Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For March 16, 2014

Percentage of American adults who chose Betty White as America's favorite and most trusted personality, and the one whose endorsement of a company would be most likely to drive business, according to an Ipsos poll: 86

Ranks of Denzel Washington, Sandra Bullock and Clint Eastwood (on the list of trusted personalities): 2, 3, 4

Ranks of Paris Hilton, Charlie Sheen, Britney Spears, Kanye West, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Tiger Woods on the list of the most unpopular personalities: 1, 2, 3(tie), 5, 6

Source: Ipsos Public Affairs.

Percentage of sales that still take place in retail stores, according to analytics firm ShopperTrak, according to a recent Oracle study: 90

Percentage of sales that take place online: 10

Percentage of executives who say that improving customer experience is one of their top three immediate priorities: 93

Source: Trevelino/Keller.

Percentage of Americans who believe that destination weddings are more fun, according to the results of a study conducted by Northstar on behalf of Expedia.com: 84

Percentage of Americans who believe that hotel costs should be covered by the wedding hosts: 47

Percentage who expressed the belief that flights should also be paid for: 31

Source: Expedia.

Percentage of Americans who say that parents spanking their children is sometimes appropriate, according to a Harris Poll: 81

Percentage who believe it is never appropriate: 19

Among those with a child in the household, percentage of respondents who believe that spanking is sometimes appropriate: 78

Source: Harris Interactive.

Percentage of travelers who said being green has at least some influence on their travel purchases, according to a joint survey conducted by The GO Group LLC and GO Airport Express: 66

Percentage of those who noted they always prefer green vendors: 9

Percentage who said they usually prefer green vendors if other factors, such as price and convenience, aren't compromised: 24

Source: GO Airport Express.

Number of people who attended Mardi Gras festivities in New Orleans in 2013, 3.4 times the population of the city, according to numbers compiled by Margaret Rhodes of Fast Co.: 1.2 million

Amount of money the city of New Orleans spends on Mardi Gras each year (and sees a return of $4.48 for every dollar spent): $3.33 million

In 154 years, number of times Mardi Gras has been canceled -- for a yellow fever epidemic and riots during Reconstruction, among other reasons, but not after Hurricane Katrina: 13

Source: Fast Co.

While youth understand that the Internet is dangerous, percentage who still engage in risky behavior, acknowledging that they would change their behavior if they knew their parents were paying attention, according to findings from McAfee's Digital Deception study: 46

Percentage of parents who do not think that their children can get into deep trouble online: 62

Percentage of parents who do not even know how to find out what their children are doing online: 80

Source: McAfee Inc.

Percentage of all online adults in the U.S. who watched video content in February using a subscription video account, according to Mintel Research: 46

Percentage of all 18- to 34-year-olds who watched video content February using a subscription video account: 71

Rough percentage growth in sales of video content in each year from 2011 to 2013, resulting in a total increase in sales of $1.2 billion in 2013: 25

Estimated total sales of video content by 2018 as consumers shift away from physical discs and continue to seek out unique content: $16.7 billion

Source: Mintel.

During the past 12 months, percentage of business travelers in the United States who encountered a mishap while traveling to their destinations, according to a survey by the Global Business Travel Association: 75

Ranks of travel delay due to weather (54 percent), delayed flight/train departure (48 percent), airplane incident (mechanical issue, late arrival, etc. -- 40 percent) and missed connecting flight (16 percent) on the list of most frequently reported issues during travel: 1, 2, 3, 4

Source: Global Business Travel Association.

Percentage of U.S. consumers who prefer personalized offers reflecting their shopping habits, according to a survey conducted by Synqera: 85

Percentage of Americans who coupon-browsed instead of window-browsed during the 2013 holiday seasons: 66

Source: Synqera.

Idle Thought

"The luck of having talent is not enough; one must also have a talent for luck." -- Hector Berlioz, composer

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre(at)bwr.eastlink.ca.)