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Welcome to The Stream: Allison+Partners’ content hub that features the latest news and trends making the biggest waves in media and marketing.

OCTOBER 17, 2019 //     

Jose Cuervo sponsors short documentary about Mexico's Day of the Dead

Credit: Marketing Dive

Dive Brief:

  • Tequila brand Jose Cuervo Tradicional announced this week a new film series that spotlights the Mexican holiday of Día De Muertos, or Day of the Dead, according to information provided to Marketing Dive.
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OCTOBER 17, 2019 //     

Snapchat’s targeting direct-response advertisers with new dynamic ads product

Credit: Digiday

With Snapchat’s new dynamic ads product, the company is targeting direct-response advertising spending from retailers and direct-to-consumer brands.

Dynamic ads, which have been in beta testing for more than a year, enable marketers to create ads on the fly. Because the ads connect directly to product catalogs, that means they’re always up-to-date, and they can also be automatically created and targeted based on a Snapchat user’s past behavior.

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OCTOBER 16, 2019 //     

Instagram adds privacy feature for third-party apps

Credit: Campaign AsiaInstagram is adding a privacy feature that will allow its users to more easily control the data they share with third-party apps. The tool, announced in a blog post on Instagram’s press site, will permit users to manage their data permissions within their Instagram settings, rather than reviewing their privacy settings within every third-party app they have connected to their profile.
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OCTOBER 16, 2019 //     

WHAT MARKETERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT DEEPFAKES

Credit: AdAge

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg gives a chilling address, speaking directly to the camera from behind a desk at his company’s base in Menlo Park, California. “Imagine this for a second: One man, with total control of billions of people’s stolen data, all their secrets, their lives, their futures,” Zuckerberg says. 

The truly sinister part of this public web chat is that Zuckerberg never said those words. The Facebook CEO was deepfaked. The video was real enough, picked from a 2017 publicly streamed speech, but the audio was dubbed by an Israeli startup called Canny AI as an exercise to demonstrate the possible dangers of deepfake technology. 

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AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 16, 2019 //     

Influencer targeting, true purpose, humor through data…six trends from PRWeek UK Awards winners

Credit: PRWeek

This list of the main trends is not exhaustive, but points towards some key dynamics shaping PR campaigns in 2019.

Before we begin, I strongly recommend reading the write-ups of the winning campaigns over the coming weeks to learn more about these outstanding pieces of work.

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AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 15, 2019 //     

PRWeek UK Awards Winners 2019: Healthcare: Ethical & OTC Consumer

Credit: PRWeek

Tasked with building awareness of Dexcom, a firm that manufactures continuous glucose monitors (CGMs), this campaign targeted the 400,000 people in the UK living with Type 1 diabetes.

Take me back to the PRWeek 2019 winners page

Allison+Partners commissioned a study with Type 1 charity JDRF that found 76 per cent of patients complained of suffering from stress, anxiety attacks or bouts of deep depression. This led it to shift campaign focus to demonstrating how CGMs can improve welfare.

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OCTOBER 15, 2019 //     

Burger King’s Mascot Hand-Delivers Food Through Uber Eats

Credit: Adweek

Hundreds of Los Angeles residents were likely startled to see the plastic perma-grin of Burger King’s mascot in their home security screens as they collected recent Uber Eats orders.

The King made “several hundred” such Uber Eats runs to L.A.-area homes with Amazon Ring doorbell cameras as part of a MullenLowe-led campaign to promote a new partnership between the fast-food chain and the ride-share-run food delivery service.

AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 15, 2019 //     

PRWeek UK Awards 2019: last chance to see the shortlist before the big night

Credit: PRWeek UK

The expert jury panel of more than 100 leading global brands and agencies have decided which entrants are in with a chance of winning at the glitzy annual awards night, taking place at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House in Park Lane.

Hope&Glory tops this year’s 34-category shortlist with 14 nominations, while last year’s big winner with six awards, Taylor Herring, has 12 nominations this year.

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OCTOBER 14, 2019 //     

BRACING FOR SWEEPING NEW DATA PRIVACY LAW

Marketers and publishers are less than three months away from dealing with a new law that could have the largest impact on digital advertising since the introduction of the iPhone. The California Consumer Privacy Act, or CCPA, takes effect Jan. 1, bringing a host of new regulations to the nation’s largest state that will significantly restrict how brands collect and manage the consumer data that has fueled digital advertising for years. 

