Best Global Green Brands 2014

digital moves

The New York Times Takes Digital Journalism to New Peak With Snow Fall

Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 21, 2012 01:13 PM

Journalists have long cursed the rise of digital as being the death of long-form journalism. Who has time to sit down and consume 20,000 words on one topic when there is a vast array of bite-sized stories to feast on? In this era of "tl;dr," how can one devote so much time to a single issue when there are slide shows to click through, polls to take, and endless YouTube videos of cute cats and other animal antics to enjoy?

While many news organizations use all manner of digital wizardry to create more engaged news consumers, the term applies much more perfectly with those who actually sit down and consume those long-form stories that require a paper to devote one reporter’s time and energy over an extended period, a luxury not many publications can make in these tightly budgeted times. 

The New York Times, though, is thankfully making the effort and taking a chance on some of its readers settling into their favorite chair with their e-readers and tablets and digesting a story that may take them a good hour to read and watch. The paper has partnered with Byliner.com, a site dedicated to bringing such content to readers, to create short e-books that will sell for $2.99 a pop.

The first project of this original series, “Snow Fall” was just released on NYTimes.com to great acclaim on social media and is based on an article that John Branch wrote for the Times. It beautifully, interactively and dynamically — yet horrifically — tells the story of 16 of America’s top skiers and snowboarders who got buried in an avalanche in Washington state last year and is reminiscent of The Perfect Storm and Into Thin Air.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Microsoft, Suzuki, Apple and more

Posted by Dale Buss on December 4, 2012 09:01 AM

In the News

Microsoft denied "Killer Instinct" trademark, as Microsoft-Google patent fight rests on "fairness" definition and Motorola is denied injuction against Microsoft in patent suit. Microsoft-Intel push to combat Apple in tablet space, meanwhile, seen as "sputtering."

American Suzuki forges ahead with incentives amid US wind down.

Apple wins six new design patents, sees increasing pricing tension with retailers and Steve Jobs bio pic starring Ashton Kutcher heading to Sundance.

Applebee's plans to open "green" restaurant in New York's Harlem where Hot Bread Kitchen is a rising local brand.

Balenciaga hires designer Alexander Wang as creative chief.

Baxter agrees to buy medical-equipment maker Gambro in company's biggest acquisition.Continue reading...

executive decision

Can AOL Call Itself the Brand Company Without a Chief Marketing Officer?

Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 3, 2012 04:05 PM

AOL Inc. calls itself the "brand company, committed to continuously innovating, growing, and investing in brands and experiences that inform, entertain, and connect the world." Now the brand company is without a branding head.

Jolie Hunt, AOL's chief marketing officer and communications head since July, is leaving the company less than five months after being hired away from head marketer at Thomson Reuters. According to the Wall Street Journal, the travel-loving Hunt's departure comes one week before AOL unveils a $10 million branding campaign and marks the fourth top AOL marketing and communications executive to leave this year. The company announced back in February its intention to launch a branding campaign to get consumers to care about AOL again.

Hunt — who was responsible for "AOL’s global communications strategy, including internal and external communications; social media; corporate social responsibility and cause related initiatives; corporate events (and) AOL’s global brand development, partnerships and consumer marketing initiatives" — had previously served as SVP and global head of brand for Thomson Reuters.

In June, Maureen Sullivan, the SVP of brand, marketing and communications, was reassigned to GM of women's content and lifestyle brands. Instead of of filling the CMO role, AOL is now looking for a new chief communications officer, as AOL CEO Tim Armstrong told Ad Age today. Hunt's departure and the restructuring have yet to be announced, meanwhile; the only exec announcement was a new business development head for three of its tech properties.Continue reading...

holidaze

White House Puts Turkey Pardon to the Facebook Test, With Nate Silver Shout-Out

Posted by Shirley Brady on November 21, 2012 03:02 PM

The White House today was the scene of the annual pre-Thanksgiving turkey pardon, with Cobbler and Gobbler getting a reprieve — along with a shout-out to New York Times stats-cruncher Nate Silver ("once again, Nate Silver completely nailed it") and Facebook, the platform on which (in a first this year) the turkey pardon was opened to public voting. Portlandia-ready infographics (below) gave more details on each turkey's background to help voters decide. The First Family then went to Martha's Table, a food pantry in Washington, D.C., to help assemble Thanksgiving meals to be distributed to the less fortunate this holiday.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Microsoft, LG, Samsung and more

Posted by Dale Buss on November 13, 2012 09:01 AM

In the News

Microsoft announces the departure of Windows chief (and Ballmer's heir apparent) in wake of Windows 8 launch.

