iKnow – Let’s foresee the future

Pin It

We all want to know how the future looks like? What are key trends? What is the next bid thing in technology or our industry? The challenge is… How can the future be foreseen? Well, maybe there is a way if collaboration succeeds as the new imperative of humanity…

A new European research project by the EU Commission is challenging the unforeseeable future. The platform iKnow Futures aims at interconnection knowledge via an „innovation, foresight and horizont scanning system“. And ideally it will help companies, societies, political systems, science but also individuals to identify upcoming risks and dangers as well as potential opportunities long before the next economical crisis, the next virus, or the next weather desaster.

The platform is meant to give insights in new tools and technologies which could change the future. It displays latests projects and research which could foresee trends in science. And it shows first signals via „weak signs“ when there is some danger, threat or risk on the horizon that might affect a country, a county or a just some cities that already can be made out as critical.

The long-term EU project collects insights in academic research and collects data to make the world easier for interpretation and economical planning. Whether this is a new form of common knowledge that might revolutionize the world’s approach to common intelligence needs to be seen. Nevertheless, everyone of us can participate and help to make this place a better world with less unpleasant surprises.

Spot On!
Collaboration for a better world sounds somehow fantastic, and the project is definitely deserves a closer look. Imagine someone could have predicted 9/11 attacks with a Wild Card? And what if they become Weak Signals? Would this have saved the world from a nightmare, and would this have changed the ecosystem of planes and traines? How could collaboration platforms become the next „chaos prevention radar“?

PS: And let’s hope Apple won’t try to claim and aim for the name…

Study: Web economy expected to double in G20 by 2016

Pin It

We all know that the web economy is exploding at the moment in terms of activity and users. In the next four years the value of the web is expected to achieve a valuation sum growing from 2.7 to 4,2 trillion pounds. This means that the value of the web economy in the G20 countries is nearly going to double in the next four years.

The global web user base is expected to increase foe 1,9 to 3 million users by 2016 – almost half the world’s current population. All these findings are based on a new report commissioned by the Boston Consulting Group. Still, the report also states that there is at present no standard way of measuring the parts of web economy that is ‚digital‘.

Boston sees the growth in the evolution of the mobile web access as 80% are assumed to access the web via smart mobile phones. Thinking back to 2010, which is just about two years back, mobile internet access accounted for just over 4% of the G20 economies. The study makers claim that each household has an approximate valuation of 2,000 pounds worth of purchases online before buying.

Some more key conclusions from the study…



– Digital transformation is key for companies. Companies have to build their digital assets and reduce the digital liabilities that limit their ability to tap rich opportunities. People, processes, and organizational structures need to change and adapt them to the digital world.

– IBM forecasts 1 trillion devices to be connected to the Internet by 2015. This has an effect on the ways companies interact with customers and run their supply chains but also how traditional industries have to build their business.



- Companies such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google shape the Internet, in China this might be Baidu and Tencent or in Russia Yandex.

– The power of digital experience goes far more local in terms of impact on everyday life, reflecting economic, political, national characteristics and social influences specific to individual countries.

– The “Millennials” have different expectations as employees, consumers, and citizens. TheArab Spring protests and grass-roots “occupy” movements in the West are the most visible manifestations of the power of the Millennials to shape society and commerce.

Spot On!
Seeing the rapid economical and market changes, the intensity of competition will improve and increase. Companies and brands will need to plan more flexible in terms of their strategic approaches how to reach clients than in earlier years when long-term planning cycles were the common status. Today, it will be important to create an adaptive strategy planing and restructuring process.

PS. A challenge might be if evangelist entrepreneuers like this guy spread market distraction and confusion….

Study: In-car internet to become „the norm“

Pin It

Never will I forget the day some time between 2001 and 2002 when I went to the BMW pavilion exhibition in Munich to get an understanding of what „Connected Drive“ means. Those days, even the people in the pavilion could not help us, and it took BMW three days to give us some proper feedback on this term via telephone. Today, the term is clearly defined as driving with internet access which enables all sorts of connected infotainment, and if you want to know more about it, you can get plenty of information here.

Every day today, people are sitting in their cars, grapping their smartphones while waiting at traffic lights – although a great Facebook page tells us not „Text-and-Drive“. The future will be different though…

According to the world’s top car bosses, in-car internet access is close to becoming reality. A recent survey by KPMG called „Global Automotive Executive Survey 2011“ shows that speech recognition and internet connection with Wifi and 3G will become the norm in the future.

The results of the study state that 37% of the 200 responding car executives see „infotainment“ to be almost as important as car safety. It makes clear that over the next five years, car buyers will see in-car gadgets provided by the big tech firms like Apple, Google or Microsoft.

The new Toyota Avensis commercial in Germany features in-car texting and internet.

