Brands Will Become Media: Here’s How


 

Screen Shot 2012-11-01 at 9.41.03 AM
If your company doesn’t have the above model in place a year from now, you may regret it.

You’ve probably felt it for some time, but now the roadmap is becoming clear—companies must build their own media empires. And if they don’t, they risk missing a window of opportunity that provides myriad benefits, whether it’s telling their own stories or becoming more efficient with the media dollars they spend.

Trends in media consumption point to the convergence of savvy marketing tactics combined with a real-time newsroom approach for brands to be seen and heard in a collectively social, digital and mobile world.

Facebook: Engagement Isn’t Enough

First, let’s start with Facebook which, thanks to an alleged algorithm change, has been at the center of controversy in the marketing world. Though it’s cited as the reason brands have noticed their content reaching a lower volume of Facebook users, the caveat is that there is much a company can do to increase the odds of being seen and heard on Facebook. But, it relies on a brand doing a few things really well.

For starters, it’s not enough to solely engage on Facebook. A company now has to provide a steady flow of high-quality content, which then relies  not only on organic content sharing from Facebook users but also on subsequent media purchases with Facebook in order for that message to spread.

Sound familiar? It’s how advertising has been done in the past, only with a big difference. Much of the content that tends to do best is oftentimes associated with current news or highly relevant social issues. Take for example whatOreo has done with its Daily Twist initiative, where in honor of the cookie’s 100th anniversary, agency teams get together daily to decide how to riff off of relevant, often newsworthy, subjects that, by day’s end, produce a new piece of clever, highly shareable visual content that’s sent out into the digital ecosystem. This type of approach makes clear what most pundits miss when challenging the notion of “ROI” in social media—the reason a company wants to amass followers in social media is to build their own marketing/communications network, which bypasses the middle man and goes right to the source.

The end game in social media won’t be accumulation of fans but rather your ability to reach them and potentially inspire action.

Full story

 

Keep Your Best Employees: 5 Steps | business.time.com


http://business.time.com

Rachel came to us with strong work ethic, experience creating organizational hierarchies, an understanding of what it takes to be operationally excellent, and perhaps most importantly, a devotion to our company’s cause: promoting client needs in a collaborative team-oriented environment.Keep Your Best Employee

I put her in a role that made the most sense to me-that is, the job that took the bulk of my time. I was the project manager on almost every project for our customers, but in order to grow the company, I realized I needed to focus on higher-level goals, and not the day-to-day grind. I had intentionally hired someone who had a different skill set, someone who’d be good at nurturing employees by implementing human resource structure (which I’m not). Isn’t that what the experts tell you to do? But I made a critical mistake. I gave her a job that fit my personality, not hers.

She was miserable. She hated the job. The project manager role was external facing and required being heavy-handed with our clients to keep projects on task and within scope.  While Rachel is great at getting employees to tow the line, she struggled with this requirement when it came to our clients.

My instinct told me she was exactly the type of employee User Insight needed to be successful based on her background, professionalism, experience, and approach to the job, but I also knew she was on the way out if things didn’t change, and change quickly.So, in the lobby of a hotel during a business trip, Rachel and I sat down over a stale cup of coffee to discuss how we might carve out a job that would entice her to stay at User Insight.

This is how I did it:   Leer más “Keep Your Best Employees: 5 Steps | business.time.com”

entrepreneur.com | Stories


Growing and managing a workforce is almost never easy. And when it comes to staffing up, business owners have to juggle issues such as tracking resumes, analyzing candidates and other human resources obligations. For smaller firms, the difficulties associated with managing these duties can often be amplified.

The good news is there are several useful toolsthat can help. Though they will not replace a physical HR manager, these three services should be able to help even the smallest company hire and manage employees more efficiently:

Small Business Job Growth Continues
image credit: Shutterstock

Small businesses continued to add jobs in October, but the question remains whether this will be a sustainable trend given growing uncertainty about the economy and looming fiscal issues.

Employment in private small business (companies with one to 49 employees) payrolls rose by 50,000 in October on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the ADP Small Business Report released Thursday. This is the largest payroll increase since July and accounts for 32 percent of employment gains across all company size groups.

