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The Daily Poke: Hit the hack button

Hit the hack buttonThe Internet of Things is about to get personal. No longer a fantasy, the dream of being able to connect and control your whole cornucopia of devices is fast becoming a reality. And Spark understand that pre-programmed tasks won’t always wash with today’s hack-savvy consumer.

Introducing the Internet Button. Named with ironic simplicity worthy of Douglas Adams, it will let you organize your online life systems your way. It uses a postage stamped sized WiFi module called a Photon, which you can hack to interact with any of your other Photon-enabled devices and the internet. The possibilities are endless, and definitely personalisable.

Is your website a Neanderthal? 

NRS infographic illustrates how websites dramatically increase brand reach for publishersWebsites were the dominant species of the early digital age. But from a content marketing perspective, they look increasingly like digital Neanderthals.

Overtaken by fitter, smarter alternatives, websites are losing relevance. Unless they evolve they’ll become extinct in a communications sense. We’ll stop paying attention to them.

Is it too late for Blackberry’s return to the touchscreen mobile market?

blackberry smartphoneWith Mobile World Congress in Barcelona almost at an end, last night Blackberry chief executive John Chen surprisingly announced BlackBerry’s re-entry into the touchscreen mobile market with the ‘Leap’, joining the recent classic keyboard models, with another three variants to come in 2015.

With an estimated 1,000 smartphones being shipped globally every minute compared to nothing less than a decade ago, can Blackberry reignite enthusiasm – not only amongst new customers, but those die hard brand advocates?

Today’s inspirational woman: Vonnie Alexander

Vonnie AlexanderIn celebration of International Women’s Day on Sunday 8 March, all this week we are asking senior industry figures who their most inspirational woman is.

Tracey Barber, Havas Helia’s group chief marketing officer, has chosen Kitcatt Nohr’s Vonnie Alexander.

The Daily Poke: Chat in the checkout LINE

Chat in the checkout LINEEvery month, 181 million people chatter away on their much-loved LINE app. Only they’re not just babbling about how dehydrated there are, whether they need another cappuccino or have a craving for yakisoba, they are getting their groceries delivered at the same time. As long as it’s just bottled water, coffee and instant noodles they need, currently at least. (THX Tim.)

7 things you need to know about LinkedIn’s new advertiser solutions

linkedin is ten years old this weekLinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with over 347m users. Professionals are signing up to join LinkedIn at a rate of more than two new members per second, so getting your advertising right can pay dividends.

LinkedIn’s new advertiser solutions tools is a big deal for the platform, which in the past has struggled to meet the needs of the modern b2b advertiser. A friend who works at LinkedIn reliably informs me that it has spent the last six weeks training its staff on this new platform, so it is clearly something everyone is taking very seriously.

What does the savvy marketer need to know about LinkedIn’s new ad tools? I’ve distilled things into seven easy points.

Humans put the ‘hyper’ in hyper-personalisation

topshopUntil very recently, I was under the impression that when a TV football commentator said things like “And that’s the 27th time Wayne Rooney has received a yellow card against a team that plays in white”, they were simply surfacing one of the many facts swimming round in their brains.

Of course, it turns out that commentators are delivered these sorts of statistical nuggets in a constant, real-time feed from the good folk at Opta.

It strikes me that this combination of real-time data delivered with the subtly and nuance only a human can provide is something of a Holy Grail for brands.

Today’s inspirational woman: Anne Frank

Anne Frank by Keith Putnam/FlickrIn celebration of International Women’s Day on Sunday 8 March, all this week we are asking senior industry figures who their most inspirational woman is.

Alex Altman, managing director of Global Solutions at MEC, has chosen Anne Frank…

The Daily Poke: Finding Mr Swipe Right

Finding Mr Swipe RightValentine’s Day saw Swipe Right, a romantic hotel package, being offered by W Hotels to those interested in finding love or perhaps something a little more casual. This romantic hotel package builds off of the popularity of dating apps and appeals to those who are familiar with Tinder, Hinger, Grindr or 3nder. (Thanks to matchmaker Julie)

Smartphone dominance is here; marketers must shift their approach

smartphones by Yutaka Tsutano/FlickrYesterday marked the 20th anniversary of Yahoo being incorporated as a company. While it’s amazing to think how much the internet has evolved and changed in the last two decades it’s even more exciting to look forward.

Coincidentally, yesterday also marked the start of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona where the tech world is focused on the unstoppable rise of mobile, which is bringing about smartphone dominance.

User activity has shifted to mobile across the globe with users now spending more time on mobile devices than PCs.