Monthly Archives: December 2009

Cadillac’s Identity Crisis: When Branding Won’t Die

No one can dispute the power of the Cadillac brand. Its identity is so strong that it lingers in our cultural consciousness — and that’s precisely the problem.

First, Cadillac couldn’t shake the decades-old association with drivers “between the age of 80 and deceased,” as former Chrysler CEO Lee Iacocca said. Then a half a dozen years ago, the brand acquired new status among the hip-hop crowd, which enthroned the $60,000 Cadillac Escalade as the ride of choice.

It’s not that General Motors hasn’t been trying to change Cadillac’s image and broaden the cars’ appeal. The embattled company spent $81 million in the first half of 2009 on advertising, much of that going to an ad campaign featuring the sleek and sophisticated-looking CTS sport wagon. In a bid for younger audiences, Grey’s Anatomy star Kate Walsh sits behind the wheel and asks, “When you turn your car on, does it return the favor?”

Read full article by Melanie Warner


Make the Customer, Not the Car, the Star

We used to say “the car is the star.” Well, that time has passed. The customers are the stars, and it’s the car that helps them express themselves, their values, their needs, and their desire to look good. The consumers that you want to be your brand disciples need to be shocked, surprised, and delighted into changing their minds. When they do, they’ll talk in person, online, via mobile, and more, and spread the word for you like a Twitter wildfire.

Tactically, this means Cadillac needs more efforts that are participatory and interactive, not one-way push messaging. It’s more digital marketing, more social marketing, and more mobile communications to create better experiences that engage with the consumer. You need to talk with the customer daily and be transparent, which is something car companies have never been good at. Instead of old-school media, such as TV ads using worn-out slogans, Cadillac should try something as simple as giving 10 influencers an XLR (a high-performance convertible) and an iPhone, something that allows the customer to talk and be excited about the product.

The other big thing that’s hurt Cadillac is that GM has been over-marketing GM. At a minimum, get GM’s CEO off the air. Consumers want a Caddy, not a GM.

Black Friday/Cyber Monday…Julie Roehm’s favorite apps for getting the best deal!

Instead of commenting on the retail sectors ups and downs for this past weekend (looks like shopping was up but basket size was down), I thought I would write about my favorite apps for the holiday shopping season.
I spent about two hours online last night searching for gifts for the kids on my Christmas list and did manage to find some great deals.  But now that the deals have expired and I still have some shopping to do, I am tapping, literally, into some retail apps to help me find the best deals.
*RedLaser*:  I like this one a lot.  I was at Target this morning and scanned a toy with my iPhone using the red laser app.  It immediately told me where else nearby I could find that product and at what prices. This was very cool EXCEPT, given that I still live in Bentonville, Arkansas, I did not get a lot of great choices for places nearby selling it cheaper.  I guess I should feel good that I am getting it at the best price.  I REALLY loved that it also showed me where online I could find it cheaper as well and when I clicked on the price it re-directed me right to that site so I could buy on the spot.  VERY cool.  This is my favorite shopping app so far.
*Yowza!:* This is nice if you are about to head out and want to see what retailers near you are hosting deals.  For someone like me who is usually rushing around, it was not the same as being able to check prices while I am staring at the product but it would persuade me to go to places that I had not planned to go in the first place.
*Coupon Sherpa*:  This one is similar to Yowza except that it lists more retailers and they are listed alphabetically.  You can also track by category. They have some decent ones listed.  In my rural area out here in the stick, I was hoping for a Starbucks coupon but was pleasantly surprised to find coupons for AMC theaters, Borders, Gap, Target and even some restaurants.  Again, it might be something I check when I am at the store but it is also a nice tool for planning your shopping trip.
*Save Benjis+*:  This has the scan feature that Red Laser has but it does not list as many options for other places and prices as Red Laser offers.
It is a bit more limiting but it was free when I downloaded it.
*Amazon*: Always handy to compare prices.  They just do a good job overall of getting the mobile and online experience.
*Black Friday*:  This app is a good idea generator app.  It lists products with consumer review ratings and then links to buy.  It is ok but you have to scroll through all the items to see if they have what you want…there is no search element.
That is all for now.  Happy shopping!

Instead of commenting on the retail sectors ups and downs for this past weekend (looks like shopping was up but basket size was down), I thought I would write about my favorite apps for the holiday shopping season.

I spent about two hours online last night searching for gifts for the kids on my Christmas list and did manage to find some great deals.  But now that the deals have expired and I still have some shopping to do, I am tapping, literally, into some retail apps to help me find the best deals.

*RedLaser*:  I like this one a lot.  I was at Target this morning and scanned a toy with my iPhone using the red laser app.  It immediately told me where else nearby I could find that product and at what prices. This was very cool EXCEPT, given that I still live in Bentonville, Arkansas, I did not get a lot of great choices for places nearby selling it cheaper.  I guess I should feel good that I am getting it at the best price.  I REALLY loved that it also showed me where online I could find it cheaper as well and when I clicked on the price it re-directed me right to that site so I could buy on the spot.  VERY cool.  This is my favorite shopping app so far.

*Yowza!*: This is nice if you are about to head out and want to see what retailers near you are hosting deals.  For someone like me who is usually rushing around, it was not the same as being able to check prices while I am staring at the product but it would persuade me to go to places that I had not planned to go in the first place.

*Coupon Sherpa*:  This one is similar to Yowza except that it lists more retailers and they are listed alphabetically.  You can also track by category. They have some decent ones listed.  In my rural area out here in the stick, I was hoping for a Starbucks coupon but was pleasantly surprised to find coupons for AMC theaters, Borders, Gap, Target and even some restaurants.  Again, it might be something I check when I am at the store but it is also a nice tool for planning your shopping trip.

*Save Benjis+*:  This has the scan feature that Red Laser has but it does not list as many options for other places and prices as Red Laser offers. It is a bit more limiting but it was free when I downloaded it.

*Amazon*: Always handy to compare prices.  They just do a good job overall of getting the mobile and online experience.

*Black Friday*:  This app is a good idea generator app.  It lists products with consumer review ratings and then links to buy.  It is ok but you have to scroll through all the items to see if they have what you want…there is no search element.

That is all for now.  Happy shopping!