tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/strategy-operations Latest Strategy & Operations content from Econsultancy 2016-09-26T14:33:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68323 2016-09-26T14:33:00+01:00 2016-09-26T14:33:00+01:00 Getting started with programmatic? Here are some tips from the experts Seán Donnelly <p>If you are a Marketing Director and you’ve heard how your competitors are benefitting from programmatic and aren’t sure where to get started, you might find these suggestions from the GWTP panellists helpful.</p> <p>The key insight here is that all speakers emphasised the importance of people, skills and procedures above technology.</p> <h3>1. Knowledge</h3> <p>Marketers need to understand the programmatic ecosystem and the different use cases involved.</p> <p>Shamless plug: <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-cmo-s-guide-to-programmatic/search/?only=BlogPost&amp;q=programmatic">Econsultancy’s CMO’s Guide to Programmatic</a> has a whole chapter on understanding the programmatic ecosystem.</p> <p>Also, at the most basic level, marketers need to understand their customer.</p> <p>Panellists were at pains to point out that even if marketers spend lots of money on the tools required to deliver programmatic campaigns, if they don’t make the most of these tools to capture insights and optimise campaigns, then they may in fact end up delivering hyper targeted but irrelevant or annoying advertisements.</p> <p>For example, one speaker spoke of being retargeted with an ad to purchase a bicycle for three weeks after completing his purchase.</p> <h3>2. Procedures</h3> <p>While the tech may be ready, the last example demonstrates that skills and procedures may not be.</p> <p>Any company that makes use of programmatic technologies will need to examine current procedures and map out how these should change in order to integrate programmatic into other activities.</p> <p>This includes understanding what data you have and the role that your marketing agencies play in terms of bringing it all together. It's not just one person that can do all of this.</p> <h3>3. Skills</h3> <p>Companies require a team of people, right through from legal through to brand and digital expertise and data management. </p> <p>In addition, some of the key skills mentioned were of course data science and analytical thinking coupled with strong commercial awareness and an understanding of the fundamentals of marketing.</p> <p>There is huge demand for data science and analytical skills from all sectors.</p> <p>Research from <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/quarterly-digital-intelligence-briefing-2016-digital-trends/">Econsultancy’s 2016 Digital Trends</a> report suggests that only 37% of companies have the analysts that they need to make sense of their data.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9558/37__of_companies_have_the_analysts_that_they_need_to_make_sense_of_their_data.JPG" alt="" width="595" height="493"></p> <h3>4. Technology and data</h3> <p>Technology and data are key to running programmatic effectively.</p> <p>If you are having trouble getting your head around the tools involved and the plethora of TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms!), check out Econsultancy’s report: <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/programmatic-marketing-beyond-rtb/">Programmatic Marketing: Beyond RTB</a>.</p> <p>One speaker highlighted the importance of making sure that whatever technology is used, it must be integrated into other procedures and tools and not simply act as a third-party bolt on.</p> <p>Only when this happens will there be an opportunity to be able to surface customisable and actionable data.</p> <p>Finally, without actionable data, marketers run the risk of over or under targeting consumers.</p> <p>Without data, marketers will not be able to develop <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65425-what-is-the-single-customer-view-and-why-do-you-need-it/">a single customer view</a> and so while they may apply frequency capping to different channels, there is still a chance of over targeting.</p> <p>A single customer view will allow marketers to frequency cap users rather than devices and, in addition, sequentially message users depending on where they are in their customer journey. <br> </p> <h3>5. Budget and strategy</h3> <p>Making effective use of programmatic requires a <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/big-data-driven-marketing-how-to-get-it-right/">data-driven marketing strategy</a> at the highest level.</p> <p>This means aligning programmatic with other media and integrating the approach into other marketing activities.</p> <p>Companies should also assign a portion of the budget to test and learn.</p> <p>This is important because how can marketers expect to make any progress if they don't test new ideas? This of course goes beyond programmatic and includes other tactics.</p> <p>Achieving a data-driven strategy might also require an internal sponsor or delegating to somebody who can focus on delivery and setting up the correct internal structure and procedures.</p> <p>The programmatic sponsor can translate programmatic to a level that people understand - these might be senior people who are responsible for assigning budgets, executive leadership and the wider marketing team.</p> <p>This doesn’t mean not making use of agency partnerships. Agencies can still offer guidance around different media approaches and layering different datasets on top of each other. <br> </p> <h3>Getting on top of programmatic</h3> <p>Econsultancy runs regular <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/programmatic/">programmatic workshops</a> to help marketers cement their understanding of the programmatic landscape.</p> <p>If you already have an understanding of programmatic and want to look at some of the wider strategic use cases and challenges to be aware of, Econsultancy has published a number of reports on the subject:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-cmo-s-guide-to-programmatic/">CMO’s Guide to Programmatic</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/programmatic-branding/">Programmatic Branding, Driving Upper Funnel Engagement</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/programmatic-marketing-beyond-rtb/">Programmatic Marketing: Beyond RTB</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-role-of-dmps-in-the-era-of-data-driven-advertising/">The Role of DMPs in the Era of Data-Driven Advertising</a></li> </ul> <p>Econsultancy also regularly <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-cmo-s-guide-to-programmatic/search/?only=BlogPost&amp;q=programmatic">publishes blogs on the subject of programmatic</a>.