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Explore consumer insights update, issue 2, 2018

Posted By PML Group, Wednesday 11 July 2018
Updated: Monday 9 July 2018

PML Explore report

The latest issue of PML group's consumer insights update featuring extracts from PML Group’s research resources plus items of interest from home and abroad.

In this edition:
OOH – Key Online/Offline Driver
Trust in Out of Home
Time for a Dynamic Approach
Noticeability of Advertising
Summer in Dublin
Poster Impact
Top recalled campaigns Q1
Social Media Influencers
Dublin’s Footfall Analysis – Grafton & Henry Streets (BNP Paribas)
Canal Cordon Report (NTA)
National Roads Network Indicators (TII)
Supermarket Shopping (V360)
OOH & Mobile Made for each other (JCDecaux)


read report


About PML Group

PML Group is the Ireland’s leading Out of Home advertising and location based marketing specialist. They have a deep understanding of what people think, feel and do out of the home, making them experts in reaching and influencing audiences in the physical world. They combine insight, data, technology and smart people to create compelling, creative and quantifiable solutions which make a meaningful difference to businesses and brands.  They enable brands to navigate the complex, location-based marketing landscape with ease, to develop dynamic and integrated communications and to build rewarding customer relationships.

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The B2B Content Creation Masterclass

Posted By Squaredot, Tuesday 3 July 2018

squaredot b2b content creation masterclass

As a B2B marketer, you know you need to promote your brand in the best light, in front of the right people, at the right time, with the right message to ensure a steady stream of ongoing quality leads and loyal customer retention. To achieve this you need to get serious about your content marketing.

Squaredot have created this B2B Content Creation Masterclass ebook to guide you through the steps you need to take to create content that delivers qualified leads.


Read ebook


About Squaredot

Squaredot are an Irish B2B digital agency. We generate demand by connecting brands with the modern B2B buyer. Squaredot use research and data to create targeted marketing collateral, combined with award winning design and copywriting to craft engaging content that converts attention into leads. Squaredot’s services include research, strategy, persona development, content production design and promotion.


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Snack bars innovation: what’s now and what’s next

Posted By Mintel, Wednesday 13 June 2018
Updated: Tuesday 12 June 2018

The snack bar category in recent years has catered for many different eating occasions. These range from indulgent and comforting snacks to functional, portable and healthy nutrition products, with many blurred variants in between. And as consumers develop a more holistic approach to health, natural, vegan and free-from formulations have continued to grow in popularity.

Vegan pea protein in the spotlight

As the buzz around plant-based diets grows, protein bar brands need to cater to a wider range of dietary preferences. Consumers are increasingly aware of the environmental and health imperatives that support diets high in plant-based foods. This has particularly impacted the snack bar category, with global launches of vegan snack bars doubling over the past five years, from 11% of all snack bar launches in 2013 to 20% in 2017, according to Mintel’s Global New Products Database. Leading markets for launches of vegan snack bars are predominantly in Europe, notably Germany, where a staggering 43% of snack bars launched in 2017 were vegan. However, soy protein (the leading source of plant protein) is considered a divisive ingredient. Often genetically modified, it’s avoided by as many as 17% of UK consumers. As a result, snack bar brands will increasingly need to review how to formulate products that are both vegan-friendly and clean label. Pea protein is emerging as a hero alternative to soy, with brands now visibly calling out the use of pea protein on packaging.


PaPicante Mediterranean Pea Protein Bar with Tomato, Basil and Pine Nuts, Germany

Presence of 'pea protein crisps' given prominence on front of pack in this savoury snack bar from Germany.



inSpiral Visionary Products Organic Banana Go-Go Protein Clusters with Live Cultures, UK

The plant-based, gluten-free raw product is said to provide one portion of five recommended fruits and vegetables a day. It contains banana rolled in cashew nuts, crunchy buckwheat, pumpkin seeds, almonds, figs, pea and rice protein, and one billion of bacteria each pack.



