Web bots, the “internet of things”, machine learning and other converging technological advancements offer an early glimpse of our artificial intelligence future. And marketers need to start paying attention.
Customer experience goes to the heart of everything you do--how you conduct your business, the way your people behave when they interact with customers and each other, the value you provide. You literally can't afford to ignore it, because your customers take it personally each and every time they touch your products, your services, and your support.
In the late 1990s the dot-com boom made every organization look at the potential for online presence and examine its business model. But the pace has been heating up with emerging social (Facebook), mobile (smart phones and iPads), "cloud," and "big data" technologies that are creating new ways to compete, and, along with them, new ways of working.
In an era when entire companies and long-time brands are disappearing, why do Americans trust certain brands and not others? What is trust?
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.
“Google it.” “Did you Xerox the report?” “Please FedEx it.” Once upon a time, using a brand name as a verb was verboten. It was behavior that would drive a trademark lawyer crazy. But more and more marketers are deciding that the grand slam of branding is to become part of the language – in effect, having your trademark substitute in everyday usage for the type of action or service that your mark identifies. Could there be, they argue, any clearer expression of a brand’s leadership?
FedEx is launching a digital web experience as part of its global advertising campaign focused on business trends and insights. The brand's new FedEx Delivers to a Changing World microsite invites users to interact with content from The Economist Intelligence Unit, the research arm of The Economist, on topics including air travel, urban populations, entrepreneurs and success, the coffee effect, household appliances, education, recycled paper, and more.
In its study titled, "Beyond Trust: Engaging Consumers in the Post-Recession World," Millward Brown used a new metric dubbed "TrustR" to determine the top-performing brands. It's calculated by looking at consumer responses to the questions "how trustworthy is this brand?" and "would you recommend this brand?"
With the economy tight and ad dollars tighter, the tactic of "going negative" against competitor brands has become more popular. The trend is expected to continue through 2010. One of the more effective current examples is Fedex and its "Brown Bailout" campaign. Brownbailout.com (“brown” referring to how UPS has branded itself) stands in opposition to the government "bailout" of the United Parcel Service (UPS).
The U.S. economy has reached a "turning point," FedEx Corp.'s chief executive said, as the company reported a bump in holiday shipping. The optimism was tempered somewhat as the package-delivery giant issued a subdued outlook for the current quarter. The Memphis, Tenn., company on Monday shipped 14.1 million packages, considered the peak day for mailing holiday goods. The figure was a million higher than expected and up 17% from the busiest day last year.
FedEx has begun a global ad campaign touting its reliability and expertise in helping consumers navigate a fast-changing economic landscape, a move that comes as the package shipping industry faces weaker sales brought on by the recession. FedEx and its competitor -- UPS, the world's largest package shipper -- have battled recent earnings slumps as tight-fisted consumers and businesses cut back on spending. The former reported an earnings drop of 53 percent for its most recent quarter, while UPS saw a 43 percent quarterly decrease.
Graphic designers (UnderConsideration LLC), authors, and Internet instigators Armin Vit and Bryony Gomez-Palacio recently closed their influential design blog Speak Up and left New York to set up shop in Austin, Texas. Besides the fact that their mortgage now nets them double the square-footage, not much has changed for the husband-and-wife team: They still run several blogs, including the popular branding blog Brand New, work for clients, and write books, including their newest, Graphic Design Referenced, published by Rockport. The highly-visual guide highlights the industry's technical terms, historical moments, and influential practitioners with over 2,000 projects, so we asked Vit and Gomez-Palacio to dig out the 12 juiciest stories about our favorite brands for some salacious summer design reading. Enjoy!
FedEx has been something of an advertising bellwether. So when the company announced that after 18 years it would forgo advertising during the last Super Bowl, because it could not justify the expense during the downturn, the news resonated. The company is certain to be watched closely Monday, then, as it unveils its first Web-video advertising campaign, five three-minute films that feature the actor Fred Willard.
The word bailout has gone from descriptive to derogatory. In a multimillion-dollar marketing campaign introduced Tuesday, FedEx objected to legislation that would make it easier to unionize the company by accusing its rival, United Parcel Service, of taking a government bailout.
"Do you Yahoo?" "Did you Xerox the report?" "Did you FedEx it?" "Did you see the messenger Rollerblading?" It's the branding of language. Once upon a time, using a brand name as a verb was anathema. It was behavior that would drive a trademark lawyer crazy. But more and more marketers are deciding that the grand slam of branding is to become part of the language - in effect, having your trademark substitute in everyday usage for the type of action or service that your mark identifies. Could there be, they argue, any clearer expression of a leadership position?
FedEx announced today that it will not run a Super Bowl ad for the first time in 12 years. Director of advertising Steve Pacheco posted a statement on the company Web site citing “unprecedented economic waters” as the reason FedEx is opting not to buy a spot.