tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/digital-strategy Latest Digital Strategy content from Econsultancy 2018-06-22T12:24:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/70115 2018-06-22T12:24:00+01:00 2018-06-22T12:24:00+01:00 Five reasons US ecommerce won't be dented by the Supreme Court's sales tax ruling Patricio Robles <p>As Reuters <a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-court-taxes/u-s-top-court-lets-states-force-online-retailers-to-collect-sales-tax-idUSKBN1JH23B">explained</a>, "In a 5-4 ruling reviving a South Dakota law challenged by Wayfair Inc, Overstock.com Inc and Newegg Inc, the justices overturned a 1992 high court precedent that had barred states from requiring businesses with no 'physical presence' there, like out-of-state online retailers, to collect sales taxes."</p> <p>The South Dakota law requires out-of-state online retailers to collect sales tax if their sales to South Dakota sales reach $100,000 or they hit 200 separate transactions.</p> <p>The ruling is expected to pave the way for other states to more aggressively pursue sales tax collection from mid-size and large online retailers, but will the ruling actually dent ecommerce in the US? The answer: most likely not.</p> <p>Here are five reasons why.</p> <h3>Online retail is way too convenient</h3> <p>Thanks to the investments online retailers have made in customer experience, as well as services like Amazon Prime, countless consumers have become accustomed to the convenience of being able to shop from a computer or mobile device and having their purchases delivered to their door, in some cases on the very same day, and in many cases, within no more than two days.</p> <p>While this doesn't mean there is no opportunity for brick-and-mortar retailers to compete with online, the convenience factor creates a very high bar that's not easily overcome.</p> <h3>A lot of buyers are already paying sales tax</h3> <p>While there does exist a group of extremely price sensitive shoppers whose purchasing decisions might be altered by sales tax, the reality is that a lot of online shoppers are already paying sales tax.</p> <p>Online retail's 800 pound gorilla, Amazon, for instance, collects sales tax in 47 of the 50 US states. Other major retailers, such as Walmart, similarly collect sales tax on online purchases in many states.</p> <h3>The ruling didn't directly address third-party sellers</h3> <p>Some online shoppers might be surprised to learn that Amazon, Walmart and others charge sales tax in most states because they've made purchases from these retailers for which they paid no tax.</p> <p>The reason: Amazon and other online retailers that operate marketplaces through which third-parties sell to consumers generally don't collect sales tax on behalf of those sellers. Marketplace sales now make up over half of Amazon's sales in terms of units sold, so many customers are unaffected by Amazon's sales tax compliance.</p> <p>The Supreme Court's ruling didn't speak directly to the responsibility of online retailers to collect sales tax for marketplace sales, which means that many online purchases will likely still go untaxed.</p> <p>As Paul Rafelson, a law professor at Pace University, <a href="https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/21/why-amazon-wins-with-supreme-court-sales-tax-ruling.html">told CNBC</a>, "Amazon can hide behind its marketplace to claim tax exemption because it's still going to pretend it's not a retailer — and not responsible for collecting sales taxes."</p> <p>Based on its opinion, it would appear that the Supreme Court would prefer that Congress address this and related issues, which given the gridlock in Washington DC means it could be some time before these issues are actually addressed.</p> <h3>Offline can't beat online when it comes to selection</h3> <p>Sometimes less is more, but when it comes to many retail markets, more is better as far as customers are concerned. </p> <p>Clearly, a physical store can be home to a limited number of SKUs, whereas an online retail website can be home to a virtually unlimited number of SKUs. In other words, online handily beats offline when it comes to selection size. And the gap is only increasing as many brick-and-mortar retailers downsize their physical locations to cut costs.</p> <h3>Brick-and-mortar retail has already been crippled</h3> <p>While there are brick-and-mortar retailers that are successfully transitioning into multi-channel and omnichannel retailers without abandoning all their physical locations, there is no disputing the fact that brick-and-mortar retail has experienced significant decline.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0009/5598/15843941625_fca9d171e3_k-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="353"></p> <p><em>Credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/67408512@N03/">Random Retail via Flickr</a></em></p> <p>The evidence of this is not hard to find. For example, store closings have led to dead malls, particularly when one looks at class B and C malls. As a consequence, even if sales tax led some shoppers to reconsider their online purchases in favor of a brick-and-mortar, their brick-and-mortar options aren't what they were even a few years ago.