Weekly Roundup

A roundup of the industry news and insight that got SoundOut HQ talking this week



Woke brands walk a thin line with ‘moral merch’

Brands that consumers see as having a positive impact grow at twice the rate of other brands.

Getting behind a cause can be a double-edged sword, as brands run the risk of coming across as cynical.

Evidence shows that having brand purpose is not a bad thing, but using purpose as a gimmick could be.


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M&S launches packaging-free concept encouraging users to bring their own containers

In this latest sustainability pus customers are required to bring their own containers to fill up with goods, doing away with packaging altogether.

Items including rice, pasta, cereal, nuts, lentils, couscous, raisins, sultanas and chocolates will all be priced 10 per cent lower than their pre-packaged alternatives as a result.

Customers can either bring their own container, buy a £7.50 reusable container, or fill up a paper bag before taking them to a weighing station to be priced.

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The candle that proves even Goop can outdo itself

Gwyneth Paltrow and her lifestyle-commerce brand Goop have made a name over the years for pushing the boundaries and ruffling some feathers. And the brand's latest home item is no exception.

Goop is selling a candle with, er, a very unique scent. The product, which "smells like my vagina," according to the description, is made with geranium, citrusy bergamot, cedar, Damask rose and ambrette seed.

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Nordstrom to carry Kim Kardashian West's shapewear brand

Nordstrom is delving further into a direct-to-consumer strategy by partnering with Kardashian West's shapewear line.

The retailer has worked with other trendy players in the DTC space, including Glossier when the two launched "shopping experiences" at Nordstrom locations in December, which are scheduled to close Feb. 16. The department store has also collaborated with luggage brand Away, denim brand Revtown and sustainable fashion company Everlane.

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Inside the Williamsburg penthouse made for Instagram influencers

In a luxury building near the South Williamsburg waterfront, there's an immaculately designed three bedroom, three and a half bath penthouse that rents for $15,000 a month. It's fully decorated with custom furniture, Gucci wallpaper and bookshelves galore, but no one lives in this home. Instead its a space designed specifically for influencers to shoot and create content in.

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P&G, Google, Lego & more unveil plan to suffocate ‘harmful’ content

Some of the world’s biggest brands – including Mars, P&G, Adidas, Lego and Unilever – have outlined a plan they hope will ultimately suffocate harmful content online by ensuring those spreading it have “no access” to advertiser dollars. The ultimate aim of the three-pronged strategy is to prevent advertisers' media investments from fuelling the spread of content that promotes terrorism, violence or other behaviours that inflict damage on society.

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Buzz builds around made-to-order fashion manufacturing

On-demand manufacturing at scale can reduce overproduction while providing affordable personalisation to customers.

Customisation is driven by customer-facing software that works with existing machines or supply chains, which potentially lowers barriers to adoption.

Knitwear is a key area in which one-of-a-kind production is possible, but scaling is limited by the speed of the machines.

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