Small to medium business’s are now looking beyound the cost and resource efficiencies that can be delivered from a cloud enviroment, they are now focused on how a cloud deployment can improve business outcomes and bring strategic value. In a recent study by IBM two thirds of snior managers surveyed had either implemented or intend to implement a cloud service, with over 45% of UK business looking to do so over the next two years.
The most popular reasons identified for doing this are:
- Increased ability for employees to work with greater mobility was number one
- Cost efficiences was named as the number two reason
As cloud continues to be a key priority businesses are looking to technology providers, known as Managed Service Providers (MSPs). The emergence of such MSPs is in response to a significant market shift as SMBs move their business applications to the cloud in order to increase their ability to work in a more mobile and flexible fashion. With limited IT resources, many are looking to a new kind of partner, to help them do this as they seek to off load the management of their IT infrastructure.
“Midsize firms are under increasing pressure to become more efficient and continue to identify new opportunities to grow their business,” explains Lubomir Cheytanov, director of midmarket sales at IBM in the UK and Ireland. “They are looking to local technology providers or MSPs with deep expertise and innovative cloud portfolio to move their business applications to the cloud.”
About the Cloud Research Study:
For the independent study, conducted by YouGov, the opinions of 530 senior managers at small and medium-sized companies in the United Kingdom were surveyed. It was conducted in the second quarter of 2012 to capture current and upcoming business and IT priorities for cloud computing.
If you are looking to transform your business with cloud capabilities why not get in touch or click here for more information
Like it or not, the time for retailers to adopt a mobile strategy is over. Shoppers are using smart phones and mobile devices for all manner of shopping activities, including price comparison, product information, local inventory lookup, reviews, and more. Retailers are striving to improve their mobile shopping experience to meet the demands of today’s connected consumer.
Created by Milo
One of the biggest insights from this year’s findings is that it is those brands that have the skill, and the will, to engage with individuals on a one-to-one basis that stand out. By creating this personal engagement, these brands benefit from a ripple effect into the rest of the community, which is strengthened and invigorated as a result.
The brands that are doing this most actively typically scored highly against our Facebook observable markers of ‘Fan post:Brand post ratio’ and ‘Fan posts interacted with by brand’. On Twitter, ‘Mentions of third party @accounts by @brand’ and ‘Timeliness of response’ were key.
An analysis of patterns around these markers also indicated some interesting differences between approaches to community management in different sectors. While Entertainment brands can create significant reaction to content that they post on social platforms, and have high percentages of fan generated content, the markers showed that they are less likely to respond to fans on Facebook, and on average are slow to respond on Twitter.
Conversely, FMCG and Travel & Leisure brands are the most prolific at acknowledging fans on Facebook, while Media, Travel & Leisure and Services brands are amongst the fastest responders on Twitter.
This poses the question: are Entertainment brands relying too heavily on the value of their naturally shareable content, while missing opportunities to provide value to their communities through one-to-one interaction? The effect of doing both at the same time would seem certain to enhance their social performance even further
Twitter Room for Improvement
While the report card for Facebook makes for encouraging reading, the data shows that brands could be making more of Twitter.
Looking at the brands in the 100 as a whole, the fact that Twitter demands timeliness appears to have been absorbed (see diagram page 20). The top 50 brands for the ‘Timeliness of response’ marker on Twitter scored over 75% of available points, and even the lower quartile were at nearly 50% of available marks. Brands that have set up Twitter with a specific customer service purpose were well represented amongst the fastest responding brands. Media and Travel & Leisure brands featured heavily in the list of those brands doing this well.
However, on the measure of ‘Mentions of third party
@accounts by @brand’ even the highest scoring brands are failing to reach 50% of the total potential scores, and the average score for the 100 was 6 out of 20. This marker, what you might call the ‘conversation marker’,
is the best indicator of a brand’s willingness to employ effective active listening on Twitter, and to use the platform for conversation over broadcasting. On this evidence there is greater potential to be realised here. Technology and Travel & Leisure brands are doing this best at present.
Here are the top 24 – for the full list go HERE
For the full report by Social Brands 100 click HERE
In Peer Review We Trust: Consumer Reviews vs. Other Ad Tactics
Consumer confidence in advertising has been swiftly shifting over the past five years; 7 in 10 internet users now trust brand websites and consumer opinions over traditional forms of marketing and advertising. Where else has consumer confidence in advertising shifted?
created by Flowtown.
Currently, 49 percent — or nearly half — of surveyed consumers learn about food through social networks, and 9 percent have downloaded a mobile food app in the past year. From tweeting about the delectable belgian waffle they just ate and discovering recipes on image-centric cooking blogs to checking into the hottest new restaurants, more food-obsessed people are turning to social media to help satiate their cravings.
Created by Flowtown.
Did you know that a quarter of Twitter users currently connect with brands on Twitter, and over one-third do so to receive promotions and discounts?
The benefits of using Twitter for businesses are numerous. Marketers can use the platform to share content and links, sending traffic back to their e-commerce website or blog, track industry buzz, network and engage, provide customer support and, vitally, position their brand’s message directly in front of advocates and fans.
This infographic from Yell takes a closer look at the business benefits of Twitter. It’s a little basic for veterans, but a great starting point for brands who are still on the fence about how and why Twitter can work for them.
(Source: Yell. Twitter image via Shutterstock.)
I work for a company that for many years sold typewiters, it staggers me sometimes at some of the things we actually do. Have a read and let me know what you think.
A collaboration between the Royal Society of Chemistry, the University of Warwick and IBM has allowed scientists to bring a single 5-ringed molecule to life in a picture, using a combination of clever synthetic chemistry and state-of-the-art imaging techniques.
Once just a doodle on a piece of paper by an RSC scientist, the molecule has been imaged for the first time at an unprecedented resolution using a complex technique known as non-contact atomic force microscopy.
Known as olympicene it is related to single-layer graphite, also known as graphene, and is one of a number of related compounds which potentially have interesting electronic and optical properties, potentially for the next generation of solar cells and high-tech lighting sources such as LEDs.
Take a look at this previous post too.
The economy is not in a good place, but some technology companies are being valued higher than ever. This motion graphic done with What’s Trending, takes a look at whether or not we are heading for another tech bubble burst, or if social media companies — Facebook and Linked In — are really worth what they are being traded for.
Is there such a thing as a free lunch?
What Does Social Media Success Mean to Your Business?
The following infographic depicts 2011 data showcasing how small business owners feel about social media and how small businesses measure what they perceive as success via this marketing channel. More specifically, focusing if small businesses are utilizing social media properly and know how to properly measure ROI.