Tagged in: digital

Wearable_Technology1

The power of wearables: are they helping us?

Today each and every one of us has some tech assistance gadget. mini-wereablesWhether it is a Google glass, a Garmin, or Apple watch, or GPS running or sleeping bracelet, we’re wearing technology. And out of all technology items, wearable gadgets are the ones to have the most intimate connection to people, since they are worn or carried along with during day or night.

Internet of Things at its finest

It might just be true that the wearable technology has become the best and probably the greatest applications of the Internet of Things. And they’re not just being the next frontier to the human-tech route. The consumption of such wearable gadgets in areas as exercise, science, lifestyle, learning, and everyday living is prevalent and it’s here. Consumers every day and everywhere track and monitor their fitness, exercise, health, learning and sleeping progress in previously unimaginative and impossible ways. Now a simple electronic band could do a job of so many people.

wearable_healthcare-ftTransformation of the way we live

The wearable tech gadgets are bringing enormous power to the wearer’s wrist or hand or belt. Brands are producing various types of devices for many reasonable and even unreasonable causes. And most importantly, they are even starting. The market is still not oversaturated and the people are still in need of electrical tracker or even reminder so they are stepping the thin line of being addictive of them. Wearable tech line style illustrationBecause we couldn’t live without tactical heartbeat monitor, right? Or this new smart shirt that warns you when you need to sit up straight.

Whether it is a smart thermometer to monitor a child’s fever, or an action camera designed for kids and parents that use artificial intelligence to automatically pick out the best photos, or an intelligent smart ring that is functional in so many ways but it also matches your new purse. No matter you need to be measuring your calorie intake, your heart rate or the quality of your sleep – there is a tiny, elegant wereable for that. And so far they are making people’s lives way easier, or they are making people enormously lazy and not thinking at all.

What will the future be like?

Forbes has recently assumed that the wearables market will reach $14 billion by the end of this year only. While Business Insider’s premium research service BI Intelligence expects the wearables market to grow up to 162.9 million units by the end of 2020.

It is a fast growing market led by the healthcare sector, images (1)being one of the top facilitators of the rising trends. However, the fitness trackers will also remain to be leading in consumer case. People mostly consume these pieces of technology to record their exercise and health statistics and progress. Among others besides the hospitals are the insurance, pharmaceutical and med-tech companies, utilizing these devices.

And as the potential of wearing technology rises, the questions don’t stop to pop. Will the manufacturers ensure precise and correct data, this being especially important into the healthcare sector and hospitals? Will the consumers receive accurate and detailed progress reports? Where is all that data stored and how are users protecting their privacy?

Do we stop to think?

As we think that wearables are making our lives easier, helping us in many spheres and providing with all this statistical data about our everyday routines, are these devices truly transformative? Will an average consumer rely truly on a little piece of technology and wear it 24 hours a day so they can have all their activities monitored? Will we be wearing these gadgets out of need, dependence and habit or purely of fashion? Are we that much hooked on technology? Will we abandon the old-fashion medical check one a year? And will the wearables ultimately take over or totally wipe out some existing jobs?

Yes, we are truly excited to see where the future will take us. But as we do so, don’t get fully dependable out on anything, not even on Siri and especially not on a wearable. No watch is smarter than you, right? :)

wearables11

internet-connectivity-vs-human-connectivity

Does internet connectivity matter more than human connectivity?

World’s rapid move towards omnipresent connectivity is constantly changing how and where people go and what they do. The internet connectivity has been and continues to be changing the way how people associate, gather and share information and consume media and information. Recent researches show that the Internet will be so approachable and effortless that will become indispensable part of human lives, much like water or electricity.

Living the artificial intelligence

It’s no surprise that wearable and embedded computing together with mobile are tied together with the Internet of Things. People have started to loop into the artificial intelligence-improved and cloud-based storage and sharing of information. All the “Augmented reality” inventions, home and living improvements and improvements of people’s real-lives are somehow helping people’s efficiency, consumption, savings… It is true that AI innovations help us in home and security improvements, but can we stop to think whether we’ve stopped using our own intelligence and started to rely only on the artificial one? You can recall remembering at least 10 phone numbers, right? How about now? Or, just few years back we knew our driving directions. Now… well… we just ask Siri.

