Weekly Recap - December 14, 2018

Woman using a mobile phone.

Answer Me

When consumers post comments, they expect a response. In a recent survey of 532 U.S. social media users, most participants expected companies to use social media to respond to consumers' social media comments about the brand. And quickly. Most (76%) expected companies to respond to comments on social media, and 83% expected the responses to appear within one day (Clutch.co, 1 November 2018).

+Millennials have even higher expectations. 80% expected brands to use social media to respond to comments, 90% within one day. Almost half expected brands to respond within an hour. What's at stake? Only reputation. 45% of participants said they would "view a brand more positively if it responded to negative comments on social media," and 72% were likely to recommend a company if they had enjoyed a positive social media experience with it.

Mobile Missteps

Mobile-paying Millennials are more reckless with their personal finances. American Millennials who use their phones to make payments are more likely to misstep, financially, than their peers who don't make mobile payments, per a recent study by George Washington University School of Business (Qz.com, 9 November 2019). Millennial mobile payers are more likely to use financial products such as bank accounts, credit cards and retirement accounts, but they're also "more likely to overdraw their checking accounts, use credit cards expensively, borrow through alternative financial services, and withdraw from their retirement accounts," according to the study report.

+Maybe mobile makes it too easy to spend? "In the data we do not have information about what explains that behavior but making payments easy and mindless may induce people to spend more," said professor Annamaria Lusardi, the study's lead author. 25% of Millennials who use their phones to track spending had overdrawn their checking accounts — versus 20% of those who don't track their spending via smartphone. Young depositors need personal finance education STAT.

Get Physical

Millennials shop online but they also enjoy physical stores. Millennials weren't supposed to shop at brick and mortar stores, and now they're being credited for reviving them. They like to toggle between online and IRL, hunting bargains and being social.

+Nearly half (48%) of Millennials shop in brick-and-mortar stores at least once a week, according to a Euclid survey (SG.Finance.Yahoo.com, 18 November 2018). They are also more likely than either Gen Xers or Boomers to hit the malls on Black Friday. And while they make 54% of their holiday purchases online, when Cyber Monday rolls around Millennials are more likely than other gens to shop in-store.

Media In 2019

What marketers can expect in 2019: Media consumption. As we near the end of the year, we begin to question the year to come. What is next? What can we do to prepare? Specifically, where is media going in 2019?

Tele No

Online patient portals: Why aren't patients using them? A recent report from researchers at the University of Michigan School of Public Health revealed that 63% of patients surveyed were not using online patient portals. With 90% of health care organizations offering portal access to their patients, why are so many patients ignoring them?

What marketers can expect in 2019: Media consumption.

Media consumption in 2019

As we near the end of the year, we begin to question the year to come. What is next? What can we do to prepare? Specifically, where is media going in 2019?

For a while there, users were engaging in shared experiences, and while that is still very accurate, media consumption is shifting into more curated and connected content for consumers. Ever notice the "Recommended For You" feature on Instagram...their algorithms understand our every move, like, share, view and want to provide more carefully selected content like that to us.

So, what is next for media consumption in 2019? Let's take a look:

