Posts Tagged ‘branding’

No More ‘Mormon’ Tabernacle Choir

October 10, 2018

“The well-known Mormon Tabernacle Choir was renamed Friday to strip out the word ‘Mormon’ in a move showing the faith’s new president is serious about ending shorthand names for the religion that have been used for generations by church members and previously promoted by the church.

The … singing group will now be called the ‘Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square,’ The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said in a statement. It’s a nod to the home of the choir for the last 150 years, the Tabernacle, located on church grounds known as Temple Square in downtown Salt Lake City.”

“Church President Russell M. Nelson announced guidelines in August requesting that people stop using ‘Mormon’ or ‘LDS’ as substitutes for the church’s full name. He said “Latter-day Saints” was acceptable shorthand.”

— “Mormon no more: Tabernacle Choir renamed in big church shift,” Brady McCombs, Associated Press

In other branding news, Dunkin’ Donuts is now just “Dunkin.”

More:

“The world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir is changing its name to ‘The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square,'” Tabernacle Choir blog

Mormon Tabernacle Choir website

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Bayer Gobbles Up Monsanto

June 11, 2018

Bayer Gobbles Up Monsanto

German pharmaceutical company Bayer has the go-ahead to acquire U.S. seed and agrochemical company Monsanto for $66 billion. The new firm will be called “Bayer” rather than “Monsanto” because Americans associate the former with children’s aspirin and the latter with Agent Orange, DDT, PCBs, glyphosate, GMOs, and other now-unpopular products.

Like many German corporations, Bayer has its own dark history. It was once part of the IG Farben conglomerate, which made Zyklon B gas for Third Reich death camps, and Bayer itself used Jewish slave labor in its wartime factories.

But memory is short, so “Monsanto” is out and “Bayer” is in. As Cory Doctorow of BoingBoing puts it, “Bayer and Monsanto merge into a new company called ‘Bayer’ because Nazis have a better reputation than Big Ag.”

More:

“Monsanto is about to disappear. Everything will stay exactly the same,” Zoë Schlanger, Quartz

“Why ‘Monsanto’ is no more,” Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post

“Monsanto to ditch its infamous name after sale to Bayer, Rupert Neate, The Guardian

“Bayer Can Drop The Name Monsanto, But Can’t Erase The Hate,” Elisabeth Dostert, Suddeutsche Zeitung, via Worldcrunch

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Snoopy Is Now a Shelter Dog

October 25, 2016

Snoopy Is Now a Shelter Dog
After 31 years (217 in dog years), MetLife has sent snoopy to the pound. The huge corporation is retiring the cartoon canine as its mascot and speechless spokes-puppy. Many U.S. insurance customers who grew up reading the “Peanuts” comic strip have moved to that Big Retirement Home in the Sky, MetLife plans to spin off U.S. consumer insurance soon anyway, business customers don’t fancy cute cartoons, and prospective international customers have never heard of Snoopy.

The MetLife move will take $12 million a year out of Snoopy’s food bowl. Look for a hungry, crestfallen 66-year-old beagle at your neighborhood’s cartoon animal shelter.

More:

“MetLife is cutting ties with Snoopy after 31 years,” Ashley Rodriguez, Quartz

“MetLife Grounds Snoopy. Curse You, Red Baron!” Christine Hauser and Sapna Maheshwari, New York Times

“MetLife Drops Snoopy: 5 Promising Career Options for the Out-of-Work Pup,” Kelli Bender, People

Bonus: Here’s one for you Trump supporters:

“Was Snoopy fired by MetLife for being too white?” Ed Straker, AmericanThinker

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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President Trump: The Brand

July 26, 2016

 

President Trump: The Brand

Last Thursday, Donald Trump’s acceptance speech in Cleveland was supposed to finally outline the policies and particulars he would implement if elected. It didn’t.

So how would President Trump govern? We found out recently when the New York Times reported that, back in May, Donnie Trump Jr. approached a Kasich senior staffer about making the Ohio governor The Donald’s running mate and “the most powerful vice president in history.”

“When Kasich’s adviser asked how this would be the case, Donald Jr. explained that his father’s vice president would be in charge of domestic and foreign policy.

Then what, the adviser asked, would Trump be in charge of?

‘Making America great again’ was the casual reply.”

That’s in keeping with the current Trump business model. He doesn’t build anything; people pay him to put his name on things they build. The candidate even told us he saw image-building as the president’s chief role last September:

“Our country needs to be glamorized. The branding of our country is at an all-time low. Now, ‘branding’ might not be the most beautiful word to use, but the fact is the country has been labeled so badly.”

‘The thing about branding,” Bill Clinton reminds us, “is … you can be fact-free.”

So if the Republican ticket wins in November, President Trump will subcontract the real work of governing to VP Mike Pence, who should have spoken to all the subcontractors Donald Trump has screwed  before signing up.

More:

“Report: Trump Plans to License His Name to His Administration, Not to Run It,” Eric Levitz, New York Magazine

Related:

“Trump’s Brand Bonanza,” Jennifer Rooney, Forbes

“Brand Trump: How the developer-cum-TV star-cum-presidential candidate became a living product,” Robert Klara, Adweek [2011!]

Update:

“Kasich: Trump Jr. called aide to float VP offer,” Will Cadigan, CNN

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Big Money Buys Nino a Law School

April 8, 2016

Big Money Buys Nino a Law School

A DC area law school was originally named after a Virginia patriot, but just like money can buy you lots of law, it can buy you law schools. George Mason University Law School announced it would change its name to the Antonin Scalia School of Law. Who are the buyers? $10 million came from Charles Koch, who believes there is entirely too much law. And the remaining $20 million? From an anonymous donor, probably in honor of the Citizens United decision.

Washington wags quickly realized the law school’s new abbreviation would be ASSoL or ASSLaw, and hilarity ensued. GMU reconsidered its awkward acronym and changed the name to Antonin Scalia Law School (ASLS). Somebody better tell the American Society of Liposuction Surgery.

More:

“George Mason University learned how hard it is to name a law school after Antonin Scalia,” Tara Golshan, Vox

“ASSLaw is the butt of jokes. So what?” Dave Schilling, The Guardian

“George Mason University Professors Oppose Naming Law School After Antonin Scalia,” Jon Schuppe, NBC News

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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SoDoSoPa: City Living

March 29, 2016

South Park takes on the hip New Urbanism.

More:

“The SoHo Effect,” 99% Invisible

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How to Fix America: Branding

October 5, 2015

How to Fix America: Branding

“Our country needs to be glamorized. The branding of our country is at an all-time low. Now, ‘branding’ might not be the most beautiful word to use, but the fact is the country has been labeled so badly.”

— “Donald Trump Is Not Going Anywhere,” Mark Lebovich, New York Times Magazine

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Lemonade Stands

July 28, 2013

Lemonade Stands

“My kids had a lemonade stand, and it didn’t look like any version of capitalism I’ve ever seen. If we really want our kids to learn how the modern American economy works, we’re going to have to take off the kid gloves.”

“Down With Lemonade Stands,” Michal Lemberger, Slate

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Be Inspired … By Pork

March 5, 2011

Be Inspired ... By Pork

The National Pork Board has decided to use a slogan that transcends “The Other White Meat.” The agency’s new motto for swine flesh is “Pork: Be Inspired.”

This carnivorous creative concept comes via the muses of Chicago’s Schafer Condon Carter ad agency and Chicago, as Carl Sandburg reminds us, is “Hog butcher for the world.” Like all 21st Century inspirations, this one has a website.

The National Pork Board “is itself a bit of pork,” notes Tom Laskawy:

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