One Is The Loveliest Number That A Brand Can Do

Written by Steven Bailey is eCommerce and Digital Marketing Consulting Executive at Deloitte Digital:


We all know that good relationships take effort, time, and a personal investment. The same holds true for establishing relationships between brands and consumers.

Brands that demonstrate the ability to anticipate their targets’ needs and be interesting will be rewarded with more loyal followers and consumers advocating their products for them. Yet, despite spending trillions of dollars globally on marketing efforts to create better relationships, many brands are still unable to reach consumers as well as they’d like to, and they lack the data to refine the engagement they do have.

As a substitute, marketers devise expensive multichannel campaigns by segment–often failing to achieve and sustain higher conversion rates, increased lifetime customer value, or share of wallet so many marketing teams live and die by.

What’s missing in their engagement strategies?

To begin, many brands don’t interact with consumers as the individuals they are. Aggregating data about all interactions with an individual into a master marketing record can enable marketers to achieve hypersegmentation–in short, a segment of one individual, not just a block of individuals who receive the same communication, the same way, as part of a traditional one-way, mass-audience campaign. Just like a good friend knows more about us than anyone, brands need a master marketing record to build a more complete picture of the individual, and leverage that context to foster a more meaningful relationship.

Potential strategy: Pick a robust technology designed for tracking the master marketing record and relentlessly tie all marketing efforts and technology to that record. Integration with a marketing automation tool or CRM back-end can further enhance the quality and breadth of data.

Contextual Content Marketing
We already know that simply more data about individuals isn’t the answer; brands also need to have something valuable to say. That requires a compelling, content-led marketing strategy. Marketers have understood that they need to publish more rich content and less marketing hype, but few have the people or budgets to set up in-house publishing teams. Many brands try to post a few interesting tidbits on social media and hope for a viral hit, but they need to be more than a one-hit viral wonder that fades away quickly.

Think about it: We all know those individuals we want to be around–the ones who are great conversationalists and seem to always have something interesting to say. We seek these individuals out, and their messages rise above the din of others. The expectations are no different for brand relationships. Take your newfound hypersegment of one and look for ways to provide a combination of external and in-house content delivered in the context of the individual’s interaction with you. Leveraging outside content eases the burden on in-house teams to produce content, while providing audiences with deeper, more meaningful, interactive content from a community of contributors.

Potential strategy: Leverage an audience management tool to identify fine-grained audience segments, and define internal and external sources for content and news relevant to each segment. Then leverage a content aggregation solution to feed the combined content set to multiple delivery vehicles.

Community Building
A platform for a community of contributors creates a center of gravity to attract more people while retaining existing visitors–something often referred to as “stickiness.” View your online properties and social media outposts as more than product catalogs, transactions, and campaign outlets, and more as opportunities to create a destination for a community to interact and learn from each other. Done well, your newly created community will be able to cut through the noise to reach each individual with information that is both of value and supports your brand strategy. Give people a reason to keep coming back for more, and let them know it’s about them, not you.

Potential strategy: Design your Web properties as a destination with content that brings value to your customers; do not lead with product information. Give your audiences easy tools to engage in a common conversation through social sharing, aggregation, and community tools. Treat every campaign like a social campaign.

Fresh Engagement
Finally, the conversation needs to adapt and stay fresh so people don’t lose interest in your brand. Near real-time agility to keep the conversation engaging, personal, and relevant is required. Brands need to be able to strategically map out, and systematically execute, a constant flow of engagement that matches the intersection of personal interest, community preference, and market trends relative to your brand. A lack of data or content sources to create such ongoing interaction has not been the problem. Rather, the ability to aggregate, target, and distribute at the right speed and at the right cost has been the key stumbling block to date.

Potential strategies: Implement content platforms that allow marketers to create and publish content quickly, without intermediaries. Change the culture and organization to promote content relevance above content perfection, and multisource aggregation over editorial-only writing.

In an era of big data and integrated tool sets that enable the management of constant and targeted conversations, marketers can better align their strategies beyond traditional campaigns and large blocks of customer segments–without breaking the bank. Those who shift to a conversation that supports continually fresh dialogue, community building, and hypersegmentation can reap the rewards of a growing base of brand loyalists who uplift your revenue and amplify your message.

And they’ll do so because you’ve created a basis of trust and are a source of valuable information–all while introducing them to a larger community they want to be a part of.

About Steven Bailey:

Steven Bailey is eCommerce and Digital Marketing Consulting Executive at Deloitte Digital.

Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting. Deloitte shall not be responsible for any loss sustained by any person who relies on this publication. Copyright © 2013 Deloitte Development LLC. All rights reserved.

