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Tech Marketing Guide to B2B

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Tech Marketer's Guide to B2B

News, video, events, blogs about Technology Business and Marketing for high tech business-to-business from IDG Knowledge Hub.

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The Power Of Earned Media In Social Images

TechCrunch

Brands are spending large amounts of money on sponsorships, in particular in sports, which are seen as a unique way of engaging emotionally with fans. Ideally the brand will be featured prominently in an image of a star player scoring a key goal for the home side and reap the benefits of being connected to a moment of collective glory.

Anecdotally brands get “a lot” of exposure for their sponsorships of teams and athletes via images shared on social media, but up till now, no one has been able to quantify this valuable audience.

Luckily for brands, the convergence of existing computer vision technology and the recent advances in machine learning are changing the game. Large-scale analysis of social media images to identify brand logos and gather useful information about audience and engagement is now emerging as a credible approach to earned media measurement, especially for sport sponsorship. It is now possible to look inside the image to detect faces, objects and brand logos at a scale, speed and accuracy that was impossible a few years ago. These new approaches reveal huge audiences and high levels of engagement that were previously invisible. 

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5 habits of effective data-driven organizations

Venture Beat

Want to master the CMO role? Join us for GrowthBeat Summit on June 1-2 in Boston, where we’ll discuss how to merge creativity with technology to drive growth. Space is limited and we’re limiting attendance to CMOs and top marketing execs. Request your personal invitation here!


A senior banker – let’s call him Jack — was on a conference call attempting to close out an acquisition. The stakes were high. It was a multibillion-dollar deal and the negotiation of the final price hinged on the measurement of the target’s EBITDA, the Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization. Jack argued that the EBITDA was lower; the opposite party asserted it was higher.

In the middle of the lengthy, convoluted discussion of the numbers, a junior associate realized that, in fact, the other side was right. She passed Jack a note letting him know this. Jack stared at the associate with contempt and proceeded to argue even more vehemently for the lower price. He literally just spoke louder than the other party, cutting them off at every opportunity. And he won. The other side just gave up. In the associate’s words, “I knew Jack was wrong. Jack knew Jack was wrong. The other side knew Jack was wrong, and Jack still won!”

How can we build teams and organizations that don’t succumb to the jerk who just yells more, argues louder? We all want to be data-driven instead of being driven by supposition, ego, and ideology

Over the last two years, I’ve had the opportunity to meet with analysts and leaders inside data-driven organizations as well as many that were not so data driven. Surprisingly, I’ve learned that being data driven has little correlation to size or geography and only a marginal correlation to industry. Data-driven companies range from small health care firms to large banks and even include mid-sized non-profits. And while the traditional categorizations of businesses have little to offer, I’ve observed a few common characteristics:

1. Size doesn’t matter, but variety does. You would think that a data-driven organization has a lot of data, petabytes of data, exabytes of data. In some cases, this is true. But in general, size matters only to a point. For example, I encountered a large technology firm with petabytes of data but only three business analysts. What really matters is the variety of the data. Are people asking questions in different business functions? Are they measuring cost and quality of service, instrumenting marketing campaigns, or observing employee retention by team? Just getting a report at month end on profits? You’re probably not data driven.

2. Everyone has access to some data. Almost no one has access to all of it. There are very few cultures where everyone can see nearly everything. Data breach threats and privacy requirements are top of mind for most data teams. And while these regulations certainly stunt the ability of the company to make data available, most data-driven companies reach a stage where they have developed clear business processes to address these issues.

3. Data is all over the place. One would think that the data is well organized and well maintained — as in a library, where every book is stored in one place. In fact, most data-driven cultures are exactly the opposite. Data is everywhere — on laptops, desktops, servers.

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Not All Social Media Platforms are Equal – How to Pick the Ones That Work for You

Soshable

Launching a new business? Or promoting an existing one? Either way, my guess is that social media figures pretty high on your priority list when it comes to marketing your brand.

Over 70% of all online adults in the United States have a Facebook account. For the first time ever, 56% of senior citizens are on social media. That figure stands at 89% for young ’uns, or users from 18 to 29 years of age. The millennial generation, consisting of young adults born between 1980 to 2000 and accounting for nearly 30% of the US population, see social media as their primary means of connecting with brands. Over half of them claim that “social opinions” directly influence their purchase decisions.

So we all agree that being on social media is unavoidable if you want to be relevant to today’s consumer.

With the explosion of social media platforms, the question now arises, “which social media platforms will give me actual results?” And this, my friends, is the most sensible place to begin your social media journey.

Research Your Options

The first step to social media success lies in being active on the right platforms and engaging with your target audience in the form that they prefer best. But before you make a choice of which platform would work for your business, you need to first figure out what each platform has to offer you and then proceed by eliminating the least attractive ones.

Before we analyze each platform’s pros and cons, let’s see where they all stand with respect to each other.

The data above clearly shows Facebook as the leader in terms of number of users, followed by LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter – in that order. This data also shows us how in a matter of a couple of years, Twitter has gone from being the third largest network to a lowly number five. At the same time, we see Facebook stagnating in its usage figures in the last year with a barely-there upward blip in 2013.

