Each week, Padilla’s Insights + Strategy team stands at the intersection of people, culture and brands to bring you five stories that you can read in five minutes.
1. Covering climate change collaboratively
News organizations across the globe are partnering to cover climate change. Why should you care? Over 170 publications have agreed to produce or share high-quality stories covering climate change leading up to the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York on September 23rd. The idea behind the collaborative effort is to show their combined readership (of millions) the magnitude of the issue. However, what is most interesting about this initiative is that rather than competing, they are working together to cover an important topic. Even though each organization can share as much or as little as they want, we believe we will see more efforts like this as news outlets look for ways to serve their audience while also navigating the new realities of a digital-first newsroom. [Columbia Journalism Review]
2. Kentucky Faux Chicken
For one day and at one store, KFC will be serving fried plant-based “chicken” nuggets and boneless wings through a partnership with Beyond Meat. Why should you care? While others, like Burger King, launched nationwide, KFC is taking a slower approach. For everyone who purchases anything at this particular Atlanta test store, they will offer samples of the faux chicken products. This is a smart approach because it attracts press coverage while reducing the risk of a failed launch by getting feedback from patrons (and a store) first. [The Verge]
3. Doritos sans logos
Doritos’ new “Another Level” campaign will not include its logo. Why should you care? Doritos wanted to reach Gen Z, but believes because they grew up with “ad-free digital content”, traditional ads and logos don’t speak to them. While many brands are making their ads less “promotional” or “traditional”, this is a fairly radical approach. Because the chip bags will still feature their iconic colors and the product is well-known, they are well-positioned to pull this off, but it will be interesting to see what challenges they face embracing a logo-free brand. [The Wall Street Journal]
4. Special editions
People are lining up for blocks to get the New York Times’ special publication, the “1619 Project”. Why should you care? It’s not everyday people are so eager to get their hands on a newspaper they will wait in an endless line or going from bodega to bodega to get a copy. Certainly the content, the reporting, the perspective and much more makes this incredibly special. However, other publications should take note – tell a good story born of solid reporting about a compelling topic and people will come. [Nieman Lab]
5. Keeping it local
Obituaries are one of the few consistent revenue streams for many local papers across the United States. Why should you care? Closures of large, once highly successful local newspapers have shown us this year both how important local news is and how challenging it is to stay afloat. When the major source of income for a local newspaper is obituaries, that’s just…well, sad. Recent studies have shown that local news is a more trusted source and plays a critical role in having a functioning democracy where the difference between facts and fiction are understood. Brands and people rely on local news, so finding a way to make it sustainable is not only good for democracy, but a valuable part of brand strategy. [Axios]
For more insights on communication and brand strategy, industry trends and more, subscribe today to the Weekly Buzz here.