Dec 21, 2014

Top Google Searches vs. topics on Facebook in 2014

Google Top 10 from 1 trillion searches vs Facebook from 1 bajillion conversations


Google vs Facebook

1. Robin Williams vs. World Cup

2. World Cup vs. Ebola

3. Ebola vs. Elections in Brazil

4. Malaysia Airlines vs. Robin Williams

5.Ice Bucket Challenge vs. Ice Bucket Challenge

6. Flappy Bird vs. Gaza conflict

7. Conchita Wurst vs. Malaysia Airlines

8. ISIS vs. Super Bowl

9. Frozen vs. Ferguson

10. Winter Olympics Sochi vs. Winter Olympics Sochi

http://newsroom.fb.com/news/2014/12/2014-year-in-review/

https://www.google.com/trends/topcharts#vm=cat&geo&date=2014&cid

Facebook for publishers

I remember a time when publishers limited themselves to 3 or 5 posts a day. Facebook keeps telling everyone that they can publish 20, 40 or 60 stories a day, and that good stories will find their audiences. Here's a tool that helps publishers believe and may also contribute to a better user experience: targeting by interest,

http://adage.com/article/media/facebook-make-people-publishers-posts/296176/

Push notifications increase app launches by 88%

So why aren't more apps telling me what exactly they want to send me when asking for notification permission? One in five apps is opened once, and never again.

http://socialtimes.com/1-5-apps-used-never-used-infographic_b208675

Social Trends Media - the next native digital publishing success?

Nice overview in Forbes about the company and their 200+ social accounts appeared in February already.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/jjcolao/2014/02/27/the-1-million-a-month-business-behind-your-favorite-twitter-accounts/

Now they raised 2mn USD to further grow their main portal where most of there accounts would lead you to. Native digital newsroom, native digital cost structure, native digital business model.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/12/19/all-day-raises-2-million-to-be-a-media-portal-for-the-twitter-generation/

The portal is "All Day".


Dec 10, 2014

Instagram surpasses Twitter

In a recent blog post, Instagram announced that they have 300 million users. Twitter reported something over 280mn lately.
Still - no links. But there will be a verified button.

http://blog.instagram.com/post/104847837897/141210-300million

Dec 6, 2014

Publishers and platforms merge into one

Very interesting article and perspective on how publishers (creating content) and platforms (aggregating and distributing content created by others) are merging into one, and how this changes digital publishing / media as a whole.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/12/04/platform-or-publisher-whatever-you-call-it-its-the-future-of-media

Dec 4, 2014

Slide Deck: The Future of Digital

Business Insider again with their (very nice) "Mary Meeker light" approach. Here's a great collection of statistics, research, studies & predictions on the most important fields in digital.

http://www.businessinsider.com/the-future-of-digital-2014-slide-deck-2014-12#-1

Watch Arthur C Clarke predict the Internet in 1974

He chose 2001 for his vision. I love predictions of the future from the past, both the accurates like this one and also the inaccurate ideas. Anyone wants to give it a try for 2041?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVrtIias9lM

Dec 2, 2014

Search & Social through the eyes of BuzzFeed

"Search and Social" is the formula to master when you want to maximize reach. BuzzFeed tends to say that search becomes more and more irrelevant in comparison to social, which basically means Facebook in this context. Very interesting numbers and statistics presented in this GigaOM article.

https://gigaom.com/2014/11/24/buzzfeed-says-social-rules-and-it-is-bigger-than-most-tv-networks/ 

Digital transformation overview

Good overview with even better links on how business functions will be or are affected by digital transformation by Courtney Hunt.

https://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/digital-transformation-business-functions

Will eBay go physical?

Many forget that eBay is still a huge internet giant. And if you look at their activities including PayPal, it becomes obvious that their mission, beyond letting me sell my gadgets so I can buy new ones, is to help retailers connect with target groups and make better business. So why shouldn't that also occur in the physical world of retail? Besides testing same day delivery, eBay-transaction with pick-up in retailer stores and other things, here's an interesting experiment: a "magic mirror".

http://www.wired.com/2014/11/ebays-plan-reinvent-retail-shopping-magic-mirrors/

Are apps killing the web?

The evidence is there, if you look at time spent and all these stats. But the app system as a whole is dysfunctional, a "destination web", nothing but a bookmark list on our devices, and with poor app discovery mechanisms, only rudimentary attempts to deep link from app to app, no real "in-app-search" available and so on. Therefore, apps will definately not be the ultimate answer. My personal web-Guru John Batelle is working on putting this into words, and i am keen to see what he comes up with:

http://battellemedia.com/archives/2014/11/web-killing-apps.php

Best approach in my eyes so far:

http://blog.intercom.io/the-end-of-apps-as-we-know-them/

Facebook's and GoogleNow's importance for news distribution

Interesting view in this "Monday Note" about how Facebook and GoogleNow dominate news distribution. Also, very interesting BuzzFeed statistics included - and a comparison of user behaviour coming from different traffic sources. Relevant to every publisher.

http://www.mondaynote.com/2014/10/19/how-facebook-and-google-now-dominate-media-distribution/

Dark social accounts for majority of sharing

"Dark social" means not openly trackable sharing like email from user to user, and obviously also "self-motivated" sharing via messengers. Globally, all social networks except Facebook deliver less than 10% of sharing, Facebook around 20%, says a study commissioned by Radium One.

Download only after registration, but a good overview of the research to be found here:
http://venturebeat.com/2014/12/01/dark-social-facebook-is-less-than-one-third-of-all-social-sharing/

Whitepaper:
http://info.radiumone.com/Activate-112414-DarkSocial.html 

Own destinations vs. Social

I always have this discussion with clients: How much can we "give away" on Facebook and social networks, how much value do we need to build on our own digital destinations. There are more and more voices advocating that customer relations should be in the hand of the brand, so social should be used to drive people to own communities. Here's one of them:

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2383479/2015-trend-to-watch-the-social-homecoming-of-brands  

The future of mobile - Slide Deck

Business Insider frequently publishes useful slide decks, aggregating studies, research and statistics in a kind of "Mary Meeker light" approach. This one has some interesting numbers on mobile.

http://www.businessinsider.com/the-future-of-the-mobile-industry-2014-11#-1

News websites are the slowest

News websites are facing huge challenges these days. To master those, at least the "handcraft" part of digital should be working fine - but it isn't. In a report on AdWeek, a study is presented that shows interesting statistics about the time sites need for download - and the worst performing category are news websites.

http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/news-sites-top-list-slowest-loading-web-pages-161619

International Telecommunications Union - Study download / 2014

A free download from the ITU, a United Nations agency, presents a research about global internet usage. 40% of the world are now online, close to three billion people. This represents a growth of 6.6% in 2014. In the last 5 years, 1 billion people were added. Broadband fixed line remains an almost global desaster (9.8% of global population). More interesting statistics:

http://www.itu.int/en/ITU-D/Statistics/Documents/publications/mis2014/MIS2014_without_Annex_4.pdf


App install advertising

Good read on TechCrunch about Twitter, Google and Facebook making money from app install advertising. Since the app markets are dysfunctional, app discovery is a great problem for both consumers and businesses. App install ads are a great and growing business, and the main ingredients are to a) reach an audience on mobile and b) be able to deliver ads that link to the respective app market download page (for the right device and operating system). Most publishers struggle in realtime delivery of app install ads according to the device used, therefore Facebook, Twitter and Google dominate the market even more than (mobile) display.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/30/like-advertising-a-needle-in-a-haystack/

PayPal numbers another proof for mobile shift

Paypal processes one in six US dollars spent in eCommerce. So their numbers can be considered close to representative. From 2012 to 2013, their mobile transaction volume grew 99%. Black Friday 2013 to Black Friday 2014 sales saw an increase of 62% on mobile.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/12/01/paypal-reports-record-breaking-number-of-black-friday-shoppers-and-sales-on-mobile/

[GERMAN] 2014 - Studie zur Mediennutzung Jugendlicher in Deutschland

Deutschland-spezifische Zahlen kriegt man gar nicht sooo oft zu Gesicht. Schön, dass mal wieder eine Studie zum freien Download zur Verfügung steht. Soziale Netzwerke nehmen eher ab, Messenger eher zu; keine großen Überraschungen. Aber wenigstens "Beweise".

