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in the spotlight

Machine Learning Helps Brands Create More Personalized Experiences

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 9, 2015 10:34 AM

Machine learning is fast becoming a brand’s new BFF, helping companies create actionable insights from big data to improve the customer experience and (hopefully) increase brand loyalty in this Age of You, as Interbrand calls it.

Amazon and Netflix are old hands at using algorithmic insights to recommend products to customers and personalize their brands, while Facebook uses it for photo identification and NASA to identify stars more quickly.

Pinterest is also diving in, having recently acquired Kosei, whose recommendation engine understands 400 million relationships between 30 million products.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: GRAMMYs, Apple, HSBC, McDonald's and More

Posted by Dale Buss on February 9, 2015 09:16 AM


2015 GRAMMY Awards brings a big night for Sam Smith, Kanye West x adidas—and a host of brands and sponsors.

HSBC faces criminal inquiries in US and beyond for allegedly "helping clients dodge millions in tax."

McDonald's January sales fall by a worse-than-expected 1.8 percent.

NBC taps Lester Holt as embattled anchor Brian Williams takes leave of absence.

Apple promotes iPad as musician's best friend in GRAMMYs ad:Continue reading...

bc q&a

Aflac Hits the GRAMMYs Red Carpet: Five Questions with CMO Michael Zuna

Posted by Dale Buss on February 8, 2015 07:35 PM

Aflac Duck Grammy Awards 2015

Aflac likes to keep Americans on their toes about what the disability-insurance brand might do next, and now the brand is continuing its mold-breaking ways with its biggest and most integrated marketing effort to date.

The campaign, which includes activations at the 2015 GRAMMY Awards and the Daytona 500 auto race, is built around a new Aflac benefit called One Day Pay, which allows the company to receive, process, approve and disburse payment to policy-holders for eligible claims within just one business day.

It's "our way of saying that no matter what gets in your way, trips you up or slows you down, getting claims processed and paid won't be one of them," said Dan Amos, CEO, in a press release. The campaign thus emphasizes speed and efficiency in a tangible way around viewing live events such as the GRAMMYs or the Daytona 500.Continue reading...

health matters

CVS Celebrates Tobacco-Free Anniversary By Butting Out For Kids

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 6, 2015 04:45 PM

In a major Throwback Thursday this week, CVS marked the one-year anniversary of ending its sales of tobacco products. The retailer is reveling in the positive effect its efforts have had in helping Americans quit smoking, despite whatever financial hit that decision caused to its bottom line.

In addition to cutting off the sale of tobacco products, as part of its corporate rebrand to CVS in September, the company introduced a smoking-cessation program that it says has since “provided personalized counseling and smoking cessation products, when appropriate, to hundreds of thousands” of customers.

Supporting that claim, CVS released data showing that 67,000 patients have filled a first prescription for a smoking-cessation drug or nicotine-replacement therapy in that time. It's also had thousands more engagements with its customers who smoke and want to discuss how to quit. The CVS website's Smoking Cessation Hub also posted seen nearly 1 million visits through December.Continue reading...

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