Cheil Worldwide Inc., a global marketing communications network headquartered in South Korea, announced a new vision to mark the company’s 40th anniversary of its establishment. The company also unveiled a new corporate identity reflecting the vision.
Dai-ki Lim, the President & CEO of Cheil Worldwide, announced new vision in his speech to mark the 40th anniversary. “Starting today”, he said, “the key word that identifies Cheil Worldwide is ‘move’, which is about changing the level of the company. We will change the level of our business, from an advertising-level to a solution-level, as well as our approach to work, from a work-level to an emotion-level.”
The company slogan, ‘Ideas that move’, reflects the new vision. Cheil makes it no secret to move the company to the level where it can move its clients and ultimately, the world. “The emotional cycle, where I can move your hearts, then you move our clients' hearts, and the company moves the world, is the vision for Cheil that I dream of,” Lim added.
Setting out an ambition to become a global top class company, Cheil highlights five core competencies; creativity, digital expertise, brand experience, analytics and integration which will all be transmitted to the world through its global networks. The integrated agency makes it no secret to continue to push sustainable agenda, to be a socially responsible company, which will in turn benefit the company, consumers and the society as a whole.
The new vision has already achieved some success. Cheil Worldwide has been pushing hard to further strengthen its retail marketing, digital strength and brand experience which give it an integrated shape and allow it to create work that goes beyond traditional advertising.
On the visual front, the new corporate identity represents the company’s commitment to position as a top global player based on its creativity. The new face also captures Cheil’s strong will to breathe with the contemporary generation and create solutions ahead of the times through the open design system which can proactively make responses in line with changing media and environments.
Hari Krishnan, Chief Operating Officer, Cheil Worldwide SW Asia also added, “We are already feeling a new kind of energy radiating within our offices, our people, our teams. Our conversations, our approach and the work we are creating reflect our renewed global vision of Ideas that Move.”
Cheil has grown from a small Korean agency to having 57 offices in 32 countries, close to USD 600 million revenues, and over 4,000 employees across the globe.
The past few years have witnessed a significant power shift toward mobile users which is only projected to increase over time.
Although the mobile industry initially offered such basic services as search and social networking, mobile users have come to expect a new level of functionality incorporating location-based services (price comparison, restaurants, etc.) and mobile payments (currently facing low adoption).
All of these mobile services collect data that promise a fantastic platform for customer value enhancement and monetization possibilities for publishers, advertisers, and technology companies.
Gartner estimates that the global transaction value of mobile payments will reach $617 Bn by 2016 from $105.9 Bn in 2011 whereas eMarketer estimates that mobile advertising spend will increase from$8.4 Bn in 2012 to $36.87 Bn in 2016.
The growth of mobile advertising will depend on how well it brings ‘relevance’ to the customer and ‘ROI’ to the advertiser by mapping customer information and buying patterns derived from purchase-related details.
Below are seven key user-related factors influencing mobile advertising and payments (the scope of this article does not include the advertising technology landscape such as Demand, Supply side platforms, RTB, etc.)
Consumers are increasingly using mobile search to find local information such as ATMs, restaurants, gas stations, and shops. Innovative solutions such as the Google ‘Click-to-call’ feature will drive increased search usage, advertisements, and payments.
Imagine you are in a new city and need a hotel. You use your mobile to search ‘hotels’ on Google and see a ‘phone’ icon at the top of the results. You tap the icon, a call connects you to the hotel and you make a reservation. Google gets paid at the time of the call for such ‘Click-to-call’ ads.
There are three main ‘location’ categories targeting users – Geofencing, DMA, and Audience.
‘Geofencing’ is used by advertisers to connect with people when they are within a certain location of a store, although it is experiencing mixed results due to awareness and expectations problems.
Although a large portion of a customer’s budget falls into the ‘planned’ category, impulse buying and instant solutions like the hotel example above will drive uptake of location-based advertising.
Geofencing will continue to get good uptake from the restaurant, retail and travel industries, whereas Designated Market Area (DMA) categories will see high usage by the political, auto, telco, and financial industries,
Audience segmentation targeting will top the auto, financial and consumer goods industries with restaurants leveraging it the least.
3. Shopping (Including Payments)
For some customers mobile is a communication or productivity tool whereas for others it’s also a shopping buddy. Initially the trend was to use a mobile to do quick comparisons, and location-based searches without using it for payments. But with new technology , innovations on the horizon, adoption of mobile payments is set to pick up.
Mobile payments have not really taken off due to a lack of awareness about mobile payment functions, perceived risks, fragmented technology at the point-of-sale, and retailers who are unwilling to invest in the changing POS infrastructure.