Anything goes: New launches continue to redefine the snack bar

Snack bar formats have evolved and brands are looking beyond bars to provide consumers with portion control, shareability and fun. Demonstrating what an established option this format has become, balls and bites accounted for 7% of all global snack bar launches over 2017, more than doubling over the past three years. 

Savoury flavours have emerged in traditionally sweet categories over the past few years. Salty versions of sweet flavours, such as salted caramel or 'sweet and salty' popcorn, have become mainstream, overshadowing overly sweet flavours and possibly enabling greater consumption. Launches of 'sweet and salty' snack bars tripled over the three years to 2017. Moving further along the sweet-savoury continuum, the snack bar category has also seen launches of fruit and vegetable combinations.


Lubs Pepper & Spinach with Chilli Veggie Bar, Germany

An organic vegetable bar with red pepper, spinach and cayenne pepper. This vegan product is free from gluten and added sugar.

 MaXsport Raw Juicer Beetroot and Currant Bar, Germany

Mixing vegetables and fruit, this vegan snack is high in fibre and contains no added sugar.



Meal replacement snack bars aren’t just for dieters

Time is a precious commodity and consumers are hungry for products that help them streamline every moment of their lives. Meal replacement products allow to deal with the time-consuming tasks of meal-planning, food shopping and eating more efficiently. While some consumers receive enormous pleasure from their eating experiences, not everyone is a foodie, and some are too busy to be foodies all the time.

Snack bars are experimenting with non-traditional ingredients including cheese, meat, eggs and even insects, and this trend shows no sign of abating. Dairy ingredients and yogurt brands have been appearing in the snack bar category as brands look to offer consumers a more convenient way to snack on dairy products. 


Clio Strawberry Greek Yogurt Bar Enrobed in Chocolate, USA

A unique new snack bar that offers yogurt consumers true on-the-go snacking convenience. Made from pressed Greek yogurt and enrobed in chocolate, these bars need to be refrigerated, but can be consumed with just one hand and no spoon.



Salad Shots Bar Choco Balsamic Snack Bar, USA

This natural product is said to combine the goodness of a salad with the convenience of a bar, and is infused with superfoods and antioxidants. It’s made with dark chocolate, cranberries, goji berries, chia seeds, kale, spinach, brown rice, quinoa, almonds, walnuts and pecans.


 You Beef Bar with Apple and Banana, Switzerland

This low fat, high in protein bar is described as a dried beef preparation made from meat pieces with apples, bananas and honey.


Cathedral City Lighter Mature Cheese Snack Bar, UK

This 30g bar targets consumers who enjoy snacking on cheese, but are looking for a convenient format for on-the-go snacking.



Smooth-textured layers add healthy indulgence to snack bars

Snack bar brands are embracing nut butters, the spread-turned-snack food that has experienced growth in popularity over the past year. However, textural variety is not something that has been well explored yet, with only a few brands keeping the nut butter as a separate textural element, rather than mixing it into the bar itself. By doing so, for instance through sandwiched layers or fillings, they go beyond flavour and use soft, creamy textures to add appetite appeal.


Kashi GoLean Plant Power Honey Pecan Baklava Plant Powered Bars, USA

Playing with textures, this bar has a smooth honey, cashew and sunflower seed butter layer on top of crunchy nuts, seeds and chewy wholegrains.




Broderick's Crunchy Slam Dunk Peanut Chunk Bar, Ireland

This Belgian chocolate and rice crispies bar is covered with a layer of smooth peanut butter bar and chocolate.



About Mintel

Mintel is the world's leading market intelligence agency. For over 40 years, Mintel's expert analysis of the highest quality data and market research has directly impacted on client success. With offices in London, Chicago, Belfast, Düsseldorf, Kuala Lumpur, Mumbai, Munich, New York, São Paulo, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo, and Toronto, Mintel has forged a unique reputation as a world-renowned business brand.

