Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 17, 2014 11:12 AM
Sweets companies are often the beneficiaries of consumers with the munchies, but one brand, Hershey's, isn't very happy with the marajuana industry at the moment.
The brand says it plans to file suit against a Colorado marijuana-edibles company, TinctureBelle LLC, for trademark infringement, alleging that the design of its product too much resembles its own products, Reuters reports. It also noted “there was a safety risk because consumers, especially children, might eat the pot products by mistake.”
TinctureBelle said that it had changed its packaging six months ago and no longer looks like Hershey's products. "We changed our entire label line approximately six months ago, long before these allegations surfaced," TinctureBelle owner Char Mayes said, according to the wire service. "Our new packaging looks nothing like Hershey's or anyone else's."Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on June 16, 2014 05:23 PM
Keurig is aiming to compound its competitive edge in the single-cup home brewing market even as competitors such as Nespresso and generic imitators such as TreeHouse attempt to hold it back.
Meanwhile, Nestle is facing greater challenges in advancing its Nespresso single-cup brand while at the same time trying to revive the iconic Nescafe franchise that has flagged lately because single-serve home machines, and the likes of Starbucks cafes, have made instant coffees such as Nescafe outdated.
Maker of the market-creating K-Cup, Keurig Green Mountain will press its competitive edge in the years ahead using at least five distinctive advantages, CEO Brian Kelley told an industry conference last week, according to Food Business News.
They include Keurig’s business model, incorporating the expertise of a retail-beverage company with that of a high-tech appliance company, and its advantages in innovating the machines and the pods. The “smart” design of its machines is another, Kelley said. The fifth advantage is Keurig’s strong strategic partnerships, including with Coca-Cola, which recently took a minority stake in Keurig Green Mountain as the two companies perfect a cold beverage delivery system for the home.Continue reading...
World Cup Daily
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 11, 2014 05:57 PM
With just hours until the World Cup kicks off in Brazil (with Jennifer Lopez, who finally confirmed she'll be performing the anthem in the opening ceremony), millions of fans and brands big and small are preparing to cheer on their favorite athletes and teams. And while much of the attention has been on the brand battle between Nike and adidas, there are plenty of local brands looking to get in on the action too.
Over in Australia, local bookmaker Sportsbet.com sent a 151-foot hot air balloon shaped like Rio's Christ the Redeemer statue into the skies about Melbourne. The balloon, which wore an Australian soccer jersey with the words #KeepTheFaith on the back, was likely a reference to the national team's tough World Cup opponents, but spirit-lifting or not, the stunt didn't go over too well with local religious leaders and business owners.
Meanwhile, British sportsbook Paddy Power caught its own share of flack after it posted an image showing the words "C'mon England PP" carved into a large swath of the Amazon rainforest. The company eventually had to clarify that the image was photoshopped and not real in order to avoid any further brand damage.
Another local sponsor getting into the spirit is UK plumber Dyno, which is launching a campaign to keep everyone's toilets flowing freely during the World Cup. The brand will have "Rush to Flush" squads on-hand to handle emergency call-outs in hopes to avoid the same fate as four years ago, when there was a “25 percent increase in blocked toilets across the UK during the England vs France game.”Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Nate Bartell on June 6, 2014 06:33 PM
What seemed like smart marketing turned into a headache for Chobani as their #HowMatters campaign has transformed from a seemingly good-hearted platform to a legal and ethical mess.
The campaign, which debuted during this year's Super Bowl and ran througout the Winter Olympics and The Oscars, has met criticism from Dov Seidman, the CEO of business consultancy LRN, who claims that the catchphrase was stolen from the founding principle featured on his company’s website. Seidman has also written a book entitled “How: Why How We Do Anything Means Everything,” from which he believes Chobani extrapolated their controversial marketing campaign title.
Suing for damages based on trademark infringement, Seidman's argument hinges on a small, social detail: a tweet that Chobani sent Seidman back in January, thanking him for inspiring the "how" movement, and asking for his help in supporting their cause.Continue reading...
