53 Marketing Trends found for Innovation / Other

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Obama Steps on the Fuel Economy Gas Pedal - Sets Target for 2025

Bottom Line: In a move with profound inplications for the US economy as a whole, the White House proposes new automobile fuel economy standards for car-makers that aim to double average gas mileage for passenger vehicles by 2025.

Says US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood: "Think about what this means. American families would fill up their cars every two weeks rather than every week." MarketingTomorrow also invites you to consider the effect that achieving such a goal would have on the US economy as a whole ... a substantial reduction in the cost of shipping goods to consumers and consumer outlets ... a concomitant rise in average family disposable incomes ... 

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2011 - 2025]

... and the beneficial knock-on effect on retailers' and manufacturers' bottom lines.

Proposed November 16, the rules mark the latest step in a lengthy campaign to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and oil consumption. They would build on the administration's ambitious standards that raise average gas consumption to 35.5 mpg over five years ending with the 2016 model year.

The latest standards would be phased-in starting with the 2017 model year.

When he disclosed his intent in July, President Barack Obama was flanked by executives from thirteen major automakers and the head of the United Auto Workers Union, signaling their broad support for the final proposal.

With exemptions and other provisions, actual mileage may be about 42 mpg for cars, with significantly lower requirements for light trucks, including minivans, SUVs and full-size pickup trucks.

The standards demand a substantial leap from the 2011 model-year average of 27.8 mpg and environmentalists praised the proposed new rules.

"These standards are the biggest single step any nation has taken to fight global warming," said Dan Becker, director of the Safe Climate Campaign at the Center for Auto Safety. "You will see most 2025 cars and light trucks getting the mileage of today's Prius and Ford Escape hybrid. Most of the changes will be under the hood."

Carmakers have backed both the current and the proposed standards, but the National Automobile Dealers Association [NADA] criticized the proposed rules for adding a claimed additional $3,000 to average vehicle prices by 2025.

Wails NADA: "This regulation gambles that millions of consumers will be able to afford thousands more for generally smaller, more expensive vehicles that may not meet their needs.  This policy is contrary to what most consumers are actually buying today, despite the wide availability of more fuel-efficient models."

But the administration asserts that the new fuel economy standards won't push Americans to drive smaller vehicles and pointed out that truck and SUV makers are already working to manufacture far more fuel-efficient versions of their current models.

Moreover, the new, combined sets of fuel economy standards will save Americans more than $1.7 trillion at the pump, according to administration estimates - equating to about $8,000 per vehicle. The standards also would reduce the nation's oil consumption by 2.2 million barrels a day — "enough to offset almost a quarter of the current level" of oil imports.

Another claimed benefit is that heat-trapping greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by 6 billion metric tons over the life of the programs, according to Federal estimates.

The new standards will be open for public comment for 60 days after being published in the Federal Register. The administration said the Environmental Agency and the Transportation Department will also hold public hearings nationwide.

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: LATimes.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5713

Corporate Culture is Key to Future Innovation, Reports Booz & Co

Bottom Line: Certain companies succeed in producing innovative new products and services year after year, thereby delivering superior financial results. Booz & Company's Annual Global Innovation 1000 study demonstrates the reason for this success.

So what is the magic formula for these corporate successes? Booz & Company's seventh annual study concludes that it's not a matter of how much they spend on research and development, but rather how they spend it. The report examines the key qualities extant within these companies that allow them to outperform the competition. According to the Booz 2011 Innovation 1000 there are two vital innovation qualities ...

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2011 onward]

... (1) Strategic alignment; (2) A corporate culture that supports innovation.

These qualities comprise three innovation strategies:

  • Need seeker
  • Market reader
  • Technology driver.

While no single strategy offers superior results, companies within each strategic category perform at very different levels.

And, no matter what a firm's innovation strategy may be — corporate culture is key to innovation success, and its impact on performance is measurable.

Specifically, the 44% of companies who reported that their innovation strategies are clearly aligned with their business goals —and that their cultures strongly support those innovation goals — delivered 33% higher enterprise value growth and 17% higher profit growth on five-year measures than those lacking such tight alignment.

Booz also asked innovation leaders participating in the survey to name the companies they considered to be the most innovative in the world.

For the second year in a row, Apple led the top ten firms, followed by Google and 3M.

This year, Facebook was named one of the world’s most innovative companies, entering the list at number 10.