Innovations from companies such as Mobeam empowers customers by enabling retailers to directly accept loyalty cards, coupons, barcodes and QR codes from mobile phones and accept mobile payments without the need to invest in new scanners.
Mobeam uses a light source on the phone to ‘beam’ the bar code data onto the POS scanner. Samsung S4 users can use Mobeam technology to pay at traditional 1D bar code scanners (department stores, grocery stores, etc.), 2D bar code stores where retailers have already invested in POS equipment. They can also use Mobeam to beam coupons received via email and SMS.
There is no doubt that the growing number of users embracing ‘social networking’ have had a big impact on mobile and a number of start-ups have put Facebook on the defensive.
Popular messaging apps are creating a buzz in the social networking world: Kik (40Mn users) and Whatsapp, LINE (120 Mn users), Kakao Talk (80Mn users), WeChat( 400 Mn users) let you create personal profiles, build networks of friends, and share photos, videos, and music.
Due to their heavy user engagement and interactive nature such messaging apps companies are moving towards building their platforms to support various features and enable innovations from third-party developers, whereas established social networks are moving towards incorporating messaging features. The constant expansion of platforms, messaging apps and developer community is a perfect recipe for better user engagement, tailored experience and personalized advertisements.
5. Interoperability (including Cloud)
Users are now selecting solutions that allow them to have a seamless experience across multiple devices such as desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile. This is giving rise to cloud-based services such as Dropbox, Google drive etc.
Such services allow users to access, share, and edit from multiple devices, then push to other devices. Although people use different devices in different situations, they expect a unified experience, so receiving duplicate ads across their multiple devices will create a poor user experience. Consistency and relevances are the key to successful advertising.
6. Developer Community
Despite the size of a company, a strong developer community is critical to bring sustainable value propositions to a dynamic customer community with various operating systems and interest areas ( games, new, business, entertainment, music, etc.) .
With an increasing number of users turning into developers, it is a perfect space for raising awareness and innovation as it creates an intersection between intellect and insight (into a need), and the uptake of various apps happens if it strikes a chord with the individual needs.
Though currently in-app advertising seems to be dominating with a number of app developers paying for ads to promote their own app downloads (paid discovery) over time in-browser (mobile web) advertising will take over.
7. Data Protection & Privacy
This has always been a sensitive subject – even more so when it comes to mobile data protection and privacy because it illuminates a lot of your real-life activities and behavior. The majority of users are unaware that some companies have strong ‘opt-out’ policies which will stop targeted ads using inferred data about a customer but they will still receive generic ads.
Privacy is a area that is affected by lack of awareness, evolving policy matters and accountability aspects just as in any high-growth industry. However, mobile and overall online privacy are difficult subjects that governments are looking into — a fact that is getting some coverage in mainstream media as well.
Mobile phones can be a great boon to consumers. Despite privacy concerns, with more awareness, better policy control and accountability, the mobile industry is set to transform business models as well as our way of life.
Ramesh Ramakrishnan, a marketing and organisation culture enthusiast, is the author of www.futuristCMO.com. He has held various leadership positions across EMEA marketing, 3rd party advisory and analyst relations in the enterprise technology products and services sector. Follow @Ramesh_Ramki on Twitter.
As some of the best football teams in the world battle it out for the UEFA Champions League trophy, Heineken in India celebrated its association as global partner with the prestigious League, in the company of the Captain of the Indian Football team-Sunil Chhetri.
The occasion marked the announcement of the ‘Heineken Social Reporter’ –who will fly to London to enjoy the Heineken Experience and report on the UEFA Champions League Final for the Heineken Social media channels in India. The winner ‘Akhil Shah’ from Mumbai was selected from over 400 applicants received on the brand’s facebook app. Applicants went through a three-stage selection process both online and offline, that assessed their football knowledge and passion, apart from other softer attributes and personality traits.
Heineken also unveiled its plans for leveraging its global sponsorship of the UEFA Champions League, as it does so for the first time in India. As part of the Global Campaign titled The Road to the Final, Heineken in India is activating the campaign via digital and on-ground channels.
On Digital, the first initiative was The Candidate video which went viral and has received close to 4 million views worldwide. The Social Reporter campaign was, in fact, a follow up to this video campaign. The brand also unveiled ‘The Road to the Final’ ad, which features a lucky football fan, who receives a ticket to the UEFA Champions League Final. The only problem is that he is on the other side of the world and faces a race against the clock to get to the match. Through a combination of resourcefulness, imagination and inventiveness he manages to overcome every obstacle in his way – to be rewarded with the ultimate football experience – a pitch side seat at Wembley, arriving just before kick-off. This ad will be exposed via Digital channels and Social media in India, and can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/user/heineken.The brand’s Facebook fans can also play the highly addictive and social pinball game inspired by elements of the new ad.
