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Samsung Flips Out Galaxy Z Fold 2

The full specs on Samsung’s latest foldable phone, the Galaxy Z Fold 2, still aren’t out. What we do know: the second-gen phone features a larger edge-to-edge dual screen design with 7.6-inch displays. It is also considerably thinner, packs a 4500 mAh battery, and an improved hinge designed to withstand opening/closing 200K times. Pre-order begins Sept. 1.

Reblogged 1 hour ago from www.werd.com

An Italian Classic Returns: 2021 IsoRivolta GTZ

It’s been nearly 50 years since a new car bearing the Iso nameplate rolled off the assembly line. That changes in 2021 with the IsoRivolta GTZ, a retro-inspired coupe produced through a partnership between Italian bespoke automaker Zagato & Iso. In its sleek, sculptural lines, the Italian design language is evident—a tribute to the IsoRivolta A3 from 1963. Under the hood, though, it’s all American; powered by a 6.8-liter V8 Chevy—the same drivetrain as the Corvette Z06. Only 19 of these rare multicultural beauties will be made.

Reblogged 13 hours ago from www.werd.com

DSPTCH introduces a range of utility-driven add-ons for its line of bags and accessories

DSPTCH’s ongoing mission to bring new and useful upgrades to their existing bag range continues with their latest straps. The brand has introduced two new models: a Utility Sling that can connect to their line of cases and pouches as well as their Fidlock keychains. The brand has also launched a …

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Reblogged 18 hours ago from www.acquiremag.com

Key Insights: Mobile ads “the hotspot”, advertising growth projections, and customer experience dissected

30-second summary:

  • Mobile ad spending will increase by 4.8% ($4.22 billion) making the total mobile ad spend budget this year to $91.52 billion.
  • Mobile continues to increase its share of digital ad spending, reaching 68% in 2020.
  • The estimated growth for the US digital advertising sphere 2020 that stood at $154.58 billion (pre-pandemic-era) now stands at $134.66 billion.
  • Digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising is on a ballooning pattern as it is expected to account for 33.0% of all US OOH ad spending.
  • Customer experience, retention, success, and customer engagement were the top four priorities.
  • Technology adoption is the divide between high growth and low growth organizations.
  • Email and CRM were some of the most effective tools used for optimizing customer experience and meeting customer expectations.

This week’s key insights give you a clear picture of why mobile ads are the place for your advertising dollars, a revised umbrella view of the digital advertising market, a slice of delight for DOOH, customer experience, and why technology adoption is the way to success.

Mobile Advertising: The reigning advertising “hotspot”

With COVID-19 looming around every corner of the globe, advertising has seen some peculiar dynamics in the US market. Mobile advertising budgets didn’t see the projected growth rate carve into a 2020 reality but it is still a winner amongst other mediums. Emarketer had expected mobile advertising to grow up to $105.34 billion. However, their latest data prediction shows that mobile ad spending will increase by 4.8% ($4.22 billion) making the total mobile ad spend budget this year to $91.52 billion.

Despite this, mobile continues to increase its share of digital ad spending, reaching 68% in 2020. This is a considerable jump from 2019’s 65.9%.

Digital advertising trend: Revised umbrella view

If you take a step back and look at the entire US digital advertising sphere, the estimated growth for 2020 that stood at $154.58 billion (pre-pandemic-era) now stands at $134.66 billion. This is a mere $2.20 billion growth which is heavily reliant on mobile’s projected growth.

Digital Ad Spend - emarketer

OOH advertising

As per March, OOH (out-of-home) advertising had a 3.3% projected growth rate. The pandemic has turned the tables now projecting a 4.6% decline in OOH ad spends. This means marketers will spend roughly $8.25 billion on OOH ads.

OOH ad spend trend emarketer

All these are primarily affected due to lesser footfall outdoors, social distancing, and quarantining. Marketers are more into damage control and salvaging strategies to ensure bottom lines are met with.

What are marketers doing to tackle the challenge?

  • Revisiting their contract clauses to pause campaigns
  • Adjusting their messaging to fit better around social and health-related causes

A slice of delight for digital OOH (DOOH) and programmatic advertising

While OOH is on a downward trend, digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising is on a ballooning pattern as it is expected to account for 33.0% of all US OOH ad spending, reaching $2.72 billion.

Programmatic OOH on the other hand is on a slow uphill climb and will account for just 2.2% of US’ total OOH ad spend. But as programmatic OOH hail from a very small base, even little wins count for this segment.

With all this said and done, businesses continue to grapple at new business while they’re vying for return customers. But are businesses living up to customer expectations? Our next segment will answer this pressing question.