  • Digital technology utilization has reached its expected plateau. According to Pew Research Center, there was little to no growth from 2016 to 2018 in terms of U.S. consumers using their smart devices: cellphones, tablets, etc. The slowdown in growth correlates to the fact that almost everyone has some sort of smart device. This isn't indicative of media usage, however. Users are now more aware of their time spent on device and in app...
  • Time spent on device and in-app makes consumers highly aware of their consumption. Smartphones now allow you to receive a weekly update of your device usage. Even Facebook and Instagram are offering a tracking tool to users. You can set the amount of time per day you would prefer to spend on social platforms and receive notifications when you have reached that threshold.
  • Audio and video streaming services are still rising. While video killed the radio star, streaming services are killing both their predecessors. According to Gartner Iconoculture, 55 percent of U.S. households now subscribe to at least one video-streaming service (up from 10 percent in 2009). In addition, the average subscriber pays for three different services, bringing the industry nearly $2.1 billion in revenue per month. Tired of ads? Try Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Music or even Amazon Music Unlimited. While the latter options are still figuring out their audiences, Spotify and Apple Music are leading the streaming ship.
  • Twitter and Snapchat are on their way out. (Well sort of.) The two social platforms have seen a steady decline in users in 2018 and we anticipate that will continue in 2019. In efforts to redesign the user interface, Snapchat appeared to fail quite miserably, leading to several unhappy users. So much so, the platform saw a 15 percent stock price drop within the first quarter (yikes!). And according to Bloomberg, Twitter lost nearly one million users in the second quarter of this year.
  • YouTube's recommended content causes users to stay in platform longer. Ever watch a YouTube video and then realize it's a half hour later and you've watched too many cooking recipes, makeup tutorials, reaction videos or fail compilations? (Cue nervous laughter. Yeah, me neither.) Today, users are engaging in YouTube videos for more than just entertainment purposes. According to Pew Research Center, nearly 50 percent of users watch YouTube videos for how-to related content, while 13 percent find the platform informative in understanding world events. In addition, due to YouTube's algorithm, users are staying on the platform even longer than anticipated. The algorithm encourages users to watch "Recommended Content" based on videos they have watched previously, with nearly 81 percent of YouTube viewers clicking on the recommended content. (Okay, one more "animals doing cute things" video and then we will do something else.)

What else can marketers expect from 2019? Read up on the latest in:

Gen Z gets real about marketing.

Gen Z gets real about marketing.

The post Millennial generation Gen Z (aka Gen We), born between 1995 and 2016, makes up over 20 percent of the current U.S. population. So while Gen Z may not be your prime target now, they soon will be. By 2020 Gen Z is set to be the largest generation of consumers, and their spending power already equates to over $140 billion.

I can help. I'm an 18-year-old Gen Zer about to start my first year of college. I reached out to my peers to gather insights to help marketers like you get a better handle on how to connect with Gen Z. I asked about shopping habits, money and preferred social and media channels. I also consulted articles by the Huffington Post and Salesforce for third-party research and trends that influence Gen Z.

Gen Z is not be confused with Millennials

Though older Gen Zers are close in age with young Millennials, there are important key differences to note in the way Gen Z behaves as compared to Millennials. For starters, here are four ways Gen Z differs from Millennials:

Shopping. Though we may be in a digital age, Gen Z actually prefers to shop in store as opposed to Millennials who prefer the simplicity of shopping online. 68 percent of Gen Z surveyed said that they would rather shop in store. That means retail marketers should optimize the in-store experience, providing offers to excite and engage Gen Z.

Money. Gen Z grew up during the Great Recession. They watched the economy crash and many likely watched their parents struggle during this time. This has led Gen Z to be money savvy and conscious of what they spend and where they're spending it. In contrast Millennials tend to care more about the experience of buying the product and less concerned about the cost of it, according to an article by the Huffington Post. So, grab the attention of Gen Z by highlighting deals and steals.

Authenticity. Of course Millennials want brands to be authentic, but Gen Z requires it. The brands that do the best with Gen Z are those that are transparent about their products. How can you be authentic in the eyes of Gen Z?  Show real people using real products. Forget the photo shoots and ditch Photoshop. Capture the raw beauty of life through natural photos. Make Gen Z feel as if they can achieve what's in the photo.

Independence. Whereas Millennials will rage over the hottest brands, Gen Z will not be defined by any one brand. They want a variety of brands and items that allow them to capture their own personality.

Survey says...

Gen Z is always connected. Whether through smartphone, laptop, or even gaming device, we live in a digital age and Gen Z is all about it. When 25 teens (ages 12-18) were asked, 100 percent said that they regularly use their smartphone, and 48 percent reported that they use their phones for 4+ hours a day.

Gen Z

Gen Z

Connectivity is key. Gen Z has major FOMO (fear of missing out) and social media has become there way of always being present.

Gen Z has no time to waste. Long ads and slow load time are not worth the wait.

Gen Z

The best social platform to market to Gen Z


Fifty-two percent of Gen Zers say that the social media platform that they spend the most time on is Instagram.

