brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 16, 2012 10:52 AM
When Jack Norworth and Albert Von Tilzer wrote the words and music to “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” way back in 1908, neither one of them had ever been to a professional baseball game. The pair didn’t mind making some bucks, though, and were surely pleased when the tune caught on.
If they were writing the song today, of course, they’d probably charge Cracker Jacks a product-placement fee for giving it a mention. Frankly, Cracker Jack brand owner Frito-Lay should probably give Major League Baseball a bit of earnings since a good chunk of the product’s sales likely come from soft-hearted baseball fans who want their kids to experience the game like it was in the old days.
In those olden days, of course, Major League games were played during the day so getting sugared up with Cracker Jacks wouldn’t keep anybody up into the night. That didn’t happen till 1935 when the Cincinnati Reds shone a light down on a game against the Philadelphia Phillies. Now, of course, most professional games are played at night in order to rake in more dollars. Some of those games, especially in the postseason, can go well into the night.
And if you’re having trouble staying awake for the ninth inning, Cracker Jack is about to introduce a product that can help you out, with an extra twist that certainly snapped a few folks to pay attention. A hue and cry has been raised over Cracker Jack'D, which includes a "Cocoa Java" flavor that's just rolling out to stores. Cue a PR kerfuffle — not what Frito-Lay execs had in mind as the iconic brand celebrates its centenary.Continue reading...
now hear this
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 14, 2012 02:58 PM
The British Broadcasting Corporation went live on the airwaves with its first radio news bulletins on Nov. 14, 1922. The top news that day: a train robbery and the notorious London fog. The BBC is still an institution, even as the venerable broadcaster is gripped by an ethics scandal, as it marks the 90th anniversary of that first transmission by making another bit of history.
To mark the occasion, BBC Radio broadcast a three-minute collage from Blur frontman Damon Albarn, 2LO Calling, named for the first transmitter used in 1922. It played on every BBC radio channel at 5.33pm GMT simultaneously, reaching more than 80 million listeners on 55 radio stations, the broadcaster's first simulcast since that first transmission.
"The first broadcast by the 2LO 90 years ago marked the moment when radio moved from the realm of the 'amateur enthusiast' to the first proper public broadcasting service in Britain,” said Tim Boon, head of research and public history at London's Science Museum, which is hosting an exhibition about the anniversary that features the device.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 13, 2012 06:17 PM
Cheerwine is the last soft drink brand in America still owned by its founding family after four generations. The bubbly, wild cherry-flavored soft drink has a cult following and a distribution deal with Pepsi Beverages to be available in all 50 states by their 100th anniversary in 2017.
It’s known as the “Nectar of the South” by loyal fans, including indie rockers, The Avett Brothers, who performed a charity concert in October called Legendary Giveback: Tour of Duty, to benefit three family aid organizations: Big Brothers Big Sisters, Operation Homefront and the University of Virginia Children’s Hospital, as part of an overall campaign called “Legend” created by NY-based agency Woods Witt Dealy & Sons.
The marketing objective of “Legend” is to leverage an existing fan base and grow brand awareness from the regional to the national level. Fans unable to attend the sold-out concert in person were invited to go online and pledge their time to volunteer with any charity or community organization through Cheerwine's website or Facebook page in return for an access code to view a livestream of the concert.
Nearly 28,000 entered a related sweepstakes offering a grand prize of a VIP trip to the concert and a meet-and-greet with the Avett Brothers, as well as other prizes including pairs of tickets, Giveback T-shirts, posters and Cheerwine coupons. In addition, the town that pledged the most hours (Bristol, Tennessee) was awarded Cheerwine merchandise and cash to host live Legendary Giveback viewing parties, and more than 2,000 people pledged to give back over 30,000 hours to their local community.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 8, 2012 12:07 PM
The removal of Lance Armstrong’s name atop the winners list of seven straight Tours de France has also meant the removal of tens of millions of sponsorship dollars for the once-beloved cyclist.
One of those organizations that split from Armstrong has been sponsoring him since before he even was diagnosed with testicular cancer and even helped pay for some of his treatment: Oakley sunglasses. Well, Oakley apparently isn’t just disgusted with the whole sport of cycling, even though Armstrong clearly isn’t the only pro in recent years who has been nabbed for taking performance-enhancing drugs.
