Weekly Industry Brief: 8.26.2019

Happy Monday! Here is a recap of industry news from the last week.  As always, sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

P.S. With a new season upon us I’m feeling reflective and setting new goals. If you have any feedback for me on this weekly recap, let me know! I want to hear it all – good/bad/ugly. 

Brands + Retailers

  • Disney teams up with Target to store displays in holiday grab.  AdAge
  • Stock market tanks after Trump ‘hereby orders’ American companies to find alternatives to China.  Fast Company
  • Target’s digital, in-store investments paid off in Q2.  CNBC
  • Barneys seeks partner for digital, experience-focused future.  Bloomberg 
  • Walgreens expands Kroger grocery to more drugstores.  Forbes
  • Major fashion companies sign pact vowing to reduce industry’s environmental impact.  Forbes
  • The trendiest fitness class now: working out alone at home.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Macy’s is getting into clothing subscription and resale markets.  CNBC
  • Target is launching grocery brand Good & Gather in bid to boost its food business.  CNBC
  • WeWork isn’t a tech company. Here’s why that matters.  Harvard Business Review 
  • Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg sold over $23M worth of shares. Yahoo Finance
  • Amazon launching a new program to donate unsold products.  CNBC
  • This snack curator for Google is one of the most powerful people in food.  Fast Company
  • Amazon has proven unable or unwilling to effectively police third-party sellers on its site.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Welcome to the promoconomy: the competitive online marketplace of coupon codes and loyalty programs.  The New York Times 
  • Inside the wild, shockingly lucrative world of sneaker reselling.  GQ
  • Beautycon evolves beyond makeup. Fast Company
  • AllBirds steps into apparel with sustainable socks.  Wired
  • Sweetgreen now has a healthy salad for your dog.  Fast Company
  • Google falls to third place in worldwide smart speaker market.  TechCrunch
  • Amazon is looking to open a brick-and-mortar liquor store in San Francisco.  Business Insider

Marketing + Social Media

  • YouTube originals are no longer exclusive to YouTube premium subscribers.  AdWeek
  • Kohl’s turns to Facebook to help it bring digital brands to stores.  CNN
  • Facebook’s new tool lets you see which apps and websites tracked you. The New York Times
  • How fashion brands are acting like media companies.  Glossy
  • YouTube will reportedly sop serving targeted ads on videos for kids in a move that could cost it tens of millions of dollars per year.  Business Insider
  • America’s elderly seem more screen-obsessed than the young.  The Economist
  • Snapchat as a winning platform to reach Gen Z.  Business of Fashion
  • Apple pushes for privacy in the web browser which could affect publishers’ ad revenue.  Digiday
  • Can’t buy me likes: Instagram is coming for your engagement metrics.  AdAge
  • Facebook is opening five cages which will offer free privacy checks.  Metro News
  • Facebook opened up its Spark AR platform to creators on Instagram.  AdWeek
  • Instagram will test back-to-back Stories ads from different brands.  AdWeek

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Live-stream apps are changing the way people shop.  Business of Fashion
  • Ikea creates new division for smart home products.  TechCrunch
  • Apple Card can be damaged by wallets and jeans.  BBC
  • AR building comes to Android next week.  Engadget
  • Amazon Alexa users can now donate school supplies via voice.  VentureBeat
  • As customers begin to shop through voice assistants, what can brands do to stand out? Harvard Business Review


  • WeChat’s astronomical growth abroad.  Quartz
  • Alibaba’s strong results suggest Chinese consumers are still spending.  The New York Times 
  • Amazon tests water in Israel with website to attract local sellers.  Reuters

Weekly Industry Brief: 8.12.2019

Happy Monday! Here is a rundown of news from the last week. Sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brands + Retailers

  • H&M and Zara are closing stores to stay ahead.  Fortune
  • Nike’s first shoe subscription, two years in the making, is here.  Fast Company
  • Prime Day and the broad reach of Amazon’s ecosystem.  McKinsey
  • Uber stock falls after $5.2B loss.  AdAge
  • Nike, Foot Locker plan 50 large-format, high-tech stores.  CNBC
  • Steve Madden buys DTC brand Greats.  AdAge
  • The North Face focuses on experience with new store format.  Glossy
  • Arizona is moving away from tea to THC with vape pens and gummies.  Fast Company
  • FedEx-Amazon split will provide a shipment windfall for rivals.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Levi’s Red Tab merchandise now sold at Target.  MarketWatch
  • New Sears parent to shutter 21 namesake and 5 Kmart stores.  USA Today
  • Walgreens adds 200 stores to growing global closure list.  Forbes
  • Amazon tries new pricing model for 3rd party sellers.  CNBC
  • Bloomingdales launching a rental subscription service this fall.  PureWow
  • Amazon’s next foray into fashion is a personalized shopping service.  Engadget
  • Apple suspends listening to Alexa queries amid privacy concerns.  AdAge