Intel already announced some collaboration with Toyota at the end of last year. Intel forecasts that the connected car is the fastest growing technological device following smartphones and tablets.

According to Reuters, Mercedes-Benz USA is bringing Facebook to its cars with the new in-vehicle telematics system that will be unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week. It allows drivers to access Facebook on the road. However it is not exactly the same as using the social network on a personal computer or a smartphone. „The version of Facebook offered in Daimler AG’s Mercedes is stripped down to a limited set of features, specially designed for drivers and centered around the locations of friends and businesses.“ Audi’s A7 series already offers a built-in 3G wireless which shall be extended to other new models.

Spot On!
Car manufacturers will look out for cooperation opportunities with IT companies as well as telecoms and the music industry. It will be interesting to see how much the in-car technologies will evolve and develop in combination with the Hybrid technology that will get the main investment according to 53% of the car execs. Apart from that 57% see speech recognition and built-in navigation as important product issues for consumers in the future. Just imagine you can send your tweet, write a blogpost or a Google+ status update without taking your eyes from the streets. If speech recognition performs, a lot of the dangerous texting and driving could end. Although it will take some time for people to adapt to the nex technology.

Speech-recognition apps – a step into the mobile future?

Pin It

In an interview for Bloomberg Television’s „Bloomberg West,“ Gary Morgenthaler, a general partner at Morgenthaler Partners, speaks with Emily Chang about Apple Inc.’s potential strategy for speech-recognition applications. With the company’s purchase of Siri Inc. in 2010, Apple gained technology leadership that lets users search the Web by talking to their phones.

Sometimes I am asking myself if we are getting sucked into the opportunities of mobile (and Apple…) technology, or if people will move away from such „extreme“ usage of technological progress. Or will it happen as it is Apple, or shall we better say Steve Jobs, who is in the driver’s seat saying: „It just works.“

Would be interesting to see how you, the social and mobile advanced users, if Apple is just catching up on an old trend or evolving the technology to make it market-ready…finally for the normal consumer…?!

Study: For Boomers Optimism and Social Conscience of brands is key

Pin It

Marko Greitschus / pixelio.de

Are Boomers trying to be younger than they are? Are they just identifying themselves from a brand perspective with a more youthful mindset? Are they buying the latest product trends of brands? A recent study conducted by WPP’s The Geppetto Group states that adults -especially Baby Boomers- are seeking brands that mirror an optimistic feeling back to them. So in some way the study suggests that Boomers have a more sustainable perspective when buying brands.

The survey polled 200 men and women (35 – 64) to find out what drives this audience towards certain brands and how this might affect the purchasing decision process. The message is: We don’t forget those brands we had when we were young. Our personalities are closely connected with these brands – especially if these brands were associated with positive messages.

„Marketers need to ask themselves if they’re missing the boat when it comes to Boomers. Are they offering them optimism and social conscience, and are they identifying with inherent qualities of their youths? Think of the impact that kind of thinking could have for sports retailers or restaurant chains for instance.“ Julie Halpin, Founder and CEO, The Geppetto Group

The study sums up three major findings that are important to know for marketers…

1. 66% of adults are looking for brands that express their personality

For the GenXers and Boomers technology brands express what their personality stands for. Especially if the brands are going hand-in-hand with expressing youthful qualities. Brands like Apple, Dell, Sony and HP were good reflections of their inner selves. And also Levi Jeans are still popular for them, not so much fashion brands like Diesel or Seven for all Mankind.

2. 57% of adults are challenging brands to surprise and delight them

The study finds that Boomers get exhited about brands that for younger generation might come along as boring. For Boomers brands like Swiffer, Keurig and Under Gear can be surprising again, the study reads. On this point I would have loved to get a clearer picture of how the argumentation

3. Optimism and (corporate) social ethics are important for Boomers

Are these values becoming more and more important, the more people experience in life? Is this because you think more about life, the older you get? The study states that brands that incorporate optimism and social responsibility in their messaging score 12-13 points higher for Boomers than for the Gen Xers.

Spot On!
Buying brands people always want to make a statement about their personality. Some to bolster their identity, some to define their personality – some to show off. Brands play a massive role in the process of self-definition in our global value system. If Boomers purchase products we used to think that trust and reliability plays a big role in the purchase process. The study now illustrates that the messages the „In“ brands spread out, don’t necessarily reach the Boomers that are more aligned with the brands of the past, and might be embracing optimistic messaging than just running after the „latest and greatest“ of the younger generation. For me it also makes clear that the value system of brands needs to be reviewed.

