Unconnected Camping…

My current situation:

Driving (well, sitting in the passenger seat) in my hybrid that is jammed packed full of crap with my two daughters, connected to my laptop via my cellular hotspot.  Why am I writing this now, in the car? Well, because we are headed to Hocking Hills (State Park in Ohio) for spring break and I just found out some devastating news… NO WIFI (and possibly no cell service)!!

I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to talk about this week’s lesson: The future of Internet of Things (IoT)… Say the Internet of whaat?

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, objects, animals or people that are provided with unique identifiers and the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. 

IoT is a big deal because it is our future and not to mention, by the year 2025, it is estimated that IoT will have the economic impact of 11 TRILLION dollars.  It will not be long until we are living in a completely connected society and personally, I couldn’t be more excited! This is an exciting time for marketing peeps because the more we are connected, the more data we obtain about our audiences.  This is also an exciting time for consumers because product designers have the ability to perfectly customize our devices to tailor our needs and provide us with even more convenience!

Welcome to the future smart world:

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So we just made a rest stop and I look up and see this:

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A Tesla (smart car) charging station. Perfect! Couldn’t have been better timing and it makes me super excited.

As I sit here worried about what these next few days will be like not being connected, I wonder if ‘connected camping’ is or will be a thing in the future– because I hope so!

I know many of you might be thinking about the ‘risks’ of being SO connected. Of course with rewards, there are always going to be risks. The risks are a bit scary, too. So I will leave this post on a positive note and save that negativity for another day!

charles

 

 

 

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SOCIAL VIDEOS HIT THE SWEET SPOT

So, I knew I wanted to write this entry about social videos because I personally happen to love, love, love, an emotionally appealing video that tells a story.  I looked all over the internet to find a textbook definition of social video.  No such luck… Bummer.

In sum, social video marketing is when a company creates a digital video (some are shorter than others) that tells a story and is shareable. These videos create buzz. They create conversation, and most importantly, they create connections.  Also important to note that these videos are typically uploaded directly onto a social site.

According to Psychology Today, emotions are the main reason why a person prefers one brand over another. Likewise, people will purchase the name brand over generic with the same ingredients because the brand has made an emotional connection with the consumer. Believe it or not, people identify the same type of personality traits of brands as they do with people. Weird, right? So what does this mean?  It means that by creating a shareable video that is emotionally appealing, you are creating connections between consumers and brands, and ultimately helping establish brand loyalty!

LENGTH MIGHT MATTER

So, how long should the video be?  It’s 2016, that ol’ saying ‘time is a commodity’ is probably an understatement. You’re busy. I’m busy. We’re ALL busy! Seriously, I would be surprised if anyone actually makes it through this entire post. With that being said, shorter videos are typically better for allowing your audience to be engaged the entire time.  Personally, I like a longer video that tells a more in-depth story, but that just might be me.  According to Sprout Social, these were the 2015 statistics:

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There is so much more I could say on this topic, but I know that I have already lost half of my readers at this point. So I will end with one of my all-time favorite social videos. Enjoy!

 

 

DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU ARE BEING FOLLOWED ON THE INTERNET?

Have you ever looked at something online and then become reminded of that something for the next three months via ads on every other site you visit?  No, you are not crazy. No, the CIA is not following your smart watch search. Welcome to the world of retargeting.

WHAT IS RETARGETING AND WHY?!

Retargeting is a powerful tool used by marketers across the land.. It is an optimization and branding tool that is used after a person visits a site on the oh-so-ever glorious internet and does not complete a purchase.  What, you thought you were going to skate out of a purchase and not be tracked thereafter?  Not in 2016, my friend. So how does it work? Well, it goes a little something like this….

You visit a website and browse some vacation rentals in the mountains for you and your friends, but then your phone rings and your friend tells you not to make that purchase because there might be a better deal that she is looking into.  Ok, got it. You exit that website and go about your business as usual.  What you didn’t know is that website had an unnoticable code placed in their website by a retargeting provider. Next, this code has placed retargeting ‘cookies’ into your browser and is now able to track you (wherever you go, I go).  Later that day, you are scrolling through your Facebook feed and what do you know, VACATION RENTALS! Essentially, the marketers want you be reminded of the product and redirect you back to them to finish your purchase.

retarget

Thanks, Retargeter for the visual! If you are interested, there are whole load of retargeting platforms you can check out, such as: Adroll, Retargeter , Fetchback, and Chango.

Happy creeping (I mean, retargeting), everyone!

 

WHY DOES EMERGING MEDIA MATTER?

Communication is key, they said.  While I have an undergraduate degree in communication studies, you don’t exactly need a degree to understand this concept.  Being an active consumer in today’s society, there is no doubt that you are actively communicating for a solid portion of your day.  Communication does not only entail having friendly conversations with friends and family.  So, lets think about this for a minute… In what ways have you communicated today?  Ok, i’ll go first:

I woke up to my alarm clock (aka cell phone), looked at my phone to see a push notification from Shutterfly (yay, a free 16 x 20 print!), checked my Facebook notifications, checked my email and saw that two of my daughters friends’ RSVP’d to her birthday party, and finally ventured my way out of bed and down stairs, turning on the TV to stream my favorite morning radio talk show via Apple TV.  Next, my daughter told me that she looked at her weather app on her iPad to find that it would be almost 60 degrees today (this calls for a celebration for any Ohioan).  Over the next couple hours, I communicated with people via text, phone call, and Instagram, and also utilized my iMac to look over my school assignments and work on a website that I am currently creating.

So within a the first few hours of my day, I have successfully communicated in about a dozen ways, utilizing a multitude of emerging media outlets– Ah ha, there’s our bread and butter. So what is this emerging media talk about anyway?

Emerging Media 

I am going to assume that we all know what media means and we all know what the word emerging means, so simple, right?  Wrong. Actually, you might not even be aware of it, but the media is changing and evolving every single day and the the way you are being marketed (or marketing) to is also changing every day. But, why?  The reason is relatively simple: Because consumers are spending more time being connected in unlimited number of ways, digital media is becoming mainstream.  It used to be that marketers sent advertising messages to the consumers and that was it, end of story.  Well, with all of this emerging media, consumers are now able to create, send, and share their very own messages! So as a media consumer, it is important for us to become mindful (aware) of emerging media and what it means to consumers, marketers, business owners, etc.

That’s a wrap– for today, anyway. I hope that you can take this journey with me while I pursue my graduate degree in IMC (Integrated Marketing Communication) and learn a few things along the way!