Being Curious Enough To Fill The Gap With Bite’s Lindsay McCormick

Lindsay McCormick is the Founder and CEO of Bite, which stands for “Because it’s the earth.” They are makers of plastic-free and cruelty-free products on a mission to become the world’s most sustainable personal care company.

Lindsay has built Bite into a multi-million-dollar company, aiming to remove plastic from our everyday routines. Her first product, toothpaste tablets, went viral in 2018, and since then, they’ve added several other products to the Bite brand umbrella.

In this episode, Lindsay and I discuss her path to founding the company and the moment she turned down a six-figure deal from both Mark Cuban and Kevin O’Leary on Shark Tank.

Listen to the full episode to learn more about filling a market gap and having an innovative mindset.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • Leaning into “filling the gap”
  • Sticking to what’s important
  • Having a “we can always be better” mindset

Key Highlights

  • [01:44] Lindsay’s favorite outdoor activities
  • [02:42] The path to founding Bite
  • [03:55] From TV to toothpaste
  • [05:52] Bite’s mission and vision
  • [07:11] Adding other products to the brand
  • [09:25] Becoming an amateur chemist
  • [11:04] Working two jobs to build Bite
  • [13:43] Presenting to Shark Tank
  • [16:12] Marketing products through advocates
  • [19:45] Experimenting with digital marketing
  • [21:54] An experience that’s made Lindsay who she is
  • [24:10] Lindsay’s advice for her younger self
  • [24:30] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [26:11] Brands and organizations Lindsay follows
  • [27:44] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers

Resources Mentioned

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Social Media Use By 8- To 12-Year-Olds Grows

This week in social media news, a new study breaks down media use by tweens and teens, YouTube starts streaming free, ad-supported TV shows, Meta’s new partnership with Vntana will enable brands to run 3D ads on Facebook and Instagram, and more.

Study Finds Watching Online Videos Is Favorite Media Activity Among 8- To 18-Year-Olds

Media use among tweens (8- to 12-year-olds) and teens (13- to 18-year-olds) has grown faster since the start of the pandemic than it has over the four years prior to the pandemic. 

That’s according to a new study from Common Sense Media that compares the frequency, enjoyment and time spent engaging in various types of media activities among 8- to 18-year-olds in 2019 – prior to the virus arriving in the US – and fall 2021 as most schools around the country reopened for in-person learning.

Why it matters: From 2015 to 2019, media use for tweens grew only 3 percent, and

for teens, 11 percent. But from 2019 to 2021 alone, media use grew by 17 percent for tweens and teens.

A new behavior the study observed is the rising use of social media among 8- to 12-year-olds. Thirty-eight percent of tweens have used social media (up from 31 percent in 2019) and 18 percent now say they use social media every day – up 5 percentage points since 2019.

Tweens’ time spent using social media is also up eight minutes a day among this age group (from 10 to 18 minutes a day, on average), with the top five social media sites tweens have ever used being Snapchat (13 percent), Instagram (10 percent), Facebook (8 percent), Discord (5 percent) and Pinterest (4 percent).

The details: According to the report, among tweens the top two media activities engaged in most frequently are watching television (65 percent do so daily) and

watching online videos (64 percent). Among teens, the two most common activities are watching online videos (77 percent do so daily) and using social media (62 percent). Forty-nine percent of teens watch television daily as well.

In general, enjoyment of media is highest among tweens and goes down among teens, with two exceptions: online videos, which appeal across age groups, and social media, which most tweens don’t use.

Some more noteworthy findings from the report include:

  • If forced to choose, 32 percent of teens say YouTube is the site that they wouldn’t want to live without, with Snapchat coming second at 20 percent.
  • Watching online videos is the favorite media activity among 8- to 18-year-olds, appealing to both tweens and teens, boys and girls, and across racial/ethnic groups and income levels.
  • Teens now spend nearly an hour and a half a day using social media but have conflicted feelings about the medium. Nearly half (46 percent) of all 13- to 18-year-olds have listened to podcasts, and one in five say they do so at least once a week.
  • Teens’ enjoyment of social media went down since 2019 (from 41 percent to 34 percent who enjoy it “a lot”), as did their enjoyment of television (down from 33 percent to 27 percent).
  • The proportion of tweens who say they enjoy playing mobile games decreased by 10 percentage points to 45 percent, while the proportion who enjoy using social media a lot increased by 4 percentage points to 12 percent.
  • While 94 percent of children in higher-income households and 91 percent of white children have at least one computer in the home, only 67 percent of those in lower-income households and 81 percent and 83 percent of black and Hispanic/Latino children, respectively, do.
  • There were no substantial changes in the number of households with at least one computer, tablet, or video game player over the past two years.
  • Twenty-six percent of tweens’ TV viewing and 35 percent of teens’ viewing happens on devices like a smartphone, table, or computer.
  • Watching videos online is incredibly popular across demographic groups, but especially among Hispanic/Latinos and young people from lower-income households, who are more likely to say they watch online videos “every day,” and who watch for longer periods of time.
  • In general, tweens enjoy playing games more than teens, especially mobile gaming (45 percent of tweens enjoy playing mobile games a lot, compared with 28 percent of teens). On average, tweens spend 1:27 a day gaming and teens spend 1:46.
  • Thirty-eight percent of tweens and 84 percent of teens use social media, including 18 percent of tweens and 62 percent of teens who say they use it every day.
  • Twenty-two percent of tweens and 27 percent of teens have ever tried virtual reality, with boys and young people from lower-income families more likely to do so than girls or young people from middle- or higher-income households
  • About one in 10 tweens and nearly one in five teens say they never read anything other than what is required for school or homework.

