Quickly: The only way CEOs can understand social technologies is by using them.
Content: I've got bad news for you. You can't understand Twitter, Facebook, or blogging by reading an article in a magazine or a report from your CMO. Sure, they can tell you what they are, but you won't be able to truly understand how they could change your business unless you actually use them.
Social is like sex. It's fun to talk about and read about, but you can't truly comprehend unless you do it.
ECM vendor Open Text announced this morning that it intends to acquire Vignette, provider of Web and transactional content management technologies. In some circles, the acquisition of Vignette has been a foregone conclusion for many months now. Vignette has been an established player for years, with an impressive customer base. But the company’s missteps (a major WCM upgrade that stranded longtime customers, questionable expansions into non-core areas, inconsistent customer service and contact) have left them weakened in a market where they should have been able to take advantage of the lack of size and/or stability of some of its competitors. As a result, Vignette’s license revenues have declined in a hot content management market, and the brand has been devalued despite its strong technology.
I was watching TV last night when one of Apple's iPhone commercials targeting a "persona" or segment came on TV. Love these commercials. Growing their user base requires them to move beyond early adopters.
This one was targeting small business owners. They showed credit card processing (cool!), label printing (ok, that seems hard) and FedEx shipment tracking (ok, very, very useful again and not just for small business owners). I imagine these applications get a lot more interesting with 3.0.
Who will they target next? Doctors? Sales people? Dog owners? Zookeepers? Distributors? Restaurant managers? Ok, sounds far-fetched, but why not? The vast majority of cell phones in the workplace are brought to work by the individual. Let's see more of these commercials - we all need more reasons why our employers should volunteer to pay our monthly data plans. Help us rationalize the purchase and monthly service plans with productivity applications.
Forrester’s IT ForumTech Innovation Demonstrations are your first glimpse at new and alternative technologies that will provide solutions to your current business needs.View innovative products and services selected by Forrester analysts that will stretch the boundaries of what you’d previously thought possible. The Tech Innovation Demonstrations will be hosted in the Technology Showcase at The Palazzo Las Vegas.
During my presentation at Forrester's Marketing Forum on April 23, I previewed Forrester's latest forecast of interactive marketing spend. We expect marketer spend on display media, search, email, mobile and social media to reach nearly $55 billion by 2014.
I had breakfast last Friday with Robert Tas, CEO of Sportgenic an ad network and advertising management platform focused on targeting advertising to sports enthusiasts. He was in Boston meeting some agency partners (although he did manage to catch game 7 of the Celtics/Bulls series while in town!)
He shared a few observations based on ad sales at his business so far this year:
If you're looking for a best practice on developing mobile strategies, take a look at what E*TRADE is doing. They had a successful launch of an application for Blackberry devices last summer. They are following that today with the release of an application for the iPhone and iPod Touch. See their press release. They have some good numbers on how well their mobile service has done to date. Forrester Research will be publishing a more in-depth analysis later this month. Stay tuned.
This week, IBM introduced its first two IT management appliances targeted at small and medium businesses. These first two solutions are part of a family that will eventually cover all the IT management needs of an enterprise, and cover availability and performance (IBM Tivoli Foundations Application Manager) and service desk IT services (IBM Tivoli Foundations Service Manager). The benefits expected are a rapid deployment at a lower cost due to the inclusion of automated configuration and deployment solutions. by itself, this is not really new and neither is it a complete revolution. Years ago, Oculan (now part of Raritan) and off shout of the Open NMS effort, presented a network management appliance for SMBs, with a similar strategy: sell exclusively through partners who can add their own flavor of services to the solution.
I saw this article in the New York Times this morning about a program being run by Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Campaign of North Carolina and based in Durham. A similar program exists in California.
Great strategy for communicating with teenagers. Here's why:
- Cell phones are personal devices, and the majority of teens have them. They are also "private" devices in that teens can send and receive messages without anyone knowing what they are doing.
- The majority of teens are on their parents' cell phone plan. They don't necessarily have a data plan for browsing the Internet - only a minority do, and any purchase of a downloadable application would likely show up as a line item on their parents' bill. They send HUNDREDS of text messages each month. Who would notice one or two to an agency asking questions about sex.
- More than 99% of cell phone are capable of SMS and the majority of teens use SMS so the agency achieves maximum reach.
- Many teens are on "all you cat eat" SMS plans - or should be. In any case, a single SMS does not tend to be expensive. So there is little if any incremental cost to the end user.
- SMS is carrier-independent. The service (information provided) doesn't need to be tested on various carrier networks for phones - it simlpy works on all phones.
- Someone covers the cost of the short code as well as driving awareness of the service, but in the grand scheme of things, it is not that expensive.