Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year

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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Software on tap: SaaS and ASP are really not the same

I launched MS Word today, it's 24 years old! Don't you have enough? Don't you think time has come for a new software paradigm. Do you like Word? What do you do in e-mail then? This industry has come to a conclusion that software could very well migrate to it's editor servers. It started with hosting, then ASP, and now SaaS (also called on demand applications) is coming around.
Conventional wisdom has coined it at the same thing but it's not. But an ASP delivers your monolithic application at distance, that's all it does. Those who believe ASP and SaaS are the same thing have just missed the Web 2.0 paradigm shift where the web has become an application platform. In fact "application" is not a proper term, where as "application services" better describes what is happening. You probably know Facebook by now. If you don't go ahead and build your friend community there. As I recently stated, one of the major success factor of facebook lies in its application platform strategy. The beauty of it is that users are defining a unique user interface to THEIR facebook by adding application to their home page. Customization, as we know it, is king. Gone the days when software vendors would define frozen user interfaces e.g. MS Word.
But this new way of combining small applications, or widgets, into a dedicated user customized portal has reached the enterprise. Yes! Enterprise mashups are coming up. Do you know Longjump? You don't, then just go there for a test drive. It speaks for itself far better than a long post of mine.
This is the destination: mixable enterprise widgets or applets on tap. You pay as you drink it. Software is a service, isn't it?
Bye bye MS Word and all the monolithic applications, whether on your PC, your servers or with your ASP. Time has come for SaaS to thrive.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Technology's 10 Most Mortifying Moments

Just for fun, I could not resist but to share with you this article on Computer World Technology's 10 Most Mortifying Moments. You probably remember all of them, but even if you do you'll have a great laugh.
Let's just end the week like this. We'll be back on more serious topics next week like what is the difference between ASP and SaaS?
My favorite is still Ballmer dancing on stage. I wish I could be there to see people

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Social Networking: the facebook mashup effect

I'm a recent facebook user. I knew about facebook for quite a while but I thought, as probably most of you, that it was a youngster phenomena. I'm no longer a youngster if anyone in doubt out there ;-) . This comes as no surprise as Facebook was created in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg, Harvard graduate, and restricted at first to Harvard College students, then to other Boston area schools. More details on Facebook history here. On May 24, 2007, Facebook launched an API that allows the development of applications to be used on the site, known as Facebook Platform. A defining moment that illustrated one more time this web 2.0 postulate that the web is now an application platform.

When inviting some of my friends to facebook, I sometime needs to explain to the most reluctant among them why this social network site is THE one. I think this ability to mashup tens if not hundreds of cool applications to leverage your friends network is sticky. It gives your facebook a constantly evolving face, a user interface typically webtop where users do refine it as they use it -- see We're moving from Desktop to Webtop. The real-time informations about your friends (mood, networks, events, ...) gives it another reason for it to be addictive. Some of them even joined a group called "I facebook too much" demonstrating the addiction.

As you can see in the Alexa graph, Facebook is on its way in 2007 to surpass the MySpace phenomena. More than the success of social networking as one of the Web 2.0 killing applications, I see it as a clear indication that mashups and webtop will prevail in the future. Fellow software vendors, take it as a home run. Enterprise 2.0 software should take this into account as well, as it will not remain a consumer phenomena. Large corporations do need social networking. In the coming months, we should see tremendous repositioning around this and some of the software vendors could just enter obsolescence allowing for a new software leaders generation. Beware!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Blogging future: leverage the long tail opportunity

I've been spending an interesting afternoon at Apple Expo in Paris yesterday with my dear friend Christophe Ginisty. Beside being Apple's PR, he's also renowned for his blogging activity. He organized a debate about blogging future. Asking candid, or was it, questions about whether blogging is just a fading trend or a ramping up attitude.

I tried to make a point there that I wanted to share with you. Blogging is to press media what video sharing (YouTube, DailyMotion) is to TV, and Music sharing (MySpace) is to Records. Blogs success in my opinion lies in the ability for anyone to publish articles without a financial equation supporting it and with very low barriers to entry. Blogging is free and easy (no web design skills required), to be compared with the press where audience must be as large as possible for advertising revenue to enable it, and where printing or broadcasting requires technical and financial muscle. The same is true for video and music production and distribution compared to the new free or close to free e-capabilities.

Blogging, publishing music and video on the net doesn't require a large audience either to be possible. It is enough to have a few hundred interested people and you can keep going. But adding up these very diverse communities of interest leads to a massive audience. This is the long tail opportunity that the net offers. To be compared to Business 2.0 magazine not publishing anymore, despite facebook community trying to rescue, by economic failure.

