Archive for the ‘digital footprint’ tag
You have to work just to stand still. And each additional device means additional monitoring and maintenance!
My biggest vulnerabilities? Whether laptops or smart phones, I tend to download and sample lots of software and apps, and then multitask frequently. That results in frequent performance issues that periodically force me to conduct wholesale purges of software, apps and files — even system resets.
While there’s no silver bullet for digital security and performance health, Trend Micro just released its Putting An End To Digital Clutter guide. It is part of Trend Micro’s Digital Joneses Study, a year-long project that brings together bloggers and their families (like mine) to “examine issues affecting individual members of a modern, digitally-connected household.”
Here are tips from the guide to boost performance and reduce security risks:
- Clear your browser’s cache.
- Uninstall programs you don’t even use.
- Regularly empty the Recycle Bin and Temporary Internet Files folder.
- Avoid hoarding programs.
- Regularly run software updates.
- Delete unwanted or unused apps to maximize limited computing power and memory.
- Maximize your mobile device’s security settings with strong passwords.
- Streamline your contact list.
- Check your privacy settings.
- Remove rogue apps from your account.
- Clean up your posts and photo albums.
- Use a third-party online back-up service to protect your data.
- Use different and strong passwords for different online services, and consider a password manager.
Lastly, while not included in the guide, one best practice that many disregard (and software and hardware vendors rarely surface) is to restart your digital devices periodically (daily, if use them daily). Performance tends to rapidly degrade on devices that remain on for extended periods, and restarting will recalibrate them. Restarting also activates software update cycles.
Download the guide and check out other resources for Internet security at Trend Micro’s family safety microsite.
Disclosure: The Digital Joneses Study will occasionally include loaned gadgets and licenses to various Trend Micro security softwares. I’m now testing out various Trend Micro softwares on an Asus ultrabook.
Marketers, educators, parents, it seems that almost anyone in the Generation X or Boomer demographic is scratching their heads trying to figure out Generation Y aka the Millennial. After all, it’s the first generation to seemingly possess digital prowess as part of their DNA. And, it’s the first generation to receive both a birth certificate and a social profile or presence upon delivery into this world.
A study published in 2011 by security company AVG and Research Now surveyed 2,200 mothers from around the world and found that 81% of children under the age of two currently have some type of digital footprint. 92% of U.S. children have an online presence created for them by the time they are 2 years old. In many cases, a digital presence is born before the child, with sonograms (23%) actively published and shared on social networks and blogs.
With every day that passes, Gen Y becomes far more important to the economy than we can realize. Yet the gap between how Gen Y communicates and connects and how businesses, educators, governments, et al. approach them is only widening. I often wonder whether or not we are simply trying to talk to ourselves in our approach when in reality, we are talking to strangers. This is important as without understanding what’s important to them and why, without learning their behavior or decision making cycles, or without empathy, we cannot reverse engineer nor create a meaningful and engaging journey. We cannot create bridges from where they are to us nor can we expect them to use them.
How well do you know Gen Y?
59% update their social status in class.
29% find love through Facebook while 33% are dumped via TXT or Wall posts (SRS) – abbreviation for seriously
Millennials watch TV with two or more electronic devices
Only 11% define having a lot of money as a definition of success
Gen-Y will form 75% of the workforce by 2025 and are actively shaping corporate culture and expectations.
Only 7% of Gen-Y works for a Fortune 500 company as startups dominate the workforce for this demographic. Gen-Y expects larger organizations to hear their voice and recognize their contributions…increasing the need for an intrapreneurial culture.
Millennials trust strangers over friends and family. They lean on UGC for purchases.
They are 3x as likely to follow a brand over a family member in social networks
66% will look up a store if they see a friend check-in
73% have earned and used virtual currency
Gen-Y believes that other consumers care more about their opinions than companies do – that’s why they share their opinions online.
Gen-Y’ers are more connected on Facebook than average users managing a social graph of 696 Facebook friends versus 140.
If knowledge is the key to enlightenment, then perception and imagination are windows to engagement and relevance. We can learn all we want about Millennials, but if we can’t translate that into meaning or substance, we will continue to miss opportunities to build lasting relationships.