The law, for instance, will require an “opt out” button on every page of every website, allowing consumers to easily tell companies they do not want any of their data to be collected or sold. Consumers can also tell tech companies, publishers or brands to delete their data. People may also opt out from a company’s terms of service without losing access to its offerings. Companies are also barred from selling data on anyone under the age of 16 without explicit consent. Industry players could face even stricter rules as a result of a new proposal that could be headed for the November 2020 ballot. READ MORE
AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 14, 2019 //     

How Gen Z Impacts Urban Mobility

By Marcus Gamo

A short time ago, the auto industry viewed millennials as the lost generation. Automakers expected car sales to plummet and prepared for change. But that didn’t happen. Instead, millennials delayed their adoption of cars until they started getting married, having children and discovering the suburbs.

Simultaneously, the growth of the smart mobility movement with the introduction of rideshare, car share, e-bikes, high-speed rail, scooters and automaker-backed subscription models have transformed how we define transportation. This dramatic change has birthed a mobility culture. The “me” foundation of car culture – where a car takes “me,” how it makes “me” feel about myself and how it represents my values – has been replaced by a “we” perspective.

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OCTOBER 10, 2019 //     

ESPN designates ‘SportsCenter Top 10 Day’ by recognizing local youth athletes

Credit: The Drum

Over the past month, ESPN has been traveling to the hometowns of young and amateur athletes whose plays have been featured on SportsCenter’s Top 10 plays of the day, the #SCTop10. Today (10 October) has been designated ‘SportsCenter Top 10 Day’ by the sports network, to celebrate the people and places behind the plays.

‘SportsCenter Top 10 Day’ will kick off ESPN’s new and ongoing initiative to recognize those athletes that prove that greatness can happen anywhere, any time.

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AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 9, 2019 //     

“5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Became CEO of Allison+Partners,” With Scott Allison

Credit: Authority Magazine

“Enough money” is never actually enough. When we started the agency, it was my first job as a CEO. All the training for that role was on-the-job training. There are certainly financial challenges, and you never have enough cash when you get started. Everything seems to cost more than you think, particularly when you operate in expensive cities like London, San Francisco and New York. I specifically remember nine months into starting our business we had $4,000 in our checking account with $40,000 of payroll due the next week. The weight of that pressure was overwhelming. We had to make personal investments to make ends meet, which paid off in the long run. But I wish I had a better understanding of the financial pressures and needs from the onset.

had the pleasure to interview Scott Allison. Scott is global chairman and CEO of one of the fastest-growing global communications firms in the industry. Known for its unique culture, Scott founded Allison+Partners with a vision to build a positive and entrepreneurial environment where talented people at all levels could do great work and thrive. Scott oversees the firm’s Global Board, while continuing to provide communications counsel to many high-profile executives and clients. He is an expert in issues management and crisis communications; presentation and media training; and is regularly called upon to speak about issues facing the public relations industry. Prior to founding Allison+Partners, Scott was the West Coast president of Connors Communications and a senior vice president and partner at The Gable Group. He is a member of the Arthur W. Page Society and serves on the advisory board for ISOThrive, The Fraternity and the Church of the Resurrection. He is a recipient of the Monty Award given to San Diego State University alumni and was a finalist for both the EY Entrepreneur of The Year® and the American Business Award’s Communications Executive of the Year. A patron of San Diego State University’s School of Journalism and Media Studies, Scott provided a founding gift to the Glen M. Broom Center for Professional Development in Public Relations and funds a scholarship that supports internship opportunities for students.

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AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 9, 2019 //     

What’s at Stake for Nike & Other Top Brands as the NBA’s China Controversy Continues

Credit: Footwear News

As months of pro-democracy protests continue in Hong Kong, American athletic brands have found themselves swept up in several debates around free speech and censorship by the Chinese government.

Most prominent is the ongoing dispute between the NBA and China, which began on Friday when Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey tweeted his support for the demonstrators, sparking outcry from Chinese officials and fans. While the tweet — which included the words, “Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong” — has since been deleted, the rift with China has only widened in the days since as the league and team have attempted to mitigate the damage without issuing an outright apology.

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OCTOBER 8, 2019 //     

Amazon boosts Singapore presence with Amazon.com rollout

Credit: The Drum

Amazon is launching Amazon.com in Singapore, two years after entering South East Asia with the introduction of Amazon Prime.

The launch comes after feedback from customers to the e-commerce giant to have the ability to shop on desktop and mobile, have more local and international selection from Amazon and trusted sellers, paired with fast and reliable delivery, according to Henry Low, country manager for Singapore at Amazon.

