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They're Baaaack! Rising Gas Prices Threaten Consumers and Brands

Posted by Dale Buss on February 28, 2012 10:01 AM

Higher gasoline prices are beginning to scratch their way back into the minds of American consumers, and that's not good news for brand marketers. The concern: the more that drivers have to pay at the pump, and the more they worry about their own finances and the U.S. economy as a result, the less interested they'll be in other kinds of spending.

So far, there doesn't appear to be material damage from the glimmers of $5- and even nearly $6-a-gallon gasoline in America.

J.D. Power just reported that new-vehicle retail sales in February have been "strong" month-to-date and are likely to show an overall increase of about 5 percent from year-earlier retail sales. And Nation's Restaurant News surveyed some quick-serve chains and found no damage yet in the form of consumers staying away from drive-throughs because it's too expensive to get there.Continue reading...

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Are Luxury Watch Brands Stuck in Time?

Posted by Barry Silverstein on April 28, 2010 10:57 AM

Ever heard of Blancpain? How about Vacheron Constantin, or Breguet?

Consider yourself very fortunate if you recognize these brands. While they are hardly household names, they are considered the top three luxury watch brands among the wealthiest U.S. consumers, according to the Luxury Brands Status Index just released by the independent Luxury Institute. Thirty-three watch brands were listed in the study.

Blancpain, the leader in the category, is a Swiss manufacturer. Brandchannel recently reported that Swiss watchmakers are seeing an uptick in 2010 sales.

Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute, said that while luxury watches are a very prestigious category, "the industry is stuck in time in terms of its distribution and customer relationship building innovations."Continue reading...

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