April 29, 2019
From Deepak’s neuroscience desk, a look at the research-backed benefits of learning the arts as a kid. And, a great find from Emmanuel Probst: guidance from Lippincott on making technology more sensitive and more human.
BRAND & MARKETING
- Kraft Heinz’s new CEO hails from Anheuser-Busch InBev and brings an important diversity of background and perspective to the struggling entity, along with plans to rejuvenate and grow – not sell – some of the “dusty” brands. In other monumental c-suite moves, Best Buy’s new CEO Corie Barry has been with the retailer for two decades and becomes one of seven Fortune 100 female CEOs. And Snap has poached a former McDonald’s marketing executive as its new / first CMO.
- WPP revisits The Long and the Short of It: Balancing Short and Long-Term Marketing Strategies in its case for building brands – and why doing so is almost a social responsibility with a £6b price tag.
- HBR outlines five myths about strategy, where myth #1 is that strategy is about the long term. As if on cue, McKinsey explores the CEO’s new dilemma: short-term pain for long-term gain.
- There’s been a bit of discussion around brand experience and the importance of infusing humanity into it lately: CMO.com recommends that “human experience” should be the conversation marketers focus on, and Geometry’s global CCO is partnering with Cannes Lions on a Deep Dive Reports series which will feature what great brand experiences look like (hint: put peoples’ needs first). And McKinsey’s 2006 piece on seeing the world as customers do for a more effective customer experience based on journeys, not touchpoints, remains as relevant as ever.
- Amid ever-growing demand from consumers and investors for DTC DNA tests, Ancestry, with its secure foothold in the market, is likely to enjoy a hugely successful (re-)IPO.
- McKinsey digs into the transformation of the brand manager in the increasingly agile, constantly-evolving CPG space. Related, Wharton’s Jonah Berger details the lifecycle of status symbols and the role of social influence.
- Though it may help improve the customer experience, Ben Davis advises brands from getting too carried away with personalization (MarketingWeek’s latest podcast discussesthe shift from demographics- to behavior-driven segmentation to inform strategy, highlighting a few successful applications of this as well as the risks of generalizing about older populations). Related, Dentsu recommends that agencies evolve from just marketing, to forging meaningful relationships, compelling experiences, and other ways of building deeper, trust-based connections with individuals (i.e. “mattering”).
- JWT Intelligence explores the Anxiety Economy, in which instability and disruption are creating new market opportunities. In other signs of the times, Fast Company suggests that one way to get teens to give up junk food is to tell them they’re victims of corporate manipulation.
- Everspring, a new household brand from Target, caters to shoppers looking for “clean” products. This comes as other best-selling germ-killing brands in the world are pouring millions into probacterial health and beauty startups.
- Essence EVP Jon Gittings spells out six tips for creating a winning YouTube campaign, highlighting best practices from the first annual YouTube Works Awards run in partnership with Kantar.
- To establish itself as the authority on travel culture (while also forming stronger relationships and more connections with consumers, Airbnb is turning to original content, but it’s not the only one: high-end gyms are increasingly becoming publishers, too.
RETAIL, SALES & SHOPPER
- Apple Pay has lost another partner, JCPenney, who claims the decision was less about technology requirements and more about low Apple Pay adoption among its customer base.
- Digiday explores how retailers are rethinking loyalty programs after Amazon Prime has redefined customer expectations around this type of offering, and what loyalty means to begin with.
- Related, Amazon raises the stakes yet again, with $800m plans to roll out one-day Prime shipping later this year.
- In a race to own the $49b voice market, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and Apple are looking to transform user experiences beyond the smart speaker and home assistant.
- Research by Ulta and Sephora finds that Centennials will buy nearly anything online, but not beauty products. RPA dishes on the top ten things anyone targeting Centennialsshould bear in mind (informed by recent primary research which included Tinder analysis). And eMarketer digs into how “access” has become the foundation of millennial expectations, and what that means for brands.
- McKinsey details the ever-evolving role of the store in the shopping journey, implications for new, customer-centric design, and practical steps for quick implementation.
- To be more engaged with customers throughout different occasions and day parts, Godiva recently opened its first café, complete with the newly-trademarked Croiffle (yum!), signature coffees, teas and snacks.
- Walmart has just launched its Intelligent Retail Lab (IRL), which features everything from AI-powered cameras and an on-side big data center … to traditional checkouts and 100+ actual employees in the 50,000 square feet retail space. This comes as growing numbers of retailers are testing in-store robots to support operations (at night of course, so as not to freak out customers).
- Image recognition technology has potential to increase product discovery through visual search and improve the overall customer experience – all while increasing revenues.
ON THE HORIZON
- Landor Lab introduces a faster, more agile approach to brand-building.
- Mindshare recaps need-to-know details from some of the big tech players’ earnings last week, and Business Insider sheds light on why Zuckerberg is striving to split Facebook into two by 2025.
Mondelez has invested in Hu Chocolate – and its “get back to human” mission – via SnackFutures, its innovation and venture hub.
Unilever purchased OLLY Nutrition, a wellbeing B Corp company active in vitamins, minerals, and supplements and whose founder also founded method. Unilever is also applying DTCexpertise garnered from Dollar Shave Club to a new category – and one of its oldest brands: mustard.
Walmart has acquired Polymorph, whose technology will help brands selling through Walmart streamline the process for targeting audience segments based on shopping behavior, and includes real-time tools for managing ads and spend.
- Adidas’ new Futurecraft.loop sneaker is the first fully recyclable shoe of its kind.
- Pharma giants like Pfizer and Merck have made poignant portfolio shifts into areas where the opportunities for major breakthroughs are better.
- As Coca-Cola prepares to launch a ready-to-drink Costa beverage, CEO James Quincey is committed to making Coca-Cola a “total beverage company, and notes that “constant innovation is crucial for sustained growth”, noting that “blurring category lines” was allowing the company to innovate in different areas.
- Not to be left in the dust, PepsiCo has just launched a mobile-enabled hydration platform to capitalize on demand for customizable, healthier options and less single-use plastic bottles.
- Kantar uncovers the how and why of cannabis consumption, and CB Insights highlights nearly two dozen seizing the $32b market opportunity it opens up.
- Marketers are increasingly turning to esports to identify, locate, and access.