The thin line between Virtual Reality and Real Reality

vr-couple1Are we living the future as described in some top-notch Hollywood movie? We have our smartphones, smart TVs, smart watches, smart home appliances. And they are about to get even smarter. Virtual Reality is about to make a sufficient change into everyday living and become inevitable part of human being. And we’re not talking only in medical, educational and science purposes. We’re talking about entertainment, experiences and social pieces of everyday living. It’s a matter of years when people start going on concerts via their VR devices. It would be exactly like being there, only you’ll be at the comfort of your home, experience technology instead experience people. At some point people would use their VR devices for traveling digitally instead of visiting real places and real people. So, where would that take us?

How social can we get?

It is no more a matter of sharing experiences. social-media-istock27-crop-600x338It’s about experiencing new experiences. Digitally. The new dimension of being social is upon us, and this raises many questions. Will the technical intelligence surfeit make up for the deficiency of emotional intelligence? Are we about to abandon the concept of being together, being among people? Are we entirely changing our ability to connect other people?

Revolutionized human interactions

The next decade will be challenging in so many ways. It is true that the entire human interaction will be revolutionary changed. Technology will continue affecting 9f378aa578aa0d51c58c010942ef8963education, health, economy, work, politics, and entertainment. Most of the researchers believe the connectivity will be primarily positive. However, with every new innovation there is a new opportunity and possibility of change. And now the range is so wide and it is getting wider. Can we identify and foresee the future in terms of human connectivity? Can we identify potential areas of concern?

After all, we as humans are above the technology. We are the creators and we have the master-power of the technology. Or do we? Feel free to drop us a comment on tech predictions, AR, VR and innovative creations.

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAuOAAAAJGNhNmUwNzdmLWM1OTAtNGY1NC1hOTk2LWUxZDRkOGVkY2VjNw

E-commerce Marketing trends for 2017

Online shoppers are here to stay

It is already the fourth month of 2017. By now, the total number of internet users worldwide has reached 3.5 billion from which 40% have bought at least one thing online. Or in plain imagesnumbers, that means that at this moment there are more than 1.4 billion customers worldwide available to be attracted by the e-commerce players in the market. And those numbers are about to rise as marketers everywhere are doing everything they can to get the piece of the online shopping pie. As e-Commerce itself is rapidly growing, marketers are using all possible forms of marketing channels and techniques to stand up against the already large competition and get more customers to shop their brands. But this refining of the e-Commerce marketing is constantly making customers even harder to win.

It’s all about the user experience

As it grows, the market becomes more innovative increasingly technology friendly. With all those new means, like VR for example, not only that attract new customers, but they boost their engagement, creating an extraordinary user experiences. And customers really care about that.  Companies and brands working in line with behavioral trends and following the consumers instead the otherwise will easily succeed in their e-Commerce marketing planning. Knowing the customers, not only current but potential ones as well and integrating their behaviors into the planning will be beneficial for both sides. For example, knowing that nowadays 51% of Americans prefer online shopping rather than in-store — number that rises to 67% for Millennials and 56% for Gen Xers will help you in your further positioning if you’re delivering in the US market.

E-commerce-web-development

The megatrends in e-Commerce

Looking at the numbers, one can easily conclude that brands without online stores are doomed to disappear. Starting from the fact that 2017’s customers owns at least 3 devices – smartphone, tablet, and computer, they expect quick, easy, and, above all, user friendly online shopping experience. So make this your starting point in the planning. Brands will need to be both aware of and benefit from the latest trends in ecommerce. To make it easier, we’ve identified several e-Commerce trends for 2017 to be taken into consideration in order brands to ensure both online and in-store sales growth.

