Marketing That's Anything but a Gift

Marketing That's Anything but a Gift

Ah, the holidays. 'Tis the season for back massagers, key locators—and less than stellar marketing from these two titans of the stocking stuffer.

Apple's Marketing Does the Job; Samsung's is Less Than Galactic

Apple's Marketing Does the Job; Samsung's is Less Than Galactic

The biggest rivalries are born of great passions: Red Sox versus Yankees, Coca-Cola versus Pepsi. This year the prevailing matchup is between Apple's iPhone 5 and Samsung's Galaxy S4.

Does M&M's or REESE'S Win the Real Candy Crush?

Does M&M's or REESE'S Win the Real Candy Crush?

In a battle of the taste buds, there's no clear winner between Hershey's-owned REESE'S and Mars-owned M&M's.

Shoppers Wait to See What JCPenney and Kohl's Have In Store

Shoppers Wait to See What JCPenney and Kohl's Have In Store

Despite their shared focus on the "cost-conscious mom" demographic, retailer giants JCPenney and Kohl's have very different marketing strategies.

Which Hotel Marketer Puts the Luxe in Deluxe?

Which Hotel Marketer Puts the Luxe in Deluxe?

Staying in a luxury hotel like the Ritz-Carlton or the Four Seasons is about one thing: the experience. The question is, who has the sleekest marketing?

Is Baskin-Robbins still the flavor of the month, or can Cold Stone Creamery scoop it?

Is Baskin-Robbins still the flavor of the month, or can Cold Stone Creamery scoop it?

We all scream for ice cream, but what two of the top ice cream chains are screaming for is a clue.

Can the Man of Steel Beat an Iron-Strong Franchise?

Can the Man of Steel Beat an Iron-Strong Franchise?

Superman may be faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, but how does the last son of Krypton stand against the "cool exec with a heart of steel," Iron Man?

Breakfast at Tiffany's or the Red Carpet With Harry Winston?

Breakfast at Tiffany's or the Red Carpet With Harry Winston?

Tiffany & Co. and Harry Winston are both "a girl's best friend, but from a marketing standpoint, only one brand can wear the crown jewels.

Watch This: Comcast and DirecTV Square Off

Watch This: Comcast and DirecTV Square Off

Whatever you consider to be "must see," there's no shortage of options in digital entertainment. So, how do Comcast and DirecTV stack up against each other? Here's a quick look at how both companies fare across various marketing channels.

Which iconic luxury automobile brand has the drive to finish first?

Which iconic luxury automobile brand has the drive to finish first?

In the luxury car market, Lincoln and Cadillac both have deeply rooted reputations—but which one has a more successful marketing strategy?

Microsoft's Xbox Runs 360s Around Sony's PlayStation 3

Microsoft's Xbox Runs 360s Around Sony's PlayStation 3

Game time: Who wins when it comes to marketing, Sony's PlayStation 3 or Microsoft's Xbox 360?

Sudden Death: The Ravens & Niners Through a Marketing Lens

Sudden Death: The Ravens & Niners Through a Marketing Lens

The business of NFL football is much more than the game on Sunday.

Which Dating Site Delivers the Love? Match.com vs. eHarmony

Which Dating Site Delivers the Love? Match.com vs. eHarmony

The stigma on relationships that originate online has vanished. Now it's just a matter of choosing the best site. But which site has the best marketing?

Jobs Available: Two Popular Employment Sites Go Head-to-Head

Jobs Available: Two Popular Employment Sites Go Head-to-Head

How do Monster and CareerBuilder stack up against each other? Here's a quick look at how both companies fare across various touchpoints.

One Power Tool Company Drills Down Into the Brand Experience While its Competitor Sputters

One Power Tool Company Drills Down Into the Brand Experience While its Competitor Sputters

It's never a good sign if a potential customer can't even find a brand's website—or its social channels. Such is the case with Bosch Power Tools.

Oil giants try to stay slick while containing the spillage of negative perception

Oil giants try to stay slick while containing the spillage of negative perception

The brand reputations of oil giants BP and Shell are frequently haunted by past controversies—but which brand strikes oil with its marketing?

