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Also from Ralph Jacobson...

Braintrust Resource

IBM Corporation
Smarter Food Supply
Technology is ensuring your food is getting "smarter". (url)

Links by Ralph

 
[Image of: Ralph Jacobson]

Ralph Jacobson

Global Consumer Products Industry Marketing Executive
IBM

This holiday is one that drives probably the most actual expenditures for Americans of any of the mid-year holidays, even more than Memorial Day. Also Americans are getting tired of the "slow" economic recovery and want to splurge a bit. Just look at auto sales — through the roof again...

I actually think there is a bifurcation of shopper sentiments happening as we speak. While there is a definite pulling away from brand affinity across many product categories with SOME consumer demographics, I can say that there are definitely some consumer groups that are true "Brand Enthusiasts" and will...

Some innovative retailers are truly making significant commitments to videos to enhance the shopping experience. One merchant made 2-5 minute videos on each of their top 50 best selling items to help shoppers decide on their purchases. I think this will only get better and more ubiquitous with time.

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So as much as I commented on the luxury brand article in today's blog here, that shoppers are willing to forgo key expenses in their budgets in order to purchase an expensive handbag, I also see that those very same middle class consumers appreciate a great deal on a...

Luxury brands are moving deeper into the lower income level shoppers more than ever before. Middle income consumers are investing in luxury brands before they secure budgets for more critical expenses. The proliferation of these brands in television programs helps drive the "need" for less-than-wealthy shoppers to crave them....

The focus needs to be on consumer value and brand affinity. The 80/20 rule has been the case literally for decades in supermarkets. I can remember doing a specific analysis on this as far back as the early '90s. Innovation is very much still required, however listening to your...

Surveys have always been and will always be required. Social media sentiment analyses are augmenting the insights, however direct feedback vehicles provide targeted, actionable opinions. The challenge is to ask the right questions, of course. The surveys need to be brief and actionable. Several questions often produce responses, however...

I love this. I visited a completely self-service store in Canada several years ago and it made me think of a store similar to this. The store I visited had walk-in coolers, self checkout, etc., and a few staff members on the floor to help customers in case of...

Like so many other categories of technology over the years (starting with Betamax vs. VHS, LOL), organizations and consumers have to adopt the clear winner before any dust settles in the market. In the case of payments, I'm really not concerned about specific "snags" with one provider or another....

Only 32 percent of families comparison shop? That is a bit surprising. This "holiday" is probably the most price-sensitive season, and having three kids in college myself I can definitely tell you we will be looking at prices. I'm not certain there will be any significant shift in marketing/merchandising...

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