Tag Archives: Trends

Sprituality in abuse.

I was watching the India-Australia quarter-finals of the ICC World Cup 2011 at a lounge bar with a group of friends. Seated not very far was a group of four – 2 young couples who had also come to enjoy the match on the big screen, as everyone else in the bar that evening.

Both the boys seated together on a sofa, across the girls, however, were engrossed with their mobile phones.  The girls kept watching the match, chatted intermittently. Finally however, one of the girls, asked the boys “Why come here if you wanted to be the phone?”.

The boys ignored the question, prompting the girl to share a meaningful smile with the other, accompanied by “#@#*#&e (hindi expletive) hain”. How it was said was priceless.

The other girl laughed. Boys continued…on their phones.

The words seemed mildly inappropriate, coming from a beautiful girl, but brought a brief smile on my face even at that time.The meaning however is deeper.

Things that we were meant to enjoy go wasted, as we busy ourselves with nonsense.

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Releasing 'India Social Media Survey Report – Edition 1' in digital format.


The wait is finally over…
We had released the findings of India Social Media Survey Report – Edition 1 in a hard copy format at the India Social Media Summit, end March.
The report, available for sale through exchange4media costs only Rs. 1500/- and consists valuable pieces stories and case-studies (you can send us requests for purchase at socialmediasurvey@blogworks.in and we will forward them to the e4m team).
However, keeping with our promise of sharing knowledge for the benefit of the community and marketers, we are today releasing an online version of the survey findings! 🙂
The Social Media Survey Report- Edition 1 attempts to capture insights and learnings from Corporates and Marketers of India, to get a sense of what’s really happening on the ground in the rapidly evolving social media environment.
Results and analysis will surely help understand how peers, from across India, view social media (SM) impact on marketing & communication. This will allow the industry to benefit from shared insights and make for educated decisions.
The survey , undertaken by us jointly with exchange4media.com in Dec 2008 & Jan 2009, takes a deep dive into questions that matters to all of us:

  1. Does Social Media enjoy credibility?
  2. Does Social Media impact business?
  3. Is Social Media based used as a sales tool? Or as a buzz tool? Or for engagement?
  4. Do you believe that Social Media impacts purchase decisions?
  5. Do marketers understand Social Media?
  6. What about Agencies? Do they?
  7. Are clients spending money on Social Media?
  8. Do they intend to? 🙂
  9. What are the top metrics that marketers believe in, while calculating RoI
  10. And much more…

Find out what our respondents said? Were you one of them? 🙂 Some sample slides are here:

You can download the full report by going here. Hope you find it useful.
Do share your feedback and any errors you might notice, by writing to us at socialmediasurvey@blogworks.in

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Urban youth – insights from a recent interaction.

I recently interviewed my young niece, a typical urban teenager. These are some insight I was able to draw:

  1. Spends 30 mins on the Internet each day.
  2. Facebook rules; game has shifted from Orkut – why? Orkut is ‘local’.
  3. Gets Rs. 1000 as pocket money/ month; buys own Metro tickets.
  4. But mom recharges the mobile (yes, every teenager has a mobile of own).
  5. Her phone is her phone, only see sees her messages.
  6. Given that messages cost the same as a call, both share equal proportion of spends.
  7. Café Coffee Day is favourite hang-out place; Mocha is cool; Pizza Hut is visited often.
  8. Visits to these places take place as a group – boys and girls go together.
  9. Boys mostly have cars.
  10. Cars are often pooled, as its more fun that way.
  11. Most girls have boyfriends.
  12. Career is primary focus, lots of time is spent studying.
  13. While she is in school, there are 3-4 day coaching classes to prepare for admission into MBBS.
  14. Travels over 20 kms in Metro to attend these.
  15. Music is on Ipod, some on the mobile too, but Ipod is preferred as it’s a focused device.
  16. Shahrukh’s Don is the only Don she knows; THIS is the original – she hasn’t seen the one starring Amitabh and therefore doesn’t matter.
  17. Hrithik looks good, Shahrukh is ok, so is Amitabh, so is Salman.
  18. Deepika Padukone looks desi, Priyanka Chopra is cool, Rani acts well.
  19. Look conscious – eats very carefully – wants fat-free curd.
  20. Family is still very-very important.
  21. Parents are parents, but sense of ‘fear’ that earlier generations faced is gone.
  22. Corrects dad if feels doesn’t agree with attitude/ behavior.
  23. Mom is a friend.

She clearly knows her mind. Is this just my niece?
Urban teenagers are now clearly ‘people’ and not accessories to their parents. They have a life of their own, a mind too.
Careers are however still influenced by parents in big way – maybe because it is they who primarily fund it still?