So to me, all these individual contributions to the blogosphere, videosphere, photosphere and musicsphere are here to stay, widen and provide a huge creativity and freedom expression area without a capitalistic equation attached.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

2007 major Marketing 2.0 trends

We're entering our last quarter of the year and we should be stepping back, before the final rush for '07 revenue, to analyze this amazing year and its trends. Marketing, Business and the Web -- Web 2.0 flavored of course -- have never been more inter-weaved. This is why I called this Marketing 2.0 trends.
Let me give you my list, you'll be able to hammer me in a few month when reading back all of this:

1. Eco-responsible: we've been talking about it for months if not years, but I guess '07 is the milestone year for eco-responsible attitude in business as much as in our day-to-day life

2. Rise of e-commerce: we've discussed the numbers earlier this year here on Marketing 2.0, and there's no doubt e-commerce is no longer a fantasy but accounts for a significant part of the business either B2B or B2C. You cannot ignore it or consider it secondary.

3. Transparency: consumers demand relationships with brands mirroring the relationships they have in the real world and above all they demand transparency. Whether they'll get this transparency from the brand directly or relying on user generated content to elaborate it, they'll get it. If it's the latter, your brand is in trouble. Remember: you don't want to get Dell'd.

4. Community consumption: no longer do consumers rely on the press and vendors to choose. They increasingly rely on community advices for guidance. It is your job to influence communities, transparently please, as well as build your own communities.

5. Intangible real value: on top of it, we do buy virtual products and services for real money. Did you notice how many e-economy firms got the highest market caps? This goes generally with a positive buzz vortex on the web. You can no longer ignore your brand e-attributes and pay attention to e-competition.

6. Meconomy: as the Time magazine cover once highlighted in designating the man of the year as "YOU", consumers are focused on 'me, myself and I'. Personalization, customization, customer centric are a must to succeed. And they'll be asking this question: "what makes me happy?". Yes, happiness has become a valued because increasingly out of sight.

7. Open for global business: there are no boundaries to memory anymore. You act local? We take it global. No one can anymore think its business strategy in isolation. The fast growing emerging economies (China, India, Brazil to name a few) unleashing new buying patterns and new global brands (Lenovo, Mittal, ...) are already changing your plans. You'll be selling there or be sold.

My fellow marketers, what a thrilling world! Feel free to comment and contribute, we'll be looking at this for the next few months.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Customer equity to drive your marketing ROI

During my Lotus years, I've been given the opportunity to meet Mike Zisman our CEO at the time. One of his statement stayed with me since then: "The purpose of any enterprise is to acquire new customers and retain existing ones. Product an services are only a means to that end." It sounded a bit simplistic initially, but my experience in several companies since then reinforced my conviction of the importance and truthfulness of this statement.

During my marketing journey, I discovered the notion of customer lifetime value (CLV), more complex to comprehend and so effective to coin what your marketing focus should be and furthermore how to present it to your team. It also allows to present to CEOs and shareholders the real value ($) of customer loyalty.

Here comes customer equity that definitely coins the term that best represent all of this. You now can think of CLV as an an additional equity to the shareholders or the brand ones.What if you could revise Marketing ROI and fine tune your marketing course of actions based on this equation coming from Roland T. Rust in Advertising Age : "The ROI is simply calculated as the projected increase in customer equity minus the discounted [marketing] investment divided by the investment."

But how do you calculate customer equity with real numbers? Now we're talking ;-)
Well, a number of tangible and intangible enters into this and I do not necessary agree with Roland Trust in his article. I'd refer you to Customer Equity Calculations dedicated site, and will come back on this later on. To approach it, just think of customer equity as the total of the discounted lifetime value of all of its customers. I know, not that intuitive.

To be continued ...

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Enterprise 2.0 is here to stay

Fellow marketers, I've been away for quite some time, focusing on some quality time without a computer (can you believe that?). I'm back, energized and ready to roll!

I wanted to open it up to a new topic, here on Marketing 2.0, that is keeping my team busy for quite some time now: Enterprise 2.0.

I'm sure you heard the buzz word before and maybe took a more in depth look at it. But I guess for those working in the IT industry and already involved in the Web 2.0 phenomena it's the natural question to ask ourselves: what are the Web 2.0 attributes, social behaviors and underpinning technologies bringing to the enterprise? Is this only about taking blogs, wikis, RSS feeds and what have you, to your intranet? Or is it a more profound paradigm shift that will finally unleash the expected new enterprise species of the new millennium?

You bet some of our gurus have been writing and pitching about it as the yearly Enterprise 2.0 conference can attest. Let's hear some of the most visible. First of all, spend about 10mn to view this introductory video on ZDNet Web 2.0 for the enterprise.
You can then take the direct and simple view of Andrew McAfee's Enterprise 2.0 definition:
"Enterprise 2.0 is the use of emergent social software platforms within companies, or between companies and their partners or customers."
Of course what Andrew develops beyond that definition is more complex but is basically centered around a new stage in knowledge management. But I am more in sync with Don Tapscott's views about it. If you did not read at least one of Don's best sellers, I encourage to start with Wikinomics. To give you a feel for it:
"The rise of pervasive, networked IT is fostering new business strategies and designs that enable firms to create differentiated value, lower cost structures and therefore increase their competitive advantage. A new model of the firm is emerging – the Enterprise 2.0. Firms that embrace this model succeed and compete well. Those that do not decline."
If you're now thrilled and ready to spend 40mn or so, listen to Don's pitch at the Enteprise 2.0 conference. It's fun and enlightening.
Finally, and to close this first post about Enterprise 2.0, I found Fred Cavazza's in depth post What is Enterprise 2.0? about it very useful to provide a solid 360 view.
Stay tuned for more, Enterprise 2.0 is here to stay.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