On-ground, across bars and beer shops around the country, Heineken has introduced ‘The Road to the Final’ promotion – where consumers can win Heineken merchandize and yet another chance to win a ticket to the Big Final.
Samar Singh Sheikhawat, Senior Vice-President Marketing, United Breweries Limited said, “Heineken has been associated with the UEFA Champions League for seven years now. Given the growing fan following that European football now enjoys in India, we decided to leverage our global partnership in India for the first time this year with a multi-pronged activation program. We expect the campaign to make the brand more salient and desirable among young Indian consumers by leveraging a sport that they are increasingly relating to favourably.”
The newly appointed Social Reporter also had the enviable task of interviewing the captain of the Indian Football team Sunil Chhetri.
Indian star striker Sunil Chhetri, Captain of the Indian Football Team said, “UEFA Champions League is gaining immense popularity in India. I am delighted to see brands like Heineken bring the sport closer to Indians and build excitement around it. The Heineken Social Reporter is a very interesting initiative. I wish the Social Reporter an eventful and an exciting journey to Wembley. Happy reporting!”
We live in a rented apartment. It’s just more convenient at present. But is this a situation we intend to continue for the rest of our lives? No, because as we get older and have less flexibility to relocate, we would want to be in control, not dependent on someone else’s plans. And this is the way the vast majority of Indians think - and hence the high premium on home ownership even in cities where rental is vastly more economical.
The social cloud platforms entered our lives innocuously - an easy to use digital resume, a place to share files, back-up storage, park one’s address book. Nothing business critical. Or too personal. But that’s now all behind us, a time that belongs to the previous century.
Now, a LinkedIn outage sparks a Twitter outrage. Gmail powers the communications of many businesses. And our rich network of social connections reside on Facebook. No internet? The office just grinds to a halt. (Older folks might remember an era when the office phone conking was a reason for celebration, not the kind of stark despair that an internet outage triggers.)
I’m a big user of all the tools mentioned above. And I’ve now realized that though they are ‘free’ services, these companies ‘own’ me.
I have thousands of contacts on LinkedIn. More than perhaps the platform intended. So, frequently my address book is “not available”. And I am unable to export data any more which means that I can’t really use my address book outside of LinkedIn. None of these are problems that I can pay a little extra and get solved - the paid options are for other functionality.
Now, since I don’t actually pay LinkedIn any money for using their service, I feel rather guilty about having any complaints about it. They are bound to follow the dictates of their business and outliers like me are certainly not representative. And certainly it is an awesome platform that has been very useful to me and my organization.
I was a late arrival on Facebook, using it only in 2007 after hearing David Kirkpatrick at the Fortune Global Forum in New Delhi. But despite not having any strategy for this platform I do now have a number of relationships that are managed only through this platform, and it has a great archive of my photos - which was fantastic when I lost my laptop some years ago. But, increasingly, I find my feed being cluttered by ‘Promoted Posts’ that I cannot shut off. Receiving spam-like emails from folks that I’m not connected to. And a target for soft data harvesting. Again, there is no way to pay and shut off these unwanted features. So if I want to hang on to my social network, I must put up.
Twitter was less impacted by change than my other platforms. Till recently. They bought Tweetdeck, my favoured tool for bypassing Twitter’s own clunky interface. And my free tool is just not the same. Twitter has been great for me - helping me make a whole new bunch of friends based on similarity of interests. So again, I will lump the unpleasant change.
Cloud platform landlords behave a lot like real-estate landlords. As their property gets more popular, they hike the rent and become more arbitrary. So what can one do?
1. Have a Plan B available for the most crucial bits of your online presence. This Plan B should be on a platform that is accountable to you
2. Back up critical data on to your own server or in a paid-for service
3. Read the fine print on the free platforms and ensure that you understand the terms of service. Or read the reviews of the fine print.
4. If your business relies on a ‘free’ service it is worth exploring how you can derisk the dependency, even if it requires you to spend a bit more
I’ll conclude with the old adage - there is no such thing as a free lunch!