Customer expectations and customer experience: Dissected

Our earlier articles have uncovered some key insights on the importance of customer experience and how customer expectations are rising during uncertain times. Hubspot surveyed 1125 service professionals across the US, UK, Canada, and Australia to understand the state of customer service, teams’ perspectives on customer service, and the tools they use.

These were some key findings:

  • Customer expectations are higher than ever with the British being more demanding as respondents found it difficult dealing with 70% of upset customers
  • Global figures stood at 42% while the USA at 32%
  • 69% of high growth companies track customer satisfaction, compared to 51% of low/no-growth companies
  • Customer experience, retention, success and customer engagement were the top four priorities
  • Email and CRM were some of the most effective tools used for optimizing customer experience and meeting customer expectations

Customer service professionals views on customer expectations

Listening to customers is the key to success

A “customer-centric” couldn’t be any more harped on in 2020. But the truth lies in the stats that speak for themselves. Businesses are listening to customers marginally more. A comparative view of 2019 vs 2020 shows that businesses are tracking customer satisfaction, feedback, online reviews, and NPS scores more actively.

Customer listening methods that help with customer experience

High growth companies are very keen on knowing what their customers have to say. We could safely mention that this also explains why they are “high growth” businesses.

Customer expectations high and low growth organizations

Top four priorities right now: Saving cost isn’t here

Hubspot’s report revealed that even though saving costs is a priority, it isn’t the top priority! Service professionals and C-suite executives have a clear vision that the customer comes first. Which is why their top four priorities were:

  1. Creating a great customer experience (48%)
  2. Retaining customers (45%)
  3. Customer success (41%)
  4. Customer engagement (40%)

Customer expectations high and low growth organizations

Factors like saving costs, training, agent productivity, and using predictive analytics were on the priority list, but as a lesser priority.

Tools of the trade for customer experience optimization

On taking a closer look at the tools and technologies professionals used in 2019 vs 2020, these were some of them:

  • Email
  • Ticketing systems
  • Live chat
  • Helpdesk
  • Knowledgebase 
  • CRM

Email one of the most effective tools for customer service - customer experience building

When it comes to building exceptional customer experience and delighting customers, we observed that the highlights here are – CRM being the frontrunner in 2020 and email being at a consistent high in 2019 as well as 2020. Closer observation of Hubspot’s report clearly points out technology adoption as the divide between high growth and low growth organizations. 

Technology adoption the divide between high growth and low growth organizations - customer experience building factors

CRM: The dark horse

Customer relationship management (CRM) earns a special mention here, the above graphs prove it. A mere 32% of businesses said they used CRM software to manage customer data, this is a very poor 3.3% rise since 2019.

And since we understand the power of CRM and know it’s not just a sales tool, it’s crucial to convey that it keeps everyone at your company, across sales, service, and marketing on the same page about your customers, leads, business forecasts, data, and more. It is an excellent technology that helps craft superlative customer experiences that can increase revenue and profitability.

ClickZ readers’ choice for the week

It’s interesting to see that this week’s key insights and our reader’s interests are so inline. Digital advertising, marketing, and customer interactions have been some of the most engaging articles along with data-driven attribution.

  1. Marketer’s guide to data-driven marketing attribution
  2. Getting social ads right in the new era of digital marketing
  3. Making every interaction with customers matter
  4. Content marketing is more than content creation and distribution

The post Key Insights: Mobile ads “the hotspot”, advertising growth projections, and customer experience dissected appeared first on ClickZ.

Reblogged 19 hours ago from www.clickz.com

1941 Shipwrecked Whisky

Sailors didn’t exactly comfort themselves in the arms of mermaids during long stints at sea. It was booze that got them through, in reality. This particular bottle of whisky comes from the British cargo ship…

Reblogged 21 hours ago from coolmaterial.com

Today’s Steals (8.7.2020): Madewell Allday Crewneck Tee – 60% Off ++

DJI Adds EP Core To Its RoboMaster ’Bot Lineup

With the launch of the new RoboMaster EP Core, market-leading Chinese drone maker DJI adds a new ’bot to its educational platform—an effort aimed at teaching and inspiring the next generation of innovators. Its a four-sensor module with 39 programmable components and support for Scratch, Python, FPV as well as a controller that utilizes AI, giving kids experience with all the elements of STEAM learning while they build, code, and play with their own custom creations.

Reblogged 1 day ago from www.werd.com

Setting the standard: How to rightsize your influencer budget

30-second summary:

  • One of the most common errors a brand can make is investing in the wrong partnership with influencers, which can be costly to both your budget and overall reputation.
  • On average, brands paying based on CPM vs. CPME are overpaying by 262%, according to data from Traackr on paid content from 1,000 Instagram influencers from January 1, 2019 to April 15, 2020.
  • By rightsizing payments to influencers who aren’t delivering value, marketers can reallocate funds to influencers who are truly moving the needle and compensate fairly.
  • Once marketers have created criteria for evaluating influencers to work with, they can come to the table in a better place to negotiate compensation based on performance and not on an inflated rate card.

