Target Brands for the Future with Neiman Marcus

Every advertisement should be thought of as a contribution to the complex symbol which is the brand image.   ~ David Ogilvy

Target Brands for the FutureThis year Target is employing a new holiday promotion strategy, teaming up with Neiman Marcus to offer exclusive high end merchandise.  As Laura Heller of Forbes notes the holiday collection is a result of Target’s year-long shift towards multichannel retailing.  And as indicated by Vanderbilt University’s Marketing Professor Steven Posavac during an interview with Nightly Business Report’s Tom Hudson, Target is getting the better end of the branding deal.  There’s a potential upside for Target, appeal to shoppers’ luxury aspirations, while there’s an inherent downside for Neiman Marcus, a loss in brand exclusivity.

Target is venturing that the Neiman Marcus collection will drive momentum forward from the early days of the Black Friday start to the final days of the Christmas shopping season notes Thomas Lee of the Star Tribune.  In addition, according to Target’s Chief Marketing Officer Jeffrey Jones, the future lies in creating content that will enthusiastically be shared by brand evangelists.   Further, Macy’s CEO Terry Lundgren recognizes the rise of the omni-channel consumer in his recent interview with Ruben Ramirez of NBR, which makes the case for appealing to shoppers online.   YouTube’s Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 24 Collection video is one such example of shareable content, which by the way shows the designers are poised to benefit from their association as well.

So, what do you think of Neiman Marcus and Target’s collaboration?  How do you interact with retailers?  Share your thoughts about your favorite brand partnerships.

Vanaja R.

Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.


Foodies Share a Bite with Social Media

Find something you’re passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.  ~ Julia Child

Foodies Share a Bite with Social MediaHave you used Yelp to check out a restaurant or checked in using Foursquare?  If so, you’re part of the social media revolution influencing the way we interact with dining, recently profiled on Nightly Business Report.  As the business of food has grown even more competitive and ad revenues for food magazines are declining, social media can serve up a distinct advantage.  According to Telsey Advisory’s Analyst  Tom Forte, restaurants can benefit from favorable reviews and timely user generated content.  After all, reviews on sites, such as Yelp, Grub Street, and Chowhound, can provide restaurants a recipe for success.

Today’s foodies are more sophisticated and are apt to share in communicating food experiences.  We’re even more engaged than in Julia Child’s day with the explosion of blogs, TV networks, and websites.  Christina Grdovic, Vice President and Publisher of Food and Wine magazine, notes there’s an opportunity for additional reach in the industry.  It makes sense to connect following a strategy of multiple touch points, such as magazines, web sites, apps, and newsletters, meeting food enthusiasts wherever we are.

So, have you booked reservations using OpenTable?  Do you tweet about your culinary experiences?  What’s your favorite food trend?  Share your thoughts on dining and social media.

Vanaja R.


Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Crowdfunding, the Power of Social Media to Move Mountains

You make a living by what you get.  You make a life by what you give.   Winston Churchill

Crowdfunding, the Power of Social Media to Move MountainsMore and more social media has been influencing how I get my news.  Just the other day I came across a short film, Caine’s Arcade, on my Facebook wall shared by my friend, Nancy Arter of Outward Media.  The overwhelming response to an online video showcasing a child’s enthusiasm illustrates the capability of social media for fundraising, in this case over $200,000 to date for a scholarship fund.

Recently, Nightly Business Report also featured an in-depth series on crowdfunding.  Social media offers organizations an alternate way to fundraise.  Bake sales, for example, may become a thing of the past.  As noted by Erika Miller, AmeriCorps is using Fundly, the largest social fundraising outlet in the nation, to support teachers.  The options for harnessing the power of crowdfunding are endless.  The Low Line, a project for an underground park in New York City, leaned on Kickstarter to fund its full-scale demonstration.  Accion, the largest microfinance lender in the U.S., partners with Kiva to reach out on the behalf of small business owners.

So, how do you get your news?  What are some examples of online videos that have moved you?  Share your thoughts on how fundraising is changing as a result of social media.

Vanaja R.

Caine’s Arcade Short Film:  A cardboard arcade made by a 9-year old boy
Nightly Business Report
Social Media & Successful School Fundraising 
– Crowdfunder Kickstarter’s Creative Ways 
Crowdfunding:  Transforming the Way Non-Profits Raise Money 


Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Social Media Shapes the Business of Farming in the Heartland

… years ago, we thought of the Web as a new medium, not a new economy.  ~ Clement Mok

Social Media and the Business of Farming in the HeartlandThe Internet may be fundamentally changing how economies work; case in point, social media is beginning to influence the business of farming in the American Heartland, reports Diane Eastabrook of Nightly Business Report.  Farmers are communicating with each other about growing conditions and commodity traders are keeping track of their real-time conversations, with grain futures in the balance.

