Top 5 New Year predictions

It's the time of year when we look forward instead of back

It’s the time of year when we look forward instead of back

so we asked you to give us your two cents on what the future holds for some of the most newsworthy brands. The consensus? Let’s just say 2005 promises to be intense for many.

What should Molson Canadian do?

Molson can learn from domestic car brands. To improve its value it should adjust its product offerings and become more innovative (i.e. flavour profile and packaging), recapture its emotional connection with Canadians – who are now the most ethnically diverse in the world – and increase consumer appreciation for its high quality.

Andrew Barrett, senior business planning director, J. Walter Thompson, Toronto

What impact will Virgin Mobile have?

Virgin will target youth with its sensational brand, a seasoned management team, Branson myth and a pre-paid platform. However everyone in the wireless sector wants youth. It’s going to be a blood bath. The consumer will be showered with more features, functionality, offers and experience, all at a lower price.

Tony Chapman, CEO, Capital C, Toronto

What will save Air Canada?

Its survival was likely never really in much jeopardy. But having emerged from bankruptcy protection with fewer planes, Celine Dion and a redesigned tail logo, perhaps they could really pull it off. Now if they could just do something about that sesame snack thing they keep serving.

Ian MacKellar, SVP/deputy CD, BBDO Toronto

How can the NHL survive the lockout?

The NHL should focus on game product and not ‘the show.’ Sell hockey in the U.S. as a fast and skilled, hard and violent game. It is the only way to get the American audience to pay attention. Don’t try to teach them the game, it is a waste of time. Present the game in all its glory.

John Lee, president, Holmes & Lee, Toronto

What brand will have its best year?

The iPod was the must-have item on everyone’s Christmas list. And Apple has lots more toys and gadgets on the way, including a touch-screen computer that’s already getting great reviews. I think that 2005 will be even bigger than 1984 was for this little computer company that could.

Donna McCarthy, CD, Dory Advertising, St. John’s, Nfld.