Archive for the ‘social media’ Category
What day is it again?
Oh, yes, Wednesday. Hump day.
I’ve been so busy this week on back-to-back phone calls that I’ve hardly had an opportunity to lift my head and see what’s going on in the world.
I finally took a few moments this morning to do so, and discovered a couple of tidbits on the mobile front. One, the new Samsung Galaxy IV is now available, and two, the QWERTY keyboard version of the new BlackBerry, the Q10, is also available.
On the former, it’s a mixed bag according to the Verge, though a mostly positive bag but one that suggests Samsung Galaxy has plenty of “good enough” competition not to warrant the steeper price of entry for the IV.
And on the latter, TechCrunch writes the Q10 is “a QWERTY keyboard smartphone comeback worth waiting for,” which I’ll consider at least a semi-positive endorsement.
Me, I’m sticking with my LG Cosmos 2 feature phone.
Being a social and digital media guru of sorts, people look at me like I’m from another planet when carrying this phone. That alone is a good reason to do so, as it’s a great conversation starter: “What the hell are you doing with that phone??!”
The other is, I like having a phone that works as a phone. I have an HTC Android device, a Kindle, an iPod Touch 5th gen, an iPod Touch 2nd gen, and an iPad 1st gen for all my tablet needs. But for all the time I spend on the phone, good battery life and strong signal reception are key, and the Cosmos 2 continues to deliver day after day without fail.
“Can you hear me now?” are words rarely spoken through the Cosmos.
Speaking of the cosmos, in the social media realm IBM just announced that for the fourth consecutive year that IDC ranked them number one in worldwide market share for enterprise social software.
Fact is, social networking adoption continues to soar as businesses look to transform their organization into a smarter enterprise that is capable of empowering a global workforce and transforming client experiences.
According to IDC, the worldwide enterprise social market segment reached 1.0 billion in 2012, representing growth of 25 percent over 2011.
As this demand grows, organizations are looking to introduce social capabilities into all key areas, from marketing and research innovation to sales and human resources. The challenge is that many lack the ability to capture and share the unique insights from each employee and use it to help drive real value to the business.
IBM’s social business software and services pair powerful social networking capabilities with analytics that help companies engage all key stakeholders whether an employee, customer or partners in order to accelerate innovation and deliver results.
Today, more than 60 percent of Fortune 100 companies have licensed IBM’s solutions for social business, including eight of the top 10 retailers and banks.
IBM’s social networking platform, IBM Connections, allows for instant collaboration with one simple click and the ability to build social communities both inside and outside the organization. We live by it inside IBM these days, and it’s available both on premise and in the IBM SmartCloud for Social Business. IBM currently has three IBM SmartCloud for Social Business facilities based in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.
You can learn more about the latest version of IBM Connections in the video below.
Written by turbotodd
April 24, 2013 at 11:06 am
IBM has taken its social analytics capabilities to the subcontinent.
If you’ve ever visited India, you know that the name of the game there is cricket.
So IBM applied its advanced analytics and natural language processing capabilities recently to try and get underneath the “social sentiment” around that country’s leading cricket stars.
With little question, Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar continues to rule the game of cricket, both on the pitch and on social networks, and is followed by captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and opening batsman Murali Vijay.
This all on the even of the last test match in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar cricket series between India and Australia.
Ravinda Jadeja came out on top as India’s most popular bowler for the match, but nonetheless, it was Tendulkar who consistently lead the social conversation during the period.
A whopping 50 percent of the public sentiment revolved around his batting performance, followed by other that topics that include his past records (which are virtually endless), his stature, and his retirement plans, among others.
The index further revealed that negative sentiment towards Captain Dhoni was high at the beginning of the first match.
However, his on field performance is reflective of how public sentiments changed making Dhoni the most positively referenced player in the series. Another interesting highlight was the emergence of Shikhar Dhawan on the social networks after his debut century — within 5 days, there was 200 percent growth in his online conversations.
For the first time, IBM applied advanced analytics software and natural language processing to cricket to build a social score board for the Indian Players based on the intensity of the sentiment and volume of online conversations.
