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Digital News & Analysis

How the Internet of Things Drives Customer Engagement

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Now that we've accepted the idea of the Internet of Things (IoT), researchers are starting to look at when, where, how, why and who will use it. They're also looking into potential risks.

Recent research from IDC, for example, shows that retailers are leading the charge to the IoT in the quest for better customer experiences.

According to IDC, retailers see the IoT as a way to improve customer experiences. Specifically, they are using it to pull consumers into one of their channels, where they will entice them with products that have been contextualized and personalized for the customers’ gratification.

Discussion Point: How Big are Data Security Threats?

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You may have heard that some cyber criminals in Russia recently stole more than a billion user IDs and passwords -- yes, that's billion with a "B."  

In the past year, online security and data theft has been making international headlines, as evidenced by huge security breaches at retailers like Target and Neiman Marcus.

How bad is it? With our lives becoming more digitally entwined, it makes sense that potential security threats are more visible. Think about how many times a day you exchange digital information using either an Internet connection or a mobile device.

Despite the security hysteria, experts say there are simple ways to take steps to tighten up your Internet security -- whether for your own personal or business use. CMSWire reached out to a collection of Internet security experts to find what's going on.

Start Your Community Relationships with the First Hello

2014-13-August-Welcome.jpgIt’s the first day of your new job. You’re so excited that you barely slept the night before.

And then you arrive at the front desk.

The office manager doesn’t recognize your face or name, so phone calls are made to determine where you should go. Your new boss is travelling this week and the rest of your team has yet to arrive. You're sent to the waiting area, and sit reading outdated issues of magazines.

Does this look like the start of a healthy, long-term relationship?

Is Your Brand's Personalization Really Customer-Centric?

True personalization makes brands competitive, but what does true personalization mean?

True personalization gives brands the opportunity to be wholly customer-centric at every point of engagement. Rather than just increasing conversion rates, personalization involves a continuous effort to improve your customer experience so that visitors will return, purchase and become loyal.

It's not about collecting mountains of data or testing based on legacy assumptions about visitors, but the actionable insights which improve customer experience and drive revenue. These insights don't come from a single A/B or multivariate test, but rather the evolution of how you understand your customer micro-segments. It’s a chance to develop a dynamic understanding of how visitors mature, and not just who they were during their last click.

Sing a Little Song, Do a Little Dance: Get Down with Google

Google is introducing new all singing, all dancing ads. Well, nearly. Google is in the process of testing its new "Listen Now" service ads in partnership with Spotify, Rhapsody and Apple’s Beats Music.

The service works in much the same way other Google searches work with one execption. When users search for music, Google displays the results — along with at least three links to music streaming services and stores.

Are You Following the Money in Digital Analytics?

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As someone who has been involved in digital — web — analytics since it was an early practice in 1996, I’ve always been acutely aware of the challenge of mapping metrics or analyses to real world measures such as revenue or cost savings.

And I’ve always contended that you need to think in these terms if you want the analysis of your digital channel to be relevant to your organizations.

I took this so far as to open my 2005 book, The Executive’s Guide to Web Site Measurement and Testing with this: Money makes the web-go-round.

The 'Scoop' on Content as a Service

web CMS, 2014-11-August-Ice-Cream.jpgWhen was the last time you heard of a company using its content management system as a recruiting tool? Never? Well last month the New York Times made a splash providing an overview of its custom-built content management system called Scoop. One of the inspirations of this post was that a prominent editor for competitor Washington Post, Ezra Klein, announced that the reason he was leaving the Post for Vox Media was because -- ready for this -- of how fancy its web content management system was. As Klein said in the article: “at our first meeting, we knew we were going here. They had the technology we thought we were inventing.”

Yahoo Tech's David Pogue: You Gotta Be Authentic

Connecting with Bill Sobel

David Pogue thinks science, technology, language and humor go together quite well. "That’s been my experience, anyway, in my years writing columns, presenting science and tech on TV, creating how-to books and doing a lot of public speaking," he explains on his website.

Pogue, the former personal technology columnist for the New York Times, is the founder of Yahoo Tech — a "consumer-technology website for normal people."

He’s also a monthly columnist for Scientific American, host of science shows on PBS’s “NOVA” and a correspondent on the CBS News Sunday Morning.

In his spare time, he authored four titles in the For Dummies series of books and teamed up with O'Reilly Media to launch Pogue Press, the company that creates the Missing Manual books. If you haven't heard of the Missing Manuals, they're a series of "warm, witty and jargon free" manuals for popular consumer software and hardware products … the "books that should have been in the box."

