What We’re Devouring 06.22.17
Venmo has already changed the way people interact with money. As simple as they’ve already made the process, you previously had to wait a few business days for the payment to hit your account. That’s all about to change as Paypal announced early this week that instant bank transfers would soon be available. By leveraging smart partnerships with Visa and Mastercard, making swift responses to market competitors and keeping its original mission in mind, Venmo continues to stake its claim as one of Millennials’ favorite brands.
Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods reveals a macro-trend in human behavior and a window into the future of shopping. The Atlantic states that with the “human sloth” trend, e-commerce and food-delivery businesses are taking off because human beings are fundamentally lazy and don’t want to leave the couch to buy stuff. Amazon knows this. By infiltrating the brick-and-mortar space and providing its affluent consumer with a “life bundle,” pretty soon Amazon customers will be able to lay on the couch watching movies via Amazon Prime, all while asking Alexa to order heirloom tomatoes and extra-virgin olive oil.
It pays to have perspective and your silence could cost you consumers. At least this is what Edelman’s Earned Brand report revealed, showing that 57% of consumers will boycott a brand that doesn’t share their beliefs and 65% say they wouldn’t buy a brand due to its silence on an issue. Now more than ever, marketers have no room to play it safe when it comes to owning beliefs and having a voice. “People really are buying on belief, and brands have a huge potential to gain if you do share your belief and act out on them,” said Mark Renshaw, global chair of brand at Edelman.
At its best, stock photography is generic and universal, but specific enough that anyone can see themselves in a staged shot of a group of people working around a laptop, making a cup of coffee, or going on a run. But for people who aren’t white or cisgender, this isn’t necessarily the case. Karen Okonkwo and Joshua Kissi are trying to change all of that with a new company, TONL. The entrepreneurs are looking to revamp the stock photos space with imagery that not only showcases cultural, social and racial diversity but also replaces its usual stale imagery with a vibrant aesthetic.
In Milan, where Men’s Fashion Week just wrapped up after four days, the runways were amply stocked with millennials. Yes, the models always tend to hover in the teens and 20s, but this year designers leaned on more Soundcloud rappers and Instagram celebrities than ever. Were these brands looking to genuinely give young artists and influencers a platform or is this another example of highbrow companies capitalizing off of lowbrow culture? After protests onstage, Twitter hashtags, and media frenzy, it seems as if this generation is more privy to believe the latter.
Will AI take all of our jobs and obliterate humanity? No. Will it change the landscape for how we think and add value to the world? Absolutely. HBR asserts that with the AI revolution on the brink, in order to upgrade past it, our definition of “smart” must transform to include higher emotional intelligence and creativity. Yes, AI learns faster, holds more information and outputs that information at speeds that humans could never actualize. But quantity (speed, time, and amount) will never trump quality (collaboration, listening, relating). This is where AI falls short, and where human intelligence has the opportunity to thrive.