Doodle Inspirations – October 9

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 that caught our attention and got us talking this past week: 

KitchenAid caught our attention in an unexpected way as they launched a new portal called KitchenAid Stories. Featuring documentaries, shorts and articles on topics like seed cultivation, the history of tea and banana leaf steaming, KitchenAid is focusing on the makers within the holistic food industry. Joining the ranks of brands like the Ritz-Carlton, we love content creation that connects holistic, aspirational creation (making – if you will) to consumers.

The Supreme Court will soon hear an appeal from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) attempting to loosen restrictions on ownership of local newspapers and television stations in a single market. This marks 17 years of the FCC attempting to revise various ownership restrictions including single-market media ownership. While the broadcast and newspaper industries support the change, consumer advocacy groups have sued the FCC over the rule changes for years, consistently resulting in the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals striking down the FCC specifically citing concerns of how the revision will affect ownership by women and minorities. While this move could result in updates to regulations dating back to the 1970’s, we will monitor any direct implications on media consolidation. 

Merchandise sales are big business and this year’s presidential candidates have some interesting offerings. From coloring books and fly swatters to wine glasses and hand sanitizer, the candidates offer a wide variety of products featuring their slogans, logos, catch phrases and beyond. Playing a large role in campaign strategy this year compared to others, this merchandise really caters to varying groups of voters that the candidates are trying to reach, engage and influence. While some of these merchandise choices may seem odd, we are fascinated as we internally discuss the “retrofit” of merchandise offering to better understand the audience that each candidate is targeting.

Facebook has released a response to The Social Dilemma – a documentary that debuted on Netflix September 9th and consistently has maintained a Top 10 list ranking since its launch. Focusing on the divisiveness and dangerous environment that social networks can create, Facebook broke with its previous pattern to directly address the film in a seven-point response aimed at reduce its impact as well as the number of users considering deleting their app/profiles. The response reiterates statements previously issued and publicized including polarization, election interference, misinformation and data usage among others. Given Netflix’s documentary was out for a month prior to Facebook’s response, we see the parallels in timing aligning with the antitrust report that was released by the House Judiciary Subcommittee a few days later concluding a 16-month investigation into Facebook and other big data companies. While no other social networks are part of the antitrust investigation, we’re waiting to see if any other social platforms featured in the documentary will follow suit and also release responses.