Farming is an especially tough business to be in, subject to the whims of nature, the pressures of global supply and demand, and not to mention, the possibility of crop failure.  So having the latest, first-hand information is key to tipping the scales in the farming community’s favor.  Social media by way of Facebook and Twitter provides farmers, seed companies, and grain processors access to each other’s observations, and traders a greater opportunity to hedge their bets on futures contracts.

So, do you follow social media to get the inside track on shopping deals?  What are prices of grain products like in your area?  Share your thoughts on how the economy is changing as a result of social media.

Vanaja R.

Nightly Business Report – The Facebook Economy:  The Farmers’ Report


Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Social Media Gives Underdog Under Armour The Edge

The Internet is based on a layered, end-to-end model that allows people at each level of the network to innovate free of any central control. By placing intelligence at the edges rather than control in the middle of the network, the Internet has created a platform for innovation.   ~ Vinton Cerf

Under ArmourSocial media’s greatest strength may be giving voice to the underdog.  As President and CEO Kevin Plank of Under Armour noted recently in an interview with Nightly Business Report’s Rick Horrow, the company is poised to compete with athletic giants, the likes of Reebok and Nike, and is leveraging its innovation with social media.

As a lifestyle brand delivering hi-tech performance, Under Armour has used social media to drive engagement with its winning “Ultimate Intern” competition, a search contest that has succeeded in creating brand buzz.  Of course, social media is uniquely suited to reach the company’s core target audience of 13 to 24 year-olds.  Under Armour continues to innovate by kicking it up a notch; by giving us in effect a 50 yard line view of player performances tweeted by experts at the NFL Draft Combine.

So, what’s your favorite athletic brand?  Do you play with athletic companies via social media?  Let’s all make an effort to get in the game.  Share your thoughts on innovating in the digital age.

Vanaja R.

Nightly Business Report –Under Armour CEO on Company Success

National Retail Organization – How Under Armour and Warby Parker win with social media


Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.

Super Bowl Ads Take Two: Touchdown! Social Media Teams Up with the Gameday Broadcast

First we thought the PC was a calculator. Then we found out how to turn numbers into letters with ASCII – and we thought it was a typewriter. Then we discovered graphics, and we thought it was a television. With the World Wide Web, we’ve realized it’s a brochure. ~ Douglas Adams

Do you like watching Super Bowl ads?  If you said yes, you’re not alone.  As noted by Nightly Business Report’s Susie Gharib , one quarter of Super Bowl viewers watch the game just to see the commercials.  This year as usual did not disappoint, both the game and the commercials were a big hit!  I’ll let you know my favorite ad a little later on… There was however a new “drive” this year, the preview of commercials on social media.

My question to you, do you like the option of a sneak peek prior to the big game?  Speaking for myself and fans in general, yes!  Also, from the advertiser’s point of view, there’s the potential to maximize your presence and thereby get more bang for your buck.  After all, ROI can’t just be measured in dollar terms but also in brand value.  Last year’s Star Wars themed Volkswagen Passat ad, according to VW Group of America CEO, Jonathan Browning, resulted in an overall benefit to the brand culminating in the growth of all business and specifically Jetta’s over 50% sales growth.  What will be the return on this year’s prerelease of Super Bowl ads?

So, do you agree in today’s digital age, it really does take two, online and broadcasting, to generate fan excitement and have a successful Super Bowl ad?  Or do you prefer to be surprised on gameday?  Share your thoughts and your favorite Super Bowl commercial.  As promised, here’s mine, Honda’s CR-V spot showcasing an updated version of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.  Full disclosure, not only am I a fan of the original 80’s movie, but my family also owns last year’s model.

Vanaja R.

2012 Honda CR-V Game Day Ad2012 Volkswagen Game Day Ad2012 M&M'S Super Bowl Ad2012 Doritos Super Bowl Ad

Nightly Business Report:  The Risk and Rewards of Super Bowl Ads

Ferris Bueller Super Bowl Ad:  Matthew Broderick Stars In Full-Length Spot For Honda


Copyright © 2012 My Marketing Nirvana.  All rights reserved in all media.