Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Motor Trend Green, Rush Limbaugh, And A Nielsen Reality

Ford named The Automotive Green Marketer of the Year by Nielsen at LA Auto Show 2010 - Nielsen research found • 85% of consumers said they recalled seeing a ‘green’ auto ad recently and, on average across the 23 brands measured, 67% of consumers said they had a more positive opinion of green marketing after seeing the ad. • Further to that, 41% of consumers said the ad increased their consideration to buy the featured vehicle. • Green auto ads resonated better than the average auto ad with 12% higher Message Recall, the percentage in which a viewer can recall an ad, the brand or vehicle featured in the ad, and the green message conveyed. • Among nearly 60,000 social media messages analyzed for auto brands, consumers view their green auto marketing efforts in a favorable light with 12 times more positive “buzz” than negative [ctrl-click image to launch YouTube of announcement]. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2010)

Motor Trend Green, Rush Limbaugh, And A Nielsen Reality

This last week during Press Days at the 2010 LA Auto Show, General Motors was doing its best to place its best foot forward and some in the automotive press were more than willing to play along. On the very same day that Motor Trend Magazine announced that it was awarding the Motor Trend Car of the Year 2010 to the Chevrolet Volt ... General Motors placed stock on the open market for people to buy (Initial Purchase Offer - IPO).

This honor by Motor Trend has been cherished by almost every manufacturer throughout the years but this year seemed unusual ... even by Rush Limbaugh.

Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2010)

Motor Trend magazine has fired back, slamming Rush Limbaugh for his ill-informed critique of the Motor Trend Car of the year for 2010 the Chevy Volt by General Motors (GM).

Talk show host, Rush Limbaugh has been on a few rants against GM's Chevy Volt, saying,

Of all the cars in the world, the Chevrolet Volt is the Car of the Year? Motor Trend magazine, that’s the end of them. How in the world do they have any credibility? Not one has been sold [and] the Volt is the Car of the Year.

That prompted this charged, and somewhat petty response from Motor Trend Magazine, editor Todd Lassa:

So, Mr. Limbaugh; you didn’t enjoy your drive of our 2011 Car of the Year, the Chevrolet Volt? Assuming you’ve been anywhere near the biggest automotive technological breakthrough since … I don’t know, maybe the self-starter, could you even find your way to the front seat? Or are you happy attacking a car that you’ve never even seen in person?

The Motor Trend blog continued its trenchant, and unprofessional take down of Rush Limbaugh's disagreements against the Chevy Volt, ending with this nasty left hook:

I’m sure GM would be happy to lend you one for the weekend. Just remember: driving and Oxycontin don’t mix.
Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2010)

I (as both the LA Motor Culture Examiner and the LA Conservative Examiner) have some of the same troubles with the Volt being named car of the year by Motor Trend Magazine when the General Motors plan is to produce ONLY 10,000 of these citizen owned/Government owned white elephants that require an even bigger giveaway of our tax dollars ($7,500 incentive discount from the $41,000 list price) just to try to shove them, dare I say, down our throats?!

They should be selling this car as a car that has a 300 mile range on current infrastructure fuel with a pure electric power extension of maybe 40 miles.

The Volt was also named Green Car of the year all on the same day that GM issued its IPO stock offer. We call this monetizing our tax dollar debt. I already have money in GM thanks to the new rules implemented by the Government here in Carter's Second Term, why would I wish to invest more money in this joke of a Government and Union owned enterprise when there are choices that I CAN make for myself to invest in companies, green companies that are owned by people who actually have a connection to what they make?

Ford was named as the first ever Automotive Green Marketer of the Year by Nielsen ... now there IS a company that has a legacy to its product that one could invest in without having to look over one's shoulder!

This is what the press release had to say about Ford:

Ford has built significant awareness over the past year around their hybrid vehicles and fuel-efficient cars with key campaigns for Fiesta and Fusion Hybrid, as well as their Drive One 2.0 brand ads featuring hybrids and miles-per-gallon (MPG) related ads. In addition, Ford’s official sponsorship of Fox’s reality show American Idol, which put specific emphasis on the hybrid offerings, has helped drive increased awareness of their green message among millions of people every week. Last season, American Idol’s popular Ford Music Video Challenge, in which exclusive Ford music videos aired each week, featured the Fusion Hybrid and Escape Hybrid, successfully grabbing the attention of consumers. Meanwhile, the company continued to break ground in social media with the launch of new apps aimed at expanding its reach to a new class of prospective car-buyers.

