At this year's Mobile World Congress, there were many dazzling new gadgets, engaging talks, and more innovation than should be legal in one location. Marketers could also glean several insights about the future.
The biggest takeaway was that smartphones are now a utility (and a given) much like a television and computer. They aren't the innovative new platform, they're simply the platform.
If you aren't marketing to smartphones users, you aren't marketing at all. And what's growing in popularity among smartphone users right now is virtual reality.
With campaigns aimed at making virtual reality accessible to anyone (such as the recent Coca-Cola packaging that could be folded into a VR viewer), global companies are pushing to make virtual reality a part of everyday life.
Facebook's multiple appearances on different stages throughout the event drove the message home that marketers who don't get on board will soon be left in the dust.
Is 2016 the year app fatigue will reach its tipping point? What should CIOs do to adapt to the changing needs of their employees? What will come of the duel between Google and Microsoft, and what implications will it have for future offerings? Can IT decision-makers and information workers reap the benefits with increasingly competitive prices, licensing structures and enhanced product features, innovations and ecosystems? "The way work gets done will continue to shift in 2016," said Mark Mader, CEO of collaboration work management company Smartsheet. "From the transition of bring your own app (BYOA) to bring your own platform (BYOP), to the impact end-user-introduced and managed solutions will have on employee engagement and satisfaction, the agility and flexibility of CIOs to keep up with the changing demands of workers will be pivotal," he said. Mader addresses these topics in his predictions for 2016, which enterprise IT executives and CIOs should watch closely.
Don’t subscribe to the mantra of embracing risk; rather, avoid or mitigate it. Just because your company is successful doesn’t mean you have a license to take unnecessary risks. Risk-taking is overrated and costly. Granted, every business decision, in essence, comes with some level of risk. The good news? Watching this process unfold from your remote location requires more thorough, in-depth explanation and buy-in. Stakeholders should understand (and agree) on every part of the equation: the upside, the downside, and the probability of each outcome. In terms of evaluating choice, there’s no getting around this process. And once you’ve established how the entire scope, value add, and ROI projections of a decision are transparently communicated, you’ll find the upshot is more effective business practices and organizational synergy.
Business and tech executives said the swift pace of business and tech changes will only continue to increase for the foreseeable future—and that their organization responds too slowly to these shifts, according to a recently released survey from CEB. The resulting report, titled "Executive Guidance for 2016: Accelerating Corporate Clock Speed," indicates that there's plenty of blame to go around for these delays, as "handoff breakdowns" occur within IT, business, finance, legal and outside vendors and third parties. Such snags need to be overcome, lest companies fall behind in entering new markets, keeping up with new competitors and addressing regulatory requirements. "Enterprises must move faster to stay competitive and to manage emerging risks, and technology is increasingly the rate-determining factor,'' according to the report. "To ensure that technology clock speed accelerates rather than inhibits corporate speed, business leaders must create faster, more streamlined handoffs between all the groups involved in delivering new technologies. They need to streamline processes and methodologies so that most technologies are fast-tracked while the few that are risky or expensive get the scrutiny they deserve … These actions cannot be left to the CIO or to technology vendors and consultants. All members of the leadership team must recognize how their decisions and demands influence speed." More than 3,260 global executives took part in the research. The report includes additional research from MIT Sloan Management Review and other publications and organizations, and we've included some of those findings here.
To improve CX, companies must develop an understanding of the fractured, real-time customer journeys that Gen C consumers undergo to foster personal and shareable experiences. However, companies have relied on the traditional funnel as a starting point for improving customer experiences. Over the years, businesses have assumed that consumers take a linear path of awareness, interest, desire and, ultimately, action. But mobile changed the customer journey and research shows that the traditional funnel is dangerously outdated. In my research at Altimeter Group, now part of the Prophet company, I learned that the customer journey for connected customers is far more dynamic than most businesses realize. It’s rife with new patterns, expectations, resources of information, forms of media and screens, which is rendering the sales funnel frustrating at best. In fact, many journeys, even if modernized, compromise expectations and force connected customers back in time.
Critical questions for the board and the C-suite The evolving threat landscape means organizations today must worry about far more than fraud and theft. As attackers become highly organized and also focus their attention on disrupting services, destroying your data, and holding your systems to ransom, the risk challenges grow more complex—with regulatory fines, legal damages, loss of trust, and reputation damage becoming part of the equation.
Some people seem to think that Knowledge Management is dying or has died but it hasn't - it is alive and well. One of the reasons for this misconception is that so much that falls in the realm of Knowledge Management masquerades in another form or under another name.
Humble Inquiry - a term invented by Edgar Schein is one such example.
Edgar has written a book on the subject Humble Inquiry: The Gentle Art of Asking Instead of Telling and you will find a substantial excerpt of it online.