  1. Be mobile friendly and advertise on Mobile: If you own a site that is not responsible for mobile devices, you’re wrong on so many levels. They are convenient and accessible making the customers addicted to them. So, if your customer is constantly holding a device, the chances they indexwill shop from it are really high. Some researchers show that 88% of consumers who search for a type of local business on a mobile device call or go to that business within 24 hours. So, if you don’t own a responsive web site, you’ll be losing at least 70% of the visitors. True that mobile site doesn’t sound like a marketing tool, but if you think about advertising your products or services on Google or Social Medias, more than 0% of the traffic will be mobile device generated. PewInternet.org has researched the US population, concluding that two thirds have a mobile device and using it for the majority of their online searcher. 40% of the Americans abandon a slow loading website. While 74% of them return to mobile friendly websites, 67% were more likely to buy from a mobile friendly website. So, to conclude, making your website responsive, thus mobile friendly, will ultimately lead to more visits and necessarily to maximization of sales.

content-marketing

  1. Content Marketing: It’s 2017, customers already hate advertisements and over 200 million of them have installed an ad blocker. No one wants to be spammed anymore. So now what? You pull out that king card and win those customers with content. There are many companies that already sell thanks to content marketing. Communication with audience in all possible ways will both cost you lower and generate you 3x as many leads. It is simple – people love to be consuming content and creating interesting, relevant and catchy content will definitely increase your traffic and help you in sales growth.
  1. Listening to the customers and understanding their journey: Let’s face it: if one user has a bad experience on your website, he might never come back. Or even worse, a word-of-mouth campaign those customers bring can mean a big failure for a brand. This makes the user experience (UX) of your website now more important than ever. Following and understanding the customer journey by using Google analytics or any other analytics tool available should become top priority for any brand. No one should afford loopholes in their websites since they will lead to sales drops. As Brian Solls in his new book X: The experience when business meets design says: “Experiences are more important than products now. In fact, experiences are products.” So a smart thing to do would be to surf your website as if you were a customer. Shop like you would do on any other site. See what works well and what doesn’t and figure out a way to make the annoying stuff easier.
  1. Consume the technology, engage with VR and AR: From day to day harder it gets to become a market leader. The competition is fierce and overwhelming. So earlier you vrstart investing in the futuristic marketing, the sooner you’ll stand out from the competition. And by futuristic marketing, we mean investing in the “next big thing” which right now is the Virtual and Augmented reality. Take PokemonGo for example. It became a massive viral hit last year. And the total amount of active VR users is forecasted to reach 171 million by next year. So the time is now, take this advantage and improve the eCommerce experience with VR. Make your product virtually presented so the online shopper experiences them as he is in your physical store. Yes it is an expensive cutting-edge of technology. And yes, if you can afford it, go for it and immerse your customers with and VR experience.

 

  1. Take what your customers give you with User generated content: The idea of motivating your customers to generate content for you has been ongoing for a while now. users-social-media-contentBut is not as easy as it sounds. A brand should really stand out to have its customers speak instead. Being relevant, unique or even funny are among the attributes a brand should have to trigger conversation from its customers. And believed or not, user generated content id 20% more influential than any other media but much harder to have. Increasing the conversation should be among top of the planning list for eCommerce strategy for this year. Especially when 70% of consumers consider product and brand recommendations from their social circles trustworthy and 46% trust online reviews posted by other customers. In comparison, only 10% trust banner ads on websites. So, ask your customer to post images from your products, give them a hash tag, give them coupon or small rewards and increase the conversation for better sales.
  1. Invest in Review Marketing and Social feedback: And by invest, we mean try really, really hard about this. Today you’ll win a customer based on the reviews. It’s pure psychology. People like to be a part of the pact. They believe s recommendation they receive from a close member or someone they trust. So, the right thing to do now is to have a small incentive investment in your current customers in order to gain new ones. It will ultimately pay off. Numbers say that almost 63% of consumers are more likely to purchase from a site if it has product ratings and reviews from other customers. So if we haven’t convinced you yet, these numbers should.
  1. Hire a professional Influencer: Influencer Marketing can really help you increase your reach and ultimately your sales, if you do it right. And the right way to do it is by knowing and finding the right influencers. Whichever platform you choose (Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Snapchat or Instagram) they each have different influencers. And it is still human recommendation. Consider influencers as brand ambassadors. Have them say what you have to say instead of you and have them interact with a community that will eventually become your community. And if knowing that almost 74% of consumers use social media channels to make purchase decisions and the previously stated facts that they believe user recommendations over brand ones should motivate you enough. As soon as customers relate to your brand it will be much easier.