Over 1.2 lakh posts (~ 120,000) on a variety of platforms including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and the blogging community were analysed during the first three matches in the current series.
Speaking about IBM’s Social Sentiment Index, Virginia Sharma, Vice President, Marketing & Communication, IBM India/South Asia, said of the effort:
“IBM is changing the game — both in business and in sports. By applying the social sentiment lens to cricket that has a multi-screen experience, we demonstrated how analytics can provide real time exciting insights into public preferences. This can be leveraged by organizations across the media, entertainment and sports industries to better understand their audience, determine endorsement values, and deliver effective marketing campaigns for their businesses”.
About the IBM Social Sentiment Index
The IBM Social Sentiment Index uses advanced analytics and natural language processing technologies to analyze large volumes of social media data in order to assess public opinions.
The Index can identify and measure positive, negative and neutral sentiments shared in public forums such as Twitter, blogs, message boards and other social media, and provide quick insights into consumer conversations about issues, products and services.
Representing a new form of market research, social sentiment analyses offer organizations new insights into Big Data that can help them better understand and respond to consumer trends.
Go here for more information about IBM Social Analytics technology.
In September of last year, I blogged about the IBM 2012 Global Reputational Risk and IT Study, which I explained was an “investigation of how organizations around the world are managing their reputations in today’s digital era, where IT is an integral part of their operations and where IT failures can result in reputational damage.”
I also wrote “corporate reputations are especially difficult to manage in an era when anyone with a smartphone and Internet connection can file their complaint with a single touch.”
That continues to be the case, but what’s new is that IBM has recently issued another report on further implications of this study and its findings, and more importantly, what organizations can do to get on offense when it comes to better managing their corporate reputation.
The Connection Between Reputational Risk And IT
When the corporate world first began paying attention to the concept of reputational risk in 2005, organizations’ focus tended to be on business issues like compliance and financial misdoings.
Today, the focus has shifted to include the reputational impact of IT risks. Virtually every company is now reliant on technology for its critical business processes and interactions. While it may take 10 minutes or 10 hours to recover from an IT failure, the reputational impact can be felt for months or even years.
Reputational damage caused by IT failures such as data breaches, systems failures and data loss now has a price tag. According to analyses performed by the Ponemon Institute, the economic value of a company’s reputation declines an average of 21 percent as a result of an IT breach of customer data — or the equivalent of an average of US $332 million.
The question now is not whether IT risks affect your corporate reputation, but what you can do to effectively prevent and mitigate these risks.
Six Keys To Effective Reputational And IT Risk Management
An analysis of responses to the IBM study revealed distinct correlations between the initiatives that organizations are undertaking to protect their reputations from the ramifications of IT failures and the overall effectiveness of their reputational and IT risk management efforts.
Based on this analysis, and the pattern it revealed among organizations that are most confident in their ability to prevent and mitigate IT-related reputational risk, there are six key initiatives that IBM recommends as part of every company’s efforts:
- Put someone in charge. Ultimate responsibility for reputational risk, including IT-related items, should rest with one person.
- Make the compliance and reputation connection. Measuring reputational and IT risk management strategies against compliance requirements is essential.
- Reevaluate the impact of social media. In addition to recognizing its potential for negative reputational impact, social media should be leveraged for its positive attributes.
- Keep an eye on your supply chain. Organizations must require and verify adherence of third-party suppliers to corporate standards.
- Avoid complacency. Organizations should continually evaluate reputational and IT risk management against strategy to find and eliminate potential gaps.
- Fund remediation; invest in prevention. For optimal reputational risk mitigation, companies need to fund critical IT systems as part of their core business
How IBM Can Help
When planned and implemented effectively, your organization’s reputational and IT risk strategy can become a vital competitive advantage. When you protect against and mitigate reputational risks successfully, you can enhance brand value in the eyes of customers, partners and analysts. Further, your organization can better attract new customers, retain existing customers and generate greater revenue.
