Posts tagged with "Nielsen"

Make-up that is ‘self’-centered is L’Oreal’s next big bet

January 9, 2020

France’s fashion sense is timeless, simple, and elegant—but it is not entirely unobtainable. In fact, L’Oréal—the Paris-based beauty group— is betting big on its next product to help women everywhere transform themselves in a style that is uniquely and solely their own.

It’s a tiny device that’s only 6.5 inches tall and weighs just over one pound, but will enable makeup mavens to create personalized cosmetics at home, Fortune Magazine reports.

At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this month, the French cosmetics and personal products giant will debut a new hardware device called Perso, which whips up compressed beauty formulas from physical cartridges to create on-the-spot skincare, lipstick, and foundations.

Think of it like a mini makeup Keurig, Fortune suggests—but, instead of getting a specialized espresso drink, you’ll be creating a unique pink lipstick or skin cream.

It’s a long-term relationship with the consumer,” Guive Balooch, head of L’Oréal’s Technology Incubator, told the magazine in an interview on the show floor.

For skincare, Perso’s app will take into account the local air quality, temperature, humidity, and other factors that fluctuate and affect the skin. It then creates a recipe that even adjusts depending on if you are applying the skincare formula in the morning or the evening.

Perso’s hardware features a proprietary motor system located at the top of the device, which moves and compresses the formula from the cartridges at the base of the machine in an upward motion to the dispensing tray above for a clean application.

The lipstick option is more focused on playful trends. Perso has a base of three different colors: light pink, red, and purple, and to create a shade, users can take a picture of themselves and the app will then recommend a shade based on hair color, clothing and skin tone. Users can also create shades based on what’s trending on social media at the time.

Perso is essentially all about tech-enabled personalization, a trend making waves in a variety of consumer product categories, including apparel, food and beverage, and footwear.

“Everyone understand the value of personalization and no one owns that more than beauty because it is in their foundation,” Genevieve Aronson, VP of Communications at Nielsen told Fortune Magazine.

Embracing personalization is a way for beauty makers like L’Oréal to boost the industry’s sales. In-store beauty sales total approximately $37 billion in the U.S. market, but annual growth is reported at just 1% over the past two years, according to Nielsen. And yet personalized products are 1.7 times more likely to drive sales, says Aronson. So placing a greater emphasis on personalization can potentially help jolt beauty sales.

“The only way to achieve beauty for all is through technology,” says Balooch. “You can go to a [makeup] counter and find 40 to 50 shades of foundation. But the reality is, there are far more people with different shades than those options.”

In fact, testing for Perso hit a bit of a snag during the development process when Balooch and his team realized that the application wasn’t quite nailing skincare recommendations for individuals with darker skin tones. “It was a lot harder than we had anticipated,” Balooch says, adding that for foundation, 50% of women say they can’t find the exact shade they’d like at the store.

So L’Oréal spent an additional six months testing the product with 400 women, varying from very light to very dark skin. “We realized we had to measure peoples’ skintones, put the product on skin, and then achieve the match,” says Balooch.

Still, some key details need to be ironed out for Perso. Balooch says L’Oréal hasn’t yet solidified distribution for the Perso system and no-pricing structure has been set for the device or the cartridges that would need to be re-ordered over time. The goal is to launch the technology in 2021.

Research contact: @FortuneMagazine

Mochi ice cream goes mainstream

December 10, 2019

Walk into any supermarket today and you’ll find what used to be exotic edibles: They are called mochi—and they are small, frozen, bite-size balls of ice cream encased in rice dough.

In just the past three years, this finger food confection has evolved from an exotic niche dessert to a mainstream product, popping up nearly everywhere, including malls, street fairs, and major supermarket chains, CNN reports.

Mochi was invented in the United States nearly three decades ago, and was originally made using ice cream flavors with an Asian flair.

“It’s been around since the 1990s, but mochi ice cream was mostly available in specialty Asian food stores or on menus of Japanese restaurants in flavors like green tea, red bean and mango,” said Russell Barnett, a food industry veteran and chief marketing officer of Los Angeles-based My/Mo Mochi.

To help bring it to the masses, My/Mo created a flavor list most consumers felt instant familiarity with, such as chocolate sundae, S’mores, cookies & cream, strawberry, double chocolate and mint chocolate chip.

“I grew up eating vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream. Green tea and red bean weren’t a common part of the flavor profile in most households,” he told CNN.

