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Digital News & Analysis

A Beginner's Guide to Responsive Web Design

Responsive web design emerged in 2010 as an option for businesses scrambling to deliver their websites across multiple devices. Though the approach is not new, some businesses still don't know what responsive web design entails and what value it provides. Here's a developer's introduction to the basics.

News Bites: Google Smart Lists, Contact Center Tips, & More

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And now, the news. Google gets Smart Lists, Sysomos integrates with Clarabridge, Bulldog gets Boosted, and 3CLogic goes 5.0.

Also in the headlines: multichannel contact centers get tips, addresses get corrected, reps need to know what they need to know, and Clari offers a new mobile sales productivity platform.

The Network Approach to Location-Based Services

Location-Based Services Benefit Consumers and BusinessA shopper in a department store decides to buy an expensive handbag. But when she hands her credit card to a sales associate to swipe, the shopper’s bank detects the purchase is for a suspiciously high amount. The shopper’s mobile service provider immediately initiates a request to verify the card user’s mobile location. This information is in turn shared with the card company’s fraud engine and the transaction is cleared to be processed -- all without ever inconveniencing the shopper.

This scenario is just one example of how location-based services can help consumers -- in this case, by balancing fraud protection with convenience. When consumers don’t have to endure the embarrassment and annoyance of having their card unnecessarily declined, merchants benefit because sales aren't lost, and sales associates don’t have to go through the stress of dealing with an irate customer.

Oracle Launches Enhanced Mobile Cloud Access

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Sales force automation (SFA) and user experience management have pitted Oracle and Salesforce against each other with Marketo snapping at their heels. All three have been piling the pressure on with new releases and announcements as they battle to dominate the market.

Yesterday, at its Collaborate annual conference for the Oracle application and technology community, Oracle added some major enhancements to its CPQ Cloud. It also announced a number of upgrades to it sales cloud that are focused principally on making SFA more mobile.

Why Can't Lawyers Learn to Use Hashtags?

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Lawyers have a lot to learn about digital content and social media. A second study confirms US law firms haven't grasped the potential of digital and social technologies, as CMSWire reported two months ago.

The new study by Living Ratings (.pdf), a London-based firm that analyzes how financial, professional services, property and technology firms are using digital communications, found most American law firms are struggling with technologies.

It essentially confirms the findings of the earlier report by consulting firm Good2BSocial and Above the Law, which concluded US law firms are beginning to dabble in social technologies, but the practice is still limited and "ineffective."

Can Twitter's New Profile Help Brands?

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In another step towards becoming more Facebook-like, micro-blogging network Twitter has revamped its profile page. How will the change affect Twitter-oriented marketing?

To see some examples of the new profile, check out the pages for US first lady Michelle Obama, actors Kerry Washington, Channing Tatum or Zac Efron or even CMSWire editor Noreen Seebacher (shown at left).

 In a post on its company blog, Twitter designer David Bellona wrote this week that the new profile layout "will be easier (and, we think, more fun) to express yourself through a new and improved web profile."

Wharton Professor Focuses on Strong Brands, Happy Customers

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Barbara Kahn knows a thing or two about marketing. In fact, it helped her earn a unique claim to fame: The former English lit major is ranked as one the best business school professors in the world according to Poets & Quants, a social network for MBA candidates.

Kahn is the Patty and Jay H. Baker Professor of Marketing and director of the Jay H. Baker Retailing Center at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. She also spent three and a half years as the Dean and Schein Family Chair Professor of Marketing at the School of Business Administration, University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla.

An internationally recognized scholar on variety seeking, brand loyalty, retail assortment and consumer decision making, she is also a prolific author. Between 1982 and 2006 she was the world's seventh most published author of articles in the most prestigious marketing journals. She wrote Global Brand Power: Leveraging Branding for Long-Term Growth and co-authored the book Grocery Revolution: The New Focus on the Consumer.

Transforming Social ROI From a Myth Into Reality

Transform Social Marketing ROI From a Myth Into RealityHere’s a question I still get way too often: “What’s the ROI of social media?” It’s usually a B2B marketer that’s doing the asking, someone seemingly resigned to spending valuable time and resources on social media without really understanding why. Or it's a marketer that totally gets the value of investing in the company blog, Twitter profile and LinkedIn groups but still needs help convincing their “old-school” CMO or CFO that investing in social media is worth it. 

Aren’t we marketers now experts at calculating the return on all our online marketing initiatives? Why is social media such a tough nut to crack?

Celebrate Connectivity: It's Internet of Things Day #iotday

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Four years ago, Dana Blouin was working as a network technician at a communications company in Rhode Island. Today he's working on a PhD in Thailand, conducting research on the Internet of Things (IoT).

His radical lifestyle change underscores just how big of a thing the Internet of Things really is — a fact that's especially appropriate to recognize today, the fourth annual Internet of Things Day.