YouTube Starts Streaming Free, Ad-Supported TV Shows

For the first time, US viewers can stream full seasons of TV shows on YouTube for free with ads, the company announced. To complement the offering, the platform debuted new, streamlined navigation and immersive banner art.

Why it matters: The addition of ad-supported TV shows marks an expansion of YouTube’s current offering, as it already currently has over 1,500 movies from Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution, Warner Bros., Lionsgate and more.

It’s also a matter of keeping its current user base engaged. According to Nielsen, YouTube reached over 135 million people on connected TVs in the US in December 2021.

The details: US users can access YouTube’s available movies and shows and up to 100 new titles each week via desktop, mobile and most connected TVs through the YouTube on TV app.

TikTok Was The Top App By Consumer Spend In Q1

According to’s (formerly App Annie) Q1 2022 Apps Index, Instagram, TikTok and Meta saw the most app downloads worldwide in Q1 while consumers spent the most on TikTok, YouTube and Tinder during the same period.

Why it matters: The data revealed Q1 2022 to be the biggest first quarter ever for consumer spend at $33 billion. Apple users still spend the most – 65 percent of the quarter’s total $33 billion. The figure was even higher among non-gaming apps – 73 percent of spend on iOS versus Google Play, as in-app subscriptions moved into the mainstream. 

Overall, forecast consumer spend on apps to have grown over 40 percent in two years, with the total for iOS up nearly 42 percent from Q1 2020, and 44 percent up for Google Play.

The details: Google Play drove the majority of the quarter’s app downloads, with Android users installing 28.5 billion of the 37 billion apps in the period — a 16 percent rise year-over-year.

iOS dominated the consumer spend chart  reverse is true when it comes to consumer spend, consistent with the previous five quarters, according to For every $1 spent by users on Google Play, users on iOS spend $1.80. The balance tips even further in non-gaming apps – iOS accounts for 73 percent of consumer spend.

In the iOS space, consumer spend in medical apps is set to grow 23 percent quarter-over-quarter

In terms of spend and active users, TikTok reigns supreme. The app was number one for spend and average monthly active users, while its sister app CapCut (which lets users edit their videos) landed number seven for breakout active users.

As for monthly active users, in Q1 2022 Snapchat moved from number seven to five 7 to in the download chart from the previous quarter. Shopee moved up from 10 in terms of downloads to seven.

Meta Teams With Vntana So Brands Can Run 3D Ads On Facebook, Instagram

Thanks to Meta’s new partnership with Vntana, brands will be able to upload 3D models of their products to Facebook and Instagram and easily convert them into ads, reports Reuters.

Why it matters: The partnership brings Meta one step closer to realizing its goal of creating the metaverse, a project it said could take up to a decade to complete. 

It also gives brands an incentive to start strategizing on how their stories and products come to life in the metaverse and whether it makes sense to invest in engaging users there.

Meta previously teamed with Modiface and PerfectCorp to help beauty and cosmetic brands run 3D and augmented reality ads.

The details: Facebook and Instagram users who see a 3D ad while browsing on desktop or mobile can interact with an image of a handbag, for example, and move it around to view the item from all angles.

According to Vntana chief executive Ashley Crowder, before Vntana’s integration with Meta, advertisers would need to reformat 3D files to be compatible with Meta’s ad systems. Now, brands can use Vntana to easily upload and convert the files into ads without technical expertise in working with 3D images.

AMC Appoints Brian Swarth SVP Of Subscriber Engagement, Product Marketing

This week in leadership updates, AMC names Brian Swarth senior vice president of subscriber engagement and product marketing, Rafael Acevedo exits as Dunkin’s chief marketing officer, Prospect Farms hires Brooke Shields as chief brand officer, Paramount taps Steve Raizes as executive vice president of podcasting and audio and more.

AMC Appoints Brian Swarth SVP Of Subscriber Engagement, Product Marketing

AMC Networks has tapped Brian Swarth to help build and support its subscriber experience as senior vice president of subscriber engagement and product marketing.

Before joining AMC, Swarth was head of podcast marketing for Audacy’s podcast division, which includes Cadence13 and Pineapple Street Studios. Previously, he spent more than a decade with Showtime and MTV in senior digital marketing and operations positions.

Young Living Taps Lyndi Smith As Chief Marketing Officer

After a yearlong hiatus from Young Living Essential Oils, Lyndi Smith has been named the company’s chief marketing officer.

Smith previously spent nearly 20 years at Young Living in a handful of marketing leadership roles. At the time of her departure, she was senior vice president, global marketing.

Prospect Farms Welcomes Brooke Shields As Chief Brand Officer

Brooke Shields has joined Prospect Farms as chief brand officer. In her new role, she’ll advise and collaborate on product development, marketing and community engagement.

Shields will initially raise awareness for the brand’s CBD sleep and anxiety products after years of searching for her own relief.

The actress has also been appointed to Prospect Farms’ board of directors.

Rafael Acevedo Departs Dunkin’ After Nine Months As Chief Marketing Officer

Rafael Acevedo has exited Dunkin’ after being its chief marketing officer for about nine months, according to AdAge.