User-generated content spans interest across generations

User-generated content and other web 2.0 trends, one would think, are mostly driven by teenagers and young adults. On the contrary. Here is an interesting research lead by Harrison Group (an independent research services firm) conducted from February through March 2007, showing that both the old and young generations enjoy reading magazines and are receptive to print ads. Additionally 51% of U.S. consumers are interested in watching and reading user-generated contents.
Harrison Group categorizes them as young Millennials (ages 13 to 24), Generation X (25 to 41), Baby Boomers (42 to 60) and older Matures (61 to 75). Here are some of the findings (read more on Deloitte site and Are you ready for the future of media? ):

High Demand for User-Generated Content
  • 40 percent of all survey respondents are making their own entertainment (editing movies, music and photos)
    • 25 percent of Matures
    • 56 percent of all Millennials; leading Millennials (18-24) participate more
  • More than one in 10 Millennials are actively uploading their own videos on the Internet
  • 51 percent of all survey respondents are watching/reading content created by others
  • 71 percent of Millennials, 56 percent of Xers; Boomers/Mature participation is less, but noteworthy
  • 53 percent of Millennials would download more videos if connection speeds were faster
  • One-third of online content viewing is done on user-generated sites
    • Almost ¼ for Matures, ½ for Millennials
This reinforces our belief that user-generated content is expanding its impact on several industries as media, software, music, videos, TV, ... Stay tuned for more.

By the way, let's celebrate our first Marketing 2.0 birthday. It's been already a year since I started my English-French blog about Marketing in the web 2.0 era. Thanks to you this blog is spanning its influence in many countries and I enjoy many more subscribers every day. Keep it growing. Thanks to you all.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Who needs a PC? HP acquires Neoware for its thin Linux client technology

Intelligence seems to take place on the network these days. What about this amazing breaking news of HP acquiring Neoware for $16.25 per share i.e. $214 million announced today. Check out the news.
It strikes me as HP is the leading vendor in PCs and yet they place their bet on a thin client, but a Linux one, as they want to take advantage of virtualization technology. But pay attention to this: Neoware is the third-largest thin client vendor, after Wyse and HP. Wow, if this is not a big bet on the webtop, I should just change job and move to the pharmaceutical industry.

More importantly, it seems that HP was attracted by the mobile thin client computing paradigm as reports:
"During the past year, Neoware has claimed a couple of "firsts" in thin client computing. Its m100 thin client notebook, introduced last October, was touted as the first device aimed at extending the security benefits of network computing to mobile workers. And, in March, it announced a new VDI Edition family of thin clients aimed at virtualized client computing systems. These clients appear to have been instrumental in convincing HP to acquire the company. "

Who still needs a PC?

Learn more about thin client computing, virtualization on wikipedia and listen to this podcast about state of virtualization on eweek.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Online surpasses radio ads, user-generated content sites make more than $1.6 billion

It's been a while since we didn't bend back on numbers. Here are some good news on the online ad spend for 2007, coming from, that I wanted to share with you. If you don't want to read it all, here is a quick summary:
  • eMarketer is raising its 2007 forecast from $19.5 billion to $21.7 billion i.e. from 18.9% to 28.6% growth closer to the 30% growth seen for the last 3 years
  • they even see 2008 stronger with 30% growth to a total $28.8 billion, thanks to the US presidential elections
  • 2009 will slow down a bit to 18.1%,
but hey they've been pessimistic for 2007 so let's wait and see. Here is the quote I like most:
" Online advertising as a share of the total media budget will surpass radio this year, eMarketer said, and top 10% next year." -- Advertising Age, June 2007

Come on, one last to hit the road: WW user-generated content sites will earn $1.6 billion in ad revenue for 2007 moving to $8.2 billion in 2011, predicts eMarketer. Marketing 2.0 finally makes money, isn't it?

Saturday, June 23, 2007

We're moving from Desktop to Webtop

"Microsoft and IBM executives Wednesday admitted feeling heat from Google now that the Web search giant is trying to make inroads into the enterprise market with its hosted suite of communication and collaboration tools." says NetworkWorld.

Desktop productivity suites -- i.e. Microsoft and Open Office -- are beginning to appear as legacy apps for younger internet user generation. If you think about it, up to a few years ago, our desktop was application centric. You'd have to think about what application to use to either create, edit or read information. In this antic time, still valid for conservative users, Office was the place where we'd live on our desktop. Not anymore for Internet centric users, especially 15-24 years old.

