Brands Brief: Megyn Kelly’s Move to NBC Likely to Draw More Democratic Viewers

Top Stories

  • Former Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly’s move to NBC News is likely to attract more Democratic viewers, according to a new poll. (Morning Consult)
  • The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, also known as PhRMA, is gearing up for the group’s biggest national ad campaign, at a cost of tens of millions of dollars, to rebuild the industry’s image in the wake of bad publicity surrounding drug prices and executives like Martin Shkreli. (BuzzFeed News)
  • U.S. companies like Fitbit Inc. are concerned they may be on the receiving end of President-elect Donald Trump’s critical tweets because of overseas production. Some businesses are turning to PR pros for advice on how to proceed. (Reuters)
  • Volkswagen could top Toyota in worldwide vehicle sales after spending a year working to repair its reputation following an emissions-cheating scandal (The Associated Press). The German automaker on Tuesday agreed to a $4.3 billion settlement tied to the scandal. (Reuters)

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Events Calendar (All Times Local)

Personal branding symposium, in Denver 11:30 a.m.
Annual conference for media relations professionals, in New York 12 p.m.
Small business social media secrets events, in Garden City, N.Y. 6 p.m.
Managing PR and communications event, in New York 10 a.m.
Ragan webcast on storytelling to reach millennials, Generation Z 1 p.m.


Advertising and Marketing

U.S. companies have new business risk – being labeled ‘anti-American’ by Trump
Lauren Hirsch and Mike Stone, Reuters

Some U.S. companies are reviewing potential mergers while others are rethinking job cuts or looking at their manufacturing operations in China for fear of being cast as “anti-American” by President-elect Donald Trump, according to Wall Street bankers, company executives and crisis management consultants. Having seen some of America’s largest companies, including General Motors Co, Lockheed Martin Corp and United Technologies Corp, bluntly and publicly rebuked by Trump on Twitter, many others are worried they may be his next target – especially if they have significant overseas manufacturing, have had U.S. job cuts or price increases for consumers.

The Limited Latest Apparel Retailer That Faced Struggles in Changing Industry
Suzanne Kapner, The Wall Street Journal

Leslie Wexner, the chief executive of L Brands Inc., saw the changes that would roil today’s apparel industry a decade ago. In 2007, Mr. Wexner sold 75 percent of Limited Stores, once the cornerstone of his empire, to the private-equity firm Sun Capital, part of a broader move to focus on lingerie and personal-care products through his Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works brands.

Chipotle Profit Slammed by Higher Guacamole Costs
Phil Wahba, Fortune

Chipotle Mexican Grill just can’t catch a break. The burrito chain, still trying to recover from a series of food safety problems in 2015 that decimated the once high-flying company’s business, said on Tuesday that sales at established restaurants, fell 4.8% in the fourth quarter, their fifth straight quarterly decline and slightly deeper than the 3.7% drop analysts were expecting.

Can Revlon Regain Some of Its Lost Luster?
Sharon Terlep, The Wall Street Journal

When Revlon Inc. said last spring it had tapped Colgate executive Fabian Garcia as its new chief executive, shares of the beauty giant plunged. Investors had been hoping the long-struggling New York firm would be sold off. For two decades, the company had a revolving door of CEOs who were unable to stem market-share declines.

Glacéau Smartwater appeals to younger shoppers with new Sparkling flavour
Chris Dillon,

Sparkling water sales are set to soar as CCEP extends its Glacéau Smartwater brand with a new flavour. Available in 600ml bottles, Glacéau Smartwater Sparkling can be promoted in store with new PoS.

Who works in the cannabis industry? A new trade association ad campaign shows its employees.
Katie Zezima, The Washington Post

The cannabis industry is trying to show a different face — one that is far from a stoner stereotype. The National Cannabis Industry Association, a trade association, has launched a new website and series of digital ads showcasing the stories of people who work in the cannabis industry, including a former Marine and older woman who turned to marijuana for relief after having a knee and hip replacement.

These Brand Consultants Turned Nights on the Town Into Market Data
Jennifer Miller, Stamford Advocate

In 2013, Christopher Krietchman was walking down the street in Manhattan, worrying about his flailing meal-delivery company. Krietchman was the founder of Fresh Grill Café, which cooked and delivered healthy meals to New Yorkers.

The Brand Is Strong: Desus and Mero On Talking Their Way To a TV Takeover
Joe Berkowitz, Fast Company

In the back of the studio, perched on a mossy boulder, is a stuffed grizzly bear wearing a Yankee fitted and wheat-colored Timbs. He has a vaguely sour expression on his face, like he can barely believe some of the things he’s heard.

Media and Entertainment

Megyn Kelly’s Move to NBC News Means More Democrats Will Tune In
Laura Nichols, Morning Consult

Republicans and Trump voters are not following Fox News’ former star anchor to her new home base at NBC News. Megyn Kelly is headed to NBC News, an event that a majority of adults knew about — only 31 percent of people in a recent Morning Consult poll said they have heard nothing about it.

