Business Strategy Marketing

  • For the past couple years, college football and basketball coaches have gone nuts text messaging recruits. The reason is pretty simple -- coaches are limited in the number of phone calls they can make, but there are no restrictions on text messaging. That might all come to an end August 1. The process will start today as the NCAA's management council considers a proposal to prohibit the practice, limiting non-voice communication to email and fax.

  • Thousands of people make their way through different stores, while taking in the annual Boxing Day sales on Tuesday, Dec. 26, 2006 at a mall in Toronto. (AP PHOTO/Nathan Denette, CP)

    The Landor Breakaway Brands Study identifies a list of 10 brands every year that have grown and been transformed through excellence in brand building. These are brands that have achieved the most meaningful improvements in brand health and subsequently in business value. Because investments in brand building take time to be realized, the study looks at the growth of brands over a three-year period.

  • Tiger Woods might be the world’s most marketable athlete, but he isn’t necessarily good at selling everything and companies aren’t necessarily great at using him either. So right before the Masters begins, I’m going to dedicate some of this blog to tell you who is making sense of using Tiger and who has no clue.

  • Myles Brand, NCAA President

    We expected to see tickets upper deck tickets selling for face value ($77) for tonight's game. But the Florida fans seemed to have driven up to Atlanta and purchased some of the tickets on the street. The going rate for one of these upper deck seats is about $200 apiece, which is very reasonable. This is not including the "Distant View" seats, which are so ridiculous I'm not sure they should even be sold.

  • Georgetown Hoyas

    Hoya Paranoia: Florida, UCLA and Ohio State will all outsell Georgetown in merchandise this year - by a mile. But it's not an apples to apples comparison since Georgetown doesn't have a football team -- seen as the biggest sport driver of sales. Georgetown also doesn't have anything close to the alumni base of the other Final Four participants. Ohio State's undergraduate population is about five times that of Georgetown's.

  • LeBron James

    Why I Don’t Gamble: At this time of year, I will fill out a bracket sheet, but I have never put any money on a single game. Why? Because it doesn’t allow you to really enjoy the game. (I know some will argue it adds more excitement).

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    Is America's health craze is officially over? McDonald's is field-testing its massive new Angus Third Pounder sandwich. CNBC's Jane Wells reported -- burger in hand.

  • VCU beat Duke 79-77 last night. That’s a big deal, but you’ll consider it an even a bigger deal when I take you through the finances of it all.

  • Last night I debated John Challenger of Challenger, Gray and Christmas, the firm that each year comes out with that March Madness lost wages study.

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    The Financial Brackets:Let’s be honest, the reason why a Cinderella is a Cinderella at this time of year is because the mid-major team -- given how much less they spend and how much less they make -- shouldn’t have a chance to win. Yet the games are played and they do win -- see George Mason through to the Final Four last year...

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    I'll never forget what NBA commissioner David Stern said in June 2005 in a New York Times article. The piece talked about how some young kids were more interested in playing NBA video games than watching the real thing.

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    Every once in a while, I have to bash someone. And today, I'm laying down the smack on whoever came up with the new LPGA logo. Have you seen this thing? It's the silhouette of woman in a visor with some big curly 1980s hair.

  • K-Swiss page90KSWSfalsetrue2pricetruefalsefalsefalse0QuotefalsetrueChartfalsetrueNewsfalsetrueProfilefalsetrueAdd to Watchlistfalsetruetrue shares took a dive on Thursday after the company said there would be a nice decline in domestic revenues and that it had made substantial investments in product development and marketing. One of those marketing costs is Anna Kournikova, their new spokesperson. I have to say, I saw Kournikova do what she did for products while she was playing. It was amazing. Take some tennis strings, slap her face on the packaging -- sales triple! I always got the impression she was one of the few athletes -- even though she never won a single WTA title -- that really did get a return on investment. But now? With her being off the court and Sharapova doing very well, I’m thinking K-Swiss investors would be more encouraged if K-Swiss spent its money finding the next great young tennis star in Russia than investing in a player that won’t ever play top competitive tennis again.

  • Microsoft Zune

    Microsoft is busy pushing its entertainment offerings. The tech company's new secret weapon in selling digital downloads to play on a cell phone or other devices is a new digital rights management technology called PlayReady. The upside for consumers: content purchased for one mobile device isn't limited to just that gadget. Users can register several devices to share content. This is a rather controversial approach, but could really catch on eventually.

  • Time Warner reached a deal Monday to sell the Atlanta Braves to Liberty Media Corp., according to the Wall Street Journal. Because there is so much thrown in, it's hard to see exactly how much the Braves were valued at, but I'd say it's already too much. Public companies have no business owning sports teams. They, for the most part, don't make rational sense...

  • Shares in advertising and marketing company Publicis Groupe  rose 4.1%  Wednesday after the company reported that a strong performance in Latin America, the Middle East and Africa helped revenue rise 4.8% in the fourth quarter.

  • Internet search is undoubtedly one of the most useful tools out there, but it’s never been synonymous with entertainment. Microsoft is hoping to change this – and maybe even beat Google at it’s own game – by launching an interactive search engine that aims to be both functional and entertaining at the same time.

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    The Super Bowl consistently draws the largest single audience for a sporting event, making it very attractive to advertisers. That may be no coincidence given that the NFL is the best-run organizations in professional sports as evidenced by its decision to share revenue among large- and small-market teams to assure a healthy mix of teams reaching the Super Bowl.  A dull game doesn't diminish interest among bettors who are playing the point spread.

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    Some might be frustrated that Miami Dolphins head coach Nick Saban is heading to Alabama, but with the pay package college boosters can help provide, you can't really blame him. Also, kudos to the folks at Nutri-System who have really figured out that the way to grow revenues is to tap into the huge potential of guys who want to lose weight. How do you do that?

  • Nastia Liukin

    I read with interest the Chicago Tribune’s story about the marketing of their kick returner Devin Hester, who tied the NFL record last Sunday for most touchdown returns in a season (6). “Shoes, clothing, soft drinks - you can pretty much name all the main product categories - they’re there,” his agent Eugene Parker told the paper. “I’m just trying to focus on finishing out the season,” Hester said. “Hopefully we’ll be able to win the Super Bowl and in the off-season I’ll look forward to that.” Here’s my advice to Hester and Parker...