Before helming marketing at Dunkin’, Acevedo spent nearly 20 years at Coca-Cola, most recently as ​​vice president and general manager of the company’s tea portfolio.

Qantas Names Petra Perry Group Chief Marketing Officer

Petra Perry, former Mastercard vice president of product and issuer marketing, has been appointed chief marketing officer of Qantas Group.

Perry has been with the company for nearly six years, and most recently was chief marketing officer of Qantas Loyalty and enterprise manager of customer operations and digital.

Izumi World Hires Jamie Davies As Chief Marketing Officer

AR-powered game Izumi World has recruited Jamie Davies as chief marketing officer.

Davies joins Izumi World from Rarible Protocol DAO where he was marketing lead.

Previously, he held senior marketing roles at brands including Samsung, Verizon, Xbox and Gatorade.

Creator Plus Names Peter Sherman Head Of Marketing

Creator Plus has appointed Peter Sherman as its new head of marketing.

Prior, Sherman was senior vice president of HBO Max at WarnerMedia and also held various marketing roles at Google.

Paramount Hires Steve Raizes As Executive Vice President Of Podcasting And Audio

Paramount has appointed Steve Raizes as executive vice president of podcasting and audio. In his new position, Raizes will be leading audio initiatives at CBS News and Paramount’s podcasting unit.

Prior to his new role, Raizes worked as Viacom’s senior vice president, podcasts and live.

Smokey Bones Elevates Nichole Robillard To Chief Marketing Officer

Casual dining chain Smokey Bones has promoted Nichole (Cole) Robillard to chief marketing officer.

In addition to leading marketing for Smokey Bones’ 61 restaurant and ghost kitchen locations in 16 states, Robillard is also leading marketing efforts for the company’s two virtual brands, The Wing Experience and Burger Experience.

Robillard first joined Smokey Bones as vice president of marketing in March 2021.

Purdue University And Purdue University Global Promote Ethan Braden To Executive Vice President, Chief Marketing And Communications Officer 

Purdue University and Purdue University Global have elevated Ethan Braden to executive vice president and chief marketing and communications officer.

Braden was previously Purdue’s senior vice president of marketing and communications.

Edible Arrangements Taps Heather Schlesinger As Vice President Of Marketing

Edible Arrangements has appointed Heather Schlesinger as vice president of marketing.

Before joining Edible, Schlesinger served as chief marketing officer at the Atlanta Community Food Bank.

Spotify Expands Advertising Sales Leadership Across Europe With Google And LinkedIn Execs

According to Adweek, Spotify has recruited Yves Brunschwiler and Christine Jolly to lead sales for Central and Western Europe, respectively.

Brunschwiler will become Spotify’s head of sales for Central Europe across Germany and Austria, while Christine Jolly will become head of sales for Western Europe across France, Belgium and the Netherlands.

Brunschwiler spent over a decade at Google prior to Spotify, most recently as head of performance specialists. Jolly joins Spotify after working for about seven years at LinkedIn, where she was head of agencies and channels. 

70% Of Businesses Believe They’re Delivering Suboptimal Hybrid Customer Journeys

Consumers continue to expect seamless experiences across digital and in-person touchpoints, but a new Forrester study commissioned by Uberall shows just how difficult creating an end-to-end hybrid customer journey is for brands.

The findings of the “Reignite Growth with Hybrid Customer Experiences” study are based on a survey of over 200 decision-makers at US and European companies with 150 or more locations. It sheds light on the challenges companies face in breaking down departmental silos and offers insights into the importance of adapting to customer demands.

Businesses Lack Confidence In Their Ability To Deliver Seamless Hybrid Customer Experiences

More than half of companies are confident they are good or excellent at table stakes activities, such as making it easy for customers to find the closest in-store location online (62 percent) and responding to customers’ feedback, ratings and reviews on their own (55 percent) or others’ channels and touchpoints (54 percent).

But the vast majority of organizations struggle with more advanced yet essentials elements of hybrid customer experience. For example, 70 percent of decision-makers believe their company does a sub-optimal job at providing seamless customer journeys and consistent brand presences across all online and offline touchpoints.

Seventy-two percent also reported being interested or very interested in a platform that addresses several marketing and customer experience needs.

Customer Engagement Is A High Priority Post-Pandemic

Business as a whole has shifted since the pandemic began with many now focusing on customer relationships. As much as 70 percent of businesses reported that a more comprehensive understanding of their customers is more important now than it was pre-pandemic. 

Additionally, 74 percent of companies are prioritizing customer engagement via social media while 72 percent intend on increasing customer retention and loyalty.

Fragmented Teams And Solutions Create Fragmented Experiences

The study found that 75 percent of activities related to the beginning and end of the customer journey are managed in-house while 25 percent are outsourced. What’s worse, those portions that are managed in-house are split between a collection of different teams from customer service to digital marketing.

More than a third of businesses rely on external partners to manage tasks such as intelligent communications (42 percent), customer journey data analytics (39 percent), social listening (36 percent), and ratings and reviews (34 percent). But as the report notes, without alignment businesses risk fragmented customer experiences and inconsistent brand presence.

Many companies address problems using an array of standalone solutions, which, when combined with the fact that important customer experience data are stored away in silos, can hinder progress.

The top three standalone solutions businesses employ are social listening tools (76 percent), intelligent communications solutions like chatbots (70 percent) and ratings and review management solutions (70 percent).