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OCTOBER 8, 2019 //     

Instagram dark mode is here

Credit: CNN

New York (CNN Business)Instagram is rolling out a dark mode option, the latest major app to latch onto the eye-strain-reducing, battery-saving, chic-looking trend that's sweeping the globe.

The photo-sharing app's new appearance is similar to its rivals': It's embracing the darkness by flipping the default white background to black and gray. Instagram made the theme available to iOS and Android users in an update released Monday, according to Instagram's chief Adam Mosseri. READ MORE
OCTOBER 8, 2019 //     

Chinese firms Tencent, Vivo and CCTV suspend ties with the NBA over Hong Kong tweet

Credit: TechCrunch

Smartphone maker Vivo,  broadcaster CCTV and internet giant Tencent said today they are suspending all cooperation with the National Basketball Association,  becoming the latest Chinese firms to cut ties with the league after a tweet from a Houston Rockets executive supporting Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protesters offended many in the world’s most populous nation.

Vivo, which is a key sponsor for the upcoming exhibition games to be played in Shanghai and Shenzhen this week, said in a statement on Chinese social networking platform Weibo that it was “dissatisfied” with Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey’s views on Hong Kong.

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OCTOBER 4, 2019 //     

#MeToo, two years on: What’s changed at PR agencies

Credit: PRWeek

Two years after the beginning of the #MeToo movement, many PR agency leaders say they have not significantly changed their sexual harassment policies, but that doesn’t mean they’re ducking the issue. 

Agency executives say they have not updated the language of HR policies because PR firms mostly addressed harassment in their human resources standards long before the fall of men such as Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer and Steve Wynn.

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OCTOBER 3, 2019 //     

Grandmas help Impossible Burger with recipe for grocery store foray

Credit: PRWeek

REDWOOD CITY, CA: Impossible Foods is declaring its grocery store rollout a success, and it’s giving credit to always underappreciated grandmas. 

After its late September launch, Impossible Burger became the No. 1 single item sold in the meat department at Fairway’s two locations in Manhattan. "In Los Angeles, we have outsold ground beef at Gelson’s Markets, in some of the early reports," said Rachel Soeharto, Impossible’s communications manager. "We were the No. 1 packaged item at Gelson’s."

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AGENCY NEWS // OCTOBER 3, 2019 //     

Bellwether Survey: C-suite dinosaurs hold back communications

Credit: PRWeek

PRWeek and Boston University’s Communications Bellwether Survey has quickly become the most extensive and credible snapshot of the PR industry, winning awards, garnering positive peer reviews and being featured at high-profile academic conferences.

But this year’s second edition of the survey, based on 1,633 responses from in-house, agency and other practitioners, portrays an industry frustrated at the slow pace of change in their organizations and hampered by bureaucracy. (For an in-depth look at all the data and even more content, purchase the Bellwether Premium Edition.)

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OCTOBER 3, 2019 //     

MORGAN SPURLOCK ON THE MAKING OF 'SUPER SIZE ME 2'—AND OPENING HIS OWN CHICKEN RESTAURANT

Credit: AdAgeHard as it is to believe, it’s been more than 15 years since “Super Size Me” came out. The documentary made a star out of Morgan Spurlock, the filmmaker who subsisted solely on food from McDonald's for an entire month. In the process he charted the health effects he endured—they weren’t good—as well as the dark influence of the fast-food industry in American society. 

Today Spurlock is back with a sequel. With “Super Size Me 2: Holy Chicken!” Spurlock asks whether fast food has gotten any healthier in the intervening years, as industry proponents claim. "The marketing's gotten healthier," Spurlock jokes on the latest episode of the "Ad Lib" podcast.
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OCTOBER 3, 2019 //     

Uber launches a shift-work finder app, Uber Works, starting in Chicago

Credit: TechCrunch

What do you do when your current business model is so staggeringly loss-making you’re having to warn investors it may never turn a profit, at the same time as it’s under increasing legal and regulatory attack?

One answer might be to pivot. Uber  isn’t doing that, exactly. Not yet anyway. But it has just officially announced the launch of a new app for matching shift workers with shifts, called Uber Works, working in partnership with staffing agencies.

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OCTOBER 3, 2019 //     

Don't Lose Your Head in a Crisis

By: Marcel Goldstein

What fascinates me most about a crisis is that it reveals a lot about human psychology. I personally don’t believe you can navigate a crisis effectively if you don’t take stock of the human emotions bubbling up around you during one. The crisis within the crisis — of people reacting to the events — often determines the effectiveness of business decisions and outcomes.