Multimedia content, supported with the advent and success of Youtube, flickr,, and others not to forget podcasts, is paving the way to another information form factor. As a matter of fact, information streams to you via RSS feeds sitting on your desktop via Netvibes personal portal on the web and various widgets. Google apps are starting to give a clear headway towards SaaS collaborative "desktop" productivity applications, not to mention they've just completed another step in completeness with Tonic acquisition -- a presentation sharing and collaboration solution for Powerpoint slides.

To sum it up, I believe we've moved from Desktop to Webtop with several key implication:
  • Our digital environment is no more sitting on our PC but on the network,
  • Our environment is no longer application centric but user centric i.e. information is flowing your way whatever the application required to exploit it should be. Various alerts are pacing your information day from blogs, information sites, our mailbox and calendar,
  • Users are empowered to design their environment, not software vendors!
Webtop is a personalized web hosted desktop that you can use everywhere, from any device, that no software vendor would design for you. This is pure Web 2.0 attitude: users are designing their webtop "app" aggregating various components in an iterative and collaborative way -- users recommend widgets and apps to others. Gone the day when software vendors were dictating their view of the world. Folks, we're in charge again. And webtop already have vendors, check out Goowy.

Microsoft colleagues, can you feel the heat?

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Widgets reach 21% of the WW internet audience n April

Just a very quick one fellow marketers, I found out this number on AdvertisingAge and could not resist but share it with you. Widgets reached about 21% of the worldwide internet audience in April, ComScore -- who started to track widgets usage accross the web -- found. About 40% of widget use, or 81 million of those people, came from North America. (a cool slide sharing site) had the largest reach, followed by RockYou, Picturetrail and Photobucket, all photo sharing sites.

ComScore defines widgets as shockwave data files embedded into a site's HTML code.

"The reach that widgets have is going to surprise a lot of people," said Max Levchin, founder and CEO of Slide. "What advertisers are ultimately interested in is what are people looking at, not what page."

Widget advertising! So coool.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Google Gears: last mile to a 100% web based application world?

In a meeting recently, in my new job at Sage, we were discussing with R&D about the client model in our new world. Interesting debate among specialists that are seeing the world through RIA (Rich Internet Application), RDA (Rich Desktop Application) and the fading 100% HTML or client/server models. It clearly shows we've been moving fast in a connected world were web based applications are weaving into desktop based applications.

Tectonic moves are taking place between Microsoft, with the Silverlight new cross-platform and cross-browser Internet platform, Adobe's Apollo run-time and the newly announced Google Gears Javascript API to let web applications work off-line. Read Information Week Why Google Gears Is Good News, Bad News For Microsoft article for a better understanding of the landscape and browse through the 92 news articles about it.

But now the non connected world enters web based applications and the very last argument pleading for desktop based applications is just going away, even before being connected to the Internet will be as natural as receiving daylight (a bit futuristic I must admit, but you know me by now I like to provoke). Give it a try and install it. Are you as curious as I am to see what the next Google/Microsoft battle is going to be?

One thing for sure: user's information environment is already partly on the web and on his desktop. I'm not a big fan of this as users need to decide before searching or operating where the information might be or be sure they carry a laptop with them at all times. My bet is user's information are going to move 100% on the web with a solid secure access and backup. The device we will be using to access and manipulate this data is secondary and might just be borrowed when we need it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Microsoft finally strikes back

Even on holidays, I could not escape the news: Microsoft finally made its mind on how to enter the $125 billion Advertising Market, they acquired aQuantive on May 18th for $6 billion.

Interestingly enough, not only do they acquire one of the most powerful web media buyer but they also acquire web design services through its Avenue A/Razorfish division.

One thing is sure, as I was wondering after Google's DoubleClick acquisition in "Would you have Google as your middleman", Microsoft had an answer to the Internet titan move. Sad news for web ad agencies, competition and battleground have changed in your world within a few weeks (see chart). Read this Microsoft Storms Madison Avenue article in AdvertisingAge for more on the earthquake.

But folks, let me enjoy my vacation fully, I'll be back in June.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Would you have Google as your middle man?

First of all thanks to those of you asking me to write more often, much appreciated. One of the reason I didn't write too much recently lies in the fact that I started to work in a new company and I'm overwhelmed with new information to absorb and categorize. I wish I had a Wiki built in my brain, so everyone could contribute. But that would be brain 2.0 isn't it?

So fellow marketers, I'll be getting back to a better post frequency as soon as possible and of course I'll let you know rapidly what company decided to have me on board. The one thing I can tell you at this point is that I'm back to the Enterprise Application Software gang. It's going to rock there and I'll be writing about it in the near future.

I just wanted to drive your attention to this interesting joint Intel and Google announcement I read in Advertising Age: Intel, Google Join Forces for 'Virtual Marketing Storefront'. Let's get rid of the bells and whistles, Intel is agreeing to have Google as the middle man to manage partners co-marketing on-line (at least for on-line advertising for now). Strange move isn't it, and I don't buy it. If one vendor is serious about his ecosystem, one needs to manage it and not leave this to third parties having a biased interest that might hurt the vendor's strategy.
I don't have anything against Google, and I should say I praise them to have vigorously made Web 2.0 strong, but I would not let Google be my middle-man, instead I'd have Google be my ecosystem provider. Not to mention that Intel's partners would probably benefit from an integrated approach to their co-marketing experience with Intel. On-line advertising is far from being enough.