IBM can help you protect your reputation with a robust portfolio of IT security, business continuity and resiliency, and technical support solutions. You can start with an IT security risk assessment, or penetration testing performed by IBM experts.
For business continuity and resiliency, you can begin with a Continuous Operations Risk Evaluation (CORE) Workshop and move on to cloud-based resiliency services. Our technical support solutions range from basic software support to custom technical support.
What makes IBM solutions work is global reach with a local touch. This includes:
- Over 160 business resiliency centers in 70 countries; more than 50 years of experience
- More than 9,000 disaster recovery clients, with IBM providing 100 percent recovery for clients who have declared a disaster
- A global network of 33 security operations, research and solution development centers; 133 monitored countries
- 15,000 researchers, developers and subject matter experts working security initiatives worldwide.
To learn more about the IBM Global Reputational Risk and IT Study go here.
Written by turbotodd
March 19, 2013 at 8:16 pm
This week the retail gurus of the world have been hobnobbing at the Jacob Javitts center in New York City as part of the National Retail Federation’s annual gathering.
So I thought it an appropriate opportunity to highlight a retail partnership between IBM and Signet Jewelers Ltd., the largest specialty retail jeweler in the U.S. and U.K..
IBM and Signet have worked together on a major e-commerce strategy and digital marketing redesign for Signet’s national U.S. store chains, Kay Jewelers and Jared the Galleria of Jewelry.
Building A Multichannel Strategy
The initiative has transformed the multichannel experience for Kay and Jared customers and resulted in consistent sales growth, including a year-over-year increase of 49 percent in online sales as reported in the company’s recently announced holiday sales for fiscal 2013.
To advance its existing multichannel retail strategy and supplement its e-commerce and information technology expertise, Signet Jewelers U.S. Division engaged consultants from IBM Global Business Services and its digital consulting and design practice, IBM Interactive.
IBM and Signet U.S. collaborated to develop a unified strategy for delivering a more consistent, branded and personalized customer experience to Kay and Jared customers everywhere they shop — whether in a physical store, online or via mobile.
Key components of the multi-phased strategy include the launch of new transactional mobile sites, which enable customers to shop and purchase Kay and Jared products from their mobile phones, and a redesign of the Kay.com and Jared.com websites, which went live before the busy holiday shopping season.
The new sites combine best practices in optimized navigation and functionality, making it easier for shoppers to find, compare and purchase products online, along with new custom features that deliver a more guided, personalized shopping experience for which the company is known.
For instance, shoppers can now chat live with a customer service representative, compare product details side-by-side to help determine their selection, track recently viewed items and much more.
Mi amigo Paul Papas, IBM’s Smarter Commerce Global Leader for Global Business Services, had this to say about the partnership:
“Much of Signet Jeweler’s success in building Kay and Jared into two of the most trusted retail brands can be attributed to the expertise and superior customer service they deliver to create a world-class shopping experience. In an industry known for being married to tradition, Signet Jewelers is a shining example of how bricks and mortar retailers are redefining the customer experience and embracing digital channels, like mobile and social, as part of their overall strategy to deliver personalized interactions to their customers at every touch point.”
Behind the Redesign
Initially starting with tactical enhancements to the Kay.com and Jared.com websites in late 2011, Signet U.S. launched complete redesigns of both sites in October 2012.
Signet introduced new mobile sites for each brand with transactional capabilities in mid-November.
The company has also launched a mobile app available on iTunes and the Android Market and introduced catalogs on the Google Catalogs app to tap into the growing population of mobile shoppers.
To elevate Signet’s social media presence, the company worked with IBM to define an engagement strategy, which Signet U.S. has begun implementing by launching a social media presence for Kay and Jared.
Each brand platform is focused on engaging consumers in the spaces that are most relevant to them, like Facebook and Twitter, to develop and sustain relationships, build loyalty and foster brand advocates who shop both in-store and online.
To help define Signet’s e-commerce strategy and roadmap, IBM executed research that included a customer segmentation analysis, voice of the customer surveys and in-store observations.
