brand news

In the News: McDonald's, Target, Dannon and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 22, 2014 09:08 AM

In the News

McDonald's launches Olympics social campaign.

Target drops health coverage for part-timers.

Dannon's Super Bowl ad will be a Full House reunion. 

Amazon denies it's considering online pay-TV service.

Apple gets court backing ahead of Samsung showdown.

Cadillac remains challenged by dealer inventories.

Candy Crush app owner seeks to trademark "candy."

Christie's says sales hit auction industry record of more than $7 billion.

Clorox advises against bleach facials.

Denny's wins with weirdness in social media game.

Dots retailer files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Dove commissions short film on selfies.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: A-B InBev, Volkswagen, General Mills and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 20, 2014 09:35 AM

In the News

A-B InBev pays $5.8 billion for Korea's largest brewer.

Volkswagen goes on offensive to bolster US product lineup.

General Mills files patent to cut salt and fat in dough.

Chevrolet endangers effectiveness of Manchester United deal by pulling back from Europe.

Dropbox value hits $10 billion.

EPrize rebrands itself as HelloWorld.

GM runs risks in how much new CEO Barra is symbolic.

GMC undergoes an overhaul.

Geely dismisses any concerns about Volvo management.

Hongqi's revival efforts are dashed by low sales in China. 

IBM revives efforts to sell low-end server unit, likely to Lenovo.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Best Buy, Target, Google and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 17, 2014 09:25 AM

In the News

Best Buy saw cheaper-price strategy fizzle for Christmas.

Target tests small store for urban shoppers.

Google tests "smart" contact lens.

Bitcoin breaks into NBA.

Black + Decker redesigns brand.

Cadbury takes "wearable tech" to whole new level.

Campbell marks 80th anniversary of condensed chicken-noodle soup with social campaign.

Chevrolet boosts presence in Russia.

Coldwell Banker creats pre-launch buzz for Grammys spot.

Domino's plans to remodel all restaurants by 2017.Continue reading...

big data

IBM Transforms Data into Consumer-Facing Tools for Retailers

Posted by Barry Silverstein on January 16, 2014 04:45 PM

One of the hot topics at the National Retail Federation's "BIG Show" this week was data security, made even more timely by the recent security breach disclosures by Target and Neiman Marcus. The trade show's other headliner also had to do with data, but how to spin it forward in a way that promotes innovation and the ultimate customer experience for retail brands. 

"A New Era of Value," the topic of IBM CEO Ginni Rometty's keynote speech, really revolved around Big Data, something Big Blue knows quite a bit about. Rometty shared some mind-boggling data of her own—80 percent of the world's data has been created in just the last two years. Of even more significance than the quantity is the fact that this information could be extraordinarily powerful in three ways:

  1. Descriptive analytics, offering a picture of a company's current status, such as product portfolios, market segments, or customers
  2. Predictive analytics, which model possible outcomes of initiatives and market trends
  3. Prescriptive analytics, sophisticated models that recommend next steps based on analyses across complex criteria and data.Continue reading...


Showrooming is Down, But Retailers Need to Exploit Big Data to Connect with Consumers

Posted by Dale Buss on January 13, 2014 11:07 AM

Showrooming is way down, sharing is way up. Those are two pieces of good news for retailers from a new study by IBM about consumer behavior in and expectations about the new era of "omnichannel" retailing.

Yet huge challenges remain for retailers that want to optimize relationships with their customers using big data and digital technologies. "You have to be able to gather all the unstructured data and understand what is the next best action for you as a retailer," Keith Mercier, associate partner in the IBM Retail Center of Competence, told brandchannel. "That's where they're trying to build the next phase."

The new IBM study—shared today at the National Retail Federation's annual conference—surveyed more than 30,000 consumers around the world. It showed a nearly 40 percent drop in online purchases resulting from showrooming, Mercier said.Continue reading...

tech in the spotlight

CES 2014 Recap: Tech Connects to Get Up Close and Personal with Consumers

Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 10, 2014 07:16 PM

As the International Consumer Electronics Show wraps up its annual spectacle in Las Vegas, it's difficult to make the call on who or what exactly 'won' CES 2014. With brands (and marketers) big and small from nearly every sector presenting impressive tech, it's hard not to call everyone a winner—especially consumers. 

Still, this year's show presented some key themes, the most apparent being "connectivity." As consumers adopt more technology into their lives, the task at hand is to now connect those technologies—create an ecosystem of sorts that allows for seamless control and enjoyment. 

On that front, the automotive and mobile industries made a strong showing at CES, where Google's Android unveiled the Open Automotive Alliance and connected-car platform with nearly 10 major automakers signed on, including GM, Honda, Audi and Hyundai. The Alliance, meant to develop connected-car innovations with the same standards, plans to see the first vehicle with Android integration by the end of this year. 

Similarly, AT&T announced its own connected-car platform and new AT&T Drive Studio in Atlanta, where the company will partner with developers to create specialized apps for automakers like Audi and Tesla. 

But the car wasn't the only environment to get the connected treatment.Continue reading...

tech innovation

CES 2014: IBM Puts Watson to Work as Tech Consultant with $1B Investment

Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 10, 2014 12:55 PM

IBM remains bullish on Watson, its supercomputer made famous on Jeopardy!, but it is having a hard time leveraging the super-smart artificial brain beyond trivia and into revenue-producing businesses.

IBM maintains that Watson has revolutionary real-world applications in a variety of verticals including health care and investing, with CEO Virginia Rometty projecting that Watson would generate $10 billion in annual revenue within 10 years. But according to Wall Street Journal, as of last October, Watson wasn't meeting revenue hopes, generating "only" $100 million. Setbacks include costs in “training” Watson “to master the particulars of various businesses.”

To better realize its potential, IBM announced at CES this week in Las Vegas that it is investing $1 billion into making Watson the centerpiece of a new business group based in New York—a group that will build out a productive and profitable ecosystem for the super-computer. Already employing 2,000 people, IBM projects the unit to create $20 billion in revenue by 2015.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Target, IBM, Kate Spade and more

Posted by Dale Buss on January 10, 2014 09:14 AM

In the News

Target now says 70 million were hit by data breach.

IBM's Watson group unveils cloud services for big data. 

Fifth & Pacific adopts Kate Spade as new corporate name.

AB InBev switches CMOs as new Bud Light campaign gears up.

Apple flows devices into corporate world.

Applebee's revamps kids menu.

Barnes & Noble digital sales drop but bookstores show signs of stabilizing.

Caribou Coffee debuts new loyalty program.

Daimler reports 10 percent rise in Mercedes-Benz 2013 vehicle sales.

Ford looks to Fiesta to increase sales in Japan as Mulally says he's staying put.Continue reading...

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