The gap isn’t just widening because of the growing pervasiveness of Millennials in our economy. As I introduced in The End of Business as Usual, anyone who places increasing emphasis on technology as part of their daily routine, in many ways, their behavior mimics that of Millennials and as a result, they prove elusive or immune to traditional marketing and service. In the book, I refer to this class of consumer as “the Connected Customer” and their behavior is noticeably dissimilar to that of their traditional counterparts. The connected customer is the stranger you must get to know as in comparison to the customers of the past, this group is only growing and it’s traversing demographics. As such, the connected customer becomes what we can or should now refer to as Generation C where the “C” represents connectedness.
No longer can we blame it on the youth. We must blame, if anything, the disruption of technology. Nowadays, age ain’t nothing but a number. It is how people embrace technology, from social networks to smartphones to intelligent appliances, that contributes to the digital lifestyle that is now synonymous with Gen-C.
A recent study published by Nielsen brings Generation C into light. In just one image, we can begin to comprehend the disruption of digital revolution on society. Call it the social economy. Call it the mobile or the app economy. Call it the connected economy. Whatever we call it, this incredible transformation that we’re witnessing, is indeed nothing short of a digital revolution.
The Last 10 Years
274 million American have Internet Access, which is more than double that of 2000.
81 billion minutes spent on social networks and blogs
64% of all mobile phone time is spent on apps.
42% of tablet owners use them daily while watching TV.
For the first time, the numbers of laptops have surpassed desktops within TV homes.
Women Rule Gen-C
In 2009, I discovered that in social media, women rule. As you can see in Nielsen’s report, women too rule Gen-C. Specifically, they rule social media and online video and TV viewership. With smartphones, men and women are tied in adoption. With tablets however, men rule.
Gen-C, By the Numbers
If you compare Nielsen’s graphic with that of IBM’s research on Social CRM, you can appreciate the full dimension of Gen-C as every demographic, in their own way, is adopting disruptive technology. And, it’s only becoming greater.
Platforms for Digital Access
Every digital experience has its springboard. Whether it’s a PC, tablet, smartphone, and soon, a connected TV, our ability to every platform unifies the 5-C’s of engagement, create, connect, consume, communicate, and contribute.
274.2 million Americans have Internet access
169.6 million visit social networks and blogs
165.9 million people watch video on a PC
70% of time using tablets is spent while at home versus 30% on the go
Content accessed on tablets is 1) News at 39%, 2) Sports at 34%, and Books at 31%
On smartphones, 117.6 million visit the Internet
App usage peaks at 5 p.m. among adults
Smartphones are used by 44% of all mobile subscribers in the U.S.
Video Continues to Kill the Radio Star: Engagement is Cross Platform
Nielsen found that consumers increased their online video consumption by 7% from Q3 2010 to Q3 2011. As you can see in theimage below, online and mobile video consumption is significant.
Younger demographics watch less TV and watch video more online and on mobile devices.
With each generation, TV viewership rises with age.
Connected Customers are Multitaskers
Nielsen also shared the engagement habits and online activity of connected customers. As consumers watch a program, they are online with 1) 57% checking email, 2) 44% surfing the web, and 3) another 44% social networking.
When asked what they were doing while online during TV, some very interesting answers emerged. 29% looked up programming information related to the show. 19% looked up product information related to an ad. And, 16% looked up coupons or deals related to the ad.
The Top 5 Sites Visited While Watching TV
How Gen-C Spends their Connected Time
On PC’s and mobile devices, Gen-C is always on. Nielsen found that during October 2011, Youtube was the top destination for all online video content, accounting for nearly half (45%) of American’s total streaming time.
Social networking represents 21.3% of all time spent online using PCs.
Online gaming accounts for 7.7%
Email, in many ways still the largest social network in the world, represents 6.5%
55.8% of mobile phone time is spent in miscellaneous apps, with Angry Birds most likely accounting for a notable share of that time (just kidding).
Text messaging continues to test the limits of thumb dexterity and the ability to find new ways to abbreviate our vocabulary at 13.4%
Browser usage represents 11.1%
Social networking equals 5.5%
Interesting that email and IM are among the bottom of all mobile functions at 5.3%.
From e-commerce to Mobile Commerce
As Nielsen and so many other research reports herald, mobile commerce is influencing transactions and decisions. Mobile is just one of the many channels for emerging commerce including social, F-commerce, and more importantly, syndicated commerce. 29% of of mobile consumers use their phone for shopping-related activities and more than 50% visit daily deal sites daily.