With deeper insights into customer needs and distinct shopping scenarios, as well as the capabilities required to support them online, Signet U.S. was able to deploy an integrated solution that extends the Kay and Jared in-store shopping experience to the web and mobile platforms.
About Signet Jewelers Ltd
Signet Jewelers is the largest specialty retail jeweler in the US and UK. Signet’s US division operates more than 1,325 stores in all 50 states primarily under the name brands of Kay Jewelers and Jared The Galleria Of Jewelry. Signet’s UK division operates more than 500 stores primarily under the name brands of H.Samuel and Ernest Jones.
This blog post is coming hot off the Mac simple word processing app, WriteRoom, NOT my recently rediscovered Royal manual typewriter.
I decided this blog post would just have to go down burning some carbon.
I wanted to continue my theme of “getting s— done” by writing a little bit about my own approach to putting David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” methodology into actual practice, both by elaborating a little about my own approach and mentioning the tools I use.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve been a faithful subscriber to the cloud-based taskmaster, “Remember the Milk.”
Though I can absolutely recommend RTM, I’m making some changes for 2013, and have done a little migrating.
My primary replacement tool(s) are a combination of the following:
3) Thinking Rock
Allow me to explain.
Nothing beats tying (most) everything back to the cloud, and Gmail’s calendar feature is as good as they come for “remembering” specific tasks (via their “Reminder” function, tied to the Google calendar).
But in the spirit of exploration, I moved from RTM to Todoist (purchasing a year-long subscription for about $30 U.S.) because I liked the simple project structure and user interface (and, the fact that they support just about every computing and mobile device I have!).
And, because I can tie it to my Gmail inbox and calendar, I get daily emails reminding me of what my latest “to do’s” are.
But, with all that said, I still didn’t feel Todoist had the GTD structure I was looking for, especially when it came to breaking down individual projects/tasks.
So, I’ve revived my use of “Thinking Rock,” software from an Australian software provider, as it provides a much more structured interface and database for GTD management, IMHO.
Though I’ve not yet paid for the “full” version ($39 for a license that covers all future upgrades and support), I suspect it’s only a matter of time.
You can see a screenshot from my current “project” list in the embedded graphic above.
I like ThinkingRock’s literal embrace of the GTD approach, and find that when it comes time to really spending time to sit and break down tasks for a project or future actions, it provides the kind of easy-to-input-and-use interface I was looking for.
You can read some of the reviews here, so apparently I’m not the only one of this opinion.
So how do I make them all work together?
It’s actually pretty simple. Whenever I have a new project or action, I use the “Collect Thoughts” feature in Thinking Rock to start the input.
Then, in the project view, as I start to determine specific actions, when I have one with a specific date attached, I input that into Todoist (a minor bit of duplication that I don’t mind), which is then tied to a specific date.
That way, whenever the due date is up, I’m reminded on either that day, or, if I planned ahead giving myself a buffer, in advance of the final due date.
I generally know which actions need to have reminders on the actual due date versus those that have need for a buffer, and this way, I get automated emails from Todoist each and every morning listing the outstanding “to do’s.”
I also sometimes use Google Calendar to have reminders sent for very specific time-gated concerns (doctor’s appointments, concerts, lunch with friends, etc.).
Mind you, this combination is a recent phenomenon, but so far, it’s working well for me. So long as I keep up my daily and weekly reviews (which are instrumental to a successful GTD strategy), I have a feeling I could be well on my way to a very productive 2013!
I mentioned in a post recently that I was to speak at the annual WOMMA Summit (WOMMA standing for “Word Of Mouth Marketing Association”) about IBM’s efforts to better organize itself to take advantage of the social business opportunity.
After lumbering through the SlideShare “slidecast” capability and learning my way around (and no, it really wasn’t that difficult — I’m just a slow learner), I was able to create a slidecast of the presentation I gave in Las Vegas for those of you who may be interested.
As I noted in that blog post leading up to my talk, the general theme of my session there centered on the challenges and opportunities larger organizations face as they go about building their social strategies, and sharing particular insights and experiences we’ve had inside IBM on this front.