In-Store Digital Capabilities Are Key But Hard To Implement

Seventy-three percent of company decision-makers feel that physical locations require digital capabilities such as QR codes, self-checkout and contactless payment to a greater degree now than they did before the pandemic. Nevertheless, 45 percent of respondents also labeled digital capabilities in physical locations as among the most difficult projects to implement.

Tracking And Analyzing Real-Time Customer Behavior Remains An Effort

Challenges with data security, team alignment and legacy technology are the biggest barriers to creating a seamless hybrid customer experience. Most businesses do an average, fair or poor job at tracking and gaining a clear picture of customer behavior across end-to-end customer journeys, the report shows. In fact, more than 60 percent of organizations struggle to get a holistic view of end-to-end customer journeys and to connect data across multiple systems.

The most critical element to consider when assessing the optimal technology solution to support marketing and customer experience at physical locations was the ability to link feedback and customer interaction data throughout the customer journey. 

One issue that often arises in this context is achieving the amount and depth of understanding required is difficult when customers’ expectations change so quickly. But real-time insights can address that issue and help companies adapt to hybrid consumers’ changing demands.


Consumers Want Companies To Deliver On Social Purpose

Consumers want companies to pursue social purposes and marketers say their firms are responding to improve their bottom line. That’s according to the American Marketing Association New York’s (AMA NY) Future of Marketing survey.

Based on data gathered from online polls of 506 consumers and 411 marketers around the US in August 2021, the report highlights the importance of corporate purpose in influencing purchase intentions and reveals consumer and marketer attitudes towards post-COVID marketing. 

Consumers say the top purposes they want companies to pursue are fair employment, anti-racism, corporate citizenship and environmentalism, and that they’d be willing to pay more for a product based on a company’s actions on purpose. 

“These findings underline what marketers should have learned after a couple of years of social turbulence: your customers are interested in what your firm is doing about issues they care about, not just what you’re selling – and you’d better respond to them,” said AMA NY president Jason Revzon.

Key Findings

  • The most important purpose that companies should be promoting is how to be a good employer with fair pay and labor practices.
  • After fair employment, consumers believe companies should promote racial equity, corporate citizenship in their communities and environmental sustainability.
  • Gen Z consumers rank racial and environmental justice as corporate priorities higher than older generations do.
  • Minorities believe racial equity is the most important social goal companies should act on.
  • Companies are listening to consumers’ needs and responding to those that are promoted most heavily.
  • Males, baby boomers and upper-income consumers stress corporate action for democracy.
  • Females, younger individuals and low-income consumers feel companies should promote women’s rights.
  • Consumers and marketers agree that “purpose packs a punch at checkout” 
  • Purpose has a noticeable effect on corporate image.
  • Consumers punish companies that aren’t particularly focused on purpose.
  • Many customers report being willing to pay higher prices for products from companies that align with the customer’s stance on socio-political issues.
  • Some consumers remain skeptical about the sincerity of corporate commitments.
  • Buyers want independent sources of information on company performance on purpose.
  • Purpose matters, so pay attention and analyze by target demographics.

Purpose has become an essential part of marketing for companies that want to retain and gain customers, especially in the US where social, environmental and political issues are at the center of many people’s lives. 

According to AMA NY’s findings, marketers must convey profit isn’t their only pursuit. Ironically, marketers’ primary motivation for doing good in the world is, usually, to drum up more business.

That makes sense given that regardless of age, gender or race, consumers have affirmed that a corporation’s purpose will have an effect on its public image and bottom line. 

The survey shows there exists a noticeable gap between the issues marketers believe companies are addressing and those that consumers feel companies should be addressing. For example, both marketers and consumers agree that being a good employer is the top-most purpose companies should be promoting. While 47 percent of marketers believe companies are addressing this purpose, only 34 percent of consumers believe the same. 

That same gap for racial equality is 10 percent, for giving back to the community it’s 19 percent and for sustainability and for a company’s environmental impact it’s 14 percent. At 25 percent, the largest disparity between marketers and consumers is diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Because there are so many issues people could care about, AMA NY suggests companies looking for alignment listen to the specific concerns of their customer base. 

Marketers have responded to the public’s sentiment by showing concern for purpose, but consumers believe independent verification of such pursuits would help the company’s credibility and therefore its bottom line.

Not all consumers are interested in the same issues. For example, Gen Z consumers—comprised of equal parts white and non-white individuals—prioritize social justice and sustainability rather than workplace purposes. They rank racial equality first (35 percent); followed by sustainability (31 percent); diversity, equity, and inclusion ( 27 percent) and women’s rights (22 percent). 

Millennials, on the other hand, prioritize a good employer (34 percent), followed by corporate citizenship (30 percent), sustainability (25 percent) and racial equality (23 percent). 

For Gen X consumers the list goes as follows: a good employer (35 percent), racial equality (30 percent), corporate citizenship (25 percent) and sustainability (20 percent). 

Baby boomers prioritize a good employer (40 percent), sustainability (28 percent), democracy (27 percent) and corporate citizenship (24 percent).

Just as purpose priorities shift with age, race and ethnicity also have an effect. White consumers rank good employer first (38 percent), followed by corporate citizenship (27 percent), sustainability (26 percent) and racial equality (22 percent). 