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68316 2016-09-22T15:26:28+01:00 2016-09-22T15:26:28+01:00 Brew + Press: Why Molson Coors is merging its sales and marketing teams Nikki Gilliland <p>As highlighted by our <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-convergence-of-marketing-and-sales" target="_self">Convergence of Marketing and Sales report</a>, this approach is becoming increasingly desirable as a way of streamlining the customer journey.</p> <p>Here’s why the decision could prove effective for Molson Coors and many other brands like it.</p> <h3>Changing customer behaviour</h3> <p>With <a href="https://www.siriusdecisions.com/Blog/2013/Jul/Three-Myths-of-the-67-Percent-Statistic.aspx" target="_blank">67% of the customer’s path to purchase</a> now being conducted online, it has meant that the influence of both marketing and sales has been overtaken by self-directed online research.</p> <p>As a result, there is no longer a clear distinction between the roles of marketing and sales.</p> <p>See the below graph, which highlights how consumer research dominates the active consideration stage. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9440/touchpoints_path_to_purchase.JPG" alt="" width="612" height="482"></p> <p>For a company like Molson Coors, the decision to merge the teams means it is able to put on a united front, resulting in a single conversation with the customer rather than a disjointed one.</p> <h3>Focus on personalisation</h3> <p>As well as the changing path to purchase, another motivation behind Brew + Press looks to be the evolving needs of the customer – especially their desire to be educated as well as to enjoy immersive experiences.</p> <p>Speaking about the new division, Martin Coyle, Marketing Director for the UK and Ireland, commented:</p> <blockquote> <p>There is a growing appetite among consumers to learn more about beer, cider and spirits, as well as for experiences and learning about the brands themselves.</p> <p>Brew + Press intends to go after that market opportunity and talk to the consumer in the way they want to be spoken to.</p> </blockquote> <p>While sales teams were once the only way to deliver a personalised experience (through one-to-one interaction), marketing automation now means that companies can communicate highly relevant and personalised messages to consumers at all stages.</p> <p>Brew + Press looks set to target experience-hungry consumers by hosting events like beer and cider tasting, cocktail masterclasses, and food and drink pairings. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9441/Brew___Press.JPG" alt="" width="740" height="493"></p> <h3>Shift towards an omnichannel experience</h3> <p>Today, the customer journey is far more difficult to track than it used to be.</p> <p>Instead of the traditional funnel (seen below) and a single channel, consumers move from one device to another, from offline to online and back again.</p> <p>This means that opportunities for sales and marketing have also changed.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9443/Path_to_purchase.JPG" alt="" width="600" height="552"></p> <p>Sales teams are attempting to extend their reach into earlier stages of the customer’s journey, while marketers are encroaching closer to the purchase decision. </p> <p>As a result, taking into consideration the drive towards technology integration, it makes far more sense to join forces.</p> <p>In doing so, a seamless experience for the customer across all channels can be achieved. </p> <p>While Molson Coors is only merging its sales and marketing in London for now, it is hoping that the decision will set a precedent for other markets. </p> <p><strong>Subscribers can download the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-convergence-of-marketing-and-sales" target="_blank">Convergence of Sales and Marketing</a> report here.</strong></p> <p><em>Further reading on the blog:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68047-the-sales-marketing-departments-why-how-they-should-merge/" target="_blank">The Sales &amp; Marketing departments: Why &amp; how they should merge</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66736-marketing-and-sales-how-will-they-work-together-in-the-future/" target="_blank">Marketing and sales: how will they work together in the future?</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/3008 2016-09-22T14:30:00+01:00 2016-09-22T14:30:00+01:00 Internet Statistics Compendium Econsultancy <p>Econsultancy’s <strong>Internet Statistics Compendium</strong> is a collection of the most recent statistics and market data publicly available on online marketing, ecommerce, the internet and related digital media. </p> <p><strong>The compendium is available as 11 main reports (in addition to a B2B report) across the following topics:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/advertising-media-statistics">Advertising</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/content-statistics">Content</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/customer-experience-statistics">Customer Experience</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/web-analytics-statistics">Data and Analytics</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/demographics-technology-adoption">Demographics and Technology Adoption</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/uk/reports/ecommerce-statistics">Ecommerce</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/email-ecrm-statistics">Email and eCRM</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/mobile-statistics">Mobile</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/search-marketing-statistics">Search</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-statistics">Social</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/strategy-and-operations-statistics">Strategy and Operations</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a title="B2B Internet Statistics Compendium" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-internet-statistics-compendium">B2B</a></strong></li> </ul> <p>Updated monthly, each document is a comprehensive compilation of internet, statistics and online market research with data, facts, charts and figures.The reports have been collated from information available to the public, which we have aggregated together in one place to help you quickly find the internet statistics you need, to help make your pitch or internal report up to date.