posts from Europe

Austerity policies in the U.K. are set to continue for at least the next five years. But while austerity continues to affect everyone in the U.K., it appears that it is weighing on women more than on men. According to J. Walter Thompson London’s seventh quarterly Austerity Index report, women are less likely than men […]

Britons are by far the most prolific online shoppers in the developed world, according to the latest International Communications Market Report from Ofcom in the U.K., as this chart from the FT shows. On average, Britons spend an average of almost £2,000 a year on e-commerce, and an average of more than £3,000 apiece when […]

The great and the good of tech and marketing gathered in Dublin last week for the Web Summit—read on for Part 2 of my roundup (and find Part 1 here). Creating a company culture: Many of the tech CEOs who were interviewed talked about company culture and recruitment as both a major challenge and crucial […]

  Now in its fourth year, the Web Summit in Dublin is being heralded as Europe’s answer to SXSW Interactive. A record 20,000 people attended the 2014 event last week (from 500 when it started), and the speaker lineup included everyone from PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, Nest founder Tony Fadell, former Apple CEO John Sculley […]

As we’ve noted, the 2014 World Cup will be the first truly mobile tournament, with smartphone-equipped fans keeping up with the action wherever they are. Viewers are also using their phones to discuss the action, a habit that looks likely to help make this World Cup the biggest social media event ever, as Reuters and […]

In collaboration with JWT SONAR™, today JWTIntelligence launched Personality Atlas: The World Map Redrawn, a report and interactive website that envisions a world map redrawn according to personality type. Which countries would share borders? In which hemisphere would each reside? And what can multinational marketers learn from this reimagined map, especially as they look to […]

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With the continuing rise of digital screens, traditional television, once the most beloved form of entertainment, is no longer king. And print is disappearing from mind altogether. In an annual survey conducted by the U.K.’s Ofcom, respondents are asked which media they would miss the most. The 2013 results, recently published, are striking. While TV […]

The consensus at 2013’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona was that “change is happening fast, and at an astonishing scale,” as we wrote back then. That’s one thing that hasn’t changed since last year. Speakers and attendees routinely noted how dizzyingly fast technology and the business landscape are evolving and how quickly consumers are embracing […]

It’s time for brands to start acknowledging, reflecting and appreciating the complexity of modern man, as we discussed in last year’s The State of Men report. According to more recent research from JWT London, 43 percent of U.K. men agree that their gender is more well-rounded today than it used to be. Take the fact […]

With privacy a defining theme over the past year, Dictionary.com has named “privacy” as word of the year (an accompanying infographic spotlights the year’s privacy-related news). Last week we featured our recent research on consumer views around The End of Anonymity, one of our 10 Trends for 2014—the idea that it’s becoming nearly impossible to […]


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Things to Watch

  • The sharing economy grows up
    March 3, 2015 | 3:30 pm

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    Uber recently signed a partnership with mega luxury hotel line Starwood—for every dollar a Starwood loyalty customer spends on Uber, they’ll earn a point toward free rooms and other perks.

    Continue reading “The sharing economy grows up” »

  • Digital immersive exercise
    February 25, 2015 | 4:04 pm

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    Equinox’s new revved-up cycle class speaks to a growing exercise trend—digital immersion. This month the gym brand unveiled Pursuit, an immersive cycling concept, to limited U.S. gyms. Equinox describes the program as “an immersive studio cycling experience that uses groundbreaking gaming and data visualization to drive competition and inspire peak performance.”

    Continue reading “Digital immersive exercise” »

  • Science fare
    February 20, 2015 | 2:07 pm

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    The worlds of science, gastronomy and art are continuing to cross-pollinate—from edible conceptual art to molecular gastronomy “lab cafés” to synesthetic dining events. Café ArtScience in Cambridge, Mass., is a recent example. Opened late last year by David Edwards, a Harvard engineering professor, the café serves whiskey “fogs” through a special carafe that turns the liquor into vapor (which means consumers don’t take in any of the calories and feel none of the intoxicating effects).

