Some companies are masters at influencing buying habits. Starbucks, for instance, has been at the helm of controlling the customer experience for a long time. From the in-store environment to the presence on social media, the company has been able to balance its image as a responsible coffee source and still nearly quadruple share prices in the last 5 years.
With the holidays just around the corner, this got me thinking about the issue of "frustration-free" packaging. Not only is complex wrapping simply no fun for the kids receiving gifts packaged in such a manner, the fact is it's a much larger issue for the most rapidly growing segment of our population -- older adults.
Publishers should dominate this service business; like Faber, they just need to start. Book production and retailing, whether by companies or individuals, is fully commoditized now also, so the key is to occupy the space held by, say, yoga instructors, dentists, psychotherapists, interior designers -- services for which you are as likely to pay more, to get a better job, than to pay less.
Like any craft, journalism, requires audience attention, appreciation and consideration -- akin to a handmade ceramic mug that can sit alongside a disposable paper cup, news can be authored by a Pulitzer prize wining journalist or a passerby at an event with a cell phone. Both have value but their objectives differ.
There are a group of people often overlooked in the fight against climate change and they can be one of our greatest allies as we figure out how to limit the damage from extreme weather, rising seas and threats to food security. They are the millions of indigenous people who live in the world's remaining forests. Often overlooked, ignored, marginalized and attacked, they stand at the heart of a global solution on climate change that all of us, whether we live in big cities or remote villages, can benefit from.
Ever missed out on a deal so crazy-good that you couldn't stop thinking about it for days? If you're like the rest of us, then your answer is probably yes. Missing good deals is standard because good deals tend to happen all the time, while we are always somehow at the wrong place, at the wrong time. Luckily, there's a fixer for that and it's called taking control.
Her name's Melissa Bachman. She kills wild animals on American TV for a living. Sometimes with a rifle, sometimes with bow and arrow. Then she killed a full-maned male lion, and posted a picture of herself, cradling her rifle, laughing triumphantly, while the once-magnificent lion sprawled dead at her feet. And all hell broke loose.
Startups often have to deal with one or all of three big issues: lack of capital, brand recognition and product penetration. While these are real threats and pose the biggest risk to success, startups often have advantages that cannot be found in large, established companies. Educating talent on these benefits helps them make an informed decision between the bright lights of the behemoth and the siren's call of the startup. So, what exactly are these benefits?
The story and process behind a product is every bit as important as the product itself. The intangibility of what went into what you're buying gives it life, identity and value. Something purchased from Amazon isn't just "less expensive," but carries the entrepreneurial history of Jeff Bezos, the marvel of the company's state-of-the-art robotic selection and distribution system, and so on.
Before you start lighting up those pitchforks and come after us marketers with a mix of mass hysteria and moral panic, take a look at your own online behavior and ask yourself, which scenario you prefer? Go to Amazon and start shopping (presuming you have been there before), and ask yourself, "what is the experience like?"
Tax arbitrage, or moving operations and tax liabilities to low-cost jurisdictions, has been a game played by rich people and multinationals for years. But the game is ending finally. This will have implications in terms of government revenues to pay for social services but will also have a negative impact on the profits and share prices of giants such as Google, Amazon and virtually every multinational that's a household name.