Latest Posts

My role in “Meet Me in Starbucks”

starbucks01eI am delighted to have played a leading role in the new global Starbucks campaign “Meet Me in Starbucks” which launches tomorrow. This is how it came about. Read More »

NFC: No more excuses

NFCNear Field Communication (NFC) technology has received a somewhat tepid reception; with some analysts asking if NFC was a dead tech. However, the announcement of the Apple iPhone 6 seems to have buoyed the NFC believers.

If there is one brand that can make a technology “cool”, then Apple are the masters. So what impact will Apple’s announcement have for the future of NFC technology? Read More »

Sponsored: Mobile is approaching its tipping point

smartphoneThis article is brought to you by our partners The Association of Online Publishers

Mobile will hit the tipping point on 4 December this year.

That’s the date on which Google recently predicted search queries from mobile will overtake those from desktops. In other areas that tipping point has already been reached. At the recent AOP Forum on mobile advertising, The Guardian’s head of mobile and video Lee Fels revealed that, at weekends, up to 70% of the traffic to The Guardian’s football section comes from mobile. Read More »

Roadblock on the big data highway

Databigstock-300x200Big data was supposed to be the next big thing but while a few brands are exploiting it, many are not even ready to try.

The fact is most companies are still not ready, there is critical housekeeping to do first. The key task facing most marketing directors is getting their existing data into order. That means investing in data consolidation and developing clearly defined measurement norms.

Only then will they be ready to move on and start mining external big data sources for additional information. Read More »

Sponsored: A marriage made in Shoreditch: Why Unilever wants London’s tech talent

Marc Mathieu003 (1)This article is brought to you by our partners ad:tech London

From Old Street’s Silicon Roundabout to West London’s Triangle, the capital’s much lauded tech scene continues to excite entrepreneurs, investors and politicians alike as we vie with the likes of San Francisco and Tel Aviv to become the world’s premier digital city.

Brands are the latest entrants to the tech party with global players investing serious capital in the technologies that will give their products and marketing the edge. Enthusiasm for ‘madtech’ (marketing and advertising technology) among brands is at an all-time high as social media, mobile and a data innovation lead a revolution of the marketing industry. Read More »

From wearables to useables: Marketers need to think bigger than the Apple Watch

Apple WatchWhen Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook recently unveiled the much-awaited Apple Watch, hailing it the company’s most personal device to date, I couldn’t help but think that’s only partially true.

Unlike iPhones, the real value to consumers with the new watch lies in its ability to morph into something larger than what’s sitting on your wrist.

For months now the industry has been buzzing about wearables. However, I think that term is misleading. The future of these devices is not about what a consumer wears, but how they behave.

I foresee a major transition when there is true interconnectivity between watches and other devices, homes and vehicles – the phenomenon that’s referred to as the Internet of Things. The innovators who can build novel apps will drive the watch’s adoption, not the device itself. Read More »

The opinion machine

opinionWhat’s your opinion, right now, this second, today, right now, yesterday?!

Phew. Sometimes, trying to keep up with all the impulsively-expressed opinions floating around on social channels makes me wonder whether eventually, after years of relentlessly posting countless quantities of them, humankind will eventually evolve into nothing more than engorged brain connected to a super-lithe index finger that’s a blur of frenzied clicking.

The human need for self-expression is what drives it all, of course. With the means to broadcast one’s opinion to large audiences being so ubiquitously available, it’s never been easier to make oneself heard. And, with the immediacy of the big platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, it’s never been as fast. Read More »

Why brands must overcome ageism to succeed in paid social

Social mediaBrands can no longer assume that young people use all social networks or that older people are not getting involved. It just isn’t the case anymore. Different groups of people use different social networks and it continues to evolve. Brands failing to realise this will find their social media campaigns falling at the first hurdle as they throw good money after bad.

With Social Media Week London taking place this week, we analysed the demographic breakdowns for each network. We found that an impressive 45% of Facebook’s users are aged 35 and above and the number of users aged over 55 has increased by almost 10% in the past two years. All other ages have declined. Facebook is clearly no longer just a young person’s game. Read More »

Could connected TVs offer another way for advertisers?

smart tvFor most of us, TV remains the focal point of our living rooms, however, a report by eMarketer predicts that in 2014, UK consumers will spend more time viewing digital media than watching broadcast TV. It is this shift towards online video streaming and on-demand TV – as well as an increase in multi-screen viewing – that is making it difficult for advertisers to reach their target audience through traditional linear TV alone.

This is the reason why advertisers have started looking towards connected TV (CTV), which can be used alongside mobile, tablet, and desktop, as a channel for digital video. CTVs are televisions that connect to the internet, allowing online video streaming, as well as web browsing and other online activities. As the benefits of multi-screen video advertising are being realised, CTV is expected to prove just as important as other screens for advertisers when vying for the consumer’s attention. Read More »

OOH is a new point-of-sale for online retail brands

trains by svenwerk:FlickrSecond screen purchasing is gaining serious traction. As social media rolls out user friendly shopping tools such as Facebook’s Buy Button and Twitter’s Product Card, consumers have never had it easier when it comes to mobile shopping.

According to the Centre For Retail Research, online retail sales made via mobile devices will grow by 62% this year, to a total of £7.92 billion. This is equivalent to 17.6% of UK online retail sales. Sales using tablets will grow by 100%, to £3.10bn, while smartphone retailing is expected to grow by 44.3% to £4.82. Smartphones will provide 60.8% of UK mobile shopping.

Mobile shopping is serious business and out-of-home is primed to become the key medium to deliver second screen sales. The likes of traincards, billboards and bus shelters, combined with changing consumer behaviour and growing wifi and 4G connectivity, are swiftly becoming an effective point-of-sale medium for online-only retailers and ‘clicks and mortar’ companies to drive search and purchase from their screen-based ‘shop windows’. Read More »