Psychologists have observed that when people feel under attack, it generates a fight-or-flight response. I believe when a business is threatened by outsiders, it simulates the same survival instincts our ancestors felt when their tribe was in the presence of a predatory animal.

Along with a crisis communications plan, I also believe you need an accompanying “psychology plan.” This should establish how you will handle the different reactions to a crisis that could either impede development of a thoughtful communications approach or skew the approach and steer your organization into greater trouble.

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Put this lens on any recent crisis response you have witnessed. How often do you hear complaints nobody within an organization took responsibility for a crisis or the CEO left the response to a spokesperson or non-executive? This is the flight mentality in action. Lower-level employees often embrace the U.S. Secret Service mindset to “take the bullet.” Calls to “protect the CEO” and allow him or her to stay out of the “line of fire” are common. Meanwhile, a CEO with a flight mentality is comfortable staying out of plain sight.   

Alternatively, many organizations also fail to hear the cries of their critics and suit up for battle — the fight response. Organizational responses to crises commonly involve a variety of fight responses, including shifting blame to clients, partners or consumers, attacking critics for their perceived unreasonableness, accusing outsiders of lacking smarts or sufficient knowledge, or dismissing critics by defending their actions in only a legal context.

Notice how prevalent violence metaphors are in these situations. It is not a coincidence. When the tribe is attacked, it is a declaration of war. Or, so it seems. During a crisis, key leaders meet in a “war room” or “safe room.” While some of this is to preserve confidentiality and enable rapid decision-making, an “under-siege” psychological element is also very much at play and affects decision-making.

While an organizational crisis tests the best of us, I don’t think an organization under criticism can win by succumbing to human instincts of fight or flight. Those natural-instinct urges to flee or stand and fight must be resisted. While these instincts saved many lives in the wild, they don’t work well in our complex civilizations. A successful crisis counselor will have both a strategy to manage those psychological tendencies and the credibility to help guide key leaders to an approach that seeks a positive outcome for all stakeholders involved in a crisis.

Marcel Goldstein is an EVP in Allison+Partners corporate practice. 

OCTOBER 2, 2019 //     

Kelly McNeff joins Toyota Motor North America as corp comms VP

Credit: PRWeek

Toyota Motor North America has hired Kelly McNeff as VP of corporate communications.

Joining Toyota from healthcare company McKesson, McNeff will lead all internal and external comms, including executive, business and brand communications, as well as social media strategy and content.

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OCTOBER 1, 2019 //     

Levi’s CEO on why brands must have a purpose and strong values

Credit: PRWeek

In the Cold War, denim was currency and Levi’s its greatest denomination, according to Chip Bergh, president and CEO of iconic jeans maker Levi Strauss & Co.

Bergh was a captain in the Army stationed in West Germany when he traveled for a couple weeks through the Nordics. One night at a hostel in Bergen, Norway, he washed his clothes in the shower, including a pair of Levi’s, and left them to dry by the open window overnight. (To this day, Bergh still wears his jeans in the shower.) In the morning, realizing he’d left his wallet out, he ran to the window to find something strange.

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AGENCY NEWS // SEPTEMBER 30, 2019 //     

Acura targets performance-minded young drivers on Amazon, Bustle and Thrillist

Credit: Marketing Dive

Dive Brief:

  • Acura unveiled a multichannel campaign aimed at younger drivers that highlights the brand's focus on high performance. "Less Talk, More Drive" will appear on network cable and national broadcast TV, including National Football League games and in top-rated programming and fall premieres on streaming video platforms, per an announcement shared with Marketing Dive.
  • To reach younger consumers, Acura will include digital media programming on platforms Donut Media, PadSquad and Teads, in addition to digital placements on Amazon, Bustle, ESPN and Thrillist. The carmaker plans to support the campaign with imagery that's customized for each of its social channels.
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SEPTEMBER 30, 2019 //     

Move over KOLs: 'KOCs' and 'private domain traffic' are hot in China

Credit: Campaign AsiaRecently, two new terms have become hot lingo within Chinese marketing and advertising circles – ‘KOC‘ (key opinion consumer) and ‘private domain traffic’. KOC naturally derives from the widely-used KOL (key opinion leader), a term which in itself has become so overused that it’s now quite often the brunt of ridicule from many netizens. While the recent fascination with ‘KOCs’ provide a shift in focus, the concept (and acronym) is hardly original. 