</p> <p><em><strong>Further reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/70092-how-can-struggling-high-street-retailers-step-up-their-online-strategies/">How can struggling UK retailers step up their online strategies</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/70102 2018-06-19T09:44:02+01:00 2018-06-19T09:44:02+01:00 Unilever gets serious about influencer fraud Patricio Robles <p>The most popular of those celebrities, hatched on social platforms like Instagram and not in Hollywood, have seen their fortunes grow by leaps and bounds as companies have lined up to use their influence to bolster their brands and hawk their wares.</p> <p>But with bigger and bigger budgets has come greater scrutiny and now, the world's second largest advertiser, Unilever, is stepping in to address one of influencer marketing's biggest sore spots: fake followers.</p> <p>Yesterday, Unilever's CMO, Keith Weed, made it official: the company and its brands, which include Axe, Lipton, Popsicle and Slim Fast, will no longer work with influencers who pay for followers. </p> <p>“Trust comes on foot and leaves on horseback, and we could very quickly see the whole influencer space be undermined,” <a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-unilever-media/unilever-takes-stand-against-digital-medias-fake-followers-idUSKBN1JD10M">he told Reuters</a>. “There are lots of great influencers out there, but there are a few bad apples spoiling the barrel and the trouble is, everyone goes down once the trust is undermined.”</p> <p>While the number of fake followers on popular social platforms can only be estimated, and the number obviously varies from influencer to influencer, there is a general consensus that it's a real problem that is only getting bigger. There exists an entire ecosystem of shady outfits hawking followers. Many, especially the ones that offer lots of followers for relatively small amounts of money, rely on networks of bot accounts.</p> <p>For brands, fake followers are a scourge that has the potential to result in significant waste. Influencers typically charge based on the size of their followings, which provides an incentive for ambitious and unscrupulous influencers to try to juice their numbers.</p> <p>Of course, fake followers are all but worthless, so brands that pay influencers with large fake followings are effectively paying for a volume of eyeballs and engagement that they have no potential to achieve.</p> <h3>Challenges abound</h3> <p>According to Weed, Unilever has already minimized its exposure to fake followers by weeding out bad partners, but its announcement of an official 'no fake followers' policy is a wake-up call for other brands that have applied less scrutiny to the influencers and influencer agencies they work with.</p> <p>Of course, dealing with the issue of fake followers will require ongoing vigilance. Vetting an influencer's following isn't a one-and-done proposition. Just because an influencer's followers passed muster a month ago doesn't mean that unsavory activity hasn't occurred since.</p> <p>In addition to the challenge of ongoing monitoring, brands adopting Unilever-like policies will have to grapple with the fact that there's often no way to tell whether or not an influencer paid for fake followers. </p> <p>Fake bot accounts are prevalent on many social platforms and they often follow popular accounts, ostensibly in an effort to look more legitimate, so the fact that an influencer potentially has a large number of fake followers doesn't necessarily mean that the influencer paid for them. There's also the fact that an agency an influencer is represented by could purchase fake followers without the influencer's knowledge and approval.</p> <p>Even more disturbing is the possibility that Unilever-like policies could lead to bad actors attempting to sabotage influencers by purchasing fake followers. Such activity is not without precedent; unlucky advertisers have dealt with PPC click fraud perpetrated by competitors.</p> <p>At the end of the day, it's clear that while Unilever's policy is a step in the right direction, actually stamping out influencer fraud will take a lot more than a 'no fake followers' policy. Brands will need to invest more time to manage their influencer relationships and marketing campaigns. They will need better data and tools. And, perhaps most importantly, they will need greater cooperation from the social platforms that ultimately have the greatest ability to detect and deal with bot accounts.</p> <p><a style="color: #2976b2; text-decoration: none;" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-best-practice-guide/" target="_self"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0009/3234/Social_Media_Best_Practice_Widget__1_.png" alt="social media report banner" width="615" height="243"></a></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/70100 2018-06-18T14:29:27+01:00 2018-06-18T14:29:27+01:00 Venmo doubles down on mobile: Is it a smart move? Patricio Robles <p>That's because last week, Venmo informed its users via email that it's deprecating functionality on its website, starting with the ability to send and request payments. The email stated:</p> <blockquote> <p>Venmo has decided to phase out some of the functionality on the Venmo.com website over the coming months. We are beginning to discontinue the ability to pay and charge someone on the Venmo.com website, and over time, you may see less functionality on the website – this is just the start. We therefore have updated our user agreement to reflect that the use of Venmo on the Venmo.com website may be limited.