Managing corporate brands by internet file sharing

March 30, 2010

A nice, light snack?

Simon Houpt and The Globe and Mail: Kit Kat spat goes viral despite Nestlé’s efforts.

A global game of Whack-a-Mole broke out Wednesday on the Internet when YouTube removed a gruesome anti-Nestlé commercial by Greenpeace after the multinational food giant complained, only to have viewers flock to the video-sharing site Vimeo.com, where the spot became an instant cause célèbre because of the reputed censorship.

The 60-second video depicts a bored office worker enjoying a Kit Kat, which rather than being the popular chocolate-hazelnut ladyfinger-style confection, appears to be a chocolate-covered ape finger. As he munches on the treat, it oozes blood over his chin and across his keyboard, shocking his co-workers. “Have a break?” reads the on-screen text. “Give the orangu-tan a break.”

1. Direct link to vimeo video (including comments).

2. Related Vancouver Sun article, Coffee Crisp, Kit Kat pose threat to rainforests: Greenpeace.

Franchisors have no idea what is in store for them.

No clue.

Advertisements

Is confidence in all franchising past the Tipping Point?

March 19, 2010

The CEO and president of the International Franchise Association, IFA announces his retirement.

And then their board of directors announces that it’s looking for his successor?

  • Hello…does anyone talk to each other on the premiere franchisor-dominated trade association any more? Nobody cared on the board of directors enough to do anything until Matt Shay went public?

Don over at Blue MauMau makes a great point in his Importance of succession planning.

It is a healthy sign when a board of directors is strong enough to carry out one of its most fundamental jobs, making sure there is a leadership successor.

In the hidden world of the board room, it is a rare outward sign of possible cronyism or a weak board when it has not carried out this function. A vacuum of leadership in a trade association can be disconcerting to its membership. It can be an incredible opportunity for competitors.

The IFA announced yesterday that it has hired an executive search firm—probably with “urgent”, “critical” and “HELP!” stamped all over the job description packet—to find a suitable candidate to replace its outgoing CEO, Matt Shay. He has given his month notice, April 16.

I added my two cents worth in Excellent point on Leadership continuity.

I suggest every half-baked, local not-for profit plans for their leaders’ recruitment, training and inevitable replacement. Leadership planning is the core competency of any boy scout troop let alone the “brain trust” of everything that goes bump in the night in franchising worldwide.

It seems the IFA Board is in crisis. A crisis, I suggest, that has been triggered by almost no new sales or re-sales in a recession (contrary to past cycles). They denied it first, got angry at scapegoats, bargained with Uncle Tom social medias, sulk/in a funk and then will be dragged unwillingly into accepting a new, higher-quality business model (see death stages).

D’oh!!

The elite’s catching on: their dinosaur practices has pushed the industry past the Tipping Point with investors’ confidence.

And they realize they are powerless because the internet’s reputation mechanism lacks an off switch.

John Q. Public investor is waking up (becoming conscious) to the fact that modern franchising is Unsafe at any Brand.

  • This is very good news for franchisees wanting to co-operate with each other and good faith franchisors.

Not so much for the opposite: house negro franchisees and predator franchisors.


The cost to destroy systems has plummeted

February 11, 2010

It’s almost like a physical law: like a law of gravity. It has always been much cheaper to destroy rather than build.Franchisees know this when they accept the destruction of self-worth, confidence and trust that happens during their contract.

Any small group of franchisees can now deliver a fatal blow to their system because of the almost-free, anonymous digital information sharing.

How franchisees deal with their fight- or-flight-or-freeze response will be interesting to watch.

Not great news for the, generally, neanderthal profiteers  of the old order.

WikiFranchise.org


Innis of Canada and Empire and Communications

January 20, 2010

In the 1930s, 40s and 50s, international social science scholars called him simply:

Innis of Canada.

If you mattered, you knew him. And vice versa.

The real deal: perhaps Canada’s brightest guy in any classroom….ever.

“Harold Adams Innis was a man of vast learning whose mind ranged freely over wide areas of knowledge. He combined an unsurpassed gift for the striking phrase and the brilliant generalizations with a dedication to conscientious and original research.

Here he develops his theory that the history of empires is determined to a large extent by their means of communication. He examines the civilizations of Egypt, Babylon, Greece, Rome, and Europe (before and after the printing press) supporting his thesis with a rich array of historical, sociological, psychological, and anthropological data. Innis was one of the first to recognize the powerful influence technology exerted over culture, and he pioneered investigations into the effects of the communications media on society.

Empire and Communications, first published in 1950, was reissued in 1972 for a new generation of students, scholars, and all those interested in our society and its history. It incorporates the notes Innis made in his copy of the first edition – new ideas, quotations, and references – and it includes a foreword by Marshall McLuhan which assesses Innis’ contribution to our understanding of history.

HAROLD ADAMS INNIS was born in Ontario in 1894. He was educated at McMaster University and the University of Chicago, and joined the staff of the University of Toronto in 1920. At the time of his death in 1952 he was professor and head of the Department of Political Economy and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies. He had an international reputation equalled by no other Canadian scholar. Among his other books are The Bias of Communications, The Cod Fisheries, Essays in Canadian Economic History, The Fur Trade in Canada and A History of the Canadian Pacific Railway.”

University of Toronto Press

– back cover

The overwhelming pressure of mechanization evident in the newspaper and the magazine, has led to the creation of vast monopolies of communication. Their entrenched positions involve a continuous, systematic, ruthless destruction of elements of permanence essential to cultural activity.

Changing Concepts of Time (1952)


Social media breaks predatory franchising model

January 20, 2010

It also breaks the franchise bar’s monopoly. There is no place in pride for a courtroom.

Jerome Facher: [to law students] Now the single greatest liability a lawyer can have is pride.

Pride… Pride has lost more cases than lousy evidence, idiot witnesses and a hanging judge all put together.

There is absolutely no place in a courtroom for pride.

A Civil Action movie


Hubris is fatal in any career

January 20, 2010

Michael Geist has a great column in the Toronto Star called Critics misjudged the power of digital advocacy.

He suggests:

As the group began to take flight, it was surprising to see political leaders and analysts blithely dismiss the relevance of Facebook advocacy. Editorials pointed to other large groups to demonstrate the group’s irrelevance, noting that joining a Facebook group was too easy – just click to join – to mean much of anything.

This represents a shocking underestimation of the power of digital advocacy, which today is an integral part of virtually every political or business advocacy campaign.

Social media used to share information, build a consensus and demonstrate bad faith bargaining? Executives reacting using out-moded models of intimidation and threats?

An air of desperation?

Lots and lots and lots of hubris (arrogance) in both politics and in franchising.

Most people can’t adapt when conditions change because their success has blinded them to a new reality.

They get left behind…

…as they naturally should.


Digital advocacy for franchisees Works: now

January 20, 2010

Archimedes said:

Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.

Below is a is a good primer on how social media has helped politicians lever their resources.

Changes in technology change power relationships.

Welcome to the brave new world of franchisee advocacy.


%d bloggers like this: