February 21, 2024

Fast food companies pour billions of dollars into marketing every year, and a big portion of those costs come from expensive video shoots for commercials. This video takes a detailed look at the extraordinary skill that goes into seemingly simple fast food ads, from hand-painting burger patties to moving items precisely with the help of robot technology.

Questions:

1. Why do fast food companies spend so much money to make their menu items appear realistic on camera?
2. How does Continue reading

Continue reading...

February 2, 2024

Large hot air balloons can cost as much as $160,000, requiring huge amounts of high quality materials and lots of time. This video focuses on the Spanish company Ultramagic Balloons, which employs large sewing teams as well as engineers to produce flawless balloon-based aircraft. 

Questions:

  1. Why does Ultramagic Balloons prioritize quality control throughout its production process? 
  2. What are some factors that contribute to the high costs of hot air balloons?
Continue reading...

January 24, 2024

Two weeks ago, we looked at the terrifying incident that passengers experienced on an Alaska Airlines flight when a door suddenly blew open during takeoff. The incident placed Boeing under renewed scrutiny for its Max line of aircraft, which could have big repercussions for the company going forward. This video looks at the potential consequences Boeing could face, from losing airlines’ confidence to ceding market share to competitors like Airbus.

Questions:

  1. How could airlines’ loss of confidence in Boeing Continue reading
Continue reading...

January 19, 2024

The German company Aldi is the fastest growing grocery chain in the U.S., expanding at a rate of about 100 stores a year. The following video explains how Aldi keeps prices low by stocking a limited number of products and designing stores for maximum efficiency. 

Questions:

  1. How do Aldi’s store layouts help the company keep expenses low?
  2. Why does Aldi stock significantly fewer products than most supermarkets?
Continue reading...

January 3, 2024

According to the consultancy firm McKinsey, most mid-sized businesses have an average lifespan of about 18 years as companies change hands and markets evolve. That makes the achievement of the cymbal maker Zildjian all the more impressive: for more than four centuries, the company has served countless musicians across a wide variety of styles and eras. Along with providing a comprehensive overview of Zildjian’s storied history, the video below also examines the company’s fascinating production process and quality control procedures. Continue reading

Continue reading...

December 1, 2023

The Chinese e-commerce giant Shein (pronounced Shee-In) controls more than 40 percent of the U.S. fast fashion market, with more than $8 billion in sales last year. This video explores how the retailer consistently churns out cheap shirts and dresses, which includes accusations of labor exploitation that has tarnished Shein’s image with some shoppers.

Questions:

  1. How does Shein’s “small batch” production strategy differ from other clothing companies? 
  2. How has Shein tried to recover its reputation with U.S. consumers? Do Continue reading
Continue reading...

November 17, 2023

With nearly 2,000 stores across the U.S., more than 75 percent of Americans live within ten miles of a Target. These brick and mortar locations have become surprisingly valuable assets for the company’s e-commerce business, with more than 95 percent of online orders originating from Target stores. This video goes into detail about the retailer’s logistical operations, including the local sortation centers Target is investing in to keep up with increasing demand. 

Questions:

  1. How does Target utilize nearly 2,000 Continue reading
Continue reading...

November 8, 2023

If you’ve taken an over-the-counter (OTC) nasal decongestant recently, you may have been upset to discover that it did not do much to relieve your clogged sinuses. In fact, recent studies by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) show that most OTC decongestants work no better than a placebo. This video explains in detail how store shelves became filled with useless cold medicine, and ways that the FDA are working to make things right.

Questions:

  1. Why do most OTC decongestants Continue reading
Continue reading...

October 27, 2023

From counter service restaurants to furniture stores, Americans are prompted to leave a tip for nearly every purchase they make. Along with looking at the history of tipping in the U.S., this video explains “price partitioning” and how it influences the ways that consumers view prices, showing that tipping is likely here to stay despite being consistently unpopular. 

Questions:

  1. What is price partitioning, and how does it influence consumers’ views on prices? 
  2. Do you think businesses should phase Continue reading
Continue reading...

October 20, 2023

This video looks at the evolving operations of North America’s largest landfill operator, WM. Using capital provided by federal subsidies, the waste management company is investing in tech that could change the future of trash disposal, from sophisticated scanners that sort recycling to capturing methane gas to convert into fuel.

Questions:

  1. Why is WM upgrading its operations to include more automation as well as methane gas extraction? 
  2. Do you think WM’s operational upgrades will make the company more sustainable Continue reading
Continue reading...