</p> </blockquote> <p>In a statement to TechCrunch, Venmo further <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/15/venmo-is-discontinuing-web-support-for-payments-and-more/">explained</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>Venmo continuously evaluates our products and services to ensure we are delivering our users the best experience. We have decided to begin to discontinue the ability to pay and charge someone on the Venmo.com website. Most of our users pay and request money using the Venmo app, so we’re focusing our efforts there.</p> </blockquote> <p>Although the usage of the Venmo app might be significantly higher than that of its website, some Venmo users took to social media to voice their displeasure with the decision, with some even going so far as to claim that they would no longer use Venmo as a result of the decision.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">I don't know which <a href="https://twitter.com/MNDarkClouds?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MNDarkClouds</a> decided to use Venmo as the app to collect funds for the Charity Club, but it sucks. I can't pay from the website?!?!? I am required to install an app? And it's owned by PayPal but not tied to my PayPal account? Why is this so stupid???</p> — Dave DuJour (@davedujour) <a href="https://twitter.com/davedujour/status/997480372576440320?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">May 18, 2018</a> </blockquote> <p>While Venmo told TechCrunch that “users can continue to use the mobile app for their pay and charge transactions and can still use the website for cashing out Venmo balances, settings and statements,” its email to users directly hints that more functionality will be deprecated in the future, raising the possibility that users who rely on or prefer using the Venmo website could be further alienated.</p> <p>So what gives? Why is Venmo suddenly making big changes to its service?</p> <h3>The Zelle factor</h3> <p>Venmo's decision to remove website functionality in favor of focusing on its mobile app experience comes at an interesting time. That's because <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69757-big-banks-are-finding-success-with-zelle-but-what-does-it-really-mean">Zelle</a>, big banking's P2P payments app, is growing like a weed. In fact, according to eMarketer, thanks to the fact that the more than 30 banks behind it have so many customers, Zelle will overtake Venmo in users this year. </p> <p>And by 2022, eMarketer expects that Zelle will have a wide lead over Venmo in users, with 56.1m compared to 38.7m, respectively.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0009/5414/venmo-zelle-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="470" height="463"></p> <p>While past statements from Zelle representatives indicate that it isn't trying to compete head-on with Venmo, there is no doubt some overlap between Zelle's user base and Venmo's user base and Venmo should probably be somewhat concerned about Zelle's ability to parlay ubiquity into usage.</p> <p>With that in mind, the question for Venmo is whether it can afford to take away functionality that a minority of its users use without ill-effect.</p> <p>On one hand, it would seem that allowing users to pay via the Venmo website is such a basic piece of functionality that there's really no need to risk removing it. On the other hand, as Venmo looks to solidify its relationship with users and innovate on the functionality and experiences it offers them, being able to focus exclusively on one application – and the one most of its users use – could prove advantageous.</p> <p>Time will ultimately tell whether or not Venmo's decision was a wise one, but already, Zelle has proven that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69457-can-big-banks-catch-up-to-venmo-with-p2p-payments-app-zelle">big banks can catch up to upstarts</a> like Venmo and once they do, those upstarts will have to become a lot more strategic if they don't want to find themselves playing catch-up.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4144 2018-06-11T12:26:00+01:00 2018-06-11T12:26:00+01:00 Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide <p>Part of our <a title="Social Media Best Practice Guide" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-best-practice-guide/">Social Media Best Practice Guide bundle</a>, this report aims to identify <strong>best practice approaches, techniques, measurement considerations, challenges and opportunities for creating your social media strategy.