Gen Z

On top of that 84 percent of Gen Z follows a brand or company on Instagram.

Gen Z

For more on Gen Z/Gen We, read Gen We expects more from brands on social media.

Weekly Recap - August 17, 2018

Not all social media is created equal, and not everyone trusts all social media either. Brands are using Instagram stars to market their products to the masses. Stay on top of the ever changing world of media and check out 14 predictions for things to come. Sit back, relax, and let the car do the driving for you.


How consumers rank Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube on privacy, fake news, content relevance, safety, and sharing. In fact, in a new Business Insider Intelligence survey of more than 1,300 global consumers, over half (54%) said that fake news and scams were "extremely impactful" or "very impactful" on their decision to engage with ads and sponsored content. For businesses, this distrust has financial ramifications. It's no longer enough to craft a strong message; brands, marketers, and social platforms need to focus their energy on getting it to consumers in an environment where they are most receptive.

Influencer marketing is booming among ever-younger gens. Some savvy consumers may be immune to the growing army of online stars shilling products and services on social media. But influencers and brands remain a match made in marketing heaven. Once a low-cost alternative to traditional celeb endorsements, influencer marketing has morphed into a booming business expected to hit the $10 billion mark by 2020, according to Adweek projections (NYTimes.com, 15 July 2018).

14 predictions for the future of media. Henry Blodget opened the latest sold-out IGNITION conference with a presentation entitled 14 Things You'll Want to Know About The Future of Media. And he should know...Blodget is co-founder, CEO, and editor-in-chief of Business Insider, one of the most-read business and tech news sites in the world with more than 80 million visitors a month worldwide. The presentation was put together with the help of the team at Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. Here are some of the key takeaways:

Meanwhile, back at the RANCH

How autonomous vehicles are driving the future of advertising. The year is 2021. Autonomous vehicles now dominate the roads. Gone are the days of keeping your eyes on the pavement, the cars in front of you, the billboards on your route to work. We live in the future. And self-driving cars make it possible for you to disconnect from reality while you're on the move.


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Healthcare Checkup - June 2018

Featuring a nurse in your new ad campaign may just break through. As would sponsoring a wellness festival. Baking and board games resonate creatively with Gen We. And from Gen We to Matures, people are dropping mobile e-shopping. Check up on this and more.


Nurses: vital in the hospital, invisible in the media. Gallop polls indicate nurses are the most trusted profession. So why are they so under-represented in the media?

Wellness festivals: It's what health junkies rave. Multi-day yoga, hiking, massages, and other well-being experiences beat out music festivals for the growing number of health junkies.


Gen We and the redefinition of creativity. When you hear the word, 'creativity', what do you think? Art, drama, music, creative writing? Gen We says there's much more.

Everything's mobile, so why are more shoppers using computers? Mobile e-purchasing dropped from 43% to 36% over the past 2 years and not just among Boomers and Matures. Learn why keeping cross-screen in the forefront is key to the consumer experience.


Answers to 3 frequently asked telehealth questions. Get ready-to-use Advisory Board slides on the latest telehealth trends for 2018.

3 affordable types of videos to boost your marketing. 85% of consumers say they'd like to see even more brand-centric videos. Carve out some space in your budget for livestreams, interview pieces and helpful how-tos.


For more inspiration, read our Key takeaways from the Marketing & Physician Strategies Summit.

Weekly Recap - June 8, 2018

As the rumblings around digital addiction escalate, other trends are emerging as well – like digital wellbeing. Mistakes happen at every business. It's how the business responds to mistakes that makes all the difference to the customer. The remote working movement is hotter than ever. Now, Vermont wants a piece of the action. Yes, Vermont. Online shopping is on the rise, but more consumers are opting to shop from a computer than a phone. And no, it's not an age thing.


Apple unveils a new set of ‘digital wellness' features. The Fruit is setting a new tone for the tech industry with its upcoming version of iOS software. Check out the features that could help you better manage screen time.

How to create a remarkable experience without pulling teeth. In any industry, businesses must understand their customers' expectations before designing a customer experience. It doesn't take much to keep customers happy. Here's what your business can do to keep your customers smiling.