Barnett recognized the inherent appeal of mochi ice cream to Millennials, a group he calls “a snacking generation.” Mochi is a portion-control snack of about 110 calories per ball, easy to hold and eat on the go. “We just retooled and adjusted it for today’s consumers,” he said.

My/Mo Mochi ice cream (which is gluten-free with some dairy free varieties) is produced at a manufacturing facility in Los Angeles and sold in packages of six, CNN reports. They’re also sold individually in portable freezers that Barnett calls self-serve “ice cream bars.”

Currently, My/Mo Mochi is now available in 20,000 stores nationwide. “We are in Target, Kroger, Walmart and everything in-between,” said Barnett. “We are reaching the masses where they shop.”

Competing mochi ice cream brands include Bubbies, Maeda-En and Mr. Mochi, but the My/Mo Mochi brand has captured close to 90% of market share, according to data from Nielsen. The brand’s sales were $175 million in annual revenue in 2019, according to Barnett.

Research contact: @CNN

A Danish startup offers underwear you can wear for weeks without washing

December 26, 2018

Only four men in their twenties would have come up with this concept: Underpants that don’t need to be washed for weeks.

What’s more, these undergarments work so well at repelling dirt and disgusting smells that even Mom would approve (considering you might end up in an emergency room someday).

That’s right. Four Danish innovators created a company in 2015 called Organic Basics—and it’s not about sloughing off on basic chores, like doing the wash. Instead, their innovative, continuously wearable, organic cotton garments are infused with a silver formula coating designed to kill 99.9% of all bacteria and odor—and to make frequent washing noncompulsory.

“It works. You can wear our underwear much longer before washing. You save time and money while we reduce the waste of water and energy,” 27-year-old CEO and Co-founder Mads Fibiger explains.

The team came up with SilverTech after one year of research, they explain on their website: “By spinning sustainably sourced silver thread directly into our Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified organic cotton, we were able to create heat-regulating, antibacterial, odorless underwear, socks, and tee-shirts that could be worn for longer before washing.

“SilverTech became the most crowdfunded fashion campaign in Scandinavia, so we knew very quickly that we were onto something,” they say. “Our women’s SilverTech collection launched the following year and received a similar amount of hype.”

And now, Organic Basics is back with a new generation, Silvertech 2.0—or SilverTech Active. “With SilverTech Active, the founders say, “we simply believe that working out shouldn’t hold you back.

The new underwear is made from sweat-wicking recycled nylon infused with the sustainable silver treatment Polygiene for odor control.  The safe, bluesign-approved treatment is made from recycled electronic, industrial, and photographic silver waste. It uses low concentrations of silver salt (silver chloride) to keep the fabric fresh.

“We use mechanically recycled nylon which is extremely sustainable as a textile choice. The nylon’s raw material is made from mechanically recycled nylon developed in Italy from post-industrial waste fiber, yarn from spinning factories, and waste from weaving mills. And we use a seamless knitting technology—making the garment comfortable to wear even for longer periods of time.”

According to an article by Business Insider, Organic Brands is betting on a younger generation of consumers to choose their sustainable underwear over iconic brands like Calvin Klein and Diesel.

And time seems to be on their side. A 2015 study from Nielsen shows that 66% of global consumers are willing to pay more for a sustainable brand, and among Millennials that number is even higher, 73%.

The underwear is not cheap, so it’s a good thing that these garments are long-lasting: A two-pack of SilverTech Boxers for men costs $64 while a two-pack of Thong for women goes for $56. So far, the company has sold more than 200,000 underwear products to approximately 50,000 customers.

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It’s open season on pumpkins

August 21, 2018

Orange you glad it’s almost fall? Just as sure as the leaves begin to change color, Americans will start hankering for all things pumpkin spice.

Starbucks first offered its popular the pumpkin spice latte in 2003. But, according to Nielsen, the pumpkin trend really took off during the 2013-14 fall season, when pumpkin products, alone, brought in $361 million in the United States. That represented a 79% uptick from 2011.

At the top of the pumpkin-flavored best-seller list is pie filling; followed by pumpkin-flavored ice cream and coffee. Even pumpkin-infused beer sales have taken off—up by more than 1,500% during the last decade, The Odyssey Online reports.

