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At Issue } essential reading

Millennials Trust User-Generated Content 50% More Than Other Media

Max Knoblauch
Apr 9, 2014

It seems as if millennials have avoided traditional media ever since they learned how to read. The results of new research by marketing startup Crowdtap and the global research company Ipsos shed new light on how the connected generation gets its news. When it comes to trust, it turns out, millennials almost always choose their peers over professionals.

The Food Porn Index Is Making Vegetables Look A Little Sexier

Adele Peters
Apr 9, 2014

A website called the Food Porn Index tracks the numbers: About 70% of #FoodPorn photos are junk food. That’s actually a slight improvement since the site first launched, which is part of the goal--the index was created by juice manufacturer Bolthouse Farms in an effort to remind Americans that vegetables can look just as sexy.

Nigeria’s GDP Just Doubled on Paper: What It Means in Practice

Bryan Mezue
Apr 9, 2014

The long overdue exercise (the last one was in 1990) nearly doubled the country’s economy pushing GDP up to $510bn from $270bn. There is a general consensus among economic analysts and commentators that the changes are merely cosmetic — they certainly do not affect the daily lives of most average Nigerians, and their timing might be politically motivated given the upcoming 2015 elections which are expected to be highly contested. However, from the perspective of managers and CEOs operating in Nigeria, there are some important implications.

Can Fashion See Beyond the Present to Find Its Future in Tech?

Rebecca Hiscott
Apr 9, 2014

For the companies and designers profiled in The Next Black, the minute-by-minute approach to designing and producing clothing is no longer sustainable. Instead, these particular industry pioneers are playing the long game — and that game involves tech.

Will Starbucks Alcohol "Infect" Other Products?

Roger Dooley
Apr 9, 2014

Starbucks continues to test alcohol sales in selected stores, and appears to be on the verge of rolling out beer and wine to more of its coffee shops. Their Starbucks Evenings concept adds selected adult beverages to an expanded food menu.

Fixing This One Big Problem Helped Turn Around Struggling Furniture Retailer West Elm

Danielle Sacks
Apr 7, 2014

Jim Brett was haunted by mud-colored squares. When he started as West Elm's president in 2010, he couldn't believe how a furniture store could have so many products designed with such little imagination. "I was like, 'Oh, my God, what's with the brown boxes?'" he says. "The whole brand was brown boxes made in China. There wasn't a curve in the store!" From couches to beds to dressers, much of the line consisted of low-slung angular block shapes covered in lifeless chocolate finishes. Even the West Elm logo was trapped inside a pair of overlapping squares.

BRANDALISM Limited Edition Spray Paint Cans

Antonio Brasko
Apr 7, 2014

Designer Anotnio Brasko recently hosted his own exhibition at The Seventh Letter Gallery in Los Angeles entitled BRANDALISM. The exhibit looked at the influence of street art, graffiti, and brands in fashion, in an experimental way. He created a set of original spray paint cans for a diverse mix of brands.

Tatas get cracking on their global branding exercise

Viveat Susan Pinto
Apr 7, 2014

In what could offer advertising agencies a coveted business, Tata group, the $100.09-billion Indian conglomerate that derives 58 per cent of its revenue from international markets, has initiated a massive branding exercise to position itself as a global giant. As part of this, the group's top brass has started meeting advertising agencies.

TrueCar Files for IPO as Former Hyundai CEO Krafcik Joins Board

Paul A. Eisenstein
Apr 7, 2014

Online automotive shopping site TrueCar.com has announced plans to go public – a significant turnaround for a service that some thought might not survive a series of legal challenges that forced the company to make some major changes to its business model over the last two years.

When Branding Is Too Good: A Cautionary Tale From New York's Citi Bike

Shaunacy Ferro
Apr 7, 2014

Why would any other company want to join Citi as a sponsor?

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