Tag Archive | "industry"

Food and Beverage Industry Missing Out on Social Opportunity

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Many social companies are changing the way they do business to reflect the current market. Social companies need to be data companies and content companies. Similarly, traditional industries now need to be social companies too, and respond to changes in the market. A report from Brandwatch examines the impact of social on the food and beverage industry.

The report notes:

Restaurant, food & beverage businesses, operating at the mercy of consumers’ shifting tastes and preferences, face a rising imperative to proactively listen, understand, and respond to their consumers’ opinions and interests. Social media, both instant and highly public, provides brands with the significant opportunity to maintain.

The food and beverage industry receives the highest mentions of any industry sector in the UK, according to the report, accounting for 32 percent of brand interaction. Clothing and accessories is next with 17 percent, and every other industry represents 11 percent of interactions at most.

When it comes to Facebook, the industry seems to be underperforming given the size of the audience. On average, industry leading businesses make 1.55 posts 6.31 comments per day.

During that average day, the audience provides more than 4,500 likes, more than 134 comments, and more than 235 shares. However when the mean number of followers exceeds 11 million, there should be a lot more activity.

Updates containing photos receive the most engagement, averaging more than 161,000 likes among the top 50 food and beverage Facebook channels. Twitter pages tend to receive more interaction, averaging 511 mentions from the audience per day, while leading brands can receive as many as 2,000 mentions per day. Not surprising given the interactive nature of Twitter.

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The report also grades the top 50 businesses in the food and beverage industry, with breakdowns for social visibility, sentiment, reach growth, and social engagement and content.

For example, number one rated Burger King, has high visibility because of the buzz it generates on social, has high reach growth because of expanding audiences, and high social engagement because the brand effectively interacts with its audience on social networks.

The report also covers diverse sectors of the market, like intent to buy statistics in the US pizza market, and trends in the alcohol industry in the UK, as well as other social insights. Download the report here.

Article courtesy of SocialTimes Feed

Socialbakers Adds Instagram & Paid Social Analytics, Partners With Sina Weibo

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Socialbakers, a Facebook Marketing Partner, made a flurry of announcements Thursday at its Engage conference in Prague.

Socialbakers now has the ability to include Instagram in its analytics suite, in addition to Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Socialbakers clients also have deeper insights into paid posts, and they can also see how often competitors pay to promote their social content. Other additions to the Socialbakers suite include video analytics and upgrades to the executive dashboard.

Lastly, Socialbakers has partnered with Sina Weibo, China’s leading social network.

Jan Rezab, Socialbakers CEO, blogged about the updates:

Socialbakers Analytics is redesigned, reimagined, and more powerful than ever. Soon, every Socialbakers Analytics client will have access to the latest and greatest version of our flagship marketing tool. With a sleek interface and more actionable insights, including new engagement and customer care metrics, Ads integration, a deeper integration of Facebook Insights metrics, and unprecedented reporting capacities, Socialbakers Analytics 3.0 is the #DataDriven future of social marketing.

Socialbakers clients can view a variety of Instagram metrics, including:

  • Evolution and Distribution of Interactions
  • Filter Effectiveness
  • Follower Growth
  • Top Content

The updates to Socialbakers’ analytics suite also gives advertisers better insight into their paid efforts. Called Promoted Post Detection, the technology allows advertisers to see how often companies within their industry pay to promote content and how their promoted posts are performing.

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Rezab also blogged about the company’s partnership with Sina Weibo:

In a unique partnership with Sina Weibo, China’s main social network, Socialbakers is developing the first social analytics tool specifically capable of evaluating marketing performances on Sina Weibo. It will include universal metrics for measuring engagement, post success, and customer care success on Weibo.

The tool they’re developing will cover these six tenets:

  • Fan Acquisition and Behavior
  • Content
  • Engagement
  • Customer Care
  • Ad Effectiveness
  • Market Trends

Article courtesy of SocialTimes Feed

Making the Market for Influencer Marketing

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Influencer marketing is taking off: rapid growth, fast adoption, hundreds of millions invested, new influencers and brands jumping into the market, new channels emerging, and dedicated agencies are springing up.

Yet with all this explosive growth, an influencer’s numbers are hard to verify, there is a lack of consistent and reliable metrics, and determining the cost for influencer endorsements is still a black box. These are indicative not of a bubble but of a boom and the accompanying chaos and disruptive change that accompanies a sea change in the industry.

For influencer marketing to become as pervasive, valued, and accepted as other forms of advertising and online marketing, a more transparent and automated marketplace needs to emerge. The ecosystem that grew around the Google Adwords/Adsense platform is an example of what can occur when an automated, transparent market for advertisers is established.

Building a marketplace to automate and scale influencer marketing is the Holy Grail. With the industry still in its infancy, several developments first need to occur. At a structural level, the industry needs to move from a services-oriented solution to a technology-oriented solution.

Today, hand-holding is important, but as the industry matures, technology will play a greater role in building a centralized platform where brands and influencers can meet. A centralized marketplace will require three core elements: greater scale, transparency and metrics, and automated campaign management.

