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World Packaging Organisation: our eye on the Awards
Apr17

World Packaging Organisation: our eye on the Awards

The well-known World Packaging Organisation (WPO) will announce the winners of the World-Star Packaging Awards 2019 next month, on the 15th of May. Considering the role of packaging on purchase decisions, we have chosen some of the finalists and analysed their packaging for you. Country Designer / Manufacturer Product Originality Packaging trend 1. Finland Jospak Oy Food trays 100% recyclable and customisable Eco-friendly...

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SEO 2019: A look at the fundamentals
Apr10

SEO 2019: A look at the fundamentals

Having recently attended a conference focusing on SEO, I thought it very appropriate to share with you the lessons to be learned for 2019. This article will detail the points raised by the various speakers who shared their knowledge of natural referencing. Summary Know and optimise your website The link Between SEO and Content Marketing In brief, the essential points of a good SEO for 2019 Know and optimise your website Before...

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Retail marketing strategy: Nicolas, Comtesse du Barry and de Neuville join forces
Mar11

Retail marketing strategy: Nicolas, Comtesse du Barry and de Neuville join forces

In the age of the digitalisation of markets, many consumers are turning to e-commerce, sometimes undermining local shops, which are particularly affected by the phenomenon of showrooming. In response, retailers are increasingly redesigning their marketing strategy to maintain their share of the market. In this article, we review the opening of the ‘Savour Histoires de Gourmets’ concept store in Vichy at the end of 2018,...

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Delhaize Fresh Atelier: analysis of a retail concept and new openings
Mar01

Delhaize Fresh Atelier: analysis of a retail concept and new openings

In November 2018, the Ravenstein Gallery, near Brussels Central Station, saw the emergence of the new retail concept of Delhaize, the Belgian mass retail company belonging to the Ahold group, called “Fresh Atelier”. The city of Louvain (Leuven) has also hosted a Fresh Atelier in the Diestsestraat since December 2018. This new store concept aims to refocus on consumers’ expectations, both in terms of their consumption...

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What’s the marketing secret behind Frank Woolworth’s fortune?
Jun18

What’s the marketing secret behind Frank Woolworth’s fortune?

The Woolworth building is one of New-York’s most iconic buildings. Not only was it the tallest building of the world from 1913 until 1930, but it also conveys the history of a brand that has revolutionized retail before going bankrupt. How did retail look like at the time of Frank Woolworth ? Frank Woolworth was a legendary businessman but also a legendary inept salesman. His inability as a salesman is told to have led him draft...

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This startup may have needed a market research before going live
Apr12

This startup may have needed a market research before going live

A Belgian startup, OneHouseStand, has launched an online platform to help businesses and individuals alike rent private places to organize their events. At first it may look like a good idea to enable private owners to make their property available for rent. But is this business idea really worthwhile? A market research may have been useful. What’s the market? In an interview (in French) with national newspaper Le Soir, one of...

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Retailer “la Halle” discovers hidden costs of loyalty cards
Apr11

Retailer “la Halle” discovers hidden costs of loyalty cards

Loyalty cards and advantages for customers are costly. I explained many years ago that loyalty should not be “bought” because he destroys so much value and, above all, so much profits. Moreover “buying” your customers’ loyalty is a short-term strategy. It’s not based on deep-rooted customer satisfaction. Just on mere financial benefits. What is really funny is to see how firms react when they...

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Flying Tiger: here’s how a unique customer experience is created
Mar21

Flying Tiger: here’s how a unique customer experience is created

If you are looking for the quintessence of customer experience, look no further. This store counts only on its customer experience to drive its sales : it’s called “Flying Tiger Copenhagen“. And believe it or not I visited one store of this Danish brand for the first time a few weeks ago. I paid a visit to the store located next to the Flatiron building in New-York. A store full of 1$ and 2$ stuff This store proposes...

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Uber wants your data to support its own (ghost) kitchen business
Feb12

Uber wants your data to support its own (ghost) kitchen business

This is one of the most interesting articles I’ve read in a past few weeks. Nick Abouzeid’s article on Medium is a excellent, well researched article that sheds light on trends in the shared economy business that are yet unknown in Europe. Abouzeid starts with a 3-part analysis of Uber’s recently launched own credit card and the strategy behind it Part 1 : Uber has its own credit card You may not know it but Uber...

