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diversity watch

Ad Club of New York “I’mpart"s Diversity Training

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 5, 2012 03:06 PM

The Advertising Club of New York is committing $700,000 to “I’mpart,” an initiative to support training programs in high school, college and post-college to promote greater diversity in advertising and marketing, industries notorious for poor inclusion of blacks, Latinos and Asians. “Diversity in advertising has crept into the news again. The gorilla in the room continues to make noise as everyone tries to ignore it.” 

The 2010 census revealed that the U.S. now has more than 50 million Latinos, nearly 40 million African-Americans and almost 15 million Asians, and the paucity of representation and retention of these ethnicities in the C-level suites is alarming.Continue reading...

mobile brands

Will NFC, Wireless Charging and Exclusive Apps Boost Nokia Lumia Sales?

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 5, 2012 02:14 PM

Nokia once ruled the handset market but, in handset years, it’s been eons since those days and Nokia has fallen well behind Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android software. Last week, the Finnish company took another step backward, sliding behind Samsung.

That wasn’t good news for CEO Stephen Elop, who is coming up on his two-year anniversary in the post, a time frame that has found Nokia’s shares dropping down to sell at 70% less than the price it was at when Elop took over, the Wall Street Journal reports. Elop’s future with the company may hang on today’s announcement of the Nokia's Windows 8 Lumia Smartphone, which the company has been teasing for days in an attempt to steal even just a little of Apple's iPhone 5 thunder.

The new Lumia 820 and Lumia 920 range boasts "the best pictures and video ever seen on a smartphone," a touchscreen said to work with gloves and fingernails, wireless charging (also coming to Virgin Atlantic business lounges and the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf), NFC and Nokia Maps integration and “access to more than 150 playlists that span all major genres as part of an all-you-can-eat pro bono offering,” Engadget reports.

And, of course, consumers can create their own playlists, while US customers are getting a free streaming music service as an added sweetener. Along with all that, Bloomberg notes, consumers will also be able to browse an expanded app library incuding content from, yes, Bloomberg, plus Michelin, Angry Birds and other digital brands.Continue reading...

brand challenges

Virgin Trains Gets Derailed in Loss of Government Franchise

Posted by Barry Silverstein on August 22, 2012 01:45 PM

The famously flamboyant Richard Branson was less than his jovial self in a letter to colleagues last week announcing that Virgin Trains had lost the UK's West Coast rail franchise it had operated since 1997. 

"I can hardly express my disappointment and frustration over the Government decision that means we will not be able to run the West Coast rail service after December," wrote Branson. "We did everything possible to put together a strong, deliverable bid and I know it would have brought fantastic benefits for customers, staff and taxpayers. But in the end the decision rests with Government and we have to respect that, however much we disagree with the process behind it." Continue reading...

that's entertainment

Sir Richard Branson Ready to Return to His Roots as a Music Maven

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 18, 2012 11:20 AM

The record company that made Sir Richard Branson the man that he is today may be back on the block soon and the billionaire who parlayed Virgin Records into a global house of brands is saying that he wouldn’t mind putting the business he sold back into his own back pocket.

Universal Music Group is attempting to purchase EMI but it may be forced to ditch Virgin the process by regulators, according to the Guardian (UMG is reportedly ready to offer concessions to get the deal done). Branson, meanwhile, has spoken with French entrepreneur Patrick Zelnik, a former Virgin exec, about buying Virgin together. Branson let it be known that he is ready to join the bid for Virgin Records if it is sold by Universal Music Group as a condition of the major label's £1.2 billion acquisition of EMI Music.

”Richard Branson and Virgin have been assessing how to get back into recorded music business for many years," said a spokesman for Virgin Group, according to the Guardian. "The potential disposal of Virgin Records by Universal Music offers a wonderful opportunity to recreate a dynamic independent label in the market."Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Athleta, Hulu, Goldman Sachs and more

Posted by Dale Buss on July 17, 2012 09:01 AM

In the News

AT&T slashes price of Lumia smartphone.

Aereo online-TV service expands in U.S.

Bank of England chief denies New York Fed chief gave warning on rate-rigging.

Richard Branson considers bid for Virgin Records.

Coca-Cola beats estimates with international sales up 5%.

Famous Dave's expands beyond U.S..

GM likely to retain Opel brand despite brand's woes.

Gap eyes Lululemon's Athletica stores with its own Athleta store openings.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Burberry, DirecTV, Twitter and more

Posted by Dale Buss on July 12, 2012 09:01 AM

In the News

Adidas gets big boost in buzz from soccer's Euro 2012.

Aereo stays operating while TV networks sue, judge rules.

Airbus nabs $17 billion in orders at big air show.

Amazon weighs cutthroat market in smartphone decision.

Apple finds China jumping the gun on iPhone 5 orders.

Barclays former CEO could face US Congress.

Burberry finds sales momentum slowing.

Cartier sees slowdown in China.Continue reading...

ad watch

Virgin Mobile Australia Taps Brad Pitt's Younger Brother, Doug

Posted by Shirley Brady on July 4, 2012 04:55 PM

Virgin Mobile Australia's latest campaign features a celeb by association: "This is Doug Pitt, the second most famous Pitt in his family. Unlike his brother, Doug's not a super star, he's never been featured on the front page and never made big bucks from a celebrity endorsement. Virgin Mobile believe in a fair go for all, and want your help to make things a little fairer in the Pitt family. Visit fairgobro.com.au and show Doug some 'like'."

tech innovation

Google Reveals First Tablet, Streaming Media Player & $1,500 Project Glasses

Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 27, 2012 06:20 PM

The Google I/O three-day annual developer event in San Francisco today kicked off with a slew of product news.

Google is expanding its Nexus sub-brand of smart products from an Android phone (with Samsung, unveiled in October) to a streaming media player and the product that garnered the most buzz today: its first tablet, Nexus 7, a 7-inch device co-developed with Asus.

Nexus 7 is a bigger challenge to Amazon's 7-inch Kindle Fire than it is to Apple's iPad. The tablet costs $199 (8GB) or $249 (16GB) and is available to purchase now, with shipping starting in July.Continue reading...

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