 

  1. Make your customers feel special with a Loyalty program: It is quite easy. Reward your current customers for their loyalty. Coupons or points for discounts on every purchase will make them really happy. At the same time it is quite a good trigger for other customers to become yours as well. Attract the “onetime shoppers”, intrigue the “browsing shoppers” and reward the “loyals” and you will definitely rise your online sales.

 

  1. Be everywhere. Use an Omni-Channel selling. You have an banner-building-b2b-omni-channel-commerce-platform2eCommerce site. Your online shop is seamless. But why restrict? Put your products everywhere, on all selling platforms such as Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Jet, etc. This may seem like a contrary-marketing for you but you are wrong again. Multichannel shoppers do shop more often and they do spend over 3 times more than single-channel shoppers.

 

Other important marketing channels to focus your eCommerce in 2017:

  • Wallet payments
  • Triggered emails
  • Better & Free Return Shipping
  • On-Site Personalization
  • Social Media And Google Search Buy Buttons
  • Marketing automation
  • Non-robo response
  • Video marketing
  • Data driven from SEO
multiscreen

Creating videos for the multiscreen world

Living the Screen Age

We are yet not aware how quickly the screens have taken over our lives. From an information tool, the screens have become a sole provider of not only information, but also entertainment, connectivity, communication, transactions, controlling, education and even friendship… Today, there is a different screen for every purpose and every need. And we spend hours gazing into them like in and endless pond of the unknown.

 “People have always loved watching screens. We have all felt the attraction. 00xp-screens-master768In early days of television, before we got a set of our own, I remember the fascination of televisions on display in store windows. Like everyone else, I’d stand on the street gazing in the magic of the moving images and feel the future had arrived.” – Kevin Roberts, CEO Worldwide Saatchi&Saatchi.

But what are we looking at? A better self? More useful information? Our ideal friends, products or services? And with this entire constant screen looking, now more than ever, the content, context and usage of all those screens with skill and creativity has become even bigger of a challenge.

The world revolving around multiscreen

The family of screens has grown multi-numerous. From Totem screens, to Television screen, Computers, Tablets, Laptops, Home theater screen, Smartphones, Gaming consoles, macbook-apple-imac-computer-39284Music players, Movie theatres, Billboard screens, In-flight screens, Car screens, ATM screens,  Security screens… We touch them, we tap them, pinch, zoom, swipe… We fully interact with each and every screen around us, drawing everything out from them.  They feel real, intimate, they deliver content and at the same time the screens are physical, likeable, they love to play. They have become our loyal companion who tells us stories, makes us connected and most of all, shows us we belong in this world.

“If you can’t deal with screen language, you aren’t literate. – John Seely Brown

Today all publishers, creators and storytellers are speaking the screen language. They are trying to convey the right content for the rights screen day-to-day. And delivering it foregoes knowing the audience, the screen evolvement and creating a superb story.

During this screen evolvement days, the sight, sound and motion have become the best formula for speaking the screen language. Or to put it simple – the video. Videos have become the ideal technique for telling stories. Having something to watch, that has visual content in motion, combined with audio is the absolute best way to deliver the on-screen story.  People urge excitement; they are passionate about music, they are attracted by color and motion. And when shaping all the ingredients into one contextually right product, you will easily deliver your message.

Are all screens equal?

Do they look and feel equal? No. Every single different platform has different viewing concepts. The media has dramatically evolved after the “digital” happened. multiscreenAll the new screens that emerge require more and different content. The divergence of screens comes in many different matters, whether is the size, the media, and the purpose which of course dictates the content itself.

Nowadays, as Smartphones has become the backbone of our daily media interactions. They have the highest number of user interactions per day, making the TV the boring screen. Nevertheless, in this digital era, even with this variety of screens, people try to expand even wider and create new media and new innovative ways of spreading their messages. So, not only have the screens evolved. The consumers themselves have also evolved. They’ve developed different consumer needs. They require different storytelling styles. Viewers no longer put up with unattractive content. They want to skip whatever bores them. And over the days, the viewers have become less tolerant to digital ads then TV ones. They skip ads or pay premium to have ads free content. The TV content is more often viewed on demand, meaning that the audience that seats passively in front of the TV is constantly lowering.

Can the same video be used in all screens?