http://www.mpfs.de/fileadmin/JIM-pdf14/JIM-Studie_2014.pdf




Nov 17, 2014

The end of apps as we know them

Excellent, excellent, excellent article on the future of apps. I wrote a German blog about it, but wanted to publish the link here, too - in my eyes the most credible and probable vision about how apps and subsequently smartphones and their UIs will transform in the near future. Also a nice linklist at the end supporting this view. If you'll read one tech-/digital article today, read this one.

http://blog.intercom.io/the-end-of-apps-as-we-know-them/ 

The future of User Interfaces

Many people say that the movie "Her" may become historic one day because it depicts how computing will be in the future. The production designer of the movie inspired two interesting articles about how a possible future of user interfaces - that ultimately will make computing a completely different thing from what we know today with mouse, keyboard or touchscreen.

http://www.wired.com/2014/01/will-influential-ui-design-minority-report/
https://gigaom.com/2014/11/15/the-future-of-ui-could-be-more-like-listening-to-music/

ESPN's new mobile strategy

I would call it "ESPN's new strategy" though. It is based on stuff that we have seen with many others who think about the future of digital publishing: content is published in "cards" form, cards can be published on any device (and in social networks), and this means posting volume has to go up (BleacherReport hast around 400 articles each day(!)) and 'articles' are atomic pieces of content - long stories will exist, but for users who "enter the rabbit hole". Blue print for many publishers out there.

https://gigaom.com/2014/11/14/espns-future-mobile-strategy-fewer-apps-on-more-screens/

Google Playbook about how to be successful with Android apps

In a nice PDF form, Google released a playbook on how to succeed with apps on Google play. If I were planning to launch a major app on Google, I'd read this before meeting with agencies.

http://commondatastorage.googleapis.com/androiddevelopers/shareables/distribute/play_dev_guide_secrets_en.pdf

Social Media vs. Content Marketing

Many people say that social media marketing (as in spending dollars) will become performance marketing dictated by software, and all other social media activities will have to become an important, but still only a part of a greater content marketing strategy. I tend to agree,
Interesting piece on that on ClickZ:

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2381346/the-real-marketers-shift-from-social-media-to-content-marketing

Vodafone adds "professional" user to user support in Germany

Mila is a Swiss-German provider who offers to connect people who can do something really well with people who need that very something... it's as simple as that. Considering that many times heavy users of a certain product or service know more about these than many people in call centers, it is logical that a mobile & land line phone provider would use this resource - "Vodafone service friends" is an interesting experiment and I am keen to see wether this will significantly reduce the after sales cost for the company. The users helping users are obviously certified and get paid for what they offer.

http://www.businessinsider.com/vodafone-is-outsourcing-tech-support-2014-11
https://www.mila.com/vodafone

Heart rate measuring hat?

Connected products, wearable technology will be so big, we cannot overestimate the disruptive power it will have to so many industries (like the suitcase I posted and ordered a few minutes ago). It will be very interesting to see how the competition incumbents versus start-ups will play out, and wether fully integrated "ecosystem" solutions or, lego-like "best of breed" products that can be combined with anything will make the pace. Here we have a hat that reportedly uses aerospace technology used on fighter jet pilots to measure your heart rate and calorie burn. And they make a statement out of selling you basically the sensors in a hat - and you can decide which app should then take this data and use it to optimize your runs or activities.

http://www.life-beam.com/product/hat/

Disney - a mobile company

Nice feature on TechCrunch about Disney becoming a mobile company. Especially the part about the atomization of content is relevant not only for every publisher, but for anyone who makes digital business of any kind. The author says: "I've become a bit absessed with this idea of pieces of content that are atomic units unto themselves. The concept of an 'article' or a 'website' being the base unit of measurement for content strikes me as largely over."
Couldn't agree more.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/16/disney-a-mobile-company/



Selftracking suitcases

In 2014, we lost a full passenger jet. Maybe in future, we won't even lose a suitcase anymore. The internet of things, the sensornet, however you call it, will make conncted products possible, and whatever is connected will potentially be located. The thing will also weigh itself, charge your devices and do some other fancy stuff. I love the idea and a few others do so, too: The self-location-tracking and connected suitcase passed 1mn funding on Indigogo (asking for 50k). I wonder how the likes of Samsonite and Rimowa will receive this message.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/17/bluesmart-indiegogo/
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/bluesmart-world-s-first-smart-connected-carry-on



Facebook.com/places - a step into local search?

Apparently already this summer, but hardly noticed by any tech blog, Facebook launched a local places directory, available here. Maybe it is not uber-useful yet, but people-driven recommendations, especially by friends, always beats simple directories. Curently it's just a hint what Facebook could do with the exhaustive data they collected, but obviously they will have some other priorities first.

https://www.facebook.com/places

Facebook continues to optimize newsfeed - and their ad revenue

Although I haven't really felt any remarkable improvement on clickbaiting (still a lot of "20 letters from children to their fathers - no 19 will break your heart"), Facebook does not stop to try and figure out how to make your newsfeed more relevant. Now it's about promotional content by fanpages that makes organic posts in newsfeed feel too promotional, and Facebook says this comes from feedback during the frequent surveys that they conduct (and by the way, this means, if you're making hardcore promotions, you should better pay for them). It's about posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app, posts that reuse the exact same content from ads or posts that push people to enter sweepstakes and such with no real context. Meaning for businesses: if you want to promote something, buy ads. Since the amount of ads in the newsfeed is not likely to increase dramatically, for the user, this could play out pretty well.

http://newsroom.fb.com/news/2014/11/news-feed-fyi-reducing-overly-promotional-page-posts-in-news-feed/

Nov 6, 2014

Leistungsschutzrecht reportedly cost Axel Springer 80% traffic

We have enough German media covering the Leistungsschutzrecht desaster, but more interesting is the international view from outside. Search Engine Land reports that Axel Springer suffered a drop of 80 percent in traffic after "opting out" of snippets in Google.

http://searchengineland.com/german-publisher-axel-springer-says-removal-snippets-caused-80-percent-traffic-drop-207500

Xiaomi is the hottest smartphone maker

Everybody raves about Xiaomis success - with low cost smartphones in "developing" markets. The English article linked below describes their business, but misses one point that the excellent German article reveals: Slower update periods for phone models. Xiaomi goes in with a very low price point, but keeps its models for 2 years. Their flash sales are only cycle-stretching activities to keep the phones hip during that long period (Apple and Samsung launch new products in less than a year on average). With a stable consumer price, Xiaomi will earn good margins during the two years once the component prices fall. And they are falling rapidly. So a few cent margin on a phone during its introduction may become a serious market when the phone is at the end of its lifecycle. Smart business.

English:
https://gigaom.com/2014/11/05/why-is-chinese-smartphone-startup-xiaomi-reportedly-worth-13-times-as-much-as-motorola/

German:
http://www.harvardbusinessmanager.de/blogs/wie-xiaomi-der-smartphone-konkurrenz-das-fuerchten-lehrt-a-1000038.html

In-App search could be a game changer

About time: searching within apps. Google made preparations for that in KitKat, but now first results can be seen. Then, search on your phone will get a completely new and higher relevance: if you can find content based on keywords (or whatever) in apps and documents on your phone, the whole logic of app usage may change. And all these unused apps may become relevant again. Of course, there are issues - for exaple to exclude certain apps from phone search etc. But this could be something big for Android.

http://readwrite.com/2014/10/30/ok-google-searches-apps-developers-android

Infographic - The landscape of Social logins

Social logins are an underestimated business since they create a back door for social networks to create real value for companies based on consumer data - and some day, this value will be measured in money. Facebook continues to dominate, and despite some aggressive offers, get further ahead of Google+ logins, according to this Infographic from Gigya.

http://socialtimes.com/facebook-accounts-nearly-60-social-logins_b206068

Spotify making more money for Artists than iTunes?

