Reasons why businesses move to the cloud

Small companies see the trend, bigger companies are following. Evernote, Wuala, Dropbox, or SafeSync were kind of the first movers and shakers of the cloud wave. Today, more and more businesses are moving their tasks and workplaces to the cloud.

The reasons are manyfold. Sometime it is their competitors that are a step ahead, sometimes it is the smarter working trend which allows employees to work anytime, anywhere at any project. Sometimes it is an IT setup, maintenance and support factor.

More and more companies see the advantages and collected some evidence that it offers mow productivity and flexibility. The cloud solves HR flexibility problems and offers new IT opportunities and destroys IT maintenance issues concerning service and support which the infographic by Yorkshire Cloud illustrates. The main benefits that the Cloud Computing Survey Outlook under 521 IT pros saw were…

– 61% appreciate the instant scalability
– 54% found cost savings as an argument
– 53% prefer the easier management of IT

Forecasts indicate that by 2014 the use of cloud services will increase 27% from 2010. The cloud computing industry is expected to grow to 240 Billion USD by 2020.

Are you seeing your company move to the cloud?

The new car retail experience: (Digital) showroom by AUDI

Remember the days, when you wanted to go in shops to see the desired car – experiencing it’s dimensions, the color, the feeling when touching the surface, and all of that? Let’s face it, there were many opportunities to get that shopping experience the digital way. Now, AUDI takes a new approach on addressing customer. They created the new AUDI City “Digital Showroom”.

The AUDI way is a fantastic new form of retail car shopping experience for a car brand. Do we need a big showroom on an expensive high-street building? No! This one fits in any street shop. Yes, it does! It is even possible in the classic shopping centers or malls. It means that car brands can move closer to customer’s day-to-day shopping trips. And no problem to let them feel the leather, the paint or any other materials they might want to touch.

Experiencing the Audi City Store is a virtual shopping trip in a traditional shopping atmosphere – just with digital projections on the walls to experience the driving fascination in big digital walls – right in front of them.

Cool or that, the question stay if this is hot?!

For 2013, IKEA will launch its first augmented-reality catalogue

While many companies still think about the value of Augmented Reality (AR) applications, IKEA is already using it to their advantage. In their new catalogue for 2013, IKEA embraces the opportunities to use AR to illustrate the right context for their products and to give some inspiration to customers how our homes might look like when we buy their furniture and accessoires. The catalogue will come out on July 30th and the IKEA CATALOGUE App will follow on July 31st in the app shops. The new catalogues sets a standard for all retailers offering catalogues in my eyes.

How IKEA sees their customer and how they use their solutions, can be seen from the following statement…

“For instance, we’ve stopped dividing life at home into rooms. Bedrooms, for example – they’re as varied as the ways people sleep. We’ve taken away our notions of what defined a ‘bedroom’ and replaced them with the idea ‘sleeping.’ We know that some homes don’t have ‘bedrooms’ – they have one 24-hour room where people live and sleep. Life is about activities; not the walls that define where they unfold.”

PS: I am desperately waiting to see their catalogue. Although I fear my wife might like it and then drag me along to their shops.

What do you think about the new catalogue and the concept behind it?

Study: Largest global corporates get over 10 million mentions a month; Twitter rocks, YouTube grows massively

Companies in the Fortune Global 100 get a total of 10,400,132 online mentions in a month. Twitter is the catalyst for them as it generates the majority of these mentions. However, YouTube is the rising star this year. This is the main findings of the third annual Burson-Marsteller Global Social Media Check-Up, which also includes new data provided by Visible Technologies.

The study states that the majority of the big corporates (87%) are using at least one of the major social platforms. The main growth can be seen at YouTube with 79% of companies now using a branded YouTube channel (57% in 2011). The average performance figures showed more than two million views and 1,669 subscribers. The development is illustrating the importance of integrating original multimedia content that can be shared on the social networks.

Twitter is still the rock-star among the popular social networks in terms of corporate usage. 82% of Fortune Global 100 companies have at least one Twitter account with an average mention of 55,970 times on the 140 character platform. The importance of Twitter ca be seen in the fact that stakeholders are following global companies closely.

Compared to 2011, the average number of followers per corporate Twitter account almost tripled to 14,709 from 5,076. On Facebook, the average number of likes per company page has increased by 275% in two years to 152,646 likes this year.

“People want to interact and connect with these major companies, and these platforms are the bridge directly to the heart of these organizations. What’s even more impressive is how much companies are engaging back with followers. Seventy-nine percent of corporate accounts attempt to engage on Twitter with retweets and @-mentions, and 70 percent of corporate Facebook pages are responding to comments on their walls and timelines.”
Burson-Marsteller, Chief Global Digital Strategist, Dallas Lawrence

Some more findings of the study…

– Fortune Global 100 companies have an average of accounts of: 10.4 Facebook pages, 10.1 Twitter accounts, 8.1 YouTube channels, 2.6 Google Plus pages and 2.0 Pinterest accounts.
– 74% of companies have a Facebook page
– 93% of corporate Facebook get weekly updates
– 48% have joined Google Plus
– 25% are on Pinterest

And whatever else you might want to know about the Top Global 100 you can find here, or within their infographic….

How mobile is exploding in 2012

The world is talking mobile. Desktops are dead. Smartphones and tablets are rocking! The market for mobile is massive and continues to grow around the world. Mobile is redefining the world we live in, the way we interact and the way we communicate on a daily basis.

