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Visual search for marketers

WEB_mobile_phone_thumbs_upFor many of us living in the Western world, mobile devices have officially taken on the role of ‘life remote control’. Communication, validation, remuneration, clarification and all manner of other ‘ations’ are conducted through our mobile devices, tens to hundreds of times a day.

It’s no wonder then, that there’s an intensifying scramble for marketers to find the next innovative way to place their brands neatly within these daily mobile interactions and – the holy grail – make them a valued part of a consumer’s routine.

This isn’t easy. There’s a lot of noise around mobile.

All data is made equal, but some is more equal than others

Amazon by Nic Cooper:Flickr“If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses,” Henry Ford would almost certainly have said in 1902 (had he been asked for a pithy quote on innovation that could be trotted out for the next century or two).

History is certainly littered with examples of how actually talking to customers about what they want has resulted in, shall we say, less than productive outcomes for organisations. Indeed, Malcolm Gladwell’s book Blink cites numerous and entertaining examples of how consumer research lets us down.

However, this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t listen to customers or look at their behaviour, but rather, try to understand the context in which they are providing us with the information.

The Daily Poke: The latest squeeze

The latest squeezeIn a world of increasingly digitised relationships, physical interaction has been given a bit of a cold shoulder. Naturally, no one would suggest we put away our devices to actually reach out to each other. No need, when we have e-gurus like Petter Prinz and his new interactive cuddling app, HUG.

The ex-Google employee explains, “With Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp we’re constantly trying to keep in touch, but along the way we’ve lost the physical touch.” HUG nuzzles into that gap, allowing you to send someone a squeeze they can actually feel. Like an emoji, only buzzier.

#FROW2025 – London Fashion Week in a digital age

WEB_London_Fashion_WeekThere was an abundance of media buzz surrounding the latest tech and digital devices being used on the catwalk during the final fashion shows for A/W 2015.

In light of this, Federico Barbieri, former senior vice-president digital and ebusiness for the Kering Group, and Paulo Bernini, creative director of Open Reply, have re-imagined the event as to what the focus for those will be on the front row at A/W Fashion Week 2025.

Does programmatic video signal the end of the TV ad?

WEB_TV_televisionVideo is a key portal to the consumer with its emotional appeal and its ability to tell stories like no other medium bar TV.

As such, advertisers increasingly look to blend video-based advertising and programmatic technology to market products. According to a 2014 eMarketer report, advertisers and publishers spent $700m (£468m) on programmatic technology and this is set to triple by the end of 2015.

Programmatic video has many advantages over traditional TV advertising; the only other medium with the same visual appeal. Firstly, it delivers ads to individuals based on their preferences, live digital footprint and intent signals.

Pay your own way with Facebook Messenger

WEB_Facebook_MessengerFacebook has announced users of its Messenger app in the US will be able to send and receive money from contacts for free through a new payments feature.

This follows other recent social media and mobile payment integrations such as Snapcash in the US, which allows Snapchat users to send money to friends via the app, and Barclay’s recent incorporation of Twitter handles to its Pingit money transfer app in the UK.

By choosing not to partner with payments behemoth PayPal, Facebook has chosen to utilise its sparse experience across gaming and the old credits system to build their own solution. The benefit to users is simplicity of use, without having to share details of bank accounts etc with each payee.

The Daily Poke: Shrine to literature

Shrine to literature 1Luxury meets literature and they get married in a concrete cathedral. Don’t believe me? Head to downtown Chengdu and the new Fangsuo Bookstore. Architect Chu Chih-Kang has erected his enormous shrine to book shopping near the ancient Daci Temple, taking cues for his design from Buddhist texts.

Choice: the future of social login

WEB_Janrain_social_login_trendsFacebook continues to dominate when it comes to social login trends for Q1 2015, with a 45% share of social logins and a 2% rise from last quarter.

With results like these, it’s difficult to imagine a time when Facebook didn’t command social login across all sectors. However, what’s increasingly clear is that the trends are fluctuating and change is undeniably on the horizon.

When it comes to using your social identity, the instinctive reaction might be to pick Facebook regardless of the brand that you are engaging with. Similarly, as a brand, it is tempting to simply review the stats and thus provide Facebook as the only option for social login.

Infographic: digital ad crimes

Click-Fraud_infographicDigital advertising adoption rates continue to soar in the UK and is on pace to outstrip all other traditional formats combined. The total UK advertising market will hit £15.8bn in 2015, with just under £8bn of that going to digital ads.

However, the rapid growth of digital hasn’t come without obstacles for advertisers.

Although digital advertising makes it easier to target audiences, track campaigns and in many ways is more efficient than traditional advertising, it has its own host of challenges. At the forefront of the discussion are paid ad impressions that are not seen, ads appearing next to or within risqué content and clicks that are logged from non-human traffic.

Beware the ides of April

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 2.20.01 AM

(Google Webmaster Central Blog)

Google are regularly updating their search algorithm. Most of the time, these changes are small and don’t effect the way your website ranks.

However, occasionally Google will roll out a major update, such as Panda or Penguin, that can affect the search performance of your website in a huge way.

This week (21 April) Google released a mobile ranking algorithm. This means that mobile-friendly websites will now be given an improved ranking within mobile search results.