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In a world which demands 'more, done better, and faster,' simplicity has taken on the power of a moral imperative.
In America, the average hours worked per week is now 47 hours, that’s nearly a six day work week. As parents, professionals, and members of little used gyms, the admonition to 'Be All You Can Be' is a self-escalating puzzle.
In the context of the more specialized and complex requirements faced in life, making one’s communications simple may be as important as making them polite.
So, simplicity equates to credibility and also the ability to fit with your audience’s over-stuffed lives. To time-strapped consumers, if it’s not simple, it’s not welcome.
Guess what? You’re not in the business you think you’re in.
I don’t mean this like one of those these-are-not-the-droids-you-are-looking-for Jedi mind-tricks but as a statement of fact.
No matter what else you may do, if you rely on digital technology, and who doesn’t, then you are in the software business too.
Is a world without ads possible? We’re already halfway there.
“What if there were no ads?” That was the question content marketers Robert Rose and Joe Pulizzi asked in an episode of their podcast, This Old Marketing.
It sounds like the start of John Lennon’s Imagine, but for marketers. What if there were just no ads?
While the iPhone which provides half of Apple's revenue is its foundation, the iPad is its bellwether for growth.
Gartner has upwardly revised its growth projections for tables to a whopping 54% this year, against an 11% drop in PC sales. This makes it no surprise that Apple has set its course in this direction.
As Willie Sutton answered when he was asked why he robbed banks, the answer is obvious, its where the money is.
But it goes further than retail. The iPad is a gateway to incremental media, software sales and services purchases. There are 170m of them in circulation, and Apple is moving to gain new users and upgrade its installed base.
And along the way gain increased wallet and mindshare while depositioning its rivals.
In the Post-PC era, designing to delight customers is the currency of persistent advantage. This intensifies competition to own user experience and valuable customer relationships through it.
Last week Apple updated Logic Pro X, its high-end audio software aimed at music professionals. A big part of its new coolness is that it comes with a free companion app which allows iPads to be remote input devices to the processor-intensive audio editing program.
This means you can play an instrument or work a mixing board control wirelessly across a studio or a venue, while your Mac runs the full Logic Pro software and processes the incoming signals.
I confess, there are plenty of things that make Twitter's six second video service, Vine seem to be utterly dismissible.
But that just may be its paradoxical strength, after all...
Digital tools now reach across companies (from sales to support) and across the entire customer experience. This span is making running digital channels as silos increasingly costly and difficult to scale.
Organizations that seek to rationalize operations, use data effectively, and personalize smart experiences for clients need alignment around a digital experience plan.
This is the first of a series of posts on why digital experience planning has become a strategic priority of a growing tribe of digital leaders.
Twitter's purchase of social television analytics firm Bluefin Labs, its largest purchase to date, reveals both its interest in connecting the viewers of media, and in gaining some of the revenue currently headed to television advertising.
Though its business model may have seemed quixotic in its early days, Twitter is building a potential case as the network able to reach people based on their most immediate interests.
A quick look at revenue growth over three years shows that companies loved by their clients grew more than twice as fast as Super Bowl advertisers.
The NFL has built one of the smartest businesses in broadcasting. In an otherwise fractured media landscape, its weekly games routinely top viewership ratings. CBS, NBC and Fox all carry its games – showing meaningful brands are more influential than the undifferentiated reach of networks.
But it’s the Super Bowl that is the NFL’s finale. In 1967, a thirty second ad in Super Bowl I sold for $40,000; today that same spot costs $3.7 million.
Forbes points out that this growth record beats the S&P 500 (10.3% to 6.3%), and that it has been more consistent than the rise of stock prices over the same period.
Call it delight, caring, innovation or service, some companies set themselves apart by earning the durable preference of their customers.
If your view is that "life is too short for standard results" then here is what I've learned from business leaders who know how to earn the involvement and loyalty of great customers.
These loved firms grow faster, maintain stronger margins, and navigate downturns better than those firms with customer relationships based on toleration and transaction. And, it turns out, there are patterns to how companies become loved.
A few weeks ago there was a huge buzz about my neighbor and social media hero, Amanda Palmer, raising over a million dollars from fans to promote her new album.
If you're a relationship marketer, can you imagine a greater accomplishment than fans who will bankroll an enterprise they believe in?
A recent Ad Age article proclaimed that freelancers are a happy and well paid lot, and that they're a hot new trend on Madison Avenue.
However, when you scratch the surface of their research, it's clear that permanent freelancing brings as much instability to agencies as those stepping-up for extended temporary work.
A reality that's easy for employed agency execs, and writers, to overlook.