MARCH 26, 2012

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An Invitation to the Condé Nast Idea Fair
Condé Nast will hold its first Idea Fair this Thursday in various conference rooms in 4 Times Square. A number of research firms will come in and address more specific problems that are characteristic of the problems we confront in our business. The four that will get focus in our first Idea Fair are: 1. NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT. How can Condé Nast develop new products for connecting with consumers in new and different formats? What approaches can be used for exploring and developing brand extensions? What are best ways of testing market demand for products that don’t yet exist, especially when those products may be difficult for consumers to imagine? 2. SOCIAL MEDIA. How can Condé Nast leverage both social media tools and social media data to respond to consumer trends, create or enhance marketing opportunities, uncover consumer/brand/ad category insights? How can social media help us understand our own brands and create opportunities for our clients? 3. DEEP BRAND AUDIT. How can Condé Nast conduct deep audits for existing brands? How do we take into account of a brand’s meaning and utility, and how do we evaluate the impact of shifts in consumer behavior, generational change, and technology on a brand’s market position? 4. ADVERTISING AND THE PATH TO PURCHASE. How can Condé Nast capture the consumer path to purchase in new and illuminating ways – including the role of different media in the process? If you would like to attend, please RSVP with which track you're most interested in to Pam Mulvey at
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The Boomerang Generation: It’s OK to Go Home
The share of young adults living with their parents spiked upward following the start of the recession in 2007 and has increased steadily since, reaching its highest point since the 1950s. Nearly three out of every ten young adults (25-34) have had to move in with their parents temporarily in recent years, according to the Pew Research Center. And while there has often been a stigma attached to those forced to move back home, 78% of those within the “Boomerang Generation” say they’re satisfied with their living arrangements. Nearly as many people within the Boomerang Generation who said the move home has been bad for their relationship with their parents (25%) said it was good (24%). This trend cuts across race, education and family income levels. There is no significant difference in the share of young whites, blacks or Hispanics that live with their parents. The living status of adults 18-29 does not relate to their educational status and parents with a household income of $100K+ are just as likely to have an adult child move back home as those with a HHI under $30k.
So what? The Boomerang Generation’s outlook is reflective of some of the new senses of normalcy in the current economy. And because this group has chosen to live at home to ease their overall financial burden, they might find themselves with extra discretionary income to spend on items that Condé Nast’s advertisers are promoting.
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Challenges for F-Commerce
Facebook has had measured success in a number of areas, but driving commerce cannot be counted among them, according to a recent report from Bloomberg. In the past year, JCPenney, Nordstrom and the video game retailer Gamestop all opened and subsequently closed storefronts on Facebook. The hope for each was that the social experience would help promote the shopping experience on the world's most visited website. That has not happened yet, and retailers are taking notice. Gap, which has 5.6 million fans between the Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy pages also closed its storefront last year after the retailer found that customers preferred shopping on their brand sites. Sucharita Mulpuru, an analyst at Forrester Research, says there is a fundamental challenge for retailers attempting to build an f-commerce presence. “There was a lot of anticipation that Facebook would turn into a new destination, a store, a place where people would shop, but it was like trying to sell stuff to people while they’re hanging out with their friends at the bar.”
So what? This report should give pause to any retailer that thought f-commerce might take the place of other business streams. Thus far, f-commerce has not matched the hopes set forth for it. A more traditional allocation of advertising dollars with Condé Nast to drive traffic to stores and brand websites is probably a more effective strategy for most retailers.
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Low Adoption Rates for Many Smartphone Technologies
Smartphones offer users a range of capabilities that are supposed to make life easier, but a recent Harris Interactive study found that Americans have been slow to take advantage of these offerings. Just 5% of those surveyed have scanned their phone as a movie or airline ticket, and fewer (3%) have used their phone to pay for clothing, electronics or convenience items, such as coffee. Why are these activity rates so low? Less than half of Americans say they are comfortable with their smartphone replacing a movie or airline ticket, and even fewer are comfortable with a mobile app that would allow them to make purchases at a retailer.
So what? While much has been invested in mobile payment systems (companies like Chase have heavily promoted their mobile products), this study gives a realistic update on consumer activity around them. While technology makes life for many easier, it is important for developers to understand that there is a large segment of the population who remain skeptical and prefer a more traditional approach.
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The Faces of Social TV
On any given night, Twitter’s trending topics are packed with items reflective of that night’s television programming. Research provider iModerate took a closer look at the people using social networks to comment on television in real time. The firm found that those combining social media and television (social TV) most often fall into one of three groups: • The Sports Nut: Male between 25-54, watches sports and comedy and enjoys social TV for the “big games” • The Extrovert: Male between 18-34, has a vast social network and often makes new friends online through postings about television • The Girlfriend: Female between 25-44, mainly engages in social TV while watching dramas and reality shows to connect with friends and family iModerate found that these people most often turn to social media while watching television to seek relevance and recognition, and to maintain relationships and connections.
So what? Since television is such a major part of the social media conversation, social media teams within Condé Nast might find this report useful to help develop strategy around social TV. Conversation around what’s happening on TV might prove to be an easy and effective way to further engage followers and fans.
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Quick Takes
US Vehicle Sales in February Up 15.7% over Last Year; Most Automakers Show Increased Sales
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NM Incite Reports the Number of Blogs Worldwide Have Nearly Tripled in Four Years
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Forbes Reports that there are 425 Billionaires in the US; 8.7% of Billionaires are in the Media Industry and 6.6% are in Fashion & Retail
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Google Holds Nearly Half of US Smartphone Platform Market Share
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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 |

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