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Showing posts from February, 2008

Metis Talent Management brand new website goes live

Last fortnight was a joy, as we came to the launch of Metis Talent Management's website. Metis is a Singapore based organisation that advises clients on Talent Management with a primary focus on Talent Development and Organisation Design. Best wishes to team Metis!

The other great thing is how folks at Metis approached this by going in for a full overhaul, including getting a new logo and brand colours. Do leave your comments on what you feel about the website and the logo!!

Web Enabled Prosumption in Print Media

When Alvin Toffler coined the term Prosumptionin 1980, he may perhaps not thought about the various forms this would acquire in a later day. He would certainly not thought at that point that newspapers would use reader generated content to enhance brand engagement and build loyalty.That is exactly what a Chennai based free-to-distribute Tabloid Ergo is seeking to do. Ergo has gone one step forward in reserving a space every single day for a reader contributed photograph. To be fair, reader contents have adorned the pages of print media for very long, whether it is humour columns such as Life's like that in the Readers Digest or story writing contests.Playing on the urge to see our work in print, Ergo invites its readers to email pictures shot by them which may interest other readers. The column has been quite a success, and going by the response seen by me, certainly generated a certain sense of loyalty in the readers. Such is the rush to send photos that many of the contributors …

Social Networking or the Behaviour Patterns- What attracts the marketers

So, what did Microsoft buy when they paid billions to take 1.6 percent stake in Facebook? The appeal behind the social networking groups site is not just access to a large user base, but access to behaviour, group and individual, which can be used to promote a product, a gift idea, a charity.Why do the marketers love SNS?Love to know group behaviour and communication patterns. Ability to influence word of mouth recommendations (influencers). SNS' offer some degree of well identified closed group, unlike web which is open. Think about a community of guitar artists and the guitar manufacturer gets a chance to place an ad in this group. Communities based on interest groups are even more homogenous(marketers love when the crowd is homogenous). A lively photography community is more likely to receive a camera equipment ad especially if there are folks who are talking about it. When people talk, they generate peer pressure.It does not only happen in teens but in all age groups - most of…

The conversation on conversation continues..

Let me state this upfront. This series was taken up by me in response to a question from a friend, who is a marketing tiger, but a wet cat, when it comes to anything digital. Now read the last two posts to get a sense of what I am talking about!

Look at this blog from Income Tax Department of India. Yes, government departments too have realized the importance of a conversation(atleast pockets of the government have), which those in India, will agree is a complete change. So, you can register, post a question of common interest, and Income Tax department will address( Yes, sometimes you get to ask them a question and they would answer). I would not say it has really taken off big time, but certainly sounds a very promising idea. Which brings us to the central point of this post - how many of us really know about this particular blog?

'Discoverability' of a blog may not be automatic, and certainly require some promotion. Barmer Police Blog is a case in point. It is listed in Nar…

The conversation evaluation framework..

Last post I mentioned about talking about the brand blogs we see in India in different segments. I started to think what yardstick to use to talk about them, and what to measure. So, first things first.

The most important criteria in defining a brand blog in my view remains the ability to create content by the target segment themselves. This could be by way of full length text articles, reactions, pictures, videos, links or just comments. Some form of prosumption is a must to have to get the conversation going. In my judgment this is what differentiates a community and a conversation from a billboard or a print ad, which you just see, smile or ignore, and walk on. In short, this is which engages and builds the readership ,this is what makes people come back again and again. A glossy looking site, is bound to fail, if the target segment thinks that is an advertising portal. Finito. So make them talk. I looks at glossy ads only when I am getting bored waiting for my medical appointmen…

Coming Soon - The state of the conversation

This one has been an intention for a while. I have been watching the evolution of blogging as a brand conversation medium (brand touch point) in India. Lot of interesting (and not so interesting) development happening all around.

It is my intention to take a sector and talk about blogging and non-blog conversation, for example, at Maggi Club. Coming soon. After a break!

Living Life Kingfisher size!

Earlier this week, I went to Goa for a conference.For me this was a new state added to my list, having been to sixteen of them earlier. Yes, number 17 and the youthfulness of Goa go so well together!

I and some of my colleagues chose to stay in beachside tents at a resort on Varca beach.And we flew Kingfisher where we had a completely different experience, which is certainly setting up very high standards. Will tell you why, in the next few lines.

To be frank, we did feel a little weird in choosing to stay in a tent, which did not even have a lock on the door, only a zip slider! But then I have been a little adventurous type in these matters. The Mumbai Goa Kingfisher flight was an A321, which not just had a personal screens on all seats, but had two channels, that were better than the live TV that was playing on other 31. One of them was the GPS channel, which gave the aircraft location, speed, altitude, and time to destination etc. The other one was a real treat. The aircraft had a c…

Now which one is customer intimacy

Comparisons can be odious I agree, but sometimes necessary too, as they happen without any effort and results are starkly different. Last week I had to visit two bank branches, one of State Bank of India and another of ICICI Bank and the experiences were so different.

At ICICI Bank, I encountered a queuing machine with very confusing options, and as I stood trying to figure out how to get a token to the correct service desk, a smart looking lad appears, asks me what service I require, quickly punches a few buttons on the machine and hands me a token. Before I say thanks, he asks me whether I need a credit card. I say no, thanks. Lifetime free, he says (What a positioning!). I reach the counter, finish the address update business and head out. On my way out, again confronted by a girl, do I need a credit card.So, ergo, I declare I have one issued by ICICI and hope I would be able to peacefully, she snaps back, "which one is that- Gold?, we can give you Platinum, Titanium". I s…

Microsoft + Yahoo = Last Mughal (Moogle)?!

So the truth is finally out- world's largest software company has accepted defeat by almost saying - their index is better than mine. Microsoft wants the search and advertising capabilities of Yahoo, which essentially means an excellent products company is seeking to integrate the capabilities of a wonderful services company. Saul Hansell of NYT wonders likens it to taking two aircraft carriers and making a new one out of the spare parts. And mind you, two aircraft carriers of different make and flags. Will this work indeed.

The sad truth is that Yahoo is not just search or banner advertising. Its portfolio of services is amazingly diverse. In slightly curt business language, it is not a one trick pony.

Microsoft's letter to Yahoo's board is perhaps the politest communication one has heard from MSFT in last decade. Give me your crown jewels, I need them and I know you guys need money, else.. is a one line summary. So instead of frightening Google which is going beyong just w…