Posts Tagged 'Web2.0'

Has the mainstream media tweeted too early?

In the recent past I have seen 3 different “editorial-like” posts in the mainstream media (read – newspapers) about twitter and to think that less than 120K Indian’s are tweeting, yet. Is the mainstream media disconnected with the Indian reality and just aping the hype in the western media? To begin with all the articles assumed knowledge of this phenomena and were not educational, to say the least.

Media can definitely act as harbingers of change, but the mechanism to approach it is definitely by briniging the people on board and not just pushing it down the public’s throat, especially when most are either not aware of the phenomena, or have not bought into it, yet. The questions media needs to ask itself is that when an onslaught of new technology – ranging from online presence, blogging, social media and now twitter – comes up what kind of measures do I adopt to get the public onboard, do I have a mechanism to gauge the depth of adoption possible, will my reader identify with this, what role can we play to encourage adoption?

This is going to happen – today with twitter and tomorrow with something else – with the newer technology products, and the better the mainstream media is prepared with a strategy and plan of action, the more beneficial it is for the readers. Not to forget, this nation is still largely influenced by traditional media – TV, newspapers – what with even Google advertising in newspapers in tier II cities, it is sufficient acknowledgement of the fact.

So, what do you think – on twitter or not? why would you get on? I hope one of the reasons is not because the mainstream media is raving about it!

Social Media Surveys – Not Too Social

Recently I got a survey request. It was for understanding how people use internet and specifically, social media. What struck me the most, was that the surveys we use to understand “social media” is still playing catch up with the concept of social media. You see polls being conducted on social networks, but they are like any other poll that would be conducted through any other medium. It only leverages the easy and instant access of the social media and not the interactivity or consumer content generation aspects of it.

One of the innovative ways to conduct a survey is to keep the options open in the beginning and as users fill out the survey, convert the answers into options. This serves two purposes, when defining a survey one goes through several steps and one of them is talking to/running a sample survey with a few real customers to understand if the options you are suggesting are accurate. With the above idea, it takes away a couple of steps in the process.

Another interesting idea to experiment with could be to let people suggest improvements to questions and answers, enabling the users to judge the improvements and finally, keeping the ones with the most votes/comments/readership.

What do you think, what are some interesting ways to conduct social media-usage surveys? I shall keep updating this list as I come across/think about more ideas…feel free to post yours.

Web2.0 and large corporations

I had a few interns in the office for a few months working with me. I worked on a small experiment and attempted to do a weekly “Out of Box Thinking” – OBT session for a couple of weeks. This was one of the first topics we chose to go over. It was an attempt to understand how large corporations (which are not necessarily in the web2.0 space) resist, adopt, react to and most importantly, leverage them effectively for marketing communications. So, what is it all about?

Getting over the “My Way” of…

…doing things. For many companies the implicit trust of users and going from creating and owning the products to collaborating and crowdsourcing projects is not an easy transition. For most, it is the dilemma of – is it real? is it here to stay? Some companies that have accepted this well is Asus with their WePC concept.

Acknowledging the power of…

…news spread through the viral power of word of mouth and long lasting effects of long tail. In the past, Intel experienced the power of it and more recently, major toy companies and China toy manufacturers had to bear the wrath as the “lead paint” slipped out through the blogs and reached the ear of the masses faster than people could start damage control through traditional media channels and I’m not even beginning to discuss the power of viral marketing and twitter on media, yet.

Harnessing the power of…

…focussed market research & keeping track of social network activities has dawned on companies. Though, not all have been able to make the transition from being passive listeners to active contributors or collaborators yet. When crisis strikes and you need to reach out to people who care through a new media channel (something they trust), it can’t be done in a moment like you would do for a TV commercial, it has to be built over a period of time.

What are the steps your organization is taking to adopt, accept and leverage the power of web2.0?

Asus – Open Product Innovation

Innovation is as broad a topic as it can get, I will nibble at it from a corner and focus on Open Product Innovation today.

I came across this interesting concept website from Asus – wepc. Asus is a PC vendor and has opened up a customer channel for innovation and product thinking through this website. Some of the concepts are highly interesting ranging from a laptop with an integrated projector to a pedant PC (like the sixth sense presentation at TED) to a multi-screen collapsible version.

If Asus is doing this right, they are not just looking at the product concepts, they are looking at validation of trends – for example, if you scroll through the dream PC designs and the votes they have received – some trends become clear, like people seem to be pitching for a hybrid between the phone and the PC which seems to be the next convergence point after consumer-communication and communication-computation that happened earlier with the music phones and Skype on laptop.

There is a definite trend towards enhanced interaction experiences with their phone-cum-laptop-cum-multimedia player devices – which could translate into touch screens, artificial intelligence, personalized look and feel etc…and much more as Asus reads through the trends and benefits.

Now, one might wonder, Asus has this in open, other PC vendors must also be mining this data – why did they chose to be the ones on whose cost the competition benefits? Will a wepc ardent user buy an Asus model vs. Dell/HP/Acer/Lenovo, given the same feature and better pricing?
Maybe, in the laptop world, people don’t really buy unique designs from a given vendor, the more vendors make things, the more a given “similar” kind of design sells because now there is a comparison reference point (Apple being an exception which I don’t want to use to prove a rule)

Food for thought and comments….

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