The Underrated Marketing Machine Entrepreneurs Should Be Using

Despite YouTube’s undeniable popularity among consumers, marketers seem to be less familiar with the platform. Market-research firm eMarketer expects that just two in five U.S. companies, or 40.5 percent, will use YouTube for marketing purposes in 2014. The brands that are participating on the platform are giving cat videos a run for their money. Indeed, in 2013, three branded videos cracked YouTube’s top 10 most watched videos of the year for the first time.

Still, for more than half of the companies in the U.S. to not leverage the world’s largest video platform as a marketing opportunity is inexcusable, especially now that more digital media is consumed than TV.  And YouTube is no small potato.

With more than six billion hours of video consumed each month — almost an hour for every person on Earth — its viewership continues to skyrocket. It’s also not just a video hosting platform — it’s the most popular search engine after Google, ahead of both Bing and Yahoo, according to an infographic by Mushroom Networks.

Here are three reasons why marketing on YouTube should be a top priority:

Related: The 7 Secrets to Shareable Content

1. Ability to generate sales (not just awareness or leads). The top goals for social media marketing campaigns are to drive web traffic, to generate leads for future sales and to speak to brand fans, according to Chief Marketer’s 2013 Social Marketing Survey of U.S. marketers and agencies. Notice anything missing from that list? How about to sell something? YouTube is not only a social platform for engagement but a powerful tool for sales conversion that allows you track the consumer path to purchase from viewer to customer.

At Orabrush, we’ve been able to sell millions of tongue cleaners for humans and dogs and build a global brand using YouTube, proof that you can reach consumers for just about any product on the platform. That said, YouTube, like other social media channels, does require a company to create engaging, entertaining content that captures consumers’ short online attention spans.

2. Provides the best bang for your marketing bucks. YouTube builds brands effectively andcost-effectively. In my opinion, while cost per 1,000 impressions (CPMs) varies for traditional and digital advertising, YouTube carries more value than any other impression. Instead of a hopeful glance at a static display ad, a YouTube impression on an in-stream ad is 5 to 29 seconds of someone viewing your ad. At 30 seconds, it becomes a view. That’s real ROI for awareness and brand building. If you don’t put content on YouTube, you are foregoing significant opportunities to create organic awareness on your brand.

Related: 9 Ways to Reach Customers on YouTube

3. It’s where your target audience is. With more than one billion unique monthly users, YouTube’s audience encompasses practically every demographic your brand wants to reach. According to Nielsen, YouTube reaches more U.S. adults ages 18-34 than any cable network. In addition to that crowd, brands that want to reach a younger or older crowd can easily cater to those consumers as well.

I’ve made it this far without a single mention of going viral, and that is intentional. Exclusively pursuing a viral video strategy is misguided — creating sustained engagement to retain viewers and building a dedicated, loyal following should take priority. That being said, if a branded video is making the rounds on social media, don’t be shy to promote it to accelerate viewership and conversion.

When I parted ways with Procter & Gamble, after more than two decades with the company, I thought I had a pretty good grasp on advertising. Now, everything I learned at P&G, I do in reverse. Instead of building a traditional marketing and media campaign first and leaving digital as an afterthought, I start with digital at the center of the plan and then expand to traditional. It is much more efficient and effective.

More marketers looking to build brands can experience a similar awakening to mine and stop underrating YouTube. It’s every marketer’s dream, so wake up.

Related: How to Choose the Best Social Media Platform for Your Business


Jeff Davis is president and CEO of Orabrush, Inc. a company focused on providing oral care products for humans and canines. Using its reverse-marketing model, Orabrush has generated more than 60 million YouTube views and launched two multi-million dollar products – the Orabrush Tongue Cleaner and Orapup, the first tongue cleaner to beat bad dog breath.

Image via iStockphotokizilkayaphotos

Email Design Basics, Coding, & Data Strategy: The Email Design Toolkit

Written by , Contributor at ExactTarget

Email designers have a unique role—we’re the gatekeepers for worldwide email consumption. With such a great platform to help drive ROI and change the role of email in business, The Design Toolkitis a three-part compilation of email design basics, coding, and data strategy that will help you take your conversions and functionalities to the next level.

To lay a solid design foundation, this new series of reports will help your emails:

  • Look good. In Email Design Basics, take a crash course in the essentials—or affirm you already have a solid framework.
  • Work well. Get a general guide to writing HTML for email in Email Coding Fundamentals.
  • Get results. Data for Designers shares exactly how to take a strategic data-based approach to the way you design, considering both device-based inputs and performance-based inputs.