In a comparison of the firms voted the 'ten most innovative' versus the 'top ten global R&D spenders', Booz found that over a 5-year period the former group outperformed the latter across three key financial metrics: Revenue growth; EBITDA as a percentage of revenue; and market cap growth.

Download "The Global Innovation 1000: Why Culture Is Key" (692kb, PDF)

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: Booz.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5694

Will Tomorrow's Marketers be Required to "Stand by Your Desks"?

Bottom Line: Following medical studies that link excessive sitting to increased obesity and more serious health risks, Silicon Valley executives are increasingly fulfilling their daily chores in a standing posture at specially designed desks.

Silicon Valley employees - among them staffers at Google and Facebook - have swapped their traditional sit-behind desks for specially designed stand-up versions, claiming they feel more comfortable and energized as a result. The erect trend is also spurred by medical reports warning that sitting for too long can lead to increased health risks. Workers with high desks also have the option ...

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2011 onward]

... of parking their derrières on special high stools as and when they feel the need to take the weight off their feet.

A study last year by the American Cancer Society found that women who sat more than six hours a day were 37% more likely to die prematurely than women who sat for less than three hours. The early-death rate for men was 18% higher. 

Also fuelling the trend to standing whilst working is a study released in January 2011 by the American College of Cardiology. It found increased mortality among people who sat longer at home than those who didn't.

Although there ar no official statistics as to the uptake of standing desks, anecdotal reports suggest Silicon Valley is embracing the stand-up trend.

Facebook managers report an upsurge in requests for standing desks, averaging five to eight a week and totalling up to 250 requests from its 2,000-plus workforce.

The company is also testing a treadmill station which enables a worker to walk or run while using a computer keyboard.

According to Google spokesman Jordan Newman: "Many employees ... opt for standing desks, and we offer them as part of our wellness program". However, Mr Newman was unable to cite the exact number of Google's high-deskers - a curious blind-spot for a company whose very existence is based on the numbers one and zero!

According to the WSJ report, one Facebookista, Greg Hoy - at 39 years a geriatric by Silcon Valley standards - asked for a standing desk seven months after joining the Facebook team. "I don't get the 3 o'clock slump anymore," he said. "I feel active all day long."

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: WSJ.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5664

US National Retailer Introduces Environmental Ratings for Cleaning Products

Austin, Texas-based national retail chain Whole Foods Markets is introducing Eco-Scale Rating System, a tiered standard for household cleaners that will  facilitate customers' understanding of which products are best for the environment. The new system, claims the retailer, will minimize the "widespread consumer confusion" extant even among its most green-savvy shoppers. Whole Foods also claims ...

[Estimated timeframe: Q2 2011 - onward]

... to be the first national retailer to launch such ratings for cleaners, assigning a color ranking of green, yellow, orange and red to products it evaluates.

In order to be stocked by Whole Foods, a product must achieve an orange rating at minimum. Red-rated products will no longer be sold by the chain.

In addition to ranking its own private-label brands, it is also evaluating such brands as Method, Better for Life, Ecover, and Greenshield. So far, thirty-four products have been rated.

Independent experts say such efforts have real appeal. 

"Consumers are getting more and more skeptical of product claims, and so third-party seals carry more weight," believes Cara Welch, PhD, vice-president of scientific and regulatory affairs at the Washington DC-based Natural Products Association

Speaking to Marketing Daily, Welch opined: "The Whole Foods standards have in general a pretty good reputation for clarifying complex issues."

Observers believe that other large retailers are likely to follow suit with their own customized ratings -- with the potential for widespread consumer confusion. 

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: MediaPost.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5554

A New Global Model for Agency Holding Companies?

Agency makeovers are ten a penny - more often than not a cosmetic hodge-podge, recurring with the regularity of Leap Year and the relevance of a poodle grooming parlour. But this is seemingly not the case with Interpublic's Mediabrands unit, which this week announced a major change in branding and structure that could prove a template for the global agency business as a whole. Essentially the revamp ... 

[Estimated timeframe: Q1 2011 onward]

... scraps a decades-old model which Interpublic dismisses as antiquated. Likewise the operating models of all other global agency networks.

In MarketingTomorrow's opinion, IPG is 100% right on this one, and its move will likely be replicated (in one guise or another) by rivals WPP Group, Omnicom, Publicis Groupe and Havas

These holding companies (and most large independent shops) are currently structured around four key geographic regions: North America; Latin America; Asia Pacific; and the risible non-region known as EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa.