According to Allan Chen -- who himself has a trendy title of ‘Head of Tailwinds’ as a group VP at AI platform Mininglamp Technology after spending years as Miaozhen Systems VP of insight -- KOCs can be defined as the following: An interest group or community that is active on a certain platform, the cluster whose opinions are trusted and spread around to a certain extent, who are loyal followers of a certain brand, and after receiving certain incentives from the brand, are willing to speak out for their favourite brand or brand of interest voluntarily.  In other words, not a regular influencer, but a brand advocate in smaller but important community circles.
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SEPTEMBER 30, 2019 //     

Skateboard Legend Stacy Peralta Directs Gorgeous Yeti Ads About Life’s Unexpected Paths

Credit: Adweek

Whether you’re working at a New York hedge fund and dreaming of a life dedicated to fly fishing or you’re one of the world’s most ambitious athletes looking for a humbling way to reset your aspirations, there’s always value in shifting your perspective.

In a new series of long-form spots for gear brand Yeti, director Stacy Peralta—best known as a co-founder of the iconic Powell-Peralta skateboard company and for his films about skate culture—captures the thoughts, hopes and uncertainties of those who seek purpose and transformation in the outdoors.

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AGENCY NEWS // SEPTEMBER 24, 2019 //     

Financial Times, HP Inc. and Critical Mass lead the Digiday Worklife Awards nominees

Financial Times, HP Inc., Critical Mass and more are nominees for the 2019 Digiday Worklife Awards, which recognize media and marketing’s top employers and the values that make them unique.

In years past, theSkimm, Bloomberg, HubSpot, RPA and New York Media were honored for their efforts to foster a collaborative culture and work-life balance among other accomplishments.

SEPTEMBER 23, 2019 //     

How to succeed as a woman in Asia

Credit: Campaign AsiaThe time is ripe for change in Asia. Conversations around gender equality in the workplace are more robust and dynamic than ever before, partly thanks to the #MeToo movement that has touched many industries including media, marketing and advertising. However, women in Asia can still be bound by behavioural and cultural demands that dictate the gender-based challenges they face, which can lead to a shortage of women in leadership roles. Can women truly have it all? Perhaps, but the answer depends on organisational and industry-wide support for parents, and the continuous nurturing of mothers into leadership positions. According to women we interviewed, scepticism around the ability of mothers to perform in the workplace is still alive and well in Asia. This distrust, paired with poor organisational structures, leads to the epidemic that has been described as the "mid-career dropout".
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SEPTEMBER 23, 2019 //     

Why It’s Easier to Ban E-Cigarettes Than Guns

Credit: AdweekWalmart took a stance Friday, confirming it will stop selling e-cigarettes and other vaping products. The move comes in the wake of a public health crisis that has made headlines, with reports of extensive lung damage in some users and unknown long-term health effects, coupled with a rise in use by young consumers and potentially deceptive marketing practices by manufacturers. READ MORE
SEPTEMBER 23, 2019 //     

FEEDING AMERICA USES AI TO FIND THE FACE OF HUNGER

Credit: AdAge

The face of hunger in a new Feeding America campaign doesn’t have a name. She isn’t even  a person.

 Her face was created by morphing together, through the use of artificial intelligence, the countenances of 1,000 people who visit food banks across the country.

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SEPTEMBER 19, 2019 //     

Impossible Foods will debut in SoCal grocery stores on Friday as first step in phased national rollout

Credit: TechCrunch

Congratulations Southern California Gelsons store shoppers, you’re getting Impossible Foods on  your grocery shelves.

The meatless ground meat substitute will be appearing in stores across the Southern California as the first step in a phased nationwide rollout on Friday.

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SEPTEMBER 19, 2019 //     

BUD LIGHT AND ARBY'S JOIN ALIEN-THEMED 'STORM AREA 51' PARTIES

Credit: AdAge

The “Storm Area 51” raid started out as a big ol’ internet joke but quickly grew into a potentially real thing (putting many, including the Air Force and the Federal Aviation Administration, on edge). While its original organizer, college student Matty Roberts, officially called it off, the occasion morphed into a cause for some serious desert partying. And brands have climbed on board in support. 

The original raid was planned for Sept. 20—this Friday—to target a secretive military site in Nevada where conspiracy theorists think spaceships are being held. Bud Light and Arby's jumped on the Area 51 bandwagon earlier this summer, and they'll continue to back the alien-obsessed (and any potential extraterrestrial Area 51 escapees) at parties this week.