Image source: Google images
It appears that quick service restaurants in India have begun to woo the small-pocketed consumer, more aptly the young student crowd. As the competition gets aggressive, the campaigns have been getting adorable and more suited to the social media savvy youth. The most recent QSR to join the bandwagon is Domino’s Pizza India with its latest range of pizzas named ‘Pizza Mania’ at Rs.44. The brand has also released a TVC that revolves around the concept of ‘pehli kamai’ to highlight that one can party with Pizza Mania even with their meagre first salary.
Watch the TVC at the end of the article
‘Life mein pehli kamai chahe jitni choti ho, party badi honi chahiye“! Having said that, the brand has been leveraging social media as much as possible, to keep the message alive. From asking fans about what they did to get their first salary to running promotional contests on social networks like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, Domino’s Pizza India has been quite active in spreading the ‘pehli kamai-pizza mania’ deal on social media.
The 3.5 million strong Facebook community had been invited to a ‘Earn your pehli kamai’ contest beginning at the end of March, where fans had to perform in front of thousands of people to earn their first salary. The contest that was hosted on a Facebook app, required fans to upload solo pics and get at least 10 ‘likes’ to qualify.
The TVC that was uploaded on YouTube, was then shared on the wall after creating teasers about ‘first salary’ and announcing the new Pizza Mania range. Fans were invited to enter their comments below the YouTube video and earn ‘likes’ for their comments. The comments with the most ‘likes’ every evening by 5pm, would win Domino’s vouchers. Apart from that, the Twitter page of Domino’s Pizza India with more than 15K followers, has also been running the #PehliKamai contest, where the brand asked questions related to movies or the TVC. With free vouchers to win, the hashtag has been trending nearly the whole of yesterday and also today!
Trending hashtags, teaser updates on social media platforms and exclusive contests have become the order of the day when launching a TVC for a new product. Though KFC India played up WOW@25 to bring in the youngsters with a smart augmented reality app, where one could scan their note to discover what they could buy from the KFC WOW menu. The Domino’s India ‘pehli kamai’ campaign, although simple, has the potential to strike a chord with its endearing TVC and social media promotions.
Co-Founder and Blogger at Lighthouse Insights. A student of life, art and building relationships. Love to read just about anything and strongly believe that books make a beautiful world.
Published with permission from Lighthouse Insights
With the IPL 2013 season beginning on April 3, ESPNcricinfo – has launched several innovative new products and sections for cricket fans that debut across online and mobile services in India and globally in time for the IPL 2013 season.
The new sections and products combine with ESPNcricinfo’s coverage of the sport – including match reports, news, analysis and stats – to deliver the most comprehensive coverage of the IPL across digital devices.
ESPNcricinfo Match Companion is the first-ever ‘Social’ scorecard for cricket in time for the IPL 2013 season. Providing a second-screen match experience, combines standard scorecard information and stats with the functionality of social media – allowing fans to connect and engage with other fans and friends to chat, debate, play games, follow the chatter on Twitter and have tools to access in-depth stats, information and analysis.
Live and dynamic during every match of the IPL 2013 season, and available across personal computers and tablet devices, fans can useMatch Companion while watching a match to enjoy:
· Deeper Engagement – access a rich trove of stats, news and player info.
· Fan interaction & discussion – Interact with other fans while following the match on digital devices and engage in the social currency of the debate and discussion, sharing their opinion and hearing from others.
· All the matches: Follow all other matches simultaneously
· Live espncricinfo commentary – ESPNcricinfo’s world class commentators will keep users updated with ball by ball coverage and description.
· Chatterbox – Live discussions during the match between users and ESPNCricinfo the editorial team of writers and journalists, including discussions about team selection, strategy, toss decision and the progress of the match.
· Live graphs – At the end of every over, a live graph pictorially depicts how the match is progressing, the flight of each ball in the past over and acts as a clear indicator of each of the team’s performance.
· Facebook live chat – A direct plug-in into your Facebook account, users can chat with friends who are online on the site at that time.
· Timelines – Classic summarization of every ball of every over in a horizontal presentation.
· Games & contests – fans can participate in contests and games, such as Predictor, an application where users can predict who according to them could be the top scorer or leading wicket taker during a match.
· ESPNcricinfo Twitter – Follow the who’s who of cricket on twitter on the same screen even as the match unfolds - fans can catch all their live opinions and whacky tweets in a single interface in real-time.
A pioneer in innovative content and products, ESPNcricinfo has again led the industry and launched a first-of-its-kind online forum designed entirely around cricket fans and their voice. The Stands is for fans, by fans and of the fans. From detailed fan reports and commentary to photographs shot by fans and creative captioning of pictures, from polls on hot topics to tweet-sized comments, The Stands has numerous touch points for fans to sound off, speak up, discuss and debate – all of this and more, while still tracking ESPNcricinfo’s famed coverage of cricket from around the world. Among the many things to see in The Stands:
· Ask Rahul: In a weekly video segment, the legendary Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid answers one fans question about the game, his career or other relevant cricket topics.
