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Digital

19

Aug

Social Media: The Double-edged Sword

by Jared Campion
Managing Director, The Wa Group K.K.

One of the big social media phenomena of last year involved participants willingly pouring icy water over their heads. This online campaign for ALS (aka Lou Gehrig’s Disease) research was started accidentally, went viral, and brought in over $100 million in about one month.

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25

Mar

Japan’s Biggest Pop Star is Not Even Human

By Debbie Howard

 

She has over 100,000 original songs under her name, some of which have been top karaoke picks in Japan for several years in a row. She has 1.8mn (and growing!) followers on Facebook—more than any other individual Japanese pop star or pop group. She has sold out concerts around the world and has served as the face for such top global brands as Louis Vuitton, Google, and Toyota.

But she’s not human.

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14

Sep

Playing Its Own Tune

Despite changes Worldwide, the music industry here is still driven by CDs

By Dominic Carter

 

Many a time it has been said that Japan likes to do things its own way. And nowhere is this truer than in the music business. In the past decade in Western markets we have witnessed an almost complete transformation in the landscape of the music industry.

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24

Nov

Facebook & Social in Japan

By Dominic Carter

 

At the beginning of 2011 The New York Times wrote a piece with a headline “Facebook Wins Relatively Few Friends in Japan”. At the time it seemed like Facebook had failed to ignite anything like the kind of addictive behaviour it had everywhere else in the developed world. Although Twitter had been growing strongly, for more involved interactions with their peers Japanese seemed to be studiously ignoring Facebook in favour of locally developed platforms, led by Mixi. What a difference a year or two makes. Fast-forward to the end of 2012 and Facebook appears to be catching on like wildfire, as it has in country after country around the world. So, Japan is not so different after all?

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21

Aug

August 2012 Fashion

By Dominic Carter

 

In the past decade, Japanese retail has undergone a series of developments that have seen it come closer into line with the retail landscape in other advanced countries.  Important changes have included, of course, the popularization of the Internet as a sales channel, but also the continued decline of the traditional Japanese department store format that had held sway for most of the 20th century. At the high end, recent years have seen an erosion in the position held by foreign luxury brands, which heretofore had counted on Japan as one of their key sales drivers and pioneered the notion of “mass-luxury”.

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21

May

Bricks-and-Mortar Retail Scene Climbs to New Levels to Attract Consumers

By Debbie Howard

 

Retailers of all types are having to work harder to attract and hold consumers’ attention in the “real” versus “virtual” worlds, as consumers of all ages become increasingly engaged with all things digital.

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21

Mar

Smartphone Invasion

By Dominic Carter

 

When I first came to Japan in the late 1990s, one of the most telling signs of the country’s consumer technology progress versus America, Europe and Australia was its cell-phone network. Not only were Japanese handsets much more advanced than what was available on the GSM and CDMA systems in Western countries, but Japanese carriers had also pioneered business models such as NTT Docomo’s Internet capable i-mode, that went hand-in-hand with advanced hardware.

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20

Feb

Crisis Management and Social Media

By Dominic Carter

 

Any of us who experienced the events of March 11, 2011 and their aftermath will understand just how intrinsic social media platforms have become to the way we gather information and communicate with the world.

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24

Jan

Homeward Bound?

By Dominic Carter

 

Coming from a land of suburban castles it’s sometimes a little surprising for Americans to see the relative lack of focus Japanese place on their homes as a form of self-expression. While it would not be uncommon for ordinary home owners in western countries to spend many thousands of dollars decorating their interiors with the latest furniture, fittings and decorative items, in Japan the look tends to be much more utilitarian.

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08

Aug

In Today’s World, Reputations Hinge on Information Security

By Debbie Howard

 

Two recent high-profile data breaches – at Sony Corp. and U.S. marketing firm Epsilon – have once again highlighted the critical importance of information security. Each of these incidents was referred to as the largest and/ or worst information leak in history and affected millions of people, if not hundreds of millions.

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