FRAMINGHAM, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)— Today at the International Data Corporation (IDC) Global Regional Advisory Council event, Meredith Whalen, IDC Senior Vice President, presented The Implication of Shifting Technology Buying Centers on Your Business, based on a new survey of 1,200 line of business executives. According to the survey, 61% of enterprise technology projects are now funded by the business rather than the IT department, and IT spending driven by the functional business areas will continue to outpace IT spending by the IT organization in the future. Marketing takes the top position with a 5-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 9%.
“Technology has long been central to improving business processes, enabling greater speed, efficiency, and reliability,” said Meredith Whalen. “As businesses embrace the 3rd Platform, built on cloud services, big data analytics, mobile computing, and social networking technologies, they are taking the critical first steps toward business process transformation and, in some cases, business model transformation. With such high stakes, the business is increasingly taking a front seat in technology initiatives.”
In just a few short years, we have become accustomed to having social media in our everyday lives — both personal and business. Events of the past two weeks highlight just how disruptive the medium has become in so many areas of the business environment.
Important Details: We have reached the point where social media is now woven into the fabric of nearly all sectors of communication and information flow. A few events in the past couple of weeks show just how pervasive social media has become and how it has really affected and disrupted the many areas it touches. At times, we all feel the frenetic pace of constant communications in our 24/7 always-on world, fed in large part by social media activity.
Social media has created an explosion of information that, in turn, has led to a boom in analytic companies. We now have nearly 200 firms involved in the social media analytics space.
The speed of communications has forced other media and formats to ramp up their frequency and volume of communications, which has had the effect of forced errors.
Financial markets are (naturally) engaged with huge market cap values for Facebook and LinkedIn and all the buzz about Twitter’s upcoming IPO.
Enterprises need to adjust, as some are still learning that social media is not just another means to push your message. It is a two-way communication and the market can talk back.
Implications: One effect of the information explosion and the creation of new companies watching and tracking social media traffic is that they are a threat and disruption to many market research firms. Some of these 200 social media analytic companies, including the likes of Crimson Hexagon, DataSift and Recorded Future, are creating products to help companies watch markets, prospects, and competitors. These are some of the very tasks that market research firms have done in the past and they are feeling this impact.
Sometimes we want to shout out, “Can’t we all just please slow down?” The stream and frequency of social information seems to amp up everything. In this hectic world, running at this pace can lead to mistakes. We all make mistakes — but just as the pace has quickened, it seems the frequency of mistakes has picked up too. Just last week, we received:
An e-mail promo about Valentine’s Day;
A link to a New York Post story about the advertising industry that was dated 2008;
An offer from a research firm (dated February) to get all of the 2013 predictions now.
The pace, and what seems like a race to produce more and send more messages, leads to this kind of activity.
There is a race to the money. The money is enormous in this sector and that attracts more investment and more new players trying to get into the mix. Naturally, Twitter’s IPO created a buzz and stoked more of the money fire. Consider that Facebook’s value (market cap) is over $115 billion and LinkedIn is at $27 billion. Those are huge numbers.
Not all enterprises have come around to realizing that social media is a two-way communication and not just another channel to push your brand; rather, it is a means to communicate with the market. Many companies have designated a person or group to monitor social media sites to see what is being posted about them and to react when needed. When companies don’t listen and respond to their clients, those stories can go viral and have damaging effects. Consider this story of the angry British Airways customer. Not only did he try to get the company’s attention directly, and then try via social media, but he finally resorted to purchasing a promoted tweet to get heard. Of course, that tweet went viral.
As we consider social media, there is a tendency to try to classify the companies into a single category. In this case, that does not effectively show the full impact of social media on the industry.
Almost half (47%) of U.S. smartphone users ignore in-app ads, and 43% find them disruptive, according to a new Forrester study. Only 28% found these ads to be relevant — and just a quarter said the ads were inventive or creative. Based on these findings, the report concludes that marketers are not crafting ads carefully enough to suit the smaller smartphone screen and appeal to the task-oriented mindset of on-the-go consumers. But it also underscores the potential for in-app ads as 40% recall seeing ads for an app, app upgrade or brand and product in an app.