Come fly with me: A side-by-side comparison of two top travel sites

Come fly with me: A side-by-side comparison of two top travel sites

Orbitz and Kayak are two of the bigger fish swimming in a pond that is supersaturated with competing travel sites. So, how do they stack up against each other?

Beauty product retailers tick all the boxes, but only one passes the sniff test

Beauty product retailers tick all the boxes, but only one passes the sniff test

At first blush, The Body Shop and Bath & Body Works homepages have little to distinguish one from the other—but it's a similarity that's only skin deep.

Presidential candidates fight to the finish with strategic campaigns

Presidential candidates fight to the finish with strategic campaigns

The president race is an epic brand and marketing battle being waged by two warring forces for market supremacy.

Mattress match-up finds one marketing strategy sleep-deprived in key areas

Mattress match-up finds one marketing strategy sleep-deprived in key areas

When it comes to social media and online video, snooze professionals Serta and Sealy Corporation engage consumers with varying degrees of success.

Banking titans compete for consumer loyalty and trust in an era of increased bank fees

Banking titans compete for consumer loyalty and trust in an era of increased bank fees

Two of the largest U.S. retail banks, Chase and Citibank, have attempted to retain customers and acquire new ones by rebuilding trust and boosting brand loyalty through cohesive marketing across their respective websites, in-store creative, direct mail, email, loyalty marketing, and social media channels.

Targeted consumer marketing tactics tip the scale for one super-sized weight loss program

Targeted consumer marketing tactics tip the scale for one super-sized weight loss program

Jenny Craig and Nutrisystem, major players in the $60 billion weight loss market, have much in common when it comes to their direct marketing approach.

Giant specialty supermarket chains attract similar consumers on different marketing levels

Giant specialty supermarket chains attract similar consumers on different marketing levels

We rate Whole Foods vs. Trader Joe's: Which brand has its marketing shelves fully stocked?

Sports retailers fall short on social engagement

Sports retailers fall short on social engagement

As plans for summer weekend getaways are set in motion, people are gearing up for the great outdoors — and we're rating the retailers.

Coffee bars' marketing plans use stale email tactics

Coffee bars' marketing plans use stale email tactics

Americans love good coffee -- but who has the fresher marketing strategy, Peet's or The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf?

Casino and hotel giants fail to take advantage of their direct and online marketing strategies

Casino and hotel giants fail to take advantage of their direct and online marketing strategies

MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment on the Vegas strip are in the business of getting you to have fun, let loose and spend.

Pizza heavyweights build brand affinity and vie for customer loyalty

Pizza heavyweights build brand affinity and vie for customer loyalty

No matter how you slice it, the experience of ordering and consuming a pizza should be fun, fast, easy and, of course, tasty. How do Domino's Pizza and Pizza Hut rate?

Teenage apparel retailers struggle to integrate across marketing channels

Teenage apparel retailers struggle to integrate across marketing channels

Abercrombie & Fitch and American Eagle Outfitters use diverse direct marketing approaches to sell similarly priced apparel to teenagers and young adults.

Customer loyalty strategies determine the department store champion

Customer loyalty strategies determine the department store champion

In addition to long-standing tenure in the retail space, Wal-Mart Stores and Sears Holdings Corp. apply a similar approach to direct marketing, including direct mail, email, social media outreach, loyalty rewards and extensive e-commerce platforms.

Office supply chains apply integrated 
strategies to stoke sluggish sales

Office supply chains apply integrated 
strategies to stoke sluggish sales

Office supply chains Staples and Office Depot started the year in equally disappointing fashion.

Theater titans unleash multichannel
 strategies to fill seats

Theater titans unleash multichannel
 strategies to fill seats

As the holiday movie season gears up, so do the marketing programs of theater operators AMC Entertainment and 
Regal Entertainment Group — marketing strategies that have come to rely upon online sales of tickets and partnerships with online ticket vendors.

Cola giants scurry to attract younger 
consumers in decades-long turf war

Cola giants scurry to attract younger 
consumers in decades-long turf war

At first glance, the marketing strategies of Coke and Pepsi — the two ubiquitous, global players that have dominated the soft drink market for decades — might appear more similar than different.