As you already know, subscribers increasingly prefer to read emails on mobile devices, and that fact must inform your email design decisions. The mobile nature of our society is making this increasingly important, with clear evidence showing in mobile sales and changing user behavior.

In one example, we found that many subscribers interacted with a given brand’s email program over time only in one platform—mobile or desktop, but not both. But when subscribers happened to open that email during their lifecycle on both mobile and desktop, they preferred desktop for clicking. You basically get one open and one click—so what will you use it on?

Email is the perfect platform to pair right-brain creativity with left-brain analytics, so we’ll show you how to flex your natural talents and expertise, learn from human behavior, use data to get results, and make smart decisions for a long-term email design strategy. Pull up a seat for The Design Toolkit—you’ll want to dig into these proven tips and advice from some of our top email experts.




New Social Media Research That Could Change Your Strategy

Written by Patricia Redsicker, Contributor for Social Media Examiner:

Are you managing social media for your business?

Do you pay attention to the trends happening across the social web?

If so, you already know how the rules and landscape of social media marketing are always changing.

But what you don’t know may not only surprise you, but also may make you think twice about your social media strategy.

Here are four surprising social media research findings you should leverage for your social media strategy.

#1: Users ‘Like’ Facebook for Social Logins

When logging onto sites with a social network ID, research by eMarketer shows that a majority of users (51%) prefer to log in using their Facebook credentials.

In fact, professionals across all industries favored Facebook. Only 28% of users log in with Google+. Facebook is also the preferred social login network ID for 63% of global mobile users.

social logins by industry, social media facts

Facebook login trumps all other social logins or registration requiring username and password.


Key Takeaways:

If you have a website that requires users to register, you should understand the concept of password fatigue. 92% of shoppers abandon a website rather than go through the process of recovering a lost or forgotten password. But if a website has a social login option, 65% of shoppers are more likely to return.

So if you have an ecommerce site and you let folks use Facebook to log in, then you already know their likes and interests. Use that information to personalize their experience:

  • When they log into your website, offer them products that they actually like or have shown interest in to improve the chances of purchasing. In fact, one of the benefits of social login is that it limits the incidence of mistargeted ads.
  • While they’re logged onto your site, they’re simultaneously logged onto Facebook, which means they can share a useful post or comment on a cool product. Make sure they find fresh, interesting, and shareworthy content every time they log in.
  • Users want value in exchange for giving up their personal information on your site. So offer them premium content such as training videos, SlideShare presentations, free ebooks and how-to guides.
  • To enhance brand interaction and social visibility, offer a community message board on your website that is only accessible to members who are logged in.

#2: Social Customer Care Demand Is Growing on Twitter

When it comes to social customer service (or social customer care), Twitter is becoming the place to be for consumers who want to reach out to brands. Research by Socialbakers indicates that 59.3% of customer questions are asked on Twitter, compared to 40.7% on Facebook.

facebook vs twitterUse Twitter rather than Facebook to address your customers’ concerns.

Key Takeaways:

Social media has conditioned consumers to get feedback fast. As a marketer, the risk of failing to meet this expectation can result in losing customers, getting a bad reputation or both.

  • Twitter is especially fast-paced, so here are some tips to providing customer care on that platform:
  • Train and empower your staff to respond promptly and directly to customers. If you can’t trust them to respond appropriately on behalf of the company, then you either have the wrong team or the wrong strategy.
  • Don’t let customer complaints or questions go answered for over an hour. If you wait too long, the customer (or prospect) may decide to move on to a more responsive vendor.
  • If you have to use your brand’s logo, try to personalize each response by signing each tweet with your name or Twitter handle.
  • Don’t just monitor mentions of your brand’s name. Try to evaluate sentiments attached to those mentions. Tweets that include words like “not working,” “fail” or “poor experience” should be resolved immediately, and to the customer’s full satisfaction.
  • Know when to jump into a conversation. Sometimes customers are just talking about your brand and don’t actually need your help or input.
  • Decide how to prioritize inquiries. Should influencers get priority over urgent customer needs or will you use a first-come, first-served approach?

#3: Younger Audiences Are NOT Unfriending Facebook

There’s been a lot of talk lately about teens unfriending Facebook. Turns out it’s not quite true.

Facebook has indeed lost its exclusive grip on teens. Young audiences are flocking to more visual platforms like Snapchat, Instagram and Vine; however, these stats fromeMarketer speak for themselves:

facebook teenage use

Teens and young audiences are still the largest demographic using Facebook.

Key Takeaways:

Like everybody else, teens and younger audiences have become multiple-platform users. That doesn’t mean they’re done with Facebook, it just means that their social interests are broadening.

