The Penguin that Stole Christmas

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Forget the Grinch stealing Christmas. This year, it is a cute little penguin called Monty that not only steals the show, but also the hearts and minds of the UK populace (and softies everywhere). British department store John Lewis has done it again, with a £1 million commercial (US$ 1.5m) that tells the story of […]

Can Retail Rescue a Dying City?

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in Advertising, Brand Strategy, Consumer Trends, Retail Marketing, retail strategy, Retail Trends, Shopper Marketing

Detroit is at once the American Dream and the American Nightmare. Built on automotive manufacturing, and turbo-charged by the construction of freeways in the 50’s and 60’s, the Motor City hit potholes in the 2000’s, with the Great Recession, a corrupt local government and a population decline of 25 percent in the first decade of […]

The World’s Most Unique Flagship

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Advertising, Brand Strategy, Consumer Trends, Design, Retail Marketing, retail strategy, Retail Trends

Flagship stores dot the major shopping thoroughfares of the big cities of the world. Often they are distinguished as much by their size as by their distinctiveness – they are monolithic versions of their mall-based cousins. Yes, they may have a feature or two – a massive digital screen here, a café there – that […]

Cashing in on Customer Laziness

Posted on 3 CommentsPosted in Advertising, Consumer Trends, Retail Data, Retail Marketing, Retail Trends, Shopper Marketing

The single most motivating notion in retail today can be boiled down to a single word – “Convenience.” I was reminded of that fact again early one day this week, when, dashing out the door with a slice of toast gripped between my teeth, I briefly caught a fascinating discussion on America’s NPR Morning Edition. […]

Here Come the Robots in Retail

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Advertising, Consumer Trends, Digital & Interactive, Retail Marketing, Retail Trends, Shopper Marketing, Store Design

Delivery drones are so 2013. The big news in technology in retail in 2014 and beyond is robots replacing humans. Starting just this week, right across the road from Apple in Cupertino, the Aloft hotel is testing robotic bellhops. As reported in The New York Times, the cute-as-a-button “Botlr” will deliver basic items from the […]

Shopping in Portlandia

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in Advertising, Consumer Trends, Retail Marketing, retail strategy, Retail Trends, Shopper Marketing

Hip. Seriously hip. Hilariously hip. Hipper than the hippest hipsters in Brooklyn, and that’s hyper hip. I’m talking about Portland, Oregon ‑ a compact, very livable, and very cool city in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. I visited Portland recently as part of the WPP Intel Futurecasting Summit and naturally snuck in time […]

The Future Shopper: They Live Among Us

Posted on 1 CommentPosted in Advertising, Consumer Trends, Digital & Interactive, Retail Data, Retail Marketing, retail strategy, Retail Trends

There is an alien creature that has arrived in our midst, with habits that would be completely unrecognizable to previous generations. And yet they are beginning to re-shape the landscape – tearing down old institutions and building up entirely new ones. I’m referring to the Future Shopper. And they live among us. (In fact, you […]