LG breaks through with new smartphone.

Hostess Brands starts closing plants as workers strike.

Acura brings Dr. Phil and Suze Orman into its Christmas promo campaign.

Apple finally gives in on employee perks.

Bojangles recruits American Idol winner Scotty McCreery for campaign.

Cadillac shows design chops in China.

Callaway Golf drives buzz on Twitter for new high-tech driver.Continue reading...

media meltdown

BBC in Crisis: A Media Giant Struggles to Regain Public Trust

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 12, 2012 05:05 PM

You know things are bad when the BBC is covering itself under the banner, "Crisis at the BBC." The British Broadcasting Corp. has fallen from its venerable pedestal, with its latest embarrassment triggering the resignation of senior executives, who are taking the fall for the corporation's newsgathering operation failing to maintain the ethical and journalistic standards at the heart of its brand promise.

BBC director-general George Entwistle resigned on Saturday, after only 55 days in the role, holding himself responsible for "unacceptable journalistic standards" on the BBC's flagship current-affairs program, Newsnight, after it failed to verify an accusation it aired against Lord McAlpine, a former Conservative Party treasurer, of child sex abuse in Wales. The BBC's director of news, Helen Boaden, and her deputy, Stephen Mitchell, have also stepped down.

No wonder Chris Patten, chairman of the BBC Trust, is calling the network a "ghastly mess."Continue reading...

political season

Math We Can Believe In: Nate Silver Becomes a Household Name

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 7, 2012 09:21 AM

It’s a great day for President Obama, and a pretty good one for Nate Silver as well, the political prognosticator and statistician for the New York Times whose model proved accurate – where Gallup’s, among others, did not. As Buzzfeed quipped, "Nate Silver Wins the Election."

Here’s how right he was: correctly predicted the winner of all 50 states yesterday, predicted Obama winning Virginia and Florida by very small margins and projected Obama would win the popular vote by 2%. The only race he missed: Montana's senate race.

“The real loser last night, outside of Mitt Romney and Republicans of course, was the political pundit class,” notes the Examiner. “The pundits have lost credibility as they swear up and down on the eve of the election that the polls must be wrong. Anything can happen, but in 2016 readers would best put their confidence in hard poll numbers as opposed to the “gut feeling” of someone on a cable news network.”

Formerly a standalone website, Silver's data-crunching FiveThirtyEight blog drew huge traffic for the NYTimes.com, which licensed it for three years in 2010. Turns out the controversy his predictions engendered brought supporters and critics to his site – like moths to the light – a best-of-breed example on the power of personal branding.Continue reading...

social media watch

The Revolution (and the U.S. Election) Will Be Instagrammed

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 6, 2012 04:26 PM

Facebook is encouraging its U.S. users to share that they've voted for an interactive map, while Twitter has set up its election page to track the #Election2012 winds of change. But it's Facebook's more visual sub-brand, theonce niche mobile photo-sharing app Instagram, that's the darling of the digital world for the 2012 U.S. presidential election cycle.

Since being snapped up by Facebook for $1 billion in April, and following its launch of an Android version of its app, the brand has grown its user base from 15 million to 80 million since January 1st, with an astonishing 4 billion photos posted this year to date. Further proof, if any is needed, that photo-sharing is hot: Coca-Cola is getting in on the game with its Happy Places app, while Twitter and Facebook are racing to improve their photo filters.

The 2012 U.S. presidential election day represents Instagram’s coming out party. Its usual feed today is replaced by a stream of voter’s ballots and related political imagery, which could exceed half a million uploads by election day's end. While encouraging its users to share their election day photos with the tag #ivoted, they are being reminded to not snap a pic of their election ballot, which could render it void in certain states. In another first, the New York Times is also featuring voters' Instagram photos on their homepage election coverage.Continue reading...

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