Vermont wants to pay you $10,000 to move there and work. The state is trying to attract new residents with a clever campaign aimed at the remote-working movement. Here's what you need to know about the new program.

Meanwhile, back at the RANCH

Everything's mobile, so why are more shoppers using computers? The trend crosses generational cohorts, with even the youngest generations using computers to buy. These studies emphasize the importance of always thinking cross-screen to ensure the optimum consumer experience.

THE Topic of conversation

Authenticity. Discover which brands are getting real and how to market authenticity across genders, generations and ethnic groups. Download our free whitepaper "3 Rules to Creating an Authentic Brand."


Like what you see? Share the Brogan Recap.

Everything's mobile, so why are more shoppers using computers?

Picture of a consumer shopping online by Pixnio.com.

More people are shopping online. And people who shop online are shifting more purchases online. This surprises no one.

What was once clandestine consumption, is now smiling at us from the Amazon Prime boxes that pepper every other porch on the block. It's piled high in apartment complex mailrooms, demanding more square footage. It's the personal shoppers bullying their wide-load grocery carts through the store to fill your order before you arrive at curb side pickup.

According to an NPR/Marist poll, nearly two-thirds of U.S. consumers and 92 percent of online shoppers say they've purchased something on Amazon. They shop online for the convenience ("You can shop anytime day or night"), for the ease ("It's easier to find the item you are looking for"), for the selection, for the solitude ("You can avoid lines and people") and for other reasons big ("It's cheaper") and small ("Recommendations by the online retailer are available").

Again, not terribly surprising. But what is surprising is how consumers are opting to shop online. Retailers take note. That oft-featured money shot of a busy-yet-perfectly coifed and lipsticked businesswoman/wife/mom reaching for her phone to place an online order that will heroically save her from traffic/lines/people, is trending weary. Cue the desktop and tablets.

A growing number of North Americans are using a computer rather than phone to shop online. According to a recent Forrester study, e-commerce sales grew 14 percent between 2016 and 2018. But during the same period, the volume of e-purchases made with a mobile device, as a percentage of all e-commerce sales, dropped from 43 percent to 36 percent. The percentage using their phone to make a purchase at least weekly fell from 21 percent to 16 percent.

Participants who preferred to use a computer to shop online cited ease of shopping (51 percent), being "more used to their computer" (46 percent) and mobile screens being too small (30 percent), according to research by Gartner Iconoculture.

It's not an age thing. Yes, Boomers and Matures appreciate larger screens but so does Gen We. At least a third of Gen We students studied typically use computers, often tablets, to shop online.

Said Forrester vice president and principal analyst Sucharita Kodali, "There are few ‘no PC' households in the U.S. And we don't anticipate that changing as young children are becoming accustomed to larger — not smaller! — screens."

These studies emphasize the importance of always thinking cross-screen to ensure the optimum consumer experience. This is especially true in the retail space where retargeting can be used to follow consumers across devices and compel purchase.

6 insights marketers should know from Iconosphere 2018.

"Be brave in this new world," proposed Kate Muhl, CEB Iconoculture's Principal Advisor to a room full of brand strategists and advertisers. This quickly became the theme for the two-day Iconosphere 2018 conference that dove deep into consumer and generational insights as well as trends spanning across different verticals.

Brands like Chanel, Kraft Foods Inc., Microsoft and many more, as well as agency partners and researchers were all in attendance to gain further market insight. From healthcare to finance, big tech to experiential marketing, generational behaviors to consumer outlook; a lot was covered and a lot was learned.

In case you missed it, here are six things marketers should know for 2018:

  1. Consumers are feeling disconnected. In a recent CEB Iconoculture survey, it was found that 69 percent of consumers believe that the political and social climate is worse today than it was before the 2016 election, more than 1 in 4 consumers feel disconnected with the world they live in, and 59 percent of Americans believe this is the lowest point in our nation's history that they can remember. That said, consumers are placing higher value on secure comfort and their striving pursuits.