Consider this: teens are particularly interested in image and video sharing. Sure, they can share images on Facebook, but they’re more comfortable on Snapchat and Instagram where there’s less drama—and parents are not present. So if your target audience includes teens and young audiences, don’t panic. Instead, try to enhance their experience by following these tips:

  • Be everywhere. If teens are important to your business, follow them wherever they goCreate and distribute content across multiple platforms (see #3 inthis article). Your brand will be more memorable for young audiences when they see your content across the board on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.
  • Be relevant. Teens live in an “egosystem,” so the only opinions that matter are their own and their friends’ opinions. So whether on or off of Facebook, engage them with stories and visuals that show how other teens like them are interacting with your brand.
  • Make it about them. Be very subtle when promoting your product. Instead, focus on what THEY can get out of it. Sweet Frog of Catonsville, MD does this well:
    sweet frog

    When reaching out to teens on Facebook, make it about them, not you.

  • Above everything else, make sure ALL of your content is mobile-friendly.

#4: Instagram Is the Fastest-Growing Site Globally

Facebook-owned Instagram may be the platform to watch closely, according to new research published on TechCrunch in January.

Active user base grew by 26% in the last six months of 2013. In addition, availabledata shows that Instagram had 90 million active users in January 2013. By January 2014, that number had doubled to 180 million active users.

instagram growth

Instagram is quickly becoming one of the most interesting places to be online.

Key Takeaways:

Users love Instagram because images are super-creative and interesting since users can choose filters after the photo has already been taken. But of course the best part is being able to instantly share those photos with a community of like-minded people.

In a previous post, we talked about how marketers can leverage Instagram to promote their brands. Some other tips I would add are:

  • Make your followers famous on Instagram by acknowledging their photos and sharing them with your Facebook fans. Starbucks does this well! They even go as far as updating their Facebook cover with Instagram photos created by their fans.
    starbucks instagram

    Nobody does it better than Starbucks when it comes to showing off their Instagram followers.

  • Make videos. Instagram now has short video capability, which means you cancreate 15-second videos that capture the mood and lifestyle of your brand. For example, if you’re launching a new product, take a video of your staff members behind the scenes preparing for launch, or show the actual launch with excited customers waiting for the move that bus moment!
  • Partner with other brands on Instagram. Whether you’re a small business or a big brand, you can leverage the relationships you have with other businesses by partnering to showcase each other’s photos. This works even better if your products are complementary.
  • Ask questions about lifestyles. For example, if you’re a shoe store, ask followers what kind of outfit and accessories they would wear with a new line of boots.


Top 10 Practices of Successful Web Analytics Organizations

By , Contributor at Adboe Blog:

What are the key ingre­di­ents for build­ing a suc­cess­ful Web ana­lyt­ics orga­ni­za­tion? You can be a great indi­vid­ual ana­lyst, but for your team to be suc­cess­ful, you need a sup­port struc­ture to turn your rec­om­men­da­tions into actions.

A suc­cess­ful Web ana­lyt­ics team influ­ences the entire orga­ni­za­tion to become data-driven and pro­vides mea­sure­able opti­miza­tion oppor­tu­ni­ties. Fol­low­ing are 10 best prac­tices that help cre­ate a suc­cess­ful Web ana­lyt­ics orga­ni­za­tion to sup­port the team’s success.

Solid Data
It all starts with a good ana­lyt­ics imple­men­ta­tion. You need a solid foun­da­tion to build both results and the trust of your busi­ness part­ners. If you or your part­ners don’t trust your data, then your part­ners can’t trust the analy­sis or your rec­om­men­da­tions. So, how do you get a good implementation?

Con­trol of Tags
How much con­trol do you have over your ana­lyt­ics imple­men­ta­tion? Ana­lyt­ics tag­ging must be updated con­stantly to keep up with site changes, fixes, and new opti­miza­tion oppor­tu­ni­ties. It is impor­tant to have the devel­oper resources that can make changes quickly. Adobe Tag Man­ager is an excel­lent solu­tion that allows you to make quick changes to data col­lec­tion out­side of the nor­mal devel­op­ment cycles.

Tight Inte­gra­tion with Report­ing Sys­tems
Once you have your devel­op­ment process in place, you must be able to val­i­date the data’s accu­racy. If you can eas­ily com­pare sys­tems, you can more eas­ily iden­tify issues quickly and build trust in the data.

Your Web ana­lyt­ics rev­enue data is unlikely to per­fectly match your finance rev­enue num­bers, but the vari­ance should be con­sis­tent. Mon­i­tor­ing that vari­ance often will alert you to any issues with the implementation.