</p> <p>There are all sorts of internet statistics which you can slot into your next presentation, report or client pitch.</p> <p><strong>Those looking for B2B-specific data should consult our <a title="B2B Internet Statistics Compendium" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-internet-statistics-compendium">B2B Internet Statistics Compendium</a>.</strong></p> <p> <strong>Regions covered in each document (where available) are:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Global</strong></li> <li><strong>UK</strong></li> <li><strong>North America</strong></li> <li><strong>Asia</strong></li> <li><strong>Australia and New Zealand</strong></li> <li><strong>Europe</strong></li> <li><strong>Latin America</strong></li> <li><strong>MENA</strong></li> </ul> <p>A sample of the Internet Statistics Compendium is available for free, with various statistics included and a full table of contents, to show you what you're missing.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68288 2016-09-15T10:00:00+01:00 2016-09-15T10:00:00+01:00 How to overcome UX challenges with product design sprints Chris Benstead <p>However, what if there was a way of determining its success before it reaches the end-customer while minimising risk factors?</p> <p>One way that companies can develop their products and ensure they meet their business objective is by taking part in a product design sprint. It’s a tried and tested process, initially <a href="http://www.gv.com/sprint/">created by Google Ventures</a>.</p> <p>It’s a highly effective way of shaping new products and redesigning existing features to overcome any UX challenges. </p> <p><em>The original Google Ventures design sprint.</em></p> <p><em><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9169/Screen_Shot_2016-09-14_at_14.45.02.png" alt="google design sprint" width="475"></em></p> <p>A product design sprint is an intensive five-day process during which UX experts, such as digital strategists, designers and developers work alongside stakeholders to help gain an understanding of what the product is (or should be), to brainstorm ideas and features, to decide on which of those to explore, and then finally, to create a prototype and test these concepts with real users.</p> <p>Here’s a breakdown of a typical product design sprint process:</p> <h3>Day one: Understand</h3> <p>The UX team and stakeholders work to gain a shared knowledge of the problem and business goals, review existing analytics and competitors, as well as mapping out the primary user journey to be focused on.</p> <p>This gives a chance to find out what isn’t working and why, what areas need to be focused on and in what direction <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66381-how-jetstar-moved-to-agile-product-development-apac-insights/">product development</a> should be moving, keeping the user at the forefront.</p> <h3>Day two: Diverge</h3> <p>Here, the group focuses on smaller aspects of the user journey, brainstorming ideas and concepts that solve the problem identified in Day One.</p> <p>Participants can get as creative as they can to come up with innovative ideas to help improve the product.</p> <p>For example, they can be looking for shortcuts to simplify the user journey, instant fixes to remove any obstacles from the product or think about bigger changes to revolutionise the concept.</p> <p>This is typically a very engaging, satisfying (and sometimes tiring) day.</p> <h3>Day three: Decide</h3> <p>With dozens of ideas and concepts for how the product would solve the key problems, the focus of this day is to decide what elements are going to be carried forward and tested.</p> <p>The group can pick top three solutions and discuss what aspects or elements will need to be developed further.</p> <p>When the decisions are made, the initial user journey is redrawn, including concepts and UI features identified on the previous day.</p> <h3>Day four: Prototype</h3> <p>The UX team goes back to the office to create a prototype and a test script based on the user journey from day three.</p> <p>The prototype is typically in a <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/62700-18-practical-responsive-design-tools-and-resources-for-wireframing/">wireframe</a> format with little to no branding, as its purpose is to validate concepts and assumptions from earlier in the process.</p> <h3>Day five: Test</h3> <p>On this day, real users are brought in and the entire group observes the testing taking place. This day is always informative and can be extremely insightful!</p> <p>This part simulates the public launch of the product and speeds up the process of finding out what works and what doesn’t.</p> <p>All user information and feedback is gathered for further analysis to identify strengths, weaknesses and further steps for the concept.</p> <p>Once the full evaluation is complete, the UX team share the results with the client on how product development should follow. </p> <h3>De-risking or “failing cheap”</h3> <p>A product design sprint helps remove elements of risk from projects and therefore can avoid expensive redesigns or change of directions down the road.</p> <p>Anyone can come up with an idea but it can be very costly to really find out if it works. This way, going through various solutions, creating a prototype and then putting it in the hands of real users to test can be a very cost and time-effective practice. </p> <p>It can’t be stressed enough just how valuable product design sprints can be. The purpose of these sessions is to test and validate assumptions, focusing on how the user journey can help meet business objectives.</p> <p>Long gone are the days of launching a product, based on arbitrary ideas of what users might want and then having to make costly amendments once it launches and fails.