media brands

The Times, It Is A-Changin'

Posted by Barry Silverstein on March 3, 2011 01:00 PM

Print newspapers may be dying a slow death, but those embroiled in a fight for survival are rolling out a whole slew of new ideas designed to attract new customers and keep the old ones.

The New York Times, one of the most venerable media brands in the US (and the world), is one example of a paper that's most definitely trying to keep up with the times.

The Times recently introduced a social news iPad app,, that pulls data from Twitter and to provide users with a personalized news experience. But that's just the latest salvo from a publication that seems to be reinventing itself on the fly.

The Times still permits free online access (to registered users) to its content, but a paywall is looming that will lock down some of its information and make it available only to paid online subscribers.Continue reading...

social media watch

What's New: Facebook, Twitter, Groupon, Quora & more

Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 2, 2011 10:00 AM


... refreshes its privacy policy in plain English

... will continue to share users' phone numbers (and spark privacy concerns)

... releases new comments plug-in for other sites

... is blamed for one in five US divorces

... builds traction for Ford's "Go. Do. Adventures" campaign

... will launch Premier League interactive "show" on Friday

... runs "Show Off Your Label" game in Fair Trade apparel promotion

... adds interactive flight booking with Malaysia Airlines

... may muscle into Twitter's space with Beluga acquisitionContinue reading...

brand news

In the News: Apple, Groupon, Twitter and more

Posted by Dale Buss on February 28, 2011 09:00 AM

Branding NewsThe King's Speech won four Oscars including Best Picture at the Academy Awards last night, unseating early favorite The Social Network; click here for more coverage.

Apple's iPad 2 rumored to come in white as design guru Jony Ive may return to the UK.

Audi counts on accelerated sales in the US.

Baseball Hall of Famer Duke Snider dies.

Berkshire Hathaway is looking for “more major acquisitions,” Warren Buffett says.

Blackstone wins bidding for U.S. assets of Centro for $9.4 billion.Continue reading...

red carpet

Oscars Watch: LivingSocial Sets the Stage with Deals

Posted by Shirley Brady on February 27, 2011 05:00 PM

LivingSocial has unveiled its pair of commercials running during tonight's Oscars telecast, both touting the group deal site's savings on fun experiences with a "We'll set the stage, you play the part" tagline. Above, a couple's cultural red carpet with tango big finish; and below, a couple acts out skydiving, massage and more.Continue reading...

digital moves

Spotify Eyes Global Growth With DST Boost

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 22, 2011 10:30 AM

Digital Sky Technologies, better known as DST, is the VC firm behind Facebook, Groupon and Zynga. It's also leading a funding round for Spotify, the European streaming music startup valued at around $1 billion. So far, €82.3 million has been raised in a round of $100 million. 

With a boost from DST, Spotify is looking to go global, but strategically, commenting to PaidContent: “There are scenarios in which we’d enter many, many markets that would require raising external capital. Or you could adopt a market-by-market approach which doesn’t require further investment. We’re still working out which markets are our priorities.”Continue reading...

Groupon's Super Bowl Rebound Romance: China

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 21, 2011 01:00 PM

The march of brands into China continues apace: Facebook is pursuing its billion-user dream by courting Baidu, luxury brands such as Marni and Armani are not only opening stores but e-commerce sites, and InterContinental is developing a hotel brand specifically for China.

Among the most closely-watched China entrants: Groupon, which is bouncing back from its Super Bowl fumble in the US to banking on a bright and shiny future with China.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: BMW, BBC, BP and more

Posted by Dale Buss on February 21, 2011 09:00 AM

Branding News

Academy Awards aims to capture TV/Twitter audience.

Adidas invites fans to name matchball at London 2012 Olympics.

Aldi takes a bite out of the Big Apple. 

Apple may bring out new Macbook Pro line this week.

BBC scraps BBC America newscast, looks to expand US distribution for BBC World  News channel.

BMW to unveil new model.Continue reading...

brand trainwrecks

FTD and 1-800-Flowers Should Have Nipped Valentine's Woes in the Bud

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 18, 2011 02:00 PM

Valentine's Day is the one time of the year you want to say it with flowers — and not to apologize.

Yet FTD and 1-800-Flowers both spent Valentine's Day on virtual bended knee, apologizing to the thousands of customers each brand managed to irk on what should have been their biggest sales day of the year.

1-800-Flowers, which launched the first Facebook store in 2009, somehow managed to not deliver thousands of floral arrangements that were ordered online, and is now vowing to make it up the intended recipients and the purchases. A character named Tina Flowers on its Facebook page is reaching out to disgruntled customers to make up for the mishap.

And FTD found itself in the doghouse this Valentine's Day after partnering with a brand recovering from its own PR disaster — Groupon.Continue reading...

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