I use Facebook to advertise my business…… Oh is that it?

Going back five years, it was a necessity to have a Facebook page for your business, and yes it was and still is a great platform to show the world your product/service and communicate to consumers. However social media is not a digital platform that stays still, like radio or television, it continuously evolves and with this business’s need to follow. I am not about to say forget Facebook as it still is the largest social networking platform and is the second most searched word on the web, after Google, but I am going to say look at others, maybe gamble, invest in smaller social media to get ahead of the trend, not just follow the trend. For example….

Instagram has had an extremely successful year through 2015 and is a great platform to advertise, however apps such as vine and snapchat are becoming increasingly popular with younger users. Although any of my friends and people around the world use all three, they have a favourite. Target a social media that your target market would use, a great example is the use of car advertisement on YouTube, car fanatics prefer video to picture, as it involves more than just sight. Whatever your product of service is your target market will have a favourite social media, for instance, millionaires prefer LinkedIn to Facebook.

An app I advise organisations to invest in is Periscope, already absorbed by Twitter allows people to broadcast liv streams straight through the app and straight onto their twitter, so people can see exactly what they are doing at the exact moment. With Facebook already investing in this concept, not Periscope, but the same concept it is surely going to be a worthwhile investment.

Of course I know this blog post will be absolutely irrelevant in six months due to new trends and fashionable apps, but that is my point exactly, business’s shouldn’t get too comfortable using the now ‘traditional’ social media platforms, when they could be unused tomorrow. What ever happened to Bebo?


Blogging, a tool in marketing…… The good, the bad.

As a communication medium, blogs represent a significant opportunity to further corporate marketing goals. Consumers often rely on independent opinions in prior-purchase decisions, and often seek out perceived experts through blogs as a reliable source of opinion. Business’ can likewise use the blogs of their suppliers for product information to build relationships. Blogs also offer a new opportunity for corporations to monitor trends and opinions in the marketplace. However misguided or malicious employee blogs have the potential to damage a corporation’s carefully crafted brand. Another harmful effect of blogging to the organization is that customers can voice complaints to the world in an instant as well as experts that can criticize products and corporations which can then influence a potential consumer. Competitors can employ bloggers to attack corporations, or hire bloggers to start negative blog campaigns for no apparent reason, however this is not ethical and can be turned around to hurt the original organization, this information was stated by Joshua et.al. (2008 cited by Millette 2005).

My relfection of digital….

During this final blog post I shall be concluding my opinion on some issues I have previously written about. During this unit; Digital Communications Strategies, I have been able to hear other opinions and gather further information from other people, including people from my course, reading their blogs and other information I have had a better knowledge of some subjects that has given me a better platform to make a true personal opinion.

My first blog; Virtual transactions from the mobile, I opinion surrounding the security of the technology behind virtual transactions and the mobile wallet is still the same, I believe that relying on technology to keep your information safe isn’t reliable. To confirm this, in the past week the maker of CurrentC, an Apple Pay competitor, was hacked by a third party who managed to gather client information. Obviously due to the significant growth in online shopping and online payments then virtual transactions will continue to grow,, however before this I believe that companies should focus primarily on security rather than creating systems on mobiles and tablets.

Following the theme of technology being a danger to general society, in the way that; people leave their security information and personal details in an online database that physically has no protection. In my third blog I looked further into ‘The dark side of the web’, I focused on the fact that although crime is generally going down there has been a recent increase in cyber-crime, and that the statistics of card fraud and online banking crime are not included in the general crime statistics. The vast scale of scams and crime happening on a day to day basis on the web makes it near impossible for the police to regulate it and control it, from this simple fact is the reason why it is on the up, the benefits outweigh the negatives.

In my third blog I also looked into the subject of online paedophilia and how it is also a danger online and how the web offers some people a wall to hide behind. My opinion has stayed the same on this topic especially after looking further into the subject, many physical crimes are supported by evidence that is online and planning that is through social networking sites or the web, by focusing more on online crimes I believe that it could enable the police to keep control over physical crimes, excluding those that are impulse. There has been evidence in the U.S in an increase of activity for criminal agencies requesting information; Google saw a 40% increase in information requests from the U.S from 2009 to 2011. This is a trend that is visible throughout most countries and is on the up, this is a positive aspect but again the amount of the crimes being committed makes the task too high, however as crime is evolving it seems the police are not too far behind.

