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Gap Goes Back to TV for 'Back to Blue' Campaign

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 16, 2013 01:45 PM

Following a four-year hiatus, Gap is returning to TV to tout its latest campaign—called Back To Blue—with two videos, underscoring the brand's recent turnaround. Gap sales have steadily risen for six consecutive quarters, placing it in the best performance leaderboard position for an apparel company in the Standard & Poor 500 Retailing Index this year.

The TV campaign is the linchpin of its "back to school"-timed campaign, which is its biggest to date. The three-screen strategy includes digital and social elements across its websites and social media channels (including the hashtag #backtoblue and videos via Twitter's Vine), as well as in-store digital engagement via partner Styld.by. The "Back to Blue" TV ads feature youthful renditions of Billy Joel's "Just The Way You Are," performed by the singer's daughter Alexa Ray Joel, as well as George Harrison's "For You Blue," which is performed by his son, Dhani Harrison. 

"The entire Back to Blue campaign embodies what it means to be comfortable in your own skin," said Gap CMO Seth Farbman, in a press release. "As a brand that is known for expressing itself through sight, sound and motion, we wanted to bring this idea to life through the voices of two individuals who are recognized for staying true to who they want to be."Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Danone, Gap, Whole Foods and more

Posted by Dale Buss on September 16, 2013 09:36 AM

In the News

Danone accused of bribing hospitals to use its powdered milk in China. 

Gap returns to TV advertising after four years. 

Whole Foods Market plans to open store in low-income Chicago neighborhood.

Absolut launches global "Transform Today" campaign.

Boeing closes in on South Korean fighter-jet deal but Dreamliner runs into more turbulence.

Chili’s plans to install tabletop computer screens.

China Telecom cuts iPhone subsidies. 

Chrysler reluctantly moves toward IPO soon.

Citi hypes double points in New York.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Retailers Still Divided as Meetings Convene Over Compensation for Bangladesh Victims

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 12, 2013 06:43 PM

Nearly nine months have past since the Tazreen factory fire killed 112 people in Bangladesh, and just five months since the collapse of Rana Plaza in Dhaka took the lives of over 1,100 people, but the parties involved are still at odds as new battles over victim compensation and factory improvements arise.  

Twelve companies, partners in the global IndustriALL union are meeting in Geneva to discuss long-term compensation to the victims of the two disasters in Bangladesh, overseen by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), which is acting as a neutral chair. The participants include Zara-owner Inditex, the Primark discount chain owned by Associated British Foods, Canada's Loblaw Cos Ltd, European retailer C&A and Spanish department store chain El Corte Ingles.

"The families and the injured have already waited far too long," said Monika Kemperle, assistant general secretary of IndustriALL in a statement, according to Reuters. "Companies who are serious about conditions in their Bangladeshi production chain can send a clear sign of their sincerity at these meetings."Continue reading...

corporate citizenship

US Retailers Detail Implementation of Controversial Bangladesh Safety Plan

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 21, 2013 12:54 PM

Walmart, Gap and other US retailers met yesterday in Chicago to implement their controversial, independent Bangladesh factory safety plan that was created after multiple factory accidents, including the Rana Plaza collapse in April that claimed more than 1,100 workers, spurred global outrage. 

20 US retailers including Macy's and Target, as well as new signatories Costco, Intradeco Apparel and Jordache Enterprises make up the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety. The group, which formed a separate safety plan from the European retailer-dominated Accord on Bangladesh Building and Fire Safety, has pledged to have safety standards in place by Sept. 10, and has reportedly already dispursed $45 million in funds in part to hire safety inspection staff in Bangladesh.

The five-year, voluntary plan agrees to train workers and inspect factories while requiring Bangladesh factory owners to pay for safety renovations, though the Alliance will provide $100 million in low-cost loans.

The plan has come under fire due to its non-binding nature—an attribute that was top-of-mind in the European-based agreement, which was signed by over 70 global retailers including H&M, Inditex and Primark.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Apple, JCPenney, Walmart and more

Posted by Dale Buss on August 20, 2013 09:25 AM

In the News

Apple plans to ship two new iPhone versions next month as it hires Nike FuelBand consultant. 

JCPenney slows sales decline.

Walmart, Gap and other retailers meet to implement Bangladesh safety plan.

BMW studies placing assembly plant in Mexico.

Barnes & Noble declares truce with Simon & Schuster.

Best Buy registers profit growth from cost-cutting.

Coors Light rewards drinkers' "day-to-night" transitions in promo.

Cummins supplies Nissan with diesel engine for Titan pickups.

Flowers Foods sees Hostess business as incremental.

Furniture Brands gets survival advice.Continue reading...

retail

Gap Plans Tumblr Takeover as Part of Greater Omnichannel Retail Strategy

Posted by Barry Silverstein on August 14, 2013 02:22 PM

Gap is launching the biggest marketing campaign in its history—dubbed "Back to Blue"—this fall with a global media push that includes the brand's return to TV after a hiatus since 2009, as well as print and outdoor advertising, social media, in-store promotions and digital marketing. In fact, Gap will be the first brand to take over all mobile ads on Tumblr for one day, August 29.

"Pop culture doesn't really start on TV anymore," Rachel Tipograph, Gap's global director of digital and social media, told Mashable. "Pop culture starts on the Internet. When you think about what community is creating pop culture on the Internet, it's Tumblr."

The Tumblr campaign includes a content creation contest, where the winning work will earn a spot on Gap's Tumblr and be turned into Tumblr mobile ads. There are also nearly 10 "Back to Blue Moments" videos on its YouTube page. 

The impetus for "Back to Blue" is two-fold, according to Seth Farbman, Global Chief Marketing Officer for Gap.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: JCPenney, Dole Foods, Lincoln and more

Posted by Dale Buss on August 13, 2013 09:34 AM

In the News

JCPenney sees divisive director and largest shareholder Bill Ackman resign from board as George Soros backs CEO.

Dole Food agrees to $1.2-billion buyout.

Lincoln tutors car dealers on how to sell luxury to younger generation.

AOL firing of Patch executive gets messy.

BlackBerry ponders sale to Canadian institutions.

Chipotle and Jack in the Box settle trademark lawsuit.

Corona sponsors Marc Anthony tour.

eBay trials personalized fashion recommendations. 

Facebook adds tie-in with OpenTable restaurant bookings. 

Gap woos Gen Y with denim campaign.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Lululemon Has No Interest in Plus-Size Consumers, Insiders Say

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 1, 2013 03:47 PM

Lululemon Athletica is becoming quite the newsmaker. Since the yoga apparel brand made headlines back in March after pulling its proprietary 'luon' yoga pants off shelves due to "sheerness," the company can't seem to stay out of the limelight.

After ousting its chief product officer, losing its CEO and being berated by disappointed customers, the brand is now under fire again for an offense that has become a common topic among today's clothing giants. In an article by The Huffington Post, former Lululemon employees accused the brand of purposely shunning plus-size customers, relegating larger-sized apparel to a "heap" in the backs of stores.

While most of the merchandise was displayed "out on the floor, hung on the walls, or folded neatly in cabinets," larger sizes, such as 10s and 12s, were not stocked on those same shelves, and were rarely offered in the latest styles and prints. "All the other merchandise in the store was kind of sacred, but these were thrown in a heap," former employee Elizabeth Licorish told HuffPost. "It was definitely discriminatory to those who wear larger sizes."Continue reading...

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