Marketing + Social Media

  • Acknowledge, apologize, investigate: how big brands combat online outrage.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Snapchat launches ‘instant’ tool for creating vertical ads.  TechCrunch
  • Pinterest rolls out improved product recommendations.  VentureBeat
  • Facebook goes after Amazon, Hulu with ad-free video subscription channels.  AdAge
  • Nike’s app powers Foot Locker’s new NYC store.  Engadget
  • Quaker Oats gains consumer insights from Messenger chatbot.  The Drum
  • How Facebook is attempting to target ads without personal data.  AdAge
  • Twitter drops third party data providers.  AdAge
  • Instagram users may soon be able to communicate with those using Facebook Messenger.  AdAge
  • Current YouTube shopping-related trends marketers should know.  AdWeek

Startup + Emerging Tech + Acquisitions

  • Amazon requests FAA approval of delivery-drone plans.  CNN
  • Five apps that you’ve never heard of that teens are using to shop.  CNBC
  • Target incubator takes aim at Gen Z innovators.  Chain Store Age
  • Postmates to drop IPO filling next month.  TechCrunch
  • Verizon is selling Tumblr to WordPress parent company.  TechCrunch


  • Adidas boss warns currency war will hurt more than tariffs.  Fortune
  • Canadian Tire buys Party City’s Canada business for $174.4M.  Financial Post
  • Luxury brands use video games to speak to Chinese millennials.  Jing Daily
  • Germany’s online retailers look to reduce costly returns.  Bloomberg

Weekly Industry Brief: 8.5.2019

And just like that, it’s August! Here is a recap of industry news from the last week.  As always, sources are in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brand + Retailer

  • Uber cut a third of its marketing staff.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Summary of recent earnings from Facebook to Netflix to Amazon. eMarketer
  • Barney’s nears bankruptcy filing with plans to close most stores.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Why Airbnb, Target and Walmart are betting on the experience economy.  Fast Company
  • Apple and Goldman Sachs are planning to launch their credit card in August.  AdAge
  • Shake Shack launches delivery. Fast Company
  • CVS targets millennials with Prime-like membership.  CNBC
  • Whole Foods wants to help decorate your next party. Fast Company
  • Inside Nuuly, Urban Outfitters’ attempt to take on the rental market.  Modern Retail
  • Amazon adds a styling service to Prime Wardrobe.  RetailDive
  • Levi’s is moving away from off-price retailers.  Fortune
  • Amazon quietly launches private-label CPG products for commercial clients.  AdAge
  • 3M invents an ingenious way to ship packages without cardboard boxes.  Fast Company
  • Amazon wants to rule the grocery aisle, not just at Whole Foods.  The New York Times
  • CapitalOne reports data breach affecting 100M customers and applicants.  The Wall Street Journal
  • Brandless’ new CEO is dumping it’s $3 price point, hitting the stores and going big on CBD.  Forbes
  • L’Oreal says sluggish US makeup market has hit sales.  CNBC
  • How multi-billion dollar brand Carters became a staple while competitors shutter.  Washington Post
  • Textile waste has increased 811% since 1960.  Supply Chain Dive
  • Kroger is upping its advertising game.  Fortune

Social Media + Marketing

  • Victoria’s Secret hires transgender model.  Fast Company
  • Beauty brands are setting their sights on TikTok.  Glossy
  • Pinterest rolls out new shopping features.  VentureBeat
  • A rebrand will soon remind people that WhatsApp and Instagram are from Facebook. AdWeek
  • Streetwear subscription company ThreadBeat now spending half of its media budget on Instagram.  Digiday
  • General Mills’ Boxtops for Education goes digital.  Biz Journals
  • Pinterest reports strong demand for advertising on its platform.  AdAge
  • Twitter adds 5 million users, tops sales estimates.  AdAge
  • Amazon tests audio ads for Alexa Music.  AdAge

Start-ups + Emerging Tech

  • London is exploring facial recognition in security cameras.  Financial Times
  • Doubling down on business travel, Airbnb acquires Urbandoor.  TechCrunch
  • New Media buys Gannett for $1.4B to form local news giant.  AdAge
  • This startup wants to democratize custom sneaker ownership.  TechCrunch
  • Amazon to kill the Dash button.  CNN
  • How Walmart, Kroger are investing in AI and robots.  Forbes
  • Ikea creates six homes of the future.  Fast Company


  • Google will allow EU users to choose their default search engine when setting up Android devices.  Fast Company
  • India proposes user safeguard rules fro ecommerce platforms.  Bloomberg
  • AI as the way to win Chinese millennials and GenZ.  Jing Daily
  • The shadowy internet industry of click farms are booming in China.  Yahoo