Monthly Archives: June 2015

Social Media Marketing : A Ticket To Success

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- Aman Sohi, Manager Content, Trivone Digital

“Social media is the ultimate equalizer. It gives a voice and a platform to anyone willing to engage”, Amy Jo Martin 

Whenever we show interest in connecting with our friends, family or business associates, platforms like facebook, twitter and Linkedin comes to our mind. Over the years, science and technology has grown at a rapid speed, giving way to spellbound inventions. We have always been bamboozled with the presence and use of such inventions. Internet has by far proved itself to be one of the most profitable medium, enabling its users to multitask. Now we can easily socialize with our peers and groups with the help of internet. Social media portals such as facbook, twitter and linkedin enables us to pontificate our thoughts on any trending issue or a general debate. 

If we talk about businesses and brands, advertising has always been an urgent need to gain profit and popularity. Other than some obsolete methods of advertising, businesses use social media platforms in full swing in order to reach their investors and audience. Being active on such platforms gives plethora of options for the brand to explore. 

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There are few factors, which influence business leaders to use social media. It includes:
- Education, especially with regards to social media and the online world.
- Relationships, both with customers and people.
- Motivation 
- Leadership 
- Technology 

Today, presence on social media portals has become essential for every small, medium or large businesses. It’s like blowing your own trumpet, but in a logically appropriate way. Stronger the presence, higher becomes the chances of reaching maximum target audience. If your update has been shared, that’s even better, you seal the chance of engaging a larger group of audience. One of the advantages of making use of the social media marketing is that it bridges the lacuna, which is sometimes created between customers and brands. 

Blending of infographics with good amount of content also increases the chances for brands to reach a wider audience. But the bottom line remains, it is only possible with the use of social media marketing.

Digital Transformation A New Era

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- Mansi Priya, Marketing, Trivone Digital

In the race of technology worldwide, economies are growing at a fast rate. To stay in the competition, one important thing to keep in mind is Digital Transformation. The world is getting increasingly digital everyday in all the aspects of society. It affects both individual businesses and segments of society such as government, medicine, communication etc. But do we know exactly what is this transformation all about? 

According to a market research report by MarketsandMarkets, the global digital transformation market is expected to grow from $150.7 billion to $369.2 billion, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 19.6%. Big giants such as Microsoft, Google, IBM, Apple, Oracle etc. have become the major vendors for the Digital Transformation market. It has become the primary objective of every organisation to know that how is the digital transformation happening in their industry and its effects on their business. 

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Companies vary in their digital maturity, and the ones who are more mature outperform the ones who are not. The leading digital changes require the leadership teams to have a vision of transforming their company to the digital world.

"What we find with digital transformation work is that it’s not really a technology problem, it’s a leadership problem" – George Westerman, Research Scientist, MIT’s initiative on Digital Economy

The initial step for any organisation is to evaluate key characteristics of their business that should go digital instead of manual. An example of such a scenario could be outdated technology. Revamp it, make your current workforce undergo innovation workshops to enable them brainstorm and collaborate with leaders to identify opportunities for digital transformation.

Redesigning a website every few years will not help to compete in digital economy. Organisations need to make more fundamental changes. Digital has raised customer expectations, the speeds of work has increased, patience levels of people have dropped and the list is endless. So it has become essential for organisations to incorporate the necessary changes. 

Tomorrow’s people will have immediate access to much more information as compared with today. Digital enterprises should be able to deliver their services to customers, using their preferred mode of access. The organisations should leverage social, mobile, analytics and cloud as their enabling technologies. Making use of these upcoming new tools to enhance the business process, organisations transform their business models. 

By transforming the business practises to digital organisations can work and perform better. They save alot of cost, time and gain customer satisfaction more than before. Digital transformation has validated to impact the bottom line and stimulates productivity. Businesses that incorporate digital transformation, according to Gartner, will be able to find opportunities and work in seconds. Some of great successes in digital transformation are Nespresso, Marriott, T-Mobile USA. Organisations who invest in new technologies, people and processes, gain great outcomes which include greater profits and market share as well as talent and better brand loyalty by their customers. 

A recently conducted survey by Altimeter group, a specialist research company based in California, stated increased customer engagement, improved customer satisfaction, higher digital traffic, increased lead generation and greater conversion as the top benefits of digital transformation of a business.

So if you are still thinking about whether to make your business process digital, gear up and embrace yourself, because the world is at a very fast pace. Increase your pace to stay in the competition.

Social Media Marketing For B2B Companies

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- Mansi Priya, Marketing, Trivone Digital

In the increasing era of social media the world is getting small. Companies are able to interact with their consumers worldwide through the platform of social media. Brands establish a strong relation and maintain brand loyalty through these platforms. Then why should B2B companies avoid social media?