</strong></p> <p>It contains actionable, real-world insight with detailed explanations to help you start and improve your performance on social media platforms.</p> <p>Throughout the report, we bring you examples of how companies are using social media in different ways, as well as insights from companies interviewed specifically for this guide.</p> <p>For more details on the main features of social media platforms and the most pressing considerations for marketers looking to generate the most value from social media, read the complementary <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-platforms-overview">Social Media Platforms Overview</a> and the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/paid-social-media-advertisinghttps://econsultancy.com/reports/paid-social-media-advertising">Paid Social Media Advertising</a> report.</p> <h2>Methodology</h2> <p>The methodology involved two main phases:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Phase 1:</strong> Desk research to identify relevant issues, examples and models.</li> <li> <strong>Phase 2:</strong> A series of in-depth interviews with a range of senior digital and non-digital marketers, communications leads and social media strategists.</li> </ul> <h2>Lead author</h2> <p>The lead author for our social media best practice guides is <strong>Michelle Goodall</strong>, an experienced consultant. She has more than 17 years’ B2C and B2B experience client and agency-side, providing digital transformation and social media strategy advice and support.</p> <p>She has worked with a wide range of clients, including London2012, BBC, Direct Line Group, Multiple Sclerosis Society, Barclays Bank, Coca Cola, Unilever, US Embassy, and many others.</p> <p>Michelle is a trainer and consultant for Econsultancy and can generally be found curating things that smart people write / make / do and getting to grips with Peach and other peripheral / transformative / game-changing technologies for her clients.</p> <h2>Contributors</h2> <p>The author and Econsultancy wish to extend sincere thanks to the following respected professionals who have contributed to the report:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Richard Bagnall</strong> – CEO, PRIME Research UK &amp; SVP PRIME Research Europe</li> <li> <strong>Alison Traboulsi</strong> - Social Media Editor, Direct Line Group</li> <li> <strong>Kerry Taylor</strong> – EVP, MTV International. Chief Marketing Officer, Viacom UK at Viacom </li> <li> <strong>Guy Stephens</strong> – Social Customer Care Consultant, IBM</li> <li> <strong>Stephen Waddington</strong> – Partner and Chief Engagement Officer, Ketchum</li> <li> <strong>Ros Lawler</strong> – Digital Director, Tate</li> <li> <strong>Mark Frankel</strong> – Social Media Editor, BBC News</li> <li> <strong>Helen Wood</strong> – Planning Director, H&amp;K Strategies</li> <li> <strong>Sophie Mindell </strong>– Content &amp; Publishing Strategist, H&amp;K Strategies</li> <li> <strong>Matt Owen</strong> – Founder, Atomise Marketing</li> <li> <strong>Alison Spray</strong> – Director of Data and Insights, H&amp;K Strategies (AMEC Board Member)</li> <li> <strong>Jeff Semones</strong> – Managing Partner, Head of Social Media, MediaCom</li> </ul> <p><strong>Stay tuned - Econsultuancy will host a Social Media webinar, further exploring the most important issues and takeaways in this report on 20th September 2018.  </strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4147 2018-06-11T12:00:00+01:00 2018-06-11T12:00:00+01:00 Social Media Bundle <p>According to research by GlobalWebindex, <strong>93% of internet users have at least one social media account</strong>. With social media touching so many areas of an organisation, the process of getting social media right has never been more important.</p> <p>This <strong>Social Media Best Practice Guide</strong> contains actionable, real-world insight with detailed explanations to help you start and improve your performance on social media platforms.</p> <p>In order to enable you to quickly access the information you need to start improving your marketing efforts, the guide is available as two individual reports:</p> <h3><strong>1. <a title="Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-strategy-best-practice-guide/">Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide</a></strong></h3> <p>The aim of this research is to identify <strong>best practice approaches, techniques, measurement considerations, challenges and opportunities for creating your social media strategy.</strong></p> <p>As social media platforms continue to evolve at a rapid rate we also cover some of the exciting developments taking place in social media.</p> <h3><strong>2. <a title="Social Media Platforms Overview" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-platforms-overview/">Social Media Platforms Overview</a></strong></h3> <p><strong>We've updated our social media platforms overview guide in 2018</strong> to account for the rapid developments occurring in this space. This report's purpose is to provide <strong>a snapshot of the major social media platforms and the most pressing considerations for marketers looking to generate the most value from social media</strong>.