Black consumers are more interested in racial equality (32 percent), followed by DEI (30 percent), good employer (24 percent) and corporate citizenship (24 percent). 

Latino consumers also feel racial equality is the most important purpose for companies to address at 34 percent, followed by good employer (28 percent), sustainability (25 percent) and women’s rights (25 percent). 

Some marketers reported that their companies are active on lower-tier issues. About 35 percent say they’re seeking to promote women’s rights, 31 percent to protect voting rights and democracy, 29 percent to support criminal justice reform and 27 percent to advance LGBTQ+ issues.

Sixty-eight percent of consumers in the US report being more likely to purchase from companies taking action on the social issues they care about. Twenty-nine percent go a step further and say they’re much more likely to do so, with income and area of residence (urban vs. rural) affecting that decision.

Of the consumers that are much more likely to buy from companies they view as purpose-driven:

  • 15 percent earn under $25,000 per year
  • 25 percent earn between $25,000 and $50,000 per year
  • 35 percent earn between $50,000 and $125,000 per year
  • 51 percent earn over $125,000 per year

Companies hear consumers loud and clear, with 80 percent believing customers are likelier to purchase from companies addressing the purposes they value and 50 percent believing customers are much more likely to do so. These sentiments remain consistent regardless of the size of the company or in which sector(s) they operate. 

Nevertheless, AMA NY found that it’s the fastest-growing companies that are most likely to believe purpose matters—65 percent of those growing by 15 percent or more per year versus 37 percent of those not growing or growing by under 10 percent per year. In total, 56 percent of marketers say that purpose has helped their company become more profitable.

Not only does purpose-driven action impact the bottom line, but it also affects consumers’ perceptions. Seventy-two percent of consumers say they view firms that act on social issues in a more positive light – this holds true across age, sex, income, educational level and race. And as much as 69 percent of the survey respondents say they would be less likely to buy from a company that does poorly.

Some customers are willing to go so far as to pay higher prices for products from firms doing well on issues they care about. Forty-eight percent of consumers in the US report the willingness to do so, while 41 percent wouldn’t be willing – with income, area of residence and race playing critical roles in the decision. 

Of those consumers willing to pay more for a product based on the corporation’s actions on purpose:

  • 34 percent earn under $25,000 per year
  • 48 percent earn between $25,000 and $50,000 per year
  • 53 percent earn between $50,000 and $125,000 per year
  • 64 percent earn over $125,000 per year
  • 70 percent are Gen Z 
  • 63 percent are millennials 
  • 50 percent are Gen X 
  • 24 percent are baby boomers

Marketers‘ perceptions of consumers’ willingness to pay more, on the other hand, vary by industry and the growth rate of the company:

  • 37 percent of companies are in retail
  • 39 percent are in business services
  • 44 percent are in consumer, durables
  • 48 percent are in producer, durables
  • 52 percent are in consumer, non-durables
  • 68 percent are in consumer services

For these marketers:

  • 33 percent are in companies that grow by less than 10 percent per year
  • 49 percent are in companies that grow by 10 to 15 percent per year
  • 57 percent are in companies that grow by over 15 percent per year

Augmented And Virtual Reality Headset Shipments Grew 92% In 2021

In 2021, 11.2 million units of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) headsets shipped globally, according to new data from International Data Corporation’s (IDC) worldwide quarterly AR/VR headset tracker. During holiday Q4, half of the annual volume was shipped, capping a record year that hasn’t seen similar volumes since 2016 when low-cost VR screenless viewers like Samsung’s Gear VR dominated the market.

The dramatic growth was largely thanks to Meta’s strong Quest 2 volumes, which accounted for 78 percent of the combined AR/VR worldwide market. Followed by DPVR (5.1 percent) and ByteDance’s Pico VR products (4.5 percent), both of which are well-positioned for growth in Asian markets, notes the report. In fourth and fifth places were VR pioneer HTC and China-based online video platform iQIYI.

Meta has been leading the AR/VR space due to its offering of a reasonably priced headset. Its tactic of introducing non-gamers and businesses to the array of uses for AR and VR beyond gaming has also benefited the company, said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. 

Meta doesn’t currently have any major competitors in the AR/VR industry, though that’s likely to change in the next year or two when Sony launches its PSVR2 and Apple and other smartphone vendors enter the market.

AR/VR headset shipments are expected to grow just shy of 47 percent year-over-year in 2022, with double-digit growth into 2026, as global shipments exceed 50 million units that year. One explanation for this growth is the broader adoption of AR and VR by gamers, non-gamers and the commercial sector. IDC predicts the industry’s compound annual growth rate will exceed 35 percent by the end of 2026.

“Augmented reality headsets continue to represent a small fraction of the overall AR/VR headset market and the volumes we do see are happening almost exclusively on the commercial side of the business. Consumer AR is still largely the domain of smartphones and tablets and will likely remain so in the near term,” said Tom Mainelli, group vice president, Device & Consumer Research at IDC. 

AR is on the road to becoming a must-have for marketers, much like influencer marketing became indispensable to successful cross-channel marketing strategies in recent years. Emarketer expects ad revenues from AR marketing to reach $2.86 billion in 2022 and $6.68 billion in 2025–up from $1.98 billion currently. 

Thirty-five percent of marketers were leveraging AR or VR in their strategies in 2021. Of those marketers, 42 percent planned to increase their investment in 2022. And a tenth of those who didn’t leverage AR or VR in 2021 will experiment with it for the first time this year.

