Welcome to First Things First, Adweek’s daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on Adweek.com each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.
Controversial Product Listings Continue to Plague Amazon
Amazon has a serious problem with product listings that include symbols of hate groups, including swastikas, nooses and the Nazi eagle. With 500 million listings and 2.2 million independent sellers on Amazon, it’s a massive undertaking to monitor all of them, and as soon as one is removed, another takes its place. Adweek found 200 listings that included hate symbols and 2,000 that are ambiguous or borderline, but of course that’s a tiny fraction—roughly 0.00044%—of Amazon’s overall marketplace.
Addressing the problem: Amazon’s Rekognition tech helps other companies scan for offensive listings, and theoretically the company could use this tech to scan products before they’re on sale, but whether this is happening is unclear.
Also in Amazon news: The FAA has approved Amazon’s use of drone delivery for commercial packages, which removes a regulatory hurdle that had been standing in the way.
Nike’s Spot Honors Venus and Serena Williams’ Combined Records—Instead of Comparing Them
In a new ad by Wieden+Kennedy Portland, Nike highlights the fact that Venus and Serena Williams are constantly compared to each other and positioned as rivals, but instead of continuing that trend, it unites the two iconic players’ collective stats. “We are where we are today because we did this together,” Serena said in a statement. The ad is the latest in the “You Can’t Stop Us” series, which also included its remarkable split-screen video that cleverly united athletes’ movements.
WPP CEO Mark Read Tries to Apologize for Ageist Comments
Mark Read, CEO of holding company WPP, is trying to make amends after boasting that the “average age of someone who works at WPP is less than 30″ during the company’s earnings call on August 27. The comment received backlash on Twitter and LinkedIn from industry leaders like Cindy Gallop, former Ogilvy executive creative director and copy chief George Tannenbaum, Fearless founder Ian David and Dear Future CEO Matt Kandela, who said the comment was ageist.
Backpedaling: Read went into damage control mode over the weekend.
8 Must-Have Marketing Skills for a Modern Day Resume
We rounded up answers from our Innovators community on the most valuable skills for marketers today. The answers varied, but notably, recurring themes included empathy, resiliency and curiosity. “Marketers learn as much from failure as they do from success, and being agile and learning when to pivot has become necessary for any industry,” said Avish Sood of The Clorox Company.
Discover more of what you need to know to get a leg up in the industry at Brandweek 2020, a fully reimagined virtual experience. Register today with code BW2MVT to take 20% off!
More of Today’s Top News & Highlights