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Will deliveries fly to your door?

Amazon have scored plenty of headlines with its drone delivery story, Prime Air. For the uninterested, Amazon have said they’ll be able to shorten delivery times by despatching your goods via drones rather than delivering via the postal system in the future. It’s not as fanciful as it might sound. Flirtey  are set to pull […]

Connectivity is partly what’s holding us back

Dido Harding, CEO of TalkTalk wrote a piece in the Telegraph recently that said, “To become a world leader in broadband, we must prioritise competition as much, if not more so, than infrastructure.” Surely he’s mistaken in thinking anyone believes these factors are isolated? It’s obvious that infrastructure without business, consumers, government and charities adopting […]

Boris Johnson in Starbucks

You say tax, I say loss

Reuters has called Starbucks out on their accounting tactic that sees them report a loss to the taxman while boasting healthy cashflows to investors. From the article, “Over the past three years, Starbucks has reported no profit, and paid no income tax, on sales of 1.2 billion pounds in the UK.” Of course, our coffee […]

Apple v Samsung

If you can’t sue your partner, who can you sue

There’s no question that many supply chains are shrinking as manufacturers can become retailers, and retailers can increasingly become manufacturers. Plenty of retail sectors are feeling these waves in their ponds. It strikes me that cross-pollinating, and horizontal and vertical integration sound wonderfully simple growth strategies on paper, but in reality they involve emotion, history […]

Is the web becoming a funnel?

The modern business model from Silicon Valley is build. Don’t just make a computer, make digital products (as Steve Jobs said by launching a music player, then a music store, then a phone). Build and build again is what the dominant players are showing us to be the winning formula. Google was just a search […]

Kindle Fire

Kindle thoughts

Amazon has shown itself as the first true competitor to Apple in the tablet war. The launch of the Kindle Fire this week is an audacious move to out-price the iPad with a dumbed-down system costing just $199. Tablets are a future cornerstone for the world’s data consumption. As ever, Jobs lifted the curtain on […]

Innovate or deteriorate

Some business leaders say they can’t change because their demographic is 55 year olds and changing would jeopardize their custom. Changing would mean devaluing the offering. Changing would be a risk we don’t want to take. I’ve even heard, “We know our customer base is dying, but the boss wont change anything we’re doing.” We’ve […]

Is your marketing director for the toilet

The Internet has only really been around for the masses since Microsoft brought us Windows 95 and the ever-present Internet Explorer. But over 15 years on, digital and digital marketing still remains a bolt on for many businesses that should really know better. I’m always amazed when strong marketers tell me their marketing director (not […]

Meeting Mr Microsoft

Neil Thompson is the MD of Microsoft UK and Ireland and I recently saw him speak about his 18 years in innovation. He ran through his career in one of the world’s most influential companies; from exaggerating his skills at his job interview to today’s cutting edge. It was a walk down memory lane for […]

Retailing depth

Seth would say there’s a dilemma when wanting to grow your customer base of going deeper or wider with your product offering. Victor Churchill in Melbourne is a fabulously extravagant example of going deeper. They’re in the meat business but they’re anything other than a simple a butcher’s shop. This store takes things to an […]

TED teaches values?

TED is one of my favourite sites on the Internet. The talks are simply magnificent. Watch this one from John Gerzema (photo) of Brand Asset Consulting. He hits us with as many salient blows as is possible in 20 minutes, but one that particularly stood out for me was of values. Our mindless consumerism is […]

As seen on TV is back

Modern marketers (whatever they are) might well say TV advertising is dead, that it’s a bygone era. I’m not sure I agree. The communications group and advertising giant, WPP sells more than its fair share of TV ads and they’ve just had their best quarter for ten years. According to chief executive Sir Martin Sorrell, […]

Stick to the knitting

Stick to the knitting is the old business school adage that you say to a business that’s overstretching: the coffee shop that starts to sell furniture; the hairdressers that goes for a jewellery line. But the recession isn’t stopping some pushing very tenuous brand extensions. I confess to thinking The Sun had completely gone off […]

John Lewis bucks their own trend

It’s difficult to describe how most feel about John Lewis. I don’t mean their gorgeous stores or brilliant staff; I’m talking about their very different business model of employee ownership. Well, with pre-tax profits up 28% to £110m for the six months to July 31 they’re the envy of the high street this autumn. John […]

Is branding only for big guys?

Should every penny SMEs spend on marketing go on traffic initiatives that directly affect turnover? I know plenty of small business owners who’d say that branding is just for the big guys. They’re enraged with the anecdote that says, “half of all marketing is junk, and half of it works, but you never know which […]

Don’t believe the hype

A product, service or brand that’s being raved about is all well and good until you try it out for the first time. With mountains of people talking so wildly about something, you’ve naturally put it in the remarkable box. But what happens when it’s not remarkable; when it’s only OK; when it doesn’t blow […]

Kindle grows with proximity

Hadfield Road in Cardiff is a haven for the car buyer. It’s just a mile long but straddling nearly every inch of it you’ll find over 20 car dealerships. This proximity to your competitors certainly isn’t unique – pub chains all gather together in city centres. So does the sex industry in London’s Soho, and […]