Quite simply, in Edgar's words, "Humble Inquiry is asking the question to which you already don't know the answer, bolstered by an attitude of inquiry, an attitude of interest in the other person, a curiosity."
He goes on to say that "And the importance of that very curiosity, that interest in the other person, is precisely why Humble Inquiry is the first and most important step in building any kind of relationship, whether you are just making a new friendship or wooing a girl or trying to talk to a team-mate on a more personal basis. It should usually almost always start with some form of Humble Inquiry."
Watch this video, where Edgar explains what it is all about, and notice this is not just at the heart of KM but about face-to-face conversation and relationship building - something that Conversational Leadership is all about too :-)
Ask Meaningful Questions Asking meaningful questions is an art. Your question becomes the canvas and the people around you become the artists. They fill in the blank white space. They create the perspectives, lines, shadows and coloring.
In meaningful questioning, the others you involve become the artists. Not you! You give that up. You provide the canvas for their thought to be expressed.
“The uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions.”
Asking enables. Telling weakens. Asking draws out. Telling fills in.
“It’s not that they see the solution. They can’t see the problem.”
In the act of asking meaningful questions, we step back so others can step up and think things through for themselves.
The art of questioning enables dynamic and critical think-through. Finding relevant questions uncovers and reveals richer, more relevant answers.
How Do You Define Success? Implementing a new program or restarting a program that falls short of goals requires leadership dedicated to the task at hand. Having a well thought-out, planned approach that aligns everyone involved in the process greatly increases the likelihood that new capabilities will be successful.
Here’s an easy survey to see if you’ve achieved success: Ask people how they know if they are successful in their role … and see if they mention the new metrics. If you don’t hear them mentioned, the capability may not stick around for the long-haul.
I define success as everyone doing their job and the business meeting its outcomes six months after implementation. You need time to have new capabilities embedded into the fabric of the company.
The most rapidly evolving kinds of "collective intelligence"--a phenomenon where a shared or group intelligence emerges from the collaboration and/or competition of many individuals--are those enabled by the Internet. Wikipedia and YouTube are the best-known examples of collective intelligence. Similarly, InnoCentive is a web community that outsources companies' research problems and invites answers from anyone who wants to contribute, awarding a handful to cash prizes to the best of the bunch. And at MIT, the Climate CoLab uses crowdsourcing to harness the collective intelligence of thousands of people all over the world in an attempt to solve the problems of climate change.These design patterns presented in technology-enabled collective intelligence is also represented more generally in the shift from traditional hierarchies to flatter organizational structures. For years, pockets of the U.S. military have been slowly taking decisions out of the hands of high-ranking commanders and entrusting them to teams of soldiers, who are told what problems to solve but not how to solve them. And last year, Zappos adopted a controversial flat organizational structure referred to as "holacracy." By order of CEO Tony Hsieh, the company abolished managers, eliminated job titles, denounced its organizational hierarchy and instead adopted a radical new system of self-governance. Automattic, the firm behind WordPress, only employs a couple hundred people, who all work remotely, with a highly autonomous flat management structure.
New platforms will emerge: One of the biggest challenges marketers face is finding influencers within their industry. New platforms for finding influencers and organizing lists will emerge; for example, services like BuzzStream and Buzzsumo.
2.It will become more costly: Influencer marketing will continue to grow, meaning that influencers will become more selective in what companies they choose to work with and increase their costs to maintain their earnings. Be prepared to pay top dollar for top influencers within your industry.
3.Engagement will become key: In the past, it was all about working with influencers who had the furthest reach (i.e. most followers). Today, however, it’s more about engagement. Key metrics that will become important include customer acquisition, website visits and social media shares.
Build trust I listen as much, if not more, than I talk. Your people’s insights are valuable, and their concerns show where motivation is most needed. By paying attention to the way I communicate, I establish credibility with my colleagues so that they hear, accept, and support our company’s shared vision. Essentially, I’m building trust. With trust, the stories I tell of how we’ve succeeded in the past and how much we’ve accomplished resonate. They stand as reminders and provide proof of what’s possible. Then, when it’s time for a pep talk, I’ve got history on my side. My ideas aren’t just pie in the sky. What I describe is truly what we are capable of achieving, and it reinforces my staff that we are the best at what we do.
Executive Directors like my client are afraid of two key things:
The board will micromanage the process and the numbers. They’ll walk among the trees and forget they are supposed to be forest people. The board will believe the revenue numbers are too aggressive or too conservative and never once mention its own responsibility in where those numbers will wind up. So the way it ends up working most of the time is this:
The staff has some tough conversations. They present a neat and tidy budget to the Finance Committee (you do have one, don’t you?) The Finance Committee asks a few good questions, typically about the revenue assumptions. The program side asks a question or two – cost of benefits, or sometimes the totally dreaded questions about whether someone is overpaid. Guess what? This isn’t how it should look at all. What should budgeting for nonprofits look like? I’ll tell you.
