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Winners & Losers in a Digital Age

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In our weekly "Winners and Losers in a Digital Age" series hosted by L2 Founder Scott Galloway and released each Thursday, we recap the week's news and our take on who is thriving and who is diving in a digital age. The series was selected as a 2016 Webby Honoree in the Online Film & Video - News & Information category.

In our weekly "Winners and Losers in a Digital Age" series hosted by L2 Founder Scott Galloway and released each Thursday, we recap the week's news and our take on who is thriving and who is diving in a digital age. The series was selected as a 2016 Webby Honoree in the Online Film & Video - News & Information category.
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In our weekly "Winners and Losers in a Digital Age" series hosted by L2 Founder Scott Galloway and released each Thursday, we recap the week's news and our take on who is thriving and who is diving in a digital age. The series was selected as a 2016 Webby Honoree in the Online Film & Video - News & Information category.




Scott Galloway: Trump Wins as Twitter Loses

Winner: Donald Trump, whose unapologetic bluntness is helping him not only on the campaign trail but also on Twitter. The candidate has garnered more than 6.5 million followers despite repeated gaffes. A related winner: Canada. Searches for “How to Move to Canada” surged as Super Tuesday results added momentum to Trump’s campaign. Loser: Twitter. In the decade the platform has been around, it has shed $2 billion. While the company wallpapers over these losses by publishing adjusted...


Scott Galloway: Amazon Flexes

Losers: FedEx and UPS. Their costs are increasing faster than the U.S. inflation rate, motivating Amazon to take shipping into its own hands with Flex, an Uber-style delivery service. Winner: watch brands featured in movies. Hamilton’s site traffic hit a two-year high when the brand’s BeLOWZERO watch was featured in The Martian. Similarly, Omega – James Bond’s official watch – got a huge Facebook boost from Spectre. Another winner: Venmo, which consumers can now use to make in-app...


Scott Galloway: Facebook for Emotion, Google for Intent

A winner: the Apple Watch. While the media has portrayed the product as a total failure, that “failure” is approximately a $6 billion business for Apple. The brand now owns two-thirds of the smartwatch market – making Samsung the loser in this scenario. More losers: TV and the Super Bowl. Rather than paying for costly TV spots amid declining viewership, brands should consider alternative advertising platforms including Snapchat, where Gatorade’s Super Bowl-inspired lens was a big...


Scott Galloway: What $5M Can Buy

A winner: Victoria’s Secret. The brand is doing a great job of leveraging content to drive consumer engagement across channels, resulting in a 61% share of the global lingerie store market. A loser: U.S. department stores. European retailers lead their American counterparts in offering click-and-collect, which boosts net sales by 12%. A loser: Whole Foods, which has not embraced digital. The retailer invests little in digital content, including a loyalty program, and sticks to...


Scott Galloway: The Internet is Netflix (Plus Some Other Stuff)

A continued winner: Netflix. After gaining six million new members in Q4, the site has more streaming members than the population of the U.K. Another winner: NYX. The savvy Beauty brand not only integrates user-generated content onto its site, but is bringing it into stores, letting customers scan items to reveal associated UGC. A winner: U.S. universities – but only a select few. While educational institutions are raking in more donations than ever before, just 20 schools brought in the...


Scott Galloway: Technology Head Fakes

A loser: everyone who bet on technologies that never got out of a niche market. That means mass customization, Internet of Things, beacons, 3D printing, and the next big head fake – virtual reality. A big winner: podcasts. The medium is rapidly growing, with 21 million hours of podcasts consumed each day – offering big opportunities for the media companies and advertisers who get in early. A loser: Fitbit. Shares fell by 18% on the day when Fitbit released an Apple me-too product, the...


Scott Galloway: The Fastest Growing Platform You Probably Don’t Know About

A winner: Flipagram, a popular app that lets users string together photos and videos to make a mini movie. Brands like Lionsgate, Jack Daniels, and Uber have embraced the app’s advertising potential, but individual “flipastars” get more views - just as vloggers dominate brands on YouTube. A continued winner: WeChat, which is taking over engagement from microblogging platform Sina Weibo. Of the 100 Beauty brands in L2’s upcoming Digital IQ Index®: China Beauty, 96 have WeChat accounts. One...


Scott Galloway: What Do Uber, Visa and Four Seasons Have in Common?