Apart from this, if you didn't notice Google's accelerated pace to expand their business footprint, here is a quote that says it all:
"This month alone, the company has announced its intent to acquire ad-placement giant DoubleClick; struck a deal with Clear Channel Radio to sell ads on its radio stations; added support from several major radio-station systems for its Google AdSense for Audio program; and partnered with EchoStar to sell TV commercials over the satellite broadcaster's Dish Network. " -- Beth Snyder Bulik, Advertising Age
Hey fellows at Microsoft, it's about time for you to react to try to grab some of the $125 billion advertising market Steve Ballmer claimed he was after.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

What business are we in: Software or advertising? Google latest news

I just couldn't help but coming back on Google (GOOG) latest news, accelerating innovation and dominance -- read Google expands office software for more on -- attacking both Yahoo and Microsoft at the same time :

"Google announced Friday it would pay $3.1 billion to acquire ad-management technology company DoubleClick Inc....Google announced the acquisition Tuesday of Tonic Systems Inc., a startup based in San Francisco and Melbourne, Australia. The company specializes in collaborative presentation software and is expected to contribute to future versions to Google's productivity suite." --

This InformationWeek Google's Deal For DoubleClick Could Be The End Of Yahoo article emphasizes the advertising acquisition even more, and finally here is what reported on about the Google Clear Channel deal:

"Google Inc. and broadcaster Clear Channel Communications Inc. have signed a multi-year advertising sales agreement under which Google will start selling its advertising on radio stations, thereby making its entry into what is described as offline media -- radio, TV and even print publications."

If you didn't realize that Google is clearly moving on two fronts at the same time, SaaS dominance together with entering end-to-end advertising via the on-line door, you've just been living on an island without any kind of media access since January! No later than today, MediaDailyNews reports about how the ad industry major players are reacting about it: Google Looms Over Ad Research Summit, Seen More As Friend Than Enemy.

What business are we in folks? Software or advertising ... it may be both.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

State of the Blogosphere

The blogosphere is just expanding like crazy. But you might wonder: what are the numbers? Thanks to Technorati, delivering numbers on a quarterly basis, here are the latest trends released and commented by Dave Sifry in his post The State of the Live Web last week:
  • 70 million blogs are currently tracked
  • About 120,000 new blogs are created each day, or...1.4 new blogs every second
  • 3000-7000 new splogs (fake, or spam blogs) created every day
  • Peak of 11,000 splogs per day last December
  • 1.5 million posts per day, or...17 posts per second
  • Growing from 35 to 75 million blogs took 320 days
  • Japanese the #1 blogging language at 37%, English second at 33%, Chinese third at 8%, Italian fourth at 3%, Farsi a newcomer in the top 10 at 1%
  • English the most even in postings around-the-clock
One quote gives you a feel for whether blogs are a fad or here to stay:
"Since our last State of the Blogosphere report in October 2006, we’ve seen a slowing in the doubling of the size of the blogosphere. This shouldn't be surprising, as we're dealing with the law of large numbers - it takes a lot more growth to double from 35 million blogs to 70 million (which took about 320 days) than when it doubled from 5 million to 10 million blogs (which took about 180 days)." -- Dave Sifry
Interesting as well is the popularity of blogs compared with traditional or media websites. During Q3 2006 there were only 12 blogs in the Top 100 most popular sites, in Q4 this is rising to 22. Even more, the audience tends to distinguish less and less blogs from official media sites as NYTimes and considers blogs as news providers. Is this the rise of Press 2.0?

Enjoy and spread the numbers out there. Blogs should be part of your Marketing 2.0 dashboard.

Monday, April 02, 2007

WOMM: Marketing 2.0 lethal weapon

One of the most critical dimension of Marketing 2.0 lies in Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM). As defined in wikipedia:
"it is a term used in the marketing and advertising industry to describe activities that companies undertake to generate personal recommendations as well as referrals for brand names, products and services."
WOMM in my opinion was first identified by Regis McKenna when describing the market infrastructure in his aging book The Regis Touch. WOMM now has its association Word of Mouth Marketing Association and his guru Word Of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking - Andy Sernovitz. As Andy puts it, here is his WOMM Manifesto:
"1. Happy customers are your best advertising. Make people happy.
2. Marketing is easy: Earn the respect and recommendation of your
customers. They will do your marketing for you, for free.
3. Ethics and good service come first.
4. UR the UE: You are the user experience (not what your ads say you are).
5. Negative word of mouth is an opportunity. Listen and learn.
6. People are already talking. Your only option is to join the conversation.
7. Be interesting or be invisible.
8. If it’s not worth talking about, it’s not worth doing.
9. Make the story of your company a good one.
10. It is more fun to work at a company that people want to talk about.
11. Use the power of word of mouth to make business treat people better.
12. Honest marketing makes more money." -- Andy Sernovitz
Let's make sure you've got a WOMM plan embedded in your coming PR activities. It is cheap, mostly effective, but terribly difficult to ramp up. Who are the individuals you're targeting? How do you approach them without sounding too much biased? How do you recognize them? With what stories and messages do you nurture them? All these questions need to be addressed prior initiating your WOMM as WOMM is Marketing 2.0 lethal weapon.

