Doodle Inspirations – July 31

At NDP we pride ourselves on staying on top of the industry – what’s new, what’s trending, what’s surprised us. Here are a few things from this week that caught our attention and got us talking: 

What started as a squabble over the on-demand release of Trolls:World Tour has ended in a new deal being inked between AMC Theaters and Universal Films. The deal reduces the AMC in-theater release length of Universal Pictures and Focus Features from 90-days to 17-days before it can be released to on-demand platforms. We’re excited to see the industry model evolving to embrace changing consumer behavior and provide possible ticket savings for traditional cinema goers.

This article from The Onion had us giggling as it touched a little too close to home laying out the pros and cons of banning the TikTok app in the US as told from the eyes of the stereotypical user. NDP continues to watch for developments in the social space – especially with TikTok – given the national security conversations around the app that continue to happen and the current discussions of Microsoft’s purchase.

While there were a couple articles this past week focusing on the overall impact of COVID on the coffee industry, this one about Panera’s recurring membership showed some interesting implications. With more than 800k people already signed up for the unlimited coffee offer that was introduced on June 22, Panera found that while the “morning coffee run” before going into the office went away, it was replaced by trips later in the day perhaps after the first few morning Zoom calls were completed or in the afternoon as a break. The company is also “considering a subscription or service tied to lunchtime” keeping in mind that many schools will be remote in the fall and “aim{ing] to help parents feed their children.” As fans of Panera already (coffee, tea, and lunch), we’re excited to see when this coffee subscription expands to other items on their newly-streamlined menu.

Continuing in the vein of food and coffee, Dunkin’, Starbucks and McDonalds announced the upcoming closure of 1,400 combined locations across the US in response to the pandemic. With company Q2 drops in revenue or net sales ranging from 20% – 38%, Sonic reported the opposite situation – a 30% revenue increase in May. In an effort to turn things around, McDonalds announced an additional $200million to be spent on marketing internationally in the second half of 2020 in an attempt to “accelerate recovery” and regain perceived market share lost during Q2 when ad spending was cut 70% in the US. While adding budget to marketing may help, we have to wonder if the loss felt in revenue and market share is more attributed to consumer’s feeling the need to stay home and/or the change of employment status for many.

Emmy nominations were announced this week. We are so energized to see the record number of Black actors nominated. As well, Schitt’s Creek received 15 nominations for its final season, and we groaned when we found Tiger King received 6 nods. While the awards ceremony will be virtual this year, we’re wondering what the final specifics of the show will be as awards shows historically have been marketing/advertising tentpoles for many brands.