Should Amazon Spin Off AWS?; Mum’s the Word on Peacock: Friday’s First Things First

Plus, learn how to effectively use AR and VR

David Harbour, host of this week's Saturday Night Live, finds an unwelcome guest in his dressing room. - Credit by Saturday Night Live
Headshot of Jameson Fleming

Welcome to First Things First, Adweek’s new daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.

Would Amazon Spin Off AWS and Break Up the Company? Here’s the Case for and Against It

The most logical way to break up Amazon might not be Elizabeth Warren’s plan, which includes severing Amazon’s Marketplace and Basics line of products from the company and reversing what she calls its anti-competitive acquisitions of Whole Foods and Zappos. Experts think spinning off Amazon Web Services into its own separate $400 billion company could be the better route.

Experts made the case for:

  • Amazon could appease the regulatory gods by spinning it off.
  • Spinning off AWS could improve its standing with consumers who in turn won’t pressure politicians.

And the case against:

  • Amazon doesn’t have significant motivation right now to do so.
  • Evidence is lacking to show it’s anti-competitive.
  • There’s no precedent for Amazon’s situation.

Read more: It’s a complicated issue, and retail reporter Lisa Lacy explains many different lenses to look at the issue through.

Mum’s the Word on Peacock

Odds are you’ve already seen the NBC peacock go toe-to-toe with Stranger Things star David Harbour or witnessed its comedic chops with Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman, but that’s all you’re going to hear about NBC’s new Peacock streaming service until sometime in 2020. For competitive reasons, NBCUniversal said during an earnings call that it will not reveal much about the streaming service until the final months leading up to its launch. CEO Steve Burke said Peacock will go a different route than services like Netflix and wants to keep those plans under wraps, unlike Disney and WarnerMedia, which revealed key details with investors.

Read more: Burke did explain a little about how NBCU plans to promote Peacock, including a big push during the 2020 Summer Olympics.

Why Coca-Cola and PepsiCo Are Struggling to Clean Up Their Act as the Top Plastic Polluters

Coca-Cola—the world’s largest non-alcoholic beverage company with 500 brands under its umbrella—was responsible for 11,732 pieces of plastic waste recovered in 37 countries across four continents, more than the next three polluters combined. Brands like Coca-Cola, Nestle and PepsiCo have committed to making all their packaging 100% recyclable or reusable by 2025.

Read more: Deloitte found that 20% of consumers identify with brands based on a company’s environmental bona fides. Look for that number to keep increasing as sustainability becomes more top of mind for consumers.

How to Effectively Use Augmented and Virtual Reality in Your Marketing

Augmented reality exploded onto the scene following the debut of Pokemon Go, which was downloaded more than a billion times. Since then, a number of brands have effectively used AR and VR to solve consumers’ problems. Furniture and home improvement brands like Wayfair, Ikea and Lowe’s let customers test out furniture and paint colors in their apps using AR. Eyeglass-wearers can test out different pairs of Warby Parker frames using AR. But like any emerging technology, what’s the best way for your brand or company to implement it?

Read more: Adweek, in partnership with IBM Watson Advertising, has created a complimentary course on emerging marketing technology called the Institute of Brand Marketing. The latest lesson covers everything marketers need to know about AR and VR. Each lesson takes 10-15 minutes to complete, and so far we’ve covered topics like AI, chat bots, influencers and so much more.

Just Briefly: The Rest of Today’s Top News and Insights

Ad of the Day: Witness the World’s Most Intense Gala in Star-Studded Campaign for WWE 2K20 Video Game

In a spot for video game WWE 2K20 titled “Ballroom Brawl” by agency barrettSF, some of the biggest personalities in WWE Wrestling have been gathered for an ornate soiree at a fancy mansion.

How a Mentor Has Paid Off in Your Professional Life

Lisa Rodriguez, Chief Talent Officer, Havas Media U.S.

Early in my career I had the privilege to learn from a strong leader who taught me to think creatively, care and be a strategic leader. What I learned from him has helped guide my career and success throughout the years. To this day, he is still my mentor and friend.

Brad Casper, CEO, OH Partners

When I was a 30-something working in Asia at Procter & Gamble, the president for the Far East in the mid-’90s, Larry Dare, became my unofficial mentor. We never set ground rules. We never established that he was my mentor or I his mentee. But I think we both knew that a special relationship was unfolding over a period of a few years, countless meetings, some tough strategic and operational conversations and ultimately a ton of mutual respect. He didn’t hesitate to share his knowledge or coach me up when my preparation wasn’t comprehensive enough. He helped me get promoted more than once, and ultimately gave the final blessing that made me a general manager for the first time. He made me a more complete marketer and businessman.

Publish date: October 25, 2019 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT