BRAND: Nike's share of the U.S. sport footwear market slipped to 53.3 percent in the first six months of 2016 from 55 percent a year ago, while Adidas's rose to 6.3 percent from 4.2 percent, according to market research firm NPD. "They did not keep their basketball offerings updated enough and at the same time we went through a fashion shift away from basketball as the preferred fashion shoe in the United States, so it was a double whammy," said NPD analyst Matt Powell.
ECOMMERCE: In our PandoLand interview with Bryan Spaly, who was a co-founder of Bonobos and sold TrunkClub to Nordstrom for $350 million, he said he’d probably fund more commerce companies and maybe even start another one, despite it being a category most investors refuse to touch. “I think it’s so lame when people blame the economy and the headwinds,” he said of investors’ souring on ecommerce.
BRAND: For the Jordan 31, the conversation started when Michael called the sneaker design team to his annual summer basketball camp in Santa Barbara. He gave them an edict: Go back and look at the three decades of product that Jordan Brand had created. Then build off that history to create something fresh. Tate Keubris, the lead designer for the 31 (and the 18 and 19), said, "Well, let's start at the very beginning." So that's what they did.
BRAND: Almost against their will, fashion magazines are admitting that Birkenstocks are having a moment. In May, Vogue published a story featuring a paparazzi shot of Ashley Olson in a pair of Birkenstock Gizeh sandals and described the brand as "patient zero of the current ugly shoe movement." (Several members of Vogue's staff chimed in saying they "remain unapologetic" about their loyalty to Birkenstocks.) Who What Wear reluctantly offered a shortlist of the brand's least offensive styles for the sake of readers who were clamoring for guidance.
MEDIA: Key findings from the report include that 81 percent of consumer say they frequently buy items they have seen shared on social media. Additionally, 86 percent of female consumers agree that social media has become a chief source of online research when they are thinking about making a purchase. One of social’s key benefits is the availability of authentic, first-person content, with 82 percent of women consumers saying the ability to review insights and recommendations.
AGENCY: When it comes to content marketing, is it best to create or curate? That's a question that plagues many marketers, and opinions are often strong on both sides of the equation. Although marketers today might argue passionately for one approach over another, in reality, the very question of creation versus curation is a flawed one. When it comes to content marketing, wise marketers acknowledge that it's not about them but about the wants and needs of their audiences.
INNOVATION: The drones, first announced a year ago, weigh about 880 pounds, or about a fifth of a Tesla Model S, and when deployed operationally, are meant to rely on solar power to fly at altitudes of between 60,000 to 90,000 feet for up to 90 days, and connect to each other using a laser system called free-space optics. If it works as designed, that would allow for coverage across broad areas, with each drone able to cover a radius of about 60 miles, and cruise while consuming just 5,000 watts—roughly the same amount of power as three hair dryers or a high-end microwave.
DATA: While Google campaigns used to lump desktop and tablet computers together for use in keyword base bids, recent updates announced these two device types will be split up, and advertisers will also now be able to set desktop, tablet or mobile as the base bid for keywords. Aside from different per-click value, there are also frequently updates made by the engines which stand to impact only a single device type. For example, Google’s addition of a third text ad above the organic links on phones in Q3 of 2015 significantly increased mobile traffic, with phone clicks up 51 percent for that quarter.
BRAND: The reason the Tesla Semi (as Musk refers to the truck) is necessary is because it should help drastically reduce cargo transportation costs (fuel represents a significant portion of trucking costs, and that’s passed on to the consumer). It’s also key because a Tesla transport would increase safety, Musk says, as well as making it “really fun” for vehicle operators. As for the multi-passenger vehicle, Musk has something more ambitious in mind than just electric buses. He describes switching the role of bus driver to that of fleet manager.
ARCHIVE: The Census Bureau reports that the four specialty retail categories representing total sales of just over $600 billion grew by only $5 billion between 2007 and 2011 (the last date that this level of detail was reported). That’s less than one percent over four years. The e-commerce players increased their cumulative sales in these categories by $35 billion over the time period. This means that the cumulative sales of brick-and-mortar retailers shrank by $30 billion in just four years! The result of these macro shifts is a Darwinian struggle playing out in the malls of America among physical retailers.
ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: Macy’s says it will incorporate the technology into its mobile site on the macys.com/storehelp page. Consumers in a Macy’s store can submit questions about locations of products, brands or facilities, and services regarding the Macy’s store they are in. Shoppers will quickly receive a response and can chat further if they need more information. For example, if a shopper types, “Where are the women’s shoes?” Watson could reply, “Women’s shoes are located on the second floor, next to the jewelry department and across from the cosmetics counters.”
ECOMMERCE: Knowing your competition can help your ecommerce business discover opportunities, avoid mistakes, and differentiate. With this in mind, it can be a good idea to gather and analyze information about your competitors’ product selection, marketing, website, and operations. The aim is not to defeat your competition in some sort of retail war, but rather to learn from what your competition is doing. One of the first steps in understanding your competitors may be to categorize them.
Last Word: Mobile is Cannibalizing Desktop Faster than ever