Archive for September 2011
Close your eyes, and cast your mind back to the first dotcom boom in the late 90s/early 00s. What’s your overriding memory of that whole crazy period? Or if you’re too young to really remember, what do you immediately think of when you hear dotcom bubble or dotcom boom mentioned in relation to Silicon Valley at the turn of the millennium?
I’m going to take a stab and guess that it has something to do with over-inflated valuations of ill-conceived, kooky ideas. Okay, that may be wide of the mark for some of the companies that are still plying their trade today, such as Amazon, eBay and Google. And of the many ideas that didn’t work out, not all of them were inherently bad, they were simply ahead of their time.
We’ve discussed this subject before, looking at why the original dotcom boom of a decade ago isn’t the same as today, and why we won’t see the same widespread collapse of the digital industry. In the intermittent years between the two dotcom booms, technologies, attitudes, skill levels…everything, has caught up. So even if companies such as Groupon were to fall flat on their faces tomorrow, the bubble would probably still remain intact, simply because the Internet ecosystem is far more robust – companies rise and fall as they have always done, but e-commerce is here to stay.
One of the reasons why so many companies failed before was that there was a broad lack of understanding about monetizing the Web.
People on Facebook
- More than 800 million active users
- More than 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day
- Average user has 130 friends
Activity on Facebook
- There are over 900 million objects that people interact with (pages, groups, events and community pages)
- Average user is connected to 80 community pages, groups and events
- More than 2 billion posts are liked and commented on per day
- On average, more than 250 million photos are uploaded per day
- More than 70 languages available on the site
- More than 75% of users are outside of the United States
- Over 300,000 users helped translate the site through the translations application
- On average, people on Facebook install apps more than 20 million times every day
- Every month, more than 500 million people use an app on Facebook or experience Facebook Platform on other websites
- More than 7 million apps and websites are integrated with Facebook
- There are more than 350 million active users currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices
- There are more than 475 mobile operators globally working to deploy and promote Facebook mobile products
via Statistics (6).
Taken from Mobile Commerce Daily on September 21, 2011
Disney is continuing its plunge into mobile with a commerce-enabled iPad app that lets consumers buy products on the go.
The app resembles the company’s Web site with a similar design and functions. The Disney Store app is the company’s latest effort to beef up its mobile strategy, which also includes an mobile-optimized Web site, mobile partnerships and SMS programs.
“The importance of an app for a retailer is dependent on several things,” said Marci Troutman, CEO of Siteminis, Atlanta.
“At the very least, a mobile app presence is critical for any retailer to market to the largest reach of consumers,” she said.
Ms. Troutman is not affiliated with Disney. She commented based on her expertise on the subject.
Disney did not respond to press inquiries.
The app marries commerce and mobile to let consumers shop via their handsets.
Disney fans can shop by category, price and product name.
Shoppers can browse price, category or popularity
Consumers can add items to their carts and buy products after creating a Disney account.
To speed up the shopping time, credit cards can be saved to a user’s account.
Consumers can also find nearby Disney stores and view their account history.
Design-wise, the app mimics Disney Store’s Web site with a carousel at the top that showcases new products and offers.
Consumers can buy items directly through the app
“With an app, additional features to enhance the site can be added for a more interactive experience, but for shopping there isn’t a need to change the site on this form factor,” Ms. Troutman said.
For example, the app is currently running a promotion for free shipping on Halloween costume orders.
Once placing an order, consumers can track packages through their account.
The app also lists other Web-based information for shoppers, including helpful phone numbers, shipping information, sizing charts and access to Disney’s loyalty program – the Disney Redemption Card.
Wish on mobile
Disney’s launch of the commerce-enabled app is far from the company’s first attempt at mobile.
The children’s media conglomerate also tapped sales with the ToyHopper app in 2010 that let parents buy Disney toys on their iPhones, iPod touches or iPads (see story).
Additionally, Disney recently rolled out more than 50 mobile-optimized comics to Apple devices that targeted fans of the brand’s classic comics (see story).
“Mobile commerce adds the quick ease of searching product and information in the stores, catalog purchases while buying for holiday and much more,” Ms. Troutman said.
“With mobile being such an important marketing arm for Disney, being able to start and finish a transaction on mobile is pretty important,” she said.