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There are myths that close the doors for social media for B2B marketing. Many B2B marketers feel that social media is not the right platform for their company or their target audience don't use social media. Some feel that social media is only for young people. These are some of the myths that keep marketers of B2B companies away from social media. 

In today’s era of rapid changes in digital marketing and presence across social media, B2B marketers can’t go very far with traditional methods of digital marketing. Social media is one channel, which can prove to be loyalty builder for B2B businesses. Social media enables B2B companies to feature their credibility and frame a reputation in competitive markets.

By using social media platforms B2B marketers increase the exposure of their company, increase the traffic for their digital marketing campaigns, develop loyal fan following, generate new leads and improve sales. Social media can reduce the existing marketing expenses and provide a better insight to the marketplace. 

Some of the B2B businesses such as Dell, Ford, Microsoft Advertising and GE have done great work using social media platforms for their digital marketing campaigns. It is not necessary for B2B companies to be boring and stick to traditional digital strategies. Big companies have churned out great results with social media marketing. 

Social media marketing gives the marketer an insight about what their consumers are expecting. They can understand how the dynamics are changing, what are the upcoming trends affecting their consumers, how can they establish better relations with their consumers and many more such fields which cannot be accomplished using other digital marketing tools. Social media is an excellent platform to spread a good word of mouth. Good word of mouth helps B2B marketers to generate leads and encourage promoters. 

Digital has changed marketing trends so social media has also affected the current marketing. Social media has changed customer experience and their expectations. So to keep up with the changing trends and keep your customers’ faith B2B marketers should not skip social media marketing in their digital marketing. 

Visual Content : A Pivotal Tool

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- Mansi Priya, Marketing, Trivone Digital

It is easy for people today to find information on internet. But do we know what makes it difficult for them to find out what is relevant? In the busy lives people are looking for information that is relevant and makes their work easy & quick. To make it simple, one crucial part that needs to be considered in a content strategy is Visual Content or Infographics.

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How important are these infographics? 
For marketers infographics is a way to convey their message in just a picture with creativity, which their readers can glance through and get a solution for their problem. It is an important tool in teaching, in business, in giving inspiration and in presenting information. As much as 97% of marketers are using social media for their businesses and out of these, 92% have acknowledged the importance of this tool.

It is not just one person who is trying to deliver his/her message, there are thousands of people who are trying new ways to do the same. So this makes designing an infographic a strenuous task. The challenge is to make your information delivery process attractive. Make your message visually appealing and convey the message with right pictures and graphics. One has to dig deep into the topic and think creatively to deliver the message in a very unique way and outshine the competitor.

It is very easy for the readers to go through images, less time consuming and interesting for them. The message delivered by an infographic is retained by the reader for a longer time. It provides readers the benefit of improved content and makes data processing easier. 

Use of infographics enables the reader to engage with the information being delivered. The creativity involved in an infographic makes the information more appealing to the reader. It shows the valuable ideas, grabs the attention of the reader and easier to understand. By reading pages and pages of words the readers might get bored and turn away, but infographic lessens the boredom and awakens their interest. It delivers information more quickly which is retained by the readers.

We can say that infographics simplify the communication, clarifies the message and makes the communication material compelling and attractive. If you are missing out this tool in your content strategy then think again. Whether an infographic is a huge hit or not, it is always a sound investment in content marketing. As technology continues to progress, more interactive infographics and visual content can come up. This brings an additional layer of engagement to content, which is “snackable” to the readers and retained by them for a longer time.

The Case Against Net Neutrality

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- L Subramanyan, CEO Trivone

"The markets, and not the government‎, should decide broadband speeds and quality"

At the beginning, let me make one point clear; I am against throttling of speeds by broadband operators. Agreed..Ok, so lets move on.
The recent rhetoric on Net Neutrality bothers me in one aspect. We have lived without the government’s intervention on the Internet for the last 20 years, so what is the issue all about? Why should the government worry about who gets to see what and consume what content on the Internet? Isn’t it enough that by these very interventionist measures, the government has already hurt (if not mortally) the entire telecom business? Do we need to kill the broadband access also?

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I am not getting into the debate on Net Neutrality here. Supporters of Net Neutrality, which include the ‘creators’ of the commercial Internet Vinton Cerf and Tim Berners Lee, have argued, very successfully, for an open Internet. So has President Obama, and I hear so has, our own minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. Many of the pro-net neutrality arguments are actually anti-content throttling arguments. And I agree with those arguments.

