Local and international advertisers pledged to spend almost $1.4 billion to run commercials on China's top TV network next year, indicating continued confidence in the spending habits of Chinese consumers, despite global economic woes.
Bringing Ms. Minaj on board to pinch-hit for Pepsi is clearly a strategic move, and a reaction to the drop that Pepsi took this year in the marketplace. The results of 2012’s Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Index reveal that both Pepsi and Diet Pepsi fell flat this year, trailing Coke and Diet Coke for the first time in years. Loyalty is, alas, not a forever thing if you don’t know how best to engage your audience.
In an era when entire companies and long-time brands are disappearing, why do Americans trust certain brands and not others? What is trust?
Coca-Cola is looking at restructuring and expanding its in-house content creation team as it experiments with longform branded content. The soft drink giant’s VP of global advertising strategy and creative excellence Jonathan Mildenhall told C21 recent campaigns around the Olympics and Coke Zero, which both included longform video, had prompted him to look at how it manages this type of content from its Atlanta headquarters.
Some years ago, I hosted a blind tasting beer party where everyone voted for their favorite and least favorite beers from a collection of microbrews and mainstream brands. Although there was no clear winner, there was definitely an outright loser. I was thinking about that party when I read about Coke’s decision to kill its White Coke can before the scheduled end of its holiday season run. This was primarily a story about customer confusion -- there was not enough difference between the White Coke can and the Diet Coke can and people were getting confused and buying the wrong one. But there was a side-story that some people thought that the Coke from the white can did not taste the same/as good as the Coke from the red can. Ridiculous, you might say. Not that surprising, I thought, based on my own experience from that beer-tasting party.
When Lee Applbaum arrived at Ft. Worth in late 2008, just as the recession was taking hold, to take the helm as Chief Marketing Officer of Radio Shack, it didn’t take long to discover that the brand was stale. “We were a store for batteries and parts”, Lee told me, “which means that we were completely commoditized“. The company had reams of research, and Applbaum and his team started going through it, before realizing that it was pretty useless. “We literally set it on fire”, he added with a chuckle. Instead, they set up on a series of focus groups, and an interesting thing happened as they started looking for a way to convey “news”, and force people to reconsider their view of Radio Shack.
First, Diet Coke beats Pepsi. Now, Coors Light is close to dethroning Budweiser as the nation's best-selling brew behind Bud Light.
It is easy to complain about the trivial nature of the majority of social media content, but it is rapidly becoming a fact of life that the socially connected among us can't help sharing our lives as they happen with our virtual networks. One place where this sharing behaviour becomes particularly accelerated is at live events. People tweet more often, take more photos and generally become more social both online and off.
Coca-Cola Co. drinks made from kale -- a nutritious but not very tasty leafy green vegetable -- could soon turn up on store shelves. Coca-Cola West, the Atlanta-based beverage giant's largest bottler in Japan, said this week it will spend $425.6 million to buy Q'Sai Co., a major Japanese health-food producer whose main product is a green juice called "aojiru" made of kale. Q'sai, a Fukuoka-based company that also produces supplements, soap and cream made of collagen, was put up for sale earlier this year by owners Daiwa Corporate Investment. Kale juice made by Coke probably won't go on sale in the U.S. any time soon, but Japan has long served as a source of inspiration and innovation for Coca-Cola in areas such as health drinks, a hot trend here.
On Tuesday, G.M. sent a memo to Chevrolet employees at its Detroit headquarters, promoting the importance of “consistency” for the brand, which was the nation’s best-selling line of cars and trucks for more than half a century after World War II. And one way to present a consistent brand message, the memo suggested, is to stop saying “Chevy,” though the word is one of the world’s best-known, longest-lived product nicknames.
Expect executives at Dr Pepper Snapple Group to be bubbly today when touting the benefits of a $700 million-plus deal with rival Coke even though it has less fizz than some investors were expecting. The Plano-based maker of Dr Pepper, 7Up and Motts juices, among other products, said Monday it will reap a $715 million payday for allowing the Coca-Cola Co. to distribute some of Dr Pepper's soft drinks in the U.S. and Canada.