· The Inbox: Articles and commentary from fans, writing on the aspects of the game that they hold are most passionate about.
· Fan following: A section for users to write in with their experiences from the stadium, capturing the thoughts of fans from the stands.
· Have your say: The section allows fans to state their views, debate, and respond to other fans’ views .
· Social media: full integration of the dynamic ESPNcricinfo social media content, including Twitter feeds and ESPNcricinfo live blogging.
· Your Shots: Fan Photo Galleries and photo-driven features.
· Games, contests and quizzes: Fans will be able to play cricket-themed games like crossword puzzles, suduku and Hangman, as well take quizzes and submit their most creative photo captions in Caption Contest – all for the chance at prizes.
ESPNcricinfo’s The Cordon is a single home for the work of a group of the most respected sports journalists and bloggers in cricket. Fans around the world can read and follow the latest stories and musings on an unmatched collection of writers, listen to podcasts, comment, discuss and share with fans and friends.
Among the contributors to The Cordon are: Sambit Bal, Andy Zaltsman, Alison Mitchel, Andrew Hughes, Jarrod Kimber, Anantha Narayanan, Kamran Abbasi, Samir Chopra, Paul Ford, Dave Hawksworth, Jon Hotten, Michael Jeh, Raf Nicholson, Mahesh Sethuraman, Jack Shantry, Safi Thind, Michel van Oorschot, Stuart Wark, Jonathan Wilson and more.
The Cordon delivers a new doorway to what fans have come to expect from ESPNcricinfo: a collection of the best, most interesting and thought provoking writing and discussion of the game.
Bose, Bhogle and Player Diaries
Among the many notable contributors to the ESPNcricinfo coverage are Indian actor, screenwriter and director Rahul Bose, who will author a blog on ESPNcricinfo focused on the socio-cultural aspects of the IPL.
Well-known commentator Harsha Bhogle will file a weekly video diary for ESPNcricinfo through the duration of the tournament, Harsha’s IPL Weekly. Additionally, ESPNcricinfo will feature player diaries throughout the IPL 2013 season, with players sharing their experiences of being on the road.
The Huddle: Daily Google+ Hangouts
Each day of IPL action in 2013, ESPNcricinfo will host The Huddle – a 15-20 minute video show via Google+ Hangout in which its leading journalists will discuss the IPL action. Hosted by Cricinfo’s editorial team that includes eminent names like Sambit Bal and Sharda Ugra, and featuring journalists, writers, players, commentators and experts, the shows will be an off-beat take on the matches, tactics, gaffes, controversies, off-field action and results. Videos of the discussions will be available on-demand to view live on ESPNcricinfo and on its Google+ page.
Additionally, each week during the IPL season, ESPNcricinfo will host a Google+ Hangout where fans can join the brand’s leading cricket journalists to engage in discussion, debate and dialogue.
Fantasy Cricket and Predictor Games
ESPNcricinfo Cricket Predictor: Through this Facebook app, cricket fans can sign in and play with friends, predicting the winner of each matchup during the 2013 IPL season, compete against other fans and friends and share their predictions on social media.
ESPNcricinfo Indian T20 Fantasy: Fans around the world can get in on the Indian T20 season by playing ESPNcricinfo’s newest Cricket Fantasy game. Create your team, set up and join public or private leagues, select players within a budget, make changes to your team via transfers, score points based on your teams performance and more.
ESPNCricinfo IPL Travel Guides
ESPNcricinfo features a special Travel section for the IPL 2013, delivering guides for fans travelling to each of the IPL destination cities. For each of the cities, fans have a single place to learn about the city, the stadium, where to stay if you visit, where to eat and party while you are there, what are the nearby “Must Do’s”, tips for travellers, photo galleries and more. Including expert input and tips, as well as user submitted insights and local knowledge – the ESPNcricinfo Travel section is a central repository for all the information that IPL fans need to travel and experience the matches – and their host cities - in person.
One more International Women’s Day (IWD) just got over. Many companies organized events, mostly around health advice for women. More speeches were given by women achievers on breaking the glass ceiling. CEOs and HR heads shared the need for gender diversity. And almost always these events are organized by women at workplace- of women, for women by women! Men rarely seem to attend the events. It’s like trying to evangelise the already converted!