However, what I do find difficult to agree with is the supposition that ‘someone’ ought to regulate what a broadband company ought to charge? I also find it difficult, consequently, to accept Sachin Bansal’s (and other such e commerce players) withdrawal from Airtel’s Zero rating. Let us look at a scenario. I, as a broadband network, have invested in significant sums to build the network. You, as an ecom player, want to leverage the same by providing free access to people who you want as eventual consumers. So you divert a part (a significant part, possibly) of your marketing spend and pay me, the network and pick up the tab for data charges, of the consumers who come to my portal and I, because you are my customer, provide you a faster access speed.

So what is the fuss?

It would be a crime if I throttled the speed for other consumers who may want to go to some other ecom portal. It would also be a crime if I stopped serving other ecom portals. It would further be a crime if I make you go away from my network if you didn’t go to my ecom portal. I am doing none of these. I am providing a preferential access to my customers. By no stretch of imagination is it curbing anybody’s ‘freedom of speech’. On no account are we throttling innovation (I still don’t understand where this argument even came in).
The pro guys argue that the big guys will muscle out the small guys. But, hey, aren’t they already doing it? That the smaller ecom companies will find it difficult to compete. However, the small ecom companies will become big ecom companies by investments and innovating a smarter way to do things. Broadband access is not the reason why ecom companies succeed or fail. It is execution of business models.

As an entrepreneur, it is my job to reach out to the largest number of customers and prospects in the most profitable way. If a network and an entrepreneur have a business agreement that does not violate the law, then why did flipkart do a volte-face and withdraw from Airtel Zero.

The truth is in perception. It is my educated guess that Flipkart did not want to be ‘seen’ as a company that ‘goes against the fundamental freedom of speech and choice’ and ditto for Amazon, Cleartrip and a host of other companies which wanted to battle perception rather than reality.

The other problem with the Net Neutrality principle is that if everybody has equal access and common speeds, then someone is going to have to pay for it. Which essentially means that either the government will stipulate the prices (which will be a Least Common Denominator) with little or no relevance to the investments made or everybody will suffer, like we are in the Mobile telephony business, where you have bits of hurried conversation between call drops!

On the other hand, if TRAI or somebody with some legal backing could simply stipulate the basic minimum standards for broadband speeds, below which the operator could be penalized, then faster speeds could attract premium pricing, which could then actually subsidize ‘free internet for all’.

My biggest fear is that thanks to the politicization of this Net Neutrality debate, there is going to be a significant drop in the creation of the broadband infrastructure, which is abysmal as it is. This will lead to a greater inequality and deepen the digital divide.
The Indian situation calls for some very drastic solutions. We have to significantly increase the broadband footprint across the country. This will call for massive investments by the existing (as well as new players). Sitting on a pedestal and asking for ‘free internet for all’ is not going to happen till then.

Currently, India has amongst the lowest median download speeds in the world, according to the Global Internet Report 2014 at less than 5MBPS, as compared to a median speed of over 20MBPS in Americas, Europe, China and Australia and over 30 MBPS in parts of Europe and Korea. That should be our biggest worry. If there is anything that can throttle content consumption, it is the lack of infrastructure and not zero ratings. An increased and faster access can empower those on the wrong side of digital divide much more dramatically. So comparing our ‘freedom to choose’ to that of the US or Europe has no meaning, at all. In reality, the Indian consumer even today has little freedom to choose, no recourse to lower-than-promised bandwidth, no recourse to deficient or non-existent service and so on and so forth.

Finally, in India, seldom have we had a reasonable debate on critical issues. Matters are normally settled by burning books (or buses), shrill rhetoric (mostly in the English TV press) which is generally a slanging match with a dangerous ‘nation wants to know’ kind of a question or hysterical sound bytes from a less-than-knowledgeable politician. While the Net Neutrality debate showed all signs of degenerating into one (or all) of the above, one hopes that a larger picture is seen by the powers-that-be. This debate is not, simply not, about freedom. In the larger, and Indian scheme of things, it has to be about access to the net.

Make Your Content Resourceful

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- Mansi Priya, Marketing, Trivone Digital

To have an effective content marketing strategy there should be a written plan for it. Do you know why it is done? It is because one should make content a resource. In today's world the internet is flooding with content. Out of that flooded content there is very limited amount that is actually useful. Don't confuse your reader with too much content, instead provide them with content that leads to a solution.

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There are two types of content present on the internet. One is which the reader just reads and flips to another. The reader reads that because it is interesting to read, catchy language makes the reader read the full information, or good use of graphics is done. The other content is the one which reader reads and retains. That content is the one reader is looking for. (S)he retains that content because it provides a solution.

To make your visitiors turn to readers and tranform them from readers to target audience one should be resourceful in content. Provide solution based content and not just readable content.