While online advertising is booming, it’s still not on par with time investment by people per medium. Print is hugely overpriced, representing 8% of people’s time and 27% of ad spending. Contrast that to mobile: 8% of time spent and 0.5% of ad spending.
Content creation has become a commodity. Newspaper continues to decline while we experience the golden age of content aggregation.
E-commerce now represents 8% of all retail commerce and will grow dramatically. Retailers beware: The #1 reason for customers to abandon the in-store purchase is because they found cheaper options online. #2 reason: They found a cheaper price at a different store.
We might muddle our way through it. Or the economy collapses. Nobody knows. This uncertainty is the biggest challenge for politicians, economist and people. Uncertainty might be the new normal.
More people have access to the wireless grid (85%) than electricity. Over 200 million farmers in India receive payments via mobile devices and they have become instrumental during disasters.
While we talk in our echo chamber all day long about Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google (and they remain global mega-leaders) Internet giants from China and Russia (Baidu, Tencent and Yandex) are catching up quickly.
Here’s an eye-opener: 81% of users of the top global Internet Properties are outside the U.S.
A big challenge for all of us: How will identify and authenticate the almost billion Facebook customers with the 1.4 billion mobile customers by 2012?
The economy is down but U.S. mobile innovation is still the global leader: Made in the US-smartphone operating systems – Android, iOS and Windows Mobile – have increases market share from 5% in 2005 to 65% today.
Mobile subscriber growth is more explosive than the initial Internet adoption, leaving TV adoption in the dust. Smartphone shipments have surpassed feature phone shipments.
Usability matters and it will become even more important over time to deliver complex services to people through a simple interface. The next revolution? Between your ears. Voice recognition, sound creation and sharing, and audio interfaces.
When people were consumers, brands lived in this exclusive universe of commerce and communication meant to sell products through emotions with one end goal: make money. Lots of it.
People are not consumers anymore. This is particularly true when people are online. We have transformed into citizen activists, journalists, lawless pirates, producers, protagonist and, more often than not, curmudgeons. People want much more from a brand than just a good offer, relieving them from the tyranny of too many choices or some fancy lines and images.
People will vote with their wallet for things they believe in rather than just buying stuff. Marketing constructs such as brand image are meaningless in a world where people expect brands to “do” rather than show, sell, spin stories nobody believes in anymore.
Successful brands will become social movements, fully committed to a cause. They will connect with people by either sharing a passion or fighting a common enemy. Brands have to come down from their Ivory Tower of branding and stand shoulder to shoulder with people sharing their passion, and helping each other to co-create and collaborate. A brand that shares my passion and is committed to a cause (We’re talking real dollars here…) will be seen as credible, committed and a real change agent.
Ultimately, we have to redefine the nature of commerce. Profits will continue to be important. Brands that define themselves solely through Wall Street results will not survive. The pursuit of a higher good than just selling stuff will become the admission fee into people’s mind.
We used to look at government programs to better the world, improve our surroundings. The stranglehold of debt will severely reduce opportunities for government institutions to be a change agent. Brands need to step up and become a cultural change agent. They have the monetary power, they have a better organizational structure than any government institution and they understand the power of democracy better than anybody else: Their constituents vote with their wallet not because of some ideology, family history or flawed loyalty.
There’s nothing wrong with making money. But making meaning is so much more powerful.