Each week we feature our “Friday Top Five” stories, highlighting five things we thought were interesting, notable, or culturally significant. This week we are showcasing stories on Adidas and their eye to grow golf in 2021; Podcast keeps Growing, Google Warns about the impacts Covid will have on its culture. Microsoft Launches Viva and all new extensions to their digital workplace. Tequila may be the drink of the lockdown. Sonos is maybe developing headphones and Nike launching slip-on shoes that you might want.
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Story-1:: Adidas has bold plans to capitalize on golf’s historic 2020
Overview: In 2017, Adidas Golf welcomed new leadership into the fold in the form of Jeff Lienhart, a veteran golf executive who previously worked at TaylorMade, to become the footwear and apparel giant’s new president. Lienhart brought with him a surprising new vision.
Why It Matters: Golf is hitting new excitement levels; it is almost Covid Proof due to the way the game is played.
- Nike embraced atypical golf audiences to stunning success, crafting out space as a younger, edgier adversary to its golf counterparts.
- Independent Brands like our friend Criquet Shirts are cleaning up with a cross over from the course to the streets
- New brands like PXG are going after an edger golfer
- And of course, a fan favorite of new golfs is BarStool Sports
For a long time, it was the only sport on T.V. For the first time in a long time, it has some real personalities, both heroes and villains. So as brands look to build their golf line, what is important
“A lot of the products that we’re building today, you could go right from the course to the gas station.”
But we are to talk about Adidas. Adidas has the number one guy in golf D.J. on their roster, new tech in their shoes, and an eye on what matters in 2021, the ability to cross from the course to the streets.
You don’t hear enough about the two brands and have incredible potential due to Mizuno and Wilson’s brand synergies within their portfolio. Very curious if these two brands can get it together to do more in 2021 and beyond.
Link: Golf.com Article
Story-2:: Podcast Keeps Growing
Overview: iHeartMedia Inc. has agreed to acquire E.W. Scripps Co. SSP +1.14 %’s Triton Digital for $230 million in a deal that will give the radio giant a full slate of audio advertising technology and measurement capabilities as it builds out its podcast business.
“Podcasting has grown quickly over the past five years, and players in the space are vying for listeners and for increasing advertising revenue. The medium now attracts more than 100 million monthly active listeners, according to Edison Research.”
Why It Matters: The migration to on-demand audio during covid has sparked an arms race across Spotify, Apple, Amazon, and Sirius. The U.S.According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, ad revenue from podcasts is projected to exceed $1 billion this year.
Link: WSJ Article
Story-3:: Google warns pandemic could hinder its ability to maintain corporate culture’ in 2021
Overview: Google highlights that the costs and operational demands of keeping their culturing may impact profits.
“As we prepare to return our workforce in more locations back to the office in 2021, we may experience increased costs as we prepare our facilities for a safe return to work environment and experiment with hybrid work models, in addition to potential effects on our ability to compete effectively and maintain our corporate culture,” the company states.
Why It Matters: What I hear when I read this article is that Google is signaling to the streets, we are going to see a dip in performance because it takes more effort to coordinate things, and there will be an increase in costs. Google is not unique here; many companies need to brace themselves for things to come when people go back to the office. Suppose organizations want to maintain culture and cost levels. They will have to pull different levers and possibly reduce physical footprints to free up capital to increase actual culture. But post-Covid, the culture will be a massive industry that will tick-up and demand as companies try to figure out the balance of a hybrid environment.
Link: CNBC Article
Story-4:: Microsoft Viva is here to help with the Digital Workplace
Overview: Microsoft Viva is an employee experience platform that brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources, and insights. With Viva, foster a culture where people and teams are empowered to be their best from anywhere.
- Microsoft Viva Topics automatically organizes content and expertise across your organization, making it easy for people to find information and put knowledge to work.
- Microsoft Viva Connections is your gateway to a modern engagement experience designed to keep everyone engaged and informed.
- Microsoft Viva Learning empowers employees with formal and informal learning when and where it’s needed, making it easier for people to learn while working.
- Microsoft Viva Insights helps people and businesses thrive with data-driven, privacy-protected insights and recommendations to improve productivity and wellbeing.1
Why It Matters: Teams unlocked the cloud and collaboration at an organization. Now you need to help people come together through the digital workplace, you need to teach people in an on-going process, and you need to serve up fresh ideas. The Viva platform does that work for users. I expect there to be a slow uptick in purchasing this solution due to the $5 per seat price tag. But down the road, M.S. will likely create an attractive bundle, and we will see greater adoption.
Link: MS Viva
Story-5:: Tequila, the Drink of LockDown
Overview: Make the switch from bourbons and Vodka and upgrade Your Liquor Cabinet With These 10 Tequilas. Karla Alindahao is a writer who covers all things luxury lifestyle—with a focus on food, spirits, and travel. In this Forbes article, she highlights the different Tequilas that are moving mountains for her during covid.
“I drank highly limited bottling and enjoyed many super-premium tequilas in the middle of some afternoons. And I regret nothing.”
Why It Matters: Tequila is fantastic, I love Tequila, but I don’t talk about it or joke about it with friends. Instead, I often say, “Let’s drink Whiskey,” but what I mean is, can we have a great bottle of wine and follow that up with some Tequila on the rocks. Speaking of Rocks, the Rock and his Covid launched Tequila brand Teremana just broke all sorts of records by shipping 400K cases in year one. Talk about someone who is cashing in on the Tequila craze. If you haven’t tried his Teremana brand, think of it as a damn good sipping tequila priced as an everyday drinker. It has quickly become my go-to both because of the flavor palette and because of taste.
Linkedin below are some Mezcal Cocktails by Karla that I will try out, COMPOSITION #9, which is a twist on classic michelada, and THE KING’S RANSOM seem of interest to me.
Story-5+:: Sonos launching a headphone
Overview: Sonos has long been rumored to be developing a premium set of noise-canceling headphones to join the company’s ecosystem of speakers and multiroom audio products.
Why It Matters: If you are like me, you have Sonos in almost every room and love how the platform works; that being said, I am still waiting for a proper outdoor speaker…. But the fact that they will release a headphone works well with my workflow, and I can control everything from the Sonos app via my laptop or phone. So when this product drops, I will probably be willing to pick up a pair at the $300 price point.
Link: Verge Article
Story-5++:: Nike has a slip-on shoe you will actually like
Overview: When you thought you’d seen it all, Nike wows with an all-new way to quickly and easily get into your shoes. The entire heel (including the sole) of the Nike Go FlyEase hinges open for a hands-free entry. Slip in, step down, and presto! You’re all set.
Why It Matters: This shoe was designed to help those who need assistance with getting shoes on and off. The design and the fact that we live in our homes will likely see wider adoption of this shoe beyond Nike’s original intent. As a SNKR Head, I am just excited to get a pair and hope that it helps those in need of easy-on or easy-off.