</p> <p>The best thing about Product Design Sprints is that there are no bad outcomes. Users might instantly love the prototype and enjoy the concept, which indicates that real product development can go ahead.</p> <p>However, user test results can also be less encouraging. Some of the ideas might not work and users may struggle to understand the product.</p> <p>This is called “failing fast”, and more importantly, “failing cheap”. It only takes a week and a basic prototype to realise that amendments may be needed, rather than undergoing a full design and development cycle with significant financial investment and potential loss.</p> <p>For any business struggling with UX or lacking knowledge of how to realise an idea, product design sprints can be extremely effective in helping get on the right track fast.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68279 2016-09-13T12:33:00+01:00 2016-09-13T12:33:00+01:00 Start Me Up! Tagvenue, the Airbnb of venues Ben Davis <h3>In one sentence, what is your product/service?</h3> <p><a href="https://www.tagvenue.com/">Tagvenue</a> is an online marketplace for venues and events spaces.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8974/Screen_Shot_2016-09-09_at_13.58.00.png" alt="tagvenue" width="615" height="339"></p> <h3>What problem(s) does it solve?</h3> <p><em>For event organisers:</em></p> <p>Our smart venue search engine is the fastest way to discover and book your perfect events space.</p> <p>We take the hassle out of venue hire – with Tagvenue you can browse our collection of top London venues, enquire online 24/7 and compare quotes from your preferred options. </p> <p><em>For venue owners:</em></p> <p>Tagvenue connects venues with customers looking for a space to host their event. Like Airbnb, we allow clients to leverage the space they already have to generate additional income.</p> <p>Our smart match technology enables venues to diversify their business – some of our venues now get bookings for events they never even knew existed.</p> <h3>What were the biggest challenges involved in building the tech or growing your team?</h3> <p>The biggest challenge to date has been offering the kind of tools and solutions that the market is looking for.</p> <p>Many venues still rely on outdated bookings systems and traditional marketing methods.</p> <p>Getting venues on board by showing them the benefits of our solutions (which we’re introducing in stages), while still doing a great UX, has taken a lot of hard work and persistence.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8975/Screen_Shot_2016-09-09_at_13.58.04.png" alt="tagvenue" width="615" height="340"></p> <h3>How will the company make money?</h3> <p>Tagvenue is free for users; our venue partners pay a small marketing fee for our service.</p> <p>We also charge fees for special marketing campaigns we run on behalf of our venue partners.</p> <h3>Who is in your team?</h3> <p>We have a really international team, with people from the UK, Australia, Belarus, Guatemala, Latvia, Poland and Spain. </p> <p>This diversity makes for a really interesting and dynamic workplace environment.</p> <h3>Where would you like to be in one, three and five years' time?</h3> <p>Right now you can use us to find almost any type of events space in London, from a King’s Cross meeting room to a Brixton pop up.</p> <p>In one year, we want to bring our solution to at least five of the UK’s other big cities.</p> <p>Three years from now, we’d like to be helping venue organisers in every corner of the UK, as well as three other international markets.</p> <p>In five years, we aim to be across many markets with a fully scalable product.</p> <p>Technology is transforming the events industry, with more and more people looking to rent unique spaces and create personalised experiences.</p> <p>Here at Tagvenue we’re really excited to be at the forefront of these changes.</p> <h3>Other than your own, what are your favourite websites/apps/tools?</h3> <p>We can’t live without <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67489-slack-yammer-facebook-who-ll-win-the-collaboration-battle/">Slack</a> – we use it for everything, from sharing files to voting on new changes to the the product.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:TrainingDate/3094 2016-09-13T06:03:11+01:00 2016-09-13T06:03:11+01:00 Masterclass in Lead Generation - Singapore <p>B2B (Business-to-business) brands are increasingly turning to digital marketing tactics to generate leads, build demand, grow opportunities, engage prospects, and retain customers. As B2B marketing is significantly different from B2C marketing, this workshop aims to specifically address the unique issues and challenges faced by B2B marketers on digital platforms and social media.</p> <p>This 2-day intensive workshop explores how digital marketing can help B2B companies to fill the sales funnel with qualified leads, engage prospects in the buying journey, nurture leads, integrate with sales efforts and measure results.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68265 2016-09-09T11:52:27+01:00 2016-09-09T11:52:27+01:00 How do you put a price on digital content? Nikki Gilliland <p>But how exactly do you measure greatness? Here's a brief overview of <a href="http://www.slideshare.net/SimonBennison/how-do-you-put-a-price-on-digital-content/1">Simon's talk</a>.</p> <h3>Consider the scales of marketing justice </h3> <p>Out of the 37% of spend that goes on digital marketing (compared to 63% for traditional marketing), content is said to account for just 4%. </p> <p>This is simply because, despite the fact that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/paid-search-marketing-ppc-best-practice-guide/">paid search</a> is expensive, it is almost guaranteed to work (even if the content <em>is</em> mediocre) so that's where marketers invest their money.</p> <p>However, what many brands fail to realise is that this only yields short term gain – not long term success. </p> <p><a href="http://www.slideshare.net/SimonBennison/how-do-you-put-a-price-on-digital-content?ref=https://twitter.com/i/cards/tfw/v1/772494466414415872?cardname=player&amp;autoplay_disabled=true&amp;forward=true&amp;earned=true&amp;lang=en&amp;card_height=130" target="_blank"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8776/scales.