At least in Europe, according to Kobalt, a company that helps artists to collect royalties. They published numbers that show streaming growning to 10% of the average artist's income and in Europe, Spotify makes more money for artists that iTunes. Most probably, it does not make enough money for artists, but this again shows how "download to own" is slowly dying... and will probably come with other digital media like films, too.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/04/in-europe-spotify-royalties-overtake-itunes-earnings-by-13/

EFF checks messenger security

If messengers are not the next big thing, then they are the current big thing. The great Electronic Frontier Foundation offers an overview / scorecard about messenger security and you can even learn about software you didn't know it existed. At least I didn't know many of the messengers in the list. While FaceTime and iMessage score pretty well, apps like Secret, Viber, Yahoo Messenger, Snapchat, Whats App and Facebook Messenger are not recommended. Best scores? Telegram does well, but winners according to EFF are SilentText, TextSecure, Redphone, ChatSecure+ Orbot and CryptoCat, Now try and find friends on these.

https://www.eff.org/secure-messaging-scorecard

Android TV walkthrough

Every year we expect the "TV screen to be liberated" and "truly connected". Every year-end, we see that it "didn't happen this year, but probably next". I don't know how long this game will continue, but in 2014, we at least saw some new initiatives like Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV. Google overhauled Android TV and we can say: Still no game changer, but everything moves in the right direction. Personally I benchmark TV products against having remote controlled a 47 inch iPhone 6+ or Samsung Galaxy Note 4 in my living room, and I still think that benchmark was not met. Anway, interesting progress here:

http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/05/android-tv-video-walkthrough/

Tinder plus is coming

Tinder has to get into creating real revenue some day. Tinder plus seems to be their answer - a paid service with more features. One of those being a "undo button" that lets you revert an accidental or too quick "swipe left". It will be interesting to see wether a Tinder plus will work as long as "real dating" will be possible with the free version. Typically the freemium model is based on the idea of delivering a limited experience, In Tinder's case that could be a limited amount of messages or matches a day; they seem to choose a different direction.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/04/how-much-would-you-pay-for-an-undo-button-on-tinder/ 

Oct 17, 2014

Second and third screens in SouthEastAsia

Around nine out of 10 commonly engage with two screens simultaneously, and as many as eight in 10 digital consumers in the region engage with three screens simultaneously. 

Does this question really matter to anyone (except TV): which screen is first, which is second, which is third?


http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2375443/social-tv-myth-or-reality

Governments don't get what internet security means

At least parts of our governments. The FBI complains about Apple, Google and all others building encryptions without any "government backdoor". Not knowing that a government back door is nothing else than the same backdoor criminals would use.

FBI:
http://time.com/3514931/fbi-director-implies-action-against-apple-and-google-over-encryption/

Bruce Schneier (someone who understands "a bit" about internet security):
https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2014/10/iphone_encrypti_1.html

HBO, CBS streaming services

It's all about the customer relation, and in my eyes most TV stations are still missing this, HBO and CBS are announcing standalone streaming services. Keen to see how these will be able to support their cost and organization structure once linear TV / TV by appointment becomes a niche, but hey - do they have any other choice?

http://techcrunch.com/2014/10/16/cbs-announces-its-own-live-tv-and-streaming-service-cbs-all-acess/


Update: "make that three" - Univision joins both.
https://gigaom.com/2014/10/16/make-that-three-univision-wants-to-stream-to-cord-cutters-as-well/

Is a software SIM coming - from Apple?

In my eyes more interesting than an iPad Air that is thinner and faster and all that - Apple's announcement of a software SIM where you can switch carriers on the go for best reception and data plans. Although the article states that the physical hardware SIM is too attractive to be severly threatened now - with subsidies for phones - for the future, this could be the end of the few remaining dreams of carriers to more than just a utility, a connectivity supplier. once i can quickly switch to any offer made to me in real time by any network provider, you will see that once connectivity is given, price will be the only thing that really matters. For carriers, this will mean that cost leadership will be essential.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/10/16/apple-sim-details-and-potential/

Oct 15, 2014

Dangers of connected devices

I am so exited about wearable technology, connected devices and all this - but sometimes also a bit scared. As always, legislation struggles to keep up with innovation pace and technology development. This may lead to companies behaving in a way that they exploit anything the legal 'grey zones' allow them to, in this case (link below) it is about Nintendo and its Wii U and some auto loan/rental companies. Good thing there's institutions like the EFF, which I will continue to support, even if I am in Germany and we have similar organizations - but in the digital world, lobbying for citizen and customer rights in the US probably has more impact on my daily life than lobbying at home. Another reason why legislation has to be faster and more adaptive. Especially in a world where products that I buy can be remotely controlled because they are connected with the web.



Oct 7, 2014

If content is king, live sports is the emperor-tenno-overlord

Digital and on-demand may kill linear TV and 'TV by appointment' one day. But there's one appointment that everyone will continue to make: live sports. How else could you explain the enormous, gigantic,  unbelievable 9 year deal (2016-2025) the NBA has just sealed with ESPN and TNT?

It's size is about 24 Instagrams or roughly 1.3 whatsapps: 24 billion USD. That's over 2.5 Twitch's per season. Just to put it into perspective.

I have no idea how you can earn that kind of money back with TV advertising only, even on an international scale since ESPN/TNT seem to have bought the right to market the license to international TV stations. Probably, a good part of the deal will include revenues from League Pass and I am keen to see which other digital products will follow.
This is a monster of a deal and it shows how much the value of content that can reach masses will continue to rise.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nba/2014/10/05/nba-tv-deal-espn-turner/16790187/

Oct 6, 2014

Does Facebook move into user-to-user payments?

Fast Company claims that the main reason for moving users so aggressively to a separate messenger app lies in their move to facilitate user-to-user payments. And, of course, user-to-business payment is not far away from there. They even show screenshots as proof, but anyone could have just made those up. 
Still - it could make sense. With Apple pay at our doorsteps and SMS phasing out, which in some developing countries has essentially been an alternative currency system, this could be an interesting strategy. When you think about 'how to monetize a reach of over a billion people with something else than advertising', you quickly get to ideas that are not typical B2C models but infrastructure - high scalability, low risk, platform oriented, generating a network of parties that benefit from it. I think it's a legitimate theory.

Oct 5, 2014

Utilities of the future

When we say "utility", we think of less fancy commodity products like energy. Or water supply. Interesting thought here about future utilities, including areas where we - currently - see flashy, fancy apps and start-ups: Mobility, Health, Media.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/sarwantsingh/2014/09/09/the-race-to-create-the-21st-century-utilities-the-biggest-opportunity-of-our-era/

Instant expert: real-time bidding

Nice overview on realtime/programmatic bidding and where online advertising is heading. And a nice headline: "buy, buy, baby".

http://www.economist.com/news/special-report/21615872-rise-electronic-marketplace-online-ads-reshaping-media-business-buy

Beats Audio banned from NFL

Either they start paying, or this will get into other leagues, too - the NFL signed a deal with Bose, a high profile headphone maker, and since they control and sell their TV images, they can tell their employees what is not to be shown on TV: in this case Beats Audio headphones. When I compare this with German Bundesliga, DFL, almost everytime i watch it I also see a player wearing one of those. Beats better start making contracts - or sign individual players and their social media channels -, or their competition will buy them out of the sports leagues.

http://venturebeat.com/2014/10/04/beats-headphones-get-banned-from-appearing-on-nfl-tv-broadcasts/

PEW study: How social media is reshaping news

Interesting statistics from PEW research center showing that social media increasingly is becoming a pathway to news. 30% of US adults already get their news via Facebook. It is also interesting to see the difference on different sites: while Facebook struggles with realtime delivery (due to the newsfeed algorithm, there will most probably often also be older stories in your feed), half of those who use Twitter also get their news there. And on Reddit (with of course much less overall users), it is two thirds who consume news.

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/09/24/how-social-media-is-reshaping-news/

Why brands need video

Well, because they conduct Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and maybe even more accounts and need to tell 5-25 stories every day, and they can't all be just about their products and how great they are. In this regard, everyone mentions Red Bull, but there are more and more companies that create their own in-house content studios, and they are right in doing so. In a survey by a firm called "levels beyond", 61% said that they would watch a brand's video if it were shared by a friend. 67% say they like how-to videos and tutorials (which maybe also is a reason why YouTube is the second biggest search engine after Google). At the same time, in this same study, 75% of marketers researched said that they rarely or never produce video.

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2373414/why-brands-need-video

Social logins gain importance

Wether it is the mobile shift or more familiarity with the product and the providers of social logins - first and foremost Facebook and Google - social logins gain momentum. According to a Gigya survey, 53% of people asked had used a social login in 2012. Two years later, that number is up to 77%. And it seems that convenience is the main driver according to the research.

