Packaging Matters

How much do you think a package affects your buying decisions? In 2009, Pepsi changed Tropicana’s packaging. It was disastrous. Within 2 months, sales plunged 20% and they quickly switched back to their traditional orange with a straw. Some consumers…

A Pizza Peace

New York’s pizza price war has ended. During April, we could buy a 75-cent slice of pizza in midtown Manhattan. The brief price war that brought the price down from $1.50 to $1.00 to $.79 to $.75 has ended. As…

Did Radiohead Change the Music Industry?

“The fact of the matter is that popular music is one of the industries of the country. It’s all completely tied up with capitalism. It’s stupid to separate it.”                       …

A Blurry Customer Focus

Several years ago, I walked into my local bank branch at 5:55. Knowing that they closed at 6:00, I thought I had some time but they said I was too late. I said I had 5 minutes, they said no…

Why Do Gas Prices Rise Quickly and Fall Slowly?

At your local gas station, you might be seeing some sticky prices. Although barrels of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) and Brent Crude have steadily gotten cheaper, the price at the pump has had a less steep downward trajectory. One economic study…

Pizza Price Wars

No one wins a pizza war. Having read a NY Times article about a pizza price war in NYC, I was curious about the supply side of the pizza business. So, this afternoon, I interviewed my local pizza counterman. The…

Our Shopping Habits

Our story starts during the 1990s. When Procter & Gamble (P&G) first advertised Febreze as a room deodorizer, they thought it would be an instant success. However, the households that most needed it did not respond and sales were tepid.…

Fast (and Slow) Food

Wendy’s is about to pull ahead of Burger King in the U.S. The reason? People care about their lettuce and the shape of their burgers. Led by new ownership, Wendy’s now has 11 different greens (not just iceberg), a slightly rounded bun…

Abercrombie’s “Terrible, Terrible News”

Sometimes the wrong people wear the right products. It just happened to Abercrombie & Fitch. Here is the story: According to the NY Times, it all began when an employee conveyed to A & F’s CEO the “terrible, terrible news”…

Sole Rights?

Suddenly, a red sole has become much more than the bottom of a shoe. The trademark of designer Christian Louboutin, his red soles are supposed to represent glamour, luxury and hidden status. Or, as stated by Mr. Louboutin, “A shoe…