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Consumer

Nintendo Responds to Petition Asking for Reinstatement of Same-Sex Relationships in ‘Tomodachi Life’ Game

Nintendo Strikes Down Gay Marriage Requests for Tomodachi Life - IGNJust weeks before Nintendo plans to release its life-simulation game Tomodachi Life in western markets, it has patched out a “bug” that allowed — as the company put it — “strange relationships,” AKA same-sex romances between characters. The decision has sparked an increasingly-popular online petition called Miiquality, which is asking Nintendo to reverse its actions.

Tye Marini, the 23-year-old Nintendo fan from Mesa, Arizona, who launched the campaign last month, said of his hopes for the 3DS game, “I want to be able to marry my real-life fiancé’s Mii, but I can’t do that…My only options are to marry some female Mii, to change the gender of either my Mii or my fiancé’s Mii, or to completely avoid marriage altogether and miss out on the exclusive content that comes with it.”

In response to the petition and growing controversy, Nintendo released a statement, saying:

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Consumers are Clueless Sheep in ‘Marketing: The Musical’

Marketing_ The Musical! - SHOES - CMA National Convention - YouTube

How do you get a bunch of marketing and branding professionals to attend a convention? By reminding them that they have a deeply important social responsibility to hone their skills, because without them, consumers would be lost, doddling oafs unable to make a single decision or find direction or meaning in their empty, uninformed lives. Obviously.

Oh, and making that reminder musical doesn’t hurt, either.

The invitation to the Canadian Marketing Association‘s 2014 convention states matter-of-factly, “People want to want things. Consumers need you to go.” And to hammer that message home, Toronto agency Cundari has created musical numbers from fictional production “Marketing: The Musical,” which feature lyrics like these:

“Should I buy the red one or the blue? I wish someone would tell me what to think; then I would know what to drink.”

And:

“Our cars are pretty much identical in every single way, so I really need some branding to know how much we paid. Without a logo or hood ornament, I’m in a big predicament.” Read more

Impulse Buying Reaches New Level: Now You Can Add Things to Your Amazon Cart from Twitter

#AmazonCart_ Add it Now. Buy it Later. Shop from within Twitter. - YouTube-1As if the “buy with one click” option wasn’t dangerous enough, now Amazon is allowing customers to add items to their shopping carts via Twitter by using hashtags.

“No more switching apps, typing passwords, or trying to remember items you saw on Twitter,” says a female voiceover in an ad explaining the new feature (after the jump), and it’s clear from her exasperated tone that such tasks have obviously been the most inconvenient, exhausting, intolelrable parts of consumers’ lives. Finally, our cries for relief have been heard!

Once you link your Amazon to your Twitter account, whenever you see an Amazon product link in a tweet, you can add it to your cart by replying to the tweet with hashtag #AmazonCart. It’s basically another virtual way to make impulse purchasing even easier than grabbing that candy bar at the Target checkout.

Aside from impulse purchases, though, this just seems to us like one of those “improvements” that might actually be less convenient than the traditional process. Read more

STUDY: Mobile Marketing Isn’t Just for Kids Anymore

gty_smartphone_ll_130104_wmainThink it’s only Millenials clogging up store isles while pausing to check their smartphones for coupons and better deals on the items they’re about to purchase? Think again.

According to a Thrive Analytics study recently released by the Local Search Association, Baby Boomers and seniors are catching up to their younger counterparts when it comes to actively using their mobile devices throughout the local purchasing process. The data suggests that it may be important for businesses to invest in their mobile presence and marketing in order to attract and retain not just younger customers, but those of all ages.

While 97 percent of Gen Y respondents said they use their smartphones at least sometimes when shopping in-store, 69 percent of seniors and Boomers admitted to doing the same; sure, the younger crowd is still ahead, but the majority of the older crowd is taking part in mobile — that’s pretty huge. Read more

Spirit Airlines CEO Explains What You Get When You Fly on a Budget Airline

Spirit A319-3The average consumer wants to get things on the cheap, but doesn’t always know what exactly that means. On its face, spending less money is always preferable. But when you actually experience the budget option, it can be disappointing.

That’s exactly what Spirit Airlines is running up against. With the cost of air travel increasing, flyers are looking for a deal. Their eyes are drawn immediately to the low price tag. But then they take their flight and they’re looking for more.

A couple of weeks ago, a story ran in The Dallas Morning News that included a stat from the US Public Interest Group showing that Spirit has the “highest rate of consumer complaints among US airlines.”