The overall AR/VR market is expected to grow to $252.16 billion by 2028, up almost $200 billion from 2021, according to a report by The Insight Partners. Some predictions go as high as $571 billion by 2025. The hardware alone will account for more than half of the projected spending.

Marketers looking to meet people where they are should keep a close eye on the space, as one emerging use case for AR/VR headsets is the metaverse.  The new digital environment will give brands new ways to engage customers through immersive experiences and shopping activations to highlight their latest products and services. Whether it’s shopping for a Gucci wearable for their avatar in the brand’s virtual plot of land in The Sandbox, bidding on artwork from Sotheby’s auction in Decentraland, or customizing skate shoes in Van’s Roblox skatepark

People are steadily warming up to the idea of shopping with AR, though it hasn’t become mainstream just yet. According to eMarketer’s October 2021 survey with Bizrate Insights, just 13 percent of US adults had ever used AR or VR to shop, up by 5 percentage points YOY. But 37 percent who hadn’t used AR or VR to shop before were at least somewhat interested in doing so.

Discussion of the metaverse is driving hype and investment around AR, VR and many adjacent technologies, but Maneilli doesn’t expect this insignificant behavior to impact headset volumes any time soon. 

New Study Sheds Light On Summer Travel, Commuting And Automotive OOH

Despite the ongoing pandemic, Americans are ready to get out and about, a welcome light at the end of the tunnel for out-of-home (OOH) advertisers. “OOH Consumer Insights and Intent – Q1 2022,” a new report from the Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA) and The Harris Poll, reveals people’s sentiment toward summer travel, commuting, different modes of transportation, seasonal shopping and more.

Whether consumers are on the road, on public transit or flying, all modes of transportation will be seeing an uptick and OOH advertising will be an excellent way to gain mindshare and drive action, said John Gerzema, chief executive officer of The Harris Poll.


First up, 85 percent of Americans are planning summer travel with personal cars as their top pick for transportation. After cars, their preferred methods are by airplane, train, bus and subway—in that order.

Roughly half of Americans and baby boomers intend on taking more vacation time this summer than they did last summer, specifically two weeks or more.

International travel is still at the bottom of the list with 49 percent reporting it not at all likely. Traveling to a different city and vacationing at a resort, beach or elsewhere are very likely for 40 percent and 30 percent of respondents, respectively.

Younger generations plan on staying local while suburbanites intend on traveling the farthest. Most will be staying at a hotel while very few intend on staying in a cabin or taking a cruise.

Assuming there are no local public health restrictions, 42 percent of respondents report being very likely to visit a beach or lake while 25 percent report being very likely to visit a national or state park. Trade shows, live theater performances and sporting events were the least popular choices.

When asked how many days they plan to vacation this summer, most respondents chose one week, though more baby boomers than the other generations chose to take more than two weeks off.

Americans are more comfortable now with all modes of transportation including commercial flights, trains, rideshares, taxis and the subway than they were in May 2020 and April 2021.

Most, especially millennials and individuals living in urban ecosystems, are generally comfortable traveling via any mode of transportation, even with the pandemic underway. Sixty-nine percent feel safe flying, 62 percent feel safe using rideshare services and 61 percent feel safe riding in taxis.

Seasonal Shopping

Among the 42 percent of respondents who find advertisements useful when deciding which product to purchase for an upcoming holiday or event like Mother’s Day or a wedding, about half were men, slightly more than half lived in cities with 1 million or more residents and slightly less than half were millennials.

The Harris Poll did a deep dive on the topic by asking consumers about OOH advertisements (i.e., billboard, outdoor video screen, poster, signage) for different events and holidays including Mother’s and Father’s Day, weddings and graduations. 

On Mother’s Day, 39 percent responded being very much or somewhat influenced by ads while 43 percent responded being not at all influenced. On Father’s Day, 33 percent responded being very much or somewhat influenced by ads while 48 percent responded being not at all influenced. About half of all respondents reported their wedding and graduation gift purchase decisions as being not at all influenced by OOH advertisements.

Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gift decisions centered around flowers and gift cards for mothers and gift cards and tools for fathers. Mothers were least likely to be gifted home furnishings, exercise equipment and special event tickets. Fathers were least likely to be gifted special event tickets, jewelry and exercise equipment.

As for wedding and graduation gifts, slightly less than one-third of respondents named gift cards as their top choice with home electronics being particularly unpopular for both occasions.

Work Commute

The report found 80 percent of workers anticipate commuting to and working from the office by spring 2022, up from 71 percent who anticipated the same in winter 2021.

Respondents were asked about their 2021 and 2022 work situations divided by season. In winter 2021, 45 percent commuted daily, 26 percent commuted to work and worked from home and 28 percent worked from home daily.

In fall 2021, more Americans commuted daily (60 percent) while the portion that worked from home remained about the same. In spring 2022, more Americans commuted daily (63 percent) as the portion with mixed schedules increased to 17 percent and those that worked from home fell to 20 percent. Summer 2022 anticipates more workers commuting (64 percent) and balancing between commuting and working from home (20 percent).

This spring, 76 percent of suburban, 91 percent of rural, 78 percent of urban 1 million+ and 84 percent of urban (<1 million) workers expect to commute part of the time. Each of these cohorts—except those living in an urban environment with 1 million residents or more—anticipates increasing the amount of time they spend commuting part of the time in summer 2022.

