brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 30, 2011 03:56 PM
There is still plenty of debate over just what is OK to do with an American flag and what’s not. Cutting it when it’s a cake? Putting it in doormat or napkin form where it will get soiled? And, of course, the big whopper of American-flag questions: is it cool to burn the thing?
While those debates may rage for eternity in America’s dorm rooms and statehouses, it is likely becoming extremely clear to the folks at German shoe and sportswear company Puma that one country that doesn’t like to have its flag put anywhere else than on a flagpole is the United Arab Emirates.
CNN reports that Puma has put out a new limited-edition shoe that features the UAE flag in honor of the nation’s 40th birthday on Dec. 2 and citizens are not loving the concept.
“Puma should have borne in mind the cultural sensitivities of the people of the UAE,” Abdullah K, an Emirati professional, told CNN’s Inside the Middle East blog. “The flag is a very sacred symbol for the UAE. It cannot be trivialized, especially not as footwear.”Continue reading...
now hear this
Posted by Abe Sauer on November 27, 2011 09:28 PM
On Black Friday, several stores of outdoor sports outfitter Cabela's gave away guns. And have you heard the one about the gun club offering photos with Santa and ammo?
Guns, always popular in the US, have become even more so in a slumping, anxious economy. No wonder, as a new report exposes, a New York City-based capital management form has been buying up as many gun brands as it can get its hands on.
The gun-loving conglomerate, Freedom Group, now sells more than 1.2 million guns a year, notching $40 billion in yearly revenue. (That's more than Coca-Cola, by the way.)
Benefitting from the rise in gun sales are the gun accessories industry. But one such brand faces a huge uphill marketing challenge, burdened with severely tight regulations, even for the gun industry. The brand's answer? An education campaign called "Silencers are Legal."Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on November 23, 2011 12:19 PM
Fiat, which just ousted its North America head in the wake of disappointing sales of the 500 in the U.S., has come under fire for the celebrity pitching the 500 — Jennifer Lopez. As The Smoking Gun website broke this week, the "My World" spot (released in October) claims to feature "Jenny from the Block" tooling around her old neighborhood in the Bronx. The only problem: the whole thing was faked, with a body double used for the New York shoot while JLo shot her sequence in Los Angeles. Making matters worse, the New York lookalike's 500 cabrio broke down during filming.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 21, 2011 05:02 PM
An animal-rights group sent some of its members undercover and what they found has resulted in McDonald’s ditching an egg supplier in Minnesota, according to the Associated Press.
What they found, as you might imagine, were some highly unpleasant acts taking place — the burning of beaks off of living chicks, the suffocation of male chickens, the overstuffing of chickens into small spaces, dead chickens being left to rot in the henhouse — and they captured every unpleasant detail on video (which you can watch here, if you're up for it) for all to see.
In the spring, the supplier in question, Sparboe Farms, unknowingly hired a few members of Mercy for Animals, who then secretly filmed outrageous acts taking place at Sparboe’s facilities in Iowa, Minnesota and Colorado, the AP notes. Sparboe was a subcontractor, so McDonald’s did not directly contract with Sparboe. The connection came through its relationship with Cargill Inc., which suspended Sparboe, the AP reports.
McDonald’s also made it clear that it had no idea that any such things were going on. "The behavior on tape is disturbing and completely unacceptable. McDonald's wants to assure our customers that we demand humane treatment of animals by our suppliers," said Bob Langert, McDonald's vice president for sustainability in a company statement, according to the AP.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 21, 2011 05:01 PM
She hired Jennifer Lopez, hit New York Fashion Week with Gucci in tow, put JLo in a Gucci-wrapped Fiat car, and even put a Fiat on stage with JLo in what's been called the most "brazen" product placement in some time. Fiat North America head Laura Soave also oversaw launch marketing for the 2012 Fiat 500 that channeled Elvis Presley, brought drive-in movies, bocce and espresso to Times Square and other cities — but none of it sold the new 500 in the U.S. market the way that Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne had hoped.
So on Monday Marchionne ousted Soave and named a new head of the Fiat brand for North America: Timothy Kuniskis, who was director of marketing for Chrysler and Fiat brands and now replaces Soave as head of Fiat North America. Soave, meanwhile, is leaving the company "other interests," the company stated in that favorite of corporate euphemisms.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 9, 2010 01:00 PM
Estimates put the American Muslim population at six to eight million – a small but relatively unmined marketing ‘Mecca.’ The challenge of targeting this eclectic group remains somewhat daunting, although it’s worth about $200 billion.
Many Muslims are recent immigrants of Middle Eastern descent; but just as many are U.S. natives. Many are African-Americans. Some are traditionally religious and others secular. Research indicates they are less influenced by price and value, more aware of brand names, and more gender-specific.
National brands including Best Buy, Ann Taylor, ESPN, Verizon and U.S. Healthcare are showing up on Muslim-oriented websites such as hijabtrendz.com and chillyoislamyou.com, while Hallmark sells Eid cards for the end of Ramadan.Continue reading...