Scale

Scale is crucial. Greater deal flow is needed for a platform to evolve. Companies are still dipping their toes in the space. Most advertising dollars still go to traditional advertising. But this is changing quickly. Total spend on digital advertising is set to surpass TV ad spend in 2018. Social media advertising is one of the fastest growing digital strategies and influencer marketing is a key driver of this growth.

Results of recent influencer marketing studies show:

STUDY: Fortune 100 Social Compliance Issues

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The average Fortune 100 firm suffered 69 unmoderated compliance incidents during a one-year study by the Nexgate division of security-as-a-service provider Proofpoint.

The findings by Nexgate included:

  • The average Fortune 100 firm has 320 social media accounts, 213,539 followers, and 1,159 employees making more than 500,000 posts to those accounts.
  • Employees were responsible for 12 of the average 69 unmoderated compliance incidents per firm, while public commenters were responsible for the other 57.
  • Nine different U.S. regulatory standards triggered incidents, including retail communications and customer response from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), regulation Z from the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, Federal Trade Commission regulations on sweepstakes and regulation FD from the Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • Financial-services firms, which make up 21 of the Fortune 100, accounted for more than 5,000 incidents, or more than 250 each.
  • Food and Drug Administration adverse drug experience risks represented the most common social compliance risk for healthcare companies, with 98 incidents.
  • Only 47 percent of posts by Fortune 100 brands were made via marketing and content-publishing applications.

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Nexgate said in its report:

Informal culture, pace, scale and complexity separate the social media compliance challenge from more static public communications channels such as press, website and print. Ignoring these differences can overwhelm compliance staff and become a barrier to social success. As social programs grow within any organization, compliance staff needs to consider more dynamic, automated compliance processes.

Nexgate also provided the following suggestions on how to avoid compliance issues:

The first step in in building a successful social compliance program is establishing the core team responsible for compliance. Social media compliance requires coordination between groups. The team should include social users (marketing, support, sales, etc.), compliance and information security team (since this committee may also be leveraged to ensure social media security.) The primary role of this cross-functional team is to assign clear roles and responsibilities within the organization for policy, training, enforcement and audit.

Develop a social media security and compliance policy covering approved business use, content and publishing workflow.

Approved business use: Define approved social account types and business uses. Is brand representation limited to corporate marketing accounts, or is approved usage extended to executives, sales, support and general employees? What business purpose is approved for each group (marketing, employee advocacy, prospecting, recruiting, etc.)? Which accounts are used for material earnings disclosures (if any)? Policy should also cover which social networks (Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) are approved for each account type.

Content: Define what content is allowed and not allowed to be posted for each required regulation. Policy should also extend beyond compliance to cover security-related content (e.g. malware, scams, phishing) and acceptable use (profanity, hate, intolerance, etc.). Content policy should consider both brand employee and public commenter communications. Content policy may vary for different account types (SEC disclosure accounts, etc.)

Publishing workflow: Define the publishing process employees are expected to use for corporate accounts. Policy should define which publishing tools should be used and when content should be reviewed. For example, FINRA requires that static brand content (profile data, major announcements, etc.) be reviewed before posting, while interactive conversations (social selling by brokers, etc.) may be audited after publishing.

Readers: What did you think of the findings by Nexgate?

Compliance meter image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Article courtesy of SocialTimes Feed

Tech Giants Pile On In Support Of The NSA-Curtailing USA FREEDOM Act

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Mark Pincus Is Back — And His Vintage Management Style Might Be, Too

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The Case of Social vs. Mobile vs. Console Gaming

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No decision presents higher stakes for game developers than which platform they should use. While it may seem tempting to suggest that smart money always hedges its bets, the social, mobile and console gaming ecosystems require their own unique approaches, and few designers or studios, if any, can expect to truly excel across the whole ecosystem.

Below, we’ll look at how three current platforms for video games – the social network, the smartphone, and the dedicated console – are currently faring, as well as predictions on where each could be headed in the not-too-distant future.

Console Gaming 

Two years after the games console entered its eighth generation of hardware and celebrated four decades in existence, it’s not surprising that it has less of a spring in its step compared to younger rivals, like mobile.

However, global revenues from console hardware and software will comfortably exceed $50 billion next year after several successive years of respectable growth. While the growing importance of the worlds’ ‘emerging economies’– including Russia, Brazil, Pakistan and Thailand, has most obviously benefited newer entrants to the gaming market, these countries are also producing a significant legion of players who want to experience the ‘AAA’ content where the console is still the preferred platform.

Without a doubt, console gaming will continue to dominate the U.S. market. Newzoo estimates that console games will generate more than $11 billion in U.S. revenue in 2015 as opposed to mobile’s $7.2 billion.

It could be argued that the console’s relative decline in what the industry calls ‘importance’ – how many people play them and how much – will actually increase its cultural cachet. Just as vinyl records and printed magazines were eventually bolstered by their ‘boutique’ status when they ceased to be the default media in their respective fields, so could consoles. Now that they are just one of many ways to play video games, they can focus more intensively on those areas in which they truly excel.

