The Risk of a U.S. Recession

April 13, 2016
The risk of a U.S. recession has been percolating with increased intensity since the beginning of the year. The U.S. consumer has been bolstering the economy, and more accurately the global economy, for some 18 months. However, growth in U.S. consumer spending slowed in the fourth quarter of 2015, and the overall economy slowed precipitously. Economic growth in the fourth quarter of 2015 was close to zero and remained muted through the start of the New Year. Financial conditions worsened as we began 2016, with a weaker path for equities, a stronger dollar further dampening U.S. exports and higher risk spreads driven by greater uncertainty. While employment gains and firming income...

Steve Case's 'Third Wave' Blends Entrepreneurial Tips and Tumultuous Experience

April 08, 2016
Steve Case – recipient of CTA's Digital Pioneer award last year – acknowledges that his new book The Third Wave deliberately has the same title as Alvin Toffler's landmark 1980 Third Wave, which influenced Case's career goals when he graduated from college that year. The new book encompasses upbeat tips for entrepreneurial opportunities in the Internet era augmented by personal memories, including the failed $163 billion merger of Case's America Online with Time Warner Corp. Case, who now heads a venture capital firm and is involved in several initiatives to promote entrepreneurship, delivers plenty of advice about launching a business, many of them...

Beyond Mere Monetization

April 05, 2016
Sony Electronics President/COO Mike Fasulo plunged into the fundamental issue of the new entertainment ecosystem during his CES presentation about Sony’s goal for new technologies: “We are delivering the best experience and by doing so we’re making money.” Although Fasulo’s view came from the equipment perspective (largely 4K Ultra HD and PlayStation consoles), his comments touched at the heart of the new media agenda. He acknowledged that the scale of products and services are substantially different from the old days of massive nearly universal device distribution. ...

Consumers' Journey to Purchase: A Long and Winding Road?

April 01, 2016
Manufacturers and retailers alike need to know where, when and how to connect with consumers along their purchase journey; however, winning the sale is not the final destination. Understanding post-purchase behaviors is equally critical for the industry as these steps ultimately lead the consumer to return to the path to purchase. Smartphones present a convenient example of the cyclical nature of technology consumption. We research, buy a device, use it and ultimately dispose of and/or replace it with a new one. But while each product purchase journey follows this trajectory, the steps can vary greatly. The Path to Purchase A trio of Consumers’ Journey to Purchase reports from...

Journey to Purchase

March 10, 2016
CTA’s three Consumer Journey to Purchase studies (audio, health & fitness, and wireless) provides insight into the consumer’s path to purchase. These studies focus on what happens once consumers have purchased their device: returns, installation/setup, warranty, disposal, replacement, and future use and intention.

Market Research Update: January-February 2016

March 01, 2016
CTA's Market Research Department has released its bimonthly research update infographic. This edition focuses on post-purchase behavior, video consumption, 3D printing and virtual reality.

Understanding Diversity with Millennials

February 22, 2016
A major challenge facing tech marketers at CES 2016 and beyond is how to sell to millennials and create brand loyalty among the elusive group of 80 million 19- to 38-year-olds. Those statistics come from Lindsey Roeschke, lead consumer strategist with CEB Iconoculture, during a presentation on this key demographic group at the Consumer Technology Associations’s Innovate! Conference in New York last November. I’m more sensitive to the subject than most. I am far from the millennial demographic, but I am a lifelong resident of Williamsburg, Brooklyn which has become the hipster capital of the world. Some of the traditional ethnic immigrant groups who have been here for a...

New Streams From Old Media Networks

February 08, 2016
As CBS, NBC, HBO, Bravo, Discovery and other “traditional” TV networks unleash their direct-to-consumer streaming video plans, the entire idea of “television” changed. Add in Netflix’s strategy to debut its original programs simultaneously in theaters and online, you know the business is in the midst of an overhaul. Producers and distributors are taking diverse approaches to streaming strategies in these early “over-the-top” (OTT) days. CBS surprised people when it opted to reboot Star Trek on its CBS All Access streaming platform (a $6 per month subscription video-on-demand...

What to Expect in the New Year

February 01, 2016
With 2015 in the books, let’s turn to 2016 and take a look at a few of the things I’m expecting in the year ahead. We enter the New Year with downside risks that have receded somewhat, but remain pronounced. The sharp decline in global equities this past summer, rising concerns of a severe slowdown in China and other emerging markets that would precipitate a global slowdown, and the rising value of the dollar were all downside risks to economic growth in the back half of 2015. While somewhat muted, as we enter 2016, these risks remain intact. Global Economies Global economies remain unsettled. China remains of core concern, but broad concern over a global economic slowdown...
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