Do Not Read Until Monday – August 21

Gripped with eclipse fever? Check out Sarah Schneebaum’s blog post to see how it’s shaping conversation on digital. And then check back here for the week’s happenings on Monday.


Ecommerce Wars: Brick-and-Mortar Strike Back!

The past week saw a couple big players encroach on Amazon while it concentrates on its offerings in video, enterprise service, smart home and – sweet jesus – Alexa can control a powered exoskeleton now?!

Dude, we *know* what you’re up to!

Wal-Mart has long been a dominant U.S. retailer, and one particularly impacted by Amazon’s commerce ‘disruptions’. However, its latest market performance reveals it’s poised to push back against the ecommerce giant, thanks to its integration of, free shipping and the launch of a grocery service.

Target also geared up to battle Bezos and Co. this week, acquiring a logistics company to help it offer same-day shipping. (They’re also opening *four* new stores in Manhattan. ) Meanwhile, it expanded its next-day delivery service, Restock, to Dallas and Denver. (Where next, Des Moines? Dubuque? Davenport?)

They’ll need to act fast though, as Amazon’s pressing further into brick-and-mortar retail with its Instant Pickup service.


This Week In Snapchat: Surf’s Up 😎

Snap started off its post-soul-crushing-quarterly-report week off a bit weakly, with a, uh, Pikachu filter? OK, you guys really gotta do better than this if you’re gonna turn it around.

Ah, that’s better. Using AI machine learning, Snapchat’s new Crowd Surf technology stitches together concert Stories to combine them into full videos featuring UGC. Applying this technology and smart thinking to other subject material could keep Snap ahead of the game.

More good news: One of Snap’s latest shows, Stay Tuned from NBC News, has garnered 29 million unique viewers in less than a month. 60% of those viewers were under 25 and 40% viewed at least 3 days per week. This is good news for Snap as a broadcast platform, but also for traditional news outlets.

Who ripped them off? Facebook, but that’s nothing new. And whoever made this.

The Verdict: Not quite a W, but not a bad comeback.


Don’t Cross the Streams: Neilsen to Include Ever-Expanding Online Viewing Data

Signaling the continued switch from terrestrial and cable TV to digital, Neilsen announced it would integrate Facebook, YouTube and Hulu distribution to its Digital Content Rankings. Coincidentally, YouTube keeps expanding its live-TV offering, now available to half of user homes.

Definitely wanting a piece of this action, Apple will be sinking $1 billion into premium video content. That’s right, a billi.

Meanwhile, in a bid to disrupt the theater-going experience, MoviePass announced you can pay them ten bucks monthly then see all the movies you want. That sounds crazy, but its CEO is a Netflix founder – so it could be so crazy it just might work.


Odds & The End


The Most Talked About Event in Human History


Do Not Read Until Monday: August 28