Every organization today talks about gender diversity and stakes claim that they want more women at the middle and the top. In most organizations women at the starting level is not much of an issue. Management worries about losing women mid path and very few making it to the top. Companies which are serious about this issue, have come up with measures to tackle the bleed- flexi hours, working from home, crèches at work, second career, mentoring etc, are just a few of them. Is that enough?
At every IWD day speech you hear at least one person quote a McKinsey study that showed having women in the board or at the top meant better financial performance and that is a driver for increasing the gender diversity. However do companies really know what women bring to the table? Do men and women bring the exact same professional skills or do women bring some unique skills to the table? Are we measuring the performance of men and women the same way- productivity measured by number of hours spent, tasks completed? As a woman I have felt frustrated, guilty for not being able to stand up to the same measures as men. And am sure many others do.
Generally a manager’s reaction to the question what does a woman employee bring to the table would be restricted to warm and fuzzy stuff- loyalty and better team player. Which some describe as soft skills. Yes women in general are the pallbearers of the values, be it at home or work. They are the guardians of the deep culture. This is usually reflected in their loyalty and longevity at firms. They have a strong sense of community and invariably contribute to making teams better. Do these have positive implications for a business? Does this mean anything at all financially? Do the “soft skills” deliver “hard results”? I have personally experienced greater creativity, innovation and productivity in an environment of empowerment, collaboration and team work resulting in significant savings and financial gains for the organisation.
Maybe it is time for organizations to invest in finding out what women really bring to the table. Today there is recognition of the need for, what Daniel Goleman called, Emotional Intelligence in leadership to be more effective. It also assumes that the oganisations which demonstrate a higher level of emotional intelligence are more effective and successful in the long run. Most of the qualities such as empathy, managing relationships, building common ground etc that are central to emotional intelligence can be termed as “feminine”. Both men and women can possess them, but they are more naturally manifested in women. One direct outcome of increased number of women at the middle and higher level would be the greater presence of attributes such as collaboration, cultural depth, sense of purpose, working with ambiguity, cross cultural sensitivity.
Recognition of what women bring to the table is the easy part. That alone will not increase gender diversity. There is a need to connect the attributes women bring to the table and the economic value they produce. When we can translate the impact of specific skills to the bottom line, then due credit can be given to those skills through recognition and financial compensation. Maybe that will really make many more women stay despite their life events, or at least plan to come back to the workforce more readily. To know they are not stepping into a man’s world measured by the men’s yardstick, but into a world where what a woman brings is valued.
So before the next International women’s Day comes around, what if we put our best minds to create a story of what women bring to the table, how that contributes to better economic value for the organization and how it can be measured and rewarded. That might just address one key issue in increasing gender diversity!
Published with permission from sangeetasundaram
Whether in our client projects, our recent work on wearables, or even this year’s SXSWi Opening Party, we at frog spend a lot of time these days developing intelligent connected devices. From self-tracking equipment, to wearable computing, to ambient sensing and sensor-embedded environments, the Internet of Things was discussed more than any other subject this year at SXSWi.
Some of the best thinking on this subject was shared at Sunday’s panel entitled How Self-Tracking Geeks are Shaping our Future, featuring Gary Wolf (Founder of the Quantified Self movement), Lisa Kennedy (CMO of GE healthymagination), and Sonny Vu (CEO of Misfit Wearables and creator of the world’s first iPhone connected medical device.) The conversation highlighted emerging consumer wearable technology and health-related devices. As one would expect, the conversation eventually led the personal value of data generated by this equipment, but did not directly address the value of this data to the enterprise.
We all know our data has value. Why else would Google give me products, like search, Gmail, or Google Drive, to use for free? I know they are monetizing my data through advertising, but I don’t care because I get to use great products for free. Value exchange models like this abound in our digital experiences, from Google, to Facebook, to Foursquare (a company that has figured out, albeit indirectly, how to give me something tangible in return, in the form of that free slice of pizza I get from the pizza place where I am the mayor.) To date, the digital experience economy has largely been a one-way economy, with those companies who attract our attention monetizing our digital activity with their ecosystem partners.
But the great equalizer to make this experience economy a true, two-way economy may be the simple sensor embedded in my clothing, car, or public space. Digital value exchanges are beginning to extend far beyond the screen of my phone or laptop. Embedded sensors will allow me to increasingly exchange my activity for currency.
Today, financial services companies and large employers are largely leading the push in this area. By putting a Snapshot device in their cars, drivers can lower their car insurance premiums with Progressive. Johnson & Johnson gives $500 to employees who will share their biometric data.