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Opaque 3rd-party algorithms : a business opportunity
Nov13

Opaque 3rd-party algorithms : a business opportunity

For some businesses algorithms have become instrumental to their strategy as a whole and their marketing strategy in particular. These algorithms are a well-kept secret and businesses have emerged that sell their knowledge on the inner working of those algorithms. PageRank and SEO agencies Look at Google for instance. Their search engine (which is in fact a very sophisticated recommendation system) is constantly evolving, affecting...

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Amazon’s new business move will lock customers further
May02

Amazon’s new business move will lock customers further

Amazon looks to me as one of the most innovative companies in the world, far more innovative actually that any of the electronics giants out there which have done poorly at inventing any real breakthrough innovation for the last 10 years. Amazon not only innovates to make its logistics better, but it makes also some very smart business moves to consolidate its position on various markets. Its latest move, in the book edition industry,...

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When will the IoT market eventually crash ?
Feb22

When will the IoT market eventually crash ?

I attended the first day of Unconvention in Brussels in January and what I saw and heard made me reflect on the value of innovation. During the first set of presentation, a speaker explained the current state of an IoT project in Porto where sensors had been implemented everywhere to make the city management more efficient and life more livable. For instance sensors measured pollutants (ozone and CO2) and connected to busses’...

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Market research : should you always ask your customers ?
Jan25

Market research : should you always ask your customers ?

A few years ago one word was very trendy : co-creation, a new technique complementing market research efforts. Companies all over the world suddenly discovered the benefits of involving customers in the development of new products. The co-creation process was everything but new. Eric Von Hippel, now Professor at MIT, already involved professional users in his lead users method back in the 1980’s-1990’s to develop new...

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Vestiaire Collective opens popup corner at Mandarin Oriental
Jan20

Vestiaire Collective opens popup corner at Mandarin Oriental

During the Christmas period French e-commerce company “Vestiaire Collective” (specialized in second-hand luxury goods) opened a popup corner in the lobby of the Mandarin Oriental palace, 231 rue Saint Honoré, in Paris. The corner was opened from 12 December until 23 December and proposed some 60 objects ranging from 200€ (chanel cufflinks) to 38000€ (for a made-to-order Hermes blue crocodile Kelly bag, see picture at the...

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Great promotion for Canada at Lyon (France) airport
Aug31

Great promotion for Canada at Lyon (France) airport

While traveling in France I spotted a very nice communication campaign at Lyon Saint-Exupery airport on the occasion of the opening of the Lyon – Montreal connection. To celebrate this new connection, passengers were invited to discover North American culture (and more specifically Canadian way of life) through a series of visuals, experiences and games. Next to breathtaking pictures of Canadian nature, jerseys of the NFL, NBL (White...

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Unethical behavior : making money around terrorist attacks
Nov30

Unethical behavior : making money around terrorist attacks

At the time of the terrorist attacks in Paris in January 2015 (Charlie Hebdo) I was asked in a radio interview to analyze the merchandising phenomenon that was witnessed. All kinds of objects with the “#JeSuisCharlie” logo suddenly appeared on marketplaces like Ebay and Amazon. After the attacks on Nov 13, I was once again interviewed by the public Swiss national radio TSR to comment on the phenomenon (the interview, in French, can be...

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Don’t know how to make the buzz? This initiative will inspire you.
Jun19

Don’t know how to make the buzz? This initiative will inspire you.

Many companies (especially startups) wonder how to get media coverage. My answer is simple: amaze your prospects and go beyond their craziest expectations. I was amazed by the latest video published by Michel & Augustin. Although I’m not a big fan of their products, I must admit that they are masters in communication. The story in brief They got a call from Starbuck’s CEO office to ship their products for a presentation at the...

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Marketing strategy: should banks charge customers more?
Mar23

Marketing strategy: should banks charge customers more?

