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Mobile marketing is real, but what about augmented reality?
Written by Betsy
Thursday, 02 September 2010 16:43
Trends for 2010 had mobile marketing at the forefront, with Moxie Interactive, Millennial Media, 1020 Placecast and the Mobile Marketing Association among those predicting a significant increase in mobile Web and application advertising, including the usage of augmented reality (AR), which merges a view of the physical world with enhanced data or imagery that is computer generated. The technology ombines the mobile phone's camera, compass and GPS data to identify the user's location and field of view, retrieve data based on those geographical coordinates, and overlay that data over the camera view.
Unquestionably, mobile marketing has gained ground across CPG and retailing categories and the ability to personalize messages allows advertisers to speak to their target in a manner unprecedented by other media. TrendSpotting forecasted in its 2010 report that by 2015 a greater number of consumers will access the Internet through their phones than through a PC/laptop. This lends momentum to technology developments by leading AR developer Layar. The Layar Reality Browser "displays real time digital information on top of the real world as seen through the camera of your mobile phone". While the degree to which companies will put money behind newer concepts such as AR remains in question, first movers including Conde Nast (several AR applications for iPhone) are betting that tech-savvy consumers will jump on the experiential aspect of the technology. Moreover, earlier in the summer LG announced that it would pre-load Layar on Android devices. Combined with partnerships with Samsung, Verizon and Sprint, this means that Layar will be pre-loaded on nearly one third of all smartphones by the end of 2010 ( Seemingly, Millennial-friendly companies would join the iPhone partners as first movers, but is this overly optimistic? Questions clearly remain, including whether AR has a clear target consumer at this time, and if not, how can the ROI be calculated? The consumer perspective awaits...
Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 February 2011 12:42
Satisfying the smallest diners...and their parents
Written by Betsy
Monday, 19 July 2010 21:33

The NRA Show and the industry at large devoted much attention to key restaurant decision-makers: kids. Pleasing kids and their equally-fussy parents can make or break a successful chain, and "kid friendliness" rivals the Zagat metrics (food, décor, service and cost) when it comes to winning ever-precious family dollars.

Panelists at the NRA Show noted that the menu comes first, with 90% of parents claiming they would prefer if their children would eat healthier/better-for-you food. Branding menu items, offering adult options in sizes for both older and younger children and making the dining experience interactive serve as just a few methods to satisfy families.

A winning formula reaps benefits, including recommendation through parent-trusted resources such as Which restaurants are leading the kid-friendly charge? We share some best practices in our July 2010 Kairos Learning on Kids Dining, found at

Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 February 2011 12:44
Mainstream green, kids in charge and fast casual conundrums
Written by Betsy
Thursday, 15 July 2010 23:59

The National Restaurant Association Show in May 2010 highlighted "green as a direction, not a destination", with restaurant owners/operators and foodservice consultants in agreement that "going green" hits on a variety of shades. This corresponds to not only to diverse capabilities of those implementing practices but also to the varying expectations of consumers. 

An interview with Green Restaurant Association (GRA) member Bleeding Heart Bakery in Chicago noted that green consumers are a formidable group and show strong loyalty toward restaurants practicing sustainable practices. Key players note that ultimately, green will be less a choice than a mandate, but that mandate has not yet come from consumers, based on research by Kairos Consumers. Consumers do, however, have some specific ideas regarding ideal menu options, with looming nutritional legislation somewhat diluted by the throes of the recession.

A substantial portion of consumers dining out-of-home continue to indulge - with minimal guilt - rather than count calories, fat grams or sodium content, noting that the experience is a treat. What is the connection between green and healthy, if any?

 Find out in the July 2010 Kairos Learning on Sustainability in U.S. Consumer Foodservice at

Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 February 2011 12:46
Beautiful on the inside = active ingredients on the outside
Written by Betsy
Thursday, 15 July 2010 23:54

As the natural and organic cosmetics arena becomes increasingly crowded and distribution goes mainstream, Kairos Consumers sought to investigate the relevance of product claims and retail positioning to consumers. These products command a growing presence in not only Trader Joe's and Whole Foods but also drugstore chains like Walgreen's and CVS and beauty retail chains including Sephora.

Visits to a diverse range of retailers illustrated that organic as it relates to cosmetics - in brand names and on packaging - seemingly lacks a clear definition, with even sales managers struggling to qualify or quantify the term with ingredient verifications and percentages.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 February 2011 12:47
Organic fresh produce highlights a retailing success
Written by Betsy
Thursday, 15 July 2010 12:08

While product labelling was relatively minimal in major grocery retail and healthfood chains visited by Kairos Consumers, USDA certification seems to inspire consumer confidence and offer a clear indicator of which products are organic. The key to the success: overall consumer awareness of the merits of organic fruit and vegetables...and the danger of pesticides.

Last Updated on Monday, 25 April 2011 12:57
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