The scene: 100,000 years ago in Africa. Ancient humans, looking to organize for protection and survival, build off of a common framework — the first language. This allowed them to find each other, to hunt and gather, and to seek shelter from the elements as a community.  By Philip Kinzler

Millennials have been the focus of advertisers, retailers and media for over a decade, but as influential as this group has been, meeting millennials' expectations has proven difficult.  

In his latest blog post, Byron Sharp has some pretty strong words to say about brand tracking. As usual, there is lots in his post that is true and important to say, but not that much that is as new or challenging as the headline suggests.  by Josh Samuel

When The Hershey Company brand Reese's Pieces was featured in the 1982 hit film E.T., sending sales soaring, the use of product placement in movies and TV shifted into high gear. Who could forget the association of Aston Martin with James Bond, or Nike with Forrest Gump?

I was going to write about the Facebook/Google duopoly, but I got sidetracked by this question: If Google and Facebook are a duopoly, what is the market they are controlling?  by Gord Hotchkiss

In a previous post I mentioned that there were some disturbing trends lurking in WARC’s analysis of campaign trends from this year’s Cannes Lions. To my mind those trends say a lot about the sorry state of marketing practice today.  by Nigel Hollis

Rising internet penetration, denser urban locations, faster paced lifestyles and challenging working hours are adding more and more layers of complexity to consumers’ lives. According to the World Health Organization, “workplace stress is the health epidemic of the 21st century,” and multiple agencies have tracked the steady rise of anxiety related illnesses around the world. Consumers are feeling more stretched than ever before, and are increasingly striving for convenient solutions which help to simplify their busy lives.

Determining audience “identity” has become a major priority over the past year for U.S. marketers, many of whom plan to increase their investment in finding and developing identity solutions.

Johnson’s has radically transformed its 124-year-old brand to meet the needs and preferences of modern parents.

It sometimes seems as if we’re living in a post-trust age, when nothing and no one is beyond question or reproach. Granted, there are plenty of people and organizations that have been guilty of abusing our trust, and the damage can be serious.

Personalized communication with every customer is the future of marketing. McKinsey partners Julien Boudet and Kai Vollhardt say it’s easier than many marketers think, if you begin with the data you have.  By Julien Boudet and Kai Vollhardt

The major trade associations representing the advertising industry — are jointly writing to express opposition to the addition of the new census question that asks, “Is this person a citizen of the United States?”

Big data breaches like the ones that Yahoo and Target had can spell the end of a CMO’s career, according to Warren Zenna, founder of Zenna Consulting Group.

Buying media from an unwired network was similar to a game of pin the tail on the donkey.  It was labor-intensive (local invoices for days), hitting your target was never guaranteed and all parties were left with a dizzying feeling.  Thanks to upgrades in technology -- think machine learning -- those days are gone.

Brand loyalty is somewhat habit-based. Consumers buy products because their parents bought them, passing brand equity from generation to generation. Marketers know this and often leverage that heritage with customers, but in a world where there is disruptive competition for brand loyalty, is heritage marketing still viable?  By Amelia Duggan

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