Yakov Bart, assistant professor of marketing at the D'Amore-McKim School of Business recently commented on the latest “Unicorn Frappuccino” craze and examines where social media can take food trends in the future.

Social media users directly contributed to the success of the Starbucks's Unicorn Frappuccino, popping up on countless Instagram and Snapchat accounts during the five days it was available for purchase.

“Lots of brands have made substantial investments in social media listening, and many have moved into translating collected insights into various strategic marketing decisions, including the new product development processes,” said Bart.

Bart explains that companies must weigh the options they face when considering a current trend – decide to be the first one in an emerging sector or wait and determine whether it will be a short-term or long-term fad.

“Finding a delicate balance between these two is an important and difficult challenge, which big brands typically attempt to address by collecting insights from more social media sources and improving their analytics toolkits,” said Bart.

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