In spring 2022, 84 percent of Gen Z, 81 percent of millennials, 79 percent of Gen X and 78 percent of baby boomer workers expect to commute part of the time. Each of these cohorts besides Gen Z anticipates increasing the amount of time they spend commuting part of the time come summer.

OOH Relevance

Gen Z, millennials and individuals living in cities with 1 million or more residents noticed OOH advertisements at the highest rates compared to pre-pandemic levels. The survey shows that 43 percent of all respondents noticed more OOH while 46 percent did not—almost identical to January 2021 figures.

The Harris Poll inquired about annoyances, personal security and other concerns and found that 78 percent of respondents are strongly or somewhat annoyed by interrupting ads while viewing, listening or reading. 

While shopping online, 72 percent reported being concerned about their personal security and data. That figure drops to 67 percent when respondents are on mobile or desktop devices for any purpose. 

Sixty-eight percent of respondents actually ignore digital ads because of how much time they spend looking at screens. And at this stage of the pandemic, less than half of respondents are making attempts to spend less time looking at screens (phone, computer and TV).

Automotive OOH Ads

Slightly less than half of the respondents reported not recently seeing an OOH advertisement for an automotive brand or dealership. Of the 38 percent who did recall seeing one, most lived in a city with 1 million or more residents, 40 percent lived in rural areas, 38 percent lived in cities with less than 1 million residents and 33 percent lived in the suburbs.

Additionally, 50 percent were Gen Z, 49 percent were millennials, 40 percent were Gen X and 24 percent were baby boomers or older. Men (49 percent) were more able to recall a recent automotive OOH ad than were women (29 percent).

Digging deeper, the survey showed that the most interesting types of messages on automotive OOH ads were a new model release (45 percent), fuel economy (37 percent) and limited-time offers on pricing (36 percent). Leasing information was the least interesting type of message as noted by consumers.

Forty-three percent of respondents engaged with an automotive OOH ad, whether that was by visiting the brand’s or dealer’s website or conducting research online (38 percent), discussing information with family or friends (30 percent) or visiting a showroom (23 percent). Only 19 percent of respondents engaged with an automotive OOH ad by purchasing a vehicle while 17 percent leased.

This report’s findings are based on a Harris Poll survey conducted online from February 9 to 14, 2022 among 1,000 US adults 18 and over.

Challenging Vs. Disrupting With SmileDirectClub’s John Sheldon

Did you know that 60% of counties in the US do not have an orthodontist within the county? So, what do those people do when they find themselves needing orthodontic care?

This is the question that John Sheldon set out to answer. John is the chief marketing officer at SmileDirectClub where they are leading the charge with accessibility, increased convenience, and at a lower cost than competitors of orthodontic care.

In this episode, John and I discuss how the company started out as a disruptor and is moving towards becoming a challenger against their primary competitor. Listen to the full episode to learn more about the benefits of challenging the market and how the customer experience plays a key role.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The benefits of challenging the market
  • Why you should center innovation around the customer experience
  • Where data plays a role in your brand

Key Highlights

  • [01:18] How John is responsible for many marriages and divorces
  • [02:15] John’s path to CMO at SmileDirectClub
  • [05:01] Who is SmileDirectClub?
  • [07:45] Scaling as a challenger vs. a disruptor
  • [10:37] Innovating around the customer experience
  • [12:56] How data plays a role in brand story-telling
  • [15:04] Investing in TikTok as a marketing strategy
  • [20:32] Pivoting with the changing landscape
  • [23:45] An experience that defines John
  • [25:05] John’s advice to his younger self
  • [27:15] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [29:03] The brands and organizations John follows
  • [30:55] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers

Resources Mentioned:

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Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Trend Set: Cannes, Instacart And Sound On

Ayzenberg Junior Strategist Ashley Otah recounts this week’s trends.

Cannes Film Festival

The TikTok takeover. TikTok has become the official partner of the Cannes Film Festival. Other notable partnerships include MTV and The Brit Awards. The official collaboration between the video-focused social media giant and the annual film festival underscores the importance of diversifying mediums and audiences. While some viewers frequently tune into festivals, award shows, and the like, the opportunity to get a fresh set of eyes and perspectives opens up a new look into the future. Both brands win, whether through viewership or credibility. Ultimately, the partnership highlights the continued power of meeting fans and the next segmentation of viewers where they are and where they aren’t.


Recipes, but make them shoppable, Instacart launches shoppable recipes on Hearst Magazine, TikTok, Tasty, and more. The move is similar to brands tapping into people’s desires for accessibility and ease throughout their online and social media shopping experiences. The desire to shop quickly becomes a large void a brand can successfully fill by accessible click-to-cart pathways. The integration between social media and shopping continues to boom, and it points out that e-commerce is here to stay.


From the renegade to recruitment. The next generations are rewriting the 9 to 5 and what it looks like to be an employee worldwide. To many, a job is a job, is a job, and life beyond that means much more. Many new employees have onboarded virtually, worked remotely, and connected globally; the combination has created a perfect storm for shaping what’s next in the employment world. However, understanding the ecosystem is not enough, as they have made it crystal clear what they want from employers, and they won’t back down. Having a pulse on the matter at hand props brands up to create a better work culture for all, not just those bravely demanding it.

