Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 20, 2012 03:04 PM
Black Friday is mere days away and America’s (make that North America's) most-devoted consumers are busy doing their stretches, dressing themselves in layers, and plotting their battle plan for early Friday morning.
Retailers, of course, would like to help them in any way possible in order to maximize the amount of money flowing into their cash registers throughout the punishing annual bricks-and-mortar portion of the shopathon. More of that activity, of course, is moving online and mobile — but for those committed to the physical act of shopping, they'll need help — and brand marketers are anticipating their needs.
For these seeking retail rejuvenation on Friday, a host of caffeinated beverages and coffee retailers are throwing incentives their way to get them to suck down as much as possible to refuel while on the run.
For those who tweet #dunkindonuts on Friday morning between 6 a.m. and noon Eastern, they’ll get put in the running to win one of six Keurig brewers and two boxes of Dunkin’s Hot Cocoa K-Cup packs. Meanwhile, 7-Eleven is handing out a free hot beverage for folks who come in on Friday and buy a Red Bull energy drink. Sonic Drive-Thru is opening early nationwide and offering its breakfast burrito at half price all day. What else could a crazed Black Friday consumer want? Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on November 8, 2012 10:15 AM
Mobile devices are fast becoming the accepted way for consumers to communicate, get information from the Internet, and take advantage of apps that help them do just about anything, which includes making travel easier. Case in point: Apple's Passbook, the new free app released to iPhone users with the upgrade to iOS6, is being pitched as an app that allows consumers to keep boarding passes from participating airlines (as well as movie tickets, retail coupons, loyalty cards and more) in one handy place.
Apple's new deal with London's Heathrow airport, which is looking to elevate its brand experience including rolling out digital improvements to make journeys better, offers a glimpse of how the application might function on a wider scale.
Imagine this: You walk past a store in the airport and a customized discount pops up on your iPhone. That's the basic premise — because passengers will be able to store their "WorldPoints" collected through a Heathrow loyalty card and access current retail offers and coupons with Passbook. Promotions and discounts will appear on a Passbook-enabled device throughout the customer's travel through the airport at the relevant stages of their journey. Heathrow's Passbook content will evolve to include both airport retailers and service providers. It's the first time such a program is being implemented in a European multi-retailer environment.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 16, 2012 04:19 PM
It might be a stretch to say that Toyota didn't see this coming. But Toyota Motor executives are likely stunned by how quickly the brand's latest recall fiasco has affected the standing of the once-sterling Toyota marque, at least in the minds of some consumers. And soon it could affect the breakneck pace of Toyota's sales bounce-back in the U.S. this year.
Last week, Toyota announced a recall affecting 7.4 million vehicles worldwide, the biggest number seen in the auto industry in 16 years. The recall is to correct faulty electric-window switches that could catch on fire, but Toyota had reported no accidents or injuries as a result of this problem.
Presumably because this "massive Toyota recall" of 2012 sounds too much like the "massive Toyota recall" of 2010 not to mention subsequent recalls, consumer perception of Toyota's brand "has plummeted" according to YouGov BrandIndex research. Its score slumped badly over the last few days and now occupies the bottom in a chart of 32 car brands tracked by the service, down from sixth place just a week earlier.Continue reading...
ready for takeoff
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 24, 2012 01:48 PM
Loews Hotels found its name in the news in recent days because the fire-alarm system of its Nashville hotel was set off by a drunken two-time Olympic gold medalist, snowboarder Shaun White. His schoolboy antics led to the whole place being evacuated and a contrite apology from the snowboarder. Not exactly the kind of security Loews wants to be known for.
Now the hotel chain is the first hospitality brand to participate in a first-of-its-kind security partnership with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. U.S. citizens who sign on to Loews’ loyalty-rewards program, YouFirst Platinum, gain complimentary enrollment into the DHS’s Global Entry program and allows guests to expedite airport screening with TSA PreCheck.
"Partnerships are integral to the way we do business as a brand," stated Loews Chairman Jonathan Tisch. "Our collaboration highlights the importance of the public and private sectors working together to improve hospitality for all our guests, whether that be at our hotels or traveling through an airport."Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 8, 2012 10:21 AM
Forget free GPS — Hertz is sweetening car rental deals by offering Gold Plus Rewards members free music downloads with every rental.
The brand's new Hertz Music Store, the digital dashboard for its Hertz's Movin' with Music program, lets renters acquire music from thousands of artists and in the kick-off the initiative, any Gold Plus Rewards member who rents a car through August 31, 2012 gets three free song downloads per rental.
"For Hertz customers, the connection between the open road and great music runs deep," stated Hertz Chairman and CEO Mark Frissora. "With the Hertz Music Store, loyal Hertz customers will have a new way to download, for free, the music they love, making their travel experiences even more enjoyable."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 30, 2012 03:03 PM
The outsourcing of jobs to foreign countries has been a constant presence for U.S. politicians, pundits, and the H.R. departments as they lay off Americans in recent years. The perception among consumers is that pretty much nothing is made in America anymore. And anything that is, isn’t totally high-quality.
This, of course, is completely bogus. While plenty of jobs have been shipped out of the country, there many companies that do all they can to make quality products and proudly hoist the "Made in America" banner. Those companies now have a major cheerleader in the American Brand Project, a patriotic social startup that rates just how American different companies are in order to help consumers make informed decisions on what to buy.Continue reading...
in it to win it
Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 19, 2012 02:13 PM
Hey kids — eating cereal can earn you valuable prizes! Yes, you’ve got your airline loyalty cards and your hotel loyalty cards. You’ve got your “Buy 10 and Get One Free” cards at the shoe store, liquor store, and every other store. You’ve got your cash-back loyalty programs. And now you’ve got your cereal loyalty program.
In the vein of MyCokeRewards.com, Kellogg this week kicks off its own loyalty program. The idea is for consumers to visit KelloggsFamilyRewards.com and enter codes on each Kellogg product that they purchase. They then become eligible for rewards as well as the opportunity each day to win $200 of groceries.Continue reading...
social media watch
Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 3, 2012 03:02 PM
In a bid to set a new standard for “Socially Devoted” companies, a new Socialbakers study identifies businesses that succeed with open and responsive social communications, creating a benchmark for how businesses can drive customer engagement through such social media strategies.
“By defining Socially Devoted companies, we wanted to start a discussion in the industry,” said Socialbakers CEO Jan Rezab. “Socially Devoted companies communicate openly, actively respond to fans and make sure customers receive a quick answer to feedback or questions. Socially Devoted companies set a new global standard that other businesses can adopt to improve their social media marketing strategy.”Continue reading...