Posted by Dale Buss on February 28, 2012 10:01 AM
Higher gasoline prices are beginning to scratch their way back into the minds of American consumers, and that's not good news for brand marketers. The concern: the more that drivers have to pay at the pump, and the more they worry about their own finances and the U.S. economy as a result, the less interested they'll be in other kinds of spending.
So far, there doesn't appear to be material damage from the glimmers of $5- and even nearly $6-a-gallon gasoline in America.
J.D. Power just reported that new-vehicle retail sales in February have been "strong" month-to-date and are likely to show an overall increase of about 5 percent from year-earlier retail sales. And Nation's Restaurant News surveyed some quick-serve chains and found no damage yet in the form of consumers staying away from drive-throughs because it's too expensive to get there.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 30, 2012 05:01 PM
Auto brands have been scrambling to differentiate themselves in January, whether with the splashes they made at the Detroit auto show or the PR/marketing machines they're operating on behalf of their Super Bowl advertisements. There's no month each year in which car marques do more to try to gain a brand edge.
And yet, new studies by huge players in the auto-brand perception game indicate that, for all these efforts, automotive brands aren't getting enough bang for their bucks. J.D. Power reports that preconceived notions drive American consumers' current perceptions of brand quality more than anything else — bad news for the domestic Big Three — while Consumer Reports finds that auto brands are increasingly being lumped together in consumers' minds.
Consumer Reports released its brand-perception survey, disclosing a fast-narrowing gap between traditionally strong brand names such as Toyota and traditional also-rans. The results showed Toyota (at #1) and Ford (#2) clustered in the first two positions, but No. 3 Honda was some distance behind, close to Chevrolet and Mercedes-Benz. Four of those top brands' scores dropped significantly from a year ago, closer to the pack, while Chevrolet managed to nudge up slightly, as did sibling brand Cadillac.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 12, 2012 09:02 AM
Archer-Daniels-Midland to cut 1,000 jobs.
Arby's hires ex-Burger King marketer as CMO.
Bank of America and other U.S. banks struggle with customer service on Twitter.
Bing passes Yahoo for the first time.
CBS sees Ashton Kutcher consider return to Two and a Half Men.
Chrysler nudges up Jeep Wrangler output.
Coca-Cola finds fungicide in orange juice.
Continental could add extra fuel tanks to deal with unscheduled stops.
Downton Abbey frenzy in America creates marketing hook for book industry.Continue reading...
start your engines
Posted by Dale Buss on December 1, 2011 06:02 PM
With many markers of the health of the U.S. auto industry improving these days, J.D. Power & Associates brings us another one: Americans are more satisfied with the new-vehicle sales process than they were a year ago. Among the luxury brands that lead in this score, Lexus still ranks highest in the researcher's new Sales Satisfaction Index, although Cadillac is sneaking up, and Mini heads up mass-market brands.
The notion that financially strained Americans actually would be happier about the auto-dealership experience is contra-intuitive, given that this experience used to rank right above getting teeth pulled on many consumers' bucket lists. There's also the fact that there have been about four million fewer people in the U.S. new-vehicle market even this year, three years into an industry recovery, than during the market's heyday several years ago.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 23, 2011 09:02 AM
Major economies try to reassure investors with joint statement, but markets continue to swoon.
HP defends hasty hiring of Meg Whitman as CEO, as Whitman hits the ground running.
Chanel files sweeping Internet trademark suit in Nevada.
Boeing plans a celebration for long-delayed delivery of Dreamliner.
Alibaba gets major investment from abroad.
Apple opens fifth (and largest) China store, in Shanghai.
Borders name and IP sale to Barnes & Noble blocked by judge.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on July 28, 2011 03:00 PM
Who said America's love affair with the car is over?
A new report by J.D. Power & Associates confirms what everyone in the U.S. auto industry already understands these days: American consumers like sheetmetal that is new, different and exciting.
For the second consecutive year in Power’s annual APEAL study (an acronym for Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout), recently launched all-new and redesigned models are substantially more appealing than their carryover counterparts.
The new snapshot also includes especially good news for the BMW, Chrysler and Hyundai brands.Continue reading...
stuck in neutral
Posted by Dale Buss on June 23, 2011 05:00 PM
The influential annual Initial Quality Survey of U.S. auto manufacturers by J.D. Power & Associates is out this afternoon, and it’s got some crisp verdicts for specific brands: Ford is stunningly in the dog house, while Toyota has drawn some relief.
Ford swooned to 23rd place in the 2011 rankings of brands, as graded by consumers for quality issues within three months of ownership, from a heady 5th-place finish last year. Interestingly, the main culprits in Ford’s fall were two technology sub-brands that it has been promoting vigorously over the last year: Sync and EcoBoost.Continue reading...
customer relationship management
Posted by Shirley Brady on February 17, 2011 06:00 PM
Gary Tucker, SVP of global services and emerging industries at J.D. Power and Associates, discusses the just-released 2011 Customer Service Champions report.
After looking at more than 1,000 different companies, JDP identifies 40 brands for outstanding customer service, including Jaguar, JetBlue and Zappos.