Mobile shopping activities include:
38% compare prices online while in shopping in a store.
38% browse products through websites or apps.
32% read online reviews of products.
24% search for or use online coupons.
22% have purchased a product.
22% scan barcodes for product or price information.
18% use location-based services to find retail locations.
My favorite state isn’t related to what people are doing, but what they would do if businesses innovated in their approach to commerce.
27% of male and 22% of female consumers would use their mobile phone to make payments in restaurants and shops if they could.
This is an EmerGen-C
Connected customers or Gen-C is only becoming more pervasive in society and ultimately your economy. If you look back at the Gen-Y behavior list and replace the words “Millennial” or “Gen-Y” with “Connected Customer” or “Gen-C,” the similarities are uncanny. Now’s the time to recognize how your customer landscape is shifting and to what extent traditional and connected consumers discover and make decisions differently. The customer journey is far more complex than ever before, where new touchpoints not only emerge, they introduce a new customer journey.
With connected customers, decision making is no longer signified by a simple funnel, nor can business models support decision making before, during, and post transaction across these distributed, but connected platforms. This is a time for augmented engagement strategies to cater to different types of customers differently not only based on behavior, but also based on their expectations, needs, and also the platform they use to connect, communicate, and make decisions.
Ruth Bastedo is Director and Group Head, Client Strategy and Innovation at Social Media Group. Follow @rutbas
These days, it’s hard to know whether you are presenting your “personal” or “professional” face to the world. As an example, I recently joined Pinterest. I’m sure you’ve heard of it. I was faced with a bit of a dilemma though, as an alarmingly large number of my business contacts started to “follow” me, I had to ask myself: do all these people really need to know that I actually really love the kettle green “Aga” stove? This, is the totally fabulous stove:
Not to everyone’s taste, I grant you. Yet, I love this stove so much, that I compromised and “liked” it, but did not “repin” it. I’ve only actually re-pinned a couple of things so far… but the process did get me to thinking, if you were selling me a B2B service online, say software or consulting services, would it help you to know that I was the type of person to really groove on green stoves? I happen to already own a blue version of the Le Creuset kettle sitting on said stove. Have had it for 10 years. If I posted that information, would that help?
When I did a talk on the B2B vs B2C marketing topic at Social Media Marketing a few weeks ago, I did some musing on this topic. As marketers, we are going to be in a position soon where we have access to unprecedented amounts of information about our target customers. As this information becomes more available to us it opens whole new doors to create increasingly personalized messages, offers and communications based on disparate pieces of knowledge, readily available with a little digging and the right tool set.
What are the implications of this?
The traditional differences between B2B and B2C Communications have typically looked like this:
While these differences are still very valid, I have to wonder if we’re moving into new territory. The world becomes a funny place, when we consult a variety of user reviews, professional reviews, social networks and blogs to buy either a funky green stove or a new piece of software for our business.
Observationally, I can see that the process of “making a decision” is starting to look remarkably similar, whether that decision is oriented to a business product, or consumer product.
The commonality is becoming the customer’s decision journey, especially in an online environment. The fact is the “customer” is increasingly becoming an individual person. The smart marketer, will start marketing to that person, reaching out to him or her in accordance with the individual’s unique worldview, tastes, interests, life stage, peer group, background and life experiences. The B2B and the B2C approaches to customers as people, actually start to merge.
As marketers, our job becomes pretty simple in some ways. We need to reach out to our customers at key points in their decision journey. We need to really work to understand where our content, offers and experiences can add value, build loyalty and trust, and anchor the customer to the product and/or brand experience.
I encourage you to check out the deck below for some pretty interesting examples of emerging models for “Customer Decision Journeys”. Any of us in the digital communications industry can start to see that there are a plethora of tools, platforms and mechanisms to reach our customers at the touch points that matter most. The big question for all of us will be, what kind of content are we going to provide to each particular customer, so that it is relevant, valuable and adds something to their noisy, and over saturated digital lives.
I bet a lot of people who also “liked” the green Aga stove on Pinterest at some point in their careers have been in a position to buy some kind of software product. You just have to wonder if “green stove” people buy different types of software than “stainless steel stove people”… maybe yes, maybe no, but it’s an interesting question, and one worthy of consideration.