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SEPTEMBER 19, 2019 //     

Exclusive: PR agency bosses pledge to support global climate strike

Credit: PRWeek

They are urging the comms industry to "put our skills towards something bigger than our clients and grab headlines for the planet".

PR industry leaders and their staff will join millions of people across the world tomorrow (20 September), demanding action on climate change in the first day of a week-long Global Climate Strike.

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SEPTEMBER 17, 2019 //     

Attention CEOs: The Digital Privacy Clock is Set for Midnight on New Year’s Day

Credit: caprivacy.orgBy: David Baum and David Wolf

As goes California, so goes the nation

The digital privacy tsunami is coming at last to the United States and, unsurprisingly, the wave will break first on the West Coast.

On Jan. 1, 2020, California will implement The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). Under the law, any company that does business in California must reveal upon a resident’s request what personal information they have collected about any California resident. What is more, Californians will have legal grounds to require businesses and data brokers to cease the sale of that information and demand they delete it.

California has an outsized impact on U.S. law and policy for a range of reasons. Taken as a country, the state would boast the world's fifth-largest economy. Its concentration of entertainment, media and technology companies make it a cultural and business bellwether. California’s progressive voter base has also made it America’s policy proving-ground on issues ranging from workers’ rights to tax law to the environment. Indeed, in state capitals across the U.S., agencies and legislators have taken notice and lawmakers have begun drafting CCPA-inspired legislation.

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But perhaps the greatest reason for the Golden State’s impact on business is its population. One out of nine Americans now call the state home. Most of the world's Fortune 1000 companies, along with more than 3 million small- and medium-sized businesses, interact daily with California residents. With online commerce accounting for a growing portion of consumer spending, at least a million other small businesses sell into the state every year.

For these reasons, a major change in California law concerns most U.S. businesses, particularly as CCPA appears to be the beginning of a groundswell. As ironic as it might be that the end of the internet’s “Wild West Era” should come from the cradle of the technology revolution, it is perhaps also fitting. 

How did we get here, and what should organizations think about with just a few months until the curtain rises on this new era of data transparency?

GDPR: The first data protection soldiers on the beach

The European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) took effect on May 25, 2018. The law’s aim was both simple and, in the libertarian spirit that infused the Internet Revolution, laudable: to give each individual control over who collects their personal data and how that data gets used. Businesses that handle personal data would be required to inform consumers if they capture their information and to put into place safeguards to protect that data from unauthorized use.

The GDPR also comes with strong, practical and meaningful enforcement guidelines. Noncompliance can result in fines and penalties that would be material to the affected companies’ financial results and well-being. ­In just one recent example, the French data protection authority fined Google approximately $57 million (the highest fine to date) for violating the GDPR.

Today, many experts consider the GDPR to be the strongest data protection law in the world. And its passage despite the challenges of legislating across the entire EU is an inspiration to legislators previously stymied in their efforts to protect consumers. Inspired by the GDPR and frustrated with the pace of regulation at the federal level, California’s lawmakers took notice of GDPR and then did what Californians normally do: they innovated, built upon the core of GDPR and created a law that could be effective and withstand the rigors of the litigious U.S. regulatory environment.

Digital transformation has a cost

Recognizing the threat of the CCPA’s enactment and seeing an opportunity for innovation, the barons of Tech Capitalism have responded, starting the adjustment process to this new business and geopolitical reality.

In August, the Business Roundtable pledged to run their organizations with the interest of all stakeholders as a priority, not just shareholder value. A driving force behind this pledge from CEOs from some of the nation’s largest companies is the increased scrutiny of how companies handle personal data.

Sensing strong consumer support for the CCPA and similar initiatives, major players across a broad swath of sectors ranging from large banks to retail have already started the compliance process for Jan. 1. An open question remains: Are the majority of non-technology organizations as ready?

Conventional belief holds that the first company caught in CCPA’s enforcement net will be a “big tech company,” and enforcement officials will be tempted to make an example of a large firm. Yet, there is a chance one of the first targets will be a smaller non-tech organization.

A common chestnut in this era of digital transformation is “every company is a tech company, but they might not know it yet.” Nearly every business organization, regardless of size, is undergoing some form of digital transformation for survival or competitive advantage. The common deployment of “digital transformation platforms” for late-stage tech adopters is the use of e-commerce, CRM marketing, online purchases, cybersecurity, cloud adoption and social sales engagement. These are now considered common business practices for “non-tech” companies.

