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In the News: Amazon, Google, Virgin and more

Posted by Dale Buss on April 16, 2012 09:01 AM

Amazon looms as nemesis of book publishers, as children's book publisher pulls its titles.

Apple denies designer Philippe Starck's claim of 'revolutionary' device.

Arby's makes social media blunder over Rush Limbaugh advertising.

Archie comics legal battle heats up.

Audi may select its North American plant site this week, with Mexico the favoriteAutomotive News says.

CBS emphasizes hard news to regain an edge.

Citigroup reports better-than-expected revenue growth.Continue reading...

media brands

Al-Jazeera Ready to Play Ball?

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 5, 2012 12:02 PM

To many, soccer makes the world go round and, if this is true, the country of Qatar is poised to take advantage of the situation. In 2022, Qatar will be the first Arab country to host the World Cup, the world’s most-watched sporting event, and it is building innovative, air-conditioned stadia that will be partially disassembled after the event and sent to less wealthy countries.

Meanwhile, the television-news network owned by Qatar, Al-Jazeera, is using soccer in a different way.

Reuters reports that Al-Jazeera, the most-watched channel in the Arab world, is “racing to launch a new French channel in early June in time for the European Football championships, offering a service for about 11 euros per month.” To get ready, the network has trademarked the channel’s name, beIN Sport, across the globe.Continue reading...

wisdom of the crowd

GutCheck Launches Instant Research Communities

Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 30, 2012 11:04 AM

GutCheck is now out of beta with its latest product, Instant Research Communities, which offers brands and marketers quick access to consumer communities on their websites, Facebook fan pages, Twitter, and Google+.

GutCheck’s automated recruitment engine instantly qualifies respondents from these pools for private platform discussion and review of proposed business decisions.

We first covered GutCheck last year and spoke with Matt Warta, GutCheck CEO when the Denver start-up had just won the People’s Choice award (and $1 million in free advertising) at the DEMO Spring 2011 conference. “We’ve lowered the economic barrier to this kind of research,” Warta told us then.

Now it’s even lower, and the research is more refined. We caught up with Warta, in New York for the launch of GutCheck Instant Research Communities at The Advertising Research Foundation 2012 Re:think conference, and asked about reaction to their disintermediation of traditional Market Research Online Communities (MROCs).Continue reading...

name game

Mondelēz, Mondelēz: Kraft Employees Name Soon to Be Spun Off Snacks Unit

Posted by Dale Buss on March 21, 2012 01:43 PM

What's in a name? Kraft Foods is about to find out, after announcing today that Mondelēz International is the moniker of the corporate global snack-foods unit that it will spin off by the end of this year, as announced last August.

"Mondelay," you say? Nay, nay! No need to dust off your high school French. The new name — pronounced "Mohn-dah-LEEZ" — is a Kraft-coined word that, the company explained in a press release, is intended to evoke the idea of "delicious world."

"Monde" derives from the Latin (and French) word for "world," the company explained, and "dēlez" is a "fanciful expression of 'delicious.'" And, of course, "International" captures "the global nature of the business."

Even though it won't be consumer-facing, pronunciation will be a challenge ("mon-de-lay," "mon-de-less," or "mon-de-leez"?) for the new name which was, as it turns out, employee-sourced.

Last fall, Kraft invited staffers around the world to suggest names and received suggestions from more than 1,000 employees. The winner was inspired by separate suggestions from two employees, one in North America and one in Europe.Continue reading...

web watch

IPO Looming, "All Grown Up" Yelp Looks to Boost Ad Revenues

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 20, 2012 11:01 AM

Yelp, the user-generated review website, quietly launched seven years ago with a cartoon-like logo designed by YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley.

Now known for its distinctive 'burst' logo and spanning the globe, it plans to raise as much as $100 million in an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange on March 2nd.Continue reading...

sip on this

Seattle's Best Invites Coffee Lovers to Create Dream Drinks

Posted by Dale Buss on February 9, 2012 11:31 AM

Starbucks is pressing the envelope in plenty of ways with its namesake brand, but the company also is continuing to innovate through its sibling brand, Seattle's Best Coffee. The newest wrinkle: a Facebook-based contest called "Create Your Deliciousness."

Seattle's Best has launched a year-long marketing campaign "inspired by the brand's mission to bring great coffee to everyone," the company said in a press release. And what better way to do that than to let every individual define what they mean by "great," in their own unconventional coffee combinations and dream drinks?Continue reading...


Can Domino’s Continue Pizza Turnaround with Crowdsourcing - or Are Fans Crowdsourced Out?

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 9, 2012 10:58 AM

Domino’s has gone public — not in the IPO sense, but by crowdsourcing ideas to improve the brand via a Facebook-based customer feedback intiatives it's calling Think Oven.

It's all part of the brand's two-year-old initiative to become more relevant and increase loyalty (and business) by engaging consumers (customers and non-customers) in its reinvention.Continue reading...

place branding

Connecticut Crowdsources Rebranding

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 27, 2012 10:20 AM

Rebranding a state can be a dicey proposition. As the Wall Street Journal noted in an article about New Mexico's desire to come up with a new marketing slogan,

New Jersey hired a consultant a few years ago to come up with a new tourism slogan. The result? "New Jersey: We'll Win You Over." That may have been an improvement over its 1970s tagline, "New Jersey's Got It," which inspired innumerable jokes about venereal disease. But state officials thought "We'll Win You Over" sounded defensive and spiked the campaign.

So we're watching with interest another rebranding project in New York City's tri-state area: Connecticut, which has been saving its pennies and now has $22 million in its coffers to spend on boosting tourism and business investment in the state. The Nutmeg State hasn’t spent any money in the last two years on tourism and is now opening up its wallet to try and rebrand itself over the next two years.Continue reading...

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