brand news

In the News: Google, Instagram, MasterCard and more

Posted by Dale Buss on March 10, 2014 09:32 AM

In the News

Google looks to repeat Android success with wearable devices.

Instagram inks ad deal with Omnicom worth up to $100 million. 

MasterCard and Visa form payment-security group.

AT&T and T-Mobile rejigger wireless prices.

American Airlines and JetBlue end sales partnership.

Biomet files for IPO.

Boeing inspects undelivered Dreamliners for cracks and braces for any tarnish from Malaysian Airlines disaster.

Buffalo Wild Wings ramps up tablet rollout.

Cars.com goes on block for $3 billion.

Caterpillar and Sany argue over which is No. 1 in China excavator market.

Chipotle is asked to do sustainability reporting.

Chiquita buys Fyffes to create world's largest banana company.Continue reading...

sporting brands

MLS Looks to Inspire Homegrown Pride with New Campaign

Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 5, 2014 02:57 PM

Hoping to ride the World Cup's coattails, Major League Soccer has launched a new campaign to attract more fans to the sport in the US, where pro-soccer sits in a far-off fifth place behind the NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL. The campaign, “MLS: For Club and Country,” will launch in conjunction with the league's March 8 season opener.

Soccer is "very different from, say, football or baseball when you have one team and one team only. In soccer, you root for club—and country," said MLS CMO Howard Handler, who learned his trade while working for the NFL and Madison Square Garden, according to Ad Age.

The campaign hopes to remind soccer fans where some of their favorite national team players come from—a message that is more timely this year as more than a dozen of the players slated to represent the US at the World Cup this summer play in MLS. That wasn't so during the last Cup in South Africa, where only four of the national team's players hailed from the US league, while all others played for international leagues.Continue reading...

chew on this

Perdue Joins All-Natural Crusade with Antibiotic-Free Harvestland Line

Posted by Dale Buss on March 4, 2014 06:20 PM

Antiobiotic-free chicken has come home to roost in the US market. The "Eat Like Your Ancestors" campaign just launched by Perdue for its antibiotic-free chickens is the latest evidence of that.

Chicken raised without antibiotics still comprises only about 9 percent of the $9 to $10 billion US chicken market, according to NPR. But the trend is definitely moving in that direction as supermarket suppliers of chicken, such as Perdue, join an increasing number of fast-food chains, including Chick-fil-A, in making antibiotic-free birds available and pledging to stop using chicken that has been raised with antibiotics.

Chipotle, of course, was a leader in this movement by going antibiotic-free more than a decade ago and calling for "humane housing standards" for chicken suppliers. More so, its recent short film, "The Scarecrow" and its new satirical series, "Farmed & Dangerous," have fingered an "industrialized" food industry for continuing to rely on antibiotics and other less-than-optimal food sourcing tactics. Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Perdue, RadioShack, Microsoft and more

Posted by Dale Buss on March 4, 2014 09:14 AM

In the News

Perdue launches first campaign for antibiotic-free products.

RadioShack closes 20 percent of stores.

Microsoft reboots its marketing brain trust as new CEO Nadella shakes up ranks.

Apple goes on hiring binge in Asia to speed product releases and leaves Pandora out of CarPlay.

BMW plans to hit sales target early.

BP suffers major blow over Gulf spill claims.

Boeing could face problems over Ukraine tensions as auto brands also face concerns.

Burger King adds Satisfries to kids' meals.

Chipotle cooks up program with Major League Soccer.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Chipotle, Abercrombie & Fitch, Quiznos and more

Posted by Dale Buss on February 28, 2014 09:37 AM

In the News

Chipotle rolls out tofu-based Sofritas nationwide.

Abercrombie & Fitch cuts prices and looks to expand outlets.

Quiznos plans to file for bankruptcy.

American Airlines ends bereavement fares. 

Caterpillar loses big locomotive job.

Costa Rica launches new branding campaign.

Gap tops upbeat forecasts.

Hilton considers selling Waldorf Astoria Hotel. 

Michael Jordan tops list of highest-paid retired athletes.Continue reading...

chew on this

After Conquering Mexican Fare, Chipotle Looks to Apply Model to Asian, Pizza

Posted by Dale Buss on February 13, 2014 04:54 PM

Chipotle has been defining and redefining Mexican fast-casual food for some time now. Is there any reason to think it can't have the same kind of determinative effect in two other segments the company is eyeing for future growth?

While Chipotle has been racking up impressive sales gains and prompting desperate rivals to mimic its sustainable-ingredient positioning and other brand elements, the company also has been experimenting in earnest in Asian fare and artisan pizza, two categories where so far national brands haven't become prominent.

ShopHouse is designed to follow the same model as Chipotle, with guests building their meals as they walk the service line.Continue reading...

chew on this

Chipotle Leads Parade of QSR Brands Joining In On Sustainable Food

Posted by Dale Buss on February 12, 2014 05:19 PM

Looking for ways to jump-start a sluggish fast food market in the US, more brands are tacking toward sustainability positioning and "clean" ingredients as the king of that approach, Chipotle, doubles down on its own efforts as profits continue to rise. 

Latest to move in this direction are Chick-fil-A and Long John Silver's. The seafood chain said that it's planning a major brand relaunch this year, with a new tagline, "Think fish," that includes TV spots with environmental messaging, according to Ad Age.

"Anyone ever heard of free range?" a voiceover narrates one ad. "Get your next meal from the real frontier—fish sustainably harvested from the wildest place on earth."Continue reading...

mobile commerce

Square One Step Closer to Making Mobile Payments Mainstream with Whole Foods Deal

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 12, 2014 02:49 PM

American Express ran its “Don’t leave home without it” campaign for years, but it appears that consumers will soon be able to leave their homes without their AMEX or any other credit card, as mobile payments are on the rise.

Whole Foods Markets has made a deal with San Francisco-based mobile payments company Square to allow consumers to pay for goods with their smartphones using Square Wallet, and will implement Sqaure Register and Square Stand technology at checkout points within a select group of stores, The Street reports. That's not a bad deal for Square, which is rumored to be considering an initial public offering this year.

According to a press release, there will be a few “lab stores” that will test out the concept. "Together with Square, we'll deliver options to expedite checkouts, and we look forward to developing new concepts to further simplify and improve grocery shopping," said Walter Robb, co-CEO of Whole Foods. "Square's forward-thinking vision and technology makes them an ideal partner to create a convenient, responsive experience for our customers."Continue reading...

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