Leveraging analytics to see the whole story

Leveraging analytics to see the whole story

The race to unlock the potential of data is on. According to IDC, the volume of data created worldwide will increase tenfold by 2025. This means we will have even greater access to a wealth of information, enabling more powerful business insights than ever before. Most organisations already have metrics in place to understand their data. But many are merely scratching the surface and are yet to uncover true data-driven possibilities.

The idea of data creating business value is not new. Business leaders have been making decisions based on data reports for years. In today’s hyper-connected digital economy however, the ability to access data visualisation and intelligent analytics in real-time is vital to organisations looking to gain a competitive advantage. Data-driven enterprises that have access to information at their fingertips have been found to outperform their industry peers by up to 6%. For business leaders, data analytics and visualisation can make or break key conversations with potential investors, partners and shareholders.

What does the data-driven enterprise look like?

As with most enterprises, data resides across a broad ecosystem of sources. The enterprise that can leverage all data, irrespective of its source or location, will be best equipped to act on insights now and into the future.

Data-driven businesses provide a framework for users to see the whole story when it comes to data. They offer the ability for users to input and analyse all their data. Analysis is not limited to preconceived notions of how data should be structured. They recognise that it is often within combinations of seemingly disparate data that innovations occur in today’s digital era.

Data-driven possibilities

With most companies collecting vast amounts of data from their business operations, and the growth of publicly available data, the time is now to leverage data analytics to make better decisions and realise strategic goals. For example, e-commerce retailers, such as Lazada in South East Asia, are leveraging business intelligence to effectively compete against global online retail giants, optimise their supply chain, increase operational efficiency and better support merchant and…

Experts Identify 6 Emerging Influencer Marketing Trends


Influencer marketing has become an area of strategic importance for marketing departments, according to a white paper Traackr published Thursday.

B2B technology companies are aware of the trend, according to the paper’s coauthor, business consultant Mark Schaefer, but they lag in implementing influencer marketing programs.

Interviews with 10 marketing experts — including some who built influencer marketing programs at Microsoft, IBM and Samsung — suggest that influencer marketing requires a fundamental shift in the marketing department, noted Traackr CMO Kirk Crenshaw.

Companies have to rethink how to go to market, he said. They also must acquire new skills, reconfigure measurement methods, and relinquish at least partial control of the message.

Trust in the subject matter experts is critical.

6 Emerging Trends

Experts interviewed for the paper highlighted six industry trends that currently are shaping B2B influencer marketing:

  • emergence of micro-influencers and their role vis-a-vis macro-influencers;
  • importance of leading with purpose rather than resorting to promotion;
  • relationship between expert voices and the brand voice;
  • need to move from campaign-driven activities to always-on engagement;
  • demolition of silos in favor of cross-functional collaboration; and
  • evolution of measurement from reach to outcomes.

Micro-Influencers and Macro-Influencers

Macro-influencers are celebrity endorsers — actors, retired politicians, YouTube and social media celebrities, for instance.

Micro-influencers, on the other hand, are individuals who work in their category or are truly knowledgeable, passionate and authentic. They are seen as a trusted source for buy recommendations.

Micro-influencers have more than 22 times more conversations each week than average consumers regarding recommendations on what to buy, based on…

New 3-D display takes the eye fatigue out of virtual reality

Click to enlarge

The new display creates a 3-D image using optical mapping. An OLED screen is divided into four subpanels that each create a 2-D picture. The spatial multiplexing unit (SMU) shifted each of these images to different depths while aligning the centers of all the images with the viewing axis. Through the eyepiece, each image appears to be at different depth.

There is a great deal of excitement around virtual reality (VR) headsets that display a computer-simulated world and augmented reality (AR) glasses that overlay computer-generated elements with the real world. Although AR and VR devices are starting to hit the market, they remain mostly a novelty because eye fatigue makes them uncomfortable to use for extended periods. A new type of 3D display could solve this long-standing problem by greatly improving the viewing comfort of these wearable devices.

“We want to replace currently used AR and VR optical display modules with our 3D display to get rid of eye fatigue problems,” said Liang Gao, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “Our method could lead to a new generation of 3D displays that can be integrated into any type of AR glasses or VR headset.”

Gao and Wei Cui report their new optical mapping 3D display in The Optical Society (OSA) journal Optics Letters. Measuring only 1 x 2 inches, the new display module increases viewing comfort by producing depth cues that are perceived in much the same way we see depth in the real-world.

Overcoming eye fatigue

Today’s VR headsets and AR glasses present two 2D images in a way that cues the viewer’s brain to combine the images into the impression of a 3D scene. This type of stereoscopic display causes what is known as a vergence-accommodation conflict, which over time makes it harder for the viewer to fuse the images and causes discomfort and eye fatigue.

