brand news

In the News: Comcast, Apple, Walmart and more

Posted by Dale Buss on February 13, 2014 09:27 AM

In the News

Comcast acquires Time Warner Cable in mammoth deal as it eyes Netflix turf.

Apple says it doesn't procure blood metal and talks about launching updated TV set-top box.

Walmart sees pitchman Mike Rowe come to defense of retailer on social media.

GM recalls 600,000 older vehicles to replace ignition switches.

Avon nears bribery settlement.

Cisco sees growth hit by sagging tech demand.

Fiat taps Sean "Diddy" Combs to tout 500 line worldwide.

Ford reveals GPS privacy practices.

Intuit sees Super Bowl ad pay off.

Kind sues Clif Bar in nutrition bar packaging dust-up.

Lexus keeps crown in J.D. Power reliability survey.Continue reading...

olympic effort

Team USA Drums Up Digital Support with Apps, Social Media Activations

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 10, 2014 10:38 AM

Outside the rinks and arenas and off the slopes, the most hotly contested Olympic "sport" is pin trading—buying, selling and trading the commemorative pins of the Olympic Games, a practice started in the 1980s that has grown into a virtual Olympic industry today.

Capitalizing on the practice, the US Olympic Committee launched Pinsanity, a social media and mobile game around pin trading.

"We're trying to be innovative and connect with new and younger consumers," Lisa Baird, CMO of the USOC, told Ad Age. "The game has a Facebook component—and a mobile component—which we think will do very well."

Participants can virtually trade hundreds of commemorative virtual pins for real-life merchandise such as the chance to win two official USOC baseball caps. Some pins will be unlocked only as certain achievements are realized by the actual Olympians such as major wins or medaling.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: IKEA, P&G, Rovio and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 29, 2014 09:13 AM

In the News

IKEA CEO vows e-commerce and delivery expansion as store sales fall. 

P&G will cut phosphate in all laundry soaps by 2016. 

Rovio reassures Angry Birds users it’s not complicit with NSA, rethinks ad relationships. 

Abercrombie & Fitch strips CEO of chairman title.

Beats by Dre stars Ellen Degeneres in Super Bowl ad.

Bruegger's unveils new restaurant prototype.

Cheerios plans Super Bowl spot reprising mixed-race family.

Chrysler posts third straight annual profit but Fiat scraps dividend to save cash.

Comcast grows TV subscribers for first time in 6 years.

Coors Light wants NHL Stadium Series in Rockies.

Dow Chemical swings to profit on sales growth in most businesses.

EA sees sales of older games drop.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Samsung, Ford, Puma and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 28, 2014 09:23 AM

In the News

Samsung keeps lead over Apple as Chinese smartphones gain share and evidence mounts that iPhone mania wanes.

Ford posts bullish earnings as company and James Franco get a jump on GM in Super Bowl promo.

Puma outfits English soccer club in brand-renewal attempt.

AT&T sees overwhelming demand for Beats music service.

Bitcoin exec accused of money laundering.

Comcast and Charter near deal for Time Warner Cable systems.

Disney finds success with ESPN app.

Gillette promotes Sochi Olympics campaign.

Girl Scouts test gluten-free cookies.

Google sees less geeky future with new glass designs, adding VSP prescriptions.

HSBC apologizes for UK ATM snafu. 

Honda exported more vehicles from US factories than it imported from Japan last year.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Apple, Microsoft, JCPenney and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 16, 2014 09:22 AM

In the News

Apple settles FTC complaint over app charges on kids with deal to refund $32.5 million, while China Mobile eyes iPhone sales bonanza, with more than 1 million pre-orders ahead of Friday's launch.

Microsoft may pay $2.6 billion to Samsung and others to make Windows phones as rumors cite Ericsson CEO to replace Steve Ballmer.

JCPenney plans to close 33 stores and slash 2,000 jobs.

AOL unloads most of Patch to private equity firm.

AT&T ends long-running American Idol sponsorship.

Axe features Kim Jong-Un lookalike in Super Bowl spot.

Best Buy reports holiday sales decline.

Charter is talking with Comcast about new bid for Time Warner Cable, report says.

Citi replaces debit cards after Target data breach.

Facebook revamps ads to compete with Google.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Yahoo, Alibaba, McDonald's and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 8, 2014 09:23 AM

In the News

Yahoo overhauls its advertising platforms as Mayer puts on a show at CES

Alibaba integrates its payment service with China's Sina Weibo.

McDonald's looks to use sustainable beef by 2016.

Airbus names new US chief.

Amazon makes it difficult for new hires to stick.

Barnes & Noble promotes Nook head to CEO.

Bentley sees steady luxury sales in 2014.

BlackBerry renews its vows to the smartphone keyboard.

Boeing must slash costs of building Dreamliner.

Comcast halts erosion in video subscribers.Continue reading...

sporting brands

NHL Hopes to Emulate NFL in Coverage, But Not Lawsuits

Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 27, 2013 02:36 PM

The NHL has long been in the shadow of pro football, baseball, and basketball in the American psyche, but Commissioner Gary Bettman has been plugging away to try and gain ground. 

The league’s latest effort takes a page directly from the National Football League's playbook by creating a new television series that gives fans a view into the behind-the-scenes world of professional hockey, Ad Age reports. The seven episodes of NHL Revealed: A Series Like No Other will debut on the NBC Sports Network, another brand that is battling to better compete against market leader ESPN. The NFL found an interested audience for the two behind-the-scenes shows it has been a part of: HBO’s Hard Knocks and Showtime’s Inside the NFL.

The plan is to follow pro players at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, as well as at the pro games being played outdoors this season, one of the league’s biggest successes in recent years. The games debuted in 2008 and have grown each year since, though it was not played in 2013 due to the disagreement between owners and players that shortened the season. There will be six outdoor games played this season, and only one of them will not be part of the NBC series—but that's only because it will be the focus of an HBO special.Continue reading...

video killed the _____ star

Comcast Raises Netflix, Amazon with Plan to Sell Movies for Streaming Through Set-Top Box

Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 15, 2013 11:47 AM

Cord cutters have made the last 12 months the worst ever for cable-TV subscriber retention, the Los Angeles Times reports. Perhaps that’s part of the reason that one of America’s largest cable operators is getting in on the streaming-video movement. After all, DVD sales have been falling while sales of streaming films and television programs increased 45 percent in the third quarter.

Comcast “plans to start selling movies for download and streaming through the cable operator's set-top boxes and its Xfinity TV website,” Reuters reports. By year’s end, Comcast's 20 million subscribers will be able to purchase movies and content that they can watch on their TV, computer, or mobile device. This differs from Comcast’s current on-demand offerings, which only allow viewers to "rent" a selection to watch during a set time window.Continue reading...

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