Study excerpt here:
http://www.slideshare.net/Gigya/privacy-personalization-surveyus-onlyfinal

Article:
http://socialtimes.com/consumers-using-social-logins-convenience-security_b204573

Multi Channel Networks may save "old media"

MCNs are hyped for a few years now. It doesn't seem to end, since first experiences esp. with YouTube Channels seem to work out pretty well, budgets go up - no wonder in times where everyone is struggling to connect with 13-25year olds - or older people with a similar media behaviour. Three-digit-million-evaluations for MCNs have become normal.

http://socialtimes.com/old-media-investing-millions-buy-multi-channel-networks-youtube_b204441

First signs of real change in the TV industry

We read about cord-cutters and Over the Top OTT television a lot, but did not see major TV networks or cable operators get under pressure like music labels many years ago or newspapers in the past decade. We know that fundamental change is about to come, but do not know how exactly it will play out. Read an interesting piece about a small cable operator from St. Louis "de-listing" Viacom channels, while at the same time Viacom sells its channels to an OTT service coming from Sony somewhen in the near future. Once sacred business relations are disrupted. The avalanche is starting to gain momentum.

http://time.com/3453612/viacom-suddenlink-fee-dispute/

How we find apps to download

Assuming, "we" act similar to US iOS and Android users who were focus of a study that is only available after registration, so i'll stick to the TechCrunch article linked below. App discovery is a scandal, and there's statistics to document it. Roughly half of people find apps through (in may ways: terrible) app store searches, while "friends/family recommendation" and "read about it in the web" as #2 and 3# rank better in this research than "an app store's top list". So you will need to master the dark witchcraft of app store SEO and/or get people to talk and brag about it.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/10/03/roughly-half-of-users-are-finding-apps-via-app-store-search-says-study/

Sep 29, 2014

If not Ello, something else?

We need a new Gartner Hype Cycle for social networks. For me to even hear about the existence of Ello, get an invite and then read articles about why it won't work, it already sold its users by taking venture etc. it took less than 48 hours. But the Ello-Mania during thelast few days shows one thing: There's a market for a Facebook/Twitter alternative. I don't know if the real name policy is the decisive thing here, like in the article linked below, but people seem to be ready to accept some new platform in their lives. Interesting to think about which concept could prevail.

http://mashable.com/2014/09/26/ello-facebook/

Imgur native ads

... seem to get a very high engagement. Compared to people I have heard talking about Buzzfeed and Vice and all these others, I hear very little talk about native advertising and branded content. Imgur's integration is a good example, and according to AdWeek, their native ads work pretty well.

http://socialtimes.com/imgur-native-advertising-engagement_b204311

Sep 20, 2014

Context as a search preset, here: TV

I had a lot of discussions about how creepy and how great GoogleNow is. It is already using a technology Google just patented to know what you're watching right now on TV. So search may give you different results for keywords when you're watching this or that show. That's context, and it will be the future: Services behaving in dependence to what I am doing, thinking, wanting.

http://searchengineland.com/google-patent-explores-using-tv-viewing-search-ranking-signal-203482

400 miles of cable to deliver WiFi in a football stadium

The 49ers Levi's stadium is an interesting experiment - connectivity over mobile is traditionally bad where tens of thousands of people meet, and WiFi in a sports venue has vast opportunities. Then again, we don't really what people will actually use it for. So observing the 49ers effort may hold some great learnings for others who will offer Internet in a stadium. Here's a story about the guy who built it:

http://www.wired.com/2014/09/man-wired-facebook-helped-build-nfl-stadium-future/  

InVision: The UX app

User experience, in my opinion, is a lot more important than "design" in terms of beauty. There are several sites that look ugly but get their job done properly, and these are a lot more successful than beautiful sites that are just 99% user friendly and not 100%. You cannot overestimate the importance of UX. No wonder there is software that helps app makers to create the best experience possible, and one of those is InVision, portrayed here in Wired:

YouTube drives more sales than Facebook

Says a study. The research from AOL platforms tracked data from 500 million clicks and the stats refer to pais advertising on social media. So it tries to compare YouTube preroll with a Facebook ad or sponsored Tweet. Anyhow, it seems that YouTube advertising can work very well.

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/news/2364597/youtube-drives-more-sales-than-other-social-media-platforms-study

Business Insider slide deck: Mobile payments

Apple Pay may become big in the US pretty quickly. Business Insider gives us a (short) slide deck with some background on mobile payment. And I still wonder why I don't have a mobile Amazon checkout in any store (who I trust with my payments a lot more than Apple) and where PayPal wants to be in a few years.

http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-pay-mobile-payments-and-nfc-why-mobile-payments-are-back-from-the-dead-deck-2014-9?op=1

First Vine comedy star

There's a guy on Vine with 4mn followers

http://mashable.com/2014/09/03/kc-james-visits-mashable/

and he's making a living on that social network now. Besides YouTube, social networks are becoming distribution platforms for video content, enabling people (and one day, when they get it, incumbent publishers) to earn real money.

http://mashable.com/2014/09/03/kc-james-visits-mashable/

How (often) we use apps

Some interesting statistics in this research by Localytics about how often we open apps (in a month) from certain categories and how long the session duration is. Music has the highest increase in sessions length as more and more people use music streaming apps, and social networking is still increasing in number of sessions and session durations. And I think the time spent in apps vs. mobile browser - my last number was 84% apps vs 16% browser - will continue to grow for apps.

http://socialtimes.com/report-spending-49-time-social-media-apps-vs-last-year_b203754

Snapchat for Sports

Snapchat hired the former "Director of Digital" from Nike. Apparently to win "Sports partnerships". I think we underestimate messengers as second screens or "one to many communication tools" because communication on them is not visible to the public and concentrated on small "one to one" or "one to some" groups. But the hundreds of millions of people using messengers might enjoy that realtime and non-public component a lot, especially in sports. You Facebook post "goal! yes!" looks awkward like 2 minutes later, but it stays on your profile or on your Twitter timeline forever. In messengers, that's different, which makes them a great second screen tool. Not only for sports.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/09/18/snapchat-scores-nikes-director-of-digital-to-win-sports-partnerships/ 

In a related story, Facebook tests disappearing posts.
http://time.com/3340350/facebook-snapchat-posts-social-technology/

Sep 12, 2014

[Deutsch] Alles über MCN auf Youtube

Ein wunderbarer Überblick über MulltiChannel Netzwerke auf Youtube. Das Ganze kommt aus dem Digitalisierungsbericht 2014 von "die mediananstalten" und ist ein weiterer, schöner Artikel nach dem "Instant Expert"-Muster.

Link:
http://www.gugelproductions.de/blog/2014/sind-youtube-netzwerke-die-neuen-sender.html


Der ganze Bericht als PDF
http://www.die-medienanstalten.de/fileadmin/Download/Publikationen/Digitalisierungsbericht/2014/Digitalisierungsbericht_2014_Web.pdf

Sep 9, 2014

Object recognition in images

This is a highly interesting field. If machines can identify any object on an image without humans being involved, the opportunities - good and bad - are endless. And who came out first in a yearly challenge for image recognition? Team Google.

http://googleresearch.blogspot.de/2014/09/building-deeper-understanding-of-images.html

Deep Dive into Amazon

Nice piece by the Business Insider - an in depth look an Amazon's situation and strategy. I do not subscribe to the skepticism in this article at all. If you make more online sales than the next dozen competitors combined, your position should be good enough. Plus, there's one key sentence hidden in this text: Amazon could make money. It just chooses not to. Because the "war" is not over, it has just begun. If I had a pile of cash on the bank, I would buy their stock. And except for Alibaba, I don't see competitors who could really threaten their e-commerce position.

http://www.businessinsider.com/amazons-new-competiton-2014-9

More "video on Facebook" stats

Facebook's obvious attack on video can be scary for many publishers. These statistics do not make it better:
From May 2014 to July 2014 video views on Facebook exceeded 50% growth. In 3 months. 65% of video views are mobile. More than 1 billion video views per day. Faceboko does not reveal when a video is counted as "viewed", and the autoplay feature may start more videos than users actually want to see. Plus video has been ranked better in the news feed algorithm. But if they figure out (and they will) how to market pre rolls, this will disrupt a few markets.