Associated Press Debuts “iCircular” to Push Coupons to Mobile Users of Newspaper Apps | Mobile Marketing Watch
It was announced recently that the Associated Press (AP) has debuted a new service aimed at serving up coupons within mobile apps developed by participating newspapers around the country.
Dubbed “iCircular,” the new feature began appearing in mobile apps today as part of a pilot phase of a project announced nearly a year ago by the AP that aims to boost revenue for an industry that’s quickly being replaced by digital content. iCircular is meant to be the digital equivalent of coupons and other promotions that are inserted into the print editions of weekend newspapers. Those ads are among the most popular parts of Sunday newspapers.
A study by the Newspaper Association of America found nearly three-fourths of readers check advertising inserts, mostly to find out about sales, which falls in line with America’s continued love affair with coupons. Expanding on this trend and doing so in a collective fashion is a smart idea. The initial group of 40 newspapers adding iCircular to their phone apps includes the New York Daily News, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, The Boston Globe, The Dallas Morning News and San Francisco Chronicle. The phone apps of the newspapers that have agreed to use iCircular so far reach a combined audience of about 5 million people.
The AP says roughly 20 retailers have committed to running ads in iCircular so far, with the likes of Target Corp., Macy’s Inc., Kmart, Toys R Us and J.C. Penney Co topping the list. As this is just an initial pilot to see how things go no fees are being collected by advertisers, but the AP said it plans to negotiate the fees it will collect if the concept ends up paying off for both newspapers and retailers. Also, the AP wants to study user behavior before figuring out iCircular’s ad rates and possible service fees, said Mary Junck, the chair of the revenue committee on the AP’s board of directors. Junck is also CEO of Lee Enterprises Inc., the publisher of the St. Louis Dispatch and other newspapers. If it’s successful, iCircular will likely be expanded to work on the iPad and other tablet computers, Junck said.
Google Wallet launches for Sprint Nexus S 4G phones, enabling tap-and-pay transactions – Mobile Marketer – Payments
Google is releasing the first version of its Google Wallet app to Sprint Nexus S 4G phones and offering a $10 free bonus to users who sign up before the end of the year.
Google Wallet was first announced in May and is the result of partnership between Google, Citi, MasterCard, Sprint and First Data. The app lets mobile consumers use their phones as a wallet via a near field communications chip embedded in phones enabling them to tap and pay for items in stores.
“Our goal is to make it possible for you to add all of your payment cards to Google Wallet, so you can say goodbye to even the biggest traditional wallets,” said Osama Bedier, vice president of payments for Google, in a post on the commerce blog for Google, Mountain View, CA.
“This is still just the beginning and while we’re excited about this first step, we look forward to bringing Google Wallet to more phones in the future,” he said. .
The Google Wallet app is being rolled out to all Sprint Nexus S 4G phones through an over-the-air update.
Citi cardmembers can store offers on their mobile wallet, and will soon have the option of saving loyalty cards and gift cards.
The app lets user pay at participating retailers with a Citi MasterCard credit card or the Google Prepaid Card, which can be funded with any existing credit cards.
Google is adding a $10 free bonus to the Google Prepaid Card to early adopters to set up the app before the end of the year.
“This new technology makes paying with a Citi MasterCard on your smart phone as easy as making phone calls and sending text messages,” said Paul Galant, CEO of global enterprise payments for Citi, New York, on the company’s blog.
“Bringing this exciting innovation to market with our collaborators is a significant step forward in making our vision for mobile payments a reality, and is the latest in a series of initiatives that further our drive to become the world’s digital bank,” he said.
Participating retailers at launch include Champs, CVS, Duane Reade, Foot Locker, Jack in the Box, Peet’s Coffee and Tea, Radio Shack, Sports Authority and Sunoco. Others are expected to be added soon.
Google also said that because Visa, Discover and American Express have made available their NFC specifications, their cards could be added to future versions of Google Wallet.
Google Wallet is expected to be available on additional mobile devices in the near future.
“Sprint is thrilled to be the first U.S. carrier to offer Google Wallet,” said Fared Adib, vice president of product at Sprint, Overland Park, KS, in a statement from the company.
“Nexus S 4G is the first to receive new versions of Android software, and today’s upgrade puts the near-field communications, or NFC, chip in the phone to work so customers can have a secure virtual wallet on their phone. NFC capabilities on smartphones open the door to a new level of convenience and security,” he said.