My other three blog posts in retrospect re very different, however reviewing them in the reflective blog I have realised that soon all of them will have a key link, if not already. SEO’s, viral marketing and wearable technology, these topics are each very different however at present there are examples of how these all work together. Many viral videos today are filmed by GoPro cameras that attach to your body, which can be considered wearable technology, by going viral some companies could even achieve the top spot on a search engine by people looking for that video or generally exploring further into the company. I believe that this will become more and more prominent in the future just as brand identity is becoming more important. Organisations are making their brand more recognisable through viral marketing campaigns and through social networking. Wearable technology makes it easier to access the web and smartphones and tablets are already being used to broadcast over the web, this has been a huge factor in the increase of the viral era. The three topics are part of my generation and will be even more to the next, thus they will be a huge part of business and marketing. In 2013, online retailing in Europe increase by 21.1% and in 2014 online sales grew by £6.14bn from 2013, this is a clear view on how vast the online market is and how key it is going to become to most business’s, wearable technology, viral ads and SEO’s are each clearly going to increase in importance.

Looking over the blogs that I have written I have covered subjects that I generally find interest in and that are relevant to the course. Although I have enjoyed writing about each subject and expressing my opinion there are a few topics that I would have liked to cover if given more time. Looking into google analytics would have been something I would have liked to go further into, as I briefly touched on the subject in a previous blog post. Bounce rates interested me as they measure how effective a website is in encouraging people to revisit and this is something that could benefit me in the future. I would have also liked to look further into digital predictions for the future and what trends are likely to take off. Although I have blogged about this I did not go into as much detail as I would of liked, as this process as brought me up to date with the world of digital I felt that it would be suitable to perhaps put myself even further into digital by understanding and researching technology of the future.

Starting this unit I was unaware how much the modern day relies on and is involved with the digital world. I myself, am not confident with using technology and the concept of blogging was something I had never found interest in nor understood completely. However this process has introduced me into something I found myself enjoying, being able to put a personal opinion on a topic that is effecting day to day life, and reaching a wider audience who possibly share the same views. I have also been able to better my understanding on how to research using the web by finding relevant information in a recent time period, my conducting this research I have also found new programmes that I can use to gather information for further work. This process as a whole as positively benefited me which has been the opposite to my personal hypothesis, I thought that looking further into the world of digital would highlight the factors about it that I disagree with and introduce me to more negative factors surrounding the topic of people relying on technology than one another. Furthermore, I have found more aspects of technology I don’t like and I have found it easier to blog about these, and I may have not highlighted the positive aspects as much as I should of, especially in my most recent blog surrounding wearable technology.

Retailresearch.org, 2014. Online Retailing Research – Centre for Retail Research, Nottingham UK. [online] Available from: http://www.retailresearch.org/onlineretailing.php

Bloomberg BNA, 2014. Social Media Evidence in Criminal Proceedings: An Uncertain Frontier. [online] Available from: http://www.bna.com/social-media-evidence-in-criminal-proceedings-an-uncertain-frontier-by-justin-p-murphy-and-adrian-fontecilla/

Re/code, 2014. Maker of Apple Pay Competitor Has Already Been Hacked. [online] Available from: http://recode.net/2014/10/29/maker-of-retailer-apple-pay-competitor-has-already-been

Support.google.com, 2014. Bounce Rate – Analytics Help. [online] Available from: https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1009409?hl=en-GB

Wearing the web…

Technology is forever evolving, especially in size and shape; computers to laptops to smartphones. Now the age of wearable technology is upon us, you may think that wearable technology has been around for a while now, and in many ways that is correct, digital watches, step counters and LED colour changing t-shirts are all examples of wearable technology. However the introduction of wearable technology with access to the web is now available, the release to developers of Google glass’ in February 2013 and Sony, Samsung and Apple all releasing smart watches in 2015, are the major examples of wearable technology today.

Is wearable technology really necessary? With smartphones and other such devices available, and what really is the difference? Some of the technology is definitely going to target the fitness market as the wrist can provide a pulse rate and other such measurable reading that can benefit someone’s health, Nike chief executive has said, Nike has also been linked to the apple watch.

I believe that wearable technology can benefit use in some markets, in the health market, yes, however I think that if it is used for the same purposes as phones and other communication devices it would lead to even more dependence upon the web for some people, their is also an issue of privacy especially with smart glass’; the first person in history has been treated for internet addiction, this is due to over use of his Google glass’.