Fox News Settled Sexual Harassment Allegations Against Bill O’Reilly, Documents Show
Emily Steel and Michael S. Schmidt, The New York Times

In the weeks after Roger Ailes was ousted as the chairman of Fox News in July, amid a sexual harassment scandal, company executives secretly struck an agreement with a longtime on-air personality who had come forward with similar accusations about the network’s top host, Bill O’Reilly. The employee, Juliet Huddy, had said that Mr. O’Reilly pursued a sexual relationship with her in 2011, at a time he exerted significant influence over her career.

Honda Awards Its Nearly $600 Million Media Buying Business to RPA
Patrick Coffee, Adweek

Honda Motor Company has awarded U.S. media agency of record duties for the Honda and Acura brands to independent shop and longtime creative partner RPA after a review. The win covers nearly $600 million in annual spending.

Clemson-Alabama Thriller Fails to Rewrite Ratings Record Books
Anthony Crupi, Advertising Age

It was perhaps the most riveting college football title game since the fabled USC-Texas tilt in the 2006 Rose Bowl, and yet Monday night’s bruising Clemson-Alabama thriller failed to make a dent in the record books. Clemson’s last-second (literally) come-from-behind victory over the Crimson Tide gave the Tigers their first national football title since 1981 and avenged their year-ago loss in Phoenix, and yet for all the excitement provided by Deshaun Watson and Co., the game’s TV deliveries marked a low for a College Football Playoff National Championship Game.

Social Media and Technology

Twitter CMO finally explains the purpose of Twitter
Matt Kapko, CIO

Twitter has used dozens of words, clichés and redundant phrases to describe itself during the past decade. The company’s CMO, Leslie Berland, owned up to that fact in a speech at CES 2017 that aimed to redefine Twitter and explain why 317 million people use it every month.

How four retailers hurt by tech are now embracing digital
Tanya Dua, Digiday

Over the past few years, retailers have faced their fair share of challenges. As more and more shoppers mine the web and their devices for deals instead of actual store fronts, longstanding brick-and-mortar brands have scrambled to keep up with the shift.

Lush evolves digital offerings to better connect with consumers
Bethany Biron, Glossy

Lush Cosmetics has grown significantly from its days of crowdsourcing product feedback from chatroom forums in the late 1990s. While the U.K.-based beauty brand has since shifted to platforms like Instagram and Facebook to glean consumer insight, it’s managed to find success largely by word-of-mouth and a rabid cult following, much like its beauty peers including Glossier.

Monopoly may replace iconic pieces with emoji faces and hashtags
Parija Kavilanz, CNN

Monopoly’s game pieces may look very different the next time you play. In fact, instead of fighting over the silver shoe or thimble, you could be left holding a bath tub, a dinosaur or even a hashtag symbol.

PR and Communications

Here’s How Big Pharma Plans To Clean Up After Martin Shkreli
Stephanie M. Lee, BuzzFeed News

Martin Shkreli was everywhere last year. After hiking the price of an antiparasitic pill from $13.50 to $750 as the then-CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, the unapologetic, indicted, and widely reviled “pharma bro” helped ensure that the issue of skyrocketing drug prices made news almost daily.

Despite Scandal, VW in Running for Global Sales Crown
The Associated Press

It’s ironic: Volkswagen spent 2016 battling a huge scandal over cars it rigged to cheat on emissions tests. And now stands a decent chance to pass Toyota for the title of world’s biggest carmaker for the year.

Volkswagen confirms $4.3 billion U.S. settlement over diesel emissions
David Shepardson, Reuters

Volkswagen AG confirmed Tuesday it has negotiated a $4.3 billion concrete draft settlement with U.S. regulators to resolve its diesel emissions issues and plans to plead guilty to criminal misconduct as part of the civil and criminal settlement. Volkswagen said with the addition of the fine, the automaker’s diesel costs are now set to exceed the nearly 18.2 billion euros ($19.2 billion) it has set aside to handle the problem.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Illumina Is Using IBM Watson To Get DNA Tests To More Cancer Patients
Christina Farr, Fast Company

For patients with cancer, sequencing tumors can be a beneficial way to improve targeted treatments and connect people with the right drugs, but the process is complicated and many clinics haven’t gotten on board yet. Could machine learning make it easier?

Opinions, Editorials, Perspectives and Research

Why branded podcasting could more than double in 2017
Max Willens, Digiday

Podcasting has always been a lot like old-time radio. In 2017, it’s about to get even more old-timey, as podcast networks, publishers and brands all embrace branded shows.

Millennials and YouTube Ads: Most Watch Until They Can Skip
Alison McCarthy, eMarketer

YouTube has been the leading digital video platform for over a decade and continues to hold strong appeal to US millennials—a group that adopted the digital video streaming platform early on. According to UBS Evidence Lab, 54 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds visit YouTube at least once per day, making it the third-most popular social media platform for daily usage among this age group.

How A Global Insurance Brand Turns Customer Insights Into Long Term Success
Steve Olenski, Forbes

Any brand that’s been able to hang around for over 150 years is bound to be doing something right, to say the least. In this case, a global insurance brand that’s been in business since 1859.

Here’s What Makes Disney the Most ‘Intimate’ Brand for Millennials
Sami Main, Adweek

If you want to see how much media factors into the lives of millennials, look no further than the latest Brand Intimacy Report.ndependent agency MBLM, which is just out with its 2017 report, said its ranking is the “largest study of brands based on emotions.”