MediaBrands is replacing these mothballed groupings with three economic clusters: G14, World Markets and North America. The change, effective immediately, applies to IPG's twin global media-shop networks, Universal McCann and Initiative.

The G14 cluster comprises the powerful 'old' economies plus the emerging tigers, specifically:

  • Canada
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • Egypt
  • France
  • Germany
  • India
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Russia
  • South Africa
  • United Kingdom

The World Markets group includes Austria, Belgium, Greece, the Middle East, Peru, Portugal, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey and Vietnam.

Jim Hytner, former president of EMEA, becomes president of the G14 division, while Mauricio Sabogal, ex-worldwide managing director at Initiative, becomes president of World Markets at Universal McCann and Initiative.

According to Mediabrands' global ceo, Matt Seiler, the move reflects a change in the way marketers do business. He claims it  is less about geography and more about priorities for growth, pinpointing the global locations where marketing investment will be most valuable.

Most marketers, Seiler argues, would say the UK and Japan have more in common than the UK and Portugal.

"The fact that one's in Asia and one's in Europe is completely irrelevant," Seiler says.

"There will always be a level within our organizations where there will be a common business reality that transcends the market differences. Our hope is to leapfrog where the other agency networks are in order to better serve our clients based on their actual needs, not just where those markets fall on [the] globe."

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: AdAge.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5535

EU Fearful of 'Innovations Gap' With US and Japan

According to European Union Research, Innovation and Science Commissioner Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, the technological gap between the EU, the US and Japan is widening fast, measured in terms of investment and registration of new patents. The innovative imbalance is highlighted by a new report that compares performance in areas such as research systems, funding for innovation, business investments and use of intellectual assets. According to Geoghegan-Quinn, the report "highlights the innovation emergency in Europe" and requires urgent improvement in such areas as ...

[Estimated timeframe: Q1 2011 onward]

... the generation of revenue from high-impact patents - specifically those that make significant returns for companies in global markets.

The EU also needs to improve the functioning of its internal market for protected knowledge, the Commission says.

Citing the new report Innovative Union Scoreboard 2010, commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn calls for improvements in generating revenue from high-impact patents, specifically those that make significant returns for companies in global markets.

The EU also needs to improve the functioning of its internal market for protected knowledge, the Commission urges. It points to the dynamism of Chinese firms in particular, enabling that nation to "continue rapidly to narrow its performance gap with the EU".

However, the Scoreboard report, published February 2, is not entirely downbeat, revealing that the EU is outperforming the US in public R&D spending and exports of knowledge-intensive services.

Given that translation costs make patents in the EU much more expensive than in the US, the EC last year backed a move to launch a simplified and cheaper European patent system.

Germany, the UK and several other countries want a fast-track deal on patents under the "enhanced co-operation" procedure. The mechanism enables a minimum of nine EU countries to drive through such a measure, even if it has not been agreed by the entire EU membership of twenty-seven nations.


All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: BBC.co.uk
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5488

Japan Cautious Over US-Backed Pacific Free Trade Bloc

The Japanese government may be cautious about the proposed US-driven multilateral Pacific free-trade accord - but the nation's major businesses are urging a speedy commitment. According to Hiromasa Yonekura, chairman of the Japan Business Federation, the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement in conjunction with the USA would enhance Japan's "strategic position" and contribute to the promotion of FTA talks between Japan, China and South Korea, as well as between Japan and the European Union.

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2010 - 2013]

Meantime, meeting in Yokohama on Wednesday foreign and trade ministers of Pacific-rim nations agreed to fend off protectionism by extending an existing ban on new trade barriers among member states by at least three years, until 2013.

The ministers, meeting for two days ahead of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation [APEC] summit starting Saturday, also affirmed the need to conclude stalled World Trade Organization talks on opening global markets by the end of 2011, as key elections are scheduled in major member states in 2012, a Japanese diplomat in Yokohama said.

APEC members are Australia, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Russia, Taiwan, the United States, and seven Association of Southeast Asian Nations members — Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: JapanTimes.co.jp
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5375

Murdoch's Ex-Lieutenant to Challenge Former Boss in Asia

The Asian media scene is on yellow alert for the mother of all battles. The battle for control of the region's massive pay-TV market, currently dominated by NewsCorporation's Star Group. Adding piquancy to the upcoming foray is that the upstart challenger to Murdochian supremancy is none other than the mogul's former lieutenant, NewsCorp's quondam president and chief operating officer Peter Chernin [left], in the eyes of many the real power behind Clan Murdoch's throne.