Now, Refinery 29 has done a survey of the new pumpkin products we’ll all be munching in just a few weeks—among them, the following:

  • Smashmallow Pumpkin Pie: Smashmallow describes its product as “a premium snacking marshmallow made with organic cane sugar and natural ingredients.” Now, the company says, “Our favorite artisanal marshmallow is jumping on the autumn food trend bandwagon with this new organically made pumpkin pie flavor.” Available:Now at Target in-store locations and online. Price$3.79 (per pack).
  • Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Cookie Straws: Not content with its popular pumpkin spice latte, Starbucks has added another season offering to its shelves. The company now makes cookie straws from toasted white chocolate and pumpkin spice-coated wafer cookies. AvailableNow at Starbucks locations nationwide. Price: $6.99 (per 20-pack)
  • Pumpkin Spice Noosa Mates: Noosa started offering its creamy pumpkin yoghurt made from real pumpkin and spices last fall, and this year it is teaming up with granola-maker Purely Elizabeth to add crunchy topping made from white chocolate chips and pumpkin seeds.
    Available:Now at Target and Whole Foods. Price: $2.49 (per cup)
  • Kellogg’s Pumpkin Spice Frosted Flakes: Even Tony the tiger is getting in on the act, with a limited edition pumpkin-spice flavored Frosted Flakes—described as “a bowl of crispy golden cereal coated in caramelized pumpkin, allspice, and ginger flavors. Available: Now at mass retailers and grocery stores nationwide.Price: Price varies upon location.
  • Godiva Pumpkin Spice Truffles: Godiva has taken pumpkin upscale, with individually wrapped milk chocolate truffles filled with creamy pumpkin spice ganache. Available:September 10 at Godiva store locations and online. Price: $4.95-$11.95 (per 10- and 22-piece boxes).
  • Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Flavored Ground Coffee K-Cup Pods:
    If Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Caffé Latte K-Cups from years past were a little too sweet, then its new simpler version of the fall flavor infused with notes of pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg should do the trick.
    Available:Now at Starbucks locations. Price: $9.99-$11.99 (per 10- to 16-packs).
  • Bobo’s Pumpkin Spice Oat Bar: These small-batch oat bars from a family owned, mother-daughter company will be debuting in a brand new sweet pumpkin spice flavor come fall. Available: September online. Price: $29.88 (per 12-pack)

Research contact: @LizButtchin

Meal kit mania: Feasts for foodies

March 30, 2018

Most of us would love to be gourmet cooks, if we only had the time, money, knowledge, and flair that are required. But now, as long as you have the money and a few pots and pans at home, you can pretend to be Martha Stewart and nobody will be the wiser.

Indeed, a plethora of companies are competing to help you prepare an epicurean feast—among them, Plated, Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, Home Chef, Purple Carrot and Peach Dish.

While the food retail landscape isn’t one that sees an over-abundance of frequent, market-shifting innovation, meal kits are proving to be just that, according to polling of U.S. households by Nielsen—which has discovered that fully 25% of the U.S. population would consider trying a meal kit within the next six months and that 9% (or 10.5 million households) have done so already.

Of the 9% of Americans who have tried a meal kit, 6% have purchased exclusively online. And as a result, online meal kit companies are seeing tremendous growth.

These new companies are capitalizing on consumer desires for fast and fresh, in addition to the growing popularity of pre-portioned ingredients for complete meal prep at home.

What’s more, traditional retailers also are enjoying success with a range of in-store meal kit offerings. Notably, in the year ended 2017, in-store meal kits generated $154.6 million in sales, posting growth of more than 26% year-over-year. For context, total brick-and-mortar sales for center-store edibles (grocery, dairy, frozen foods) dipped 0.1% last year to $374 billion.

Interestingly enough, the Nielsen study found that more than one-fourth (26%) of meal kit users already classify themselves as gourmet cooks. By comparison, only 16% of U.S. consumers consider themselves to be gourmet cooks—highlighting the notable appeal of meal kits to this consumer segment.

On the flip side, 15% of Americans consider themselves frozen foodies, yet only 9% of frozen food consumers are meal kit users.

What do meal kit buyers want? Nearly 60% say value for the money is extremely important, and almost half (49%) say low-cost items are important. In terms of what they experience across the meal kit landscape, 56% of consumers disagree that meal kit services are affordable for everyone.

For retailers and pure-play meal kit providers alike, this insight suggests that they need to clearly articulate the value their offerings provide when pitted against traditional options.

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Black dollars matter, with $1.2 trillion spent annually nationwide

March 1, 2018

With African-Americans spending about $1.2 trillion annually, brands have a lot to lose if they do not make a special effort to appeal to this demographic, based on findings of a poll released on February 15 by Nielsen.

Black consumers and consumers of color, alike, often represent more than 50% of the overall spending in key product categories. For example, half of the total spend ($941 million) on dry grains and vegetables in the United States in 2017 came from consumers of color. And specifically, Black consumers represented $147 million of the total spend in this category, which has recently made advances in product creation to meet the demands of diverse buyers.