Thanks to rapid technological shifts and market changes, their job roles are constantly evolving, and they place more value on mission-supporting results rather than simply "clocking in" from 9 to 5. Also, many of these individuals believe that an ideal work space doesn't exist in a traditional office. Who are we describing? Knowledge workers, the vast majority of whom are seeking informal working environments that are less "controlling," according to a recent survey from Unify. The resulting report, "The Way We Work," defines knowledge workers as people who "think for a living" and engage with technology day-to-day. Most indicate that they're working as part of a virtual team more than ever. To stay connected, they depend on a mix of traditional technology tools (such as email) and newer cloud-based, on-demand solutions. These tools enable the workers to think more creatively and make quicker decisions. "Work is so much more complicated today than just the hours put in during any given day," writes Jon Pritchard, CEO at Unify, in the report's introduction. "In the average office, knowledge workers … have to contend with generational gaps, digital transformations, the on-demand economy, the fast evolving nature of work, frustrating technology and the growing realization that many of their jobs won't be in existence in the future. … As business leaders, we need to start shaping our businesses, our office spaces and the communications tools within them to suit the modern knowledge worker—or [we] stand a real risk of losing our top talent." An estimated 9,000 global employees took part in the research, which was conducted by Censuswide.
When leaders prepare, they should practice in order to "develop the kind of muscle memory of the speech, of the rhythm of a speech," says Jeff Shesol, founding partner of West Wing Writers.
"Even if you're a naturally a good speaker, simply the act of having said it out loud even just once, but ideally more than once, really without any guidance, will improve your delivery," he says.
This helps them determine where the pauses and emphases are. They also might sense where the speech drags and should be cut.
"Some people talk with their hands; some don't," says Drew Keller, president of StoryGuide.net and an Emmy-nominated PBS writer and editor. "Typically, the more anxious they are, the more stressed they are, the stiffer they are."
Keller reminds interview subjects that in his medium—video—he usually isn't recording live. If they don't like the way they said something, he can start over.
Every organization has values, just as every human has values. Some organizations have values that encourage an “I win, you lose” dynamic. Some embrace a “service to others” environment. Some emphasize “results, results, results” while others embrace a family and teamwork dynamic.
We see a wide range of values demonstrated in organizations, large and small, around the globe. Values are the foundation of an organization’s culture – for better or worse.
The challenge is that most leaders – senior executives, directors, small business owners, team leaders, regional heads, etc. – do not pay attention to the health and quality of their organization’s culture.
They’ve never been asked to do that. They may not know how. The vital metrics that leaders are typically held accountable for are performance metrics. It is rare for leaders to be held accountable for the quality of their work environment or for happy, engaged employees.
What happens when we wait? Logical consequences happen. Logical consequences are things that naturally occur in work and life. If you do (or don’t do) “X” then “Z” naturally occurs. There are good and bad logical consequences.
What is a logical consequence of deferred furnace replacement? You saved money but you froze a couple of nights. Logical consequences of an unhealthy diet? Diabetes, heart trouble, obesity, and worse.
One business issue that is too frequently deferred is dealing with a lousy culture. Business leaders reach out to me because they’ve read my book or my articles, listened to my podcast, or heard me speak. They know their business culture is unhealthy. They’ve tried a number of things but nothing changed. They know they need outside expertise to guide them to a safe, inspiring, productive culture.
My job is to educate leaders on my proven process. My approach outlines specific phases that business leaders must drive. They can’t delegate the responsibility for culture refinement to anyone else.
Most embrace this responsibility. They let me serve as a behind-the-scenes coach so they can define, live, and enjoy their desired culture. Engagement, service, and results grow.
Reality: Email marketing might actually be one of the most effective tools out there. And it seems to be becoming even more effective in an increasingly mobile society.
According to an article by Aaron Beashel, an email is 6x more likely to get a click-through than a tweet. An email is also 5x more likely to be seen than a Facebook post. Beashel writes that email drives “more conversions than other marketing channels, including search and social”.
An article from the Campaign Monitor explains that for every dollar spent on email marketing, the average company sees a return of investment of $38. It also suggests that email is 40x better than Facebook or Twitter for acquiring new customers.
Not only is email marketing effective, it seems like people prefer it: 72% of people prefer to receive promotional content through email. In comparison, only 17% prefer receiving promotional content via social media.
“Consumers prefer email marketing because they are in control and they trust brands to respect their preferences,” said Bryan Wade, Salesforce Marketing Cloud SVP and Chief Product Officer, in a Q&A. “And they’re in control of email because marketers have rightfully given them that control, allowing customers to manage preferences and unsubscribes”.