http://newsroom.fb.com/news/2014/09/the-latest-on-facebook-video/

[German] Games auf dem Smart TV

Smart TVs haben, gemessen an ihrer Verbreitung im Markt, eine relativ geringe Awareness in den Digitalmedien. Dabei wäre durchaus vorstellbar, dass all die OTT-Angebote, die wir derzeit über vieldiskutierte Geräte wie Apple TV, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV und und und konsumieren können, vielleicht zu gleichen Teilen via Smart TV genutzt werden - finde keine Zahlen dazu. Jedenfalls ist eine Zukunft, in der mein TV auch ein Computer ist und ich keine zusätzliche Hardware dranstecke, sehr gut vorstellbar. Das würde dann natürlich mehr betreffen als einfach nur TV Programm auf Abruf. Games zum Beispiel. Wir stehen am Anfang, aber es gibt Pioniere.

http://www.mediennetzwerk-bayern.de/2265/gaming-per-smart-tv-aesir-und-die-tipp-kicker/

Sep 8, 2014

Who delivers 1 Billion Video Views a day? Facebook

Video Publishers, brace yourselves: Facebook is coming. For a market like Germany, it is hard to estimate the real numbers, but it does not seem far-fetched to assume that Facebook could double the existing video inventory within 12-24 months. Which would mean that everybody and their mother would get into video advertising - and marketers would shift budgets from print and especially TV into Facebook - or that CPM for pre roll has reached its peak during the last 2 years and will come under severe pressure since there's so much more inventory that can be targeted to any audience. 

Sep 6, 2014

Most people use only 4 apps

The world is going mobile, and within mobile, they are moving to apps, and within apps, they just use a few. Makes competition harder.

http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-most-people-use-only-4-apps-2014-9?

UK: Shopping sites geht more traffic from mobile than desktop

We will see more and more of these headlines. While actual transactions completed on smartphones and tablets are just a bit more than one third, the visits on online shopping sites on mobile have reached 52%. Still do not offer a responsive site? Or better yet, only offer a responsive site? Think mobile first.

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/sep/02/online-shopping-mobiles-overtakes-desktop

Sep 4, 2014

What will wearables do to luxury watches?

The unbelievable wearable growth, Android Wear and the upcoming launch of an Apple smartwatch will have an impact on a few markets. First of all, just like with cards in my wallet, I do not have unlimited space on my arms. I won't wear three devices left and right and clip a steptracker to my underwear. It will be an all-in-one game, probably. On the one hand, we use to wear fashion accessories on our wrists. On the other hand: status symbols. Watches that cost as much as the car the guy next to you is driving.
Both may come under pressure. Fashion meets tech, but more importantly, luxury gets a new definition. No matter how rich you are, you won't be able to have a better phone than I do. Yours may be in a massive gold shell, but it will weigh more and your Minecraft, YouTube or Facebook will be exacvtly as good as mine. If this happens to watches, the likes of Rolex, Hublot and all those others may sense severe pressure. Personally I believe that the very expensive watches, more used as a financial investment than a timekeeper, may survive this. You don't have to wear your Patek Philippe everyday to value it. and you're simply holding on to it until the next generation takes over (wonderful campaign). But the "up to 5,000USD" range may get into difficulties. Or, as Jony Ive puts it: The iWatch may sink Swintzerland.

http://www.theverge.com/2014/9/4/6104871/jony-ive-thinks-the-iwatch-will-sink-switzerland

full article on wearables:
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/04/fashion/intel-and-opening-ceremony-collaborate-on-mica-a-stylish-tech-bracelet.html?_r=1

Elvis goes iBeacons

OK, not Elvis himself. But Graceland embraces new technology. Imagine what you can do not only in museums, but in shops or airports or sports stadiums with this.

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/news/2361733/elvis-presley-s-graceland-looks-to-ibeacon-technology-to-boost-tourism

Social Networking in the US by Age Groups

Penetration is incredibly high, of course. But now also the age bracket 65+ (in the US) has a social networks penetration of 50%+. Nice stats/research from Business Insider.

http://socialtimes.com/social-networking-officially-gone-mainstream_b202845

Youtube audience: Teens or Yuppies?

Both, of course. And everyone else. But there are some strange numbers circulating. While my impression is that particularly teens and millenials value YouTube higher than TV and anything else - note that 3 of the worldwide top 5 channels deal with gaming, that teens have a YouTube-biased view of celebrities etc., Nielsen statistics say that YT reaches more 18-34 than any cable network - other studies show a different "main audience". A research published by YouTube itself for Germany, where 1500 people were asked, is headlined that the common German YouTube user would be over 30, has a high average income, is digital savvy and likely to go out and spend money on restaurants and gadgets. Sounds strange to me. Very much like a "don't spend money in print or TV, buy YouTube ads"-cry to advertisers as they have teens and millenials in their pockets anyway.

Odd German stats:
http://meedia.de/2014/09/03/ueber-30-und-mit-gutem-einkommen-das-sind-die-deutschen-youtube-nutzer/

YouTube viewership by age group and category like comedy, sports, news, music etc.
http://socialtimes.com/youtube-reaches-18-24-year-olds-cable-network_b202851

30 Old-school high-tech commercials

I love innovation products from the past, especially those that failed, not only for their entertainment value but also for the fact that they remind us to look twice when the next uber-cool new piece of connected something hits the kickstarter market. And in 30 years, people will look at some of today's products how we look at these: check out 30 great commercials on TIME.

http://time.com/3257899/old-tech-commercials/

Sep 2, 2014

Facebook targeting by network connection

Facebook's ad targeting is insane anyways. You can talk to managers about how important Facebook is, how they have 1.3 billion monthly active users, how 250,000 photos are uploaded there and the like button is being used a gajillion times per minute. All this is so far beyond our ability to understand, you could make other numbers up and they would have the exact same effect, as long as they are huge. If you want to impress someone who is not super-familiar with Facebook: Sit together with them and simply book an ad together. Show them the targeting options and they will understand the platform immediately. And as if targeting would not be good enough yet, they keep adding useful stuff: Now the network connection. Linking to an HD video or your 138 MB app download? Don't advertise to people who are on 3G. Simply great.

http://allfacebook.com/bandwidth-targeting_b134184


Underestimated in Europe: Reddit AMA

I don't know Reddit's exact traffic figures, but I wouldn't be surprised if a large part of their traffic came from Europe. The headline means the business world. I around 1 million social media and business discussions I have had in the last years Reddit maybe came up twice. Especially "Ask me anything", known as AMA, is a great format that should have been copied and applied to their own sites by many publishers already. But since they won't see the difference between a chat and AMA, which requires basic knowledge of marketing, positioning, branding and community management, let Reddit make it bigger and bigger, and rightfully get what they deserve. Now with a dedicated app:

http://www.theverge.com/2014/9/2/6096229/reddit-releases-official-ama-app

Disney values VICE media at 2.5bn?

I am not so sure about this. Vice is on top of all that "new new media" hype stories, but will they ever even make 2.5bn turnover one day - not to say reach a "real" company value of that size? Maybe I am not smart enough, maybe I can't see the strategic angle of Disney investing in them that will allow saving revenues and profit at other ends of their business, or it's just one of those hypes. Now Fox owns 5% (purchased at a 1.4bn valuation last year), Disney and Hearst (owners of A&E who actually bought the stake) now have 10%. For 250 million. Maybe that's a business model: Sell 10-15 pieces of a few per cent of your company at crazy valuations. Let them deal with the fallout.

http://gigaom.com/2014/08/29/vice-media-sells-a-10-percent-stake-to-disney-and-hearst-valuing-the-company-at-2-5b/

CRM future in the light of big data

If you think about how data production and collection evolved over the last few years, it is funny and sad how little you read about the evolvement of CRM - which is based on data collection, analysis and data-driven action. Here's an interesting read from Peter Perera, named "we need an internet of not-only customers", laying out the concept of poly-identity (which i can strongly support) and its connection to graph databases / big data. Great read!

http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/we-need-internet-not-only-customers

Global app market overview

Here's a nice aggregation of facts from studies, researches and reports from a wide variety of sources, compiled into one nice overview about the app / "mobile" / touchscreen market as it is today.

http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/overview-mobile-apps-market-why-you-should-enter-now-0

Activity tracker for football (soccer) goalkeepers

Two reasons for this post:

1. specialized tracking in a B2B context can be a huge market (and also a Union issue, although not for goalkeepers)

2. the lamest and most boring video ever to describe an exciting invention

http://www.wired.com/2014/09/recording-the-frenzy-of-soccer-goalkeeping-1000-times-a-second/

Great use for computers: read stuff that's too dry for ourselves to read

Especially useful in science. Found this link again via the great John Batelle.