Within small businesses, 37 percent of the employment growth contribution was associated with companies having between one to 19 employees while 63 percent of October’s small business growth was driven by companies with 20 to 49 employees.
Many small businesses remain confident in the economy’s future growth despite and a recent study by Kauffman/LegalZoom Startup Confidence Index suggested that the credit crunch for small businesses may be easing.

 

90% of Marketers Know the Importance of Content, but only 38% Have a Strategy


Author: Ally | http://blog.scoop.it
http://goo.gl/xHbP7

According to a recent survey conducted by Econsultancy, 90% of respondents (1,300 marketing professionals) believe that content marketing will continue becoming increasingly important within the next year, but a surprisingly low 38% of them actually have a content strategy in place.

It’s hard to say that a day goes by for marketers without hearing, talking, or reading about some type of content marketing strategy. This is clearly demonstrated by the 73% of respondents who believe that brands are becoming publishers. Why is it, then, that only 38% of companies currently have a defined content marketing strategy and only 55-58% say that they are planning one?

After seeing these numbers, I thought of a few reasons why companies wouldn’t have a content marketing strategy, and why those reasons are not acceptable excuses.

1. We don’t have time to create our own content…     Leer más “90% of Marketers Know the Importance of Content, but only 38% Have a Strategy”

Keep Your Best Employees: 5 Steps | business.time.com


Looking to attract and retain the talent required to take your company out of start-up phase and onto the next level? Be open to change.

Rachel came to us with strong work ethic, experience creating organizational hierarchies, an understanding of what it takes to be operationally excellent, and perhaps most importantly, a devotion to our company’s cause: promoting client needs in a collaborative team-oriented environment.

I put her in a role that made the most sense to me-that is, the job that took the bulk of my time. I was the project manager on almost every project for our customers, but in order to grow the company, I realized I needed to focus on higher-level goals, and not the day-to-day grind. I had intentionally hired someone who had a different skill set, someone who’d be good at nurturing employees by implementing human resource structure (which I’m not). Isn’t that what the experts tell you to do? But I made a critical mistake. I gave her a job that fit my personality, not hers.

She was miserable. She hated the job. The project manager role was external facing and required being heavy-handed with our clients to keep projects on task and within scope.  While Rachel is great at getting employees to tow the line, she struggled with this requirement when it came to our clients.

My instinct told me she was exactly the type of employee User Insight needed to be successful based on her background, professionalism, experience, and approach to the job, but I also knew she was on the way out if things didn’t change, and change quickly.

So, in the lobby of a hotel during a business trip, Rachel and I sat down over a stale cup of coffee to discuss how we might carve out a job that would entice her to stay at User Insight.

This is how I did it…     Leer más “Keep Your Best Employees: 5 Steps | business.time.com”

Create your own definition of innovation | game-changer.net


by Jorge Barba
innovation clarity

As part of my auditing process, one of the key questions I ask is: what was the most recent innovation in your industry?

Depending on how this question is answered, it will tell me a few things:

  • How this company both defines and perceives innovation
  • If they are focused on innovation
  • If they are keeping tabs on their respective industry

That question is followed up with a similar but less obvious question: who is the most loved in your industry and why?. This one tells me if they even care about delighting their customers. But it can also tell me if they associate customer loyalty with innovation. Leer más “Create your own definition of innovation | game-changer.net”

3 Mistakes Kodak Made In Their Innovation Strategy

Believing they figured out the innovation formula
Once companies experience innovation success, they grab on to the process that got them there and believe that it contains the magic answer. In some extreme cases, companies treat their innovation process as a trade secret. Big mistake.
The one constant in business is change and the innovation process is no different. Organizations that stick with any process because “it worked in the past” puts themselves at risk of future failure. If change is inevitable, then change to the processes, policies, rules, etc need to change. Innovation is no different. Large organizations that have generational success with their innovation strategy are ones that continuously innovation the way they innovate.


Via Scoop.ithuman being in – perfección

With this morning’s announcement that Kodak would seek bankruptcy protection, I reflected back on how and why it reached this point. In my opinion, Kodak fell into the same trap that most large, successful and once highly innovative companies get into – how to keep the innovation engine working over the life of the company.