- Image courtesy of The influencers at

Friday, March 23, 2007

Let's support sales performance

Several years ago I discovered Sergio Zyman in Paris when he was conferencing for his new book "The end of marketing as we know it". He's not bringing some rocket science to marketing but effectively highlights and helps us focus on the do's and don't of an effective marketing. As a matter of fact, he left me with this quote that I keep in mind at all times:
"The sole purpose of Marketing is to sell more to more people, more often and for more money." -- Sergio Zyman

In light of this quote, I'm always focused on filling the gap between sales and marketing, making sure sales reps are perceiving added value from marketing activities. If you do not enjoy good business relationship with your sales counterpart, start asking yourself what is to be changed in your deliverables. Marketing success is about increasing revenue and lowering cost of sales. Whether in Marketing 1.0 or Marketing 2.0 it makes no difference.

I'm bringing this up as I recently read some interesting numbers about Sales performance Benchmarks, and I wanted to share with you the striking ones out of this survey from 1,300 companies across all industries:
  • Only 60% of sales reps are making or exceeding quotas.
  • Only 37% of firms report they have implemented a formal sales process.
  • 63% of revenue comes from existing business, while 37% comes from new business
  • Only 38% of companies have what they would call "forecasting accuracy."
  • Most have close rates of under 50% of proposals written (average=48%).
This Lewis Green post says it all:
"For at the end of the day, our bottom lines and the value of what we do are measured in sales, not direct mail campaigns, sell sheets or packaging....I also believe that sales and marketing staffs should be in one department and should work closely together on every step of the process, from understanding the customers, to strategic marketing and sales planning, to closing sales" -- Lewis Green
Fellow Marketers, we're in charge on this. Let's make it happen.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Market segmentation to increase attitudinal loyalty

I mentioned behavioral targeting recently on Marketing 2.0 as a way to increase marketing effectiveness. I wanted to come back on this topic in light of a datasheet that you can download from Omniture, to share with you a tip about successful segmentation as described in Wikipedia.

"The requirements for successful segmentation are: homogeneity within the segment, heterogeneity between segments, segments are measurable and identifiable, segments are accessible and actionable, segment is large enough to be profitable.
These criteria can be summarized by the word ADAMS:
  • A Actionable: you must have a product for this segment
  • D Differential: it must respond differently to a different marketing mix
  • A Accessible: it must be possible to reach it efficiently
  • M Measurable: size and purchasing power can be measured
  • S Substantial: the segment has to be large and profitable enough" -- Wikipedia
I won't come back on all segmentation variables (Geographic, Demographic, Psychographic and Behavioral), you can follow the links for more, but I wanted to highlight the behavioral ones: benefit sought, product usage rate, brand loyalty, product end use, readiness-to-buy stage, decision making unit as Wikipedia refers to it in the Marketing 1.0 world. This is still valid of course, but new dimensions do appear with Marketing 2.0 especially around behavioral analysis. Thanks to web techniques you can easily track, using cookies for instance, what a prospect did before landing on your web site and what retained their attention.

More interesting, in our web 2.0 world, is the way a prospect, or for that matter, a customer expresses his relationship to your brand. This has changed significantly with the web 2.0 advent. As a matter of fact, behavioral targeting and market segmentation offers a powerful way to dialog differently with each segment. Defining your segments along the lines of attitudinal loyalty -- more on customer loyalty on wikipedia -- and remembering ADAMS rules will guide you to the appropriate solution to improve it.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Web 2.0 goes mobile: 2.7 Billion phones out there

As I was looking for some numbers to support my yesterday's post, I found this very interesting one Communities Dominate Brands: Putting 2.7 billion in context: Mobile phone users, from authors of this Communities Dominate Brands book I didn't read yet, providing interesting metrics to think about:
"800 million cars, 850 million personal computers, 1.3 B fixed land line phones, 1.4 billion credit cards, 1.5 billion TV sets. How many mobile phones in use today? In use today, yes, 2.7 billion. They sold 950 million phones last year and the total worldwide mobile subscriber base grew from 2.1 billion to 2.7 billion. Three times as many mobile phones as automobiles or personal computers. About twice as many mobile phone owners as those of fixed land line phones or credit cards. And almost twice as many mobile phones in use as TV sets." -- Let's draw a rapid conclusion here, mobile phones or more widely Mobile devices will have the next big impact on the web as carriers evolve their business model for Internet access to a flat monthly fee as for broadband. The next massive disruption on the net is already happening: Web 2.0 goes mobile. Consumers will voice their opinion, pictures and videos to share visual news taking place close to them directly from their phones!

