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Ad Placement Can Be Tricky When a Brand is in The Mud

Posted by: David Kiley on June 13, 2005

With all the news reports about General Motors last week cutting 25,000 jobs, and a possibility of salary cuts looming later this summer to help restore profitability, I found it a little incongruous to come out of a news item on all the automaker’s problems and into a TV commercial for its latest deal—an ad featuring employees talking up the company’s products and proclaiming that consumers could buy GM vehicles for the employee price. “Pay what we pay.”

Reader Comments

Jack Krupansky

June 13, 2005 1:35 PM

What can anyone do when such a massive enterprise is simply a giant train wreck in slow motion?

Virtually everything that GM can do will be faulted. It's a true lose-lose situation.

Their only hope is to completely restructure all the way to the point where even skeptical critics can stare in awe and say "Wow! Now that's impressive." They've not even started the hard-core restructuring. Everybody's still in denial and believes that a little tweaking here and there will do the trick.

It's like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

Here's another brand angle: GM as an umbrella brand simply has to go, but quite a number of the underlying product brands and models still are great (Corvette, GTO, Cadillac, Escalade, etc.) So, the question becomes how to rescue the good brands and eliminate the "bad" umbrella brand.

-- Jack Krupansky

Kevin Stirtz

June 14, 2005 10:46 PM

David, I agree. If a company is so big (or chaotic) they can't synchronize their messages a little better then they need to find a better way to communicate. Though I own a small publication that relies on advertising revenue, I've never been a big fan of mass media advertising. I'd rather see a company thrive by delivering products their customers can't live without. In this age of the Internet, "build it and they will come" is no longer a marketer's fantasy. It can actually work!


June 15, 2005 12:05 PM

I have read the difficulty of Ford and GM. Ford needs a turnaround strategy where it can gain access to International Market. Local Patnership with the local car automaker helps to establish Local Brand. It has been so successful with Proton who forms a patnership with Lotus to form local brand. To do that Ford must do marketing research, find out what the customers want.

For example, in some countries Ford is seen as a big waste of car, hungry for pretol.

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News, opinions, inflammatory meanderings and occasional ravings about the world of advertising, marketing and media. By marketing editor Burt Helm, Innovation Editor Helen Walters, and senior correspondent Michael Arndt.

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