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brand news

In the News: Apple, Google, Volkswagen and more

Posted by Dale Buss on May 3, 2013 09:15 AM

In the News

Apple dodges $9 billion in US taxes with bond deal.

Google named Advertiser of the Year

Volkswagen makes $10 million donation to the National Mall.

Adidas sales drop on weakening Reebok brand.

Barnes & Noble begins support of Google apps on Nook.

Beam sales rise because of "formula run" on Maker's Mark.

Diet Coke slims down its vending machines.

Ford adds jobs and raises capacity to make pick-up trucks.

Geritol seeks new life with younger consumers.

Huffington Post brings rapid-response "native" ads to its home page.Continue reading...

sip on this

PepsiCo Keeps Marketing Top-of-Line Despite a Dip in Earnings

Posted by Dale Buss on April 19, 2013 02:43 PM

PepsiCo continues to ramp up marketing investments for its core brands including Pepsi, Gatorade, Lay's and Quaker. And so while first-quarter earnings showed a drop of 5 percent from a year earlier, the increased advertising outlays may be the harbinger of future top- and bottom-line payoffs from brands that critics say were underexposed for years.

Besides, PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi said this week, the additional marketing investments—which she promised for last year to the tune of an additional half-billion in global expenditures on core brands—are being offset by the fruits of the company's $3-billion productivity program.

"With the productivity we're unlocking, we're able to invest in growth drivers like advertising and new-product launches to simultaneously drive margin improvement," she told analysts on a conference call, according to Advertising Age. But, she cautioned, "Any growth we achieve in one area takes from another area where we compete."Continue reading...

celebrity brandmatch

Diet Coke Releases New Taylor Swift 'Music That Moves' Spot

Posted by Alicia Ciccone on April 11, 2013 08:12 PM

Pepsi isn't the only cola brand that has a songstress on its payroll. Diet Coke has been busy collaborating with golden-girl Taylor Swift for the next installment of its "Stay Extraordinary" campaign. 

Debuting during the American Idol broadcast on FOX Thursday night, Swift's new spot, "Music That Moves," highlight's the Grammy-winner's unique approach to song writing. Created by Droga5, the spot captures Swift in her natural element, penning lyrics whenever inspiration strikes—with a Diet Coke in hand, of course.Continue reading...

celebrity designers

Diet Pepsi Teams Up with Vern Yip for Limited Edition Designer Mini Cans

Posted by Dale Buss on March 29, 2013 03:16 PM

Converging with a major trend in branding, Diet Pepsi asked HGTV star designer Vern Yip to come up with a new limited-edition mini-can that will invite consumers to "Sip in Style" this spring. The soon-to-hit shelves can continues the brands' multi-platform "Love Every Sip" campaign that has starred Sofia Vergara in TV ads.

While arguably Yip comprises only a "light" instance of the phenomenon, Diet Pepsi's collaboration with him also adds to the growing number of partnerships between celebrities and brands to fill or originate "creative director" spots, including Alicia Keys and BlackBerry, Swizz Beatz and Reebok, Marc Jacobs and Diet Coke, Polaroid and Lady Gaga, Bud Light Platinum and Justin Timberlake and Intel and Will.i.am.Continue reading...

package design

The Shape of Things to Come: Pepsi's New Bottle Design Reinvigorates Brand

Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 24, 2013 09:03 PM

Pepsi is redesigning its 16 and 20-ounce bottles for the first time since 1977 — one in a series of recent moves (see: the recent Super Bowl halftime show sponsorship and related landmark partnership with superstar Beyonce) as PepsiCo attempts to revitalize its flagship brand after a few mis-steps that led to the brand losing market share to rival Coca-Cola's Diet Coke brand in 2011.

The new design features a swirled grip on the bottom portion of the bottle, a shorter label edged in a "cola-colored" border and an enlarged version of its current globe logo and applies to Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi Max and Pepsi Next. 

"This new bottle is the next milestone in Pepsi's Live For Now marketing campaign," stated Angelique Krembs, VP of marketing for the Pepsi trademark. "Our single serve bottle is the most visible and tangible connection point we have with our consumers, and we love how the new bottle expresses our brand DNA."

"We started with single serve, because it is the package you're seen drinking and holding," Krembs told Ad Age. "The longer-term view is this new design system would eventually hit all touch points beyond packaging, to be honest, but certainly all other package types, as it applies."