Tell me fellow marketers, would you ignore this bidirectional medium when you know Marketing 2.0 is already here? What a big bet!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Mobile Marketing: use it carefully, but use it

I was attending Ad Tech Paris yesterday, a good way to capture on-line advertising trends. Among other interesting sessions, I was appealed by the mobile advertising one called "Mobile advertising – the long and winding road" coordinated by the Mobile Entertainment Forum (MEF). Speakers, see picture from left to right, were Marc-Henri Magdelenat -- Screentonic, Minh Tran -- Nokia Mobile Advertising, Patrick Parodi -- Amobee & MEF, Richard Saggers -- Vodafone and our moderator Gilles Babinet -- Eyeka.

They covered a lot of ground to explain how important was mobile advertising among our marketing tactics and how unique was its approach. Not to forget for instance that permission marketing in this space is mandatory, nothing is more personal than your phone, right? Mobile Phones are the only new device that people carry all the time since watches were introduced. Some do even sleep with these! Keep in mind as well that consumers are actually paying to receive adverts so we should keep ads short and relevant. And finally, coupons on mobile phones -- yes, bar codes on your phone to present to the store you're in or close to -- are far easier to use for consumers than traditional ones or even web ones, especially when coupled with your location.

Having experienced the mobile industry at Sun Microsystems myself, when marketing the Java platform, I could not agree more to the effectiveness of mobile marketing. Europe and Asia are for sure ahead of the curve about it, as mobile devices connected to the Internet are spreading fast there. The UK even have a dedicated web-zine about it called Mobile Marketing Magazine. Amazing!

But I think some key aspects were eluded during the conference. Mobile phones do have key attributes that can nurture marketing ROI:
  • Authentication: we know who you are for sure,
  • Payment: your Telco provider can charge you for what you buy or consume with it, opening an opportunity for Telcos to become trusted party for e-commerce,
  • Impulse and web 2.0: as you carry your phone with you all the time, nothing would be more natural than to use it for an impulsive buying decision and to channel back your opinion to the brand right away.
Not to mention that within the next 3 to 5 years, mobile devices will become the primary Internet access for consumers, as Japan experienced already. The user experience will significantly improve as well, check the iPhone introduction by Steve jobs here in Marketing 2.0 to get a feel for it.

Marketing 2.0 minded marketers cannot ignore mobile marketing when planning for the next campaign. Consider it for sure in your mix, but very carefully as this could be a double edge sword.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

iPhone launch: rehearse what product introduction should be

iPhone is out for Oscars. If you didn't get a chance to see the movie on Apple homepage, have a look it here on Marketing 2.0 from YouTube.
This movie -- created by TBWA Media Arts Lab, Los Angeles (a unit of longtime Apple shop TBWA/Chiat/Day) -- has been screened 3 times during the Oscar broadcast and marks the first time since long that Apple advertises for a not yet available product. It is a clear indication that the buzz is going to get huge.

Steve Jobs previewed the iPhone during the MacWorld conference, early January in San Francisco - watch his Keynote address and rehearse again how product introduction should be done even when the product is not yet around ;-) . As usual, Apple demonstrates its ability to redefine an entire market by setting the bar about design and usability. Stay tuned, I'm convinced the iPhone is going to be a big hit if priced properly.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

More than 1Billion Internet users WW

This is the kind of data you often need but do not have at hand. Internet users, defined here as someone who uses the Internet at least once per month, reached 1 Billion individuals in 2006 according to the ITU i.e. 17% of the world population.

The US is still the leading market but China will probably take the lead before the end of the decade says eMarketer. South Korea has the most important penetration ratio with 70.5% of its population already Internet users. In Europe Germany is the widest market with 39.4M Internet users. Take a look at the chart above for more details.

Morgan Stanley in The State of the Internet, Part III forecasts interesting demographics and behaviors that we should integrate in our Marketing 2.0 plans:
  • "The Internet continues to go global
  • Online video is gaining momentum
  • User-generated content properties have moved to the top of the pack, owing to their focus on community and personalization
  • Longer term, monetization should grow faster than usage, which should grow faster than users. Global Internet thesis calls for 10-15% user growth, 20-30% usage growth, and 30%+ monetization growth." -- Morgan Stanley
Don't worry fellow e-marketers, our business can only grow!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

My Sun's journey is over: Marketing 2.0 can be on your side

31 January was my last day at Sun Microsystems Inc. After a passionate and exciting 4 years journey I'm now headed to new ventures. As many Sun alumni, I miss the people more than anything else.
What stroke me when I joined back in 2003 was the Sun's bold approach to IT. "The network is the computer" tag line was not just a marketing gimmick, but a genuine belief aimed at changing the way the world would see and appropriate computing forever. The Internet bubble left Sun in a bad shape with a 50% revenue decrease at that time, but the dot com spirit was still there because it was more than just a business opportunity, it was a raison d'etre.
This way of living digital got in my face when I first joined an internal meeting. I saw executives just sliding their employee badge in a Sun Ray, a thin client device, retrieving instantly their environment and the slides they were about to present though miles away from their usual office. Where is their laptop was I thinking to myself? What a strange crowd! Network Computing was a reality and it works great fellow marketers.

