Volkswagen's brand is worth a lot less than it thinks

VW Group is the best managed automotive portfolio in the world. Porsche, Audi, Lamborghini, Bentley and VW all have a distinct market they serve and dominate. So what happens to all that equity you’ve built when one of your brands tells the world it’s hip and progressive, but turns out to have been deliberately cheating on its emissions? Read how VW just wiped out billions of dollars of its intangible assets.

  • September 22, 2015

Brands Are Using Social Media More Than Ever, And Users Are Ignoring Them More Than Ever

Today, there are more brands on social media than ever before. And though they’re meant to blend in organically with a user’s social feed, engagement with these brands and their sponsored posts is going down fast. Brands are doing more work and getting less attention for it. It’s anticipated that users will become increasingly desensitized to these sponsored posts, just like they did with banner ads, so savvy companies are rushing to adopt emerging platforms. But is it enough? Increased followings, but decreasing engagement...

McWhopper: A Modest Proposal (INTERACTIVE)

In honor of Peace Day, September 21st, Burger King is inviting McDonald's to team up to create the McWhopper — a burger built for world peace. If they say yes, Burger King will mark this ‘burger wars” ceasefire with a one day pop-up McWhopper shop in Atlanta on Peace Day, halfway between the restaurant chains’ two headquarters. It’s a fun bit of corporate activation and a bold move to raise global awareness—for the Burger King brand, but more importantly for the virtues of peace, non-violence and global unity that Peace Day represents. “Mr. McDonald, tear down this wall!”

As SoulCycle Preps For IPO, Stats Show Boutique Fitness Isn't Just A Fad

New data shows that the small-box studio format employed by brands like SoulCycle is outpacing the old-fashioned gym model. The 38-strong studio chain is profitable, having made $25 million on $112 million in revenue last year, and its regulars tend to evangelize the brand heavily on social media. Research also suggests that once a SoulCycle rider is on the hook, they return more often and spend far more than their counterparts at regular gyms. It just goes to show the potential of an aspirational product with an empowering, new-age brand. SoulCycle’s formula is working

CrossFit’s extremely lucrative business plan is also deceptively simple

CrossFit’s meteoric rise to fitness dominance was no accident. Through a combination of clever mobile marketing, video production and social amplification, the fitness brand has tripled its number of gyms around the world over the last three years. But while social media may be the lifeblood of the CrossFit enterprise, its rabid participants are the beating heart of creator Greg Glassman’s business plan. Glassman controls the brand’s ideas and image, while its adherents spread its message. How CrossFit took over the world

Disney's Powerful Marketing Force: Social Media Moms

One of the best ways to reach moms is through other moms. To influence family travel and entertainment planning, Disney has cultivated a carefully vetted group of 1,300 moms to evangelize the Disney brand online. In exchange for perks like deals for their family at Disneyland, these moms move social media mountains by creating content, generating buzz and sharing their families’ experiences with Disney. These moms even made #DisneySMMC (Disney Social Media Moms Celebration) a trending hashtag on Twitter. Who says social media is a millennial’s game? How Disney is tapping the influence of moms on social

Customers Are Paying to Trade Places With the Barista

In the hyper-competitive coffee segment, smaller chains are realizing the value of experiential marketing after offering a series of educational courses on brewing, crafting and tasting coffee. The classes give the brands the chance to sell proprietary blends and other products, but also the opportunity to build relationships and create ambassadors who spread the word through word-of-mouth marketing to friends and family: "Third-wave coffee is about providing the best coffee available to a discerning clientele. Educating customers on coffee and quality creates a greater market of discriminating drinkers," said Drew Pond of Stone Creek. See how coffee classes are creating customer loyalty

How SoulCycle's instructors spin a smart social strategy

SoulCycle is quickly becoming one of the hottest fitness brands in the U.S., but it’s not just loyal customers who are responsible for building the brand – SoulCycle instructors double as brand managers online, cultivating rabid social media followings of fans who think of them as life coaches and role models. The official SoulCycle site features instructor profiles complete with their personal social feed and recent music they’ve listened to: “The brand is set up so you know it’s a class, but it feels like a personal trainer,” said one SoulCycle fanatic. “There’s a personal relationship, they’re friendly, they’re your friends.” Learn more about SoulCycle's social strategy at Digiday

‘Raiders!’ Stars Explain How To Turn Your Fan Obsession Into Art

A group of friends spent seven summers making a shot-by-shot remake of ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’… and finished it 30 years later. Complete with low-budget props, cheesy action and actors that age from scene to scene, it’s a charming fan tribute and a testament to what advocates are willing to do if they care about your product or brand. What the stars learned about obsession and art

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