The new display presents actual 3D images using an approach called optical mapping. This is done by dividing a digital display into subpanels that each create a 2D picture. The subpanel images are shifted to different depths while the centers of all the images are aligned with one…

S.O.S. Time For CEOs: Why Are Some Allowed To Stay And Others Forced To Go?

WASHINGTON, DC – JANUARY 19: Uber CEO Travis Kalanick speaks at the Generation Now Inaugural Youth Ball hosted by OurTime.org on January 19, 2013 in Washington, United States. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images for OurTime.org)

With the news of Travis Kalanick stepping down as CEO of Uberafter what seemed to be a dramatic meeting with investors, the world is watching to see how this news not only affects the company and tech industry as a whole, but also what it means for overall tolerance of how long CEOs can stay in power when it appears they have fallen on their sword.

It is no secret that CEO tenures are getting shorter and shorter. It seems that almost every day a well-known CEO is being shown the door or is quietly “taking a break”. Mark Fields of Ford, Jeff Immelt at GE, Mario Longhi of US Steel are just a few recent examples, all within a few weeks of each other. Rumors are also building that Avon CEO Sheri McCoy will “retire” early after years of struggling to get the cosmetics company on track. Elsewhere, Jack Dorsey, Twitter CEO, continues to face pressure to step down following a bot scandal and lack of user growth.

Of course, CEOs are under continuous pressure throughout their tenures – it’s part of the job description. But in recent months, it seems there is less and less tolerance among shareholders, activist investors, customers and partners, and even the media, to give under-performing, or mis-stepping CEOs time to rebound. But why do some CEOs weather the storm while others are grounded or bumped from the cockpit? When does the responsibility for bad actions end with the CEO exiting, along with other departures in the C-suite?

While the Uber story continues to play out, it’s interesting to contrast it with another controversial example: theUnited Airlinesalleged abuse of a passenger. Both the Uber and United episodes involved emotional and/or physical mistreatment. Both went viral and stoked public outcry. Both were in the news for weeks. But the endings were vastly different.

The United case was one of the biggest corporate firestorms this year. With more than 100 million views of the incident within hours of its posting, outrage spanned all the way to China, where a day later it garnered more than 550 million views and more than 240,000 comments on Weibo (China’s version of Twitter.) The passenger, who refused to leave his seat after he was randomly selected to de-board an overbooked flight, was violently dragged off the plane by the police, to the shock of onlooking passengers. The passenger suffered a concussion and lost teeth.

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United CEO Oscar Munoz was highly criticized for not immediately issuing an apology (he eventually did…three days later), and calls for his resignation started almost immediately.

United has since revised its customer service policy changes, including limiting the use of law enforcement, increasing compensation incentives for volunteers giving up their seats, and reducing the amount of overbooking. But why wasn’t Munoz forced out after this very high-profile incident?

It may have something to do with Munoz’s own leadership style, which is low-key, focused, predictable. He came from humble, blue-collar roots, making him relatable to many. He had returned to work early following a heart transplant. Munoz signed new contracts with contentious labor unions, and even recently hired the company’s “first chief storyteller.” He also invited Fortune to follow him around, resulting in a profile in which he sounded nothing like the stereotypical corporate CEO. And he had also recently been named PR Week’s“Communicator of the Year,” for rehabilitating the image of an airline once tangled in multiple image crises.

Yes, the passenger Dr. David Dao was mistreated horribly on a United plane. And Munoz’s initial comments minimizing the matter were defensive and off base. But he made significant changes to the airline’s policy to prevent this from happening again. All of…

How content drives revenue (and how to prove it)

In business, revenue is often the bottom line. Let’s face it, as marketers, if we’re not driving new customers and business isn’t growing, we’re not really doing our job. It’s up to us to drive business along with the sales team.

Something that intrigues me is how few people seem to understand that you can and do drive revenue with the content you create. I’ve had clients ask how you measure the success of a content marketing program, and it’s not a secret that we should keep guarded. We should be showing our clients exactly what we’re doing to drive revenue for them. By showing what we’re doing, we’re showing our worth and helping them understand what content is doing for their bottom line.

Whether you work for an agency and help clients or are in-house, you have someone you report to — be it a client, boss or board. And while within the industry, we feel that content is second nature, the reality is, it’s not in the broad picture. Many people outside of our niche industries don’t fully understand content marketing. Does your mom, dad, best friend or spouse really understand what you do for a living? Most don’t.

Driving revenue with content marketing

So how do you drive revenue with content marketing?

The most straightforward answer is found simply by looking inside your analytics account and finding out how much revenue each page or post has generated for your website. You can easily find out what your best-performing pages or posts are.

