Sales of Private Brands Surge in Mass Retail Channel

Store brands are proving to be a powerful weapon for mass merchandisers, warehouse club stores and dollar stores as they compete against both Amazon and other brick-and-mortar retailers. An analysis of the latest Nielsen data reveals that private label dollar volume in the mass retail channel rose 41% over the last five years, compared to a gain of only 7.4% for national brands. The growth lead is even more pronounced when it comes to units, according to Nielsen, whose data showed that store brands volume climbed by 33.2%, while the national brands inched ahead by less than 1%.
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Crossmedia Takes The High Ground, Launches Cannabis Media Division

New York-based independent media agency Crossmedia Inc. today announced a new unit, “XM Grows,” focusing on the burgeoning legal cannabis marketplace. The new unit is a collaboration with marketing consultancy Dirt Worldwide and data management firm Nacci, and will focus on leveraging data-driven, cross-channel communications planning with outcome-based media activation driven by best in class attribution solutions, including direct-to-consumer marketing channels.
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The timeless appeal of print gives it a future digital media can’t touch (rollandinc.com blog)

Print’s unique qualities – physical presence, visual impact, reader-friendliness – remain unmatched. Nothing competes with the tactile pleasure of thumbing through a well-printed magazine, or the comfort of curling up with a great book. Serious readers, like college students, concentrate best with print. Data-driven direct marketers rely on impactful print materials for strong ROI, knowing consumers understand what they read in print better than that read on screen. And recycled post-consumer paper adds to print’s appeal, aligned with society’s growing embrace of environmental responsibility. Building on these strengths, forward-minded printers, publishers and marketers are leveraging new technologies and fresh ideas to create attractive new print markets and products. Print materials and electronic media are best seen as complements. One of many examples is the nearly 15 percent increase in sales of paper maps and atlases in the United States in 2018, at a time when just about everyone navigates using GPS, Google Maps or Waze. Even the best apps just can’t beat a paper map for big-picture understanding of a trip to the countryside or another country. Click Read More bellow for additional information.
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3 Reasons Why Fashion Brands Still Advertise in Print (mediapost.com)

Spending by fashion brands on print advertising has plunged in the past decade and shows no sign of rebounding before the next recession brings more crushing loss and despair. Wait, it gets better. Brands are still finding reasons to buy ads in magazines, even as digital rivals like Instagram transform the fashion industry, as Business of Fashion columnist Amy Odell explains in a recent post. Those reasons include the failure of digital media to provide an adequate substitute for print, the cultural credibility of magazine brands and the undervaluing of digital platforms by publishers themselves. That’s reason for hope among the major secular shifts in consumer habits. Smartphone-happy Americans spent 3.3% of their media consumption time on print products, compared with 44.4% on digital media, Odell notes. Click Read More bellow for additional information.
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Why Subscription Boxes Are Here to Stay (forbes.com)

Nearly a decade after the first subscription box services hit the doorsteps of consumers, retailers are still working to get their heads around the significance of the industry’s rapid growth. It seems there is very little we cannot have delivered to our doors in a surprise-like box, as the industry has ballooned well beyond clothing and razors to delivering everything from dog treats to toys, plants, and even crystals, directly to consumers. According to a recent Fast Company article, there were 3,500 subscription box services as of October of last year, an increase of 40% from the year before. While subscription boxes are still a small slice of the overall retail industry, a growing number of consumers are planning to test drive a few. First Insight’s recent survey on subscription boxes, which was featured in USA Today, showed that 25% of respondents (both men and women combined) are currently receiving a subscription box, and another 32% of respondents plan to subscribe in the next six months. Click Read More bellow for additional information.
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Simply the best… better than all the rest

What’s the favourite new medium for the world’s biggest digital brands? The answer may surprise you: print media. Two more “digital first” companies have just launched brand extension magazines this week. Bumble (the networking and dating app) and Netflix have become the latest in a long line of distinguished companies to understand that print is a unique tool if you want to connect directly with your key audience in a profound way. But what does this tell us about today’s media world and the wider future of multi-channel consumption, both for upcoming and legacy companies? For those of you short of time, let us summarise what magazines offer: real, deep connection to real people. "I dispute the conventional wisdom that print is dead." Click Read More bellow for additional information
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Aiming To Make Earth Day Global Holiday, North Face To Close Stores On April 22 (mediapost.com)

On Earth Day, North Face will close all of its 113 stores in the U.S. and Canada — along with its corporate office — so employees and customers can spend time outdoors. Ahead of next Monday, North Face, partnered with 15 other organizations, has launched a global campaign to make the day an official holiday around the world. “When people take time to appreciate Earth, they feel more connected to it and are more likely to protect it,” the petition states. “We believe love for our planet comes from having the freedom to explore it, and that Earth Day should be recognized as a national holiday everywhere.” Although you have to go online to sign the petition via the North Face website or Change.org, the company takes a dim view of the screen-obsessed Internet freak. “This behavior is hindering our ability to discover and make meaningful connections in the real world,” the petition says. Click Read More bellow for additional information.
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Publicis Groupe Agrees To Acquire Epsilon For $4.4 Billion

Publicis Groupe has struck a deal to acquire data-driven marketing agency Epsilon for $4.4 billion. Epsilon is a major player in people-based precision marketing in North America, with approximately 9,000 employees, including 3,700 data scientists and 2,000 Bangalore-based technology delivery members. Last year the company generated $1.9 billion of net revenue,97% in the U.S. With Epsilon at the core, Publicis claims it will now become the first player to offer a "unique end-to-end service" that will result in enhanced growth of its existing businesses while opening up new opportunities. Click Read More bellow for additional information.
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‘Data Everywhere’ is Presented as Both Challenge and Opportunity at Inkjet Summit (piworld.com)

In an opening keynote on April 8 at the seventh annual Inkjet Summit, conference chair Marco Boer predicted that soon, data preparation would claim a greater share of labor and value in print production than all the other steps in the process. The following day, a panel discussion titled, "Data Everywhere ... How Do I Get in the Game?" suggested that the forecast may be coming true even sooner than expected. Moderator Elizabeth Gooding (Inkjet Insights) affirmed that data is indeed everywhere and that its applications aren't limited to transactional print. It is being embedded in print of many different types to enhance security, for example, or to trigger omnichannel experiences when people scan printed codes. Click Read More below for additional detail.
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With Millennials In Mind, Outdoor Retailer REI Doubles Down On Rentals And Used Gear Sales

In the latest sign that sustainability is the retail industry’s big trend, specialty outdoor gear retailer REI is “significantly” expanding its rental and used gear sales programs and trade-in options. While REI, known for its co-op membership model, has historically hosted in-store “garage” sales a few times a year to resell gently used products that customers have returned, the new initiative is taking that up several notches, with used product sales now to be held year-round both in stores and online, REI interim president and CEO Eric Artz said. The company, which has 154 stores in 35 states and D.C., also more than doubled its rental program to 85 locations in December. It plans to roll out the rental service to 115 stores this year and include items such as snowshoes, skis, snowboards and fully equipped camping and backpacking kits. Click Read More below for additional detail.
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