Any vari­ance with your back­end data should be well under­stood and doc­u­mented. It’s com­mon for the Web ana­lyt­ics sys­tem to have a 2–3 per­cent vari­ance with the finance sys­tems, but any more than that might be due to a dif­fer­ence in how you define revenue.

Good Doc­u­men­ta­tion
A good “data dic­tio­nary” will define all the vari­ables and impor­tant caveats. What is the def­i­n­i­tion of rev­enue? Does it include gift cards or dis­counts? This should be clearly defined so that your busi­ness part­ners have con­fi­dence in the data and know how to inter­pret it.

The data dic­tio­nary is often a variable-by-variable guide, explain­ing what each vari­able cap­tures and how that vari­able can be used for analy­sis. No imple­men­ta­tion is per­fect, so you may want to flag vari­ables with incom­plete data or call out any caveats, such as dates when the vari­able was launched or issues occurred.

An “ana­lyt­ics events” cal­en­dar can help ana­lysts under­stand anom­alies in the data due to sale events, code changes, or out­ages. Also, you might want to make an intranet or doc­u­ment repos­i­tory avail­able to your busi­ness part­ners that con­tains links to the data dic­tio­nary and other rel­e­vant documentation.

Venue for Shar­ing Ideas and Suc­cesses
Great analy­sis is use­ful only if it’s used to improve per­for­mance. To this end, suc­cess­ful orga­ni­za­tions hold round­ta­bles of busi­ness users or ana­lysts to share suc­cesses and rec­om­men­da­tions for improved mea­sure­ment. Typ­i­cally, this is done by func­tional area, such as mar­ket­ing or mer­chan­dis­ing. This also helps the ana­lyt­ics man­ager under­stand how the busi­ness users employ the data.

Fur­ther, shar­ing suc­cesses with exec­u­tives helps build sup­port for addi­tional ana­lyt­ics projects and resources. Build­ing out a doc­u­ment repos­i­tory for shared analy­sis is an impor­tant part of this process.

Strong Under­stand­ing of Busi­ness Processes
Learn­ing how your busi­ness part­ners do their jobs gives you bet­ter insight into the types of data and analy­sis that will make them suc­cess­ful. It also helps you iden­tify what types of mea­sure­ment improve­ments will lead to improved reporting.

The goal of a great ana­lyt­ics orga­ni­za­tion is to feed the busi­ness users exactly the right infor­ma­tion at the right time to make informed deci­sions that will lead to higher con­ver­sions. When work­ing with busi­ness part­ners, you must know what actions they will take, not just what data they need.

Early Involve­ment with Projects
Before a new site fea­ture launches, define the mea­sures of suc­cess. Is a site fea­ture going to increase con­ver­sion or vis­its or units per trans­ac­tion? A true data-driven orga­ni­za­tion asks these ques­tions before the project starts. Early involve­ment ensures that the imple­men­ta­tion is updated to cap­ture the key metrics.

The ana­lyt­ics team should also play a key role in devel­op­ing the busi­ness case to cre­ate a new site fea­ture. Addi­tion­ally, you should ask how busi­ness users will opti­mize a new site fea­ture. For exam­ple, for a new search engine, you might want to mon­i­tor search terms and null results and opti­mize the dic­tio­nary; this may require a dash­board for on-going opti­miza­tion. Finally, for each site fea­ture or func­tional group, you may want to doc­u­ment pos­si­ble analy­ses and optimizations.

Play­books are the next step up from a basic data dic­tio­nary. A play­book out­lines how to do basic analy­sis for a spe­cific site fea­ture or func­tional area. It out­lines the basic busi­ness ques­tions and shows exam­ples of how to answer those ques­tions. A play­book pulls together all the details of how mea­sure­ment is imple­mented and how a busi­ness user can use the data to take action and opti­mize the site.

You might cre­ate play­books for cer­tain func­tional groups, like mer­chants or off-site marketing—or you could aggre­gate exam­ples for site fea­tures, like search or refine­ments. Doc­u­ment­ing ana­lyt­ics strate­gies is help­ful for increas­ing your organization’s ana­lyt­ics matu­rity. The doc­u­men­ta­tion is also excel­lent train­ing mate­r­ial for new team mem­bers and busi­ness partners.

A Sys­tem to Log Requests
Man­ag­ing a huge back­log of requests is a com­mon prob­lem for Web ana­lysts. Com­ing up with a sys­tem to log and pri­or­i­tize those requests is crit­i­cal. You must pro­vide back­log vis­i­bil­ity to your man­agers and stake­hold­ers to ensure that you han­dle the most impact­ful requests first.; this can help you jus­tify addi­tional ana­lyt­ics resources.