Rather than get angry and defensive (at least not publicly), Spirit’s CEO Ben Baldanza decided that the problem could be a failure to communicate. After all, over the past five years, eight out of 100,000 customers have complained, leaving 99,992 people who didn’t. He decided to respond with an explanation.

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THIS JUST IN: Equifax Sued by ‘God’

THIS JUST IN 2As a refresher, why do we do this column in PRNewser?

At PRNewser, we love the random tips and toolslisticles and ancillary research. However, we’ve noticed certain stories trending in the news recently: crap that just can’t be grouped with anything else other than, well, other crap.

So, you see, at times there are PR stories that don’t fit snugly in a cushy box. And this particular tale could be terrible PR: not for the big guy upstairs but for the big credit bureau downstairs.

No, this isn’t a joke. No, this isn’t a slap on the church wrist. This is real — “God” is suing credit authority bureau Equifax for taking his name in vain by refusing to believe that it’s real.  Read more

The Multifaceted Asian Consumer Market

Uniqlo Store SoHo Mannequins1 Cropped“Overall Asia is a market in flux, with radical changes and an influx of tech and global brands. It creates a society where consumers are being pulled in different directions”, said Bernd Schmitt. Not only are there distinctions between developed and emerging Asian countries, but he noted it’s also important not to generalize or stereotype Asian consumer and cultural trends.

Schmitt’s perspective is based on extensive experience living, working and traveling throughout Asia. He’s a visiting professor at Singapore’s Institute on Asian Consumer Insight (ACI) and professor at New York’s Columbia Business School. He recently spoke at an event in New York about his latest book, The Changing Face of the Asian Consumer. Joining him were panelists Colin Mitchell, Ogilvy & Mather’s worldwide head of planning, and Brian Buchwald, CEO/co-founder of Bomoda, a marketplace for Chinese consumers to purchase premium global brands.

The main takeaways focus on the interplay of economic, cultural, brand and market factors.

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Mazda Recall Is an Arachnophobe’s Worst Nightmare

*Someone needs to give me a medal for inserting this image into this post without yielding to a complete mental breakdown

Disclaimer: This PRNewser writer is the definition of an arachnophobe — meaning, I would sooner hop into a burning car than one filled with spiders. Think that’s kind of a strange and specific example? Think again.

I learned about this bit of news via a text from a loving family member who has spent our lives demonstrating that love through acts of spider-related harassment. “Hear about the Mazda6 recall?” it read. “It’s your worst nightmare.”

According to Reuters, for the second time in three years, an eight-legged engineering challenge called the Yellow Sack Spider has caused Mazda Motor Corp to issue a major recall for Mazda6 sedans in North America; the spider, which likes the smell of gasoline (who doesn’t?) weaves a web that blocks a vent in the engine. These webs can restrict fuel flow, reducing fuel tank pressure when the emission control system releases vapors from the evaporative canister. This can put extra stress on the fuel tank, which could potentially crack and leak fuel, increasing the risk of a fire.

That’s right. Spiders are trying to blow you up. Read more

Putting ‘Real Women’ In Marketing Campaigns Is Quickly Becoming A Gimmick

betabrandTrend alert! Lots of brands are using “real women” (and “real people” in general) to sell their product.

Recently, it was Betabrand, an online retailer of crowdsourced clothing based in San Francisco, that got a lot of buzz for the campaign it launched for its latest collection. Rather than using models, the company outfitted PhDs with the new clothes.

“Our designers cooked up a collection of smart fashions for spring, so why not display them on the bodies of women with really big brains?” founder Chris Lindland told AdWeek. Sigh… sure, why not.

This isn’t the first time the brand has done this sort of thing, so the company and its founder are committed to the idea. And we’re in favor of brands using images that reflect and celebrate all the wonderful and beautiful things that women are. But what started as a cool way to showcase a product and the women who would be using it has turned into the bland and somewhat offensive thing that Lindland describes in that quote.

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Autopay Sucks Because You Could Die and No One Would Care

autopayIt’s not like banks need any bad PR but thanks to always being peer pressured into putting your bills on auto pay or the mean girls will point at you and laugh, there’s some serious uncool image goings on here.

Meet Pia Farrenkopf of Pontiac, Mich. 

Well, you can’t really meet her because she’s dead. In fact, according to WXYZ-7 (ABC), Pia has been dead for possibly six years… yet, was just found this past week. Why? Damn Auto Pay! Yes, really.

Find out how after the jump…

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