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2009 Trend # 4 – Social Media for Marketing, focus on RoI

In my India Social Media Trends 2009 series, here’s the # 4 thought, in no order of priority.
Even as corporate blogging remains amongst the most hyped up phrases, it’s really blogs & social media adoption for marketing, from simple (and yet most powerful) listening to pro-active engagement that’s catching on. This year…
Expect Social Media adoption by marketers to go mainstream; focus on RoI.
I had recently written this post sharing why I thought social media is going to be a large beneficiary of an enhanced focus on online media, in wake of the economic slowdown and a clear influence on purchase decisions.
On the other hand, I expect adoption of corporate blogging to remain slow.
What could the organizations/ marketers be doing? Let me cheat a little and paste questions we recently asked marketers in the recently concluded “India Social Media Survey, Brands and Corporates” Edition 1
Question: If you are presently engaged in any social media activity on behalf of your brand/ organisation, please specify (you can select as many)
1. We have a company blog (include internal blog too).
2. Our website has interactive web 2.0 functionality allowing interactions through comments; syndication through email/ RSS ; podcasts; voting tools etc.
3. We track what stakeholders are saying about our brand/ organization on blogs & consumer rating/comment sites.
4. We regularly engage in blogger outreach progamme.
5. We comment on blogs & social networking sites whenever our brand/ organization is mentioned.
6. We upload photos & vides on sites like Flickr, YouTube.
7. We have presence on social networking sites like Orkut, Facebook, Big Adda etc. in form of communities/ applications.
8. We have a branded community of our own.
9. We participate actively on micro-blogging platforms – example Twitter.com
10. We use mobile marketing programmes to reach customers
11. We invite consumer participation in product creation through online research and ground engagement
12.Others, please specify
One of the key concerns surrounding social media adoption/ evaluation has been RoI. With a sharp focus on value, thanks to the slowdown, combined with better tools 1, 2, 3 to track/ measure, the focus this year is also going to be on measurement/ trying to evolve an acceptable matrix.
In the same survey, we asked:
What in your opinion would be top matrix to evaluate success of a social media programme? Choose up to 3 that you think are most important for you.
a. Registrations on website/ communities
b. Number of touch points with the consumer
c. Volume of user generated content
d. Increased number of participants
e. Increased stakeholder participation
f. Mention of brand/ organization in stakeholder conversations
g. Share of voice brand/ organization enjoys in comparison to chosen competition
h. Focus that the brand enjoys in social media conversations
i. Positive tone of comments, feedback, links, reviews, forwards etc.
j. Connections & conversations established with stakeholders
k. Impact in mainstream media
l. Impact on brand awareness
m. Impact on trust & transparency ratings
n. Impact on sales
o. Impact on product & service creation/ after sales service
p. Support during crisis/ adversity
q. Other – please specify
I will keep you updated about what the preferred parameters for marketers are, once the survey results are out.

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2009 Trend #3 -Blogs become second skin, for mainstream media

In my India Social Media Trends 2009 series, here’s the # 3 thought, in no order of priority.
Blogs become second skin, for mainstream media.
But first, let’s just take a look back to understand the context:
Newsy blogs consisting individuals, or small teams, with no or little editorial hierarchies and baggage; equipped by sites hosted on friendly content management systems that allowed publishing on the go; a will to work long hours, even without monetary considerations; willingness to link freely (many times also adopting to brazen plagiarism from mainstream media) meant that blogs could come-up with/ aggregate meaningful content, very fast.
Given that they were hosted on Web 2.0 platforms, conversations through comments were already built-in, traction and loyalty grew.
On the other hand, some journalist pioneers were beginning to use blogs to connect with stakeholders – validate facts, seed stories, research ideas, publish stories that didn’t meet editorial mandates of respective publications and more…readers were able to relate better with faces that interacted with them rather than faceless bylines.
Some bloggers developed strong communities of their own and were approached/ approached mainstream media to publish columns etc.
It was just a matter of time before the media-houses adopted blogs themselves. What was a random case, or two, until even a year seems to be gathering momentum.
Sample these:

  1. IBNLive
  2. Livemint
  3. HindustanTimes
  4. Cosmopolitan

This year…

  1. Expect most mainstream media to start blogs bringing director’s cut of news, building conversations.
  2. Expect many of them to create touch points at places other than their own domain names (many, like LiveMint and DNA are already on Twitter
  3. Expect more-and-more journalists to start blogging.

How long, before blogs start to deliver more eye-balls (and conversations) than the formal news items?
UPDATE 05 February 2009: A couple of weeks ago, Vir Sanghi, arguably the most powerful editor-journalist-columnist in India and certainly amongst the best read writers, launched VirSanghvi.com. I was thrilled to see it, not only because I love to read Vir’s food writings, but also because this is what I have been saying is clearly the sign of things to come.

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