I experienced many times Scott McNeally's ability, Sun's CEO at that time, to make unconventional assertion without shaking and against everyone else opinion -- that he used to call "conventional wisdom" with despise. What is amazing is that he was very often right. Scott demonstrated a true inspiring leadership during tough years at Sun. Innovation, humor, and resilience were his attributes. He was easy to access to when present on Sun's campus. Simply human but so smart.

Jonathan Schwartz took over in May 2006. A very bright executive, very passionate. As Sun is achieving its turnaround, Jonathan will have to face a tremendous challenge. He's more than up to it, he can succeed glamorously. Just one recommendation Jonathan, if I may. Don't loose sight of Sun's human capital. I did witness several talented people leaving Sun despite their willingness to stay. It is sad and sends the wrong message. Sun used to be a very good company to work for and attracted the brightest contributors. Good luck to you and good luck to Sun and my ex-colleagues.

As a matter of fact, I get back my freedom of speech and I'm now able to comment on Sun's strategy independently. I'll use that. This also set me free to engage with you if you need some help in your projects. Marketing 2.0 can be on your side.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Michael Dell returns as the CEO: the shake-up is on its way

I've been commenting and highlighting for some time what was appearing to happen at Dell -- you can read all Dell related posts on Marketing 2.0. Dell customers should be glad to see Michael Dell return as the CEO of the company he created and by the way investors as well. Why? Mainly because Michael Dell has always been focused on customers satisfaction.
Let's take a close look in the coming weeks to the concrete changes Michael Dell will initiate to turn things around. To begin with his recent e-mail to Dell employees already indicates that he will attack bureaucracy and develop its global services business.

I would repeat my recommendation, in a pure Marketing 2.0 inspiration:
"Appoint a Marketing 2.0 executive that you'd call Chief Voice of Customers Officer, with Web 2.0 as the only authorized marketing media. Engage the customer community in a genuine, transparent and honest 2 way conversation with your brand."
Of course this is not to be considered as the only thing to be done, but one that could not be forgotten. Customer loyalty is key to any business growth and trust is key to customer loyalty. Trust nowadays demands transparency and genuine customer centric business state of mind. Good luck Michael.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Increase Marketing effectiveness: use behavioral targeting

It's been around for quite a while, the late 90's. But as privacy and technical issues are going away, marketers should consider behavioral targeting in their on-line advertising campaigns.

For those who just missed it, behavioral targeting is the ability to deliver ads to consumers based upon their recent behavior viewing web pages, shopping online for products and services, typing keywords into a search engine or a combination of all three. You can have some more details on and behavioral targeting 101 on iMedia Connection.

Microsoft recently added it to its offering -- read Microsoft adds behavioral targeting - Tech News & Reviews - -- as Yahoo did before as well -- read Yahoo! behavioral targeting.

Interestingly enough, AdAge Digital highlights that Behavioral Targeting becomes The New Killer App for Research. Some even put forward some effectiveness performance:

"The behavioral targeting ads increased ad awareness by 51%, while content targeting resulted in only a 33% boost." -- Snapple

As Marketing 2.0 is all about considering your customers and prospects literally as Stars, this should be no surprise to you that I wanted to stress the use of it as a "must have" advertising tactic. Relevant context is king.

Monday, January 15, 2007

e-commerce revenue over $100 Billion!

Wow! This is a confirmation that e-commerce is now for real and significantly impacts the retail industry. The overall traditional retail business in the US just grew between 2.5% and 3.5% during the 2006 holiday season according to analysts. To be compared with the 26% growth for the retail e-commerce in Nov/Dec 2006 according to comScore Networks (see chart and E-Commerce Hits All-Time High in 2006 ). Daily scores averaged $600M A DAY, with a peak at $667M on December 13 according to comScore, to be compared with the $556M peak in 2005.

For the full year, 2006 online retail spending reached $102 billion, a 25% increase on 2005. Don't ask if Marketing 2.0 needs to deal with e-commerce returns, just make sure your e-commerce web site and entire back office organization is up and running.

Read more about e-commerce in Marketing 2.0.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Internet creation festival

I wanted to highlight a close friend initiative, Christophe Ginisty. He passionately organises an Internet creation festival: Le festival de Romans.

Go ahead, at least on the net, and vote! (you need to read french a bit though ;-) )

I'll let Christophe tell us why:

This event aims to celebrate creativity at a time where the masses can access the Internet. Our goal: demonstrate that the web did set creation free and let an entire new artists generation arise.

Happy new year 2007

On my way for a new venture,
I wanted to wish you a wonderful
and exciting new year.

"Whatever the public blames you for;
cultivate it, it is yourself" -- Jean Cocteau