</p> <p>It provides a summary of the main features of these platforms, and outlines some of the options available to marketers when developing a paid, owned and earned strategic approach to social media marketing and communications.</p> <p>From Snapchat Lenses and Geofilters and Facebook's latest innovations to Live Video, Augmented Reality and Chatbots, our 2018 edition will ensure that you're up to date with the latest platform trends.</p> <p>Throughout both reports, we bring you <strong>examples of how companies are using social media in different ways, as well as insights from companies interviewed</strong> specifically for these guides.</p> <h2>Methodology</h2> <p>The methodology involved two main phases:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Phase 1:</strong> Desk research to identify relevant issues, examples and models.</li> <li> <strong>Phase 2:</strong> A series of in-depth interviews with a range of senior digital and non-digital marketers, communications leads and social media strategists. </li> </ul> <h2>Lead author</h2> <p>The lead author for our social media best practice guides is <strong>Michelle Goodall</strong>, an experienced consultant. She has more than 17 years’ B2C and B2B experience client and agency-side, providing digital transformation and social media strategy advice and support.</p> <p>She has worked with a wide range of clients, including London2012, BBC, Direct Line Group, Multiple Sclerosis Society, Barclays Bank, Coca Cola, Unilever, US Embassy, and many others.</p> <p>Michelle is a trainer and consultant for Econsultancy and can generally be found curating things that smart people write / make / do and getting to grips with Peach and other peripheral / transformative / game-changing technologies for her clients.</p> <p><strong>Stay tuned - Econsultuancy will host a Social Media webinar, further exploring the most important issues and takeaways in these reports on 20th September 2018.  </strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4812 2018-06-06T10:00:00+01:00 2018-06-06T10:00:00+01:00 Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2018 Digital Trends in Financial Services <p>The <strong>2018 Digital Trends in Financial Services </strong>report is a barometer of the extent to which financial services and insurance (FSI) organisations are embracing digital technology, focusing their strategies and prioritising resources for the year ahead and beyond.</p> <p>The report is based on a sample of almost 700 senior industry leaders (manager level or above) who were among around 13,000 digital professionals taking part in the annual Digital Trends survey.</p> <h3>The following sections are featured in the report:</h3> <ul> <li>The CX imperative: meeting the fintech challenge</li> <li>Data, personalisation and AI</li> <li>Capabilities, skills and budgets</li> <li>Actionable tips to help future-proof your FSI business</li> </ul> <h3>Findings include:</h3> <ul> <li> <strong>FSI companies maintain focus on customer experience (CX) </strong><strong>and the customer journey. </strong>More than a quarter (28%) of FSI respondents rank optimising the CX as the ‘single most exciting opportunity’ in 2018, compared to 18% of their peers across all other sectors. They are also significantly more likely than their peers to regard customer journey optimisation as ‘very important’ over the next few years (81% for FSI vs. 69% for other sectors).</li> </ul> <ul> <li> <strong>Organisations in this sector are neglecting content as a key requirement in the recipe for creating compelling experiences.</strong> FSI companies are less inclined than their peers in other sectors to cite the creation of compelling content for digital experiences as the top opportunity for the year ahead (7% vs. 15%). Content marketing, content management, and creation and delivery of video content are also relatively off-radar as priorities for FSI companies, when compared with those outside of the industry.</li> </ul> <ul> <li><strong>FSI industry seeks to master data-driven marketing, personalisation and AI.</strong></li> <ul> <li>Data-driven marketing is regarded as the second most exciting opportunity for 2018, registering a percentage which is higher than the equivalent figure for respondents in other sectors (23% vs. 15%).</li> <li>More than a third (37%) of respondents in this sector describe targeting and personalisation as a top-three priority for 2018, compared to less than a quarter (23%) of respondents across all sectors.</li> <li>The majority (61%) of companies surveyed are either using artificial intelligence (AI) already, or planning to do so within the next 12 months, a percentage that puts this sector ahead of others (44%).</li> </ul> </ul> <ul> <li> <strong>Technology is a barrier to digital progress.</strong> The proportion of FSI companies that have implemented a highly integrated, cloud-based technology stack is in single figures (7%). Wealth and asset management providers are particularly challenged in respect of technology, with 61% rating technology as ‘difficult to master’.