Google has acquired Waze, free mobile navigation application for around $1.1 Billion. This is a big ticket purchase for this year by the tech company after Yahoo’s tumblr acquisition. There has been rumors of Facebook going for this purchase but it has been confirmed that Google finally purchased it. Waze’s social oriented traffic app has generated a lot of map data. Waze would add crowd sourced info to the Google traffic updates with real time updates. This is an Israeli based company. Here is the official release from Google on its blog.
Some of the reasons How Waze would benefit Google are
1) Waze is a crowd-sourced mapping app with a member base of 50 million. This strong community provides real-time updates of traffic, accidents & route updates. This coupled with Google maps is a big USP for Google maps.
2) Google is the king of maps. Apple which launched maps, had problems associated with it & is yet to gain wide popularity.
3) Can keep competitors away with this prized acquisition.
4) Google is still catching up in the social networking space & Waze gives a strong community of around 50 million members
5) Facebook is yet to make a mark in the maps business. With mobile browsing booming, Waze would help Google gain a strong hold in Mobile space
Times of India which is celebrating its 175 years has launched a microsite to celebrate the 175th anniversary. Under the tagline “Leading change for 175 years” R.K. Laxman‘s Dhoti Clad man undergoes a makeover with one one half wearing a Dhoti & another a Jeans pant. The microsite has a poll section & also a blog. One can also go through various vintage pics & videos. They have a strong presence on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter & Google+ with millions of followers & likes. Their apps on Android is also in the top spot.
Times Internet, the largest Indian Internet Network, is the digital venture of Times of India Group. They have a strong internet presence with gaana.com, zigwheels, indiatimes shopping & times deal. Times Internet is also the official broadcaster of Pepsi IPL 2013 cricket matches on youtube.
SRK quenches his thirst with the soccer team watching him. The soccer team grows up watching him drink Frooti. A perfect combination of SRK, soccer team & the background music gives a great visibility for Mango frooti. Katrina kaif is the brand ambassador for Slice. Slice advt has Katrina kaif, a young man and another woman with a background music. The man chooses between Slice & another mango drink. Imran Khan and Parineeti Chopra are the brand ambassadors for Maaza. They would be featured for the first time for this ad. This mango drink is from Coco Cola.
So this summer, there is a fight among Parle’s Frooti, Coke’s Maaza & Pepsi’s Slice. With the summer reaching its peak & to quench the thirst, companies are roping in brand ambassadors to build visibility & reach customers easily. Brands are roping Bollywood & Cricket stars as ambassadors to their products.
At the BlackBerry 10 event, RIM has been re branded as BlackBerry. It is also changing its stock symbols to BBRY in NASDAQ & BB on TSX. With fierce competition in the smart phone market from Apple, Samsung & others, the going had been a rough ride for RIM. The event also saw the launch of long awaited BlackBerry 10 launch & Z10 & Q10 handsets. Re branding would help Blackberry reinvent its brand image & presents a single image to the market. RIM had a great market share before Apple, Android & others came on stage & resulted in the fall of market share.
Fans are Forever, a Havells Fans TVC, features yesteryear’s Bollywood superstar Rajesh Khanna. The TVC begins with Fans kya hote hain…mujhse poocho. From Shock Laga to Wires that don’t catch fire, Havells advts have become the talk of the town. Now with this advt, Rajesh Khanna is making a comeback appearence after a long break. The TVC ends with Mere fans mujhse koi nahi cheen sakta. This is also his first TVC. This is a great advt for fans & helps in establishing a good rapport with buyers. The element of nostalgia found in the advt helps users identify with the product. Brands are trying to differentiate & to beat the competition, advertisements are getting creative by the day.
Pinterest is the latest socal media site which has made the marketers buzzing these days. Pinterest has become the talk of blogosphere & social networking. In Pinterest, members can pin images, videos & other objects to their pin board. A large percentage of the users on Pinterest are women. Brands can reach more customers, drive traffic, increase visibility & also sell products. It is already sending more referral traffic to many sites. Along with facebook, twitter, youtube, google+ it has become a major site for brands to reach customers. Many pinterest like clone sites have also been started. As women are majority decision makers, brands are finding it easier to reach them through this site.
Buyology has released the 2012 Most Desired brands in the US. Buyology uses its proprietary technology to measure the brands. Men & women have different desired list of brands. This list has been released by Buyology & uSamp. Companies are spending millions of dollars on advertising & Marketing activities to create relationship with the brands. With the advent of social media, consumers are expressing their opinion about the brands. 220 diverse brands were evaluated with 4000 subjects. Southwest Airlines ranked #1 for both men & women. The list can be found at their website.
Finnair’s republic day celebrations on its flight from Helsinki to New Delhi on the republic day. The crew members danced to the song from Om Shanti Om movie. The crew shook legs, waved hands & danced to the tune of the song ‘Deewangi Deewangi’. The act lasted for around 2 mins & it took the passengers by surprise. It is a very creative marketing stretegy. The video posted on youtube has got lakhs of views. This helps position the brand to a very specific audience & also helps in branding.