At IBM, our social business strategy has very much centered around one of our best market-facing emissaries, the IBMer! If you’ve kept pace with any of our marketing initiatives in recent times, you know that the IBMer is front and center in those communications, most notably in our TV advertising, but also extensively in the digital and social media as well.
But their participation doesn’t end there.
We’ve featured subject matter experts extensively across a wide range of topics and across a range of venues in the digital and social media space, as well as in other public and sometimes private venues (think conferences, events, customer meetings, etc.).
This direction is very much in keeping with IBM’s high-touch sales heritage, but builds on that legacy by making our people more accessible via social venues as well.
So, please, take some time out of your busy day if you’re interested in learning more about IBM’s social business efforts, and hopefully you’ll walk away with some of the actionable insights we’ve garnered that can help you and your organization in your own social business journey.
Just click on the arrow to play, kick back, and relax!
Written by turbotodd
December 10, 2012 at 11:14 pm
Okay boys and girls, it’s that time of year.
No, not the time for Saint Nicholas to come shooting down your chimneys to deliver lots of tablets and smartphones for Christmas.
That time will come soon enough.
No, I’m referring to the results from IBM’s third annual Tech Trends Report, where we talk to an extended sample of technology decision makers to find out what’s on their minds.
In 2010, I explained from the results that it was all about mobile and the cloud.
Last year, the headlines centered on IBM’s Watson technology and business analytics.
This year…while we wait for the drum roll, let me first tell provide you with some background about this year’s study.
About the 2012 IBM Tech Trends Report Study
The 2012 Tech Trends Report is based on a survey of more than 1,200 professionals who make technology decisions for their organizations (22 percent IT managers, 53 percent IT practitioners, and 25 percent business professionals), and who come from 16 different industries and 13 countries (which span both mature and growth markets).
IBM also surveyed more than 250 academics and 450 students across those same countries in order to better understand how tech trends are impacting future IT professionals.
The Headlines This Year: What’s Old Is New, And What’s New Is An Emerging Skills Gap
According to this year’s survey, what’s old is new. Mobile technology, business analytics, cloud computing, and social business continue to be emergent key themes. What’s new is this: Though new and exciting business possibilities are emerging from these new capabilities, significant IT skills shortages, combined with lingering security concerns, are threatening adoption and business progress.
By way of example, the survey revealed that only one in ten organizations has all the skills it needs, and within each of the four areas previously mentioned, roughly one-quarter of respondents report major skills gaps, and 60 percent or more report moderate to major shortfalls.
The skills shortage is more acute in mature markets, with roughly two-thirds of respondents indicating moderate to major shortages versus roughly half in growth markets.
With respect to security concerns, they consistently rank as the most significant barrier to adoption across mobile, cloud computing and social business.
The report observes that IT security is not just a technology concern, however. It’s a broad business issue with far-reaching policy and process implications, and notes that moving into mobile means organizations must address the increased risk of data loss and security breach, device management challenges, and complications introduced by the growing trend toward “bring-your-own-device” (BYOD).
In cloud computing, it calls for policies on employee use of public cloud services, segregation of data within shared or hybrid cloud solutions, and ensuring the right data is in the right place subject to the right controls.
In social business, organizations need to consider customer privacy expectations, regulatory compliance, and employee guidelines on confidentiality, acceptable use, and protecting the corporate brand.
Pay Attention To The Pacesetters
So with all this in mind, which organizations are better positioned to create competitive advantage? Early adopters or late arrivers? Those focused on strategic impact or tactical implementations?
The data suggest it’s those companies forging ahead faster (in spite of adoption hurdles) and using mobile, analytics, cloud, and social technologies in more strategic ways.
The so-called “pacesetters” believe emerging technologies are critical to their business success and are using them to enable new operating/business models.
They’re also adoption ahead of their competition.
What sets them apart from the “followers” and “dabblers” are three key factors: They’re more market driven, they’re more analytical, and they’re more willing to experiment.