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg22329844.000-supercomputers-make-discoveries-that-scientists-cant.html#.VAXeJtJ_vco

Twitch: Need to know

"Instant expert" articles are a great invention. Here's one for twitch:

http://www.engadget.com/2014/09/01/twitch-explainer/

Research / Study - The Internet of things: consumer adoption

Interesting report from acquitygroup about the adoption of "the internet of things" from a consumer perspective. Not that you wouldn't think of these things by yourself: huge market opportunities, ease of use decisive for consumer success, providing real vale etc. But it's nice to see that backed up with numbers and statistics. Access to PDF/whitepaper:

http://www.acquitygroup.com/docs/default-source/Whitepapers/acquitygroup-2014iotstudy.pdf?sfvrsn=0

Video games become a spectator sport

Twitch sold for a billion, 3 of the five most popular YouTube channels come out of gaming - there is a huge trend in gaming becoming content that you can passively perceive just like watching a movie or a football game. Twitch has more traffic than HBO Go, and half of the visitors spend 20+ hours on the site - per week.

http://time.com/3199764/video-games-come-of-age-as-spectator-sport/


Very nice overview in RWW about video games as the next big thing in content:

http://readwrite.com/2014/08/29/livestream-gaming-amazon-disney-google-twitch

Intel's CEO on wearables' near future

Wearables are exciting. They open a new category for computing and will melt many different industries. For example, Intel's CEO tells us to expect new things... at the New York fashion week.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/30/intel-ceo-wearables-fashion-week/

Sep 1, 2014

Past and present of Virtual Reality

Or "The rise and fall and rise of VR", as The Verge puts it. Great read, extensive piece - learn about the ancestors of Oculus Rift and all the other glasses and head-mounted devices.

http://www.theverge.com/a/virtual-reality

China's smartphone internet

Great TNW article about China's mobile ecosystem - the biggest smartphone market in the world. iPhone users have an experience pretty close to ours, but on Android - without an official Google Play market, there are six local app markets that are dominating the distribution of apps, WeChat, TenCent and others being heavily involved. Very interesting read.


Smart cars - and the risks involved

Interesting BBC piece about mobility today and how cars are not computers on wheels but more like a network of computers on wheels - and what the risks may be if you fully connect them to the web.

Top 100 YouTube channels make close to 10bn views in a month

Unbelievable numbers again from YouTube. Their top 100 videos made 9.6bn (!!) video views in July 14. That's 80% growth YoY. The most popular channel? A Swedish gamer, running a channel named PewDiePie. Second? DisneyCollector with toy unboxing videos.
Then comes Shakira, then two more gaming channels. No Viacom, no Disney, no ESPN, no huge network.




Will Apple launch mobile payments?

Everyone is expecting the iWatch - and it may very well come. But maybe the time has come for a disruption in mobile payments. Interesting overview with insights in studies and research with regards to market maturity suggests it's about time:



Finally, Swatch gets into smartwatches

15 years ago, I would have bet that Swatch would lead this category (anyone remembers Swatch .Beat?). Well, 15 years ago everything in the digital world was very different. But still, I cannot see a better fit for any watchmaker with regards to brand and positioning and the wearables trend than with Swatch. Keen to see what they will come up with - fitness tracker of course, but what else? - and how the market will look next year.





Aug 27, 2014

The future of cinema

There are a million opinions about the future of cinema. Wether it will die or not, wether people love to watch with others or not - and no one really knows anything. Then why not ask film heavyweights - directors and producers? Here's ten opinions from George Lucas, David Lynch, Keanu Reeves and others.

http://thecreatorsproject.vice.com/blog/10-expert-opinions-on-the-future-of-film

Aug 26, 2014

Mobile E-Commerce grows fast

About three times faster than overall e-commerce, says Business Insider. Although mobile is still a small part of the overall market (US: 11,1%), its share is growing rapidly - the mobile shift, again and again. In the US, mobile commerce grew 48% year over year in the second quarter, now being an 8 bn USD market.

http://www.businessinsider.com/mobile-commerce-is-exploding-2014-8

Our phones are full already - and our minds, too

Here's one reason why being early is sometimes a great thing: We hardly seem to install any apps on our smartphones anymore (and installation is just a prerequisite for usage). Some 65% of smartphone owners do not download and install any app in any given month. So when you think you'd have a 100 million people market on Android or iOS, it is actually 35 million.

On top of that, apps seem to become even more than ever before a short tail business. Unbelievable 42% of our whole app time (on average) is spent on the single most used app on every smartphone (in my case, Facebook). Not the most promising time to start an app business, one might think. But because of still growing smartphone penetration, the overall number of downloads is still far from declining. So it just gets harder, but remains promising to make business with apps.

http://time.com/3158893/smartphone-apps-apple/

Mobile Shift in advertising

Facebook and Google rule in mobile advertising, but the rest of the world, both advertisers and suppliers, are waking up. For Opera, best known for their browser, mobile now makes more than half of their ad revenue.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/22/opera-mediaworks-is-big/

Mobile Shift in CRM

The mobile shift will change exactly this: The entire internet as we know it. And of course CRM. And CRM software. The article linked below does not look at the mobile consumer, but at the mobile employee, who brings his own device / BYOD and is steadily on the go.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/23/salesforce-may-still-need-a-little-help/

No more clickbaiting on Facebook

That's at least the promise from Facebook's latest changes to the newsfeed it announced today. Personally I see it as a way to ensure relevant and quality posts in your newsfeed - and throw the traditional publishers a bone. And everyone else who tries to reach an audience with "better" journalism and content.

http://newsroom.fb.com/news/2014/08/news-feed-fyi-click-baiting/

Twitch sold for a billion

"Amazon, not Google" buys Twitch (that's how The Verge puts it). Anyone remembers the fish playing Street Fighter from a few days ago? That was Twitch. It is roughly 3 years old. Today, its roughly 55 million unique visitors (per month) view more than 15 billion (!) minutes of content. The great thing about Twitch is that both me and you, professional gamers as well as huge game tournaments can stream their content and find a game-loving audience. And Amazon wants to get deeper into gaming, as it is just another way to win "the war for the living room".

Why it makes sense for Amazon to buy Twitch:
http://www.theverge.com/2014/8/25/6066509/why-it-makes-sense-for-amazon-to-buy-twitch

Amazon press release
http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=176060&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1960768&highlight= 

Aug 21, 2014

Meet DERP, the data API

Here's something I'd like to read from Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest - access to their data for universities through a public API to help understand dynamics of social networking better. In this case, Reddit, Imgur and Twitch team up to do exactly this (twitch drew some attention in the past days with fish playing Street Fighter, just look a few posts below). And the nature of these platforms also explains the derp-name .-)

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/aug/18/reddit-imgur-twitch-derp-social-data


Derp: http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/derp

What has 684% YoY growth? Wearable bands

Impressive numbers for wearables. 'Connected' bands like Fitbit and Jawbone grew over 600% from 2013 to 2014. These have all the 'intelligence' and computing power in accompanying smartphone apps and are more or less pure data collectors. The 'smart bands' that come with own displays and computing power also grew strongly, but not nearly as much as the 'dumb ones'. Maybe its the price - or people prefer to take control of connected products via their smart phones.

http://www.zdnet.com/canalys-wearable-band-shipments-up-684-percent-fitbit-and-jawbone-lead-7000032848/

Twitters Video ads seem to work

That's according to the few agencies testing them. Although in Germany Twitter does not have too many users, the 'golden years' for online TV might be over soon. A few years ago, they delivered a remarkable share of the overall inventory for online video (of a certain quality), so advertisers were drawn to them naturally. With Twitter, Facebook and others who do not capitalize on video inventory necessarily, but simply on their reach and session durations by playing video ads in their newsfeed, prices (CPM) will get under pressure and 'new' (CPC like in Twitter's case) models will have to be introduced.

http://mobile.blogs.wsj.com/cmo/2014/08/20/twitters-new-video-ads-impress-marketers/?mg=blogs-wsj

Aug 20, 2014

78% of mobile searches for local business info result in purchases - PC only 61%

Very interesting study by the "Local Search Association". The research is based on 8,000 US adults, so maybe we cannot transfer just every number to Europe and Germany, but interestingly enough the mobile shift takes over here, too: More searches for local business information from mobile devices lead to purchases than from tablet or desktop/PC. The study is all about "the last mile" before a purchase, and here we have results that show the mobile is not the preferred device - but obviously the most effective. And that, differently from general smartphone behaviour, searches for information are rather conducted in the browser than in the app (but a reason could be that the Google search on you mobile phone might seem like a browser search to most people).

http://searchengineland.com/study-consumers-increasingly-turn-mobile-varied-media-combinations-last-mile-200283 

Google made 890 changes on search last year

Question to these many companies who relaunch their websites and then let them rot for 2-3 years, just to plan another big relaunch... can you remember a Google relaunch? Or an Amazon relaunch? No? Probably that's because there was none.