  2. Google is our god. Google knows everything. When you're worried about health. Finances. When you're about to get engaged. Buy a house. Buy that dress. Or even change jobs. Google knows what you're doing. So, if you're not marketing on Google, perhaps you should start.

  3. Culture is not up for grabs. With recent campaigns appropriating and not appreciating the cultures they are deriving inspiration from, multicultural consumers are taking note and no longer engaging with the brands.

  4. Creativity is getting a facelift. Gen We is redefining what it means to be creative. This digitally native and diverse cohort is telling anyone who's willing to listen that everything is creative (sports, music, relationships, art, social media, writing, video games), anything is a canvas (both on and offline) and it is all about the creative process, not necessarily the end product.

  5. Consumers have a wandering eye. Yes, some are loyal. But, they cheat on brands in order to better understand themselves. They experiment with new products and new brands and services to learn new facts about themselves. Looking for a loyal consumer? It's all about the consumer mindset and their involvement level with specific products. The higher the involvement, the more loyal they are.

  6. Experiential marketing is all about interactivity, not KPIs. Consumers' attention span went from 12 seconds to a mere eight seconds in the past few years. They're desensitized to media and they're overloaded. Looking to get back into their attention span? Try experiential marketing. But keep in mind, there are no standard KPIs to track this approach. It is all about the consumer and their interactivity with the branded experience. A successful campaign would include:

    • Sensory engagement – how to isolate and engage different senses
    • Accessibility – how many people participate in the experience itself
    • Novelty – how your brand is being new while also authentic
    • Shareability – the way the brand facilitates sharing before and after the event
    • Tech satisfaction – what new tech trends are assisting your customer
    • Local relevance – how to highlight specificity

Interested in how last year stacked up? Indulge in a refresher and check out the top six takeaways from Iconosphere 2017.

Weekly Recap - March 16, 2018

Let's talk tech. Google takes assistance to the next level with a fun home. Fast-food brands vs. fast-casual restaurants. Ever dream about being the star of your own Super Mario game? Well, now you can with a new stunt from Nike. Starting your spring cleaning? Don't forget to spruce up your digital space.


Google gets creative for the 2018 SXSW Conference. Check out how they turned an Austin house into a giant, connected fun home to promote Google Assistant.

5 simple steps for smart sharing and enhancing cybersecurity. See how some digital spring cleaning could protect you from cyber-attacks.

Fast-food chains are ramping up their digital game. But not all apps are created equal. One big burger chain has even bigger plans for its mobile app.

Break a sweat, or beat your high score? No need to choose, thanks to Nike. Shoppers can now test-run sneakers on a treadmill hooked up to a video game.

Meanwhile, back at the RANCH

Marketing Madness by the Numbers. Sorry, we can't help you out with your NCAA basketball bracket. But we do have some data on who's spending the big bucks on marketing for the tournament.

THE Topic of conversation

Authenticity. Discover which brands are getting real and how to market authenticity across genders, generations and ethnic groups. Download our free whitepaper "3 Rules to Creating an Authentic Brand."


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Marketing madness by the numbers.

Marketing madness by the numbers.

Sorry, we can't help you out with your NCAA basketball bracket - you'll have to guess those stats for yourself. But we do have some data on who's spending the big bucks on marketing for the tournament.

The NCAA Basketball Tournament accounts for the second-highest advertising investment of the year, behind only the NFL Playoffs and the Big Game (the names M. Madness and S. Bowl are copyrighted, but you know the games we're talking about). Last year advertisers spent more than $1.2 billion – yes, billion with a B – wooing basketball fans. Because these are college teams, the audience skews a little younger for this tourney than for the NFL, so marketers keen on grabbing the younger audience are spending big.

Marketing for all the college basketball hoopla is different than marketing for the NFL extravaganza. Here's why: The NCAA Tournament has 68 teams – the NFL Playoffs, only 12. NCAA plays 67 games, vs. only 11 for the NFL. Plus those 67 games are played over less than 3 weeks; the NFL gets a month to play their 11. So the madness is more intense. If a marketer runs ads consistently throughout the tournament, viewers will see them A LOT – so ads that are a tad annoying during the round of 16 are going to be truly maddening by the last four (that song about baby-back ribs comes to mind).

