Ypulse Essentials: Apple's Steve Jobs Steps Down, Department Stores Are Digital Leaders, Selena Gomez' Fan Inspired Fragrance

Apple, the hottest brand among Millennials, is changing hands (Steve Jobs — one of the most visionary leaders in marketing and technology — has stepped down as the company’s CEO, and Tom Cook, the former COO, will take his place. We have Jobs to thank for some of the most influential products today including iTunes, the iPod, iPhone, and the iPad, so what does this mean for the future of Apple? Not much…he’ll still be very involved and the company probably won’t change. In other tech news, children rarely watch TV without using other devices simultaneously. In fact, according to a UK survey, they use up to five screens at a time!) (NY Times) (Huffington Post) (The Telegraph)

- Department stores have high digital IQs (because of their impressive social media strategies, sleek site designs, and engaging mobile campaigns. Macy’s ranks as the most digitally driven retailer, followed by Victoria’s Secret, Nordstrom, and Sephora. To remain digitally-savvy, however, brands should institute F-commerce, so customers can purchase products directly on Facebook. In other fashion news, teenagers prefer brands that value self-expression and aspiration, rather than ones with homogenous styles. They like to customize clothes and reflect their own values) (WWD) (Customer Management IQ)

- Rather than just creating another celebrity fragrance (since there clearly aren’t enough of those already, Selena Gomez has a smart strategy: she’s letting fans pick her perfume. They’ll vote online for their favorite ingredients and the most popular ones will be mixed together. She’s also giving away free samples to the first 50,000 people who vote. Between the customization, online engagement, and rewards, this has all the makings of a successful marketing campaigning. We wonder if it will do better than Bieber’s perfume. In other beauty news, the Muppets franchise is expanding into nail polish and some of our favorite shades include “Gettin’ Miss Piggy With It” and “Fresh Frog of Bell Air”) (MTV) (Jezebel)

- In another attempt for Facebook to rule the web (the social network is creating a photo-filter service similar to Instagram on its mobile app. Considering Facebook’s app is so popular already, this can only help the social network, but what will it do the same for Instagram? Millennials will also appreciate a new application,  i2Symbol, that lets them put symbols in their Facebook posts. They’ve grown up using emoticons and other characters, so it seems like a necessary part of their digital language) (ReadWriteWeb) (AllFacebook)

- Skechers is the latest brand to get the happy meal treatment (thanks to a three-week partnership with McDonald’s where kids will get mini Skechers’ shoes. In a brilliant marketing move well aligned with back-to-school shopping, the Twinkle Toes sneakers — which look just like the life-size ones – come with a discount coupon to shop at Skechers) (MediaPost)

- Merriam-Webster Dictionary added over 150 words inspired by Gen Y and today’s changing culture (Among them are technology terms such as tweet, social media, crowdsourcing, and m-commerce. While we wonder about pop culture inspired words like bromance and cougar, it’s the terms helicopter parent and boomerang child being included that make us think better late than never) (CBS News)

- Lady Gaga has almost achieved world domination (considering she’s the 11th most powerful woman, the top female entertainer, and she’s even ahead of Oprah! Sure, she has her weird ways, but it’s obviously working) (Forbes)

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