brand extensions

Are You Ready to (Wear) Zumba? Iconic British Retailer Harrod's Is!

Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 17, 2012 11:55 AM

Since Miami-based Zumba Fitness got started back in 2001, it has rapidly grown into a global phenomenon, bringing new music and dance moves to millions of people, of all ages and shapes, worldwide. The dance class can now be found in 125 countries and has grown nearly 800 percent in just the last three years, according to the company.

Over time, it has introduced a number of different classes in order to hit as many markets as possible: Water! Wheelchair-bound! Kids! You name it. Now the company is expanding into the apparel business. According to a press release, Zumba Fitness has a new line of branded clothing that will be sold exclusively at Harrod’s in Britain for the next two months and then, naturally, beyond.Continue reading...

china

More for Less: Baidu Breaks 1,000 Yuan Barrier With New Cloud Phone

Posted by Abe Sauer on May 15, 2012 09:50 AM

Google is in the smartphone business, why shouldn't China's leading search engine get in the game? Today it has: Baidu just unveiled its first partnership that gets it into China's booming low-cost mobile market.

Changhong's (长红) H5018 is powered by the Baidu Cloud Smart Terminal platform, offers a 3.5 inch touchscreen, 3G connectivity, and a 3 megapixel camera. The phone will also come with 100 gigabytes of free storage in Baidu's cloud.

The whole thing will cost less than 1,000 yuan ($160). Just what kind of dent is Baidu's low-cost high-feature phone about to make in China and should others (cough—Apple—cough) be worried?Continue reading...

branded entertainment

Victoria’s Secret Expands Brand to Radio

Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 11, 2012 12:04 PM

Victoria's Secret is known for eye-popping video and print campaigns promoting its sexy lingerie and current stable of shapely models, but now it's wooing with audio. In an unusual twist on branded entertainment, a music-based cross-promotion is seeing VS models promoting their favorite tunes on Thefuture.fm, a website which features DJ mixes.

Billed as VS Radio, the branded audio channel includes exclusive dance mixes from Los Angeles DJ Lindsay Luv, promoting the brand via her Facebook and Twitter accounts, with a photo of Luv and Victoria's Secret model "angels" as the DJ's cover photo on her Facebook Timeline. Victoria’s Secret has about 18.5 million fans/likes on Facebook.Continue reading...

that's entertainment

Lucasfilm Trademarks 'Star Wars 1313' as Fan Guessing Game Begins

Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 9, 2012 11:52 AM

“Star Wars” Day was last week. (“May the fourth be with you” and all that). But diehard fans of the films are obviously ready to celebrate it at anytime and anywhere. So there was a jolt of excitement when word came out that the owner of the franchise, LucasFilm, had filed for a new trademark, “Star Wars 1313,” according to NeoSeeker.com.

The filing suggests that LucasFilm will be using the new trademark for a new Star Wars game, though others had originally thought it might be a television show.

The trademark would be used for “interactive entertainment software and accompanying instruction manuals sold as a unit, namely, computer game software and manuals sold as a unit, video game software and manuals sold as a unit; video game software, computer game software, and pre-recorded compact discs and DVDs featuring games, films, animation, music, computer game software, and video game software; downloadable video game software and downloadable computer game software; computer game software for use on mobile and cellular phones.”Continue reading...

literary brands

Harry Potter E-Books Chalk Up $5M in First Month

Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 7, 2012 12:03 PM

Kids and Young Adult (YA) e-book sales in the U.S. grew by triple digits in February, reports the Association of American Publishers, as compared to relatively flat adult e-book sales figures. The total for e-book sales in the category is close to 25 million sold in January 2012.

The key contributing factor: adults are devouring YA e-books like The Hunger Games trilogy, and — still — Harry Potter. The Hunger Games franchise held the top three spots for the month of January on both the physical bestseller list and the Kindle paid bestseller list, appearing on USA Today’s bestseller list and taking first place for Amazon and Kindle sales. With the March release of the movie, stats on e-book sales to be released next month could be record-breaking.

On the Pottermore e-hub, which was announced last June, Harry Potter e-book sales reached close to 525,000 in the first month, totaling about $4.8 million. The Pottermore e-bookstore launched on March 27 as the exclusive place to buy Harry Potter e-books and digital audiobooks followed by the full Potter digi-verse on April 14.Continue reading...

brand and bottle

Bethenny Frankel's Skinnygirl Brand is Booming for Beam

Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 3, 2012 10:13 AM

Bethenny Frankel may have been a housewife a few years back when she starred in the reality shows Real Housewives of New York and Bethenny Getting Married, but she got hot and heavy into business now with her Skinnygirl cocktail brand before selling it to Beam last year.

Now she must be pretty proud mama of the business she founded, which is expanding into cleanses and workouts to become a lifestyle brand — the drinks company was the fastest-growing brand of spirits in America last year, according to Technomic research (via MSNBC).

The company had a .388 percent increase in sales last year, Technomic reports. Skinnygirl started out by just selling a premixed margarita and now has "four lines of premixed cocktails with four flavored vodkas and three wines debuting nationally this month."Continue reading...

brand extensions

TED-Ed Aims to be a Teacher's Pet

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 27, 2012 05:29 PM

The newly-launched TED-ED website is TED’s latest delivery on its brand promise of “Ideas Worth Spreading;” a dynamic site with customizable tools for educators.

Enhancing the TED-Ed YouTube channel launched in March whose short videos have garnered over 2.5 million views, this latest platform lets teachers tailor TED-Ed videos with follow-up questions and assignments.

Each short video (three to eight minutes) includes multiple choice quizzes, open-ended questions and a ‘Dig Deeper’ section. When a student answers incorrectly, a ‘Video Hint’ directs them to the point in the video with the correct answer. Teachers can browse content by subject with videos mapped via tagging to curricula taught in schools and access correlative materials that augment with the learning level.Continue reading...

kiddie brands

Lego Not Giving Up on Girls

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 20, 2012 12:01 PM

The folks at Lego thought they were throwing open a door to a wealth of new consumers when it introduced its Lego Friends line back in December. Since it’s being designed for and marketed to girls, the company figured it would be creating a whole new source of revenue and please any parents eager to bring their daughters into the world of Lego.

Instead, it got a whole lot more, with 50,000-plus people signing a petition against the new line. The uproar’s volume may have been turned down since then but Lego Friends still has its detractors, a fact that the toy-maker is aiming to turn around.

The first step comes today, when Lego execs are scheduled to meet with two young women who helped lead the petition and discuss possible improvements, a release from Change.org states. Bailey Shoemaker Richards and Stephanie Cole launched the campaign against Lego on the Change.org site. The two 20somethings are members of the “girl-fueled organization SPARK Movement,” according to a press release.Continue reading...

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