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Nissan Blames Agency for Tweet Knocking Tesla

Last week Elon Musk’s Tesla Motors poached Nissan’s PR chief to lead its marketing and communications efforts. We can see why the larger company might respond by one-upping the upstart, but based on its response to a quippy tweet, we do not think this clip summarizes its strategy moving forward:

While the tweet mentioned by Autoblog Green [H/T Jalopnik] focused on the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission’s decision to block the company from implementing its direct sales model in the state, it’s all in good fun between competitors on social, right?

Maybe not. Nissan immediately deleted the image and blamed it on its social media agency. Pic after the jump.

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The GOP Knows What the Kids Are Wearing

Today in Same Old Story news, someone in the Republican Party anticipated the results of this study about changing political alliances among Millennials and got to work making some ads to appeal to that key demographic: Audi-driving early-30′s yuppies battling problems with facial hair.

Like all political ads, these are collections of cue card quips designed to reduce incredibly complex economic issues into simple talking points.

Of course the ad offers no specifics explaining why an easing of regulations on any given industry would lead to more jobs, much less better jobs. Nor does it explain moves to cut short the unemployment benefits earned by all those friends who (allegedly) can’t find work because of the same regulations…as if this guy’s “friends” work in fossil fuels.

The next ad makes the same points:

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Female Outreach PAC Director Says Women Are Too ‘Busy’ to Worry About Equal Pay

We are thankfully not involved in Texas politics, but something tells us Wendy Davis probably won’t be the state’s next governor. Call it a gut feeling.

Assuming she does lose, she can’t blame it on Red State Women. Here’s Cari Christman, executive director of the political action committee created to promote conservative (read: Republican) candidates to female voters, trying to explain to a reporter why she doesn’t think the state needs any equal pay laws:

Kinda goes without saying that the group supports Davis’s opponent, attorney general Greg Abbot.

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‘Eat Fresh?’ Subway Will Stop Baking Bread Using a Chemical Found In Yoga Mats

subway sandwichSubway announced today that it will be removing a chemical from its bread, Azodiacarbonamide, that is used to increase elasticity in shoe rubber and yoga mats. What the…?

In a statement, Subway, which is “the world’s biggest sandwich chain,” maintains that they’re removing the ingredient despite the fact that it’s FDA and USDA approved.

“Fresh baked bread — and the perception of better-for you offerings –is a major deal to Subway. It’s one of the chain’s central selling points,” USA Today notes. It’s the “better-for you” part — the veneer of healthiness that Subway promotes about its food — that is taking the biggest hit with this news.

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Even the President Outsources Social Media Event Promotion

Looks like President Obama is experiencing what we like to call “American Idol Syndrome.”

Everyone’s aware of his upcoming State of the Union speech; they may have watched it religiously in the past because it was part of every “water-cooler conversation” and most prefer to be in the know even if they agree that there will never be another Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood or even a Clay Aiken.

Now, though? It’s still true that everyone with a job in media or politics will be watching Obama’s State of the Union address, but with so many options for viewing and streaming all sorts of niche content as well as variations on the main event (did we mention that three different Republicans will give responses this year?), it’s easier than ever to tune out and watch something else. Details via Bloomberg:

Will social media help Obama earn more eyes at 9 PM on Tuesday? Color us skeptical.

It’ll probably resemble the latest Dancing with the Stars as the average viewer shrugs and thinks “didn’t I just see something almost exactly like this a few months ago?”

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House GOP Sends Reps a ‘How to Discuss Unemployment’ Doc

The debate over whether or not to extend unemployment benefits, which recently expired for more than a million Americans who can’t find work, promises to provide the public with its next extremely annoying political “battle”—and our two parties have already begun practicing their counter-arguments.

Yesterday Robert Costa of The Washington Post acquired a doc distributed by House Republican Conference chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers to all members of that august body advising them on how to discuss the matter at hand.

Seems that “unemployed people are just lazy, OBV“, while popular with a certain core voter base, doesn’t play so well with the public at large. Who knew?

fullmemo

Nothing terribly surprising in here.

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The Republican Party Teaches Itself How to Talk to Women

Boehner_2417210b

You may have heard that the Republican Party currently has some problems winning the votes of American women—and electing them to office. In the words of House Speaker John Boehner:

“When you look around the Congress, there are a lot more females in the Democrat caucus than there are in the Republican caucus.”

This is definitely not the first time he’s noticed, because party insiders have been talking demographic “rebranding” since a 2012 election in which Mitt Romney lost the female vote by more than 10%. One part of their solution involves “tutoring” candidates on how not to address female opponents, which is important since at least 10 2014 House races involve a female Democrat challenging a male Republican incumbent.

What is it they have to learn, exactly, to win over a group that happens to make up 54% of the electorate?

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Planned Parenthood Enlists Scarlett Johansson to Promote Those Healthcare Exchanges

Venice in the fall...

We understand why the White House doesn’t want to call upon celebrities to promote the new, glitchy healthcare exchanges. The “Hollywood limousine liberal” stereotype is powerful enough to seriously damage any campaign designed to appeal to as many people as possible, so they went with the Baltimore Ravens instead.

Planned Parenthood, however, has a different strategy in mind. The group isn’t concerned with swaying those who believe the concept of actresses promoting birth control to be the worst thing since New Coke, so they’ve they’ve enlisted Scarlett Johansson, Gabrielle Union, and Aisha Tyler to encourage enrollment in the exchanges. When interested parties call their local PP health centers, they’ll hear a recording of one of the three, each of whom the group describes as “passionate supporters”, asking ”Did you know you may be able to enroll in new, more affordable health insurance plans?” and directing them to this online guide to finding coverage in the Brave New Insurance World.

This is hardly a dramatic campaign, and any negative press will come from those who wouldn’t approve of any sentence that includes the words “Planned” and “Parenthood”. But will familiar names and voices really encourage more enrollment?

JetBlue’s Premium Service Rollout Strategy: ‘Don’t Call It First Class’

jetblue-mint-serviceWe’ve been watching JetBlue‘s “Mint” service rollout campaign with interest this summer because it makes for a great case study in brand messaging.

The basics are these: JetBlue has, despite some colorful incidents, established a reputation as the “we all fly coach” airline for the little guy—an image reinforced by clever “we get it” stunt campaigns. The Mint offering toys with that equation by giving certain passengers on certain cross-country flights (New York to LA and, later in 2014, NY to San Francisco) a “premium experience”, but during the rollout, JetBlue’s comms team has taken every opportunity to remind the public and the media not to call it “first class.”

The web copy is telling:

Screen Shot 2013-10-13 at 11.45.15 AM

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13 Political Metaphors More Annoying Than the Government Shutdown

Jay Carney

“My metaphorical cup is this full…”

Retreat to your cocoon, adjust your tin foil hat, pull the wool over your eyes and get ready to drink the Kool-Aid, sheeple—it’s time for a lesson in messages more infuriating than the last season of Lost.

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