Coke and Pepsi are very active in social media, and I think their hard work is helping to build up a bank of trust with their audiences. As has been widely reported, Pepsi decided not to use its Super Bowl ad budget to try to create a set of iconic commercials. Instead, it used it to launch its "Refresh Everything" campaign in which it asked its "fans" to come up with ideas to "refresh the world" in the categories of health, the planet, art and culture, food and shelter, neighborhoods, and education. Fans submit descriptions of their ideas. Pepsi screens and posts them on the website. Visitors vote on them. Then, after considering the votes, Pepsi selects which ones to fund. Grants ranging from $5,000 to $250,000, and Pepsi plans to spend a total of $15.6 million on the year-long program, which ends next January.
Here on Branding Strategy Insider, Jack Trout makes a compelling argument for why not to consider licensing as a method of brand extension. Furthermore, he backs it up with multiple examples of established brands with flawed licensing programs that serve to prove his hypothesis. After reading about Pratt & Whitney and Pierre Cardin, what CEO in their right mind would choose to risk the company's crown jewels to a group of third party manufacturers which don’t have a clue about how to build a brand, let alone manage one? With so much at stake, only those CEOs that are either reckless or desperate would consider licensing. Right?
As dangerous as it may be to generalize, it is probably safe to say that few folks think of Marcel Proust as they watch the Super Bowl. But for the advertising bowl that took place inside Super Bowl XLIV on Sunday, it was one long remembrance of things past — with candy bars, mobile phones and beer bottles standing in for madeleines. Nostalgia is a critical component of the pitches from sponsors on Super Bowl Sunday. After all, the best way to appeal to a mass audience of 100 million or so Americans is usually to fill spots with paeans to the past along with catchy music, stars, special effects, talking babies and endearing animals.
If you were on Twitter last night during the Super Bowl, you probably had a blast with the rest of us participating in all the chatter around the game, and the commercials. Many of us were using the #brandbowl hashtag to critique the ads in real-time, in fact I was seeing 100 new tweets coming in every couple of minutes. For reference, that's about FOUR times the volume of a busy #blogchat.
Super Bowl 2010 is more than a football game–it’s a face-off between companies striving to have the most-talked about commercials. And the super spectacle will also be rocked by music from the Who, Carrie Underwood and Queen Latifah. Speakeasy will be live-blogging the cultural and commercial aspects of the Super Bowl. Feel free to give your take on the ads and the music in the comments section. You can check out the action on the field here.
Decades ago, consumers were invited to “be sociable, have a Pepsi.” Now the brand wants to invite consumers to help Pepsi support social causes — and will use social media like Facebook and Twitter to help spread a message. Pepsi-Cola is formally introducing on Monday an ambitious campaign named the Pepsi Refresh Project, aimed at doing well by doing good. The brand is dedicating at least $20 million through the end of the year for donations to local organizations and causes proposed by the public in realms like health, arts and culture, the environment and education.
An easy way to get started on the topic of Brand Licensing is to break the subject into its two component parts – brand and licensing. Let's start with the latter part first. What is licensing? Licensing means nothing more than the renting or leasing of an intangible asset. An example of intangible assets includes a song (Somewhere Over The Rainbow), a character (Donald Duck), a name (Michael Jordan) or a brand (The Ritz-Carlton). An arrangement to license a brand requires a licensing agreement. A licensing agreement authorizes a company which markets a product or service (a licensee) to lease or rent a brand from a brand owner who operates a licensing program (a licensor). Before we move any further, let's discuss what we mean when we use the term brand.
Within a week of going live on YouTube, Coca-Cola's new "Happiness Machine" video -- the brand's first global video produced exclusively for viral distribution, with no use in TV ads -- has already racked up more than 645,000 views. Coke set up a special vending machine on a real college campus and rolled footage of students' surprised and delighted reactions as the machine proceeded to dispense everything from free bottles of Coke to flowers, a whole pizza, a six-foot sub and balloon animals.
Have you noticed that most conversations about branding inevitably include references to Harley-Davidson and Apple? Sprinkle in mentions of Coke, Facebook, and Zappos, and you get the context of every agency pitch for more spending on brand engagement, loyalty, or whatever else these examples might suggest. I suggest you ban these references from your next conversation. Forget about them altogether.
