Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 5, 2013 07:33 PM
Cold-cereal sales are falling, so companies are doing whatever they can to boost revenue in other areas. General Mills’ Pillsbury division hasn’t used a brand mascot for its products since the Doughboy was introduced back in 1965, but now the company has added a new face to help boost the revenue of an old brand: Toaster Strudels.
Toaster Strudels have been doing battle with Kellogg’s Pop Tarts for 27 years and have recently lost some ground, especially on the heels of Pop Tart's release of peanut butter variations. According to IRI, Toaster Strudels sales dropped 1.1 percent to $204 million in the year ending July 14. Meanwhile, Pop Tarts is on the rise, growing 5 percent to $668 million during that same time frame.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 2, 2013 02:53 PM
Now that RadioShack is presumably done with its executive shuffle, the electronics retailer's new CEO, CMO and VP of store concepts are wasting no time in trying to get the company back into the minds of younger, hipper consumers. This week, the chain debuted a new logo and opened its first concept store in New York (above), a first-of-its-kind customer experience for the brand that it's billing as an "interactive technology playground."
According to the Dallas Business Journal, the Fort Worth, Texas-based chain plans to open several other concept stores in New York, New Jersey and Texas in the coming weeks before deciding on a new design to roll out to its entire footprint of 4,300 stores. The move comes at a critical juncture, as The Shack is in need of a serious revamp. It lost $63 million in the fourth quarter last year and $43.3 million in the first quarter of this year.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 1, 2013 10:37 AM
The comics industry is getting stronger, bringing in an estimated $700 million to $730 million last year, up from $660 million to $690 million in 2011, according to John Jackson Miller, the editor of Comics Chronicle. But the 20-year-old Vertigo, a DC Comics imprint that doesn’t follow the same, cookie-cutter superhero storylines, isn’t contributing much to that profit.
After 20 years of publishing without anything close to a big hit, there were lots of rumors that DC would pull the plug on Vertigo. Instead, DC is re-investing in the brand and launching six new series this fall, the New York Times reports. The hope is that mature readers, hip to the world of graphic novels, will pick up the new series and latch on in a different way than those following Batman’s latest squabble.
“Right now, we’re in the middle of Vertigo’s transformation from a relatively sheltered idea and talent farm to a much more competitive place,” wrote Marc-Oliver Frisch on his comic-culture news blog The Beat, according to the New York Times. “Whether or not this is going to help DC in re-establishing the Vertigo brand as a selling point, we’re going to find out in the next several months.”Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 24, 2013 03:09 PM
It's going to be the "Sweetest Comeback in the History of Ever." At least that's what the new owners of Hostess are hoping as it prepares to relaunch the beloved snack brand on July 15.
After being off the market and offline for nearly 8 months, Twinkies, CupCakes, Ding Dongs and a host of other creme-filled baked goods will reappear on more store shelves than ever before, according to the LA Times. The brand, which was bought for $410 million by Apollo Global Management and C. Dean Metropoulos & Co. has re-emerged online through various social accounts and a revamped website to spread the word about the relaunch.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 13, 2013 12:56 PM
Remember Myspace? Well, it’s back with a $20 million ad campaign to help relaunch the once-defunct social network.
The brand, which has re-emerged thanks to some financial and emotional backing from Justin Timberlake and the Vanderhook brothers, hopes to lure up-and-coming and established musicians, producers and creatives with its new, completely redesigned platform.
"We really wanted to really represent the people that make this brand," Christian Parkes, head of marketing at Myspace told AdWeek. "Because it's not us in this room—we're the guys behind the scenes. But it's really about the community. The tone and spirit ... it's irreverent, slightly anarchistic, that's the tone and the attitude and the feeling."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 11, 2013 03:38 PM
The Reebok brand got a black eye in India last year when an accounting scandal there resulted in parent company Adidas firing Reebok India managing director Subhinder Singh Prem and COO Vishun Bhagat as well as shutting down hundreds of its stores.
Now the brand is trying to make a comeback in the world’s second-most-populated country. Adidas is “repositioning Reebok as a premium fitness brand in India as part of a major revival drive," according to the Economic Times. The brand plans to open 100 "premium stores" called Reebok Fit Hubs by March 2014 that will feature high-end merchandise and offer fitness consultations by certified staff members. There are currently 50 Reebok Fit Hubs in different locations around the world.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 25, 2013 04:28 PM
Twinkies may be back on store shelves by July, but it’ll be a whole new set of bakers that are pulling them out of the ovens. Their one uniting characteristic? They won’t be union members.
When Hostess Brands, the former owner of Twinkies, had to shut down because it couldn’t come to an agreement with the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers & Grain Millers International Union, processed baked-good lovers became fearful that they’d never see their beloved cakes again and immediately went to their local grocery stores to clear out the shelves of any products that remained.
Since then, of course, Hostess has been sold for $410 million to investment bankers Apollo Global Management and Pabst owner Metropoulos & Co., who plan to put another $60 million in capital investments into fixing up and reopening four of the 11 plants Hostess used, according to the Wall Street Journal. It may open a fifth as well, but the bankers are aiming to make the whole shebang run a lot more efficiently. The reopened plants should run at 90 to 95 percent capacity while some of the ones that will remain closed ran at less than 50 percent capacity, the Journal notes.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 15, 2013 07:14 PM
Volvo owners always knew they were different from other consumers. Now, the brand is launching a new, integrated advertising campaign in the US that explicitly appeals to the non-materialistic, minimalist ethos which differentiates Volvo aficionados from buyers of other luxury and near-luxury brands.
In the process, Volvo brand stewards hope to finally begin turning around the sales of a franchise whose US results peaked a decade ago, when the company was owned by Ford, and have kept on sliding over the last few years as Ford lost interest and then, in 2010, sold Volvo to Geely, a large Chinese automaker, for $1.5 billion.
Volvo owners' "interpretation of luxury is different but very real," Tassos Panas, vice president of marketing and product planning for Volvo of North America, told brandchannel. "They're more into life's experiences, and more into a Scandinavian simple design [of vehicles] versus a lot of clutter. They are very much luxury customers and love luxury products, but they don't feel a need to impress others."Continue reading...