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December 15, 2016

Here’s Why LaCroix is So Addictive

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The internet was going crazy for this stuff and soon, so were we. It quickly took up more space in our fridge than actual food and filled our recycling bins to the top, even after we crushed them one by one. At some point, I started to wonder: What’s actually in this stuff? And why is it so incredibly addicting?

LaCroix's allure.

December 14, 2016

The Undoing and Redoing of Food

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The nation’s largest food companies now face competitive pressure from two different directions. From one side, there is a movement toward simplicity — simpler recipes, fewer ingredients, less processing. A nice way to label this shift toward simpler foods is “the undoing of food.” At the same time, and from the opposite direction, there is the “re-doing of food” — a process whereby entrepreneurs take on existing categories and seek to reinvent them in a way that improves on the incumbent.

Unfeed me.

December 8, 2016

The Rhythm of Food

Screen Shot 2016-12-08 at 1.27.51 PM.pngHow do we search for food? Google search interest can reveal key food trends over the years. From the rise and fall of recipes over diets and drinks to cooking trends and regional cuisines. What can we learn about food culture by analyzing the yearly cycles in search interest for food, dishes, ingredients, and recipes?

The many facets of food.

December 7, 2016

[Video] Here Are 5 Hot Cultural Trends That Marketers Need to Know for 2017

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Because cultural diversity was a big theme to the 2016 race for the White House, there are predictions that "inclusive economy" will be a buzz term to understand next year. Marketers are going to have to include cultural listening and predictive modeling to identify white space for brands to step in and fill the gaps that are being left by the political system.

Listen and learn.

December 2, 2016

5 Things You Need to Know About 2016's Must-Have Toy, Hatchimals

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Hatchimals may seem like they became this holiday season’s "it-toy" overnight, but the Furby-esque stuffed animal, which children coax out of an egg with 30-plus minutes of nuzzling, didn’t come out of nowhere. Launched globally on Oct. 7th, Hatchimals is the result of some pretty ingenious marketing, and comes from a company with a long track record of generating buzz. Here are 5 things marketers need to know about the craze.

Can adults get in on this?

November 10, 2016

Ad Agencies Accept the #MannequinChallenge

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Move over, Ice Bucket Challenge. Step aside Harlem Shake. The internet has discovered the mannequin challenge. As its name suggests, the mannequin challenge entails standing very still. These are videos of groups of people frozen in place — like mannequins — often in elaborate poses, as a camera wanders through the scene and zooms in on the details.

We're having a mini-moment.

October 31, 2016

What’s Next for Tech and Media in 2017

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Internet giants, armed with a new breed of chatbots, are stepping up a war over messaging services that increasingly hold the key to controlling customer relationships. But these technology trendsetters are missing a chance to tailor services to a large audience of low-income people or those in unconventional households. These are two of the main trends highlighted in a detailed review of the tech-and-media landscape. 

Digital gatekeepers will fare better than content media.

October 26, 2016

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

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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.

September 27, 2016

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

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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 19, 2016

Why Most Cereal Brands Are Discontinued Within 5 Years

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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.

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