So what are the 3 mistakes that Kodak made?
Weak innovation portfolio management
Like most large successful companies, once they achieve a significant market position, management retreats into a defensive mode. This includes how they make innovation investments. I’m willing to bet that if you “follow the money”, you would find Kodak’s investment model for innovation over the past 10 years would fall into the range of 95% to existing core products (e.g. film, chemicals, etc) and 5% into anything new. Leer más “3 Mistakes Kodak Made In Their Innovation Strategy”

Should I Outsource? To Be Or Not To Be Outsourcing

The Benefits
Outsourcing usually brings important benefits:
– Cost savings – this involves offshoring (companies recruiting workforce from abroad mainly for the reason it’s cheaper). For some it’s a necessity, for others just a business decision to maximize profit. Many large companies were forced by the recession to cut down costs and chose outsourcing by necessity, which stirs lots of controversies nowadays.
– Focus to core business tasks – the company may fuel investment and people’s force onto main processes of the business, leaving aside the non-essential energy consumers. Outsourcing raises the predictability of variable costs, which is another benefit.
– Quality increase – outsourcing provides access to both technology (logistics that the company could not afford by itself) and knowledge (skills, intellectual property). This enhances the in-house ability for product innovation and boosts the image of the company from customers’ perspective.
– Contract and other legal advantages – externalized services imply having a legally binding contract that offers the possibility of applying penalties and special conditions. Also, tax incentives for hiring outsources in some countries can be remarkable.
– Scalability – you won’t have to worry about temporary decreases in productivity, the outsourced company will usually be able to manage such fluctuations and integrate positive deviations too. This is a main advantage of having an external workflow.
– Liability – companies developed on a lot of ramifications often transfer liability over some concerns that are outside their core competencies to outsourcers.
– A fair open schedule – you hear a lot of talk over the work-life balance and how to optimize it. Well, outsource some of your leg work and it’s achieved!
When to Outsource
There are various concerns regarding outsourcing, as it’s an important decision that will potentially shift your business processes. They are not decisive issues, but it’s important to anticipate the risk in order to minimize it. Main issues of outsourcers sound as following:
– “I won’t be able to supervise things as I do with my in-house workers.”Distance and time zones can be obstacles for exchanging feedback, so it may be less frequent than for internal processes. There are various software solutions for communication and employee management that will help you overcome this (VoIP, instant messaging, time tracking software such as Paymo, cost and schedule assessment tools).
– “I fear my outsourcers are not as qualified as I would like.” Get to know outsourcers’ skills, expertise and know-how, also be willing to spend some hours training them in matters of your company in order to achieve the best results. This way you won’t have surprises and you will share the responsibility in case something goes wrong. Why do that when it’s easier to cancel the contract and maybe ask for compensation? Well, maybe it’s just me, but it’s more ethical to share responsibility, plus you won’t waste time in finding another outsourcer each time, and another, and another…


Outsourcing

Laura Moisei | http://workawesome.com

There’s a half-joke that trolls round my office: “You cannot do it? Outsource it to the guy next to you!” Well, I agree, this doesn’t quite mean outsourcing but rather passing the buck, yet it works like charm at times!

To state things straight, it’s a world of interaction we live in and businesses often need to outsource tasks that can be done cheaper and better by specialized third parties. How to know if outsourcing is a go for your business?

This is quite a delicate matter, even though almost every company or professional has experienced outsourcing at some point, especially when starting up. Some businesses choose to outsource narrow processes such as billing, while others externalize large sections (customer service is among the most common task here).

Most of the outsourcing pros affirm that it saves time and money, but in order to do it right and not achieve the opposite effect you should analyze some nuances.

