Every meaningful movement in business usually has an origin which is seeded from an authentic place. Over time the masses flood in and the original concept becomes a caricature of itself and the story gets lost over time.
Before there were Instagram models and hip hop moguls with their own Vodka brands there were artists like Run DMC who wrote songs like "My Adidas" about products they actually loved... not just so they can bag a sneaker deal.
In fact, it was Adidas who actually had to track down Run DMC to initiate discussions back in 1986 (yellow pages?) for what would end up being a $1 Million endorsement deal (a mind-blowing figure back then).
Let's continue to support the innovators coming from a place of passion in 2019.Read More
Lately, a lot of people in the marketing and tech community have asked me when I'm going to refocus my expertise on "Gen Z".
Well..that would be like leaving a close football game in the 4th quarter.
The fact is, at an age range of 22 to 38 this year, Millennials are just starting to impose their will on business, culture, and society at large.
As the first generation to grow up with the Internet in the household, Millennials are now slowly starting to enter the C-suite and bringing their ideals along with them. This means your B to B buyers are becoming Millennials, as well as your high net worth investors.
Now this generation has the financial power and business clout to match their societal impact... and they haven't even gotten started yet.
#millennials #entrepreneurship #marketing #GenY #GenZRead More
Today Apple's stock is facing one of it's worst days in history down nearly 10% When the company decided to sell its products directly on Amazon late last year it was a clear sign that Apple was facing headwinds and needed mass distribution to maintain its growth. Chinese tariffs are not helping either.
Looking ahead into the 20s (only a year away!) we will start to see the form factor now known as a mobile phone start to evolve. In fact I believe your AirPods will look more like the future phone than your phone itself. Where do you see the phone headed into the future?Read More
More clear than ever heading into 2019..... avoid the middle. We are in a clear "Barbell Economy" and the smart businesses know they need to pick a side. There are "$100 jeans" in every category and those are the products that will increasingly find themselves in no man's land.Read More
If you manage a large brand in a low involvement category the stakes have never been higher. Many brands are still latching onto big retailers to help them hit their quarterly numbers, but to me this is no different than Blockbuster enjoying its steady DVD rental business in the early 2000s
Consumers will continue to shift their purchases of CPGs to Amazon
Once powerful CPG brands can no longer rely on their powerful big box distribution to drive volume
Private label pressure is mounting both from Amazon (through Amazon basics) and big box private label (Walmart’s Great Value brand.
Here are a few new paths I’d be looking to pursue:
Create or buy on-demand services for consumers to collect first party data and direct sales channels (Wag, Glam Squad, Handy)
Create multi-category subscription services bundled with content to differentiate
Buy or build in-home hardware (Washing Machines, Vacuum Cleaners, Dishwashers) to use as a loss leaders to drive intravenous selling through proprietary smart home integrations
“Status updates are the new status symbol.” - said me
The way Millennials and Gen Z are building social currency is not through cars, houses, and watches but on the accumulation of experiences which are shared with others.
This undeniable shift is altering how the new consumer is spending their time and their money. It's clear to many that prospects for job offers, friendships, and relationships are directly impacted by one's online persona.
Gen X's BMW = Gen Y's Coachella
There are obvious downsides to this global cultural movement as there were downsides with the rampant consumerism in the 90s where kids defined themselves through the brands they adorned. People haven't changed just the world around them.Read More
Today we crossed the 100 customer milestone at Suzy which includes some of the most prolific brands in the world. Since officially launching in March it has been a whirlwind ride, to say the least, and it goes without saying that our incredible team is by far the sole reason we've been able to reach this meaningful accomplishment in a relatively short period of time….Read More
When you hear about 50 to 60-year-old tech execs routinely going to Burning Man you know that the socially acceptable norms have changed for "acting young". Societal levers like Instagram, Tinder, and Urbanization has forever changed what it means to "grow up" in America. For better or worse, kids are growing up faster and adults are growing old slower and this has massive implications for any brand that is targeting their traditional notion of "mom and Dad". Restaurants nightlife, entertainment, and the broader travel sector will continue to see tremendous growth in targeting older, more affluent Americans at stages in life which would've been unthinkable just a decade ago.Read More
What brand is more important at a traditional news media publication? The brand of the publication or the brand of the reporters? Look at Bill Simmons who instantly created a new media brand based on his personal brand right after he left ESPN. I question what news looks like in 10 years. Will it just be a bunch of verified reporters on Twitter crowdsourcing images and sources? In a world where "trust" seems to be a rare commodity, I believe reporters as personal brands will outweigh business brands as news mediaRead More
Press a button and have the service arrive at your door. The birth of this business model is only just beginning as the millennial urbanization movement gathers steam. If I am a CPG manufacture I am either buying or building a Glam Squad, Handy, Wag, or Zeel as the first party data and intravenous sales model is just too critical to pass up when the alternative is a “race to the bottom” on Amazon or declining brick and mortar retail traffic.Read More
Do you have teenaged kids? How are you going about preparing them for tomorrow’s career path which will look remarkably different than the career paths of today?
Being a “jack of all skills and masters of none” or pursuing a path in “management” is a fool’s errand as we enter the 20s.
Despite the recent tariff legislation offshoring and outsourcing is here to stay and we are re-entering a world where trade and technical skills are going to be what matters in a globalized economy.
Lastly pursuing a career at a big company and working your way up the corporate ladder will be far less reliable than being the “CEO of you”.
Straight As ok your report card is nice.. but one A+ and all Cs is even better.Read More
The top piece of advice I give to consumer marketers in this everlasting “barbell economy” is to AVOID THE MIDDLE at all costs.
Focus on the value side and focus on utility and supply chain efficiencies providing the best product at the lowest possible price. - Walmart, Vizio, Dollar Store, Southwest Airlines
Focus on the Luxury market: with storytelling, product innovation and premium time saving services . - Apple, Net a Porter, Aman Hotels, Prada, Jet Smarter
At all costs though... avoid the middle.
Moving forward our nation’s most prolific brands will have to increasingly make tough choices and “pick a side” in order to contend with the eroding middle class.Read More
The urbanization movement for the new consumer is here to stay.
Millennials in developed markets around the world are getting married later, having children later, and are pushing off the desire to “grow up”.
Yesterday’s version of the American dream , a “white picket fence” lifestyle has taken a u-turn back to cities.
This trend has reverberating impact on the future of education, parenting, retail, jobs, and undeniably real estate.
I often get asked “but why about when they start a family and can no longer afford it?”.... well that’s where gentrification comes in... the livable boundaries of cities will continue to push outward for a generation that simply doesn’t want to leave.Read More