Plus, half of smartphone owners who use apps and have seen at least one in-app ad have researched and/or made a purchase after seeing an ad. Ads for app upgrades are the most likely to result in a purchase (20%), while those for products or services saw the lowest conversion rate, at 11%.
In-app ads for new apps or apps related to ones they are using were the most pervasive type of ads — seen by 47% — followed up ads for app upgrades (40%), and brands or products (37%). The balance included either none of the above or survey participants couldn’t recall the ad type.
The Forrester study emphasizes the importance of getting advertising right in apps, given the growing adoption of mobile devices and apps generally. Last year, about two-thirds of all mobile phone users had apps, up 22% from 2011. And 80% of mobile time takes place in apps rather than the mobile Web, according to comScore.
A new survey from content marketing provider Skyword found that nearly half of the respondents polled have a formal content marketing strategy, but only 25 percent are measuring the results of their social media content marketing efforts. Conducted by Unisphere Research, the survey included 217 participants from the readership base of CRM Magazine and EContent Magazine, reflecting a variety of industries and business sizes.
The survey covered a number of content marketing trends, focusing on how organizations produce and distribute content. According to the findings, the number one reason marketers are implementing content marketing initiatives is to engage customers and prospects, with 68 percent of respondents claiming it is their primary goal.
While 46 percent of the survey participants report their organizations have formal content marketing strategies, 37 percent claim they are working on developing content marketing programs.
For the organizations leveraging content marketing programs, 48 percent say their efforts are resulting in engagement with customers and prospects, and 41 percent are seeing an increase in brand awareness.
FRAMINGHAM, Mass.– The worldwide smart connected device market, comprised of PCs, tablets, and smartphones, is forecast to grow 27.8% year over year in 2013, slightly lower than the 30.3% growth in 2012. The growth will be driven by tablet and smartphone shipments, while the PC outlook has been lowered by 10% in 2013. As a result, the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker expects tablet shipments to surpass total PC shipments (desktop plus portable PCs) in the fourth quarter of 2013 (4Q13). PCs shipments are still expected to be greater than tablet shipments for the full year, but IDC forecasts tablet shipments will surpass total PC shipments on an annual basis by the end of 2015. Smartphones will continue to ship in high volumes, surpassing 1.4 billion units in 2015 and accounting for 69% of all smart connected device shipments worldwide.
In terms of shipment value, the worldwide smart connected device market will again exhibit double-digit year-over-year growth of 10.6% in 2013, but this growth will gradually slow to just 3.1% in 2017. The tapering revenue forecast reflects the increasing impact of low-cost smartphones and the white box tablet market. Worldwide smart connected device value is expected to be $622.4 billion in 2013, of which $423.1 billion will come from the sub-$350 smartphone and sub-$350 tablet segments collectively. “At a time when the smartphone and tablet markets are showing early signs of saturation, the emergence of lower-priced devices will be a game-changer,” said Megha Saini, Research Analyst with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker. “Introducing new handsets and tablet devices at cheaper price points along with special initiatives like trade-in programs from Apple and BestBuy will accelerate the upgrade cycle and expand the total addressable market overnight.”
Business-to-business (B2B) marketers are already looking ahead to 2014, and the outlook for the year seems positive. The Sagefrog Marketing Group surveyed US B2B marketing and management professionals from a cross-section of industries in the summer of 2013 and found that 45% of respondents expected to see an increase in budgets in the next year, while 52% thought their outlays would remain the same.
The top four most popular marketing channels for B2Bs were all digital, according to the survey. Websites were the most uniformly employed technique, used by 85% of those polled. Email marketing was second at 72%, followed by social media (67%) and search engine optimization (56%). Just under half of respondents relied on trade shows, while four in 10 used direct marketing.