For more information on Mintel, please visit Follow Mintel on Twitter: or join the Mintel LinkedIn community:

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Irish B2B Digital Marketing Survey 2018

Posted By The Marketing Institute and Squaredot, Wednesday 6 June 2018

B2B Digital Marketing Survey

The Marketing Institute and Irish B2B digital agency Squaredot have partnered to bring you the B2B Digital Marketing Survey, which sheds light on the state of B2B Digital Marketing in Ireland.

We thank everyone who took part and we are delighted to share the key findings of the survey.


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Looking to develop your skillset? Try talent stacking

Posted By Steven Roberts, Head of Marketing at Griffith College , Wednesday 6 June 2018
Updated: Tuesday 5 June 2018

talent stacking

We’re often told there is one way of excelling in our careers – a focused approach on developing expertise in a particular subject area. Over time, this benefits from the compound effect. Step by step we gradually improve, to the point where a form of mastery is achieved in our chosen subject.

This makes sense. We all know of the surgeon, the legal expert, the sportsperson or musician who has achieved an eminent career by taking such an approach. 
However, there is another route marketers can take, which can be equally productive – combining or ‘stacking’ a range of talents in a unique way.

Author, cartoonist and entrepreneur Scott Adams talks about the benefits of talent stacking in his book How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big.

He argues persuasively that by combining a range of complementary skills together, you can develop a unique professional skillset. In his case, business nous via an MBA, good drawing and communication skills, amongst others. He readily admits that he is standout at none of these, but within the top 20% for each.

The idea of a talent stack is that you can combine ordinary skills until you have enough of the right kind to be extraordinary. Scott Adams

The key here is complementarity – for example, for marketers it could be matching strategic skills with a deep understanding of branding. Combining consumer behaviour and psychology with advertising, or melding aspects of data, technology and digital marketing.

The World Economic Forum states that the ‘ability to anticipate and prepare for future skills requirements, job content and the aggregate effect on employment is increasingly critical for businesses, governments and individuals’.

In an economy where jobs are emerging and becoming obsolete with increasing rapidity, having a range of skills and talents provides flexibility. The opportunity to move from one complementary area to another. To switch between sectors.

Knowledge workers… will have to learn to stay young and mentally alive during a fifty-year working life. Peter Drucker.

This approach has links with the synthesizing mind, popularised by Howard Gardner and others. Here you take skillsets in diverse areas and provide value through the novel and unique insights this offers. 

Robert Greene, in his book Mastery, argues that the key to success is to build knowledge and skills and combine them in an interesting way. To be an expert generalist allows you to make connections that your peers will miss due to a siloed view of the world.

Beatles guitarist George Harrison was a master at combining aspects of the guitar in a unique way. Having first built a comprehensive knowledge of current guitar styles through The Beatles’ early years as a cover band, his explorations lead him to the sitar. The instrument, then relatively unknown in western music, provided standout elements in tracks such as Norwegian Wood. Not content to stop there, Harrison learned to master slide guitar, a sound that would eventually become his signature on classics such as Something and My Sweet Lord.

Stepping back from these dizzying heights, how can we build a similar approach into our own careers? 

There are a few key steps to take. Firstly, look at your core competencies. Are there complementary areas you could develop knowledge in? Are there aspects where you have moderate knowledge, but with an investment of time could develop and broaden these skills to provide added value?

Next, set a list of goals and identify the top three priorities within these. Then clearly map out a plan and process that will allow you to chip away at them on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Personal development coaches such as Brian Tracy, Pat Divilly and others suggest identifying a portion of each day which you set aside just for this purpose, be it the 2% rule or the golden hour. The core purpose is to give you time for the deep work and focus required to build your skillset effectively.

If you haven’t already started, the next best time to begin is right now. Use the compound effect, take daily steps towards your goals. You’ll be surprised at just how effective this approach can be.

About the author

Steven Roberts is head of marketing for Griffith College and a certified data protection officer. Steven has over 15 years’ experience working in management, senior marketing and strategy roles in the education, heritage and tourism sectors.


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