Posted by Dale Buss on May 7, 2013 09:15 AM
Adobe abandons boxed software for the cloud.
Samsung keeps hammering Apple in new ad strategy for Galaxy S4.
Tim Tebow tops Forbes' new list of most influential athletes.
Acer plans to launch windows tablet in June.
Aereo asks judge to prevent new lawsuits by CBS.
Audi considers building plant in Brazil but seeks clarity from government.
Disney plans new Star Wars games through Electronic Arts.
Estee Lauder sets sights on big September fragrance launch.
Facebook made the Fortune 500 list for the first time.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 6, 2013 09:15 AM
YouTube close to launching paid subscription channels, reports say.
Amazon launches first Android app-store in China, ahead of Google.
Pfizer lets bashful buyers get Viagra online.
Al Jazeera America plans to open Detroit bureau.
Asustek plans to make small Windows 8 tablets.
Audi considers doubling production at Mexico factory under construction.
Berkshire Hathaway provides peek at era after Buffett.
BuzzFeed takes steps to expand foreign news.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 3, 2013 12:44 PM
China is the second largest economy in the world and every significant brand's future is impacted by its growth (or collapse)—but who's got the time?! Here's the week's reads that will make you look like a keen China observer in case you find yourself immersed in a cultural conversation.
This week: Iron Man 3 inaccuracies... BMW... Casino frugality... Wanglaoji trademarks... Heinz baby food... Hugo Boss mini-movies... Sunning manga... China's first lady for Pehchaolin... Ashley Furniture... L’Oreal... Ad spends... Iron Man 3 product placement... and more.Continue reading...
start your engines
Posted by Dale Buss on May 2, 2013 05:27 PM
With their racing heritage and ongoing participation in the sport, Mercedes-Benz and BMW know something about keeping close competitors in their rear-view mirrors. That's why it may take more than a new branding campaign for Lexus—which also races—to take back its US luxury-market leadership from its German rivals this year.
BMW took the American luxury-segment crown away from Lexus in 2011, when the Toyota-owned brand was dealing with short supplies after the earthquake and tsunmi in Japan, and the German brand has held on to it for the last two years. There's been a lot of speculation that Lexus might be able to regain the No. 1 spot in the segment this year because its supply situation is now fully resolved, and it's got some new products.
But that isn't happening—at least not yet. And actually, in April, Mercedes-Benz strengthened its 2013 lead over BMW in the segment, having finished in second place behind BMW for each of the last two full years. In April, the Mercedes brand widened its sales lead to nearly 4,700 vehicles for the year to date over BMW, with nearly 93,000 sold to BMW's more than 88,000.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 29, 2013 05:53 PM
The box-office launch for Iron Man 3 is about as promising as Tony Stark's next invention. The three-quel in Disney and Marvel's series about the tech-happy superhero and his industrialist alter ego blitzed competitors with its overseas opening last weekend, taking a $195-million bow while soaring past last year's $185-million overseas debut of The Avengers.
As the movie starring Robert Downey Jr. in the returning title role prepares for its US opening this weekend, the hearty franchise is getting an assist from another returning member of the "cast": the Audi R8 sports car. The German luxury brand placed a version of its R8 in the first and second Iron Man films; this time around Stark's main drive is the all-electric R8 e-tron which has gone into only limited actual production.
"Stark and his passion for innovative technology, his sophisticated wit and his character overall are great representatives for our brand," Drew Elliott, social-media specialist for Audi of America, told brandchannel.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Dale Buss on April 25, 2013 07:01 PM
The recent, cartoonish prospective print ads by Ford's agency in India—depicting Silvio Berlusconi and Paris Hilton as heartless kidnappers—turned out to be mere child's play in the modern universe of tin-eared automotive marketing. Hyundai has just set the bar at a new low with an online ad in Europe for its iX35 fuel-cell car, which depicts a suicide attempt in the car—which eventually fails because of the vehicles clean emissions.
The spot by Innocean, Hyundai's agency of record because it is owned by Hyundai, shows a man sitting in the driver's seat of a Hyundai in his garage, having made all the necessary preparations for offing himself by breathing in carbon monoxide. But, despite the foreboding music, it doesn't work. The commercial shows a tube—run into the passenger compartment from the exhaust pipe—emitting what looks like smoke but turns out to be vapor, as the car runs on "100-percent water emissions," a tagline informs the viewer. The guy is out of luck.
Hyundai today pulled the ad (which was posted last week) from YouTube, but it has gone wildly viral and enraged the brand's fans and non-fans the world over. "Hyundai understands the video has caused offense," Hyundai Europe said in a statement (update: scroll down for additional statements). "We apologize unreservedly. The video has been taken down and will not be used in any of our advertising or marketing."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 24, 2013 11:42 AM
It's one thing for Lexus to become a more American brand by building vehicles here, which has been announced in recent days, but a bigger challenge might be recasting the Toyota-owned luxury brand as an aspirational marque for younger consumers.
That is Lexus's goal, and it's in the midst of rolling out a number of initiatives to attempt to achieve that.
The brand plans a rollout of a new global marketing campaign in May under the fresh tagline, "Amazing in Motion." It is emphasizing mold-breaking exterior design for the first time in Lexus history, especially through the introduction of a so-called spindle hourglass-shaped grille. And it is even taking a page from a brand as far afield as GQ, by opening a new series of Intersect by Lexus meeting places in Tokyo, Dubai and New York starting this summer.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on April 24, 2013 10:47 AM
The upcoming re-imagined Great Gatsby 3D has a slew of roaring '20s brands going along for the ride. Moet & Chandon and MAC Cosmetics are listed among the film's partners in its official "Guide to Style." As is New York's Plaza Hotel, which will "celebrate the Roaring `20s with period-inspired affairs throughout the spring," while Brooks Brothers has released a special Gatsby collection. While not listed in the film's official style guide, Prada has its own major partnership and Gatsby-inpired line. Tiffany & Co. has embraced its tie-in as well.
But one needn't be at entertainment's high-end to grab a fashion line tie-in. Clothing brand Opening Ceremony partnered with Spring Breakers to release a line based on the exploitation film: "Accessories include unicorn bandanas, mesh backpacks, lighters, cotton beach towels, 'HARMONY' friendship bracelets, and 'SPRING BREAK 4EVER BITCHES' wristbands."
It's all part of a booming product placement business that grew 11.7 percent in 2012 and promises to get bigger this year.Continue reading...