According to Bloomberg, after 12 months of negotiating, Oakley has signed on to be a sponsor of the Tour de France itself rather than any team or individual rider. That certainly seems like a safer way to go, though plenty of sponsors, such as Rabobank, have decided to leave the sport behind for now. The move comes as the Tour looks to rehabilitate its scandal-tarnished brand ahead of its centenary next year.
“I would like to see that the sport be what it once was,” Oakley CEO Colin Baden told Bloomberg. “It’s unfortunate what we’ve all experienced. It would be really nice to get back to the place where it’s admired, respected and understood.” It appears that getting to that point may take some time, but the Tour at least has one sponsor that will stick around and help the sport get through.
One thing Oakley also isn’t abandoning is Lance Armstrong’s Livestrong Foundation. “My wife’s a cancer survivor,” Baden told Bloomberg. “My belief and hope is that the foundation can continue its mission. Only time will tell, but it’s something we as a brand will still stand behind and we believe strongly that fighting cancer is a worthy cause.”
[Photo credit: Marc Pagani Photography / Shutterstock.com]
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 1, 2012 04:33 PM
Depending where you were, you may have celebrated Halloween on Oct. 31st. At Procter & Gamble, they've been celebrating the company's 175th anniversary.
That's right: P&G – mother of such consumer packaged goods icons as Tide, Pampers, and Comet, among others – is now 175 years old, but a look back at the company's history reveals that the whole endeavor might not have started if an errant flame and a rapscallion hadn’t done their dirty work all those years ago — or if an opinionated father and father-in-law hadn't intervened.
Or put another way, Mr. Procter's failures in England led to P&G's global success today — and Procter took a Gamble that paid off.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 24, 2012 12:07 PM
The Tour de France is turning 100 next year, its organizers hope with a clean slate. It will be the first one to take place after the historic removal of Lance Armstrong’s seven straight wins from 1999 to 2005, even if it can't do much about its yellow (jersey) branding that recalls Armstrong's Livestrong yellow.
The Tour announced its route for next summer’s big race on Wednesday. Tour de France President Jean-Etienne Amaury said organizers will keep fighting the “plague” of doping, even as he didn't mention Armstrong by name.
One thing the Tour has got to be thankful for is that, unlike the many sponsors of Armstrong that have quickly ended their relationships with him, none of their sponsors have cut the cord just yet, the Associated Press reports.
"We don't sponsor a team or an individual, we sponsor a sporting event that each year attracts great public enthusiasm," stated French bank LCL spokesman Pierre Baillot, the AP reports. "The wider public knows how to draw a distinction."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 10, 2012 01:02 PM
Coca-Cola may have just been ranked as the top global brand by brandchannel’s owner, Interbrand, but the beverage giant apparently thinks you might be able to help make its brand even stronger. Yes, you.
For more than 125 years, the company has had a logo that hasn’t changed a whole lot, as you can see above. As the Blank You Very Much design contest website notes, “the classic lettering was originally designed in the early 1900s by Coca-Cola’s former bookkeeper, Frank Robinson,” and the swirl “was added in 1969 to represent the unique contour of the glass bottles.”
Coca-Cola and the Blank You Very Much site have joined forces and are asking designers across America to work with the iconic logo in a fresh way, incorporating it into a design that could work as a t-shirt. Don’t worry, Coke fans; there is no plan to change the logo. In fact, the rules are very clear on how the logo can be used.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 5, 2012 02:19 PM
The Chanel Spring/Summer 2013 women's ready to wear runway show at the Grand Palais in Paris on Tuesday raised a few eyebrows, and not just for the new outfits from designer Karl Lagerfeld but for the design of the sets the 68 models strutted on, or the celeb wattage of Kanye West, Jennifer Lopez and her bedazzled four-year-old daughter in the front row.
It was hard to miss the 13 towering wind turbines that dominated the stage, and the solar panels that graced the stage and inspired the tiles on the catwalk. Green, it seems, must be the new black. What’s sexier than a few turbines? "Energy is the most important thing in life," Lagerfeld, who's known for his grand pronouncements, stated. "If I had to build a house, I would put (wind turbines) in the garden.”Continue reading...