With some of my clients, we’ve found that inspirational content drove lots of revenue. For example, a major home goods retailer found great success with their blog posts that focused on design inspiration.

If we wrote a post that showed customers how to create a current season trend at home for less, we saw a big return. Customers liked being able to shop the blog post. We’d link the product URLs right in the blog post, and that allowed the customer to easily find the items. But it also allowed us to track the referring traffic to those URLs and see how much came from the blog post itself.

Behind-the-scenes or preview posts

Another great revenue-generating piece of content is often the behind-the-scenes or preview posts for a brand. We often find that the loyal customer base (i.e., the blog reader) wants to know what’s going on before the public. If we create a blog post that highlights a new product line and share a few sneak-peek images, we can start to create a bit of excitement over the launch.

If we want to track revenue on that post, we can go several routes — one would be to follow the referral traffic from the…

Ben Mahan Joins ARMCO as CTO

ACES Risk Management (ARMCO), the provider of financial quality control and compliance software ACES Audit Technology, has announced that it has hired Ben Mahan as Chief Technology armco.usOfficer
ACES Risk Management (ARMCO), the provider of financial quality control and compliance software ACES Audit Technology, has announced that it has hired Ben Mahan as Chief Technology armco.usOfficer

Officer. Mahan, was hired to support ARMCO as it moves into its next phase of growth. As CTO, Mahan will lead the company’s IT organization, and will champion the next phase of innovation and growth for ARMCO. He has more than two decades of executive-level technology experience that includes growing technology divisions for organizations in the e-learning, supply chain, healthcare and…

CMO Today: Publicis’s Cannes Backout Backlash; Amazon’s NFL Ads; Diversity Debate Rages

Greetings from Cannes. We’re at the business end of the advertising festival now and it’s a good time to reflect on some of the excellent campaigns that won awards this year. My personal favorites were State Street’s “Fearless Girl” statue, which took home three Grand Prix, Burger King’s print ads that depicted real restaurants that had burned down, with the tagline “Flame Grilled Since 1954,” and Afghanistan Ministry of Health’s “Immunity Chain” — a beaded bracelet for babies to wear that tells doctors everything they need to know about the child’s vaccinations

I’m not sure many people would have predicted that the big story out of Cannes this year was the fact that one ad group has decided it’s had enough. Loyal readers of this newsletter will remember that earlier this week, Publicis Groupe announced it will be skipping Cannes in 2018 and will reroute the savings into an artificial intelligence platform called Marcel. It’s all anyone can talk about this week. But as my CMO Today colleagues in Cannes reported, Publicis staffers are miffed. Publicis Groupe CEO Arthur Sadoun said in a memo to staff that “early feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.” I can just imagine the conversation, over a glass of champagne on a Michelin Star beach restaurant: “Yes, Arthur, the industry really must cut *sip* down on this *glug* sort of thing.” Meanwhile, Cannes Lions managing director Jose Papa told The Drum “there are a lot of misconceptions about the expense” of the event. He also said, in his previous sentence in the interview, that passes start at €1,595 for two days.

We’ve been hearing during Cannes about Amazon’s ability to upend the ad business on so many fronts — with its data, burgeoning ad tech play and, of course, its media adventures. Now, here’s something: Reuters reports that Amazon is planning to charge advertisers $2.8 million for ad packages so they can appear during the National Football League games it plans to stream this coming season. Amazon is reportedly offering ten 30-second slots each game, plus ads on Amazon.com during the football season. Amazon seems to be undercutting Twitter, which reportedly charged advertisers up to $8 million for its NFL streaming ad packages –…

CTO Distillation Market Key Players are Kraton, Westrock and Forchem, Says a New Research Report at ReportsnReports

PUNE, India, Jun 23, 2017 (PR Newswire Europe via COMTEX) — PUNE, India, June 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ —

CTO Distillation Market reports present the revenue opportunities in the CTO Distillation industry through 2022, highlighting the market size and growth by technology, geography, and sector and size band. This report analyses the current market trends, drivers and inhibitors impacting the CTO Distillation Market. The report outlines the evolution of CTO Distillation market by type and applications and identifies and assesses the best performing vendors in the market to 2022.

Browse 154 Tables and Figures, spread across 121 pages is available at http://www.reportsnreports.com/reports/1074287-global-cto-distillation-market-by-manufacturers-countries-type-and-application-forecast-to-2022.html .