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></a></p> <h3>Play the long game</h3> <p>Instead of gambling on a short-term fix, it is incredibly important for brands to realise the value of investing both time and money in valuable content.</p> <p>As an example of why brands should play the long game, Simon cited Making a Murderer - the Netflix documentary that took 10 years to come to fruition.</p> <p>Despite a lack of funding or any real plan, the filmmakers stood firm in the knowledge that they were creating something truly remarkable to justify their long-standing commitment.</p> <p>By being truly dedicated to telling the story of Steven Avery, they proved how investment in great content can yield greater results. </p> <h3>Create a good strategy</h3> <p>In order to produce great content, a good strategy needs to first be put in place. </p> <p>But what exactly makes for a good strategy?</p> <p>Simon outlined a three-step approach to creating one. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8773/see.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></p> <p>As well as being free of fluff (i.e. a superficial statement of the obvious combined with a generous sprinkling of buzzwords), a good strategy should always be centred around the consumer's needs.</p> <p>This 'See, Think, Do, Care' framework can help marketers work out where the content gaps are in their existing customer journeys.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8774/think.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></p> <p>That same framework can not only define the content that needs to be created, but determine how much to invest.</p> <p>The steps are as follows:</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8775/do.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="438"></p> <h3>Remember what a great campaign can achieve</h3> <p>Finally, when putting a price on content, it is important to remember what a great campaign can achieve (in comparison to a good one). </p> <p>What does a successful campaign look like? If this success comes in the form of shares or traffic – how much would you be willing to pay for it?</p> <p>Essentially, questions like these can help determine how much to invest.</p> <p>And if the results are truly great, it's going to be far more worthwhile in the long run.</p> <p><em>For more on content marketing, check out these resources:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/content-marketing-and-strategy"><em>Content marketing training courses</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64539-introducing-the-periodic-table-of-content-marketing/"><em>Introducing The Periodic Table of Content Marketing</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-future-of-content-marketing/"><em>The Future of Content Marketing</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68204 2016-08-19T10:29:29+01:00 2016-08-19T10:29:29+01:00 All the digital news stories you missed this week Ben Davis <h3>Olympics going well on Snapchat</h3> <p>In the first seven days of the Olympics, 49m unique users viewed content on Snapchat.</p> <p>That's an astonishing number, bearing in mind the platform has 150m daily active users.</p> <p>Live Stories is showing footage from international broadcasters, and Discover includes a channel using BBC, NBC and BuzzFeed created content.</p> <p>This Discover content is exclusive (see a still below from a video with Britain's gold-medalling synchronised divers).</p> <p>Advertisers have been running spots within Discover, with the revenue generated shared between the content creators and Snapchat.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8208/IMG_3093.PNG" alt="olympics snapchat" width="300"></p> <h3>Pinterest introduces Promoted Video</h3> <p>Pinterest ads now allow for video. <a href="https://business.pinterest.com/en/blog/introducing-promoted-video">The blog post announcing the move</a> stated that 'In the last year alone, we’ve seen a 60% increase in videos on Pinterest featuring everything from workouts and home projects to hair &amp; beauty tutorials'.</p> <p>Video ads are therefore an increasingly natural fit. Featured Pins sit below the video, for the user to engage with - the video below shows all.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/k7-6B3erKEk?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <h3>Tencent now worth more than Alibaba</h3> <p>Tencent (owner of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67490-10-things-you-didn-t-know-about-wechat/">WeChat</a>) is now China's most valuable tech company.</p> <p>This comes in the wake of promising second quarter results for Tencent, 52% up year-on-year at $5.4bn. Monthly active users (MAUs) on WeChat were up 34% YoY to 806m.</p> <p><a href="http://www.cnbc.com/2016/08/17/tencent-overtakes-alibaba-as-chinas-most-valuable-tech-company-as-wechat-owner-posts-strong-results.html">CNBC reports</a> data from IG showing Tencent's market capitalization at $246bn on Wednesday morning, compared to Alibaba's market capitalization of $242bn. </p> <h3>Pepsi to be first Twitter Stickers partner</h3> <p>Pepsi will get prominence in the Twitter Stickers library across 10 countries as the first sponsor brand, a move that fits nicely with Pepsi's PepsiMoji campaign.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Introducing Promoted <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Stickers?src=hash">#Stickers</a> A fun way to express your brand and engage with consumers! <a href="https://t.co/wIIDHAC0KK">https://t.co/wIIDHAC0KK</a> <a href="https://t.co/usc4HRwrPU">pic.twitter.com/usc4HRwrPU</a></p> — Twitter Advertising (@TwitterAds) <a href="https://twitter.com/TwitterAds/status/765095632185032704">August 15, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Instagram starts rollout of business profiles</h3> <p>Instagram has begun the rollout of the business tools it announced in May, across Europe.</p> <p>Business Profiles feature a 'contact' button so users can connect with brands.</p> <p>The other major feature is Insights, an analytics interface. See the video below for highlights.</p> <p><iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/173675853?