Microsoft Cloud Blogathon – India’s first Blogging Based Competition

New age technologies like Internet, Social media, Mobile, Cloud & others have given companies better ways of connecting with their audience. Companies are investing more & more into digital marketing arena to connect with their customer base. Brands are using Social media platforms like Facebook, twitter, vine, instagram & others for their marketing activities.

Microsoft India has come up with an innovative campaign called as “Microsoft Cloud Blogathon“. This is a 30 day competition, 20th May, 2013 to 00:00 hrs on 21st June, 2013 & is targeted towards college students. As part of this, one questions will be provided every day & students are required to contribute. There are daily prizes to be won & 50 top qualifiers based on the selection process will win 4 week Virtual mentor ship opportunities with Microsoft India. This is India’s first blogging based competition & this provides students, once in a life time opportunity to be mentored at Microsoft India. More info about the Microsoft Cloud Blogathon can be had at their FAQ section.

Cloud computing technology has become a boon providing easy access to the required information 24*7. This helps students & faculty access documents, mails, engage in video conferencing & IM anywhere & anytime. This helps in easier collaboration & communication increasing productivity & innovation.

Social Media Analytics

Social media sites like twitter, facebook, youtube & others are now sending large chunks of traffic to the sites. With this, the social media analytics has evolved. Various free & premium social media analytic tools have been providing analysis about the brands & services. Twitter will soon be launching analytics which helps know about the tweets. Facebook insights also provides significant amount of information about the facebook pages. Wikipedia is one of the top social media referrers for many sites. Trends in twitter help know about the type of conversation going on about the product or service. Free tools provide a wealth of information which can be used for search engine optimization & other web related improvements.

Web Analytics for Measuring Video Stats

With the rapid rise of youtube & other video sharing sites, videos have become a novel way of promoting products, services & info. Some of the videos have millions of views & thousands of comments. Also google is showing videos for many keyword searches. Web analytics for video stats would help get important info about the videos. Some of the top parameters to look for in video analytics include: 1) No. of comments 2) No. of views 3) Keywords for which video is appearing 4) Rating for the video 5) How long the video is viewed 6) how fast the video loads particularly in places with slow connection 7) No.of times video is downloaded. Videos should be optimized properly with great titles as it helps rank in search engines.

Apple’s Four Pillars – Mac, iPod, iPhone & iPad

Apple’s iPad & iPhone have given a new tool for marketers to reach a new segment of customers. Companies have released both free & paid apps for the se devices. Billions of downloads have taken place & the app store has become a new revenue source. Together iMac, iPod, iPhone & iPad form the four pillars of Apple. iPad has created a new market with many companies vying for a tablet spot. For the digital marketing, companies can create new apps tailor made for promotions, new product releases & others. Apple has been announcing many improvements in these products. It is very rare that a product by a company provides a new marketing opportunities for others. Mobile advertising targeted at iPhone users is also rising & iphone revolutionized the smart phone industry.

BP’s Brand Disaster

BP’s Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill has damaged the BP brand Value. This is evident by BP off the list in Interbrand’s 2010 list. Blogs, twitter & other PR machines were against the way BP handled the crisis. @BPglobalPR, a satirical BP twitter account got more followers than the BP twitter account. BP, a brand built over the decades, should have done a better of way of protecting the brand. With the rise of social media, it is clear that companies can no longer control their brand. It is not just BP, even Nestle, Toyota & other top brands face similar wrath of the social media. The logic lies in accepting the facts & then doing the damage control. Social Media is a vast space & even if a single negative story spreads, it has the potential to ignite a wildfire.
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Apple iPhone, Google Android & Blackberry App World Mobile Apps

Apple iphone apps changed the way smart phones are used. Thousands of apps are available for iphone & this has resulted in various ways iPhone can be used. Billions of downloads have been done. Success of this led to Google’s Android store & Blackberry’s App world. But these 2 haven’t been able to match the success of Apple iphone apps. Apps provided a new medium for marketers to reach the customers. Several free informational, product based, service based & paid apps have been introduced to reach the customers. This also helped a new way of branding. Apps are also being released for promotions with links to Twitter & Facebook. Success of an app depends on the number of downloads & also the viral/word of mouth about the app.
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Starbucks & Social Media

Starbucks has embraced the digital marketing & social media into its overall marketing strategy. Starbucks has a website where users can submit ideas & can be voted by others. It has also included sponsored tweets in Twitter to promote free goodies for tax day. It has also promoted deals in foursquare. Starbucks facebook promotions have also helped it increase the brand awareness. Blogs on the website helped provide a communication with the customers. Starbucks social media promotions have helped it develop good rapport with its big customer base.