Angry Birds to Where’s My Water–A new look for new faces

Becoming almost an overnight success, Angry Birds, was able to transform how we think of mobile gaming and how big of a market you can expand into from that games success.  Today not only does Ravio Entertainment, gaming company responsible for Angry Birds, see revenues from it’s mobile game, but also sells over a million plush toys a month, as well as t-shirt and school lunch boxes.   It has even developed a comic strip online.  The point is no one can tell how far can this go?  Well Disney wants to find out with it’s Where’s My Water mobile game.  Disney is no stranger to character development but does realize that it could take millions of dollars and an extraordinary amount of time on something that is no guarantee, especially if you developing an new movie.  Evident in the Mars Needs Moms, a spring theatrically release that was anything but a success.  However they see opportunities in mobile game which is a relatively low cost way to develop a character and gain a strong following.  The end result hopes to be a movie and a new character to add to Disney’s repertoire.  This concept is not new and has had variations of success in the past with games like Tomb Raider.  There is a lot to gain here, even if Swampy isn’t as successful as Disney visions it will be.  The cost for developing this games as I stated early is pretty cheap and can easily be adapted to international markets making popularity almost endless as well as various revenues streams.

Intel or AMD?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jzrEqQLuMow

So I was sitting here thinking about what else I can blog about.  I was thinking about global brands but nothing really stood out.  And then I thought of Intel.  To me, the brand Intel has always been a source of frustration.  I worked at an etailer for 3 years as a buyer/product manager for AMD CPUs.  Not only was I the buyer but I also sell the product online.  I was responsible for pricing and setting up promotions for AMD CPUs.  You can imagine my frustration at having to turn on the tv and only see Intel (my product’s main and only competitor) commercials.  As you all know, Intel commercials always end with a catchy tune.  I’m sure that every time you hear those 4 notes, you’ll be reminded of Intel CPUs.  Having a bit of a background in CPUs and what it is that they do, I can tell you that at the heart of it, there really are no big difference between the two brands.  They have comparable CPUs at different levels of expertise.  Their product prices are comparable as well.  It’s interesting to see how the two companies take such different approached to marketing.  Actually, it almost seems like AMD’s marketing are nonexistent from a consumer’s point of view.

It’s very clever that Intel took to marketing directly to the consumers when they are mostly a B2B company.  Now when consumers go to a Best Buy, they’ll ask for a computer or laptop that has an Intel processor because that’s the only brand that see on TV.  I’ve worked closely with people from AMD and I’ve often asked why they don’t go the same route as Intel.  Of course they give me a lot of off hand comments about how they’re not Intel, they’re more traditional in that they build relationships with their B2B vendors and clients and funneling that type of money into actual discounts for their end users (consumers) instead of wasting the money on commercials.  I’m not completely sure how much truth is in that and whether it just has to do with the fact that they don’t have the money to spend on commercials.  Either way, I think what Intel has chosen to do with their marketing strategy is definitely working.  And as much as I had a personal working relationship with the people at AMD and they’ve been the best of vendors, I will probably ask for a laptop with an Intel processor next time I’m in the stores for a new laptop.

Kia launches new branding campaign

Kia has decided to launch a new global marketing campaign aimed at increasing awareness and core beliefs in their brand.  They are calling it “Inspired by what you like, Kia, the power to surprise”.  Their main area of marketing this new campaign is going to be through TV ads and social media.  Kia plans to release this content in 7 languages and seeks to harness the power of social networks to help communicate and push its slogan as stated above.  One of the key roles in this campaign is going to be their customers.  Social networking sites will allow their customers to post what they like about their Kia’s in a localized place for everyone to see and read.  Kia’s main spokesperson, tennis pro Rafeal Nadal, was chosen as the face of this campaign.  The decision was a good one choosing an international star that can easy be recognized across many countries.  This campaign is quite a contrast to the core competencies Kia used to first enter the market, cheap and affordable.  But constant improvements in their designs and a stronger customer base allowed them to branch away from what they did best in order to obtain a more long term marketing strategy.  They are slowly developing what used to be a commodity auto mobile, into a global brand.

The Emergence of the Korean Car

So I came across this blog while on my husband’s computer.  He’s a car guy and constantly has all these car blogs up.  I clicked on a few links and found this blog.

http://www.thecarblogger.net/2011/12/hyundai-elantra-sales-soar-to-record.html

It seems that the Hyundai Elantra is enjoying an unprecedented success here in the U.S. and in Canada.  It’s breaking all records in 2011 and sales were up in November even with stiff competition from Ford, Chevy and Honda.

I found this article interesting because it’s come to my attention in the recent years that there are more and more Korean cars on the road.  Not only that, Hyundai and Kia has been consistently churning out eye catching commercials and advertisements.  It seems to me that they are positioning themselves to be quite the competition for car companies such as Ford, Honda and Toyota.  With the recent Prius recall/issues by Toyota, I’m wondering, are Korean cars replacing the Japanese car brands as being the most reliable and affordable?

I have to admit, I personally feel that Hyundai and Kia has a lot of improving to do to compete with their Japanese competitors.  They might be cheaper in price but a lot of the materials used for the cars, such as the interior, are cheap as well.  Keep in mind, this is just my opinion and I might be a bit biased.  I will however commend Hyundai especially for their clever marketing strategy. I still remember a commercial they had a few years back that really grabbed my attention and made me chuckle.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hr-wISyGSW0

 

As for Kia, there’s the commercial with the hamsters.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=miC1VZ9UVCQ

Though I find this commercial quite annoying, I won’t deny the fact that it just might be annoying enough to grab your attention and stay with you (if not the commercial then at least the song will be stuck in your head for days).

Whoever it is that they’ve hired to revamp their marketing strategy and to expand into the U.S. market, it’s working.

7′ 6″ Yao Ming Hopes to Score BIG on name

Yao Ming defined all odds first by being reaching 7′ 6″ inches tall then by being one of the first Asian players to break into the NBA, and now he is testing his luck with pino, merlot, and cabernet sauvignon.  One might think, how the heck can a former NBA basketball player with no wine making experience, or history with wine for that matter, plan to buy a California winery and make it successful?  Then you read into his marketing plan, and think to yourself, “hey, this might just work.”.

Yao Ming announced that he was going to be buying a California winery and begin his next adventure after basketball establishing the Yao Ming Family Wineries.  Already teaming up with one to the largest French beverage distributors Yao Ming plans to market his wine strictly to the Chinese market.  He is also going to be asking for a price as tall as him 1,775 yen or $289.  This is a rather large asking price for a winery that has no history, but Yao figures his name alone with suffice and who can argue with that theory.  California couldn’t have a better pitchman in China than Yao Ming. He is one of the country’s biggest stars and is credited with boosting China’s interest in the NBA. During his nine seasons with the Houston Rockets, his games were broadcast on national television in China, and he was selected to carry China’s flag during the opening ceremonies at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. He has endorsed everything from Apple products to his father’s Chinese restaurant in Houston.  He truely is one of the most recognizable faces in China, and because of all of his success, he has built a reputable brand name, himself.

Investors believe that the Yao Ming name is not the only positive that this winery has going for it, they also see a real chance for California wines to penetrate the Chinese market.  From 2005 to 2009, wine consumption in China  has doubled but France has been the main benefactors of the consumption surge.  Theres seems to be a real opportunity to capitalize on a growing market, and you cannot deny that California has picked the perfect figure to help brand their wine.