Athletic apparel and equipment chains 
blend digital and traditional channels

Athletic apparel and equipment chains 
blend digital and traditional channels

A wholly integrated approach to direct marketing and 
e-commerce has elevated Sports Authority and Dick's Sporting Goods to the top of the athletic equipment leader board. Both brands offer similar multichannel approaches that include on- and offline circulars, email newsletters, social media and an e-commerce platform.

Furniture titans face off with multichannel 
tactics despite housing crisis

Furniture titans face off with multichannel 
tactics despite housing crisis

Because of the housing crisis, it's been a challenging couple of years for home-furnishings retailers such as Pottery Barn and Crate & Barrel. However, business is looking up, particularly online.

Hardware chains match multichannel efforts nearly nail for nail

Hardware chains match multichannel efforts nearly nail for nail

With more and more consumers using digital technology throughout the purchase process, home specialty retailers such as The Home Depot and Lowe's are bridging their in-store offerings with a multichannel approach to keep up with the various consumer touchpoints. The two companies share a foundational strategy and execution, if little else.

Sandwich shops compete for $5 lunch 
emphasizing health and value

Sandwich shops compete for $5 lunch 
emphasizing health and value

With cost-conscious consumers looking for cheap, healthy lunch options, sandwich chains are focused on marketing that highlights value. Fast food purveyors Subway and Quiznos both promote sandwiches to consumers as a healthy alternative to burgers and fries at a competitive $5 price point.

Auto maintenance chains race to take the lead in digital marketing

Auto maintenance chains race to take the lead in digital marketing

Millions of American consumers obsess over their cars out whether for fun or out of necessity. Competing for the business of auto aficionados and do-it-yourselfers are many auto repair and maintenance chains, including AutoZone and Pep Boys.

National fitness clubs fight member churn, but better marketing integration is needed

National fitness clubs fight member churn, but better marketing integration is needed

There are more than 30,000 fitness centers in the US, double the number from just 10 years ago, according to a study by business research firm IBISWorld. Two fitness franchises, Town Sports and 24 Hour Fitness, are trying to maintain an edge in this growing sector, though they vary in size and approach.

Retail's nature-loving outdoor brands 
seek e-commerce balance

Retail's nature-loving outdoor brands 
seek e-commerce balance

Choosing to ignore the digital aspects of direct marketing will likely earn your brand the consumers' collective cold shoulder. Just ask The North Face and Patagonia — two outdoor apparel retailers with distinct customer approaches that effectively blend e-commerce efforts with catalog mailings.

Drugstore chains compete for customer loyalty and growing online sales

Drugstore chains compete for customer loyalty and growing online sales

As consumers are faced with rising healthcare costs, competition among the country's leading drugstore chains, CVS and Walgreens, has increased, fueling sector-wide acquisitions and dueling marketing campaigns.

Suburban happy hour kings cultivate new customer relationship strategies

Suburban happy hour kings cultivate new customer relationship strategies

Direct marketing plays a major role in the consumer outreach efforts of competitive brands Chili's and TGI Friday's.

Low-cost carriers earn marketing stripes despite industry challenges

Low-cost carriers earn marketing stripes despite industry challenges

Rising oil prices followed by a brutal recession that saw a plunge in both business and leisure travel threatened the airline industry as a whole over the last few years.

Two floral heavyweights go head-to-head in direct marketing comparison

Two floral heavyweights go head-to-head in direct marketing comparison

1-800-Flowers.com and ProFlowers.com may sell similar products, but use different approaches to compete for their shares of the market.

Two of the travel industry's largest hotel companies face off on their direct marketing prowess

Two of the travel industry's largest hotel companies face off on their direct marketing prowess

Travelers often believe that once you've seen one mid-priced room, you've pretty much seen them all. To unearth the subtle differences from one loyalty program to the next, you must dig deeper still.

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Founded in September 2009, Stirista is an integrated marketing agency that specializes in micro-targeting via traditional and digital channels. Our mission is to help companies, non-profits, and universities alike find new prospects and better understand their existing contacts. We are on the preferred vendor list for a handful of Fortune 500 companies with three of the ten largest companies in the world turning to us for marketing insights. To put it simply, we're young (at least at heart), ambitious, and sometimes impulsive-but always hungry for new ideas.

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Founded in September 2009, Stirista is an integrated marketing agency that specializes in ...