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0" width="640" height="360"></iframe></p> <h3>McDonald's was giving out activity trackers in Happy Meals, had to withdraw the toy</h3> <p>As part of McDonald's increasing promotion of a healthy lifestyle (including sponsorship of the Olympics), the restaurant was giving away a pedometer with every Happy Meal.</p> <p>Due to complaints about skin irritation, the product has had to be replaced with a more conventional toy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8196/activity_tracker.jpeg" alt="mcdonald's pedometer happy meals" width="615" height="377"></p> <h3>Nationwide first UK financial services brand to advertise on Snapchat</h3> <p>A-Level results were released yesterday, with <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67682-a-look-inside-nationwide-building-society-s-new-cx-design-lab/">Nationwide</a> seizing the opportunity to promote its FlexStudent account.</p> <p>To do this, Nationwide became the first UK financial services brand to advertise on Snapchat, sponsoring both a Lens and a Geofilter.</p> <p>I'm not exactly a power-user of Snapchat, but below you can see a creepy picture of me pretending to be an ecstatic 18-year-old.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8188/IMG_3091.PNG" alt="snapchat nationwide" width="300"></p> <h3>Google Cloud Platform ready for enterprise use</h3> <p>On Tuesday Google <a href="https://cloudplatform.googleblog.com/2016/08/why-Google-Cloud-Platform-is-ready-for-your-enterprise-database-workloads.html">announced</a> that <a href="https://cloud.google.com/">Google Cloud Platform</a> is no longer in beta, and is effectively ready for enterprise use.</p> <p>Database management, machine learning and big data analytics are all now open to brands, putting the big G into Amazon Web Services' territory.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8195/Screen_Shot_2016-08-18_at_12.01.23.png" alt="google cloud platform" width="615"></p> <h3>Alipay accelerates push into Europe</h3> <p><a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-ingenico-group-alipay-idUSKCN10T0G9">Ingenico Group has signed a deal</a> with Alipay allowing the app to be used across Europe through the Ingenico payment gateway.</p> <p>Alipay has 450m active users. 10m Chinese visited Europe in 2014, with purchasing power of $21bn(!) according to Ingenico.</p> <h3>New Instagram Events channel</h3> <p>Instagram Explore now has a <a href="http://blog.instagram.com/post/149085463737/160817-eventchannels">new video channel called Events</a>, currently available in the US only.</p> <p>The content (sourced from users) will be personalized according to each user's interests and include videos from live events.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8214/Screen_Shot_2016-08-18_at_14.39.21.png" alt="instagram events" width="500" height="441"></p> <h3>Cisco cutting 14,000 of 70,000 jobs</h3> <p>The tech beast is pushing into software and the cloud, away from hardware.</p> <h3>Hike valued at $1.4bn</h3> <p>India's Hike messaging app (<a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68196-the-latest-messaging-app-unicorn-india-s-hike/">handy introduction here</a>) has announced funding of $175m led by Tencent and Foxconn.</p> <p>This points the apps valuation at $1.4bn.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8093/hike-messenger-L.jpg" alt="hike messenger" width="615"></p> <h3>Uber to use 100 self-driving cars in Pittsburgh</h3> <p>CEO Travis Kalanick <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2016-08-18/uber-s-first-self-driving-fleet-arrives-in-pittsburgh-this-month-is06r7on">revealed as such to Bloomberg</a>. Each car will have an engineer to take control where needed and monitor the drive.</p> <p>The rides will be free.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68128 2016-08-15T16:04:27+01:00 2016-08-15T16:04:27+01:00 Do startups and small businesses really need a CTO? Ben Davis <p>I recently spoke to Will Grant, a director at D4 Software, which runs <a href="http://ctoforhire.uk/">CTOforhire.uk</a>.</p> <p>We discussed company culture, the skills shortage and digital trends.</p> <h3><strong>Why did you decide to pitch technical consultancy like a SaaS (software as a service)?</strong></h3> <p>We wanted to somehow 'package up' our experience and make it available 'pay as you go' to people.</p> <p>It gives customers the best of both worlds - strategic insight and advice with a low financial commitment. </p> <p>If you said "consultancy" to a startup they'd probably run a mile. That's because they'd expect it to be overpriced and deliver no practical benefits. Just a lot of hot air.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7839/office_space_consultants.jpg" alt="consultants" width="500"></p> <p>But the more <a href="https://econsultancy.com/search/?only=BlogPost&amp;q=start%20me%20up">startups</a> we worked with, the more we realised that what they needed most wasn't more code, more features and more tech. They needed advice.</p> <p>We don't mean that to sound arrogant, we actually did this because we felt bad about entrepreneurs spending their life savings on an idea we felt had zero chance of working. Or in many cases, even launching.  </p> <p>The best code is no code at all. There are no bugs, it runs fast and it's very cheap.</p> <p>If you can achieve the outcome that your customer wants with an <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67815-why-marketers-are-failing-to-make-the-most-of-automated-emails/">automated email</a> or an online google form, then you should do that first and scale up when you really need to and there's proven demand for it.</p> <p>So, we spend most of our time figuring out how little tech a startup can get away with: then implementing that. It takes a lot of experience, but it's not a full time job, so CTO for hire is the perfect way to package it.</p> <p>It's healthy for us as a business too - as we grow the 'CTO for Hire' client base - if clients turn our services 'on and off' month to month, it makes us less reliant on one single customer and more resilient to fluctuations in workload. </p> <p>We also wanted to make sure that startups who use our services could go on to raise investment without a full time CTO.</p> <p>We have secured a relationship with Ascension Ventures and their CEO Jean de Fougerolles, as a Venture Capital fund who recognises that we are as good as a CTO for early stage / MVP startups.