Week in Review: End of the Mobile App + Big Data, Big Insights

Goodbye Mobile Apps?
The mobile and web applications space will see a dramatic shift in how things are designed and built.

Meet the Empowered CMO 
The age of the customer may also turn out to be the age of the chief marketing officer.

Take that, Google 
Where last week Google Docs got better at collaborating, Microsoft this week made key upgrades to Office for the iPad.

Strength in Silos
Work silos, when bridged, can actually bring us enterprise fortune

EMC, Documentum Shakeup?
What happens to Documentum if Elliott Management breaks up EMC?

Show Me the Insights
So we’ve got the big data and the interest in it. What’s the problem? 

Understand the 3 Stages of Digital Marketing Maturity
How modern marketing organizations should operate at each stage
Download Now

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Cyber Criminals in Russia Might Know the Password You Forgot

2014-08-August-broken-padlock.jpgIs the notion of online security as passé as the illusion of privacy? Maybe.

Just this week, we learned that a small group of hackers in Russia amassed a database of 1.2 billion stolen user IDs and passwords.

Hold Security, the Milwaukee, Wis.-based company that disclosed the incident, described the incident as "arguably the largest data breach known to date."

The Russian cyber gang targeted websites indiscriminately, hitting Fortune 500 companies and mom and pop sites alike. Hold Security reported the thieves "amassed more than 4.5 billion records, mostly consisting of stolen credentials. 1.2 billion of these credentials appear to be unique, belonging to over half a billion e-mail addresses."

Goodbye Mobile Apps, Hello Multi-Device Experiences

customer experience, mobile phonesYour app runs in a little square.

All the money you spend on developers, design teams, content production and infrastructure for your app essentially boils down to a little square. Sometimes it’s a bigger square. Sometimes it’s more of a rectangle. And sometimes your app is responsive and tries to adjust itself as the square changes shape.

But in the end, your brand's communications still come down to that little square.

How to Approach Your Next Web Replatforming

Web CMS, 2014-06-August-Ants-Moving.jpgThere’s no rest for the weary if you're a digital marketer in 2014. As the pace of technological change accelerates, it’s all one can do to keep up. Take replatforming, that Herculean effort of moving from one website solution to another, whether an upgrade or moving to a different vendor’s solution.

As technology’s pace quickens the cycle of replatforming gets shorter and shorter. Where once a 5-year cycle would be deemed leading edge, today it puts you smack in the middle of the laggard quadrant of the adoption lifecycle. In fact, a strong argument could be made that replatforming should be treated as an ongoing program, not a one-time project. 

What's New in August for Open Source CMS

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A fact many of us learned in high school — that popularity has its downsides — is proving to be true in the world of open source content management systems (CMS).

Take WordPress — the most popular CMS in the world, powering an astonishing 47.4 percent of all sites on the Internet, according to BuiltWith, a website profiler, lead generation, competitive analysis and business intelligence tool.

July, to use a shameless cliché, was both the best of times, and the worst of times, for this inordinately popular platform. New research from 34SP.com found more than half of UK small businesses are using WordPress as a CMS, thereby “finally blowing away its image as just a blogging platform."

The same study also confirmed a few things that were not included in the official results, including the fact 31 percent of 34SP.com clients who use WordPress call wine their favorite beverage (Jägerbombs really disappointed with just 1 percent of the votes) and only 13 percent have more than 500 friends on Facebook. What does this have to do with anything? Nothing. So let's move on.

DAM Helps Deliver Experiences Worth Talking About

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A tidal wave of content is diluting the web, social media and physical spaces, making the job of a marketer much more difficult. Decent content is now as easy to ignore as awful content. Just as Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart parody the 24-hour news cycle, the “omnichannel,” “real time,” “engaging,” “targeted” and “viral” content world is now mocked by websites like Clickhole and TrapCrunch. Only outstanding writing, videos and images will have an impact.

Getting people to care about your content doesn't come down to just the act of distribution -- it's about the full life of communications, from creation to preservation. That’s why I believe digital asset management (DAM) plays such a crucial role in marketing. It’s not just about simplification or saving time -- it’s about delivering an experience worth talking about.

Content: Say Something New

2014-04-August-Yawn.jpgI have a confession to make: I’m bored.

I’m bored of seeing the same regurgitated articles every week. I’m bored of our disciplines debating if we should be called content strategy, content marketing or inbound marketing. I’m tired of us fighting about how important content strategists are or should be, or need to be. I’m bored because instead of showing me the work, you talk about how you would approach the work, or should approach the work. Why don’t you just show me how you approached it and what you learned?

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