The boss of the National Bank of Belgium suggested that banks change their tariffs and charge customers for services like cash withdrawal, payments made by bank cards, yearly fees charged to have a bank account, … Is it a good marketing strategy ? Why were such proposals made when, at the same time, consumers keep losing purchase power each and every year ? If such proposals were to be implemented, what would be the consequences on...

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Inbound marketing: is video blogging the best SEO strategy for the future?
Mar16

Inbound marketing: is video blogging the best SEO strategy for the future?

I recently had a meeting with fellow blogger Patrick Hannedouche in Paris and we discussed the future of blogging together. Blogging and inbound marketing Patrick runs a blog on entrepreneurship and financing that is very successful. He has some 15000 visitors per month which is slightly above the score of IntoTheMinds. We have both a very narrow positioning that makes our respective blogs interesting for “long tail” searches. One is...

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My three recipes to increase creativity
Nov21

My three recipes to increase creativity

After 11 months of an uninterrupted race to secure new contracts, increase our market share and deliver market research, new ideas and concepts to our customers, the time had come to go on vacation and prepare for the next 11 months. Being just back from vacation what I can say is that I couldn’t really stop working. Clients were still calling in, I was interviewed by 3 magazines, send a few quotes. Business as usual except that I was...

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Pop-up stores: what do they reveal about the future of retail
Aug27

Pop-up stores: what do they reveal about the future of retail

I’ve received several interview requests during the summer to discuss the future of retail. In today’s article I want to share with you my thoughts about pop-up stores, a (relatively) new forms of retail that reflects changes in our world and changes in the way the consumers behave. 1999 : the start of the pop-up stores It seems that the first pop-up store opened in 1999 in Los Angeles. The word pop-up meant at that time a “time...

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Marketing strategy : how Tic Tac uses downsizing to make you buy
Aug06

Marketing strategy : how Tic Tac uses downsizing to make you buy

Tic Tac is a brand of the Italian group Ferrero that has a been on the market for more than 40 years. Literally everyone knows the little transparent box containing a few dozens of hard mints. In its country of origin (Italy, where it was introduced in 1969), Tic Tac is now also sold in a new packaging that fits with its time. Downsizing trends in packaging With the crisis we’ve witnessed a general downsizing of packaging to reduce...

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Mono-product marketing strategy : examples from Paris
May14

Mono-product marketing strategy : examples from Paris

In a previous post we reported on a store in Paris selling only one type of product : Éclair. L’Atelier de l’Eclair has reached the excellence and its reputation spreads online has you can see if you browse consumers’ forums. We stumbled upon  other stores of the same type in Paris “Comme à Lisbonne” Even after touring in Paris so many times, you can still miss something. This is the case for “Comme à Lisbonne”, a store...

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What does it cost to be a franchisee ?
May12

What does it cost to be a franchisee ?

The questions and myths around franchising are very present in the heads of entrepreneurs. Would-be entrepreneurs dream of creating a brand with the potential of launching a franchise, while others are interested in becoming franchisees. The question of the costs attached to the franchising concepts are however difficult to answer. Except if you take the time to do some market research and compare a 13 brands as we did below.  13...

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O2 and Deutsche Telekom create an innovative customer experience
Apr22

O2 and Deutsche Telekom create an innovative customer experience

Choosing a new smartphone, tablet or accessories can really be difficult for most customers. Not only does technology constantly evolve, but you won’t be allowed to actually touch, feel and try real devices in cell phone stores. The risk to get unsatisfied customers is high. Very high. This situation is just unbelievable. Customers about to buy a 500€ device must rely on not trustworthy sales guys and will discover when they are home...

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Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 6: let’s go digital
Apr04

Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 6: let’s go digital

We went through many different innovations during the last weeks. Some of them were centered around postal services, other were completely new but took advantage of the cost structure in place. The challenge is incredible for postal operators. If they want to survive they have no other choice than to innovate widely. In this last episode we explore the digitization trend. Postal operators have long understood that the need for paper...

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Market research : new retail store opened in Brussels thanks to IntoTheMinds
Apr02

Market research : new retail store opened in Brussels thanks to IntoTheMinds

We are glad to announce that one of our customers eventually found the perfect spot for a new creative leisure store in Brussels. L’Atelier de Myna opened on 8 March 2014 at 144 rue Meyerbeer in Brussels (Uccle) in a 400 sqm space with a large parking lot. IntoTheMinds helped the two entrepreneurs conduct their market research, identify the key success factors and build a meaningful differentiation. Thanks to the results of the market...

