti-bullying pledge app.

Jarritos Mexican soda appeals to non-Hispanic young men with new campaign.

Kenshoo expands relationship with Omnicom's Annalect.

Lego enhances augmented reality packaging.Continue reading...

branding together

Top Chef Masters Art of Product Placement with Healthy Choice

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 15, 2011 01:27 PM

Top Chef has been on Bravo for eight seasons and it is hard to imagine any one of the show’s many knife-wielding contestants just popping in some frozen food.

That will soon change, thanks to a new partnership between ConAgra’s Healthy Choice and the franchise. Healthy Choice is using Top Chef  to launch its latest line of frozen entrées, called Healthy Choice Top Chef Inspired Café Steamers, by sponsoring an original web series on 

The hit cook-off competition just started shooting its ninth season in Texas, so creating web-exclusive programming featuring its fan-favorited alumni makes sense to whet viewers' appetites for the next season, keep the Top Chef brand top of mind — and give advertisers new (branded entertainment) opportunities to reach Top Chef foodies, who are salivating for the new season.Continue reading...

chew on this

Cargill Proves Branding Savvy with Truvia

Posted by Dale Buss on May 16, 2011 01:00 PM

Huge and privately held, Minnesota-based Cargill used to be one of the biggest companies you’d never heard of.

The $108-billion grain-processing giant has its finger in food commodities all over the world, It’s a huge presence in ingredients for better-for-you foods and beverages, and it occasionally ticks off environmentalists over sustainability issues. But Cargill wasn’t known for building consumer brands.

Until now. With some practice on its Coro Wise sterols that are an ingredient in cholesterol-lowering foods such as Minute Maid Heart Wise orange juice, Cargill has hit a brand-building home run as a rookie at the practice.

Its Truvia “natural” sweetener, made from the stevia bush native to South America, has surpassed venerable Sweet ‘N Low as the No. 2 sugar substitute in the country, according to AC Nielsen.Continue reading...

Anheuser-Busch Buys Chicago's Goose Island Beer

Posted by Shirley Brady on March 28, 2011 02:30 PM

Chicago's Goose Island craft beer brand has been bought by its distribution partner, Anheuser-Busch, for $38.8 million. Goose Island's two brew pubs, one of which recently collaborated (above) with past Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard, are not part of the deal.

Naturally, not everyone was thrilled with the news, particularly fans of its brews such as Honkers Ale and Goose Island brewmaster Greg Hall, who is being replaced by his second-in-command (and, payout notwithstanding, being gracious about it).

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