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Econsultancy's Digital Intelligence Briefings, sponsored by <a title="Adobe" href="http://www.adobe.com/marketing-cloud.html">Adobe</a>, look at some of the most important trends affecting the marketing landscape. </strong><strong>You can access the other reports in this series <a title="Econsultancy / Adobe Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefings" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/quarterly-digital-intelligence-briefing">here</a>.</strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4809 2018-06-05T11:25:00+01:00 2018-06-05T11:25:00+01:00 Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2018 Digital Trends for Creative and Design Leaders <p>The <strong>2018 Digital Trends for Creative and Design Leaders </strong>report explores the priorities, opportunities and challenges ahead through the lens of creative and design professionals.</p> <p>For the first time our annual survey of digital professionals had specific questions for this cohort of respondents, to help us understand in more detail their opportunities and pain points.</p> <p>The research, conducted by Econsultancy in partnership with <a title="Adobe" href="http://www.adobe.com/marketing-cloud.html">Adobe</a>, is based on a sample of over 2,600 creative and design respondents who were among around 13,000 digital professionals taking part in the eighth annual Digital Trends survey.</p> <h3>The following sections are featured in the report:</h3> <ul> <li>Design-driven companies are outperforming competitors</li> <li>Top priorities and opportunities</li> <li>Challenges</li> <li>Actionable tips to help future-proof your creative and design capabilities</li> </ul> <h3>Findings include:</h3> <ul> <li> <strong>Design-driven companies are outperforming their peers. </strong>More than a quarter (26%) of senior creative and design professionals surveyed for this report regard their organisations as ‘definitely’ being design-driven, while a further 41% say this is ‘somewhat’ the case. Design-driven companies are almost twice as likely as other companies to be significantly outperforming their competitors (32% vs. 17%).</li> <li> <strong>Real-time personalisation is seen as the most exciting </strong><strong>opportunity. </strong>The most exciting opportunity for creative and design leaders in the medium term is delivering personalised experiences in real time, voted for by 31% of client-side and 39% of agency respondents.</li> <li> <strong>Poor processes and workflows are slowing down </strong><strong>creative and design leaders. </strong>Design-driven companies are 79% more likely than their peers to have the processes and collaborative workflows to achieve a design advantage (68% vs. 38%). Four in ten (40%) client-side creative and design leaders report that outdated workflows are a major internal barrier.</li> <li> <strong>Companies are reaping the benefits of AI. </strong>When asked what their organisations are using AI for, the most likely application is analysis of data, cited by 54% of client-side and 45% of agency respondents. For most other use cases, agency respondents are more likely than their client-side counterparts to indicate usage of AI, including for email marketing, programmatic advertising, on-site personalisation, content creation and automated campaigns.</li> <li> <strong>Creative and design talent is in short supply.</strong> More than a third (36%) of in-house practitioners cite access to creative talent as a key external challenge, while a similar percentage (37%) cite recruitment and retention of the right people with the right skills as a major internal barrier.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Econsultancy's Digital Intelligence Briefings, sponsored by <a title="Adobe" href="http://www.adobe.com/marketing-cloud.html">Adobe</a>, look at some of the most important trends affecting the marketing landscape. </strong><strong>You can access the other reports in this series <a title="Econsultancy / Adobe Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefings" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/quarterly-digital-intelligence-briefing">here</a>.</strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4148 2018-06-01T12:45:00+01:00 2018-06-01T12:45:00+01:00 Social Media Platforms Overview <p>Part of our <a title="Social Media Best Practice Guide" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-best-practice-guide/">Social Media Best Practice Guide bundle</a>,<strong> we've updated and refreshed this report for 2018</strong> to reflect on the latest trends and to provide <strong>a snapshot of the major social media platforms and the most pressing considerations for marketers looking to generate the most value from social media</strong>, as well as what to consider when making the business case for social media platforms.</p> <p>The report provides a summary of the main features of social media platforms, and outlines some of the options available to marketers when developing a paid, owned and earned strategic approach to social media marketing and communications.</p> <p>Throughout the report, we bring you <strong>examples of how companies are using social media in different ways, as well as insights from companies interviewed</strong> specifically for this guide.