Posted by Jeremy Shapero on June 5, 2014 04:43 PM
Chobani, in just six short years, established and rose to the top of the Greek yogurt category in North America. One of the strengths of the brand is its compelling and consistent tone of voice. Josh Dean, VP of brand communications, spoke about the brand’s voice at the recent Social Media Forum in New York. Where much of the discussion on brand voice revolves around what is being said and how it is being said, Dean’s talk raised an equally important but often overlooked factor to establishing brand voice—knowing when to speak.
To illustrate the importance of choosing authentic, on-brand moments to speak, Dean related an anecdote from his experience. As an official sponsor of the US Olympic team, Chobani prepared a shipment of yogurt to be delivered to the athletes in Sochi during the Winter Olympics this past February. The Russian government blocked the shipment as an outgrowth of years of importation disputes with the US over dairy products.
The ban caught fire in the media, both traditional and social, with everyone from Senator Charles Schumer to comedian Stephen Colbert weighing in on the controversy. Across social media, Chobani’s dedicated fans were particularly vocal, and a #FreeChobani hashtag took hold on Twitter. The coverage and conversation ultimately resulted in over 380 million overall impressions. However, one voice was notably missing from the conversation—Chobani.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 29, 2014 06:17 PM
A stream of new quarterly reports from luxury-goods icons including Tiffany & Co., Nordstrom, Michael Kors and Estee Lauder have topped expectations and have demonstrated the persistence of a separation between how the rich and the non-rich feel and spend.
“Tiffany enjoyed a strong start to 2014,” CEO Michael Kowalski said about a 50 percent jump in first-quarter earnings and 15 percent sales growth for the jeweler, which raised its profit outlook for the rest of the year as well. It bucked the wintry weather to post a strong Valentine’s Day and enjoyed a strong trade with tourists in New York.
But perhaps what is most intriguing about Tiffany's sustained success is the proliferation of the Tiffany brand beyond luxury goods. For one, the brand has continued to increase its investment in "fashion jewelry"—items that carry its glinting brand but without as much expensive metals and precious jewels that characterize its traditional “fine jewelry.” The brand's Atlas collection was its fastest-growing of its new and expanded collections, a remarkable difference from what the brand was reporting last year, according to Quartz.
This is part of Tiffany’s overall strategy to experiment with lower-end products as well as take care of business on the high end—a risk that, perhaps, other luxury brands such as Burberry and Louis Vuitton wouldn’t take for fear of diluting brand exclusivity. But Tiffany clearly has found success so far with this approach, satisfying traditional luxury customers and providing a gateway to the brand for the middle class consumers and tourists.Continue reading...
see you in court
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 28, 2014 12:14 PM
The remaining two members of the Beastie Boys, the hip-hop icons of "Fight for your right" fame, are indeed doing just that this week in a Manhattan court for a trademark suit against Monster Energy Drinks.
Before the group's third member, Adam "MCA" Yauch passed way just over two years ago, Yauch made it his will that the band's music or its likeness not be used in any form of advertising. But just a few days after Yauch's passing, Monster uploaded a video of excerpts of its recent snowboarding event set to the beat of five Beastie Boys tracks. The video ended with the words "RIP MCA" in Monster's brand typeface, according to Billboard.
While Monster admits it made a mistake, the beverage brand is balking at paying out the reported $2 million settlement that the band and Yauch's estate are asking for in return for "damages for the song licenses and another $1 million for the 'implied endorsement.'"Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 15, 2014 02:27 PM
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced the first “sunrise” phase of the roll-out of the .nyc domain name prior to a full-scale public launch in October 2014.
Part of a new class of generic top-level domains (gTLDs — although in this case they're also called geoTLDs) from the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the Big Apple is the first city in the U.S. with a top-level domain catering to local businesses, organizations and residents.
“The launch of the .nyc domain is one of the most anticipated arrivals for the city and the Internet at large,” stated Hizzoner. “There is no shortage of New Yorkers ready to claim their exclusive .nyc identities online, and this is their chance to reserve their piece of this city’s valuable digital real estate.”
Jessie Pressman, CEO of tech education startup Bite Size Learning, was one of those New Yorkers who seized the opportunity.
“Acquiring a .nyc domain is a chance to align Bite Size Learning's brand with NYC,” Pressman, recently featured in Crain's New York, told brandchannel. “As an emerging start-up the .nyc domain will lend credibility to our site while at the same time promoting our belief in supporting local business.”Continue reading...