Crude Tall Oil (CTO) is a by-product of the kraft pulping process used by many paper mills. Tall oil soap is collected at the mills and then acidulated to make crude tall oil. It is a mixture of fatty acids, rosin and Rubber neutral materials and forms water-in-oil emulsions and stabilizes mud systems at high bottom-hole temperatures. The CTO can then be further refined through the fractionation process to separate it into the components of tall oil fatty acid, tall oil rosin, distilled tall oil, pitch and heads. (GP-CTO).The report displays the competitive situation among the top manufacturers, with sales; revenue and market share in 2016 and 2017. This report focuses on the CTO Distillation in Global market, especially in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific, South America, Middle East and Africa. This report categorizes the market based on manufacturers, regions, type and application.

Market Segment by Manufacturers, this report covers – Kraton, Westrock (Ingevity), Forchem, Georgia-Pacific, Eastman, Harima, OOO Torgoviy Dom Lesokhimik, Lascaray, Segezha Group, IOP and DRT

Market Segment by Type, covers: Tall Oil Fatty Acids (TOFA), Tall Oil Rosin (TOR), Tall Oil Pitch (TOP) and Distilled Tall Oil (DTO)

Market Segment by Applications, can be divided into Fuel and Fuel Additives, Surfactant, Mining and…

AI Will Disrupt Brand Building As We Know It Says Gartner’s Andrew Frank

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Gartner's Andrew Frank
Gartner’s Andrew Frank

Photo courtesy of Gartner

Gartner’s Andrew Frank

Andrew Frank has been studying artificial intelligence (AI) since the 1980s before becoming a game developer and eventually a interactive marketing technology expert for large agencies. Now as VP Distinguished Analyst with Gartner for Marketing Leaders, he assesses the impact of AI on marketing. He is both optimistic about the impact AI will have, describing it as inevitable, and realistic about the disruption the capabilities will have on purchase decisions and brand building.

I recently discussed these topics with Frank. Here are the highlights of our conversation.

John Ellett: Where do you see AI or AI-like capabilities impacting marketers first?

Andrew Frank: The first place they’re impacting marketers is indirectly through the rise of conversational interfaces, which are enabled by AI. You could debate whether they are actual examples of AI but I think that things like Alexa and Google Assistant are first-order importance to marketers because people are using those to actually order products. Especially in the B2C space where we’re at the early part of the adoption curve. But I think that marketers have to take an interest in developing Alexa-like skills because this is at the ground zero of their interactions with their customers. And while it doesn’t necessarily take AI skills to create a skill for Alexa, that’s the first contact point that a lot of marketers are having with this new world of AI technology.

Ellett: I think of Alexa more like a natural language processing (NLP) keyboard. It doesn’t really change the function that the customer is looking for or how the function is processed or managed by Amazon, but the input is NLP versus keyboard. Is that oversimplified?

Frank: It may miss some of the nuance. It’s correct to think of Alexa as the next stage of evolution of search. And maybe it’s even useful to think of search engine marketing as being the first contact that marketers had with AI, because I think it’s fair to say that the Google algorithms for indexing websites probably have some relation to AI. So in some sense, it’s evolution, not revolution. But I do think that the nuances of how you interact when you’re having a voice conversation versus a keyboard-and-screen conversation are important. The fact that you don’t get a list of options when you talk to Alexa is particularly important. You may get a list if you switch modes and go to the screen, but if you’re just doing a pure voice interaction then I do think that the exposure of options is much more limited.

Ellett: What impact do you think that’s going to have on how marketers build brands when it’s a machine is giving you the recommendation?

Frank: I think it has a pretty deep impact. There are new opportunities for branding elements in things like how you construct the vocal interface, but I do think that it’s another layer of mediation that you have to try to market through. I think that this proxy web as I like to call it, this world where there’s more and more layers of machine intelligence between the product and the buyer. That inherently makes branding more difficult. You can actually see evidence that it’s taking its toll if you look at both patterns of ad avoidance and declining trust in media, the rise of low receptivity and decline in loyalty, and even decline in brand equity. You’re seeing a lot of evidence that the more we rely on our social interfaces through machines, the further away we are from investing directly in brands as opposed to investing it in the intermediaries that control our exposure to brands .

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Burger King CMO: don’t treat agencies like creative vending machines

Panel (L-R): Boyer, Geraldine Tunnell, SVP consumer and small business marketing at Dell, and Schwan
Panel (L-R): Boyer, Geraldine Tunnell, SVP consumer and small business marketing at Dell, and Schwan

Speaking at a panel in Cannes hosted by The Economist, Schwan spoke of the need for “true partnership” between clients and agencies.

“The client-supplier relationship is very transactional and doesn’t deliver, usually, great creative work,” he said.

“If you want to be a good client, don’t be a client, be a partner. Always work on the relationship, always talk very openly about the business side of life, the brand side of life.

“Agencies are not vending machines, right? You cannot throw in money and hope the creative work comes out. It doesn’t work like this, you cannot work like this. You always have to be very close, and that’s sometimes a challenge.”

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