</p> <p><em>The virtual CTO is priced liked software-as-a-service</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7837/Screen_Shot_2016-08-08_at_16.28.18.png" alt="virtual cto" width="450" height="381"></p> <h3><strong>Leadership and culture are a big part of digital transformation. What have been the biggest changes to tech and I.T. roles over the past few years? </strong></h3> <p>There are several big technology trends that are still unfolding throughout our economy, like the railways and electricity before them.</p> <p>The biggest challenges that tech leaders face, particularly in large organisations, have been shifting people's mindsets to the new realities of software, the internet, and mobile. </p> <p>One of the biggest trends is what we call "software is eating the world". It comes from an essay written in 2011 by venture capitalist Marc Andreessen.</p> <p>It says that almost all companies and industries are becoming software companies. </p> <p>From music, to fashion, to logistics, to financial services. Software is now an indispensable part of what they do. And in many cases, it's the only way they can differentiate themselves.</p> <p>With that in mind, all incumbents need to be thinking about how to deliver software more rapidly and to a better quality. </p> <p>For example, retail banks are now software companies: think back to 2012 when RBS failed to update a computer system correctly and the bank couldn't process electronic transfers for a few days.</p> <p>The branches were open, but the bank was effectively shut down because its software wasn't working.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7838/rbs.jpg" alt="rbs" width="500"></p> <p>Traditional retail banks are now software companies with local support offices in every town, but for some of them, awareness of how to build and run a good software product hasn't broken through to board level yet. </p> <p>Another big trend that's happening right now is the move to mobile.</p> <p>The smartphone is already bigger than the PC ever was, and it's growing at a shocking rate.</p> <p>Right now, any new systems that are being developed need to be designed for the mobile device first. But sadly many companies are still treating mobile as an afterthought.</p> <h3><strong>Every CEO has thought about taking a coding course (probably). But what else should they be doing?</strong></h3> <p>While programming computers is, of course, the highest form of art there is - I'm not totally sold on the "everyone needs to learn to code" meme.</p> <p>In our experience, no software project went wrong because the developers didn't know how to write code.</p> <p>It's almost always about planning, communication, resource, external factors like markets and deadlines - and very rarely about the code itself. </p> <p>So yes, it helps a CEO understand what their engineers are doing all day, but does it make them more innovative and successful: probably not.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7840/Screen_Shot_2016-08-08_at_16.44.25.png" alt="learn to code" width="270"></p> <h3><strong>What are your thoughts on the much talked about 'skills shortage', within marketing and business more generally? </strong></h3> <p>What seems to be happening in our economy, is that there's a race to the bottom and the top.</p> <p>So there's lots of poorly paid jobs around, and then there are smaller and smaller groups of very smart people making lots of money. Not just tech geeks, but entrepreneurs, financiers, pop stars, football players, you name it. </p> <p>This is probably (at least partly) caused by the leverage that the internet gives you. You can go global from anywhere.</p> <p>Hiring and retaining good people has been the hardest part of my job for many years.</p> <p>I'm not sure it's a skills shortage, I think it's more that the freedom and democratisation of the 'career' process brought about by the web has meant we all have an enormous pool of opportunity to draw from. </p> <p>In the '90s, you would maybe hire an engineer because they had the right skills. Now, you can search LinkedIn for 100 people with exactly the right skills, but finding someone who is right for your business is still really hard. </p> <p>Google, Facebook, et al have attempted to 'brute force' the retention issue; give their teams so much free stuff (dental, healthcare, every meal, gym, laundry, etc) that they feel locked in.</p> <p>Maybe accepting that people will move on is a more realistic approach.</p> <p>Make their time at your company a two-way thing, and make people feel like they can naturally move on with no hard feelings.  </p> <p>But - we've had areas of the economy that have operated like this for years.</p> <p>Take video games. Most of them don't make money, but the ones that do, make a lot of money.</p> <p>So we have a model of game publishing companies that take bets on games, learning from their mistakes all the time, and hoping that sooner or later they'll win big. </p> <p>If we want our industries to keep up in this "winner takes all" economy, not just in terms of 'skills' in the traditional sense, but also in terms of developing individuals with experience and networks of contacts: we need to keep taking bets.</p> <p><em><strong>To benchmark your own digital skills against industry peers, take Econsultancy’s <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/digital-skills-index-lite/">Digital Skills Index</a>.</strong></em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68183 2016-08-12T13:01:36+01:00 2016-08-12T13:01:36+01:00 10 spectacular digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Don’t forget to download the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium" target="_blank">Internet Statistics Compendium</a> for more, and ready, set, go…</p> <h3><strong>Only 21% of businesses track return on digital marketing spend</strong></h3> <p><a href="https://www.ruleranalytics.com/Are-Businesses-Using-Analytics-&amp;-Call-Tracking-Effectively.pdf" target="_blank">New research</a> from Ruler Analytics has highlighted how marketers are failing to practice what they preach, with the industry being the worst at measuring the ROI of its marketing activity.</p> <p>Out of an index of 100, marketers and PRs scored just 28.6.