Soon, these value exchanges will not be limited to insurance companies or the like. Savvy consumer businesses will mimic online models by lowering the retail price of their sensor-embedded products in order to build up a devoted network of users. Gary Wolf hinted to the fact that companies may even pay consumers simply to learn about the patterns in their data and will explore necessary incentives to “share data coming off of wearables” as none exist today.
Let’s consider the t-shirt equivalent of Gmail, a theoretical Nike garment with embedded sensing technology. The sensors inherently increase the production cost of the shirt and it will carry an ongoing cost to Nike to track and store data over time. But Nike might consider giving a discount on that sensor-embedded shirt, if the buyer promises to wear it running everyday on the streets around town or in a crowded gym. Perhaps they would charge full price up front, but then reimburse the buyer for the shirt over time as the shirt is worn and tracked.
Gary Wolf actually called out Nike specifically at SXSWi, calling Fuelpoints, Nike’s digital metric for health, an “arbitrary” unit of measure. We agree that Fuelpoints may be arbitrary and Wolf is right to call out the great deficiency of today’s wearable devices streaming all their data to isolated platforms. But from a strategic perspective, has Nike established a model in Fuelpoints to create its own digital activity currency? We may reach a point someday where we can exchange Fuelpoints for additional products, or even trade them in for cash.
Recently, frog debuted a series of wearable technology concepts. One of these wearables, the Kinetik, could take personal reward a step further by integrating the energy we generate daily to power our personal devices with the option to further pool generated energy as a community.
Would the U.S. be known as the most obese country if Americans got paid for our personal energy creation? We know that we would be creating energy (and burning it) whenever we could to make extra money. Who wouldn’t? This idea might extend to the connected home. What’s missing today is action and consequence. While we get a bill at the end of the month, it’s not clear when we make (or save) money in this old model. Connected home companies could start partnering with power providers to engage users in making money in real time.
As Sonny Vu indicates, the influences of the Internet of Things may not be as overt and explicit as the value exchanges bartered above. Instead, it may be more subtle cues that our body will learn to respond to automatically. Vu talked about wearable devices delivering “real time feedback at the edge of your consciousness to influence behavior change." This leads us to consider the interaction between wearable devices and sensor-embedded environments. As we move about our world, the experience economy of the future could issue continuous invitations for value exchanges. Through the use of phatic technology, for example, a wearable such as the highly anticipated iWatch (better described as iWearable), could be the mediator of the value exchange. As you pass by an enabled retail environment, for example, a subtle phatic cue will tell you that an offer is waiting inside the store. Personal data won’t be mined. Instead, it will be our greatest consumer power, as we choose to accept the offer of a business relationship or not.
Some of Lisa Kennedy’s comments suggest that this model may be farther out than we think, saying, “A lot of people underestimate the value of information…Everything comes down to incentives," and little is being done today to incentivize. But as the Internet of Things is becoming more prevalent on our bodies and in the spaces we occupy, tangible financial incentives will invariably follow and we cannot help but believe that a viable activity economy may be in our near future.
Graeme Waitzkin is a senior strategist in frog's Austin studio.
Laura Richardson is an experience design director in frog's Austin studio.
Published with permission from design mind
Recently, newspapers screamed the fact that the Reader’s Digest’s USA operations had filed for bankruptcy. At the same time, its Indian operations were continuing to grow in circulation and readership, both in the print and online versions. Reader’s Digest was conceptualized at its birth in 1922 by its founder DeWitt Wallace as a “small” magazine for a readership of families on the brink of the middle-class, looking for information and ideas presented in simple form and easy-to-read English. Its values were individualistic, pro-capitalistic and family focused.
His key idea was always small – a small magazine that collected articles from other publications, simplified and condensed for people who wanted to keep up with things, but did not have the time, money or verbal resources to follow the lengthy, wordy, intellectual style of other magazines at that time. It also invited reader participation by paying them a fee for their contributions to such features as Humor in Uniform and Laughter is the Best Medicine. In its heydays in the 70’s and 80’s it was the largest selling magazine in the US.
However in the 2000’s Reader’s Digest began to face the onslaught of the Internet as did all other legendary American print magazines such as Newsweek and Time. In addition, it faced an across the board decline in interest among the American public in general interest magazines. Compounding its woes of declining consumer relevance was the decision to go public in its ownership, leading to a takeover of an investment group that loaded it with debt to pull off the deal. The resultant outcome was a bankruptcy declaration as an effort to keep the company afloat in the US.
