The Absence of Mastery in the Era of the "Instabrand"

These days, thanks to the modern promise of microwave success, designers, singers, performers and almost anyone with an “idea” can feel entitled to strike gold in an instant without the burden of any hard-earned knowledge, formal training or any real dues paid. The same is true of this new generation of “instabrands” that seem to pop up every day.  Make me instafamous.

Amazon Has Scared Target Into a Management Shake-Up, Just Like It Did to Walmart

In May, Target Chief Digital Officer Jason Goldberger was seated on a stage talking about his promotion. But just four months later, Target has eliminated Goldberger’s job. What the shake-up really comes down to is simple: A panicked decision driven consciously or unconsciously by the realization that nothing Target has done has slowed Amazon from eating up more and more market share in North America. Sounds familiar?

  • September 27, 2016

Why Most Cereal Brands Are Discontinued Within 5 Years

As the New York Times reported earlier this year, breakfast cereal sales have dipped considerably in the past 15 years, from $13.9 billion (2000) to less than $10 billion (2015). "Almost 40 percent of the millennials surveyed said cereal was an inconvenient breakfast choice because they had to clean up after eating it," wrote Kim Severson, at the Times. Other cultural changes — such as a heightened sensitivity to high-carb, sugar-packed cereals and a general shift toward protein-heavy breakfast foods like yogurt — have impacted cereal as well. It wasn't always this way.

  • September 19, 2016

9 Digital Marketing Stats That You Need to See From This Week

It was an unusually good week in digital marketing stats, with some numbers proving to be surprising and others mind-boggling. Check out these nine stats that caught our eye. Nothing like 9 stats on 9/9.

  • September 9, 2016

Gettin' My Missoni On

Well, I don't have any of my purchases on yet, but Tuesday morning at 5:30am, I 'got my Missoni on' at Target.com. I logged on in my bathroom, hair still wet, teeth not yet brushed. I nervously and excitedly clicked away and chose a dress, swimsuit, and four scarves. The last time I felt such Internet excitement was when, again from my bathroom at 6:00am, I finally got Lady Gaga's 'Born This Way'? video premiere to load. Minutes later, after updating my Facebook status to share the news of my purchases, I was even swapping texts with a fellow fashion-obsessed friend. I was telling her what I scored online, and she was sending me pictures of the pre-opening scene outside a local Target store. I was one of the lucky hundreds of thousands of self-proclaimed fashionistas to snag some of the Italian designer's mass-market goodies before the site crashed later that morning. 'We are suddenly extremely popular,'? was the unfortunate message shoppers were met with as they were made aware of the site's unexpectedly high traffic. Although the collection was sold at mass retail, Missoni was able to maintain its high-class, designer status by keeping the event fairly secret, and very separate from the main designer brand. It was teased in a blog called 'All The Way Up Here'? where the author described herself as an elementary-school-aged porcelain doll. There were no actual mentions of the brands' collaboration by Target or Missoni in the blog, only a doodle in the margin reading, 'I love these guys! Target and Missoni. I can't believe I'm working for them and they're sending me to New York Fashion Week! So Cool!'? Weeks later she blogged, 'The Target and Missoni partnership wants me, yes, your doll, to take my blog to NYC and continue blogging everything Missoni, Target, and fashion from the style frontlines.'? The collaboration seemed official and on August 10th, the blog posted sneak peeks of merchandise, confirming the rumors. I should share that I was a little skeptical of this overdone, designer-at-mass-retailer concept. Shallow as it may sound, I believe that designer fashion is a status symbol. Why would I spend even a little more on something that isn't easily recognized as 'designer'? without checking the tag? Collections from Paul & Joe, Isaac Mizrahi and others at Target have been barely recognizable as pieces by the designers. Missoni patterns, however, are recognizable and timeless. A print from 1960 is still relevant and fashionable today. This identifiable look and timeless value is what appealed to me. In an economy where labels have become less important to the once label-conscious, Target made me care again. The excitement continues as I eagerly await the arrival of my fabulous purchases!

3D is Coming to a Living Room Near You

By Nira Colonero, Intern, Consumer Insights When it comes to technology, I'm always looking for the next big thing. So when my professor mumbled something about 3D televisions in my Marketing Management class last week, I had to find out more. Three-dimensional films have been around for generations, but new technologies are now enhancing the visual experience right from your own living room, putting you directly into the middle of the action of your favorite TV shows, sports games, and even video games. Companies such as LG, Samsung and Mitsubishi are developing prototypes of 3D TVs that require no glasses, putting the worry of being seen in those bulky, less-than-fashionable 3D glasses at bay. Although this technology will be extremely expensive upon its initial release, it's not a far-fetched fantasy that one day 3D home viewing will be a global norm. This technology will most certainly change the way brands market to consumers. Advertising will enter a new era of unlimited possibilities where 3D will become more than just a marketing gimmick. Brands will have the capability to stop viewers in their tracks with attention grabbing effects that are almost real enough to touch. It kind of gives a new meaning to 'reaching'? a target market! 3D advertising sounds amazing to any marketer, but in the eyes of some consumers, it could be viewed as an invasion of their home.  Brands will have to consider consumer apprehension to this new technology by creating ads that are engaging on a comfortable level. Only time will tell if this will be a new and exciting advertising experience that consumers will embrace and accept.

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