The IoT is going to going to change everything, Blouin said.

"When the opportunity to do research on the Internet of Things presented itself, I knew I had to jump on it. The writing is on the wall: the IoT will impact the world just as much if not more than the Internet itself. I wanted to be part of that, and now that I am, I can't imagine doing anything else," he said. 

Blouin, a CMSWire contributor, is conducting research at the Sirindhorn International Institute of Technology (SIIT) at Thammasat University on low power IPv6 wireless networks — small sensors that can communicate reliably with Internet enabled devices.

"It's an exciting time," he said. "Once devices start working together on common platforms, the rest of the pieces of the IoT will fall into place and we will be living better for it."

Turn Your Smartphone into a Lean, Mean Marketing Machine

Have you ever wondered how some corporate Twitter accounts make customer engagement look so effortless? Or how a marketer seems to be posting meaningful updates on Facebook while speaking at a user conference at the same time?

Hackers Use Viral Videos to Attack B2B E-Commerce Site

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You probably never thought about kittens, zombies and porn in the same breath — and the imagery gets even weirder if you throw the words "B2B e-commerce" into the mix.

But everything is possible on the Internet: even a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack that employed an apparently unprecedented technique to cause thousands of online video viewers to unwittingly bombard a target website with junk traffic.

According to researchers from Web security firm Incapsula, the attack last Wednesday resulted from a persistent cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability on one of the biggest and most popular video sites on the web.

Incapsula co-founder Marc Gaffan declined to identify the site, but told CMSWire it ranks among the top 50 websites in the world by traffic based on statistics from Amazon-owned firm Alexa. That seems to narrow it down to one of two sites: Youtube.com — the third largest — or Xvideos.com — the 44th largest.

Someone capitalized on viral videos of something like cute cats … or maybe sex kittens … to surreptitiously turn website visitors into “DDoS Zombies” — in the hope of taking down an unidentified B2B e-commerce site.

You can't make this stuff up.

Reporting for Duty at Bloomfire: New CEO Bob Zukis

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Want to watch someone walk their talk? Then keep your eyes on Bob Zukis.

Zukis is the author of Social Inc., a book that claims Business is the next social opportunity — and it's worth trillions of dollars.

Beginning this morning, he’ll have a chance to prove it when he takes the helm at Bloomfire, a start-up that aims to revolutionize the Enterprise through its knowledge sharing and social collaboration platform.

For those who aren’t yet familiar with Bloomfire, it was launched nearly two years ago at SXSW in Austin, Texas, where the company also happens to be based.

5 Minutes With Irina Guseva

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Inside the content management universe, there are vendors who promote their technologies, customers trying to pick just the right one and analysts who try to bridge the gap.

One of the most colorful analysts in the enterprise information management space is Irina Guseva, senior analyst for the Real Story Group and an occasional contributor to CMSWire.

Starting her career as a broadcast, print and online journalist, she later worked as a web CMS practitioner and industry consultant. In all, she has more than 15 years of experience with content technologies -- a very long time in an industry that evolves so rapidly.

In the first of a new feature for CMSWire, we asked Guseva five questions to take her pulse on the state of the industry.

TapSense Mobile Ad Guide Helps Clear the Fog

For marketers struggling to keep up with the fast-changing mobile ad landscape, help has arrived: TapSense just updated "A Complete Guide to Mobile Marketing."

The third edition of this handy manual has been expanded with tips on strategies, business and native ads. It is quickly becoming the go-to guide for mobile ads.

For example, there are tips about native ads for mobile, an environment where native ads are arguably better suited because of the limited screen real estate. Those ideas include selecting a native format that works best for your product, tapping into demand on real-time bidding marketplaces, and being sure to label sponsored content clearly, if not for any other reason than the fact that the US Federal Trade Commission is watching.

Reinventing Retail for the Omnichannel Era

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Retail represents a big chunk of the US economy. It contributes $2.5 trillion to the nation's annual gross domestic product, according to the National Retail Federation. So it's no surprise that there's so much interest in the quickly evolving, multichannel retail climate, as evidenced by events like the First Annual Symposium on Omni Retailing.

Held last week at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, the symposium examined how fashion retailers are creating seamless customer experiences across channels. Organizers described it as "a forum and think tank" for retail business leaders to discuss best practices for future implementation of omnichannel retailing strategies.

Peter Nordstrom, executive vice president and president of merchandising at Nordstrom, presented a compelling keynote that addressed cross-channel convergence from his company’s perspective. Additional Speakers included Jean-Marc Bellaiche, senior partner and managing director at The Boston Consulting Group; David Cox, a global business manager for Microsoft's relationship with Bank of America, and Katia Beauchamp, one of the three co-founders and co-CEO of online retailer Birchbox.

"We help consumers discover products they didn't even know they wanted," Beauchamp said.

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