</p> <p>For more details on <strong>best practice approaches, techniques, challenges and opportunities for creating your social media strategy</strong>, read the complementary <strong><a title="Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-strategy-best-practice-guide/">Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide</a></strong>.</p> <h2>Methodology</h2> <p>The methodology involved two main phases:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Phase 1:</strong> Desk research to identify relevant issues, examples and models.</li> <li> <strong>Phase 2:</strong> A series of in-depth interviews with a range of senior digital and non-digital marketers, communications leads and social media strategists. </li> </ul> <h2>Lead author</h2> <p>The lead author for our social media best practice guides is <strong>Michelle Goodall</strong>, an experienced consultant. She has more than 17 years’ B2C and B2B experience client and agency-side, providing digital transformation and social media strategy advice and support.</p> <p>She has worked with a wide range of clients, including London2012, BBC, Direct Line Group, Multiple Sclerosis Society, Barclays Bank, Coca Cola, Unilever, US Embassy, and many others.</p> <p>Michelle is a trainer and consultant for Econsultancy and can generally be found curating things that smart people write / make / do and getting to grips with Peach and other peripheral / transformative / game-changing technologies for her clients.</p> <h2>Contributors</h2> <p>The author and Econsultancy wish to extend sincere thanks to the following respected professionals who have contributed to the report:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Kerry Taylor</strong> – EVP, MTV International &amp; Chief Marketing Officer, Viacom UK at Viacom</li> <li> <strong>Mark Frankel</strong> – Social Media Editor, BBC News</li> <li> <strong>Will McInnes</strong> - Chief Marketing Officer, Brandwatch</li> <li> <strong>Stephen Waddington</strong> – Chief Engagement Officer, Ketchum</li> <li> <strong>Georgina Forster</strong> – Managing Director, Mirum, San Diego</li> <li> <strong>Helen Wood</strong> – Planning Director, H&amp;K Strategies</li> <li> <strong>Sophie Mindell and Micaela Maciel</strong> – Content &amp; Publishing Strategists, H&amp;K Strategies</li> <li> <strong>Alison Traboulsi</strong> – Social Media Editor, Direct Line Group</li> <li> <strong>Matt Owen</strong> – Founder, Atomise Marketing</li> <li> <strong>Rafi Nizam</strong>, VP Creative, NBC Universal International</li> <li> <strong>Jeff Semones</strong>, Managing Partner, Head of Social Media, MediaCom</li> </ul> <p><strong>Stay tuned - Econsultuancy will host a Social Media webinar, further exploring the most important issues and takeaways in this report on 20th September 2018.  </strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/70049 2018-05-29T15:09:57+01:00 2018-05-29T15:09:57+01:00 The reasons a retailer is behind the most successful mobile payments solution Patricio Robles <p>The retailer is Starbucks, an <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/8435-starbucks-sees-26m-transactions-made-via-mobile">early entrant into the space</a>, that, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/05/22/starbuckss-mobile-payment-service-is-slightly-outpacing-apples/">according to</a> eMarketer, will have 23.4m people aged 14 years and older use its app to make a point-of-sale purchase at least once every six months.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0009/4747/starbucks-mobile-emarketer-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="255"></p> <p>Here's a look at the reasons why Starbucks has been so successful with mobile payments.</p> <h3>There's a compelling use case based on high frequency</h3> <p>Starbucks is a frequent stop for millions upon millions of individuals. Some of the company's customers even visit daily. Because so many people visit Starbucks on a regular basis, there are lots of people who have a good reason to install and use the app.</p> <h3>Acceptance is universal</h3> <p>While acceptance of the Three Pays is growing, acceptance is not ubiquitous and that presents a usage challenge. The friction associated with credit and debit card payments is decreasing and thus, standalone mobile payments services that aren't universally accepted are arguably decreasingly appealing.</p> <p>Contrast this with Starbucks. Virtually every Starbucks customer knows that the company's app can be used to pay for orders at any Starbucks location. Coupled with the aforementioned frequency at which a large contingent of the company's customers make purchases, the known ability to use the app at every Starbucks location is no doubt a significant driver of app usage.</p> <h3>The app allows for mobile ordering</h3> <p>Unlike the Three Pays, the Starbucks app isn't just about payments. Notably, Starbucks customers can place orders – and pay for them of course – through the app. This gives them the ability to order ahead and avoid lines, which in and of itself is a compelling value proposition.