And where they say they’re headed next also provides a learning opportunity.
More than 75 percent of pacesetters are increasing investments in mobile and cloud computing over the next two years, and they’re betting heavily on business analytics and social business (two to three times as many pacesetters are raising those investments by 10 percent or more).
With respect to skills, 70 percent of pacesetters are building capabilities in mobile integration, security, privacy, and mobile application architecture, design and development.
Twenty-eight percent have already developed business analytics expertise in probability, statistics and mathematical modeling (and another 60 percent are eagerly developing those capabilities).
In cloud computing, more than 70 percent are developing skills in cloud security, administration, and architecture.
And nearly one-quarter of them have already built the expertise needed to extend social business solutions to mobile and to perform social analytics.
Their intent to combined technologies — mobile and social, social and analytics, etc. — are helping drive even greater business value for their organizations.
The 2012 IBM Tech Trends Upshot?
CEOs understand the external factors impacting their organizations most: Technology and skills.
But one without the other is a recipe for innovative decline, and to effectively address these interconnected imperatives, business and IT executives need new approaches for bridging skills gaps and helping their organizations capitalize on the strategic potential of emerging technologies.
The figure to the right demonstrates specific actions that can help you as a leader move your organization into a pacesetting position. And IBM is also stepping up and offering some new skills-building initiatives as well.
Bridging The Skills Gap
On the heels of this study, IBM has announced an array of programs and resources to help students and IT professionals develop new technology skills and prepare for jobs of the future.
The initiatives include new training courses and resources for IT professionals, technology and curriculum materials for educators and expanded programs to directly engage students with real-world business challenges. You can learn more about those here.
You read in my last post about last Monday’s “Cyber Monday” tidings according to the IBM Digital Benchmark.
Well, TechCrunch is reporting from comScore data that the holiday shopping juggernaut continues well beyond Cyber Monday.
comScore’s data found that e-commerce spending for the first 30 days of this November-December 2012 holiday season has amounted to a respectable $20.4 billion, a 15 percent increase over the same time period last year.
During the past week alone, comScore reported three individual days surpassing $1 billion in spending, according to the TechCrunch post by Leena Rao, with the peak, of course, coming on Cyber Monday at $1.46 billion.
Of course, all that might seem like chump change when you hold it up against some e-commerce numbers coming out of China, via a post on VentureBeat.
China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba alone has sold an estimated $157 billion U.S. in gross merchandise volume this year, which VentureBeat observes surpasses Amazon and eBay combined.
In fact, Alibaba is believed to have garnered a $3 billion single sales day earlier this year.
But the real story here may be Jack Ma’s “Alipay,” Alibaba’s payments processing unit, which now has over 700 million registered users.
According to a recent report from the folks at eMarketer, China’s antiquated banking system and low usage by consumers of credit cards is benefiting the e-commerce industry there.
Alipay, now China’s largest third-party online payment solution, essentially provides escrow payment services that not only facilitate e-commerce transactions in China, but also reduces risk to consumers, because with Alipay, they have the ability to verify whether or not they are satisfied with their purchases before releasing funds to the seller.
And Alipay isn’t just limited to the Chinese marketplace. It now handles transactions in 12 foreign currencies, including in U.S. dollars, Japanese yen, and the euro.
According to the eMarketer report, Alibaba is also upgrading its COD payment infrastructure, investing some $79 million U.S. in a portable device that Alibaba says will consolidate logistics records with credit/debit card payment information in a single terminal.
It’s Alipay’s intent to install thousands such devices across China’s first- and second-tier cities (think Beijing, Shanghai, etc.) by the end of this year, which will help with China’s broader goals of fomenting increased internal consumer consumption.
Of course, if you’re News Corporation, and you’re in the iPad publishing business, no amount of Chinese e-commerce facilitatin’ payment devices are going to help a fledgling business model.
Earlier today, News Corp. finally bifurcated its publishing and entertainment businesses, and seemingly as a minor sidebar, also conceded defeat of its The Daily iPad app effective December 15.