A loser: companies that actually own stuff. Top brands like Alibaba, Uber, Visa, and Four Seasons are not saddled with inventory or real estate - proving that the greatest asset in a digital age is human capital. A winner: Valentino, one of the fastest-growing luxury brands in the world thanks to its social strategy. The brand garners more interactions than Instagram leader Michael Kors, even though Michael Kors generates twice as much engagement per post. The lesson here for brands? Post...


Scott Galloway: We Got It Wrong

A winner: Amazon Web Services. With steadily increasing revenue, the cloud could soon surpass Amazon’s retail business. We predicted earlier this year that Amazon would decline in value – and we were wrong. A loser: CNBC, or more broadly, any ad-supported media that’s not Facebook or Google. The cable channel is seeing plunging ratings; our Winners & Losers videos are on the way to getting more views than CNBC, proving that no one wants content interrupted by ads. That truth is also part...


Scott Galloway: Stores Are the New Black

As the phone becomes the remote control for your house, the big winner in the $7 trillion Internet of Things market is likely to be Apple or Samsung. The two behemoths make more than 35% of devices shipped annually, according to L2’s inaugural Consumer Electronics Digital IQ Index. Apple might have an edge with controlled distribution and its unparalleled user interface, but Google, Amazon, and even appliance companies might also get in the game. Another winner: Anastasia, an LA-based...


Scott Galloway: The Halo Effect

It looks like search may have hit its prime. This year, 6% fewer people say they used search engines to discover brands, products, and services. This affects Google, which earns 90% of its revenue through search, and raises the question: what happens to one of the most meaningful companies in history as its core business goes into structural decline? It’s a question Chanel does not need to answer. The iconic luxury firm added $3 billion to its owners’ pockets last year by following an...


Scott Galloway: The Email Executioner

Burberry, who is struggling to get rid of price differences between regions, is this week’s loser. What used to be good brand management – taking advantage of markets where you can charge $150 for an item that costs only $30 in the US – has become more difficult in an increasingly transparent digital world. Burberry’s products are significantly more expensive in Asia than the U.S. or Europe. For example, the brand’s iconic trench coat trades for about $2,700 in China and only $1,900 in the...


Scott Galloway: The Best Luxury Brand in the World

Apple has taken a beating in the last few weeks, shedding about two billion dollars in market capitalization. However, the company is still a winner because of the Apple Watch. Anybody that matters in fashion is wearing it, marking Apple as one of the world’s top luxury brands. A big winner you might not have heard of: Palantir. The company builds software that ties databases together, making it easier to search and analyze information. It recently ranked fourth on a list of the most...


Scott Galloway: Google’s Umbrella

This week’s first winner is the U.S. Postal Service, which delivers an estimated 40% of Amazon packages annually. While Amazon pays the USPS only half of what it pays UPS and FedEx, all packages are delivered pre-sorted and tailored for delivery routes. Plus, USPS needs all the help it can get, having lost $46 billion since 2007. Is Conde Nast a winner or loser for its $20 million investment in Reddit? We’d argue they’re a winner: Reddit has achieved scale that escaped most of its peers....


Scott Galloway: Is It Better to Be Lucky or Good?

Under Armour had incredible luck with the athletes they chose to sponsor this year. The Golden State Warriors’ rise from obscurity to become the best team in basketball highlighted Stephen Curry’s Under Armour footwear, Jordan Speith’s Masters victory made the brand synonymous with golf overnight, and Misty Copeland became the first African-American to be named a principal in the 75-year history of the American Ballet Theater, helping her Under Armour YouTube video garner over nine million...


Scott Galloway: Vloggers Outshine Celebrities

A clear winner in a digital age: Smashbox. Ending print advertising hasn’t held back the Estée Lauder-owned beauty firm. To the contrary, Smashbox grew double digits this year, making it the second fastest-growing brand in Estée Lauder’s portfolio after Tom Ford. The brand’s innovative digital effort includes projecting images submitted by social media users on billboards during Oscar Week, in addition to opening up their studios to vloggers. The resulting #MadeAtSmashbox playlist has over...


Scott Galloway: What’s Boring is Sexy

This week’s first winner is Netflix, which had 61 million active subscribers in Q1 and recently saw its market capitalization surpass that of CBS and Yahoo. CEO Reed Hastings once said Netflix’s goal was to “become HBO faster than HBO can become us.” Today, it seems like they’re beating HBO at its own game. As movies won, commercial photos lost. Consumers trust content created by users more than content created by professionals, according to L2’s recent study on user-generated content...