</p> <h3>The Starbucks loyalty scheme requires payment by app</h3> <p>Perhaps the most compelling reason the Starbucks app is beating out dedicated mobile payment apps is that to earn rewards under the company's Starbucks Rewards loyalty scheme, patrons must pay for their purchases through the Starbucks app. </p> <p>Under the loyalty scheme, customers earn points, dubbed stars, that they can exchange for free drinks and food. Starbucks gamifies the loyalty scheme using a variety of techniques, including Double Star Days on which, as the name suggests, customers earn double the stars they would normally earn.</p> <h3>What other retailers can learn from Starbucks</h3> <p>Perhaps encouraged by Starbucks' success with mobile payments, other retailers <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69641-target-is-the-latest-retailer-to-launch-a-mobile-wallet-will-it-work">like Target</a> have launched mobile payments offerings of their own. While few if any will achieve Starbucks-like adoption, there is the potential for large retailers to drive adoption of such offerings among their most loyal customers.</p> <p>To do this, however, they will need to look at the reasons Starbucks has succeeded, looking for both opportunity and shortcoming. For example, most retailers will not have a high frequency use case, but they could look to Starbucks' savvy integration of its loyalty scheme into its app and use that as inspiration for their mobile payment offerings.</p> <p><em><strong>Further reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/blog/70030-why-apathy-towards-apps-is-rising-and-how-to-combat-it">Why apathy towards apps is rising (and how to combat it)</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4807 2018-05-24T11:05:00+01:00 2018-05-24T11:05:00+01:00 Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2018 Digital Trends in Retail <p>The <strong>2018 Digital Trends in Retail</strong> report explores the effects of digital disruption in the sector, providing guidance to organisations that want to stay ahead of the curve.</p> <p>It highlights the key digital trends, challenges and opportunities which retailers need to be aware of during 2018, covering topics ranging from customer experience and mobile to data-driven marketing and artificial intelligence.</p> <p>The research, conducted by Econsultancy in partnership with <a title="Adobe" href="http://www.adobe.com/marketing-cloud.html">Adobe</a>, is based on a sample of almost 600 retail respondents who were among around 13,000 digital professionals taking part in the eighth annual Digital Trends survey.</p> <h3>The following sections are featured in the report:</h3> <ul> <li>Retailers focus on omnichannel</li> <li>The use of data to enhance CX</li> <li>Investment is the recipe for retail success</li> <li>Actionable tips to help future-proof your retail business</li> </ul> <h3>Findings include:</h3> <ul> <li> <strong>Retailers prioritise omnichannel approach to help them differentiate through customer experience.</strong> Content and experience management and omnichannel marketing are the top priorities for retailers in 2018. More than half of respondents indicate that each of these areas is a top-three priority and, in the case of omnichannel marketing, a quarter (25%) of all retailers surveyed make this their number one priority for the year ahead.</li> <li> <strong>Companies recognise the need to master data capabilities in order to adopt a more personalised and scalable approach to marketing.</strong> While, in hindsight, only 9% of retailers saw data-driven marketing as the most exciting opportunity for 2017, more than double that percentage (19%) regard it as the foremost opportunity for the year ahead.</li> <li> <strong>Focus on real-time personalisation to enhance the customer experience.</strong> Looking ahead three years, the most exciting prospect for retailers is delivering personalised experiences in real time (cited by 37% of respondents).</li> <li> <strong>Digital marketing budgets are on the increase, but investment in digital skills and investment is being neglected.</strong> Nearly three-quarters (72%) of respondents plan to increase digital marketing spending during 2018, a significantly higher percentage than the average across all sectors. As reported in the main <a title="Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2018 Digital Trends" href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/digital-intelligence-briefing-2018-digital-trends">2018 Digital Trends report</a>, around two-thirds (67%) of all companies surveyed are planning to boost their digital marketing budgets this year.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Econsultancy's Digital Intelligence Briefings, sponsored by <a title="Adobe" href="http://www.adobe.com/marketing-cloud.html">Adobe</a>, look at some of the most important trends affecting the marketing landscape. </strong><strong>You can access the other reports in this series <a title="Econsultancy / Adobe Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefings" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/quarterly-digital-intelligence-briefing">here</a>.</strong></p>