Nearly two-thirds (64%) of Americans say senior business leaders should have public-facing social media accounts, according to recent research from G&S Business Communications and Harris Poll.
The report was based on data from a survey conducted between March 24 and March 29, 2016 among 2,018 US adults (age 18 and older).
Some 39% of respondents say they follow business leaders online.
Additional key findings from the survey:
64% of respondents say business leaders at large companies should not share personal opinions on social media. 36% of respondents want business leaders to address their company's vision on social media. 35% want CEOs to talk about products and services.
They forge working relationships with journalists. Different presidents deal with the media in different ways. Some readily hand out their cellphone numbers to reporters and make themselves available for impromptu interviews. Others require media inquiries to be filtered through the PR office, and only talk to reporters directly when absolutely necessary — such as in a crisis. Regardless of whether they prefer to be chummy or formal, successful presidents understand the importance of a productive relationship with the news media.
They figure out how to cope with stress. The high volume of demands on their time is an inherent part of the job. Many of the leaders I met with preserve blocks of free time — perhaps an hour every day or Friday afternoons — in their calendars to do things like exercise, ruminate, read, or write. Others travel periodically to recharge. In short, effective presidents find ways to manage the near-constant barrage of demands they experience.
They continuously prioritize. Successful presidents and chancellors tend to be very good at — to paraphrase Stephen R. Covey in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People — keeping the main thing the main thing, both for themselves and the people they lead. Many CEOs do so by monitoring key performance indicators — such as via analytics dashboards, regular updates from staffers, and/or by poking around. And they do it because they understand that keeping their institutions focused, and away from distractions, is a central aspect of their roles.
TED-inspired tips to enhance your next presentation 1. Have an idea worth spreading Whenever you step up to speak, take the time to develop a compelling core message — the one simple phrase or sentence that captures the essence of your presentation. My TEDx experience renewed my admiration for the brilliance and elegance of a simply stated core message. The most important thing you can do as a speaker is to develop your point of view, your idea worth spreading. Here are some stand-out examples from TEDxRaleigh that are clear, simple, action-oriented and easy to share: NO stands for “New Opportunity” Choose hope and dream again Create an experience
“It’s true that robots are taking away some jobs, but at the same time they’re creating lots of new jobs,” said Brynjolfsson, director of the Initiative. “The thing that’s different is whether or not the new job creation is keeping in balance with the old job creation, and there’s no economic law that says that’s automatically going to happen.”
In a report to Congress last month, White House economists forecast that there is an 83 percent chance that workers earning less than $20 per hour will lose their jobs to robots. Another projection, made by the World Economic Forum in January, suggests that robots will replace 5 million workers by 2020.
But in order for us not to see the effects of possible job loss, new jobs need to emerge at the same time that artificial intelligence replaces the old jobs.
“So, there’s a grain of truth to this idea that technology is eliminating jobs, but that’s a misunderstanding of the essence of what’s going on,” Brynjolfsson said. “It’s not that the technology is doing it. It’s that we’ve been using technology to automate jobs and create jobs, and those have not been in balance.”
It’s perhaps the oldest trope from any science fiction movie (outside of an alien invasion). Mankind creates a robot and imbues it with artificial intelligence. The robot then outsmarts mankind, and terror ensues.
Such movies have always provided great entertainment, but now some in the field of content marketing have expressed fears that this fantasy could become a reality. As data analytics become more powerful and allow for greater customization of marketing efforts, some wonder if the utility of live, human beings working in marketing has been diminished. Are robocalls and mechanized content marketers the future of marketing?
via Pixabay In addition to worries like this widely being sensationalized, they are largely unfounded. Yes, technology is becoming more and more advanced as well as more prevalent in the field of marketing. Yes, technology is likely to continue to spread its influence and increase its sophistication. However, there is no reason for panic. All the technology in the world is useless in the realm of content marketing without the proper human touch to guide it.
On the other hand, content marketers need to do everything they can to harness the immense power of technology. Thanks to powerful new data collection and analysis methods, marketers today have access to information about their customers in levels of detail that could only be dreamed of as recently as ten years ago. In the right hands, this information could be utilized to create incredibly powerful marketing campaigns that are tailor made to fit their customers’ desires.
Sharing your scoops to your social media accounts is a must to distribute your curated content. Not only will it drive traffic and leads through your content, but it will help show your expertise with your followers.
How to integrate my topics' content to my website?
Integrating your curated content to your website or blog will allow you to increase your website visitors’ engagement, boost SEO and acquire new visitors. By redirecting your social media traffic to your website, Scoop.it will also help you generate more qualified traffic and leads from your curation work.
Distributing your curated content through a newsletter is a great way to nurture and engage your email subscribers will developing your traffic and visibility.
Creating engaging newsletters with your curated content is really easy.