At the same time, its sales in India are growing. The Hindi edition did not take off. Mohan Sivanand, the editor’s theory is that this was possibly because its readers were actually aspirational readers of the English edition. The magazine sells over 5 lakh copies each issue and it adds 75000 readers annually from the Net and e-business initiatives. The differentiating concept of the Reader’s Digest brand seems well-suited to India now – with a huge population of readers on the brink of the middle-class, looking for information and ideas presented in simple form and easy-to-read English.
Lego is another legendary brand that was faced with a number of challenges in the 90’s. These included slowing market growth, mounting competition from lower cost Chinese manufacturers and changing consumer needs – triggered in part by the rapid growth in electronics and themed toys. Young boys, the mainstay customers of the company’s products were moving to electronic toys and games at a younger age and this seemed an irreversible shift.
The company responded to these challenges by leveraging its brand equity to support a slew of innovative entries into new sectors. Its leaders proactively searched for sectors where the ‘brand’ could dominate. Thus, they added to an already large product portfolio, LEGO-branded interactive video games, jewelry, education centers, an amusement park, plus marketing alliances with the Harry Potter franchise and the Star Wars movies.
The result of these efforts to keep the brand and company going into the future, was however negative. By 2003, the business was virtually out of cash. It lost 300M$ that year and projected loss for 2004 was 400M$ with bankruptcy looming the not too distant future. The turnaround happened when the company decided to bring back business discipline into its innovation and focus on its core products and its core brand equity.
If there is a clear lesson from these two cases for Brand Strategists it is - brand equity is not a free floating idea or concept, which can be attached at, will to support entries into unrelated businesses. Brand ‘extensions’ that is intended to carry the brand’s associative strengths that exist in consumer perception, into new categories must be approached with care. The metaphor of ‘property’ and ‘asset’ that is loosely used when describing the perceptual advantages of brands and the business benefit of branding to financiers, must not be taken literally. It is better to view each new extension as a “branded business” where the brand concept and business idea are woven strongly together. And the most unexpected conclusion of all – when faced with a declining market, it may be better to retain the purity of the brand concept and business idea and search for customers in new territories who would find the brand relevant.
Hamsini Shivakumar is the Co-founder, Leapfrog Strategy Consulting
Article image courtesy google
Vaibhav Tewari is the Chief Marketing Officer of Microland responsible for global marketing and services strategy functions of the company. He has over 17 years of diversified experience and has been at the forefront of many Industry defining businesses including successful forays into Technology and Supply Chain Management businesses.
A B.Tech. from IIT Kanpur and an MBA from IIM Calcutta, he co-founded and served as the President for iSeva, a leading Business Process Outsourcing Company and grew it to 2000+ employees prior to its acquisition. Subsequently he co-founded and ran o2s360, a B2B distributor loyalty and coupon management software company for 4 years. He worked with Citibank and Saint Gobain in early part of his career. He has also been actively involved in promoting entrepreneurship and mentoring entrepreneurs as well.
Name- Vaibhav Tewari
Organization- Microland Ltd
Designation- Chief Marketing Officer
Current responsibilities include- Global marketing and services strategy functions of the company. I am responsible for the full gamut of marketing activities across building brand Microland, market creation and demand generation. New services creation and marketing,digital marketing and branding across all stakeholders are part of the portfolio.
I am also an active mentor and I advise many Entrepreneurs on how to build their businesses in my free time.
My strength- is the ability to identify ideas and opportunities and convert those into thriving businesses. I enjoy looking at every idea and concept from an outside in view and from a client and business perspective. We are all in our businesses because of clients and having the view which works for them first is very critical.
A trait I would like to change about myself- Yet to find!! Jokes apart, I can be easily bored with one activity over time and sometimes I believe that can be improved.
The big idea moment- I am a firm believer in the adage that a cat has nine lives and so do humans. I have lived few of those 9 so far and look forward to rest of it. I have been in very diverse fields in my career so far and each of those have been big idea moments, whether that is starting the career as a Banker, starting one of the first BPO companies in India or building a technology company brand, all have been big idea moments for me.
Turning point in my career- My first Entrepreneurial venture, iSeva. It was my first brush with risk taking, opportunity to create a significant business, a brand, a new Industry and of course a large employment opportunity for people at large.
When things fail - I usually take a step back, learn from it and move on- I don’t think anything is a failure in life. There are only learning opportunities in life. Some are seen as success, some as failure…I have seen both sides of it. Also I spend significant efforts in learning from others’ mistakes too.
Being a leader is to transition oneself from Me to We. Surround yourself with people who complement you from the collective skills perspective and then enabling, empowering and mentoring them to go beyond their boundaries is leadership for me.