Friday, 6 September 2013

Dipping into Industry Insights

The beginning of each chapter in our book, Managing Interactive Media: Project Management for Web and Digital Media, started with an industry insight relevant for the chapter content. Re-reading them, they are still relevant. Where would you tap in to such insights today? Who are the respected ones? In what areas? I thought that things would have firmed up quite a lot over 5 years, but not so, apparently.

Because the iMedia industry (incorporating e-commerce) is still not recognised as a whole entity for its contribution to GDP – although digital platforms, digital media, digital marketing and social media have become more accepted as part of general business – it is still hard to find people to join the dots across the fragmented whole. After that, it becomes a question of who do you listen to in what area. Take digital/social media production, digital marketing, digital visualisation, digital usability, digital project management, digital law, digital testing and digital team management. Can you name a person or persons that you would choose to listen to in each area?

It was interesting to find that LinkedIn have developed their version of ‘the respected ones’ by choosing their ‘thought leaders’, as part of their initiative called the Influencer Program. Did you know about this? Ross Avner, from a digital gaming background, decries this as betraying the LinkedIn principles where readers themselves are meant to select by choice who to listen to rather than have others make the selection. See a list of LinkedIn thought Leaders at and Ross’s commentary, ’Thought leaders’ take LinkedIn away from its roots (4th September 2013)

Just taking a segment – mobile – the buzz of prediction of where this is going teases out quite a lot of insight sharing. The key is in watching and learning from consumer behaviour. Many involved are using different ways to try and interpret data about behaviour from multi-channel analytics, from reports on behaviour like the joint effort from the Mobile Marketing Association and Vserv. Mobi about mobile behaviour in South East Asia, or from interviews from leaders as in Marketing Week.

What do you think of these snippets from the interviews?
  • Orla Barrett (Styloko) ‘Technology can not only expand your customer base and enable market research, it can also improve the day to day workings of a business...’
  • James Foord (mySupermarket). ‘Convincing internal stakeholders that have not grown up with some of today’s tech is difficult as it involves investment and a leap of faith.’
  • Alison Sagar (Paypal) ‘As retailers think about how consumer behaviour is changing and how they can connect the online information they have about customers with their shopping behaviour in-store, technology – and in particular payment technology – can really help join those dots.’
  • Lorna Westwood (Pandora) ‘From an ecommerce perspective, retailers need to start developing a stronger mobile presence and a user experience with simple, secure payment options to take advantage of the potential of the mobile commerce market.’
  • Peter Wright (IKEA) ‘mobiles are becoming the primary platform from which to access information ...We therefore have to consider mobile commerce in all aspects of activity, ensuring that our ecommerce site is compatible with mobile devices, while also providing unique and inspirational content.’
And, on the question of ‘content’ what about the conjectures of why Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezo bought, a newspaper. Hamish McKenzie, 3rd September 2013, Pandodaily, interprets Jeff’s comments as an endorsement for talented storytelling whether print or digital. Let’s not throw the baby... Core skills are core skills?