First question for you: How wide is the task you want to outsource? A few parameters to take into account: number of people involved from your side, time and resources demanded. Before deciding to outsource, it’s always a good idea to create a formula to quantify your costs and benefits and to prove you that outsourcing has a long term benefit rather than short term – don’t hesitate to use your own variables to reach a conclusion. Obviously, saving costs should not be the sole purpose of outsourcing. Leer más “Should I Outsource? To Be Or Not To Be Outsourcing”

10 Facts About Working at a Startup vs. a Big Company

1) Responsibility, accountability, impact: at a startup it’s unavoidable to have lots of responsibility and accountability. There’s no doubt, too, that being at a startup will put you in a position to make a huge impact. If you do amazing work the entire company and all of its customers will benefit from it. And you’ll be loved for it. You’ll get notes from the CEO and other leaders complimenting you on how awesome your work is. On the flip side, if you make a big mistake, the whole company pays for it. But keep in mind that most startup cultures prefer agility and speed to cautiousness. It’s likely that your mistake won’t actually get you in trouble, as long as you were trying to do the right thing.

2) Risk: working at a startup is riskier. The startup likely isn’t profitable, and probably only has at most 12-18 months worth of money in the bank (this is called the startup’s runway). If the company does very well, the CEO will raise more money and extend the runway. You’ll still have a job and each round you’ll get a salary closer and closer to market rate (more about this later). If the startup doesn’t do well, you’ll be out of a job when the startup runs out of money. But you’ll be forewarned if the CEO is transparent — most of them are in earlier stages. A startup is risky because you’re building something from nothing. You’re doing something ridiculously hard because you believe in it and want nothing more than to see it succeed. You’re not failing even when all the odds are against you. You’re the underdog in many ways.

And by the way, if you’re a good engineer you’ll have zero issue finding another job. Zero. Every company in software, big and small, needs more good people. This trend won’t change for a long, long time, either.


everythingisgonnabeonline.com/

I’ve spent the last few weeks trying to recruit friends of mine to come work with me at my super early startup.  In doing so I’ve had to educate a lot of my friends on what it’s like to be at a startup, and why you might want to join one.  This blog post is a summary of all that advice.  Oddly enough, I wrote a similar blog post my senior year of college while interning at Redfin.  And since college I joined Cloudera before they were funded and left when the company closed its Series C, or third round of funding.  The advice below mostly comes from my experiences at Redfin and Cloudera. Leer más “10 Facts About Working at a Startup vs. a Big Company”

CanvasPop Lets You Print Out Your Facebook Photos & Hang Them As Art

While smartphone users take millions of photos, how many times do we seen them outside a smartphone or computer screen.

CanvasPop prints out images and frames ranging from 8×10 to 24×72 with prices ranging from $30 to $419. On top of that, you can either print out the image on a regular page or get a frame included with it with white wood and espresso wood frames available as choices.


http://www.simplyzesty.com

If you regularly upload photos onto Facebook, chances are you’ve a number of photos that you feel are impressive enough to be displayed on your wall. If that’s the case, a U.S. company called CanvasPop, a company that prints out uploaded and Instagram photos, have expanded their service so that you can blow up and print out your own Facebook photos.

That means that any photo taken with a digital camera or smartphone can be blown up. One of the immediate problems with such a service is that if you blow up a photo that’s both small and stored on low resolution, than blowing it up will make it look pixelated and blurry. The company has solved that by developing a process over the last two years which allow them to upsize images, which they’ve been doing for Instagram users over the last six months.

Also the company centres around artistic photography (the inclusion of the word ‘canvas’ hints towards this), allowing you to choose between various filters – similar to what you would see on Instagram – before printing them out for you >>>> Leer más “CanvasPop Lets You Print Out Your Facebook Photos & Hang Them As Art”

CEOs Who Use Social Media Boost Company Image

BRANDfog CEO Ann Charles said America is at a point where business leaders can’t afford to shirk social media.

“As consumers begin to seek out brands that serve a broader social purpose, the best way to articulate company values is through the voice of the executive leadership team,” Charles said. “This bolsters confidence in business leadership and provides a halo effect for the entire brand.”

Among those surveyed, more than 80 percent said they were more likely to trust a company whose CEO and leadership team engage in social media.


http://www.businessnewsdaily.com

Despite many business executives’ reluctance to use Facebook and Twitter to communicate with customers and clients,

5-way-social-media-art-02

new research shows leaders who buck the trend and use social media help raise a brand’s profile, instill confidence in a company’s leadership team and build greater trust, brand loyalty and purchase intent among customers.

