'Emerging Platforms' Category

The Broadening Use of Sensor Technology

Posted by Anna Johansson on October 28th, 2014 at 9:53 am

In recent years, tech developments have involved some pretty cool products and devices. As we proceed toward increased automation in every area of our lives, the value of sensor technology is becoming increasingly apparent.
It takes only a quick glance to recognize that sensors are taking over our world and improving our quality of life.
The state of sensor technology
Sensors are everywhere, though we rarely notice them. Inside your phone, at traffic lights, on your refrigerator, in your smoke detector … the list goes on.
Sensors have long been a favorite tool of technology for product development teams, but never have they been put to better use than now. Nearly every electronic gadget is equipped with some sort of sensor tech; we’re moving toward a society where nearly everything is monitored by or dependent upon the capabilities of sensors.
According to a Forbes.com article by Chunka Mui, sensors will be one of the six most important technologies over the next few years. Mui asserts that every company, regardless of its field, will need to familiarize itself with cloud computing, mobile devices, social media, cameras, sensor technology, and emergent knowledge if it wants to stay competitive in the long run.
While sensor technology and its utility... Read more

2015 Just Around the Corner: So What’s the Skinny on Digital Marketing Trends?

Posted by Neal Leavitt on October 26th, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Quality content. Content marketing. Mobile-friendly content. Ad retargeting.
Scores of pundits and prognosticators awake and arise this time of year from their marketing crypts to make predictions, outline scenarios on what they see as hot digital marketing trends for the upcoming year. And we see a lot of those aforementioned terms – and others – you know what some of them are - year-after-year, being bandied about and re-purposed.
To use some pirate vernacular, “arrrggggghhhhhh!”
All good-intentioned, most impart a lot of useful info-nuggets but it’s easy to get lost in the morass.
So is there anything really interesting that might help drive awareness of products/services, and ultimately sales next year?
Yup.
Internet Retailer recently did a search marketing survey (full results being published in November) from mid-September to mid-October encompassing responses from 95 participants; about two-thirds identified themselves as working for web-only retailers.
Some interesting survey snippets:
• 46.2% reported increased traffic to their e-commerce sites over the past year through natural, or organic search;
• 32.9% generated at least half of their online sales through their paid search and organic search programs combined;
• 40.3% said their search marketing budgets increased over the past year;
• 53.3% said they would increase their pay-per-click search spending... Read more

Cloud-Based Point of Sale Benefits

Posted by Morgan Sims on October 26th, 2014 at 11:21 am

Recently, with the invention of apps that turn iPads into point of sale terminals, it has become clearer that these devices offer a lot in terms of scope. A good example is the use of the cloud to store information off-site in an incorruptible and safe location. The cloud was one of Apple's major innovations, allowing constant backups of information that can be synced with an account should the hardware device fails. In the case of retail merchants, this is especially useful. Since iPads were not designed as industrial-level machines, it is possible that the hardware may suffer some unfortunate mishaps during the course of normal operation. The cloud offers an easy way to ensure that no data is lost if a particular terminal goes down. There are a lot more benefits to using cloud-based data storage and processing to complete point of sale transactions. Some of these are:
Data Access
Marketing professionals and tech gurus around the world will tell you that one of the most important things you can have from a business from a marketing perspective is its sales numbers. By adopting the iPad as your point of sale terminal you get access to data at a rate... Read more

The Collaborative Economy: What Big Brands are Learning from Disruptive Startups

Posted by Kent Lewis on October 23rd, 2014 at 6:05 pm

The final session of the day at Startup Marketing Conference focused on the collaborative economy and how large brands are learning from disruptive startups. Ben Kaplan from PR Hacker hosted the session and mentioned how brands like GE and Virgin are learning from and collaborating with startups. Kaplan also mentioned Meow Mix CatStarter as a recent example of leveraging a passionate community willing to innovate.
Matt Kaufman, President at CrunchBase, kicked off by sharing an example of how Nestle is working with startup to stay ahead of the game. From his experience, Kaufman believes brands aren’t exactly sure what they want. That means agencies can get into a trap of selling what they know instead of what agencies need. It also increases the chance the brand won’t buy something they are not sure they need, even if they can afford to pay.
Michelle Regner, CEO and Co-Founder of Near-Me.com, discussed how big brands look to her company for help in understanding the customer journey. For example, Cisco wanted a better way to sell used routers and Near-Me created a marketplace for the partners to use. She also mentioned Hallmark creating an Etsy-type marketplace for customers to interact, and Hallmark gets the benefit... Read more

Startup Marketing Conference: Running A Marketing Organization That Supports Sales At All Levels

Posted by Kent Lewis on October 23rd, 2014 at 4:51 pm

For the mid-afternoon expert panel session at Startup Marketing Conference, an esteemed group of marketers and technologists discussed how to manage a marketing organization that supports sales at all sizes of business. Panelists included:

Adam Metz, VP BD, Pandadoc (host)
Mike Berger, Director of Product Marketing @ Marketo (SMB)
Mikita Mikado, CEO, Quote Roller (startups)
Martyn Crew, Founder and CEO, Bootstrap Marketing (enterprise)

The first question related to each of the panelists first marketing objective and how they each nailed it. Mikado’s objective was signups and it took him three months to gain 4,000 users, but very few converted to paying customers. Crew’s enterprise background meant marketing supported sales and the key objective was deal flow. Berger’s primary objectives related to fueling the demand generation engine, putting in a system of measurement that correlated with business outcomes and creating a compelling story that differentiated the brand (messaging and positioning).
The next question: In the last five years, what was the single worst investment you made in marketing? Crew stepped up and led with general feedback from clients who were asked that question and the answer was universally “feel good” marketing campaigns (colors, fonts, and other fun stuff). Mikado’s thought was on hiring talent you don’t need... Read more