“The Automotive Green Marketer of the Year award is not just about great creative, although we all know that’s a crucial element of any effective ad campaign,” said Lois Miller, President, Nielsen Automotive. “However, this is bigger than one creative. This award is for the auto marketer who was most effective at leveraging its brand to further the ‘green’ movement and create positive awareness for all the auto industry is doing to drive fuel-efficiency and eco-friendly practices. This was best exemplified by Ford.”

Basically, this is where the rubber meets the ol' green road ... Ford's contribution takes into account REALITY! ... something Todd Lassa and Motor Trend may have lost touch with a few egos (and possible political campaign contributions) ago.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

AARP Raises Premiums - Advocacy Clashes With Reality

Contrary to Democratic politician's promises when they jammed Obamacare through the Senate and Congress, claiming that when the public found out all that was in the bill they would start to support it, opposition is rising as the public becomes aware of what Washington Democrats actually passed and Obama signed into law. Caption & Image Credit:

AARP Raises Premiums - Advocacy Clashes With Reality

Truth has a funny way of dispelling the aggressive distortion of an advocacy point-of-view.

A classic case in point has popped up over at the insurance and liberal advocacy organization American association of retired persons, AARP. AARP is a non-profit organization which helps people above the age of 50 to lead a peaceful life both health and finance. Most famous of AARP programs is AARP insurance.

AARP is now telling its employees that insurance costs will rise by 8 percent to 13 percent next year, partly as a result of the ObamaCare law it supported.

This excerpted and edited from the Washington Times -

Obamacare spurs AARP to raise premiums
By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar - Associated Press - 6:35 p.m., Thursday, November 4, 2010

AARP's endorsement helped secure passage of President Obama's health care overhaul. Now the seniors' lobby is telling its employees their insurance costs will rise, partly as a result of the law.
AARP added that it is changing co-payments and deductibles to avoid a 40 percent tax on high-cost health plans that takes effect in 2018 under the law. Aerospace giant Boeing also has cited the tax in asking its workers to pay more. Shifting costs to employees lowers the value of a health care plan and acts like an escape hatch from the tax.

"Most plan co-pays and deductibles have been modified," Jennifer Hodges, AARP's director of compensation and benefits, wrote employees in an Oct. 25 e-mail. "Plan value changes were necessary not only from a cost-management standpoint, but also to ensure that AARP's plans fall below the threshold for high-cost group plans under health care reform."
Reference Here>>

Ever since Barack Obama took the office as the 44th President of the United States, AARP endorsed the efforts of the Democrat political party in its efforts at healthcare reform. These efforts had little to do with improving a free market approach and everything to do with having the Government become the chief decider on what insurance will look like ... even if the Government has to become the "Single-Payer" in the insurance equation.

The chief reason AARP was an advocate on ObamaCare can be found where AARP makes their money ... in Medigap insurance coverage. Medigap plans are a cash cow for AARP and if people don't need them because they can enroll in Medicare Advantage plans, that's a revenue loss for AARP. Obamacare helps to do away with Medicare Advantage plans.

While the organization has some partnering arrangements with Medicare Advantage plans, they provide a fraction of the revenues to the organization that Medigap does.

Second, if Medicare's benefits are cut by $400 billion or more, seniors will have an ever greater need for Medigap coverage.

"There's an inherent conflict of interest," former AARP executive Marilyn Moon says of AARP's royalty arrangements. "They're ending up becoming very dependent on sources of income."

Tens of thousands of seniors have resigned from AARP, many of them cutting up their membership cards to protest the organization's promotion of health reform.

The new chief executive officer of AARP, Barry Rand, who was a strong supporter of President Obama during last year's presidential campaign, says AARP is not protesting the Medicare cuts because reducing waste and fraud in Medicare will make the program stronger over the long term.

The 40 million-strong AARP represents people 50 and older, including retirees on Medicare and Social Security. Its endorsement of President Barack Obama's health bill came at a critical time last year, just days before a vote on the House floor.

"The [insurance rate]impact on [our]AARP employees is not a factor at all in our policy-making, which is directed at the impact on our membership and on all older Americans," said said David Certner, AARP legislative affairs director.

One has to ask ... how many 50 years of age and older employees does AARP actually have?

We , at Carter's Second Term, believe - AARP ... the American association of retired persons, is less about protecting the interests of retired persons than it is at protecting its cash cows in the insurance business.