Verdict: Console gaming will remain dominant in the U.S. for the foreseeable future but loses out on a global scale.

Mobile Gaming

Increasingly, the dizzying rate of technological progress makes it unclear how long the traditional console will hold the majority of clout – at least globally.

According to the same report from Newzoo, that time is quickly approaching. It is estimated that in 2015, mobile games will generate more than $6 billion more than consoles worldwide. The pace of development in smartphone handsets may have slowed since 2007, when makers of devices running the Android operating system raced to meet the challenge thrown down by Apple’s iOS – but this nascent maturity in hardware is just the beginning of the story for mobile game developers.

While the most prominent successes have been casual games like Candy Crush, a growing lineup of mobile titles from AAA developers, such as Deus Ex: The Fall to Republique, have been giving hardcore gamers pause. Additionally, mobile developers are not just satisfied to gnaw away at market share traditionally reserved for consoles. Titles such as Battle of the Bulge entirely re-make the concept of serious gaming in a form that exploits the native characteristics of mobile devices.

Of course, hard statistics are difficult to beat. This is where the current story of mobile gaming cuts straight to the chase: by the end of 2014, global revenues in the sector reached $25 billion – an astonishing 42 percent surge since 2013. Like consoles, mobile devices pair hardware with an OS to encourage loyalty to both: you can’t switch from Android to iOS without a costly change of handset, just as your XBox or Playstation 4 are an inseparable pairing of physical device and software. Although, one can expect that as gaming continues to be a dominant on mobile, we will continue to see more mobile game exclusives.

Verdict: Given the impressive maturity of mobile phones in terms of graphics and processing speed, you now essentially have a gaming console in your hand. For this and many other reasons, mobile will be the leader on a global scale for years to come.

Social Gaming

While console gaming offers possibly the best experience for the user, social gaming made it truly accessible to anyone with a computer and an Internet connection. Social networks’ rapid advance as gaming platforms has been fueled not just by technological dynamism, but also by the accessible way they’re set up: there’s usually no up-front cost to play, while in-game purchases can be calibrated to local market conditions.

In the past, the speed of home computers was far faster than Internet connections. That untapped well of processing power enables social game developers to connect with a far wider market that exists for games needing dedicated hardware. Many believe that this scale – and the human contact which lies at the heart of the process – creates the scope for projects of unparalleled ambition.

Revenues in this sector of the industry may still be lower when compared to mobile and console, but steady growth in revenue means that they aren’t as far-gone as some analysts would believe. Moreover, social games are most popular in parts of the world in which overall growth is fastest, such as China.

Verdict: While social gaming’s hype enjoyed only a short reign of dominance in the overall market, it is still a home for many popular casual and strategy MMO games and continues steady revenue growth each year.

Looking forward, each of the platforms discussed can expect to maintain a big role for gamers.

Mobile games will, by early 2015, be king — they’ll attract more players and make more money than any sector of the industry has ever done before. But mobile will never get to experience a sense of complacency as augmented reality and virtual reality continue to mature and inevitably change the landscape. Only time will tell what kind of effect this will have on the market.

Gabi Shalel is the chief marketing officer and a co-founder of Plarium, a social and mobile game developer with over 130 million users worldwide and 3 million daily active users. Since the company’s inception in 2009, Gabi has directed marketing initiatives to support the launch of popular titles, including Stormall: Rise of Balur and Total Domination: Reborn.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Article courtesy of SocialTimes Feed

SapientNitro Enters Partnership With Facebook Marketing Partner Adaptly

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Adaptly, a Facebook Marketing Partner, announced recently that the company has partnered with SapientNitro, a Publicis company.

With the strategic partnership, Adaptly will become the agency’s social ad technology partner in North America, enabling SapientNitro to leverage Adaptly’s services to improve social advertising opportunities for clients.

SapientNitro has used Adaptly’s media buying technology since 2014, but this partnership will allow the company to offer better solutions for clients.

Sean Black, SapientNitro’s North American director of innovation and strategic partnership, commented on the announcement:

Paid social media advertising is at the top of our clients’ priority list. These growing autonomous marketing platforms address our most critical needs, and deliver the right combination of precise targeting and massive audience scale. Adaptly’s enabling technology is the industry standard and its well-established relationships as an API partner to Facebook, Twitter, and Kik will help us optimize our media performance and mount more effective social advertising campaigns.

Nikhil Sethi, Adaptly’s co-founder and CEO, offered his thoughts on the partnership:

We are pleased to formalize our partnership with SapientNitro. They have done remarkable work for brands like Borgata Casino, Regions Bank, Visit Florida, First Niagara, Vail Resorts, Bayer Crop Science, Ideal Image, KPMG and Nutella. We look forward to growing our relationship and helping SapientNitro clients become major players within the autonomous marketing platforms ecosystem.

Article courtesy of SocialTimes Feed

Commandments For The Speed Of Security

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Defense Secretary Tries To Thaw Relations With Silicon Valley, Opens New ‘Defense Innovation Unit X’

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