Among the other categories in which diverse consumers are making inroads are:

  • Baby food, with $817 million spent last year by consumers of color out of a total spend of $1.9 billion, or 43% of the market;
  • Personal soap and bath products ($1.3 billion out of $3.04 billion, or 42%);
  • Fresheners and deodorizers ($774.1 million out of $2.02 billion, or 38%); and
  • Shelf-stable juices and drinks ($2.3 billion out of $6.2 billion, or 38%).

Not so surprisingly, African-Americans have cornered the ethnic hair and beauty market, ringing up $54 million of the $63 million total industry spend in 2017. However, Black consumers aren’t just spending on products created specifically to appeal their own demographic.

 In fact, in terms of dollars, this group spent considerably more money in the general beauty marketplace last year. Black shoppers spent $473 million on total hair care (a $4.2 billion industry) and made other significant investments in personal appearance products—such as grooming aids ($127 million out of $889 million) and skin care preparations ($465 million out of $3 billion).

African-Americans make up 14% of the U.S. population but have outsized influence over spending on essential items bottled water ($810 million or 15% of overall spending) and refrigerated drinks ($587 million or 17% of total spending).

“Our research shows that Black consumer choices have a ‘cool factor’ that has created a halo effect, influencing not just consumers of color but the mainstream as well,” said Cheryl Grace, Nielsen SVP of U.S. Strategic Community Alliances and Consumer Engagement. “These figures show that investment by multinational conglomerates in R&D to develop products and marketing that appeal to diverse consumers is, indeed, paying off handsomely.”

 “When it comes to African-American consumer spend, there are millions, sometimes billions of dollars in revenue at stake,” said Andrew McCaskill, Nielsen SVP of Global Communications and Multicultural Marketing. “With 43% of the 75 million Millennials in the United States identifying as African-American, Hispanic or Asian, if a brand doesn’t have a multicultural strategy, it doesn’t have a growth strategy.”

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Broadcast radio remains king

February 28, 2018

Have you heard? Based on findings of Nielsen’s Comparable Metrics Report, conducted at year-end 2017, radio remains the top way to reach consumers across all media platforms.

Each week, more Americans tune into AM/FM radio (93%) than watch television, or use smartphones, tablets or computers. At the same time, streaming audio offers consumers even more ways to listen across many of those same devices.

So, to really compare apples to apples, Nielsen considered AM/FM radio (both over-the-air stations and their online streams) alongside all forms of streaming audio (apps and websites that stream both music and talk). This enabled the researchers to go in-depth with audio use and evaluate listeners, using three basic concepts that can be applied across all media: how many, how often and how long. When viewed through these comparable measures we can see how AM/FM radio and streaming audio stack up.

How many: When it comes to how many, AM/FM radio continues to reach significantly more people each week than any other medium in America, at 228.5 million adults 18+ compared with 216.5 million for TV (live, DVR and time-shifted), 204 million for app/web on a smartphone, and 127.6 million for video on a smartphone. Looking at the audio landscape, broadcast radio’s weekly reach of 228.5 million also outpaces the 67.6 million for streaming audio, 35.9 million using satellite radio and 20.7 million consuming podcasts.

How often: Americans listen to radio five days per week, compared with three days for streaming on smartphones and tablets, and two days for streaming on a computer.

How long: By understanding the reach (how many) and frequency of use (how often) for each form of audio, we can calculate the time spent (how long) for both radio and streaming audio. When comparing gross minutes—the total time spent —radio outpaces streaming audio by a factor of 14:1 in an average week.

Adding up the total minutes for AM/FM radio and streaming audio equates to more than 202 billion minutes per week, with AM/FM radio representing 93% of total weekly minutes, compared with roughly 7% for streaming audio.

As the audio landscape continues to expand, more and more options will become available to consumers as technology drives all media usage forward. Through all of these changes AM/FM radio continues to reach more people and garners the most time spent with audio.

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We are what we eat: Fads and fundamentals for 2018

February 20, 2018

Healthy, socially conscious food purchases will be a priority for 67% of Americans this year, according to a recent survey by Label Insight, a strategic Nielsen partner that specializes in ingredient and attribute data analysis.

When it comes to additives, 68% of U.S. consumers that they are looking for products that are “free from” certain undesirable ingredients—from artificial colors to malt flour to sulphur dioxide—across the store, including dairy, grocery, dog food, and various non-food categories.