The ultimate and most frequently asked question. Whether is an attempt for saving money or time, most of the clients would rather have the same video to be played on all platforms. Is that the right decision? Certainly and absolutely not. The single story creates stereotypes, closed perceptions and the multiscreen world is the utter contrary. Every platform expands to new wealth of possibilities and most importantly they create a unique, direct and emotional connection with the consumers. And not only the context but the duration is also of great importance in video content. As TV charges broadcasting per second and you should optimize your messaging based on the media budgets, the problem on the digital platforms is entirely different. No one watches video content longer than 15 seconds on social Medias. So another problem occurs. Telling your story right and telling it short.

storytelling-multiscreenThe power of storytelling

As Wittgenstein wrote, “The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.” Great stories are broad yet are easy to understand. Great stories touch us, they are contagious, connect with emotions. They have context, introduce us to great characters, teach us something new, something smart, and open us up to new worlds, especially to the world of our imagination. But all along, every story follows a simple idea: What happens next?

Emotion is what makes a story memorable and inspiring. Stories engage us, feed our curiosity, and make us want to consume more. And the storytelling is just that; creating an emotional experience and passionate commitment between the story and its viewer or the reader.

“There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.” – W. Somerset

In the past years the amount of information that is being communicated on daily basis has overwhelmed the traditional storytelling styles. But thanks to all the exploring possibilities, the new storytellers inquire new answers to the digital age. Their stories are built to overcome the information overload and be placed in the multiscreen as their home. Or as writer Barry Holstun Lopes have said “Everything is held together with stories. That is all that is holding us together, stories and compassion.”

The right video for every viewer

People like to do several things at the same time. Screen experience is really important to them especially when they spend most of their time holding one and receiving all the info from it. But people differently engage digital content. TV watchers are becoming the fading audience beaten by on-the-go generation that consumes as many messages as possible. So what would the right way to deliver the right video to the right viewer?

Emotion. No matter when, no matter what, the video should always have and create a certain emotion. This will further connect your customer to your brand. So, when doing a video-multiscreenvideo you should always ask yourself is your video enjoyable in all contexts? Does it create and emotional response? Does it have enjoyable yet engaging creative?  And believe it or not, the best way to achieve the emotion is with combination of audio and video. Never go mute. And if you do, always use subtitles. It is important your video works on mute. So put supers, eye-catching details. Your viewer should be attracted in the first 3 seconds, or he will continue scrolling on his home page. Another important thing in contextualizing is the video length. The video should never be it longer then is has to be. Attract the viewers in the first 3 seconds and finish your video in 15 to 20 seconds.  Be catchy, straightforward and use nice colors and motion. And be smart. Optimize your videos for all the devices you plan to use. Stretch them optimally on how people view it.  Think like you are in their mobile devices, tablets and their social medias. And last but not least, use smart branding. Show your brand, product or service in the manner of the platform you set the video for. Be a brand who thinks like its consumers, get close to them and give them exactly what they want.

SmartCity

Smart cities, are we living there?

IoT is changing the game

We are all digitalists. Modern citizens living in a modern, digitalized era. IoT-Smart-CityEvery day we wake up more connected and more productive thanks to the tools and devices out there helping us to have all the complex things in life done simpler. What was once the Internet is now The Internet of Things. All the digital solutions are now making life more endurable and enjoyable and goods more approachable. The Internet of things is the smooth switch to smart technologies, helping us to save energy, to improve our safety, and even improve our business. And the game is truly being changed since we’re starting to live in completely connected homes and the living is made so much simpler and easier thanks to Smart Cities.

Enhancing the quality of life

The sole purpose of connected-life premises is not only to have your friends online at all time, but to make life easier and people more self-aware, mindful and conscientious. smartCityThe new digital dimension enhances the quality of life. It helps people gather real-time information that can help and improve living in so many spheres. The intelligent solutions are helping in saving the environment by cutting energy use, lowering carbon emissions, reshaping and lowering waste production. The new digital platforms will help calculate the quantity of water drops we use thus saving the amount of water we spend. They will increase the security of each and every one of us. Smart solutions will reduce dangerous jobs for people, making them being operated more safely and much more effectively by autonomous and self-driving devices. The benefits will also emerge in the fields like medicine, architecture, economy, education and even entertainment, making our lives better by all means.