Your Out­look inbox is not the ideal sys­tem to log and man­age crit­i­cal requests. One solu­tion is an online form, such as Adobe Form­Cen­tral, which is a great way to fun­nel requests into a spread­sheet that can be eas­ily shared, sorted, and updated.

Roadmap for Improve­ments
What are the long-term goals for your ana­lyt­ics imple­men­ta­tion and the entire com­pany? A great ana­lyt­ics orga­ni­za­tion needs an ana­lyt­ics roadmap to iden­tify and pri­or­i­tize top opti­miza­tion oppor­tu­ni­ties. Updates and improve­ments can be made to any imple­men­ta­tion, but such changes must take into account feed­back from key busi­ness users and ana­lysts and management.

Adobe Con­sult­ing has an ana­lyt­ics matu­rity model that out­lines the phases an ana­lyt­ics orga­ni­za­tion can enter and mas­ter from descrip­tive to diag­nos­tic to pre­scrip­tive. It’s impor­tant to under­stand the next steps your orga­ni­za­tion must take to become a highly effec­tive ana­lyt­ics team that dri­ves mea­sur­able results.

Final Thoughts
These tips can help your ana­lyt­ics team become more effec­tive at dri­ving adop­tion and suc­cess through­out your orga­ni­za­tion. It’s impor­tant to build a strong foun­da­tion that will help your ana­lyt­ics team build trust with your busi­ness part­ners and help those part­ners become active par­tic­i­pants in the ana­lyt­ics opti­miza­tion process.



4 Reasons to Make Analytics Education Your Top Priority in 2014

Written by   |  March 17, 2014   |

I have been bullish on data as long as I can remember, exemplified recently by posts such as “Data-Driven Leadership Is Your Organization’s Future,” “Data Is Everyone’s Domain,” and “We Need More People with Serious Data Chops.”

1. Data-Savvy Professionals Are Rewarded – Professionally and Economically.
I have personally seen that data-savvy marketers are leading or highly influential in decision-making and in strong regard at smart organizations. The above stats not only point to that, but also show that the average pay of those with a background in analytics shows they are rewarded appropriately.

2. Demand for Talented Data Professionals Continues to Increase.
To lead your current organization as well as be prepared for future opportunities, the ability to understand and use data is a great way to make yourself indispensable. With a talent gap comes a greater demand for those who can fill it and the already finite supply will continue to get squeezed more in the future. The time is now to get ahead of that.

3. A Shortage of Skills Indicates Opportunity.

Simply put, we need more people with robust analysis skills. The last point supports this, but it is noteworthy that both Gartner and McKinsey research (and our own experiences) agree.

4. Interest in Analytics Education and Professionals Is Growing.

Just for fun, we looked at search trends for a few analytics education related phrases and see a clear trend: organic interest in analysts and education continues to increase. Brands are hungry for talent, and professionals are hungry for personal development.

What to Do Next?



Facebook introduces 15-second premium video ads that auto-play without sound, stop if you scroll past

Written By , Contributor for The Next Web:

Internet Market Considers MIcrosoft Bid for Yahoo

Facebook today introduced 15-second video ads, which will start playing without sound as they appear on screen and stop if you scroll past. If you tap the video, it will expand into a full-screen view with sound. The company says users can expect to start seeing these new ads “over the next few months.”

Facebook first started testing what it calls “Premium Video Ads” back in December. The company says they are designed “for advertisers who want to reach a large audience with high-quality sight, sound and motion.”

Facebook sells and measures the new format similar to how media firms do with TV: based on Targeted Gross Rating Points to reach a specific audience over a short period of time. In fact, delivery is measured by an independent third party, Nielsen Online Campaign Ratings (OCR), meaning advertisers don’t have to worry about Facebook changing prices: they only pay based on what Nielsen OCR measures.

Furthermore, Facebook says it is taking steps to ensure video ads that appear on its site “are as good as other content people see in their News Feeds.” That’s very important if the company is to keep investors and marketers happy, without annoying users.

Facebook has partnered with Ace Metrix, which will help it review and assess each ad before it appears on the social network:

Ace Metrix will allow us to objectively measure the creative quality of the video in the Facebook environment, and highlight performance indicators for advertisers such as watchability, meaningfulness and emotional resonance. We’re taking this step in order to maintain high-quality ads on Facebook and help advertisers understand what’s working to maximize their return on investment.

The average Facebook user will be the ultimate judge. For its part, the company says it will roll out the new ads slowly so it can monitor how people interact with them.

