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brand news

Brand News: P&G, Heinz, Apple and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on December 23, 2014 09:08 AM

Heinz happy

TOP STORIES

P&G sells Camay and (outside of North America and the Caribbean) Zest to Unilever to bolster Mexico presence as company named top U.S. ad spender of 2014 by Kantar Media.

Heinz ketchup launches Happiness social marketing campaign.

Apple pushes first automatic security upgrade for Mac as Tim Cook named CNN's best CEO for a comeback year.

North Korea Internet service knocked offline (and restored) as Sony situation sees studio schedule limited release for The Interview.

Hyatt introduces free Wi-Fi at all properties worldwide while Microsoft and Google lobby against Marriott's Wi-Fi moves.Continue reading...

sustainability

Sustainable Brands: The Greening of Apple Under Lisa Jackson

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 4, 2014 10:44 AM

Apple places high priority on its environmental credentials, including launching a microsite on its eco-responsibility, releasing "Better," an Earth Day video narrated by CEO Tim Cook, and placing ads about its sustainability progress in newspapers worldwide proclaiming “There are some things we want every company to copy” in a not-so-veiled jab at Samsung.

But Apple's biggest green commitment happened just over a year ago, when it hired former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency director Lisa Jackson to help clean up its act. According to the company's 2014 environmental responsibility report, she’s doing a good job—even while there is still room to grow. Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Apple's Cook Comes Out, Microsoft Band and more

Posted by Dale Buss on October 30, 2014 09:12 AM

TOP STORIES

Apple CEO Tim Cook says he's "proud to be gay" in Bloomberg Businessweek public coming out essay following LGBT rights speech (above) as his company looks to sell iPhone in Iran while CurrentC, rival mobile-payment system to Apple Pay, is hacked.

Microsoft unveils Microsoft Band fitness wearable as it finishes round of previously announced layoffs.

Burger King clears antitrust hurdle with Tim Hortons deal.

Kohl's launches badly needed makeover and details Thanksgiving opening plan.

SodaStream shifts toward carbonated water and plans to close controversial West Bank factory.Continue reading...

tech in the spotlight

Apple Reveals World's Thinnest Tablet, Confirms Apple Pay Launch on Monday

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 16, 2014 05:06 PM

Wall Street may have shrugged, but will consumers stampede to the stores yet again following Apple's latest product reveal?

That was the big question following today’s Apple press event, which offered few surprises as details of slimmer tablets and fuller-sized versions were accidentally published along with a new user guide yesterday. 

Just in time for the holidays, here’s a recap of today’s announcements by the world's most valuable brand: Continue reading...

branding together

Apple Squashes Rumor Mill Over Beats Music Plans

Posted by Abe Sauer on September 23, 2014 11:08 AM

"Apple Plans To Shut Down Beats Music." "Apple denies it is shutting down Beats Music."

Those headlines, from TechCrunch and USA Today respectively, came with hours of one another, proving that even if Apple is not "shutting down" Beats Music, it's sensitive about its role as proud new papa.

It also signals that Apple watchers and Beats fans alike are jumpy, maybe even distrustful, about what the big Apple might have in store for the popular music brand started by Pepsi-endorsed game-changer Dr Dre, whose headphones to streaming music brand arguably has more street cred and cool than Apple's white earbuds and iTunes combined.

Oddly, Dre (the richest hip-hop artist ever thanks to the Apple deal, Forbes announced today) and the Beats brand were mostly MIA during Apple's big iPhone/Apple Watch product reveal earlier this month. And given the subsequent news that Apple is developing a new music format with U2 (linked to Apple by Beats' Jimmy Iovine and a long relationship with Steve Jobs), it could appear that the honeymoon following the $3.2 billion Apple-Beats marriage is over.Continue reading...

sustainability

Brands Unite Around Climate Change Ahead of UN Summit

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 22, 2014 02:01 PM

A tipping point has been reached vis-à-vis climate change. Sunday's People’s Climate March (supported by Ben & Jerry's and a host of organizations) drew an estimated 400,000 people in New York alone, making it the largest climate march in history. And it's not just private citizens, but corporate citizens that are taking a stand in response to customer demands ahead of Tuesday’s opening of the UN Climate Summit in New York.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon has identified the issue as a top priority and is using NYC's Climate Week to set the stage for the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change taking place in Paris in December 2015.

On the eve of this week's Climate Summit, companies are speaking out and aligning their brands with popular sentiment by making pledges to help fight global warming, with the Climate Group announcing commitments by "100 of the world's largest companies" to adopt renewable power by 2020.

Case in point: Apple CEO Tim Cook, barely catching his breath from a record opening weekend for iPhone 6 sales, flew from California to attend a Climate Week kick-off event in New York, where he commented that "Apple has a very core value of leaving the world better than we found it."

In addition to calling Apple's new HQ the "greenest building on the planet," Cook announced that the company's 2013 goal to get its data centers fully powered by renewable energy sources is six percent shy of that goal.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Apple, Alibaba, Climate Change and more

Posted by Dale Buss on September 22, 2014 09:14 AM

TOP STORIES

Apple sets new record with 10 million iPhone 6 sales its first weekend, dispatching Tim Cook to Palo Alto and Angela Ahrendts to Sydney to meet fans, while pre-scheduled Joan Rivers endorsement backfires on social media. The music industry, meanwhile, is watching Apple's Beats acquisition closely amid rumors it may fold the service.

Alibaba's next step, following world's largest IPO: helping US small businesses.

Jaguar taps Stella McCartney for XE launch at Paris auto show, where MINI will show new five-door hatchback among other auto brand reveals.

Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Nestle, PepsiCo and other food and CGP giants sign landmark agreement on children's marketing rules.

NFL changes player-conduct policy and names a female CMO in PepsiCo veteran Dawn Hudson, as P&G cancels breast-cancer awareness tie-in with league and '47 brand stands by league.

MORE BRAND NEWS

Air France pilots vote to extend strike.

Applebee's sees social lift from "food porn."

AT&T and other brand publishers find their relationship with Facebook "complicated."

BlackBerry makeover starts to take shape and show results.

Chipotle's "brilliant" hiring process featured on LinkedIn.

Citi sees New York audit of troubled Citi Bike program.Continue reading...

branding together

U2unes Download: Apple and U2 Announce Next Big Gift to Music

Posted by Shirley Brady on September 18, 2014 03:24 PM

After exclusively launching U2’s new Songs of Innocence album to 500 million iTunes accounts this past week, Apple is delivering something else in response to customer demand. And true to Apple form, it’s an intuitive, easy-to-use and simple piece of technology—a delete button

A case study in how not to show customer appreciation, the unwanted gift of U2 music to all iTunes customers, whether they were fans of the Irish rockers or not, was hyped as the largest album release ever, and a "shrewd" marketing partnership (to the reported tune of $100 million) to celebrate the roots of the brand's longstanding tie-in with the band.

It turns out that the U2 album giveaway was a teaser for a bigger gift to come—and not only to music lovers but to musicians and the music industry as a whole. As TIME reveals in an exclusive cover story today, Apple is working with U2 on a bigger "secret project": a new digital music format designed to delight and excite customers to buy not only individual tracks but whole albums-as-experiences, and in so doing, "save the music industry."Continue reading...

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