News Update – Best of the Day

Pin It

A good explanation why Apple often wins against competitors. Just see how they behave. Sure, no one of their competitors will comment here…

A nice copy of the Facebook referential advertising idea? Google +1 comes in late but follows the line of an old guest post I wrote a while ago on Mediamind blog (formerly Eyeblaster)…

A great commercial idea from Mercedes. The Sprinter applies for a job…

News Update – Best of the Day

Pin It

Do bank customers want ads in their checking accounts? Whether or not we like it, banks think about ways for new monetization opportunities but also try to strengthen loyalty programs of other companies. The big alignment of the industry and the end of the plastic loyalty card? Banks just ad links to the last transaction and you get the voucher for some benefit at the next check-in.

Apple released some numbers that every iPhone user has approximately 60 apps on their device which sums up in 10 Billion app downloads from their store. It took Apple 31 month compared to 67 month to sell the same amount of iTunes songs.

In their latest commercial, MINI battles vs. five-ton monster truck. Can a monster truck jump really clear the whole MINI family becomes the question? And just watch the feelings and what happens to those who watch the challenge. Can love be described better?

Nielsen study: iPad users open for ads

Pin It

When the the iPad certainly was introduced by Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs it was said to be „a truly magical and revolutionary product.“ This week I have bought an iPad myself and have tried to understand what the tablet is capable as a mobile business device. I cannot really say it failed. And a new study by Nielsen asking 5.000 mobile users shows us how the iPad is delivering businesses from the perspective of a new ad platform.

The Nielsen findings from their new „Connected Devices Playbook“ suggest that the iPad owners are more open and responsive to advertising than mobile users of other devices – even those of the iPhone. The study shows that iPad users are more likely to buy products after being introduced to ads. And 60% of the respondents of users across the iPad, iPhone and all other connected devices responded they were „OK with advertising if it means I can access content for free.“

The magic formula for making ads for iPad users effective are interactive features: 45% of iPad owners said they were more likely to click on ads that included multimedia than 26% of iPhone subscribers and 27% of other connected device owners. Isn’t this perfect news for the launch of Apple’s iAd platform?

What makes marketers even more happy is that iPad users indicate that they buy a product via their mobile device because of an ad. 24% of iPad users made an in-store purchase compared to 10% of those who use other devices. It seems that the iPad and other mobile devices might offer a helping hand as a revenue driver to all retailers or shop-owners. Nevertheless, we might ask the question whether this is as of the new product and the hype around it, or if this will last in the future. The final question could be how Apple will change their single app sales strategy to make the use of the iPad more cost-friendly for users.

So, who is the typical iPad user? The Nielsen study says they tend to be younger and more male than users of other devices like users of the Acer Aspire One, the Kindle, the iPhone, iPod touch or the Sony PlayStation Portable. 65% of iPad users were male and under the age of 35.

Spot On!
Sometimes it is funny when you read these studies and remember your own shopping experience. Some weeks ago, when the iPad was not even available I remember a 45 year old posh women rushing into the Apple shop. She did not even realize that the sales guy next to me was explaining the benefits of an iPad to me. She just asked when the iPad will be available, got her answer and rushed out with the same urgency she came in. The sales guy was shaking his head that day, saying some of our clients are weird. When you think about how eager she was to buy the product, I can understand that advertising is still effective… not only on an iPad.

News Update – Best of the Day

Pin It

Just some weeks ago, I have been talking about the idea of replacing loyalty cards by social networking customer service to drive customer engagement. Now, the New York Times has extended the idea by the integration of location-based advertising using Foursquare… and of course replacing loyalty cards by social networks activity and mobile apps. The idea seems to be moving from trend to standard…

Often the question comes up which brands are the most valuable in the world. Millward Brown’s Optimor BrandZ Top100 Most Valuable Global Brands report gives us some insight. The key findings…

– Google is the most valuable global brand worth $114 billion (2nd is IBM with $86 billion, 3rd Apple with $83 billion, Microsoft was fourth with $76 billion.
– Social Media is a winner: Facebook has a brand value of $5.5 billion. Use of social media was a key trend across many of the successful brands this year, i.e. HSBC’s Expat Explorer online community.
– Strong brands such as Samsung (80% growth in brand value) and Starbucks (17% increase) are evidence that businesses with strong brands recover from adversity faster.

Heineken commercials know how to dive into the hearts of their main target group. „Men with talents“ is another fantastic example after their „walk in fridge“ idea… Sorry ladies, but we man love it!

News Update – Best of the Day

Pin It

Today, we keep this links list as short as possible…

Adam Singer tells us how to architect a social web marketing and PR strategy.

Ellen Davis interviewed Julie Bornstein (Senior Vice President, Sephora) about the ROI of social media – an interesting case study of a successful retail brand.

The new Apple iPad commercial shows all the features of the product in 30 seconds and with it the future of „infotainment“ – and why it is better than Kindle and the likes.

« Vorherige SeiteNächste Seite »