In a study by social media branding firmBRANDfog, more than 80 percent of those surveyed believed CEOs whoengage on social media are better equipped than their peers to lead companies in today’s technology-laden world. Additionally, 93 percent believe that executive engagement on social media helps communicate company values and grow and evolve corporate leadership in times of crisis. Leer más “CEOs Who Use Social Media Boost Company Image”

Online reputation management, now with crowdsource sauce

humour… or rage. People are. Based on their peer-reviewed accuracy, the BrandsEye Crowd are paid for their effort.

“The global online reputation management industry has always been plagued with poor data quality. Through the creation of BrandsEye Crowd, we have solved this problem, allowing for the data and insights we gather for clients to be trusted as a far more central component of strategic decision making — throughout businesses,” says Tim Shier, MD of BrandsEye.

Shier reckons his system is a “radical innovation in the online reputation management space”.

“We know of crowdsourced rating in academia, especially economics, but not for commercial brands. We’re very proud of the system, which is already showing incredible accuracy, and we believe can get to between 95-100% perfect with a bit more refinement. In this space accuracy is all-important — accurate data quality gives you quality insights, which helps you make better business decisions.”


By  | http://memeburn.com


This is interesting. Take the field of online reputation management, the practice of managing a person’s or company’s brand across the web and social networks, then add a bit of crowd source sauce using ranking techniques better known in chess grandmaster circles… and what do you get?

Well, you should get improved accuracy in measuring what people are saying (and thinking) about you or your company online — and you get to pay a whole lot of people to help you do it.

This is what the latest iteration of BrandsEye claims to do. BrandsEye is one of many online reputation management tools out there, but is only one of about 10 that has caught the world’s attention. Operating in more than 100 countries, it’s a creation of a Cape Town-based digital agency called Quirk.

In the digital era, where everyone is tweeting, publishing and sharing — keeping an eye on what people are saying about your brand is important, especially if its negative. Leer más “Online reputation management, now with crowdsource sauce”

The company behind the brand: in reputation we trust

Our study confirms that consumers make purchase decisions based on company reputation, not just on the goods or services they buy. The consuming public makes it their business to know who sells products / services they like by checking labels, doing research and showing displeasure if the company behind the brand is not readily apparent. Consumers are no longer passive or in the dark. They are in the driver’s seat. Whether they are steered by where goods are manufactured, how employees are treated, what a company is doing for (or to) the environment or a host of other reasons, consumers made it abundantly clear in our survey that they want to know where their money is going and who they are supporting by buying their goods. In this new decade of financial constraints where consumers feel that they have far less say over their economic futures than they did years ago, consumers are taking greater control over what brands they buy. They now consider
themselves rightful investors in the companies they choose to support…


http://www.webershandwick.es | Weber Shandwick es el líder mundial de las agencias de comunicación RETHINKING

CORPORATE REPUTATION

Brand

Monumental shifts in the reputation landscape today are transforming how and what companies communicate. Radical changes caused by the internet, globalisation, NGOs/third parties, diminishing returns on traditional media, a more demanding general public and increasing social activism have created a new dynamic where the company behind the brand is becoming as or more important than individual brands themselves.

As consumers around the world have greater online access to a brand’s lineage, the influence of the brand “parent” or company behind the brand matters even more. In this uncertain climate, consumers expect more from leading companies and have no trouble boycotting those that fail to live up to new standards.

At the same time, leaders need to know how to do business in an environment where consumers are not just purchasing their products or services on their own merits, but are also shopping by company reputation. The mounting convergence of brand and corporate reputation revealed in our study ushers in a new era of marketing communications.

http://www.webershandwick.es/web/app/public/reports/InRepWeTrust_r12.pdf

 

Elevator Pitches Don’t Work ***RECOMENDADO***


jeremywaite.net | More from this user

Brand Consultant Jeremy Waite explaining why elevator pitches don’t work anymore. Great advice for entrepreneurs and anyone who’s about to start their own business.