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2010 onward]

Chernin will be joined by Paul Aiello, who most recently served as ceo of Newscorp-controlled Star Group, the region's leading pay television broadcaster, who also oversaw the media conglomerate's investment in its joint ventures in India, China and Indonesia.

Chernin will serve as chairman of a new holding company, CA Media, and Aiello, co-founding shareholder of the fledgling company, will be chief executive officer.

Among the usual Wall Street suspects investing in CA Media are Allen & Company, Brookside Capital (an affiliate of Bain Capital), Gordon Crawford and Kimberly Querrey.

Headquartered in Hong Kong, CA Media will initially focus on China, India and Indonesia, where it will be involved in film and TV production, television networks, sports, education, advertising and digital media - an arena in which Star Group is currently pre-eminent.

There will be blood ...


All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: AdWeek.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5370

P&G Extends Search for New Product Development Partners

Procter & Gamble, the world's largest manufacturer of fast moving consumer goods, is looking to extend its parnterships with third parties in a bid to develop new consumer products. Its objective is to hike annual sales growth from its current level of around $1bn to at least $3bn by 2015.

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2010 - 2015]

According to Bob McDonald, ceo of the the planet's largest advertiser, he wants the company to accelerate its NPD-ventures with external partners. "We need bigger innovations, that create more value,” he told a recent meeting with companies and research institutions that work with P&G.

“We want to be the partner of choice ... we want you to come to us with your big ideas first,” he said.

The initiative, launched in 2001 by P&G's [then] legendary leader Alan G Lafley, led to such high-profile deals as the joint venture with rival consumer goods company Clorox in 2004, which created Glad brand ForceFlex rubbish bags. Its successful Olay Regenerist anti-ageing cream was developed with Sederma, a small French skin technology company, while its Swiffer cleaning products use technology licensed from Japan’s Uni-charm.

P&G now says that external partners are involved in around 60% of its product launches.

The Cincinatti giant's chief technology officer Bruce Brown says the new sales target represented an important shift to “value creation, against just measuring a number of connections”.

“What we really want to do now is say, ‘What are the biggest opportunities that we want to address, and are we looking outside to make the right corrections?” said Brown.

P&G’s current partners include Chinese web services company Alibaba, General Mills and ConAgra, as well as  research institutions like India’s Council for Scientific and Industry Research and the US government’s Los Alamos Defence Research Laboratory.


All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: FT.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5357

Could This New Format Save the Global Newspaper Industry?

Have two Russian entrepreneurs - father and son Alexander and Evgeny Lebedev - come up with a new format that could resuscitate the globe's ailing newspaper industry? Maybe. The London-based Russians, who own three UK newspapers - The Independent, the Independent on Sunday and the London Evening Standard - have developed a "distilled" version of the first title, naming it simply 'i'. Due to hit the newsstands nationwide on 26 October, 'i' targets readers who "have neither the time nor the energy to read full-sized newspapers". It will also be on offer as a paid-for iPad application.

[Estimated timeframe: Q4 2010 onward]

The Independent's editor-in-chief Simon Kelner, said the new title is aimed at readers “suffering from information overload, and [who] want a comprehensive digest of the news.

"All quality newspapers are terrific value for money at the moment; they’re packed full of ideas, expertise, fine writing, photography,” Kelner told the FT. “But why are circulations continuing to fall? There are lots of reasons but one of them is that it’s too rich a diet. Readers can’t get through it all, therefore they feel it doesn’t represent value for money, because they have to throw most of it away.”

Kelner professes lack of concern that the new title will cannibalise sales of The Independent, insisting that each will occupy a different segment of the marketplace. Moreover, oncosts will be limited, he claims, given that 'i' will simply “repurpose” the company’s existing resources.“It’s about finding a new audience without increasing our cost base.”

The parent title is also in line for a facelift and will boast a “new distinctive look and feel".

All data sources are attributed with links to the original insight. The insight is then summarised and, where appropriate, enhanced with additional information.

Source: FT.com
MTT insight URL: http://marketingtrendtracker.com/article.aspx?id=5345

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