The internet has made it easier than ever to spread the word about your company. The problem is, what people say isn’t always positive.
As McDonalds discovered recently, you can’t control your message with a social media campaign. Disgruntled customers used the #mcdstories hashtag to share their worst experiences with the fast food giant. And many graduates have found their “digital footprint” comes back to haunt them when it comes to finding a job.
Whether you’re a huge multinational or a small start-up, your brand is one of your most valuable assets. There’s no doubt that more and more customers turn to the internet to find out about a company — or let off steam about poor service. A recent survey by Weber Shandwick concluded that today’s “nowhere-to-hide world” has caused massive shifts in the importance of online reputations.
Monitoring your reputation becomes even trickier when marketing across different languages. It’s hard to keep track of who is saying what about your company if you don’t understand what they’re saying. And it can take only a few negative blog posts or tweets to seriously dent your brand’s image.
That’s not to say it’s impossible to monitor brand image. With a little background knowledge and the right tools, you can help ensure that people are talking about your business for the right reasons.
Use free tools
There are a number of useful tools that can help you track mentions of your brand name. One of the simplest is Google Alerts, which informs you through email or RSS feed every time your selected words appear in its search results. You can choose the frequency of alerts and the language from a growing selection.
There are countless internet forums where consumers can sound off about good or bad experiences. Fortunately, you don’t have to spend hours trawling them. Services such as Boardtrack and Boardreader can monitor when your brand name or other keywords appear in these forums. Other tools, such as Technorati and BlogPulse, monitor blogs and their content.
Know your search engines
Google might be dominant worldwide, but it’s not the market leader in every country. If your company has an online presence in China, you’ll need to keep track of Baidu, while Yahoo is still the most popular choice in Japan.
Speak your customers’ languages
Of course, there’s no point tracking mentions of your brand if you’ve no idea what they’re talking about. Free translation tools, such as Google Translate, are good ways of understanding the gist of comments, as well as cutting costs. But when it comes to responding to criticism, it’s best to employ native-speaking professional translators to ensure responses are word perfect.
Be a social media success
Marketing expert Pete Blackshaw titled his book “Satisfied Customers Tell Three Friends; Angry Customers Tell 3,000,” and this isn’t wide off the mark. Social media has made it easier than ever for people to share their experiences with hundreds, or even thousands, of contacts.
So, it’s not surprising that most multinational companies take comments on Facebook, Twitter, and other networks very seriously. It’s important to take a proactive approach and respond to comments quickly, whether they’re positive or negative.
If you’re serious about your multilingual marketing, you’ve probably already got separate social media accounts for different countries. Keeping track of them can be time consuming, so employing local social media managers to update them and produce timely responses is a good idea.
As with search engines, don’t forget that different social networks are popular in different countries. If you have a presence in Japan, then keep up with the gossip on Mixi, while South Korean users tend to prefer Cyworld.
Encourage online reviews, and respond to them
Customers increasingly search for online reviews, whether they’re choosing a movie to watch, or a new car. Encouraging reviews is a good way to build up your reputation. You could even offer rewards or prizes for reviews on your website. But make sure you treat all reviewers equally, including critical ones.
If you do find negative reviews, respond calmly and politely in the same language. Correct any factual errors, and explain what your company is doing to improve its service. The quicker you respond, the easier it is to repair the damage.
Responding also shows you listen to your readers or customers. But don’t let a conversation drag on. Ask persistent critics for a private email address to discuss it out of public view.
On Twitter? Follow iMedia Connection at @iMediaTweet.
“Multilingual translation on-line“ image via Shutterstock.
When I was in the retail business, I had a regional manager once ask me how my sales of “blank wall space” and rental of the “vacant carpet squares” were going?
I raised my eyebrows and waited for the lesson to be delivered. I didn’t have to wait long:
“I love white space as much as the next person,” he said. “But we’re not in advertising. This is retail. Floor space and Wall space? That’s for our inventory. Keep ‘em full, clean, and looking good. Move a few things around once in awhile. We can do quantity and quality at the same time.”