The Daily had been News Corp’s digital pride and joy, a valiant attempt at delivering a daily news publication via the iPad only 100,000 people wanted.
At 99 cents a week, that apparently was not revenue enough even close to maintaining a viable business, so The Daily will now be put to bed.
Ever-reliable media critic website Poynter noted The Daily had two key lessons of failure from which we could all learn. One, they had no clarity on its intended audience (I thought that was supposed to be iPad users!), and two, one platform, the iPad, just wasn’t enough in a multi-device world.
Perhaps they should have instigated a Chinese edition? Surely they could have drummed up a few more hundred thousand from a population of 1.3 billion!
Greetings. I’m back from celebrating my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary on the high seas of the Gulf of Mexico.
Alas, due to my shipbound nature, I wasn’t able to participate in the annual cyber holiday shopping extravaganza. Internet access on the high seas is both expensive and slow, and hey, this was a semi vacation for me, so being online would have been too much like work.
I did make some local economic contributions in port, in both Progreso and Cozumel, by shopping with the local vendors and in the duty free shops, so I can come out of the initial holiday shopping festivities without much guilt.
But if you missed the press coverage earlier in the week, I did want to share results from the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark, part of IBM’s Smarter Commerce initiative and an excellent view into the behaviors and trends of holiday cyber shoppers.
The headline, of course, was the size of the market, with holiday shoppers turning the 2012 “Cyber Monday” into the biggest spending day ever, with growth coming in at 30.3 percent over the same period last year.
With an increase in online sales across multiple channels, the digital consumer took center stage.
Retailers, marketing departments and chief marketing officers (CMO) delivered a consistent customer experience across multiple channels from mobile devices, to online and to the show floor leading to the record shopping day.
Some of the other trends that were revealed:
- Shopping Peaks at 11:25am EST: Consumers flocked online, with shopping momentum hitting its highest peak at 11:25am EST. As in 2011, consumer shopping also maintained strong momentum after commuting hours on both the east and west coast.
- Mobile Shopping and Mobile Traffic Increase: On Cyber Monday more than 18 percent of consumers used a mobile device to visit a retailer’s site, an increase of more than 70 percent over 2011. Mobile sales reached close to 13 percent, an increase of more than 96 percent over 2011.
- The iPad Factor: The iPad continued to generate more traffic than any other tablet or smartphone, driving more than 7 percent of online shopping. This was followed by iPhone at 6.9 percent and Android 4.5 percent. The iPad also continued to dominate tablet traffic reaching a holiday high of 90.5 percent. Amazon Kindle leapt into second at 2.6 percent followed by the Samsung Galaxy at 2 percent and the Barnes and Noble Nook at 0.6 percent.
- Multiscreen Shopping: Consumers shopped in store, online and on mobile devices simultaneously to get the best bargains. Overall 58.1 percent of consumers used smartphones compared to 41.9 percent who used tablets to surf for bargains on Cyber Monday.
- The Savvy Shopper: While consumers continued to spend more, they once again shopped with greater frequency to take advantage of retailer deals as well as free shipping. This led to a drop in average order value by 6.6 percent to $185.12. However, the average number of items per order increased 14.1 percent to 8.34 compared to Black Friday.
- Social Sales: Shoppers referred from Social Networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube generated 0.41 percent of all online sales on Cyber Monday, a decrease of more than 26 percent from 2011.
Here’s what my colleage Jay Henderson, strategy director for IBM’s Smarter Commerce initiative, had to say about this year’s Cyber Monday:
“Cyber Monday was not only the pinnacle of the Thanksgiving shopping weekend but when the cash register closed it officially became the biggest online shopping day ever. Retailers that adopted a smarter marketing approach to commerce were able to adjust to the shifting shopping habits of their customers, whether in-store, online or via their mobile device of choice, and fully benefit from this day and the entire holiday weekend.”
Cyber Monday sales growth was led by several industries which include:
- Department stores continued to offer compelling deals and promotions that drove sales to grow by 43.1 percent over Cyber Monday 2011.