Shoppers also are looking for healthful ingredients that are being substituted for those that are not so good for you. For example, sales of products containing cauliflower as an ingredient grew 71% in dollars in the last year, while products with kale and cranberries also experienced positive dollar growth (13% and 9%, respectively).

Vegetables also are being substituted for meat and dairy protein sources. Sales of plant-based protein options are growing across the store, with 20.7% dollar growth in frozen prepared foods that are plant-based, 18.9% dollar growth for fully cooked plant-based meats and 14.1% dollar growth for plant-based diet and nutrition products.

What’s more, Americans increasingly are turning to food as a form of medicine, leveraging the health benefits that certain ingredients bring to the table. In the beverages category, for example, ingredients described as an “excellent source of protein,” “cold-pressed,” and “probiotic” are driving significant.

And it doesn’t end with edibles: shampoos and conditioners containing strawberries as an ingredient grew 107% in the last year.

Finally, there is one other ingredient that shoppers are avoiding: sugar. Nationwide, 22% of Americans say they already are taking matters into their own hands by restricting their sugar intake, and 50% of Americans say they are planning to eat less sugar or buy “no sugar added” products this year, according to a survey by Label Insight. And at the shelf, how products are sweetened matters. Notably, sales of products that contain non-caloric sweeteners and are free from artificial sweeteners grew 16% in dollars in the last year.

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Shop local, grocery customers say

February 14, 2018

About two-thirds (64%) of shoppers are ”very/extremely satisfied” with their local supermarket, based on findings released from the third annual National Grocery Shoppers Survey. In fact, more than 80% of shoppers prefer their local store to an online/delivery alternative, such as Peapod or Hello Fresh.

Additionally, independent grocers are strongly associated with friendly employees, quality meats and produce, and easy-to-navigate layout.

The study was conducted among 3,000 U.S. adults by Nielsen on behalf of the National Grocers Association (NGA), the trade association representing the independent supermarket industry.  This year’s survey reflects consumer attitudes and behaviors from both The Harris Poll consumer panel and Nielsen’s panel-based Independent Grocer Shopping database, a new subset of the Nielsen Homescan panel, making this the largest and most developed view into today’s independent grocery shopper, the researchers said.

“There’s no doubt that the supermarket industry is rapidly changing, either because of the growth of e-commerce or the explosion of new formats, along with shifting consumer trends. However, independent grocers are nimble enough to quickly overcome obstacles and with strong ties to their communities, they know what consumers want and need,” said NGA President and CEO Peter Larkin.

Among the other key findings:

  • E-commerce insights: Even those who prefer to shop online do additional shopping in-store (68%), with the majority of their purchases (75%) done at the store. Convenience is the main reason for shopping online for groceries, while the need to see items and concerns about freshness are the biggest barriers to online shopping.
  • Health and Wellness: The majority of Independent shoppers (63%) expect their grocery stores to support them with a healthier lifestyle. The top recommendations included: Instructions on how to cook with certain foods (28%); help with label reading including ingredients and nutritional claims (25%); and general guidance on food that gives good nutritional value for the dollar (23%). Shoppers were almost split on where healthy foods should be displayed, with 58% saying that healthy food alternatives should be shelved alongside other food items, compared to 42% who think healthy food should be in its own section, separate from main aisles.
  • Areas that are valued most: Shoppers value low prices, quality meats and produce, friendly staff, cleanliness, and offers of locally grown produce and other packaged goods. Almost 7 in 10 shoppers (67%) have no plans to switch from their independent stores.

Finally, you cannot poll shoppers and avoid complaints. Respondents said that independent supermarket operators need to improve their website usability, with consistent pricing online and offline, the same products online and in-store, and an easy-to-use smart phone app.

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Music streaming and R&B drew listeners during 2017

January 11, 2018

Americans moved to music streaming in 2017. Overall consumption of albums, songs and audio via on-demand streaming grew 12.5% year over year—and a 59% increase in on-demand audio streams offset track and album sales declines, according to findings by Nielsen released earlier in January.

What’s more, for the first time ever, R&B/Hip-Hop became the most dominant genre, representing seven of the top 10 most-consumed albums. In that sector of the industry, listeners power a 72% increase in on-demand audio streaming.

Among the highlights from Nielsen’s 2017 U.S. Music Year-End Report are the following

Finally, vinyl records experienced a renaissance at retail by experiencing sales growth for the 12th consecutive year, comprising 14% of all physical album sales. The top-selling vinyl LP of the year was the re-release of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

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