He wanted customers who visited to always be thinking:
- Lots of Selection
- I Can Always Find Something Good Here
- My Friends Should See This
- I Should Come Here More
As you look at your individual content pieces – are they easy to read? Are you using eye rests in your posts? Or do they look like a sales rack with everything just piled on top of each other?
Your blog, your Twitter stream, your Facebook Timeline? That’s where you display your online inventory – your digital footprint.
We can do quantity and quality at the same time.
Today’s guest post is written by Nic Cartwright.
Before you get too far into this post, make sure you have read the excellent series on The Five Steps in Social Media Excellence here on Spin Sucks.
Once you have done that, onwards soldiers….
You’ve found the right tools to maximize your listening experience, you’ve spent some time assessing the noise you are hearing (and hopefully by now it is not noise, but relevant, magical, business improving customer ‘sounds’), you’ve bought a Flip Camera and chosen this as a neat way to engage with your audience, and now you are busy at your laptop measuring how effective all this effort has been.
Phew…. you have been busy little bees.
If only life were that easy.
I am not a PR expert, although I have spent a fair amount of time trying to generate PR and build relationships with customers, the media, and sponsors.
Creating a digital platform has never been in my job description. However, I have always seen the power of technology, and I love it. In fact, some of you may have seen the digital footprint I created as part of my strategy to land a new job.
I would not put myself forward to lecture anyone on how to develop a successful social media/PR campaign; certainly not on the first four fields of expertise that Spin Sucks has shown us in this series. But when it came to the final fifth step, I was happy to step up to the plate.
Why? Well, the four steps Gini Dietrich has laid out to achieve your social media nirvana could just as equally be applied to life itself – and whilst I am no life expert either – I am happy to argue the case that I have had lots of life lessons (40 years, 40 countries, and plenty of ups and downs).
The final step is the most important
You have followed the first four steps religiously. You learned some pretty full-on new tech skills in the process, yet you are not getting the results you wanted. What the what? It could be a myriad of things; you heard wrong, you assessed wrong, your engagement was wrong, or you ruler wasn’t working (come on work it out people – we are measuring after all!!).
It’s time to refine and improve. Tweak what you are doing. Start again if need be. But refinement will surely lead to better results (refinement does not mean putting on an English accent and going for long whimsical walks in the country). There are not so many tools available in this field (though you could find plenty of consultants to do it for you!!) – it’s more about experience, about intuition, about working harder and harder to get the results you want.
As I stand now, about to embark on a great new adventure (yep – I got a job in the Middle East, and it’s bound to be an adventure), the lesson I go back to most as I look at my life, my work, and my family is a simple one.
Life – and social media – are about growth. They are about improving. You may not always get the results you want, but each and every day is an opportunity to learn new skills, to educate yourself and to educate those around you. Once you have completed what you had set out to do, remember, refine and improve.
Thank you for listening and thank you for the opportunity, Gini.
Nic Cartwright, British born and bred, has been leading three separate sports teams in the U.K. during the past 10 years. He just landed in Oman in the Middle East as the commercial director for the Oman Football Association (UK not US). He recently relocated with his beautiful American wife Steph and cute little dog Wolverine. He blogs here focusing on issues that senior execs face in sports.
Social media can amplify your personal brand, but the presence itself cannot be a substitute for a personal brand. ~ Rajesh Setty Personal branding is a sizzling hot topic. However, some say personal branding is little more than a Kimbaya campfire “feel good” song. Other people, like my pal Geoff Livingston, take an even strong position and believe personal branding is contrived and fake. However, in a world where information about you and how you present yourself is as easy to find as a mouse click, your online presence is an important aspect of your “resume.” Whether you call it your digital footprint, online identity or personal brand, the fact remains potential and current employers, clients, colleauges and co-workers have more pieces of the puzzle to base their perceptions about you personally and your professional capabilities. As we in marketing well know .. perceptions impact purchase and loyalty (job offers, promotions, project opportunities, relationships). A few weeks ago I had the honor to speak at Possible Woman, a conference created by an innovative and creative women who has a strong personal brand herself — Linda Wind. My topic was using social media to put your best foot forward. To prep for the talk, I reached out to a few women, who hold corporate jobs and are using social media to build and promote their personal brands. Their responses were so rich with tips and information that it makes sense to turn this into a series. Meet the women who graciously…