Love for debate and disagreement could be described as one of the factors contributing to the success of social media.
Looking to harness this love for reasoned discussion, Bothsider is a nascent network that allows users to ask questions, agree or disagree with other users and explain why.
Starting a social network and getting ‘traction’ must be difficult with so many players having come and gone, and big hitters still dominating audiences.
So I caught up with Mark Gavagan, Founder, to ask him a few questions.
The box, the tube, the telly, the television. Are any of us sure the set is set to evolve?
The television is one of those unifying pleasures and most people are already happy with the experience of watching it.
Additionally, advertisers still think of television as the big hitting ad medium, rightly or wrongly.
So, if it’s not broken, why fix it? Or is that the kind of reasoning that stymies innovation?
I think it’s fairly obvious that although we can choose to think of television as a constant, it has changed significantly since it went digital. FreeView in the UK, TiVo, Sky+, on-demand services like iPlayer and Netflix, Apple TV and Chromecast, the impact of Twitter and social TV, Roku, there have been many developments.
But what’s next? Here I’ve tried to sum up some of the innovations for advertisers and viewers I’ve seen in the last few months. See what you think..
I am subtitling this post, ‘products become services, services become transparent’.
Econsultancy researcher Andrew Warren-Payne sent me a list of internet of things developments, products that have emerged over the past year and are now available.
He knows I’m interested in internet enabled things as I’ve written a few posts before about what to expect and about why everyone is so fascinated by the IoT.
I’ve tried to keep the discussion rooted to what marketers need to know about IoT. It’s easy to get carried away talking about fridges that know when you’ve run out of milk but realistically there’s no demand for that. It won’t be happening any time soon.
But what will be happening is the gradual transition from one-off purchases where the customer is never to be seen again. This will transition to services, where a customer’s purchase ‘talks’ to the store or manufacturer and a relationship is established throughout the product lifecycle.
Whether it be refills, repairs or upgrades, the seller can keep in touch to potentially make you a more loyal and valuable customer.
Additionally, customers will be able to demand accuracy and transparency from many service providers, as internet enabled devices afford greater data analysis, or life-logging. Cost-saving could be a major benefit, for consumers and suppliers.
So what are these emerging products Andrew has spotted?
iWonder is the evocative name for the BBC’s new interactive guides. The name conjures childlike enquiry (I wonder!), ‘90s crisps (Golden Wonder) and fits nicely with the Beeb’s and Apple’s use of the stunted ‘iProductname’ format.
The guides are the BBC’s new content format, described as 'sit forward', allowing the user to learn by doing.
They organise video and audio, infographics, text and activities into stories.
I’ve been having a play with the guides and given some brief thoughts below. Do go and check them out, they’re a powerful tool for schoolchildren or older autodidacts.
We are regularly asked for more B2B examples of great marketing campaigns.
B2B is one of the categories in the annual Digitals awards handed out by Econsultancy. So, I thought I'd revisit the spring 2013 shortlist and pick out some B2B nominees that haven't made it on to the blog yet.
Here are three campaigns that are unique, for one reason or another. Perhaps a unique client, idea or business gain.
Let me know what you think, or leave your own examples in the comments.
Ordering online from Dr Martens is enjoyable. There are lots of shoes and boots that I want in my life, such as the Pendleton pictured here.
But Dr Martens doesn’t accept in-store returns.
This is something that, with the advent of multichannel retail, consumers have come to expect. I wonder how this is affecting buyers and business?
Google helps us all market our services. That statement can start a healthy debate amongst many in the media, but I think I'll stick with it.
Of course, Google has to market itself, too.
Even the biggest and most successful companies must market themselves in some channels. Apple, for example, may shun social media, but it's all over the television and out-of-home and has a distinctive presence on many high streets.
So, I thought I'd round up some examples of Google's marketing that have stuck in my mind and continue to leave me mindful of Google's all-conquering innovation.
Hope you enjoy!
We are all exposed to display and video advertising and we all have a view on its efficacy.
In this post I’m going to take a beginner's look at measurement in display and video advertising and ask if advertisers are finally getting a good (read ‘transparent’) deal.
How is improved measurement across display advertising changing the nature of the web? Will it start to feel lighter on ads as advertisers demand their ads are not just served but viewed by a human being?
What are the standards for viewability and if the networks are adopting them, is this the death of the impression?
When a good idea comes along in retail and digital there are soon many, many start-ups getting in on the action.
Take loyalty apps for example. Loyalty is a big beast. Many types of company may consider it part of their remit, from digital payment solutions, to social-style check-ins, to group buying sites, or indeed a retailer’s own app.
I’ve previously looked at the state of apps in retail and found that using loyalty schemes is pretty much the major rationale for customers using a retail app.
Whether customers will settle on retailers’ own apps or on a generic loyalty scheme provider (perhaps lumped with payment) remains to be seen.
But of those tens of consolidated loyalty apps, which are the best? Here’s the list of five I think are most interesting. Whether mobile wallets such as PayPal and Google Wallet will buy them up remains to be seen but the space seems set to get richer before it gets poorer.
Vistaprint has an interesting order and checkout process. There is lots of cross-sell and a decent amount of persuasion tactics used.
A few years ago, the website was all sorts of wrong, as Graham Charlton detailed, beaten only by GoDaddy.
Things have moved on and I must say that I don’t think it’s too complicated any more. There are a number of steps to the order process and to the checkout process but that was to be expected when designing a customised t-shirt (my chosen product).
Cross-sell and upsell is now presented on pages where I already feel assured the design process is going well.
Mainly there was a lot of clear information and some fairly persuasive copy and design techniques which I think has been judged correctly.
However, the company must be careful to keep cross-sell relevant. After being offered similar products, stationery and the like, I was then offered website builds and marketing services. This felt wrong and made me think the process might become more tiresome. If I was busier, I could have abandoned at this point.
See what you think of each stage of the order process..