See also – Facebook opens up its social TV data for the first time in partnership with UK analytics firm SecondSync and Facebook takes on Twitter with new tools to give TV broadcasters access to its user data

Top Image Credit: Chris Jackson/Getty Images


Twitter: Photos and Videos Get More Retweets

Written by Kurt Wagner, Contributor for Mashable

Twitter wants users to think “photo first” when they send a tweet, and there’s a good reason why.

Tweets that include photos or video links are retweeted at a much higher rate than those with text alone, according to new Twitter data. Tweets with pictures were retweeted 35% more often than text-only tweets, and tweets with video links saw a 28% increase in retweets.

Imagery isn’t the only way to boost your tweet’s reach. Adding a quote (19%), a number or digit (17%), or a hashtag (16%) also boost retweets, the data found.

Here’s the interactive chart from Twitter:


Adding a photo generally appears to be the easiest way to garner retweets, but each industry has its own secret formula. Users in the television industry, for example, saw more retweets when they included a quote, while those in the music industry saw the most retweets when a video link was added.

Those is government and politics benefited the most from adding a picture: a photo tweet sent by someone in government and politics gets 62% more…



The Difference Between Male and Female Marketers

It is in the spirit of International Women’s Day, Saturday, March 8, 2014, that I write this article. For many readers this may not come as a surprise, but men and women think differently. I don’t have to go beyond my own marriage for an example. It’s not often that I ask my husband to change a light bulb. I’d do it myself if I had a workman’s ladder that could fit in my apartment (not to mention my husband is 6’4″ without heels). His typical answer, said with sincerity and without mockery: “Do you want me to do it now?” After 23 years of marriage I’ve developed a sense of humor: “No, I want you to do it next year, but I’m asking now so you can put it on your to do list.”


Neurologists and psychologists have been grappling with the differences between how men and women think and behave for centuries. In researching for this article I’ve read countless articles about how men’s and women’s brains are wired differently. A recent study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania states, “In one brain region, women have more connections between left and right hemispheres, and men within hemispheres, while in another brain region, it is the other way around.” The researchers go on to say, “This may explain, for example, why on average men are better at learning and performing single tasks, such as cycling or navigating [obviously not changing light bulbs], while women tend to be better at multitasking and problem-solving in group situations.”

In taking a closer look at today’s work dynamics, I asked women at the C-suite level what they thought were the differences between the sexes in the workplace.



Lili Mahlab, EVP of Frontline Marketing, thinks that “often men in leadership positions tend to exude a lot of confidence.” Mahlab added, “It’s their confident attitude, especially when speaking in front of an audience that wins clients’ and colleagues’ respect.” Conversely, Mahlab talked about a female sales person on her team, who is somewhat hesitant when presenting. Mahlab coaches this salesperson to be more self-confident in order for her to elevate her sales wins. “People trust self-assured people,” stated Mahlab.


My way or the highway

According to researchers, men are better at dealing with the facts and tend to be more set in their ways. That means men may be quicker on the perception-action path, while women are better at integrating the analytic side of the brain with the intuitive and social side. Women excel at tasks that involve both logical and intuitive thinking. Mahlab said, “Women are often better listeners and tend to pick up more body language and voice inflection cues, which allow them to ‘course correct’ during a meeting.”



As an executive recruiter and consultant, I have found that people, both men and women, often stereotype. Mahlab chucked and told me, “It’s hilarious when I go into a meeting with a male colleague and the people we are meeting think he’s my boss — that is until I open my mouth.” But what really galls this successful female executive is that often people tend to direct the conversation to the men in the room rather than the women.


Conflict resolution

Many of my clients, both men and women, often tell me that women have a better ability to collaborate in business. Relating a story from her past, Soche Picard, EVP, group account director at Geometry Global spoke about working at a large holding company. The company had a long standing relationship with a Fortune 100 company who sponsored the Olympics ever year. One particular year, the company had the opportunity to bring together a number of its agencies under one platform for its client. Picard was tasked to “rally the troops by bringing the agencies together.” The concern for Picard was dealing with big egos in many of the agencies. “I know that I had to check my own ego at the door for the greater good. I had to understand the psychology of all the different players and how they could work together as a team.”


Talking vs. listening

Many women that I’ve worked with over the years have worked in predominantly male organizations. Mentally, women have the ability to get down to completing the tasks without their egos getting in the way. “What I’ve observed,” stated Picard, “is that women tend to listen first before reacting. Men lean towards the inverse. And, in my experience in this business, being an effective listener is a key attribute to being a strong leader — internally and externally.”

Chris Bart, a McMaster University business professor, and his research partner, Greg McQueen, administered a test to help board members assess their decision-making skills, as part of a training program. Here are some of their findings:

• Female board directors boost corporate performance.