Who's mad enough to spend all this money on the tournament? These five industries are the top spenders:

  1. Automotive. Yes, Detroit is shelling out a lot of money to have their cars cruise through your beer-and-bathroom break. In 2014, GMC spent over $83 million on the tournament. Buick is a corporate sponsor of the NCAA.
  2. Telecommunciations. Cell phone and TV services like AT&T, Sprint and Dish Network are looking to target the younger demographic (their best customers).
  3. Restaurants. Fast-food chains like Taco Bell and Burger King are right up center court for this audience, and they'll be making themselves heard. But the real King of madness marketing is Buffalo Wild Wings. They're pulling out all the stops this year with ticket giveaways, promotional glassware, bonus points for rewards members, and of course, their usual humorous TV ads.
  4. Financial Services. What comes after the March insanity? April anxiety: it's tax time. What better time for the financial services industry to grab a big audience? Expect to see ads from tax preparers, investment advisors and big banks.
  5. Insurance. Most people choose an insurer when they're young and stick with it, so companies like Allstate and State Farm look to tournament advertising as a great way to grab college students about to enter the "real world." They'll spend close to $100 million during the March event.

Ready to watch a lot of money get spent? Grab a bag of chips and a plate of wings and watch the advertisers duke it out. Oh, and some basketball, too.

Weekly Recap - February 23, 2018

Amazon enters the healthcare arena. What does this mean for healthcare providers and consumers? The Best Feb Ever. For NBCUniversal, that is. Another Amazon attack. Delivery services have a new competitor.


Amazon, Berkshire and JP Morgan Chase might disrupt the healthcare industry. Amazon knows personalization better than any brand. Could this controversial move bring unprecedented personalization to healthcare?

NBC Sports makes $1.4 billion in 22 days thanks to the Super Bowl and Winter Olympics. A win-win situation. Here's how NBC's Super-Sized Ad Model helped the company avoid last year's slow market and helped advertisers meet their key marketing objectives.

Amazon is set to take on FedEx and UPS. Shipping with Amazon. The service will start with third-party sellers on its site and then expand.

Meanwhile, back at the RANCH

Is your sender reputation keeping your emails out of inboxes? One in five commercial emails never make it to the inbox. Usually, this is due to a poor score given to you by email service providers. Don't miss these tips for bumping your score.

Is being a tech native healthful or harmful? Being the tech generation definitely has its health benefits—hyper awareness, incredible access and greater control. But all that information and connectivity can come with some unhealthy side effects...

THE Topic of conversation

Authenticity. Discover which brands are getting real and how to market authenticity across genders, generations and ethnic groups. Download our free whitepaper "3 Rules to Creating an Authentic Brand."


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Weekly Recap - February 9, 2018

Did your favorites make the list? Adweek's top Super Bowl ads. As always, engagement is key. But many Super Bowl marketers forget about mobile. Again, let's talk about engagement. This time on Instagram.


The 5 best ads of Super Bowl LII. All four Tide spots topped the list. Check out other hilarious spots from Amazon, the NFL and more.

Super Bowl marketers still struggle to think beyond the hashtag. Mobile means engagement. Kraft was on the right track, but most advertisers missed the mark.

How Leo Burnett uses Instagram to showcase its employees. A Day in the Life. For this agency, Instagram has served as a great recruiting tool and engagement opportunity among employees, alumni and others in the creative community.

Meanwhile, back at the RANCH

5 Super Bowl LLI ads everyone is talking about. From Justin Timberlake's "Bai, Bai, Bai" commercial from last year, to owning the halftime show last night, viewers were certainly in for an entertaining evening. What ads scored? Let's run a play-by-play.

Gen We is earning allowance - and saving it too. Allowance is still a thing but it's rarely a handout these days. Seventy percent of U.S. parents gave their kids an average weekly allowance in exchange for routine chores, like emptying the dishwasher and doing laundry.

THE Topic of conversation

Instagram. Learn how your business can use Instagram to build brand awareness and increase engagement. Download our free whitepaper "Why your business should be marketing on Instagram."


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