For years, brands have been operating in a black box when it comes to compensating influencers in their campaign partnerships because there are no set guidelines or benchmarks when it comes to influencer fees nor do most organizations have sophisticated measurement models in place for influencer marketing.

Before the pandemic, influencer marketing spend was expected to reach as much as $15 billion by 2022, but the latest predictions from industry experts say that influencers should expect to make 30% less than last year due to massive marketing budget cuts.

For marketers focused on getting the biggest bang for their buck, how can they  know if they’re under or overpaying their influencers?

One of the most common errors a brand can make is investing in the wrong partnership, which can be costly to both your budget and overall reputation.

This can lead to poor engagement in content by not reaching the right audience or key consumer, or can become completely misaligned if the influencer isn’t properly vetted. With influencer fraud rampant and growing, followers or comments can easily be bought.

However, digging deeper, these metrics alone don’t provide the marketer with enough insights to make informed decisions, leading to wasted investment.

The science behind the spend

On average, brands paying based on CPM vs. CPME are overpaying by 262%, according to data from Traackr on paid content from 1,000 Instagram influencers from January 1, 2019 to April 15, 2020.

Based on a traditional CPM model (the amount a brand would pay to reach 1,000 people), the average post cost was $2,158.

However, if the brands had been using a CPME model (the amount a brand would pay to generate 1,000 engagements), paying based on content performance, the average cost per post (CPP) should have been $643.

The CPME model is preferable because it rewards results and disincentivizes vanity metrics like potential reach.

Undervaluing quality work

While overpaying is a common issue, undervaluing influencers is also pervasive in the industry. Brands could be underpaying, or under leveraging, influencers who are adding value and deserve to be more highly compensated.

With no guidelines or established process for evaluating investments, this can go unnoticed. Of the same 1,000 Instagram influencers, 122 would have been underpaid based on their content performance (569 influencers would have been overpaid by at least 100%).

Looking at YouTube influencers, the situation is even more striking. Among the most active sponsored influencers, the average CPM per sponsored video was $9,735, while the CPE model would have resulted in an average cost per video of $4,417.

This indicates that on average, brands paying based on CPM vs. CPME are overpaying by 572%. Of the 1,000 YouTube influencers, 136 would have been underpaid based on their content performance. A staggering 662 influencers were overpaid by at least 100%.

By rightsizing payments to influencers who aren’t delivering value, marketers can reallocate funds to influencers who are truly moving the needle and compensate fairly.

Being wise with your budget

For many brands, influencer spend is unchartered territory. However, there are key factors in misaligned influencer investments:

  • Poor audience quality: This can result when an influencer potentially engages in inauthentic practices (buying likes or followers) and ultimately means your campaign isn’t reaching your target audience.
  • Misaligned audience demographics: Understanding an influencer’s audience is paramount to reaching your target consumer. An influencer on the surface can have an authentic following and positive engagement, but if you look closer, can have an audience that’s nowhere near who you’re looking to target. By evaluating the makeup of their audience, you can determine if they’re reaching your ideal customer. , it can help you further understand if they’re the right fit for your brand.
  • Brand safety risks: Vetting influencers’ content, online history and persona is one of the most important evaluations you can make before embarking on an influencer partnership. Working with influencers who have had past indiscretions like offensive behavior or derogatory language can profoundly impact your brand and be difficult to bound back from.

Once marketers have created criteria for evaluating influencers to work with, they can come to the table in a better place to negotiate compensation based on performance and not on an inflated rate card.

Additionally, as brands continue to work with these influencers, there will be a baseline to compensate them based on historical performance across campaigns, rather than audience size, to inform future budget decisions, and ultimately, build a strong influencer marketing management program.

Pierre-Loic Assayag is the CEO and co-founder of Traackr, a platform that builds influencer relationship management technology enabling brands to effectively manage, measure and scale influencer strategies, while cutting through the noise on social media. He is passionate about turning powerful ideas into reality using technology. As marketing is being re-invented, Pierre-Loic co-founded Traackr as a way to ease the transition for the modern marketer.

The post Setting the standard: How to rightsize your influencer budget appeared first on ClickZ.