</p> <p>In contrast, retailers are the most likely to be using analytics, closely followed by the travel and tourism industry.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8000/ROI_marketers.PNG" alt="" width="400" height="594"></p> <h3><strong>Brits will spend over 3.8bn hours reading about the Olympics online</strong></h3> <p>Teads suggests that there is a huge opportunity for brands to reach beyond traditional audiences this summer, as Olympic fever sweeps the nation.</p> <p>A study found that 55% of people who aren’t normally interested in sports plan to watch events in Rio. What’s more, 76% of them plan to read Olympic-related articles online.</p> <p>Overall, Brits will reportedly spend over half an hour each day reading sporting content this summer, amounting to 3.8bn hours in total.</p> <h3><strong>Official suppliers of Wimbledon comprise less than 1% of tournament conversion</strong></h3> <p>A new study by Black Swan has found that being an official supplier of a high profile tournament doesn’t guarantee automatic success. </p> <p>When comparing Pimms (an unofficial supplier) and Lanson (an official supplier), the latter ranked seventh in terms of volume of mentions, while the former ranked second out of nine.</p> <p>This demonstrates how sponsorship deals are no longer enough, with brands now needing to create opportunities for social sharing and earned coverage.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8002/Wimbledon_official_suppliers.PNG" alt="" width="750" height="493"></p> <h3><strong>Online conversation means that hotels can no longer rely on legacy reputation</strong></h3> <p>A new <a href="http://pages.crimsonhexagon.com/WC-2016-08-01-IR-AnalysingTopEuroHotels_Registration.html" target="_blank">report from Crimson Hexagon</a> has highlighted how the openness of customer feedback continues to disrupt the travel and accommodation industries.</p> <p>With 78% of conversation on hotels involving people seeking or giving feedback, brands can no longer rely on the long-standing reputation of their brand.</p> <p>Out of the most-talked about topics, 14% related to comfort and luxury, while 9% focused on convenience of hotel location.</p> <h3><strong>Adobe reports Pokemon Go and Brexit impact consumer goods prices</strong></h3> <p>Adobe’s monthly Digital Price Index has identified how the value of online consumer goods has fallen in the last six months.</p> <p>For the UK, Brexit is continuing to impact travel prices, with flights to London falling 13.3% and hotel prices in the capital dropping 9.8% since the EU referendum.</p> <p>Despite the explosion in popularity of Pokemon Go, the report also found that sales value for Pokemon items fell 2.9% month-on-month. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8013/pokemon.jpg" alt="" width="750" height="599"></p> <h3><strong>UK viewers clock up over 165,000 tweets during the Olympic opening ceremony</strong></h3> <p>With a live UK audience of 1.838m, data from Kantar Media has revealed how the UK reacted online during the Friday night opening ceremony.</p> <p>Londoners were the most vocal during the coverage, accounting for 15% of unique authors tweeting throughout. Moreover, men were the most active, making up 60% of the most active authors.</p> <p>Out of the 165,409 tweets overall, there was a third more positive tweets than negative ones, with the most common emotion being admiration and respect for those involved.</p> <h3><strong>60% of travel searches start on a mobile device</strong></h3> <p>Research by Hitwise, a division of Connexity, has revealed how consumers are heavily relying on mobile phones during the early stages of holiday planning.</p> <p>Based on the activity of 3m UK shoppers and 1m mobile devices, a study found that 60% of all travel site searches originated from a mobile device.</p> <p>In terms of the subject, 83% of searches were for the ‘best time’ to visit a destination, 68% for ‘flights from’ and 83% were for ‘flight status’.</p> <p>The report also found that mobile phones were the device of choice while on holiday, with ‘near me’ generating 88% of searches.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8009/Travel_search.PNG" alt="" width="543" height="377"></p> <h3><strong>81% of organisations have problems achieving a single customer view</strong></h3> <p>The 2016 Digital Marketer Report from Experian has found that, despite 95% of organisations wanting to achieve a single view of the customer, 81% find difficulty in doing so.</p> <p>The biggest obstacles include using technology to integrate customer data in real time, as well as gaining access to data from across organisations. </p> <p>With 95% of enterprise companies planning to run cross-channel campaigns next year, it is vital to overcome these challenges in order to do so.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8012/single_customer_view.PNG" alt="" width="620" height="520"></p> <h3><strong>Over 90% of publishers find off-site distribution has positive impact</strong></h3> <p>AOL have just released its <a href="http://www.aolplatforms.com/blog/2016-publisher-outlook-monetizing-age-mobile-video" target="_blank">Publisher Outlook Report</a>, based on insight from 300 premium publishers in the US.</p> <p>Despite initial panic, opinion about third-party publishing platforms now looks to be largely positive, with 90% believing distributed media has had a positive impact. Likewise, 53% deem it ‘extremely positive’</p> <p>With publishers receiving 25-50% of traffic via syndication referrals, it has become an essential part of strategy for many.</p> <h3><strong>25% of influencers asked not to disclose brand involvement</strong></h3> <p>A new survey by SheSpeaks has found that online influencers are being asked by brands to deny compensation.</p> <p>In a survey of 347 online influencers, while 95% said they were upfront with their audience about taking payment from a brand, 25% also reported that they had been specifically asked not to divulge the information.</p> <p>Despite the Federal Trade Commission stipulating that compensation or free products should be disclosed, even large corporations like <a href="https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2016/07/warner-bros-settles-ftc-charges-it-failed-adequately-disclose-it" target="_blank">Warner Bros have failed</a> to be up-front.</p>