The cities of the future

We live in the same cities as before, now much more improved. The cities themselves are changing and adapting to this new digital dimension providing the citizens an easier and more comfortable life. All this thanks to the M2M technology that enables actions and information exchange of all networked devices without any human assistance. Urban environments are already experiencing the benefits of Intelligent lighting, the self-driving public transport, the Intelligent Traffic management. So how will our everyday life be better living in the smart city? Let’s have a common, yet not a pleasant scenario: if a gas leeks, SmartCitythe smart home sensors will be able to detect the change and notify the officials, who will be able to immediately locate the nearest available crew to be sent onsite. The automatic traffic lights will be adjusted so the field crew gets onsite quickly, while the digital signage could inform the other traffic participants of the situation and alert them on driving changes. The other residents of the building could be alerted immediately, they would be able to leave the site with the automatically set public transport, and they could also participate in further sharing of the information in order to have the problem fixed in the fastest and easiest possible way. It is a simple example of how smart city technology could help and make living more enduring and cities more adaptable to its communities and citizens.

smartcity

Smart City solutions

Smart City solutions are based on the critical points of living in big cities. And the Smart parking systems are among the best solutions because they notify the drivers when a free parking spot emerges and in big cities with a lot of vehicles, this will mean lowering the citizens’ time and the air polluting. Or in numbers, by lowering the average parking-search time from 15 to just 12 minutes will lower the CO2 emissions by 400 tones in cities with average 5 million people. Nowadays, most of the bigger cities have interconnected and using Intelligent transport systems. This helps in public transport coordination and providing real-time information. Smart taxis are helping the customers even now, enabling them to book a car with an application, while using their location to find their quickest ride available. smartcityAnother popular Smart City solution is the Traffic management. Having monitoring of all road systems and informing the drivers of their best route at any given time. The traffic management solutions will automatically manage the traffic lights and reduce overcrowding to the minimum. There are cities that are currently testing the systems of Smart grids. This solution will provide the necessary amount of electricity depending on the demand, maximizing the power efficiency. On the line of electricity saving, the Smart urban lighting will also reduce the energy waste by adjusting the intensity of the light depending on the people who are around or turning it down when nobody is on the street. In living the environmentally friendly lives, Smart containers and Waste management help people a lot. These solutions will increase the efficiency in waste collection leaving the cities cleaner. Smart Cities are cutting down the billboards, printed posters and delivering the information on the Digital-signage. All of the urban ads will now be tailored to each citizen personally helping the customers to see and buy things they like with app clicks from the signage. As technology grows bigger, the innovations become smarter providing help in all aspects. The future Smart city maintenance will help the citizens to communicate with city representatives through their smartphones making the city damages being repaired faster.  And all that, without any human assistance. Only technology solutions.

Masdar City in Abu Dhabi

There are few great examples of Smart Cities around the world and the 67cb5dfc24e7ccb676970e9c87fd91dfMasdar City in Abu Dhabi is one of them. Having relying only on solar and renewable energy sources, this city with its unique construction was created to be a sustainable and very friendly to pedestrians and cyclists. The construction itself, helps in maintaining a pleasant temperature and having a breeze push for a slight cooling effect. The buildings in Masdar assembled closely together to create streets and sidewalks shielded from the sun. Initially, the design of the cities banned cars and the transport is via public mass-transit and personal-rapid-transit (PRT) systems, onto the existing roads and railways.

Amsterdam Smart City

Another city that pushes itself to innovativity and smart solutions is Netherlands capital, Amsterdam. Over the years Amsterdam has become social, open and sustainable European1019-header-94793a6c02879bdbda21ff86a963b201-ASC_V2G_infographic_770.jpg pearl promoting IoT challenges, involving more than 100.000 Energy Neutral Homes, motivating and involving the residents and homeowners to develop cost effective and sustainable houses in their neighborhoods. They have already implemented the Smart Parking and the Smart Waste solution and over the years Amsterdam is known for the bike-friendly living and Smart Transport solutions, running on solar or renewable energy.

By now we all want to live in a city that is fully digital that offers smart solutions and helps us in delivering easy living. Unfortunately, for full implementation, we’ll have to wait a while, or move to a smarter place.