Reblogged 1 day ago from www.clickz.com

Instant messaging has taken over the world, but this is just the beginning

30-second summary:

  • Chatbots will soon be ubiquitous in written business communication, and they present a paradox that flips everything consumers think they know about automation on its head.
  • Customer input to a company is valuable information, and using messaging apps, customer feedback can also become actionable. By interacting with a bot, a customer is leaving an eternal record of their input, whatever it is, in a system that can read, analyze, and internalize the information.
  • Furthermore, instant messaging apps and VoIP present the possibility of integrating video or phone calls into your communication. The combination of fluid written conversation and video has opened the door to digital transmission in many fields traditionally reserved for face-to-face interactions.
  • Instant messaging has a fluidity that resembles that of spoken conversation. This fluidity is coming to good use now, especially for small businesses, which operate by one-on-one interactions, for which investments in big and bulky IT-systems are beyond superfluous.

The conversation surrounding the digitization of society has sounded in classrooms, newsrooms, and marketing departments for decades. During the pandemic, the process was accelerated as instant messaging came to the rescue, earning much-justified praise for helping people maintain connections even at a distance.

If there is one thing the process has taught us, it’s that the future has a way of sneaking up on us. So what will messaging look like, before we even know it?

The value of chatbots

Chatbots will soon be ubiquitous in written business communication, and they present a paradox that flips everything consumers think they know about automation on its head.

Generally, many people think the bots reflect over-automation and less-personalized service. Yet regular, human employees at corporations usually have very standardized, canned responses as well, offering only a veneer of personal service.

Chatbots reveal that the truly important part of the communication between a business and its customers is what the customers have to say, and bots’ role will become increasingly important.

Customer input to a company is valuable information, and using messaging apps, customer feedback can also become actionable. By interacting with a bot, a customer is leaving an eternal record of their input, whatever it is, in a system that can read, analyze, and internalize the information.

Instant messaging apps and VoIP provide an added layer of personalization

Furthermore, instant messaging apps and VoIP present the possibility of integrating video or phone calls into your communication. The combination of fluid written conversation and video has opened the door to digital transmission in many fields traditionally reserved for face-to-face interactions.

Tele-health, yoga-classes, and education are but a few examples of services ready to adapt, and they quickly managed to deploy instant messaging.

Experiences resembling one-on-one interactions, but still taking place at a distance, are essential and more useful than ever before. This will remain true well after COVID, as businesses and individuals alike become accustomed to the efficiency and effectiveness of such interactions.

Until now, messaging has mostly involved replicating real-world communication in the virtual world as seamlessly as possible.

But what if virtual communication were actually an improvement of physical communication? Imagine having a live call with someone across the globe who speaks a different language.

In real-time, the software can recognize the speech, anachronistically translate it, intelligently adjust for tone, prevent misunderstanding, or warn you that you might be stumbling into a cross-cultural faux pas.

The software could be intelligent and integrate with your calendar. As soon as you agree to meet someone for dinner, automatically, a reservation is made at your favorite restaurant and the event is added to your calendars.

This technology will be made available sooner than we think, and messaging apps will be the ones to implement them.

Instant messaging to play a major role in the evolution of communication

Messaging services will become the bridge between impersonal email and human touch. There is a reason messaging apps consume the most significant part of people’s internet use.

Whether consumers use social media platforms, dating apps, or office communication systems, it’s the messaging that gets people hooked.

Instant messaging has a fluidity that resembles that of spoken conversation. This fluidity is coming to good use now, especially for small businesses, which operate by one-on-one interactions, for which investments in big and bulky IT-systems are beyond superfluous.

Though it might not seem like it, society is still new to digital communications. The technology is in its infancy, and companies and individuals alike are still figuring out how to harness it in the best way.

By expanding its functionality and integrating instant messenger services to more facets of society, we improve the quality of the conversation between people, businesses, and institutions—one more step along the path to enhancing society with digital technologies.

Djamel Agaoua is the CEO of Rakuten Viber, one of the world’s largest mobile applications with 800+ million users worldwide, offering a range of features such as one-on-one chats, video calls, group messaging, social shopping, and updates. A veteran executive with a track record of growing innovative global techs, Djamel is a private investor and sought-after board member, advisor, and speaker.

The post Instant messaging has taken over the world, but this is just the beginning appeared first on ClickZ.

Reblogged 1 day ago from www.clickz.com

Fresh & Wireless: Samsung Galaxy Buds Live

Samsung’s Galaxy Buds Live are the brand’s latest wireless in-ear headphone. Available in glossy black, white, or rose gold, these bean-shaped buds fit entirely in your ears. They feature 12mm drivers for full-range audio, bluetooth 5.0 connectivity, IPX2 water resistance, Bixby voice assistant, 6-8 hours of battery life plus an additional 15 hours from the charging case.

Reblogged 1 day ago from www.werd.com