In this file:


·         Perishable food play from Amazon

·         Amazon will soon offer to deliver packages to your garage so they don't get stolen

·         Amazon's new ad strategy: Free samples based on what it knows about you



Perishable food play from Amazon


By: Clark Schultz, SeekingAlpha

Jan. 7, 2019


·         Amazon appears to be prepping to make a deeper push into ready-made meals, according to some digging by TJI Research.


·         TJI found a job posting from Amazon in which it says it's looking for the right hires to help it commercialize a portfolio of perishable packaged foods.


·         "Ready-made meals is an interesting strategy because it leverages two major competitive advantages Amazon has been investing in heavily: 1) its Prime Now network of last mile delivery solutions, and 2) its growing network of Amazon Go and Whole Foods food distribution centers, er, grocery stores. Ready meals are a logical application to run on top of this infrastructure," notes Justin Smith.


·         The development could be of interest to Blue Apron...





Amazon will soon offer to deliver packages to your garage so they don't get stolen


    Amazon announced Key for Garage and Key for Business on Monday.

    Key for Garage will let customers have packages delivered right into their garage.

    Key for Business gives delivery drivers a special key fob for commercial and residential deliveries.


Todd Haselton, CNBC

Jan 7, 2019


Amazon has a new way to prevent thieves from stealing packages.


In early 2019, Amazon will offer to deliver packages right into your garage, the company announced Monday at CES. The service is called Key for Garage, and joins Amazon's Key for Home and Key for Car services.


Key for Garage, like Key for Home, requires some additional hardware. You'll need a $80 Chamberlain myQ Smart Garage Hub, which will let Amazon talk to your garage door opener so that it can be opened by a delivery person. Folks who already own that hub will be able to use it. You'll also need an Amazon Prime subscription if you want packages delivered inside your garage, but you can still open the garage remotely from the Amazon Key app even if you're not a Prime member.


Unlike Key for Home, you don't need a camera to record the delivery.


This method of delivery might be welcomed by people who didn't like Key for Home...


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Amazon's new ad strategy: Free samples based on what it knows about you


David McCabe & Sara Fischer, AXIOS

Jan 8, 2019


Amazon is quietly piloting a program to let brands like Maybelline and Folgers pay to send free samples to consumers — all based on what the retail giant already knows they're likely to buy.


Why it matters: Turning free samples into new targeted ads plays to Amazon's strength as a trusted delivery service of everyday goods, something Americans already expect from the company. Amazon is betting the sample strategy is something its biggest competitors — Google and Facebook — can't match.


The big picture: Analysts see this as a big advantage for Amazon in its efforts to take on Google and Facebook's ad dominance. The tech giant has the purchasing data and logistics infrastructure to offer samples of actual products, which could be more effective than display ads on Facebook or search ads on Google for certain kinds of consumer packaged goods brands.


Display ads are currently how Amazon makes the majority of its roughly $5 billion in ad revenue. But Amazon says that marrying old-school samples with its customer data will provide brands "a higher likelihood of conversion than display ads,” according to a summer job posting.


·         Amazon has more than 100 million subscribers to its Prime services alone, meaning it has established long-term relationships with users. Millions more purchase goods regularly from the company, even without a Prime subscription.

·         "Having this huge installed base of users, or really Prime subscribers, and putting something in the box that people will have a high proclivity for liking — that seems like a brilliant Amazon strategy," said Rich Greenfield, a managing director and media analyst at BTIG.


How it works: Samples of new products are sent to customers selected using machine learning based on Amazon's data about consumer habits, according to recent job postings and details listed on its site.


·         In a November listing for a “BizTech Leader” position, the company says that it is an “advertising product that leverages Amazon’s customer data to allow brands to put their products in the hands of the right customers to drive product awareness and conversion.” ("Conversion" is an industry term for when a person goes from seeing an ad to buying the product in the ad.)

·         Amazon doesn’t publicize the offering among its other ad products, but its legal terms for advertisers include details about how its sample program functions.

·         “No later than the date specified by Amazon, Advertiser will deliver to Amazon at the location(s) designated by Amazon and at Advertiser’s expense, all Samples to be delivered or distributed by Amazon,” the terms say.


Amazon declined to comment. The company has experimented with different approaches to samples, including one where Prime members can buy samples and get a credit for a later purchase.


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