They keep working on the product continously - and with frightening speed. 890 changes is close to three a day. Including Saturdays and Sundays. And holidays.
Constant improvement is critical. And to honour Google's 10 year anniversary of their IPO: Here's their 10 biggest changes since going public:

http://searchengineland.com/google-made-890-improvements-search-past-year-201065

Content is king, and content dustribution is his Queen

The article itself is not that sensational, I just wanted to save the headline.

For the record:
http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/content-may-be-king-content-distribution-definitely-queen

Our phones will be, among other things, desease detectors

I don't know about the success chances of this particular startup, but I strongly believe that "eHealth" will mainly happen on wearables and smartphones for the foreseeable future.

http://www.wired.com/2014/08/biomeme/

Is Snapchat planning a news network?

Websites and blogs are persistent, but news are not. So why organize them there? Not the 15page analysis of how America's police force got militarized and what that could mean to democracy and society, but simply news: They come in tweet-lengths, so why not as "snaps"?
I am keen to see this thing launching.

is GoogleNow a killer app?

Many people may underestimate GoogleNow, and I agree it is sometimes creepy. How does that god**mn phone know all that? On the other hand, it may be overestimated - I have not made up my mind yet. This guy here sees it as a threat to media companies, and it's worth a read.

http://gigaom.com/2014/08/19/if-youre-a-media-company-your-mobile-competition-isnt-other-news-entities-its-google-now/

How effective is content marketing? Uberflip launches "Content Score"

There's a megaton of data that could, maybe, somehow, eventually tell you how your content performs with regard to marketing objectives. Software company "Uberflip" tries to make that megaton manageable with a "magic formula", as they call it. Check out the video, it may not only be relevant to content marketing, but also to publishers.

http://hub.uberflip.com/h/i/19298129-introducing-uberflip-content-score/15825

Fanta creates own "vine show"

Now that Vine finally allows you to upload videos from your phone, we will see a lot more businesses using it. Live uploads are just not feasible for companies with approval processes. Fanta created an own sho. Just another sign that it gets harder and harder for brands to connect with teens, who have their own media world.

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/news/2361098/fanta-creates-all-vine-comedy-show-to-engage-teens

Uber becomes your... delivery boy, too

Checking Uber's blog with regards to their API launch, I stumbled upon this thing: As others struggle with same day delivery (check ebay now), Uber has an entire workforce on the streets that, if waiting for assignments, just costs money. Ideally, Uber's cars would be driving 24/7 on some customer request. So why not fill in the gaps with delivery? The only flaw I see (if this takes off) could be a car shortage for people who want to actually get a ride. You can get anything from condoms to diapers and envelopes. No cash required, everything is accounted via Uber.

http://blog.uber.com/cornerstore

A 24" tablet is a great idea

I don't get why my TV is dumb. And why I can't have a Samsung Galaxy XL-S5 with 47" in my living room. If it had some HDMI ports and would be able to switch between TV and megha-smartphone on my wall, I wouldn't ask for much more.
Maybe we're getting there: Here's a 24" tablet that makes a TV obsolete.
(If you can live with such a "tiny" screen)

http://time.com/3145964/fuhu-big-tab-tablet/

Uber's API, again brilliant

I have said it on various occasions that I firmly believe in APIs - thinking of your services and products as platforms that allow partners to integrate and leverage your and their business - is a misunderstood, underestimated, huge business opportunity for many companies out there. But most lack both the strategic and first and foremost the technical skill to tap into this business. So it's again innovator time. In this case: Uber. Launching with 11 partners and allowing them to integrate Uber's services into their apps. Win-win-win (the third win being the customer), "lose" for taxi businesses and Uber's competitors.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/20/uber-api-part-deux/

Two fish play street fighter

"In case you were wondering, this is precisely what the internet is for". Funny line from this TC-article, but there's more to it that meets the eye. Two fish swin in their aquarium, all the time, and some technology translates their position into street fighter activity, so both fish can "play" against each other. That would already qualify as art, I could bullshit like 5 hours and sell the installation for a million, but unfortunately it isn't mine. It's on twitch.tv, and that's something any digital-video-person should have in mind. It's like a "huge niche long tail Youtube" with a live element. And high relevance for advertising.

http://www.twitch.tv/

fish
http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/20/7000-people-are-watching-two-fish-play-play-street-fighter/

Puma hashtag campaign went wrong

The idea was not that bad - get a 'personal' autograph by a Puma player by sending a certain hashtag. But as always when user generated content is incorporated into campaigns, and be it just a username, it can lead to rather strange results. As you can see in this typical buzzfeed collection of bizarre 'autographs'.

Aug 18, 2014

Sharing sports video online

The Premier League just announced they are developing GIF crawlers and Vine crawlers etc. to end "illegal video sharing". I agree with the article linked below that it is a rather stupid idea - although I understand the reasons. One major source of income for sports leagues and governing bodies like FIFA, UEFA, NBA etc. comes from TV - sports events are most of the few contents that still work as "TV by appointment". In Germany, the whole top10 of the TV shows with best all-time ratings are football (soccer) games. In France, it's 9 of the top10 and so on. So what the Premier League tries to do here is to protect the value of their TV live and replay products. Already two years ago I wrote a piece about the NBA and why I think that yesterday's highlights will boost today's live ratings. But I understand that when social sharing of LIVE TV gets too accessible, this might hurt the TV stations which are over-paying for their rights. Still, a fan who wants to share his passion about something that just happened in a sports match should be considered a chance and not a threat. So instead of dedicating resources to Vine crawlers, maybe one should thnik of developing sharing tools that give the rights holder some control - and motivate others to want to see the full live picture, too.

http://gigaom.com/2014/08/15/can-you-share-sports-videos-online-premier-league-says-no-but-its-not-clear-why/

The future of payments - Slide deck

The Business Insider slide decks are always full of useful stats and insights. 15 years ago, I would have bet everything I had that by 2014, at least 75% of my payments would be digital and non-cash. We're getting there, but slower than expected.

http://www.businessinsider.com/the-future-of-the-payments-industry-2014-slide-deck-2014-7

Will no one win the messaging war?

When Facebook invests 16+bn USD, one should take the field they are investing in very seriously. So latest with the acquisition of Whatsapp, it should have become obvious that messaging would be one of the next big things. Look at the growth rates: User sessions increased 203% during 2013, and the services are growing at around 15% - per quarter. RWW sets up a 4-part series about "the future of messaging", and the first part is already worth reading - claiming that no one will win the messaging war.

http://readwrite.com/2014/08/13/messaging-apps-fight-texting  

Charging a phone with ambient sound?

I recently read a post that said "remember your first computer?" (in my case the Commodore 64, but maybe we shoulkd count my Atarai 2600 and Intellivision game consoles, too). "Think about how archaic it feels now. That's how a kid today will remember the iPad in 20 years."
I cant wait for the next 20 years to happen .-)
Maybe we will charge our devices via sound - so we won't be thinking about charging anythnig anymore:

http://mashable.com/2014/08/14/charge-smartphone-with-sound/

Study about push notifications

Contrary to popular belief, you have not achieved much when you get a user to download your app. Usage is the only thing that counts, and yes, download and install are preconditions, but not much more than that. So to many app providers, push notifications are vital to ensure an ongoing app usage. Considering the importance of the field, there are suprisingly few studies. Maybe that's because the results are all too obvious, like in this case:

Users only want to receive push notifications that are relevant, time-sensitive and valuable.