    Continue reading “Science fare” »

  • Aman’s authentic-luxe travel
    February 11, 2015 | 1:06 pm

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    As travelers continue to seek out authentic and unique experiences, hospitality brands keep raising the bar on hyper-localized offerings and exceptional access. Aman, for instance, is introducing a phinisi-style sailing ship in Indonesia, marrying the brand’s ultra-luxe sensibility with regional tradition. With an outdoor lounge and bar, the option to travel by motor, and air-conditioned cabins, the ship brings every modern comfort to an age-old means of navigating the Indonesian archipelago. Another Aman property, meanwhile, offers a dip into paleontology: Guests at Amangiri in southern Utah can join an official dig at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, working alongside fossil experts for a half-day. The cost of getting one’s hands dirty starts at $600. (Resulting Instagram images: priceless.) —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Aman

  • Adidas’ ‘virtual line’
    February 5, 2015 | 6:55 pm

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    Adidas’ new Confirmed app cleverly harnesses the fervor of collectors who normally line up for limited-edition shoes, moving fans onto a mobile platform. App users create an account, then get push notifications when hot new releases are on the way. Interested buyers in a given metro area—only New York City at launch—indicate their size and, if approved, receive details on where and when to pick up the shoes. An Adidas exec calls it a “virtual line.” In addition to collecting data on these super-fans, the app lets Adidas control which influencers get various styles, drives traffic to selected stores, builds additional buzz and cuts out secondary-market sellers armed with bots that secure advance orders. —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Bloomberg

  • Adventurous play
    February 4, 2015 | 1:09 pm

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    Kids will slide through a “Tunnel of Terror” and get slimy on “Mount Mud” in Tough Mudder’s new obstacle course for the 7-12 set. The endurance-challenge purveyor is partnering with European soft drink brand Britvic on Fruit Shoot Mini Mudder, with events planned for the U.S., the U.K. and Ireland. The concept caters to parents looking to pry kids away from screens and get them moving—there’s now a CrossFit offshoot for kids, starting with preschoolers—in ways that are challenging and fun.

    Continue reading “Adventurous play” »

  • Rivals joining forces
    January 26, 2015 | 7:19 pm

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    Not long ago, a collaboration between two rival companies would have been seen as a counterintuitive and perhaps desperate measure. In 2015, however, BMW’s partnership with Volkswagen on fast-charging electric vehicle stations makes the automakers look self-confident, open and serious about sustainability and the common good.  Continue reading “Rivals joining forces” »

  • Virgin Hotels
    January 21, 2015 | 1:42 pm

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    Taking a cue from private clubs like Soho House—which now has outposts from Berlin to Chicago and Toronto—and cool hotel hangouts like the Ace, the first hotel under Virgin’s affordable-meets-aspirational banner houses a Commons Club. Offering “exclusivity for all,” the Commons hosts a “roundtable of ideas and indulgence” at a nightly social hour and includes a restaurant, bar and study area. Virgin marketing also taps into easyHotel lingo with the promise of no surprise fees and free wi-fi.

    Continue reading “Virgin Hotels” »

  • Google’s Ara phone
    January 16, 2015 | 11:51 am


    A new video from Google shows the latest prototype of its modular phone, which will launch this year in Puerto Rico. Project Ara emphasizes personalization—“What if you could make thoughtful choices about exactly what your phone does, and use it as a creative canvas to tell your own story?”—but the sustainability implications are also important.

    Continue reading “Google’s Ara phone” »

  • Nike taps into urban exploring
    January 5, 2015 | 1:13 pm

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    The city is the new terrain for Nike’s rebranded all-conditions gear, now named NikeLab ACG. Taking a cue from the urban exploration trend (“urbex”)—which involves venturing into unseen and generally off-limits structures and documenting the adventure—Nike says that “For today’s athletes, the city is the ultimate landscape,” complete with “modern obstacles” and many microclimates. Images show an intrepid explorer on a rooftop amid skyscrapers. The urban environment is now as challenging, intriguing and adventurous as the natural landscape.

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