Archive for February, 2013

With the success of the Apple Stores, it is hardly

surprising that Google may be thinking of getting into bricks

and mortar outlets for its electronic gizmos as well. The

website 9to5Google quoted an “extremely reliable source”

as saying that the first Google Stores will be up and running

by the end of this year.

The report says the objective is to get new Google

Nexus, Chrome, and “especially upcoming products”

directly into the hands of consumers. Google executives

are said to believe that the new – and expensive – Google

Glass will be hard to sell unless potential

buyers have a place to experience it.

That reportedly pushed the top brass to

embrace the Google Store idea.

In a follow-up story by IDG News

Service, analyst Greg Sterling of Opus

Research said Google doesn’t have

as many products as Apple, but it does

have enough to justify a physical retail

presence. He said people will be able to

get a better feel for a product, such as

the cutting-edge Google Glass headset,

by having Google employees demonstrate it for them.

A new study finds that while online shopping has increased over the

last three years, overall it has leveled out. Boomers are

increasing their online shopping, up 4.5% since 2011. But

Millennials are cutting back, down 7% for the same period.

The study suggests that could be because Millennials

are feeling the effects of the still-tight economy.

Or it could indicate a plateau in online shopping.

There have been shifts in purchasing categories.

Since January 2012, online purchase of health and beauty

products increased 12% for shoppers age 50-64. The

percentage of 18-24-year-olds who say they’ve purchased

any products online, even once, has dropped in all

categories except books, music, and tickets.

Sentimentality ruled in this year’s Super Bowl ad

competition. The consumer Ad Meter panel for USA Today

picked the latest Clydesdale spot for Budweiser as the

best – a heart-tugging story of a horse and trainer being

reunited. But a panel of ad industry experts and consumers

polled by the Wall Street Journal put Jeep on top for its

halftime tear-jerker about military families waiting for their

loved ones to return home.

Jeep had the time advantage. The Chrysler Group

unit bought a full two minutes of CBS broadcast

time for the military-themed spot voiced by

Oprah Winfrey. It did well with the USA Today

Ad Meter panel as well, coming in at fifth place.

Ad Age agreed with the Ad Meter folks,

giving four stars to the Bud spot and applauding

Anheuser-Bush InBev for again making the

horses the stars of the spot. “Weepy, sentimental,

nostalgic. I don’t care,” the reviewer wrote.

Both panels went with humor for their number two

pick. The Ad Meter folks liked the “Miracle Stain” spot from

Tide, with the outcome of the game determining that the

version aired showed a male fan with a stain on his 49ers

jersey depicting NFL great Joe Montana, of San Francisco

fame, of course. With fans lining up at her home to see the

“miracle stain,” the man’s wife washed the stain out with

Tide and ends the spot in her own Baltimore jersey, saying

“Go Ravens.”

The WSJ panel gave second place to Taco Bell’s spot

featuring 87-year-old Bernie Goldblatt and other seniors

sneaking out of their retirement home for a wild night on

the town.

Dead last in the Ad Meter rankings was GoDaddy.

com, whose ad depicted the “sexy” side of the website

company with model Bar Refaeli and the “smart” side with

a geeky character actor called Walter.

A new report from IBISWorld finds that consumers

expect to spend slightly more this Valentine’s Day than they

did in 2012.    Total revenues for the holiday are expected to

grow 3.2% to $20.8 billion.  Spending is predicted to be

$134.08 per person, compared with last year’s $133.99.

“Although overall spending will increase slightly,

consumers are still watching their wallets, and spending

on expensive items will suffer as a consequence,” IBISWorld

industry analyst Lauren Setar said. “Due to these trends,

Valentine’s Day purchases are expected to trend toward

conventional gifts, giving candy and flowers an edge this

year.”