In the race to transform, many CIOs and CTOs have, often unwittingly, left privacy concerns behind other, more pressing imperatives. While this is understandable, and to this point has not been a costly decision, CCPA changes the calculus and starts a clock for each company. It is now no longer a question of “if” but of “when” a company will find itself called upon to account for its privacy practices.

With less than six months until the law is enacted, all companies and organizations operating in California or with the need to think about:

  • Conducting a complete audit of all customer engagement software
  • Close coordination between IT, sales, legal and marketing
  • Coordinating with all partners and third parties that operate within the sales cycle
  • Consulting with and informing stakeholders at all steps in the process
  • Understanding the monetary and reputational risks of noncompliance
  • Review of reputation management process and procedures

David Baum is a senior vice president in Allison+Partners’ Corporate practice. David Wolf is the managing director of Allison Advisory, a management consultancy focused on building lasting competitive advantage for its clients by helping them understand, manage, meet, and ultimately exceed stakeholder expectations throughout the enterprise. This is the first in an ongoing series about data collection and privacy.

SEPTEMBER 12, 2019 //     

A New Monopoly Game Celebrates Women, but What About the One Behind the Original?

Credit: New York Times

There’s a new version of Monopoly coming, one that celebrates women by paying female players more than men.

The game, Ms. Monopoly, is the first to feature a new character — an advocate for investing in female entrepreneurs — on its cover, according to a news release this week from Hasbro, the entertainment giant that owns the game.

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SEPTEMBER 12, 2019 //     

Chinese consumers angered by Muji

Credit: Campaign AsiaChinese people are busy with preparations for the Mid-Autumn Festival, and merchants want to take advantage of the period. However, Japanese brand Muji has encountered troubles due to a statement on Weibo that caused strong dissatisfaction among some Chinese consumers.

Muji described the location of a planned event using the term "French Concession" in a 10 September post, which caused immediate dissatisfaction among some netizens.
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AGENCY NEWS // SEPTEMBER 12, 2019 //     

2019 SABRE Awards Asia-Pacific Winners

Credit: Holmes ReportWinners were announced during the 2019 Asia-Pacific SABRE Awards ceremony, which was held at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Singapore, on September 12.

IN2 SABRE Award Winners, which recognize excellence in multimedia content creation, have been unveiled here. READ MORE
SEPTEMBER 11, 2019 //     

NFL Launches ‘Game Day All-Access’ Series Exclusively on YouTube

Credit: Variety

The NFL has tapped YouTube as the exclusive distributor for its latest media project: a docu-series highlighting pivotal game-day moments of players and coaches both on and off the field.

Produced by NFL Films, the “NFL Game Day All-Access” original series will combine game footage, behind-the-scenes clips and wired sound to tell the game-day stories from players and coaches’ perspectives from the 2019 season. The 22-episode weekly show launches Wednesday (Sept. 11), streaming for free exclusively on the NFL’s YouTube channel.

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SEPTEMBER 11, 2019 //     

‘You’re It’ Becomes a Rallying Cry for Kids to Push Their Limits in Nike’s New Anthem

Credit: Adweek

In the traditional game of tag, being “it” usually isn’t a positive, since it turns you into a sort of infection vector looking to get rid of the burden as fast as possible. But perhaps there’s another way to picture being “it”: as an empowered seeker around whom all action is centered.

Nike’s new spot “You’re It”—the first for Nike Kids from agency Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam—brings the brand’s high-adrenaline and visually fluid approach to a younger demographic.

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AGENCY NEWS // SEPTEMBER 10, 2019 //     

Shortlist for inaugural Purpose Awards revealed

Credit: PRWeek

PRWeek has revealed the finalists in the running for the inaugural Purpose Awards

The shortlist reflects the best in purpose marketing, which will be on full display on October 16 at Marshall’s Landing in Chicago during the first night of the PRDecoded conference. The awards recognize activations that use creative ideas to promote positive causes and to acknowledge the organizations and individuals behind them. 

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AGENCY NEWS // SEPTEMBER 9, 2019 //     

PRCA National Awards 2019 Shortlist

THE UK'S MOST PRESTIGIOUS PR AWARDS!