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Innovation in the postal sector. Episode 5 : automatic lockers
Mar28

Innovation in the postal sector. Episode 5 : automatic lockers

Here’s already the fifth episode of our series (read here episodes 1, 2, 3, and 4) on innovation in the postal sector. The postal sector is one of the most innovative and adapts constantly to new or emerging consumers behaviors. Automatic lockers is one very successful example. Episode 5: automatic lockers to better match customers’ needs and behaviors A widespread solution in Europe As you will read from the section below,...

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Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 4: returning online purchased goods
Mar26

Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 4: returning online purchased goods

One crucial challenge of e-commerce today is to manage the offline part, i.e. the delivery. Yet, not all customers order right from the first time; nor are they protected from malfunctions, defects, and the like. Getting returns right (and free-of-charge) has become a must for e-tailers as this impacts the overall customer experience. Read here the fourth episode of our series on innovation in the postal sector (you can access past...

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Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 3: new delivery options
Mar21

Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 3: new delivery options

Here is episode 3 already of our series on innovations launched by postal operators. You can access the first episodes of the series here (episode 1, episode 2). The innovation we’ll be dealing with today is driven by societal and behavioral changes. E-commerce rise can’t be stopped anymore. We are about to witness some dramatic changes industry-wide and the supply-chain providers will be put under pressure for the next decade to...

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Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 1: 3D printing
Mar12

Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 1: 3D printing

As announced in our post last week, time has come to give you a comprehensive view of innovations in the postal sector. Some innovative services may be known to you already (depeneding on where you live and how innovative your postal operator is). Most of them will however surprise you (at least we hope so) and will show you the undergoing revolution in terms of business models and revenue creation. As we explained in our previous...

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Innovations in the postal sector: business models revamped
Mar05

Innovations in the postal sector: business models revamped

The postal industry is unique. Its original business model is threatened and the industry is forced to reinvent itself. What can be observed there in terms of innovation is just unique. I met with Delphine Desgurse in Venice in late January where we use to attend the same marketing conference. Delphine is the vice-president of La Poste, in charge of innovation. Like two years ago she headed a very interesting and inspiring...

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Western Union blue ocean strategy to increase loyalty
Mar03

Western Union blue ocean strategy to increase loyalty

At the International Marketing Trends conference in Venice, Maureen Sigliano presented Western Union’s global loyalty strategy. Maureen is Vice President Global Loyalty Development & Customer Experience at Western Union and her speech, besides being highly inspiring, also shook up some established rules about customer satisfaction and loyalty.   A Blue Ocean of untapped opportunities Maureen’s speech was preceded by a...

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The innovation strategy of Edenred to conquer new markets
Feb24

The innovation strategy of Edenred to conquer new markets

At the International Marketing Trends Conference in Venice, Damien Joannes of Edenred explained the strategy of his group to diversify its activities and conquer market shares. The key seemed to be in proposing services tailored to evolving needs of businesses. The story starts with the Ticket Restaurant The story started in 1962 with the invention of the ticket restaurant in France. From 1976 until a period of geographical expansion...

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What’s App leverages habits to get loyal customers
Feb19

What’s App leverages habits to get loyal customers

Today’s post will be short. It’s an example on how to make sure you get always high loyalty rates in your business. I found this example while reading an article in the newspaper about What’s App, this wonderful little mobile application that allows some 400 million people worldwide to communicate free-of-charge with each other.   Free the first year, 0,99$/year afterwards While other apps exist on the market for the same...

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The right marketing strategy to sell products with a premium
Feb17

The right marketing strategy to sell products with a premium

While on business trip in Venice (see my earlier post) I stumbled upon wonderful postcards of Venetian monuments. I couldn’t resist the temptation and despite the price bought some to send to clients. Don’t shoot me dead … apparently such 3D pop-up cards have been on the market for a while, but this was the first time for. You can’t know about everything, right? To make a long story short these cards were so amazing : complex,...

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