IDG Enterprise’s 2013 Customer Engagement Research Details the Role Content Marketing and Social Media Play in the Technology Purchase Process and what Customers Expect from Vendors
Framingham, Mass. – September 18, 2013 – IDG Enterprise—the media company comprising Computerworld, InfoWorld, Network World, CIO, DEMO, CSO, CIO Executive Council, ITworld, CFOworld and CITEworld —shares insights on how IT decision-makers (ITDMs) use and share content throughout the IT purchase process from the 2013 Customer Engagement research. The research also delves into ITDM’s vendor expectations, providing actionable data for tech marketers.
ITDMs Search, Read and Share Trusted Content
During the IT purchase process, ITDMs download an average of eight informational assets to help guide their purchase decision, from product reviews, product demos/literature, technology news and feature articles (see infographic). Additionally, ITDMs are turning to video at the beginning of the purchase process, watching IT news, interviews with industry experts and technology primers. During their content search, 86% of IT heads register for content and almost half appreciate content being delivered to them based on their search history. When beneficial content is found, ITDMs do not keep it to themselves, the majority (93%) share this content. Top methods for sharing useful content are email, in-person or phone conversations and sharing on LinkedIn. During the purchase process, ITDMs at enterprise organizations are most likely to share viewed or downloaded white papers, emails directly received and case studies.
“Big data” has become a catchall term for the vast amount of information generated by our digital lifestyles, and the analytics techniques for dealing with it all to improve marketing, products, and business intelligence. It’s become very fashionable to decry the value of “big data” for marketing, with many pundits and consultants calling it “no big deal.”
I believe in “big data” just like I believe in the power of all data to transform our lives. Just look at the powerful applications already emerging in healthcare, world hunger, global economics, and even for those for whom hockey is more important than life itself, sport competiveness.
The opportunity in marketing and business intelligence is just as strong. Our digital lifestyles generate a tremendous amount of personal and behavioral data – in fact, IDC estimates that by 2020, the number of commercial transactions on the Internet (both B2B and B2C) will reach 450 billion per day. McKinseyforecasts that demand for “big data” in the U.S. will create up to 190,000 high-paying jobs requiring deep analytical skills by 2018.
Used responsibly, all that data has a very meaningful impact on our lives and the economy. It’s time to clear up some of the myths surrounding big data and what it can do for marketers.
Twitter Inc., the microblogging service that plans an initial public offering, is outpacing its bigger competitors Facebook Inc. (FB) and Google Inc. (GOOG) in a crucial growth area: mobile advertising. Ads on smartphones and tablets will make up more than half of Twitter’s ad revenue this year, according to EMarketer Inc. That puts it ahead of Facebook, which generated 41 percent of its ad revenue from mobile promotions in the latest quarter. Google, the largest search engine, is estimated to get slightly less than one quarter of its revenue this year from mobile ads, EMarketer said.
While Twitter makes up just a tiny slice of the $16.7 billion projected mobile-ad market this year, it has the advantage of concentrating on mobile from an earlier stage and from a smaller base. That may help assuage investor concerns going into the company’s IPO, as mobile has been an area that has bedeviled other Internet companies. Facebook and Google, which initially focused on online ads for personal computers, have more recently had to reshape their massive ad businesses as users spend more time on the Web via smartphones and tablets.
Marketers are well along in their adoption of lead-generation practices, according to a new study by BtoB. Seventy-one percent of respondents said they are at least moderate participants in some form of lead generation, while 47% are “very” or “fully” involved.
However, the study, “2013 Lead Generation: Optimum Techniques for Managing Lead Generation Campaigns,” also found that not all lead-gen practices are working as smoothly as they could be. Fifty-five percent of b2b marketers responding said the effectiveness of their lead-gen efforts was just average. And the means by which marketers gauge success remains relatively unsophisticated—76% of marketers said their prime definition of a lead is a prospect request to be contacted.
This indication of serious interest was much more appreciated as a hot lead than a request for a white paper (43%), attendance at a webinar (35%) or visits to a company’s website (30%), according to BtoB’s study, which was based on an online poll conducted in June and July of 282 b2b marketing professionals. Overall, marketers placed the least value on being followed or “liked” on social media.