Zulily, the Seattle-based online retailer saw its media rating jump +12 points or +19 percent to a strong 65 rating position, a new high for the online retail brand. The apparent good media news is still offset by the firm’s closing stock price, which is trading at an all-time low after going public in 2013.

Where did the May media spike come from?  But more broadly, what explains the media build over the preceding 2-years?

May’s increase is part good news, and part bad news.

First, the bad news. The firm announced it would cut its revenue target for the year.  About-face financial announcements always attract strong media coverage.  Unfortunately its very negative.   The one bright spot in the brand’s coverage came in the form of a $150 million investment from Alibaba, the large online retailer in China.  To a certain extend, both storylines helped build media momentum for Zulily.  Alibaba’s decision was driven by Zulily’s low stock price and Chinese online retailers need secure a ecommerce footprint in North America.

Looking beyond May the media coverage was balanced and focused on product introductions, market expansion and partnerships.  The brand moved beyond the critical 30 point rating barrier in June 2013 and never looked back.  As a brand in the media, Zulily has not been able to re-ignite the momentum it gained from its IPO announcement in 2013, and that fact has both caved the company’s stock price and media trajectory (note the relative plateau throughout 2014).