Gibbs, S., 2014. Nike and Apple working on ‘stylish’ new wearable technology. [online] the Guardian. Available from: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/oct/23/nike-apple-wearable-technology

Gilbert, D., 2014. Apple Watch Release Date Narrows to ‘Spring 2015’. [online] International Business Times UK. Available from: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/apple-watch-release-date-narrows-spring-2015-1472784

Perry, K., 2014. Man treated for internet addiction ’caused by Google Glass’ – Telegraph. [online] Telegraph.co.uk. Available from: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/11163351/Man-treated-for-internet-addiction-caused-by-Google-Glass.html

Wikipedia, 2014. Google Glass. [online] Available from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Glass

Its gone viral!

Social networking and blogging sites have become a new platform for companies to advertise and market their services, products, these platforms allow the organisation to reach an audience far greater than conventional media. What is “going viral”, well it is something that is spread across the internet, normally due to the media evoking emotion in a person with them then sharing it to others. By going viral many people must undergo this process. There is no formula for something to go viral however their are corresponding factors in many that have gone viral, if an organisation can hit these general guidelines and have some luck they can create an ad that can go viral thus projecting their brand, identity and message to a vast audience. To explain how big this audience could be here are some statistics;

  • 1.28 billion active users monthly Facebook.
  •  255 million monthly users twitter.
  • 1 Billion average YouTube mobile videos views per day.
  • 77% of internet users read blogs.

An example of a successful viral advert is Dove real beauty sketches video, since appearing on YouTube they have received over 63 million views, and this is just on YouTube from the first post, it also received 4.3 billion PR impressions in less than a month. However does this increase sales which is the main objective at the end of the day, IRI data show Dove’s U.S. sales up 1% in four weeks, after the video was released and a 3% rise to $1.5 billion for the full year.

To have a successful impact upon sales and the identity of the organisation the media that has gone viral must be positive about the brand and for the media to go viral it must have some aspect of luck and the foundations of a normal viral media, so in a way unless these combinations have been achieved it cant be considered a successful viral marketing campaign, however if these have been achieved then there is obvious rewards that are beneficial.

Ajmera, H., 2014. Social Media 2014 Statistics – an interactive Infographic you’ve been waiting for!. [online] Digital Insights. Available from: http://blog.digitalinsights.in/social-media-users-2014-stats-numbers/05205287.html

 Digitalstrategyconsulting.com, 2014. Viral video marketing case studies – the best virals of 2013 – Digital Intelligence daily digital marketing research. [online] Available from: http://www.digitalstrategyconsulting.com/intelligence/2013/12/viral_video_marketing_case_studies_the_best_virals_of_2013.php

Neff, J., 2013. Dove: The Evolution From ‘Evolution’. [online] Adage.com. Available from: http://adage.com/article/news/dove-evolution-evolution/241971/

Moreau, E., 2014. What Does It Mean to Go Viral Online?. [online] About. Available from: http://webtrends.about.com/od/howtoguides/a/Viral-Online.htm

The DARK side of the web.

The web is growing day by day however this is not always positive growth, although crime in the UK has fallen from its peak, there has been a clear increase in online crime, card fraud and online banking crimes are not included in the criminal statistics however the office for national statistics said that if they were included they would expect that the number of criminal offences recorded in 2012-13 would of increased by 3.7 million, other examples of the criminal activity that is active within the web are film piracy, scams and indecent images.

A commissioned poll by research firm Vision Critical for Get Safe Online Week 2014 which lasted six days in October suggested that 51% of Britons have been affected by online crime, however only 32% reported the crime, is this right? It seems that the web is too big to regulate and police properly with far to many opportunities to conduct criminal activity. A very recent example of this is the problem of online child abuse, the national crime agency have said that it is impossible to prosecute every offender so they need to target more serious offenders, is this fair? I believe that the search engine operators should monitor this more and act as a preventer, I have already mentioned in a previous blog that online transactions are clearly not safe even with algorithms in place and it is clear that many other online crimes are becoming more prominent, the web is growing without restriction and Is not monitored by its providers well enough which leaves a strain on the police. There is no clear way to fix this and as the creator of the web has recently said: “the internet has mirrored the dark side of humanity”.

The Independent, 2014. National Crime Agency says system realistically can’t prosecute all 50,000 child sex offenders. [online] Available from: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/national-crime-agency-says-that-realistically-the-system-cant-persecute-all-50000-child-sex-offenders-9806790.html

Financial Times, 2014. Cyber scams and credit card fraud undermine UK crime figures – FT.com. [online] Available from: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/3d9d6f24-5524-11e4-89e8-00144feab7de.html#axzz3H4Ax2ygQ

Anon, 2014. [online] Available from: http://half-of-britons-have-been-victims-of-cyber-crime-but-many-dont-know-where-to-report-it [Accessed 24 Oct. 2014].