• Some of the effects were measurable: Boards with more women are linked to a 53 percent higher return on equity, and their companies go bankrupt less frequently.

• The presence of even one female director can reduce the risk of going belly up by 20 percent.

• Women ask more questions, rather than nodding through decisions.

• Women rely more often on what the researchers call “complex moral reasoning” by weighing a broader range of factors and implications.

• Women fare better at making “consistently fair decisions when competing interests are at stake.”

• Men tend to base their decisions on rules and traditions.

• Women’s instincts make them better problem-solvers.

Increasingly, innate and beneficial gender differences are being used to build business. Yes, men and women are different. It is diversity of thought and behavior that savvy leaders seek when building their businesses. It’s about tapping the best candidate pools and ensuring retention of star employees. Smart leaders understand that men and women bring different skills to the table.

For more than 100 years, International Women’s Day has celebrated the social, political, and economic achievements of women while focusing world attention on areas requiring further action. This year, the theme of International Women’s Day is “Inspiring Change,” and the organization is calling for greater awareness of women’s equality, more women in senior leadership roles, equal recognition of women in the arts, growth of female-owned businesses, increased financial independence of women, more women in science, technology, engineering, and math, and a fairer recognition of women in sports.

It may still be a man’s world, but women are making slow but steady progress finding their place at the table in corporate executive suites across the nation.


Erika Weinstein is CEO and founder of eTeam Executive Search.

On Twitter? Follow iMedia Connection at @iMediaTweet.

Launching Your Mobile App — Count (and Measure) the Ways

If you have a smart­phone, you are famil­iar with the “reg­u­lar” way to launch an app: You click on the app icon on your home screen, and voilà — your app launches. Noth­ing fancy here. How­ever, there are other ways to launch an app.

Using email links or Tweets to drive cus­tomers to re-engage with a new release of your app or push noti­fi­ca­tions to drive aware­ness about the season-end clear­ance of women’s scarves are just a few of the valu­able tools in the app marketer’s arsenal.

Although pre­vi­ous blog posts dis­cuss how to mea­sure Push Noti­fi­ca­tions and Launch App Cam­paigns, a com­pre­hen­sive solu­tion that includes all of them — includ­ing reg­u­lar organic launches — has yet to be doc­u­mented. In this post, I share how to mea­sure how your mobile app is launched and any related cam­paign infor­ma­tion that might be con­tained therein.

Begin with the End in Mind

Before div­ing into the tech­ni­cal details of how to imple­ment this solu­tion, let’s take a look at what a sam­ple report might look like.


Here, we can quickly com­pare which app launch types are most com­mon — and more impor­tantly, which ones are most effec­tive in dri­ving engage­ment and con­ver­sion. In par­tic­u­lar, pay atten­tion to the organic launch type and how it com­pares to other launches types, because it serves as a base­line or a con­trol group.

Although the above report is valu­able in assess­ing the effec­tive­ness of the major app launch types, under­ly­ing each type (except organic) is usu­ally a vari­ety of cam­paigns. For exam­ple, a sim­i­lar report to the one above showed that there were 10 dif­fer­ent Face­book cam­paigns that col­lec­tively made up the 9,281 launches.

Dig­ging into the Details

Now that we have a bet­ter under­stand­ing of the types of reports and insights a com­pre­hen­sive solu­tion will gen­er­ate, let’s dig into how to do it.

All of the app launch types shown above — except for organic and push noti­fi­ca­tions — use URL schemes. URL schemes are sim­i­lar to the com­mon “http://” that we are famil­iar with on the Web, but in the case of mobile apps, URL schemes take on a more cus­tom form, such as “myAppScheme://.” (To learn how to cre­ate your own cus­tom URL scheme, see the Launch App Cam­paign blog.)

The table below shows exam­ple URL schemes and their respec­tive app launch types. These spe­cial URLs would be used in mar­ket­ing efforts within the respec­tive chan­nels. For exam­ple, the QR code URL scheme would be encoded into a QR code image that, when scanned by a smart­phone user, would launch the des­ig­nated app (assum­ing they have the app installed).

App Launch Type URL schemes (examples)
Face­book myappscheme://mycoolapp?fb_campaign=abc123
Smart Ban­ner myappscheme://mycoolapp?sb_campaign=def234
Web myappscheme://mycoolapp?web_campaign=ghi345
Twit­ter myappscheme://mycoolapp?twit_campaign=jkl456
Email myappscheme://mycoolapp?email_campaign=mno567
QR Code myappscheme://mycoolapp?qr_campaign=prs678

Here is the iOS code sam­ple for this…