Why the PRCA National Awards? 
  • Promote the industry – We’re a not-for-profit, so all the profits from our awards are invested back into our industry to help teams and individuals maximise the value they deliver to clients and organisations
  • Encourage your team – Shine the limelight on your team’s fantastic work and reward every member of your team that contributed
  • Make your mark – Display and celebrate your success over the last year and be recognised by the world’s largest PR association
  • Expand your network – Win new business and open opportunities for new clientele by rubbing shoulders with award-winning businesses
  • Gain global recognition – Be globally recognised by the PR industry, with our judging process consisting of industry-leaders from across the world.
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SEPTEMBER 9, 2019 //     

Spotify Adds Snapchat Music Sharing Feature

Credit: Variety

Spotify users will soon be able to recommend tracks and podcasts directly to their friends and followers on Snapchat, thanks to a new sharing option announced Monday. The new feature allows users to either add albums, tracks or podcasts to a story, or share them directly with their friends.

Users who see a shared song in a story, or receive a listening recommendation from their Snapchat friends, will get to see the full album art. To listen, they simply have to swipe up and tap on the context card, which will automatically open the Spotify app — provided it is installed on their phones, of course.

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SEPTEMBER 9, 2019 //     

WENDY’S PLANS NATIONWIDE BREAKFAST LAUNCH FOR 2020

Credit: AdAge

Wendy’s Co. is gearing up to win a much bigger bite of the U.S. breakfast business with an expansion plan that might boost business in the long run but will eat into near-term profitability.

The burger chain said Monday that it plans to bring breakfast items across its U.S. restaurants in 2020. Wendy’s has about 5,800 U.S. locations but currently serves breakfast only in more than 300 of them. Items on Wendy’s breakfast menu include a Breakfast Baconator, a take on one of the company’s well-known hamburgers, with the addition of an egg; a Frosty-ccino drink that looks like a coffee syrup-enhanced take on its signature Frosty frozen dessert, and a honey butter chicken biscuit.

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SEPTEMBER 4, 2019 //     

Video: Krispy Kreme wants your disappointing pumpkin spice products

Credit: PRWeek

Wondering how and why you ended up with pumpkin spice beard oil?

Well, now you can trade it in, along with any other regrettable pumpkin spice product purchases, at Krispy Kreme in exchange for a Pumpkin Spice Original Filled Doughnut.

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SEPTEMBER 3, 2019 //     

Burger King makes a play for confused voters with the Democratic Burger

Credit: The Drum

Burger King is seeking to win over a majority of French fast food fans with the launch of its Democratic Burger, a €2 burger of the week chosen by a public vote from a range of eight best sellers.

Created by Buzzman to reflect the political turmoil in Europe, the populist campaign will see staples such as the Big King, Chicken Tendercrisp and Big Fish, go head-to-head in a play for public affections with the winner decided by voting via the Burger King app.

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SEPTEMBER 2, 2019 //     

Now Facebook says it may remove Like counts

Credit: TechCrunchFacebook  could soon start hiding the Like counter on News Feed posts to protect users’ from envy and dissuade them from self-censorship. Instagram is already testing this in 7 countries including Canada and Brazil, showing a post’s audience just a few names of mutual friends who’ve Liked it instead of the total number. The idea is to prevent users from destructively comparing themselves to others and possibly feeling inadequate if their posts don’t get as many Likes. It could also stop users from deleting posts they think aren’t getting enough Likes or not sharing in the first place. READ MORE
AUGUST 29, 2019 //     

Popeyes uses free chicken sandwiches to lure new global CMO

Credit: PRWeek

MIAMI: Here’s one way to get your hands on the highly coveted Popeyes chicken sandwich.

The fast-food chain is seeking a global CMO. Fernando Machado, the current global CMO for Popeyes and Burger King, posted about the job on LinkedIn with an image that included the text, "Y'all...we are looking for a global CMO for Popeyes! (You get free chicken sandwiches.)"

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AUGUST 28, 2019 //     

Nano influencers overtake micro and macro in NZ

Credit: PRWeek UK

Independent influencer marketing agency The Social Club has released a white paper on influencer trends in New Zealand including industry averages, growth and best practices. The agency gathered data from more than 3,000 of its campaigns and ran surveys with agencies, brands and influencers in the market. Here are a few key findings.

Nano influencers lead the way

Nano influencers (1k-5k followers) make up the majority of influencers at 43 per cent, followed by micro influencers (5k-15k followers) at 30 per cent. This indicates that the industry is growing and more creators are investing in their personal brands. Overall, this has led to the influencer community doubling between 2018 and 2019.

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AUGUST 27, 2019 //     

Instagram targets Snapchat’s jugular with Threads messaging app

Credit: The Drum

Facebook-owned Instagram has escalated its arms race with rival Snapchat with the launch of a new messaging app designed to facilitate unrestricted sharing between close friends.

Threads will enable members to share attributes such as their status, location, speed and even battery life as well as text, photos and video

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