d i g i b y t e s | April Edition

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AI coming to a McDonald’s drive thru near you

Look no further than the casual dining industry for early adoption in marketing. McDonald’s latest acquisition involves the $300M purchase of AI company Dynamic Yield. After testing AI technology in locations nationwide last year, McDonald’s said it will create a drive-thru menu that will update in response to things like the weather, current restaurant traffic and trending menu items. Once you’ve started ordering, the display can also recommend additional items based on what you’ve already chosen. [Source]

Considerations

For seasonal disorders and diseases, how are our HCP and consumer facing sites, apps and paid drivers reflecting where we are in the cycle? Retail companies have already perfected the “also bought with” and “you might like” product recommendations. Can this aspect of AI be used on our properties?

FDA clears wearable that does not require patient to have smartphone

The FDA has cleared a wearable for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Spry’s simple-to-use Loop wristband does not require any input or data from patients via smartphone or mobile app. Instead, HCPs are able to track their patient’s respiration rate and blood oxygen in hopes of predicting deterioration or exacerbation. [Source via Kelly Lemenze]

Considerations

95% of US adults have a cell phone, though only 77% have a smartphone. That leaves 23% of the population that are unable to use wearables that require adherence through mobile app. Are we designing digital experiences that leave out the very individuals in need of additional support? What can we do to ensure our innovations in wearables leaves no one left behind?

Shot across the bow! Lush UK opts out of pay-to-play social media marketing

Beauty brand LUSH made a bewildering announcement from their UK-focused social media channels last week that they were shuttering their social networks. They announced they were “…switching up social. Increasingly, social media is making it harder and harder for us to talk to each other directly. We are tired of fighting algorithms, and we do not want to pay to appear in your newsfeed.” After providing a few more points of clarification they closed on a final note: “This isn’t the end, it’s just the start of something new. #LushCommunity – see you there.” [Source]

Considerations

If your brand’s conversation moved from an owned handle to a singular hashtag focused conversation, what would that look like? Marketers suspect this is LUSH UK’s move to an influencer-led strategy. Although it is absolutely true that individuals receive more traction on their social media content, the irony here is influencers aren’t free (especially not retail influencers) and LUSH may need to significantly expand their social media team to manage a vast network of LUSH soldiers. But we’re intrigued, and amused by the chest beating aimed at Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Let’s see what happens next.

by Nicky Battle
Vice President, Digital Strategist


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