JANUARY 13, 2014

If you prefer to read this in a browser, please click here.
Automotive Continues to Bounce Back
Carmakers sold more than 15 million vehicles in the United States in 2013 -- the most since 2007, according to auto sales tracker Autodata. In 2013, a total of 15.6 million vehicles were sold (7.8 million passenger cars and 7.8 million light trucks), which was 8% higher than last year's total of 14.5 million. Sales peaked in August last year as 1.5 million cars were driven off lots. The American carmakers can all claim some responsibility for the category's success. GM, Chrysler, and Ford had sales increase 7%, 9% and 11% in 2013, respectively. Luxury automakers have reason to smile too, as BMW (+8%), Daimler AG (+13%), Jaguar (+20%) and Porsche (+21%) all outpaced category-level growth and showed healthy gains in the U.S.
So what? Good news in a major advertising category like automotive is welcome by anyone with sales responsibilities, but folks at Condé Nast should be especially encouraged. Between January and October of last year, auto advertisers spent 3.6% more overall in media, but actually spent 4.3% less in magazines versus 2012, according to Kantar Media. However, CN bucked the trend, and grew advertising in the automotive category by 27%. Hopefully the industry can maintain its positive growth and chooses to reinvest the gains already accounted for by promoting to CN readers.
> Read more and comment
Americans Appreciate Streamlined Technology, but Look For A Chance To Unplug
Seven in ten American consumers claim they need to plan time to disconnect from being online, according to a 2014 trends report by Mintel. The surge of smartphones and tablets in the past few years has enabled consumers to be always connected to the internet. As smartphone ownership becomes more widespread (the majority of Americans now own one), users are also recognizing the value in spending time away from digital. And while consumers want to unplug, they also want new technology to streamline their lives. One in four would like a car that can drive itself in certain circumstances, leaving them to do other activities. One in three consumers would like to try technology devices that track their exercise exertion and progress.
So what? We are starting to see consumers' relationships with technology become more complex. They recognize its value and convenience, but are cognizant that sometimes it can be too much. Part of print’s value is enabling consumers to disconnect and focus on the stories and photographs (and ads) in front of them. Condé Nast's print properties are in a position to reach consumers in the always-on, driven and distracted digital space, with a very different experience.
> Read more and comment
Social Media
Facebook is Still the Most Popular Social Network in the U.S.
Nearly three of four U.S. adults (73%) now use social networks, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center. Facebook, used by 71% of adults, remains the dominant network and is popular across a diverse mix of demographic groups. But Facebook is by no means the only social network in the market. 42% of adults now use multiple social networking sites, some of which have developed unique demographic user profiles. LinkedIn, which is used by 22% of adults, is especially popular among college graduates with higher household incomes, while Pinterest (21%) appeals to female users. Twitter (18%) and Instagram (17%), with a substantial overlap in users, are especially popular among younger adults, urban-dwellers, and non-whites. The social networks that exhibit the highest levels of user engagement are Facebook and Instagram. 63% of Facebook users visit the site at least once a day, as do 57% of Instagram users.
So what? Condé Nast brands are active on many social networks, and often find that there are wide differences in audience behavior between them. Understanding what audience can be found on each platform can help us prioritize the networks we want to focus on, and tailor the content to best fit what our social followers are looking for.
> Read more and comment
Food & Drink
US Beer Sales Start to Fizz Again
Although flat during the recession, beer sales are starting to fizz again according to a report from Mintel. Growing at a moderate pace, Mintel forecasts beer sales to reach $95 billion by 2018, up from $83 billion in 2013. Light beer remains the most dominant beer type by sales, but sales are declining, as the economy bounces back and consumers upgrade from their low-priced lighter beers to craft and premium brands. In the past three years, craft beers have experienced significant volume sales growth. There are a number of reasons that craft beers appeal to drinkers, including offering a range of flavors, varieties (IPA, ale, etc.), sheer number of new products, and high quality.
So what? As beer drinkers refine their choices to reflect their current socioeconomic status and taste preferences, they will be seeking information on new brews and positive reinforcement of their current brand choices. Condé Nast offers a range of outlets to feature premium beer advertising that fits the type of lifestyle many of these brands are looking to promote.
> Read more and comment
Quick Takes
The Latest Political Divide? Vodka. Democrat Voters Drink Grey Goose, while Republicans More Likely to Prefer Ketel One
> Read more and comment
The Majority of Email Opens in December Happened on a Mobile Device
> Read more and comment
As Tablet & Smartphone Penetration Saturates, App Download Growth Rates Slow
> Read more and comment
Half of Cell Phone Owners Have Been Bumped Into By Someone Distracted By Their Phone
> Read more and comment
Condé Nast
Feedback, questions, ideas for future issues? Please contact:

Phil Paparella
Condé Nast Research & Insights | Associate Director
1166 6th Avenue, 14th fl. | NY, NY 10036 | office 212.790.6044 | philip_paparella@condenast.com

Tamar Rimmon | Senior Manager, Digital Analytics
Robyn Hightower | Manager, Research & Insights