Innovation is the lifeblood of consumer product companies. It has pushed design to higher levels and resulted in making life better, more convenient, safer; it continually adds value to products. Without it, brands max out the sales potential of existing products. They risk becoming stale and passé over time. Unless innovative products are constantly in the pipeline, brands run the risk of being upstaged by competitors, as well. However, there are times when the push for constant innovation can lead consumer product companies astray. Some well-planned, well-executed ideas have been a bust in spite of, or rather because of the fact they represented some kind of innovation.
Meet the man with a nearly uncontainable design challenge: making Coke even bigger (and staying ahead of Pepsi).
In the last couple of weeks, a JPG has been making the internet rounds and, in the process, has gathered more than 6,500 Diggs (not that that is any measure of successful success, but still…) and has been mentioned in dozens of design and culture blogs, including many which I frequent and respect. The problem is that the JPG is wrong and disingenuous. It comparatively illustrates the evolution of the Pepsi and Coca-Cola logos from their beginnings in the late nineteenth century to their current state at the end of the 2000s. The comparison chart mocks the ever-changing personality of the Pepsi logo in contrast to Coca-Cola’s stoic script logo, unaffected by the effects of time.
A wise old direct marketer once told me, “Never carry a product with colors and sizes.” The root of this advice, of course, is the complexity and inventory that comes with those product characteristics. A single product can morph into dozens of individual SKUs. Soft drink makers have a little of the same problem. Introduce a product, and some people will want a diet version of it. Some consumers may want it with caffeine, others without. Some prefer cans, other various sizes of bottles.
Diet Coke with a hint of green tea--that’s what's on the menu in Japan this summer. The new flavor of Coke Plus, as Diet Coke is known in Japan, hit shelves last month, aimed at health-conscious women in their twenties.
For most of us, the shape of a 2-liter bottle is something we take for granted. For Hendrik Steckhan, head of carbonated soft-drink brands for Coca-Cola North America, the shape is a problem. Coca-Cola should not be in the same 2-liter bottle as every other brand, he said. “When you think about this, it just doesn’t make sense,” Steckhan said. Faced with a nagging decline in North American sales, Atlanta-based Coke and its bottlers are turning to packaging as a key way to set their products apart and try to generate fresh appeal.
Coca-Cola is a carbonated soft drink sold in stores, restaurants and vending machines in more than 200 countries. You can safely say it is one of the most recognized and adored brands in the world. It is produced by The Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta, Georgia, and is often referred to simply as Coke. Enjoy these Coke-inspired innovations, including fan-based Facebook pages, Coke experiments, couture Coke bottles, and fried Coke.
McDonald's Corp. said it has stopped test sales of bottled PepsiCo Inc. soft-drink products in its restaurants. McDonald's said the decision was made at the end of the summer last year. The fast-food chain has tested a wide variety of national and regional beverages in select U.S. restaurants said over the last two years.
end .primary-media end .related-media In an apparent homage to the new President, PepsiCo has plastered the sides of buses and bus stops in the nation's capital with slogans like "Yes You Can," "Optimismmmm" and "Hope." That said, the marketing campaign, which includes TV and print ads as well, does raise a question: Is Pepsi actually the choice of the Obama Administration?
The name Classic is coming off of the iconic Coke brand name, finally. The Classic naming only appears in North America, a hangover from the New Coke debacle of April 23, 1985, "a day that will live in marketing infamy."
Coca-Cola, which has a history of playing catch up in burgeoning beverage categories, is getting into the unsweetened, flavored water category early with the launch of Dasani Essence.
In Atlanta, in 1924, the Coca-Cola sales and marketing team had a problem. Each summer, US consumers set off for the beach, or to watch a baseball game with a bottle of Coke in hand. But during the winter, sales of Coke were sluggish. The team was desperate to increase the brand's sales and prevent it becoming seen as a seasonal product. Somehow they needed to make Coke a winter drink.
Coca-Cola Co. is expected to launch a drink in the U.S. this week containing a natural, calorie-free sweetener, intensifying a race with PepsiCo Inc. to dominate a new generation of noncarbonated beverages. Coke is pushing ahead even though the Food and Drug Administration as of Sunday hadn't issued a formal blessing of the ingredient.
We were pleasantly surprised by a new holiday commercial from Wal-Mart and Coca-Cola. The ad, currently playing in movie theaters and online, features a young, geeky guy wandering through his own holiday party with a reusable Wal-Mart tote bag, handing out bottles of Coke while singing a little ditty about his guests.