According to PepsiCo's press release, "The new bottle's bold swirl and elevated profile reflect the brand's attributes and youthful spirit, capturing the excitement of now for Pepsi consumers. The etched, grip-able bottom allows consumers to have a more stimulating, tactile interaction with the bottle itself."Continue reading...

celebrity brandmatch

Miller Lite Brings Back 'Miller Time' and 'All Star' Approach in New Campaign

Posted by Dale Buss on March 8, 2013 06:12 PM

Miller Lite is turning to an old page in its playbook, with a new gang of celebrities designed to boost the flagging brew in a fresh slate of TV commercials served up on another iconic platter for the franchise, "Miller Time." The new go-to guys for Miller Lite include Vince Vaughn, Ken Jeong, Chuck Liddell and Questlove.

But interestingly, Miller brand managers say that their new campaign (watch below) will not seek to trade too heavily on the appeal or persona of any one of its new stable of celebrity pitch people. One ad wonders what it would be like to hang out with actor Jeong, who will star in the upcoming Hangover Part III—but he's self-deprecating in the spot.

"Celebrity is not our strategy," Con Williamson, chief creative officer at Saatchi & Saatchi, the agency behind the campaign, told Ad Age. "Our strategy is solely focused on Miller Time." That, of course, will leave Miller strategically opposed to the growing number of tight tie-ups between beverage brands and individual celebrities, including Justin Timberlake and Bud Light Platinum, Taylor Swift and Diet Coke, and Beyonce and Pepsi.Continue reading...

brand and bottle

Miller Lite Brings Back 'All Star' Approach in New Campaign

Posted by Dale Buss on March 8, 2013 06:11 PM

Miller Lite is turning to an old page in its playbook, with a new gang of celebrities designed to boost the flagging brew in a fresh slate of TV ads served up on another iconic platter for the franchise, "Miller Time." The new go-to guys for Miller Lite include Vince Vaughn, Ken Jeong, Chuck Liddell and Questlove.

But interestingly, Miller brand managers say that their new campaign will not seek to trade too heavily on the appeal or persona of any one of its new stable of celebrity pitch people. One ad wonders what it would be like to hang out with actor Jeong, who will star in the upcoming Hangover Part III—but he's self-deprecating in the spot.

"Celebrity is not our strategy," Con Williamson, chief creative officer at Saatchi & Saatchi, told Advertising Age. "Our strategy is solely focused on Miller Time." That, of course, will leave Miller strategically opposed to the growing number of tight tie-ups between beverage brands and individual celebrities, including Justin Timberlake and Bud Light Platinum, Taylor Swift and Diet Coke, and Beyonce and Pepsi.Continue reading...

executive decision

PepsiCo CMO Salman Amin Leaves for S.C. Johnson

Posted by Dale Buss on March 8, 2013 05:43 PM

PepsiCo's CMO, Salman Amin, is leaving the company for S.C. Johnson on a high note, having helped CEO Indra Nooyi deliver over the last year on a number of crucial, marketing-based promises, including something of a turnaround for the company's flagship Pepsi brand, which is still duking it out with Coca-Cola and other beverage giants.

The departure of the company's Global Chief Marketing Officer from PepsiCo's Purchase, NY, HQ to Racine, Wis.-based S.C. Johnson—maker of Pledge, Glade and other household products—was disclosed in an internal memo at PepsiCo, the Wall Street Journal reported today.

Amin's exit opens up a top marketing job at PepsiCo just as the company has been reporting gains in sales and market share for Pepsi, having doubled down on marketing following the company's market share slip in recent years in U.S. sales even behind Diet Coke.

A PepsiCo veteran of more than two decades, Amin became PepsiCo CMO only last May. He was able to leverage a $600 million increase in Pepsi's annual marketing budget and a refocusing of spending on top brands including Pepsi and Gatorade into significant gains. "Salman has made contributions that have touched nearly every market in which we do business," said Zein Abdalla, president of PepsiCo, in the memo, according to Ad Age.

Amin also launched the first-ever global marketing campaign ("Live for Now") for Pepsi and inked pop star Beyonce to a $50 million partnership that included the halftime performance during last month's Super Bowl telecast.Continue reading...

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