Let’s arm ourselves with some more facts about the top five social networks before we decide which ones work best for our business.

Facebook offers brands the widest possible reach – with 1.34 billion active users per month, Facebook is light-years ahead of competition. As a platform it is marginally more popular with women than men, it’s also more popular among Hispanics and Whites as compared to African Americans. A trend that has been accelerating in recent years is the exodus of teens from the site with 3 million teens dropping off in the last three years.

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5 innovative ideas for digital journalism from Build The News

Journalism.co.uk

The third edition of Build The News, a two-day hackathon organised by The Times and Sunday Times, took place last weekend at the News UK offices in London. Around a hundred talented developers and student journalists brought innovative ideas and prototypes to the table, competing for both the student and staff categories.

The three topics proposed by the organisers before the event were: interaction – if news organisations are getting rid of comments, how can readers be engaged?; social sources – how to ensure UGC is fairly credited; and context – how to explain to readers the wider situation and context around a certain story.

Participating teams tackled not only these categories, but many others. Here are five ideas developed and presented at Build The News:

Interactive Debate

May’s General Election is fast approaching and news organisations are looking for creative and interactive ways of engaging their audiences. The hackathon’s winning team developed a tool that can be easily applied to this particular event, but also to other types of video interviews.

Once given a video, the system generates a transcription, identifies the speakers and provides a written summary of the keywords and main topics discussed. Interactive Debate also uses natural language processing and sentiment analysis software to identify the emotional charge of the participants.

The tool can also serve journalists by providing an analytics dashboard of viewers’ engagement with the content, from most viewed to most shared or commented on.

“I have a long-standing interest in working with transcriptions”, said Pietro Passarelli, one of the team members and current MSc Computer Science student at University College London. “Having worked in the media industry on broadcast documentaries, I am always considering ways in which to make the process easier, faster and more insightful”.

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IDC: Serial Analysis of “Internet Plus” and Transformation of Traditional Industry – Media Industry is Experiencing Disruptive Transformation

IDC PMS4colorversion 1 IDC: Serial Analysis of “Internet Plus” and Transformation of Traditional Industry – Media Industry is Experiencing Disruptive Transformation

Beijing, March 25, 2015 – In the recent two years, IDC visited more than 30 traditional enterprises and industry clusters proceeding from the emerging mode of Internet such as e-commerce, and obtained a deep insight into the impact of Internet on traditional industry transformation and upgrade. Yolanda Zhang, Research Manager of IDC China believes that, “in the Two Sessions (the National Peoples’ Congress and Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference), Internet Plus is among the hottest vocabularies. The State for the first time encourages and supports the development of Internet as a strategic emerging industry. It can be foreseen that Internet will play a significant role in promoting industry upgrade and leading the new economic development of the whole country.”

In the upgrading process of traditional industries, advertising and media is the first industry impacted by the wave of Internet. In recent years, with the value of Internet media increasingly accepted by the market, the proportion of spending on Internet advertising has expanded steadily.

IDC analysts believe that, the impact of “Internet Plus” on the transformation and upgrading of media advertising is mainly reflected in the following four aspects:

1. Expand media resources and increase media forms: The development of Internet applications, for instance in e-commerce, has expanded the channel resources of traditional media communications. New media platforms are formed such as Web portals, e-commerce platforms, APP clients, and social media platforms, which are able to provide advertisements in the form of page ads, implanted ads, and ad search alliance.

2. Deliver ads more precisely: The traditional advertising models seek to improve  brand awareness by delivering ads on mass media platforms such as China Central Television (CCTV) and leveraging the maximum range of “bombardment”, so as to foster consumer trust and boost sales revenue growth. Advertising models based on E-commerce ecosystem tend to first filter out potential target customers through accurate analysis of user data, and then deliver ads to the targeted customers. Compared to traditional advertising models, they are more accurate and cost effective.

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Join The IDG Contributor Network!

IDG Enterprise—the leading enterprise technology media company composed of CIO, Computerworld, CSO, DEMO, InfoWorld, ITworld and Network World—has accepted more than 100 technology experts into the IDG Contributor Network. Launched in June 2014, the IDG Contributor Network provides a platform for technology and security practitioners and experts to share their expertise on the most pressing technology topics—both broad and niche—with their peers through blog posts on IDG Enterprise’s branded sites.

Technology decision-makers often reference peers as a top source of information. This was reconfirmed in the 2014 IDG Enterprise Role & Influence study, highlighting that peers and technology content sites are the top information resources relied on by IT leaders to help them be effective in their role. The IDG Contributor Network unites these two tremendous resources and encourages individuals working in the IT trenches, analysts, researchers, authors, professors and other experts to share their knowledge.

“Technology is transforming business at a breakneck speed. By adding this opportunity for peer voices to our established sites, the IDG Contributor Network provides unique perspectives on technology and leadership issues. We have been very impressed with the blog posts shared by our contributors,” said Joyce Carpenter, director of the IDG Contributor Network, IDG US Media. “As we look to expand the number of contributors to make the IDG Contributor Network one of the largest and most robust communities of tech writers, we encourage individuals who have technology expertise to share to apply.”

