BRAND: For Jordan Brand, the 20th anniversary of Space Jam’s 1996 release and the guaranteed popularity and visibility of the Space Jam 11 created a massive opportunity. The company’s response? An integrated global marketing campaign that sought to leverage the Space Jammystique in pursuit of at least four key goals: reaching younger consumers; tapping the original film for retro sneakers and apparel designs; cross-promoting its latest flagship sneaker, the Jordan 31; and giving a high-profile stage to two key endorsers, Blake Griffin and Jimmy Butler.
OMNICHANNEL: But Warby Parker aside — whose rate of $3,000 sales per square foot rate is at Tiffany and Apple levels — showrooms are not huge drivers of direct sales. Yes, 90 percent of Proper Cloth’s sales are online. But having a dedicated showroom space makes a brand feel more legitimate and established. E-commerce will continue to play a huge part, but smart founders understand and appreciate that they’re still selling to human beings. The brick-and-mortar format is changing, that much is certain; but the desire for real life spaces to visit brands in person is not going away anytime soon.
ECOMMERCE: Ecommerce accounts for 8.1 percent of all U.S. retail sales, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. But social media's percentage of those online sales is minimal and has decreased since 2014, according to Ed Terpening, an analyst at Altimeter Group. "Consumers see social as a tool to express themselves and connect with others," he says. "Brands can absolutely play a successful role in that, but to expect consumers to buy when it was not their intention in signing on, is a stretch.
INT'L ECOMMERCE: When you combine the three for an ecommerce platform, how can it work? Well, that is what Hangzhou-based company Wansecheng is looking to accomplish. The website has the financial backing of some of the biggest investors in China today. Wsmall.com, established in 2009, is a website that combines the elements of ecommerce, entrepreneurship, B2B, B2C and social media into one web portal. The ecommerce platform aggregates more than 100,000 small merchants and vendors.
VOICE FIRST: During today’s keynote, Amazon showed how this could allow a developer to easily book a flight with just your voice (somehow, that’s becoming the canonical demo for all of these services). Lex is deeply integrated with Lambda and other AWS services and comes with a number of enterprise connectors, too.
BRAND: The Nokia consumer brand lives on as the badge on cheaper, entry-level “feature phones” sold mainly in Asia, India and Eastern Europe, though Microsoft invested little to market the name in recent years. Smartphones typically cost anywhere from 10 to 30 times as much as these basic phones, which sell for as little as $20.
BRAND: Richard Branson was ahead of his time, in that music, airlines, and cell phones didn’t seem to have much in common other than the disruptive viewpoint Virgin brought to each industry. However, Branson understood the need to unite these products – which lacked any similarity in offering – through visual and verbal cues.
ECOMMERCE: Broadly speaking, the larger bricks-and-mortar chains are the ones that are more effectively competing with Amazon, Adobe's Mickey Mericle told CNBC earlier this week. Over the five-day shopping stretch, those bigger chains grew their online sales at roughly 2½ times the rate of smaller players, Mericle said.
DATA: Gempler's team relies on a color-coded system called War Board that's synced with a satellite-based weather feed from NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. But FedEx also gets information from the National Weather Service and data, such as stats about lightning, from smaller data providers around the world.
ECOMMERCE: The road, however, isn’t going to get smoother. The brands with bigger pockets can afford playing the ‘discounting’ card, and will be forced to do so, even if it’s against their will! With sinking funds and educated customers, e-commerce players have found themselves at bay. The temperature will soar further with investors becoming more fastidious with their investments.
DATA: Apple already admitted that mapping data is a harder problem than the company first anticipated. You need to update maps all the time and fix mistakes as quickly as possible. Roads change and new buildings keep popping up. That’s why the company now works with thousands of employees in India and elsewhere to work on mapping data.
INNOVATION: Back in 2012, I did an in depth on-stage interview with Musk about the earliest days of his companies, how he had the courage to build a rocket even though he’d never built any physical product before, about his unusual friendship with Peter Thiel, and about the lowest time for him: 2008. “It looked like all three companies were going to die, and I was also going through a divorce,” he recalls.
Last Word: Was 2015 Amazon's Peak?
Amazon was 30.9% of 2016's Cyber Monday eCommerce rake but that may be the peak. Look at Best Buy, Target, and Kohl’s YoY trajectory (or comeback from digital disruption). Meanwhile, Best Buy is an amazing comeback story. They achieved a 21.3% growth in Cyber Monday’s market share. Their stock is at it’s highest point in five years. - @web