Turn any YouTube video into a GIF

The web is full of GIFs. In the business and advertising part of the web, it isn't. Which I don't get. But anyway - here's a handy tool if you want to play around with GIFs.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/16/turn-any-youtube-video-into-a-gif-by-just-adding-gif-to-the-url/

Aug 15, 2014

Gartner Hype Cycle 2014

Always interesting to see an opinion on where which technology stands currently. We are hearing about innovations a lot earlier than a few years ago, so estimating when a technology may become relevant is a skill that gains in importance. My main focus is always the 0-2 and 2-5 year bracket (until reaching 'productivity plateau'), here including gesture control, speech recognition, 3D scanners, enterprise 3D printing, cloud computing and NFC. 

Celebs on Twitter should talk more to each other

says Twitter. Builds a tool for it. And they are right.

http://mashable.com/2014/08/14/twitter-verified/

YouTube's stats are insane

Here's what they published lately.

Every person on Earth watches nearly one hour of YouTube a month - on average (6 billion hours watched per month). Since it's just over one billion unique users, the average (!) time seems to be around 6 hours / month.

100 hours (4 days+) uploaded to YouTube every minute.

YouTube reaches more US adults aged 18-34 than any cable network (Nielsen).

And mobile makes up close to 40% of the entire viewing time. Factor in that YouTube is available on game consoles, Smart TVs etc.

https://www.youtube.com/yt/press/statistics.html

YouTube stars are a new class of celebrities

I have mentioned before how impressive it was to observe a 13 year-old's media world during our vacation ever since she became a savvy smartphone user over the past months. I understood that their media world is entirely different from mine, and that YouTube stars are considered huge celebrities: just like I see LeBron James or Johnny Depp, they see people you may have never heard of as the biggest stars. A Variety survey among 13-18 year-olds saw 6 YouTube stars in the Top 10 entertainment celebrities.

http://variety.com/2014/digital/news/survey-youtube-stars-more-popular-than-mainstream-celebs-among-u-s-teens-1201275245/


Snowden exclusive in WIRED

Great piece of Journalism in both content and format: Snowden exclusive in Wired.

http://www.wired.com/2014/08/edward-snowden/

Uber banned in Berlin, but still operating

This will be an interesting to see: How will the local laws of "person transportations" and Uber fit together? They just have been banned in Berlin (and a few weeks before, in Hamburg) but are still operating. When your evaluation is >18 billion (!!), you can afford a lawsuit or two.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/08/14/uber-gives-middle-finger-to-ban-in-berlin/

Facebook announces cross-device ad reporting

When it comes to omni-channel (thinking and acting mainly device-agnostic, in comparison to multi-channel, that sees certain scenarios for each device and usage situation) Facebook is so far ahead of the rest... it might even educate advertisers and companies to thnk in that direction. For example with their ad products that will simply reach users where they are. On whichever device.

http://allfacebook.com/facebook-announces-cross-device-ad-reporting_b133919

[German] Netflix und TV in Deutschland

Interessanter Artikel zu Netfilx' bevorstehendem Start in Deutschland, dessen Einschätzung ich weitestgehend teile. Bei Netflix haben sie mal gesagt "Netflix muss schneller zu HBO werden, als HBO zu Netflix werden kann". Damit meinten sie natürlich eine Art "HBO 2.0". Analog könnte man sagen: Die deutschen privaten TV-Sender müssen schneller zum deutschen Netflix werden, als Netflix es kann."

http://www.neunetz.com/2014/07/22/was-der-september-start-von-netflix-fuer-deutsche-tv-sender-bedeutet/

YouTube on the big screen

YouTube is one of the best-distributed services - on any device, Smart TVs for example, game consoles etc., you will find a YouTube app. These get a facelift and I still have the feeling Google is not going "full force" with those. Once they figure it out, the impact on TV and OTT-video companies will be massive.

http://youtube-global.blogspot.de/2014/08/coming-soon-easier-way-to-use-youtube.html

Yahoo! Labs vision of content consumption

Interesting post on how Yahoo! sees the future of content (consumption, distribution)... and clearly, the "omnichannel" perspective is of high importance. Be able to live any experience on any device. Many companies do not really pick up on this, so... recommended read.

http://gigaom.com/2014/08/12/the-future-of-content-consumption-through-the-eyes-of-yahoo-labs/

The shrinking significance of LIVE TV

A simple chart by Business Insoder shows how "TV by appointment" slowly dies. Except for live events like sports, it is simply not convenient enough for us who get everything at their fingertips to mark a certain time in our daily calendars for a TV show that, as we all know, should be available anytime on any device. And that's how people behave on a large scale.

http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-live-tv-is-dying-2014-8

Aug 11, 2014

[German] Zum Ende der Zeitung

Im täglichen Meedia Newsletter ist ganz unten immer ein Zitat des Tages. Nicht selten von Print-Managern, die von goldener Zukunft reden. Blühende Landschaften und so. Wird andere Hintergründe haben als fundierte Analyse und rationale Schlüsse daraus. 
Aber aus der Branche selbst kommen manchmal auch Texte wie dieser, die zwar hier und da sagen, die Tageszeitung sei 'in der größten Krise ihrer Geschichte', aber letztlich doch erkennen, dass es sich um das Ende der Geschichte handelt. Guter Text:

Aug 10, 2014

Kids love video. But TV?

After a vaction with a 13year old that would have to be forced to put away the smartphone and come with us to the beach instead, that would consider watching TV boring because "nothing is on, can i have my WiFi back?" and that would consider LeFloid "the biggest star in Germany, maybe together with some football player" - a guy who (in German!) has over 200 mn YouTube views, close to 2 million subscribers, but hardly anyone over 30 would know him - so after that vacation, I can totally relate to an article with the following headline:

Me: What kind of shows do you like to watch on TV?
Daughter: What's a TV?

http://gigaom.com/2014/08/09/me-what-kinds-of-shows-do-you-like-to-watch-on-tv-daughter-whats-a-tv/

10 good social media presentations on Slide Share

Nothing to add.

http://thenextweb.com/socialmedia/2014/08/08/10-best-slideshares-every-social-media-enthusiast-must-read/

Connected toothbrush

I still don't get why all these insurance companies are not the greatest investors of all these connected products.

http://venturebeat.com/2014/08/08/beam-raises-5m-for-its-smartphone-connected-toothbrush/

Software is eating the world, why not also your CEO?

I have noticed more and more activity towards "Digital Transformation" from HR in the recent years. Not only with regards to BYOD strategies and digital employer branding, but really aiming to transform formerly analog companies into digital companies. I have also participated in a few projects where top-level-management was introduced to the digital world - one needs more, another needs less help, but what all appreciated was not the next 20 min speech about how many users Facebook has, but a hands-on experience, for example using Facebooks ad planner. Or printing something - in 3D. Or seeing a Fitbit in full effect. Or playing around with a Kinect camera. It is one thing to send your guys to the Silicon Valley for a few months, like some German companies did, and another thing to get your management out of a meeting room in front of a computer and - maybe - learn some programming. Because, like this article from RWW states: If your CEO does not understand technology, you need a new CEO. This might become true sooner than many think.

http://readwrite.com/2014/08/06/ceo-technology-software-eating-the-world

Content for social media

Digital media will ultimately kill the known formats for storytelling. The one page newspaper article, the 90 min movie, the 23 min TV episode, everything we learned during years and years of media usage will eventually go away. These formats were created because of the technical and business environment they were placed in; the same happens on social media. We are seeing a high diversity of formats in covering one and the same story. And editors will need to learn to adapt to platforms and their technical and business environment - and still deliver valuable storytelling. Here are a few thoughts on that in a very hands-on fashion:

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2358332/when-content-meets-social-aligning-the-content-message-to-the-social-medium

How Humans respond to robots

My friend Maks wrote a rave post about his encounter with a humanoid robot from Hanson Robotics at Kinnernet Italy. He basically wrote that you forgot you're dealing with a robot. While many people think that is somewhat ridiculous, science suggests otherwise: Read this lengthy piece from PhD candidate Heather Knight.

http://www.brookings.edu/research/reports2/2014/07/how-humans-respond-to-robots

Or a summary in the Business Insider:
http://www.businessinsider.com/heather-knight-social-robotics-paper-2014-8