 

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Is Responsive Design The Right Way To Design?

Medium

Editor’s Note: I’m not a technologist, however I am someone that thinks about mobile frequently from a marketing and product perspective. Below are a few of my thoughts on the role of mobile web and RWD. Comments and criticism are welcome and appreciated.


If you had asked me a few years ago whether all web developers should be building sites with responsive design, my answer would have been an emphatic “yes.”

However, I’ve been giving that question a lot of thought recently, and I think my opinion has changed.

For those of you that need a quick refresher (or for my family and friends, who read these posts despite not understanding a word of them): Responsive design is an approach to web design that attempts to adapt and resize the layout of a website across several device types. In essence, the theory suggests that a mobile and tablet version of a website should match the experience of the desktop version.

One of the biggest arguments to support responsive design is that web visitors are increasingly viewing sites from a number of different devices, and therefore, they shouldn’t have to re-learn how to navigate your site each time.

This argument makes a lot of sense. An increasing share of web consumption is occurring on mobile devices. These users don’t create a distinction between mobile and desktop consumption, so why should publishers? It also doesn’t hurt that designing a responsive site is often cheaper to create and maintain, as it doesn’t require developers to repeat changes across a number of different templates.

However, I’ve started to believe (at least for now) that following this approach may dismiss the nuances of different reading behaviors, and ignores the strengths and weaknesses that each device offers.

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Microsoft Proving it is a Software and Services Company

ZDNet

If anyone still had doubts about whether Microsoft has moved from a “devices and services” company to a “productivity and platforms” one, those misgivings should be gone as of today, March 1.

As rumored, Microsoft has struck a deal with Samsung to preload several Microsoft applications and services on the the new Samsung Galaxy S6 Android phone. At least so far, this news looks to overshadow the new low-/mid-range Windows Phone devices expected to be unveiled by Microsoft and its mobile OEM partners at Mobile World Congress this week.

The Galaxy S6 comes with all the key Google apps preinstalled, as one would expect. But it also is preloaded with Microsoft’s OneNote note-taking app and OneDrive cloud storage app/service. Samsung’s spec sheet says the S6 and S6 Edge will offer users 115 GB of free OneDrive storage for two years. From screen shots on various sites, it looks like Skype is preloaded on these new Samsung devices, too, and available via a Microsoft apps folder.

Microsoft’s mobile Office apps for Android are not part of the preload deal, which was originally reported, and later amended, by SamMobile.com. Users who want Office Mobile for Android can download it; updated versions of the mobile Office apps for Android phones are coming at a future date.

In recent months, Microsoft’s interest and ability to build really nice cross-platform applications for iOS and Android has become more evident. OneNote, OneDrive, Skype and the evolving Office universal apps are available for iOS, Android and Windows/ Windows Phone.

But today is the first time (I believe) that Microsoft has struck a deal with a non-Windows/Windows Phone OEM to preload any of its apps and services on its devices. Technically, I guess you could count the Apple-Microsoft deal via which Microsoft’s Bing search is the Web-search fallback for Siri as another example of an OEM preload deal. But to me, today’s Microsoft-Samsung deal is more of a true first in this category.

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A New Industry: These Groups Love Freelancers

Jeremiah Owyang

A booming market emerges: The Freelancer Economy is predicted to be 40% of the American workforce in just five years, and the startups that power them have been funded over $10B – and a whole new class of organizations have emerged to support, empower, and connect freelancers.

Over the last decade, the Social Media industry birthed many groups to serve content providers. The birth of the social media industry resulted in many realizing that the audience gave way to participants. Nearly everyone is now creating, sharing, chatting, rating and ranking alongside the mainstream media. Just as we saw in the social media and blogging industry the rise of organizations to cater to these new influencers, such as BlogHer, Federated Media, Clever Girls, Glam and IZEA to offer events, gifts, sample products, services, and more, we’re beginning to see it repeat.

The Collaborative Economy industry is birthing many groups to help service providers. That same metaphor is now repeating in the Collaborative Economy. Individuals, called “micro-entrepreneurs” or “freelancers” or “Makers” or “hosts/drivers/taskrabbits” are now creating their own goods and experiences, alongside Fortune 500 companies. To help standardize the language being used in the Collaborative Economy, these folks are called Providers, who offer rides, homes, goods, and services to Partakers, learn more about the three Ps, on this definitive post.


Social Media vs Collaborative Economy: Reach and Intimacy

Trusted Peer Cohort Reach Intimacy
Social Media Influencers, Bloggers, and YouTube celebs. High, they can reach thousands to millions of eyeballs in a single tweet, and with engagement, a network effect. Low, they’re unable to have meaningful converations with all of their following.
Providers, Freelancers, Airbnb Hosts, and RideShare Drivers. Low, they can only reach those in proximity they’re working with. High, since peers trust them for rides and experiences, they’ll trust them for recommendations of other offerings.

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