Old Navy

The rest is still unwritten. That’s right; the internet wrote old Navy’s commercial. Although comments can be harsh and unwarranted, consumers’ desire to have their feedback heard or the ability to participate in production increases brand affinity. Listening and leaning into what is being said does not have to be a negative experience. Instead, it offers an opportunity to include fans and make new and groundbreaking experiences.


There is no denying TikTok’s influence in the music industry as many songs have skyrocketed, and users cite that is how they find the latest music. Recently, the app has launched “SoundOn,” allowing users to upload music directly to the platform. The new addition is free of charge and rivals the paid experiences that many competitors are now offering. Giving power to the people who deserve it is how industries are rightfully moving towards. The transitions are a small glimpse into the democratization the future holds.

TikTok And Oracle Address US Data Security Concerns With Possible Deal

This week in social media news, TikTok and Oracle approach a potential deal to mitigate US data security concerns, TikTok expands the pilot of its Stories feature, Twitter tests a new clipping tool for Spaces and more.

TikTok May End Up Storing Its US Data On Oracle Servers

In an effort to address US regulatory concerns over TikTok’s data integrity, TikTok and Oracle are nearing a deal that would make it so the latter stores US users’ information without TikTok parent company ByteDance having access to it, reports Reuters

Why it matters: The agreement in discussion comes a year and a half after the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CIFU) ordered ByteDance to divest TikTok due to fears China’s government could collect US users’ data. While the order wasn’t enforced after President Joe Biden succeeded Donald Trump last year, sources tell Reuters CIFU still has concerns over data security at TikTok.

The details: Under the new proposed partnership, Oracle would store all of TikTok’s US user data on its data servers and a dedicated US data management team of hundreds of people serving as a gatekeeper for US user information will be formed. The companies are also discussing a structure under which that team would function autonomously and not be under TikTok’s control or supervision.

Currently, some of TikTok’s data is stored on Alphabet’s Google Cloud.

TikTok Expands Pilot Of Stories Feature

TikTok will be expanding the pilot of its Stories feature, which the app tested in summer 2021.

Why it matters: With TikTok Stories, brands will have more opportunities to reach users and the freedom to showcase their products and services in ways that don’t necessarily follow the short-form, quick style of content that users have come to expect in their For You feeds.

The details: Like Instagram Stories, TikTok Stories last for 24 hours before being automatically deleted. They appear on users’ For You pages and can be accessed by navigating to a user’s profile and clicking on their profile picture. 

TikTok doesn’t currently allow the poster to view who viewed their Stories, as Instagram does, but they can see how many people viewed them. 

Only some users will have access to this feature, and, according to TechCrunch, only users with the feature currently can view others’ Stories.

Twitter Tests New Clipping Tool For Spaces

Twitter has begun testing a new clipping tool for Spaces, its live audio conversation function, the platform announced in a tweet

Why it matters: The new tool will give users’ Spaces more exposure and the ability to tease a part of their live audio conversation rather than the entire recording. 

It comes as pandemic-related restrictions start to ease and users who once enjoyed live audio rooms on the platform need incentives to stay.

The details: Select Spaces hosts on iOS will now be able to clip 30 seconds of audio from a recorded conversation to share on Twitter. Currently, all iOS users can view and listen to Spaces clips on their timelines while access will open up to Android and web users soon. 

Twitter will expand the new feature to all users beyond just hosts in the near future. Currently, hosts can create any number of audio clips, with each one living on the platform for 30 days.

Pew Study Shows Motive Of Twitter Users Who Tweet Infrequently

For its latest study, Pew Research Center set out to uncover the motives of Twitter “lurkers,” or users who have posted an average of fewer than five tweets per month since they first created their account, compared with frequent tweeters.

Why it matters: Pew’s findings about Twitter lurkers could prove useful for brands looking to capture an audience they thought never existed but is actually active behind the scenes. For example, Twitter lurkers are more likely than active users to say the most important reason they use the platform is to see different points of view. This cohort also uses Twitter primarily as a way to stay informed.  

The details: According to Pew, about 60 percent of infrequent tweeters are ages 30 to 49—nearly double the share among more active tweeters. Comparatively, adults under 30 account for just 14 percent of lurkers but make up 41 percent of more active users.

Twenty-one percent of lurkers say they visit the site every day, compared with 55 percent of more active tweeters. Another 38 percent of infrequent tweeters say they visit weekly, if not daily. The remaining 41 percent visit only a few times a month or less often.

When asked whether they use Twitter to express their own opinions or to see what others are saying, 76 percent of lurkers say they use the platform primarily to see what others are saying, according to Pew. Just 6 percent primarily use the platform to express their own opinions.

Replies to other users account for roughly half percent of lurkers’ tweets, compared with 30 percent of those from more frequent tweeters.

Snapchat’s New Custom Landmarkers Feature Aims To Inspire Local AR Experiences

Through its new Lens Studio feature Custom Landmarkers, Snap is giving creators the ability to develop community-driven augmented reality (AR) experiences for places they care about including statues and storefronts.

Why it matters: The platform says the feature is part of its efforts to grow its AR platform, Lens Studio, and give its community of 250,000 Lens creators—which have collectively made 2.5 million lenses that have been viewed more than 3.5 trillion times—more ways to create experiences.

The details: The AR experiences built via Custom Landmarkers are discoverable through physical Snapcodes displayed at the landmark or on a Lens creator’s profile.