Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 25, 2014 03:03 PM
Yao Ming is already a one-man brand, having proven himself against the likes of Shaquille O’Neal as a 22-year-old NBA rookie. Now, more than ten years later, the former Houston Rockets star is a one-man band with a mission: to wean China off its love of ivory and save Africa’s endangered elephant population.
In just the past three years, 100,000 elephants have been poached for their tusks in mass-slaughters as the appetite for ivory grows in Ming’s home country. The death toll rises annually with 25,000 African elephants murdered last year and 4.5 million killed in the last 60 years.
Nicknamed the “Great Wall of China,” the 7’6” Yao, now 33, told the Washington Post he connects with Africa as “many animals there are bigger than me.”
So he launched a campaign in partnership with WildAid, Save the Elephants, the African Wildlife Foundation and the Yao Ming Foundation to defend the largest, gentlest creatures on the planet from man. Joining the cause, Discovery's Animal Planet network will debut a feature documentary, Saving Africa's Giants with Yao Ming, on Nov. 18.Continue reading...
Posted by Taylor Goddu on September 24, 2014 07:14 PM
Once known for its ticklish commercials that put innuendo in the spotlight, GoDaddy, an Internet domain registrar and web hosting company, has more than cleaned up its act—and people are taking notice.
By shifting away from the brand’s signature ads that amped up the sex appeal, GoDaddy is now appealing more directly to the small business owner and how they can help them. Moving forward, American auto racer, model and spokesperson Danica Patrick will still grace the GoDaddy’s media touchpoints, but in a different and seemingly less suggestive way.
Today, the brand's advertising, products and messaging emphasize time- and cost-efficiencies and being better able to leverage the web—without losing the brand's witty, irreverent, ass-kicking voice and approach.
brandchannel chatted with Barb Rechterman, GoDaddy's Chief Marketing Officer, to learn more about the brand’s evolving image (check out its new logo below), creative vision and go-to-market strategy, as well as how they’re staying authentic to the audience segments they serve.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on September 15, 2014 12:35 PM
Recanting for its titillating TV commercials and Super Bowl spots featuring Danica Patrick and other celebrities over the years, GoDaddy announced last year that it's cleaning up its act by losing the jiggle and innuendo in order to be taken more seriously. Losing money year-over-year and looking to go public, it faced few alternatives if it wanted to turn around its ailing business and expand its brand from Internet domain name purveyor to All Things Online for small businesses looking to stand out on the web.
Now approaching its $100 million IPO, it's continuing to mature with a new fall campaign that a press release describes as "a crisp illustration of the company’s strategic marketing shift, moving away from simple brand awareness to targeting small business owners about how GoDaddy’s products and services can make them more successful."
The first of four TV commercials (watch below) are described as using aggressive "foxhole humor" that aims for the funny bone with razor-sharp nails: "the brutal truth of what it's like to be a small business owner."Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 10, 2014 11:46 AM
The start of the NFL season should be a celebratory time for NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, but this year is a bit different thanks to TMZ’s timely release of a tape of former Baltimore Raven's running back Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancée inside an elevator in a (now shuttered) Atlantic City casino.
The Ravens released Rice and the NFL suspended him indefinitely (after first only serving him a two-game suspension), but the outcry is loud over how poorly Goodell and the league handled the serious situation. In light of the most recent revelations, Rice's many endoresement deals are disappearing—including the biggest of them all, Nike.
While Rice’s wife, Janay Palmer, expressed her support for her husband and outrage over the amount of publicity her private life has received, not too many others are offering up support for the 27-year-old.
Fans, in particular, were outraged by his actions and retailers including Modell’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods and NFL.com immediately removed Rice’s jersey from shelves, while the Ravens announced that they will allow fans to exchange Rice jerseys later this month, as brands move to quickly distance themselves from the debacle.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on September 4, 2014 12:04 PM
Two giants of Chinese celebrity stand to be big losers if a new product endorsement law in China is enforced. (It won't be, but humor us.)
First, there is Jackie Chan, the acrobatic movie star who never uses a stunt double or met a product he wouldn't pitch.
The other is recently minted mega-star Fan Bingbing, who seems just as happy as the face of Louis Vuitton, L'Oreal, Cartier and Moet and Chandon as the face of a local laundry detergent and Lu Shou ("Thin Green") weight loss pills (below). Fan is also a fervent video gamer, apparently.
And then there are the foreigners.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 3, 2014 03:52 PM
Nationwide Insurance goes by many names these days, including Allied Insurance, Harleysville Insurance and Veterinary Pet Insurance, among others. But now the Columbus, Ohio-based company is uniting all of its brands under its largest, and most well-known name.
“The Nationwide brand is the core and embodiment of who we are as a company, and research shows it is our best-known asset,” said Nationwide CEO Steve Rasmussen in a press release. “We plan to leverage this asset to shine the spotlight on all of the products and solutions we offer.”
In addition, the company is introducing an updated version of the Nationwide "N" and Eagle brand mark that aim to bring to mind the company’s history and 50-year-old tagline, “Nationwide is on your side.” The full shift to the new logo and name will take 18 months.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 22, 2014 03:53 PM
Kia is bringing back its popular hamsters in a new TV ad campaign. While there has been criticism that the first commercial is sort of creepy, Kia might encounter a bigger challenge as it touts the new 2015 electrified version of its Soul model: to mix mammalian metaphors, is the brand barking up the wrong tree with this vehicle?
For now, Kia is generating excitement with the news that it is bringing back the six-year-old crew of hamsters that have entertained Super Bowl TV audiences, among others. They will be promoting the Soul EV with a music-harged commercial featuring Maroon 5's new single, "Animals," and a story line that has the lovable rodents creating sexy hamster companions in the laboratory. There's also a free iPad app that lets users digitally investigate the new car's features.
The ad will debut on the MTV Video Music Awards this Sunday. Michael Sprague, Kia's North American chief, told USA Today that the spot will tap into "geek chic" as it focuses on lab-bound hamsters at first attempting to transform a gas-powered Soul into an EV—and ending up creating a leggy female of their species.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 11, 2014 06:37 PM
Aunt Jemima stares down from grocery-store shelves with a beatific smile, but the woman who is supposedly the inspiration behind the brand has at least one great grandchild who isn’t too happy.
Last year, the progeny of Anna Short Harrington, whose descendants argue that she was the inspiration behind the Aunt Jemima brand and recipe and whose likeness served as the model for the brand, which was bought by Quaker Oats in 1935, discovered that the company “had trademarked Harrington's likeness and picture in 1937" and "determined that they were owed royalties,” Reuters reports.
Harrington's great-grandson, D.W. Hunter, filed a $2 billion lawsuit on August 5 against Quaker Oats Co., PepsiCo, which owns Quaker Oats, Pinnacle Foods and Hillshire Brands Co., for exploiting Harrington's image and recipe for years without paying an "equitable fair share of royalties" to her family.Continue reading...