- Health and Beauty sales increased 25.1 percent year over year with consumers once again choosing to pamper themselves this holiday.
- Home goods maintained its momentum this year, reporting a 26.8 percent increase in sales from Cyber Monday 2011.
- Apparel sales were also strong this holiday with Cyber Monday numbers showing an increase of 25.3 percent over 2011.
These trends were based on findings from the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark, the industry’s only cloud-based Web analytics platform that tracks more than a million e-commerce transactions a day, analyzing terabytes of raw data from 500 retailers nationwide.
Analysis of public social media content came from the IBM Social Sentiment Index, an advanced analytics and natural language processing tool that analyzes large volumes of social media data to assess public opinions.
With this data IBM helps chief marketing officers (CMOs) better understand and respond to the needs of each individual customer, improving sourcing, inventory management, marketing, sales and services programs.
So What Does It All Mean?
First of all, e-commerce is alive and well, with the 30+ percent increase in online sales suggesting more people than ever are not only comfortable with e-commerce, they’re confident in the economy and willing to open up their pocketbooks, even as they aggressively looked for deals online and off.
The mobile juggernaut continues, with Apple enjoying the most notable e-shopping platform in the form of the iPad, but retailers have to continue to strive for synergy between the online and brick-and-mortar experience, as customers are still coming into stores, but only once they’ve first done research via their PCs or mobile devices. We are definitely in an age of the Informed Consumer.
Though the social referrals number may seem somewhat low, and despite the decrease in social referrals year over year, Facebook and other platforms continue to play a vital and instrumental role in providing word-of-mouth recommendations about products and services. Retailers ignore those social presences at their peril.
Apparel shopping online has moved increasingly into the mainstream, with more customers than ever comfortable with the idea of buying clothing and other apparel accessories “sight unseen.”
And finally, and probably most importantly for retailers trying to understand consumer behavior in the grander scheme of things — and as the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark itself observes — there’s a lot to be learned in the aggregate analysis of all these transactions.
Big data is here, and it looks as though it’s here to stay, particularly in the retail industry.
Whether it’s trying to better understanding “day parts” (the time of day people were most active shopping online), or the device footprint (Have you created an enhanced experience for all those millions of iPad shoppers??), sifting through and analyzing all this cyber shopping data presents both challenge and opportunity, and those retail clients who synthesize, then optimize, their online shopping experiences based on these changing behaviors will be the ultimate holiday shopping season victors.
Written by turbotodd
November 30, 2012 at 8:09 pm
Myself, along with a lot of other Austinites, learned quite a bit about Formula 1 racing over the weekend.
Though I didn’t get out to the track myself, I watched the entire race on TV.
Of course, I also did a bit of research leading into the race, and also interacted with some experts via social media during the race, which made the experience all the more helpful.
My general impressions are wow, those are some bad *** cars! What really struck me about F1 was the “Formula,” where the tinkering with the cars is limited mainly to that, so the focus is instead on strategy and tactics by the “constructor” crews and the drivers themselves.
One tank of gas, two sets of tires, the track (in this case, the “Circuit of the Americas”), and your pit strategy.
That seems to me to equalize the competition in a way you don’t see in every sport, making the viewing experience that much more compelling.
Lewis Hamilton from the U.K. took the top of the podium, forcing Sebastian Vettel to wait until the 20th and final race of the season to determine whether or not he’ll go “back to back to back” and win three straight F1 championships.
As for Austin’s ability to host an event of this size, so far, the reviews are pretty flattering. We were expecting over 200,000 people over the long weekend, and despite the expected traffic challenges, the event went off quite smoothly.
The virgin track certainly had some gripping challenges, but that actually made for a more scintillating race, and certainly didn’t keep the drivers from doing some aggressive passing. And the weather was simply perfect.
To my mind, it really starts to cement Austin’s reputation as an “international” city, and I’m looking forward to our hosting future races.
As for me personally, it’s official: I’m a converted F1 fan, and will be making it even more official by adding a new section to MyESPN home page!