The following infographic by Trinity explains nicely in a collection of stats how much the mobile market will influence our daily shopping behavior in the future. You just have to have a look at some numbers…

Worldwide, there are 6 Billion mobile subscribers. Obviously some own two devices which means that probably not 87% of the world population has one. The biggest growth comes from China and India that account for 30% of the growth. In only the last three years, developers have thrown 300.000 apps on the market. One of the main reasons why 1.2 Billion users access the Internet from their mobile devices. And the winner of all this development? Google! They sign 2.5 Billion USD in mobile ad spendings a year.

Mobile is exploding all over the world in 2012. And no marketer can dare not to see this development…

An agency outlook into the future of our information society

Looking into the future of agency business, we have seen horrible visions. This project at Hyper Island by Åse Holte, Fredrik Davidsson, Fredrik Ekholm, Hjalti Axel Yngvason, Kristoffer Jansson & Rasmus Stenbergh gives some positive outlook into motion pictures and information technology, and why brands should consider working with agencies.

The video discusses how motion graphics will continue to influence our daily lives, whether we will have bacterial lanuguage in the year 3.000, if Twitter and Facebook still exist, and or will Google run the world? These are just some thoughts of today’s creative brains…

The main challenge was mentioned by Nico Casavecchia from Boolab addressing companies communication activities “You need to find the balance between commercial and non-commercial work!” However, the opportunities for marketers in the future are nicely put George Giampuranis, Creative Director at Sid Lee into the quote… “You can’t just live in yourself. (..) There are so many more contact points to a brand. Basically any medium that serves as a communication tool.”

Information Society from Hjalti Axel Yngvason on Vimeo.

How to detect the ROI of Social Media

Remember when we found some statistics by the Fournaise Marketing Group that mentioned how weak business credibility of marketers in the eyes of their CEO’s is? According to the study 73% of marketers lack business credibility. In the end, it all comes down to what…? Correct: Sales!

Still, 77% of CEO’s think, marketers are not much focussed on sales… according to then study.

The only way marketers can prove their business efficiency is by making their bosses clear how marketing drives sales. However, the question is how Social Media can be beneficial in this process as it is redefining the ROI model that we know from the past. Do marketers need to change their point of reference? Does it matter to look at Social Media numbers, or is it better to focus on business figures? In my eyes the later helps marketers detect the secret sauce.

CEO’s might love marketers for a good promotion. Yes, awareness is never bad. However, they value a sales story creates is much higher. It tells everyone how their lead generation campaign led them to the last sales success which made their pockets full of money. And just imagine how marketers could use that for their social efforts…!

The following infographic by InventHelp gives some insights in how to value social reports for business results. How can marketers determine the ROI of their social media activities? What motivates consumers to like a brand on Facebook? How do successful campaigns on the social web generate the right customers that buy?

Tuesday generates highest engagement for social campaigns

Did you not ever want to know what the best day for a Social Media marketing campaign could be? Well, you can get some good indication with the following study…

Many Facebook campaigns go live on Fridays. However, the day that generates most user engagement for a campaign on the social network is the Tuesday, which ranked only fourth in terms of the number campaigns conducted. These are some of the findings of a recent study done by Yesmail Interactive. The results are based on a three-month study of consumer engagement with online campaigns for 20 major retails brands, including Abercrombie & Fitch, Gap, or Ralph Lauren among others.

The study with the title “Using Digital Market Intelligence to Drive Multi–Channel Success” figured out the customer engagement of campaigns on the most popular social networks. In order to understand campaign engagement, it compared the relationship between “volume-based engagement” of Facebook campaigns (number of “likes” or comments a campaign generates) and “actual engagement analysis”. The finding is quite obvious, in that the lower the brand “likes”, the fewer likes and comments a brand on Facebook gets. Still, independent of the size of their fan base, some retail brands generate higher engagement levels than others through Facebook. Nevertheless, average-performing brands still performed as engagement winners, including i.e. Ann Taylor, Eddie Bauer or Kenneth Cole. 

Although, we have already reported that a balanced frequency in posting status updates is important for the success of a Facebook campaign, there is no blueprint and guarantee for success. The most engaging brands had deployed between 20 and 32 campaigns per month. Compared to the five least engaging brands with 54 campaigns per month, it becomes obvious that posting less frequently is better. From a timing perspective, the best Facebook engagement was generated for campaigns launching between 10 pm and 12 am Eastern time (EST) which was also the least-used deployment time slot.

For Twitter, the research showed that most Twitter campaigns (20%) were conducted on Friday, which again is the least engaging day for such campaigns. Almost on the same engagement level performed Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday as those most engaging campaign days. Over 84% of all Twitter campaigns were deployed within regular work hours (between 9am and 7pm EST).

The performance of the 20 retail brands on Twitter showed big differences. Although Forever 21 came in first in terms of follower base, the brand’s campaigns showed significantly lower engagement among followers than the campaigns of brands with smaller follower bases.

The five most engaging brands did 45 to 70 Twitter campaigns per month on Twitter versus the five least engaging brands with an average number between 95 and 115 Twitter campaigns per month. It shows again that lower frequency is better than big blast promotions. If marketers want to generate high engagement, they should place their campaigns between 5 am to 6 am and 7 am to 8 am EST.

In terms of YouTube campaigns, the study found that 85% of the brands studied have a YouTube channel. Still, just 35% deployed campaigns during the research period. Some more findings indicate that on average, retailers conducted 3.5 campaigns per month during the study. The best day for interaction occurred to be Monday. Do we have to mention that this was the least likely day for campaign deployment? YouTube campaigns deployed between 2 am-3 am EST found the highest engagement rates.

The study is based on campaigns conducted from January to March, 2012 via Yesmail Market Intelligence. The selection of brands focusses on 18-35 year-olds as of their digital communication interest.