How marketers are tailoring their content strategy for a multi-channel, multi-device world

tablet coffee shop

This sponsored post is produced in association with Citrix GoToWebinar.

We’re living in a technologically empowered age where smartphones, tablets, laptops, wearables, and e-readers reign supreme and customers are spoilt for choice not just for the content, but for the platform they wish to view it on.

Fortunately, content is still king for consumers. And the top marketers in the industry are the ones that can tap into the power of connected data and understand what sparks and sustains user interaction across different platforms.

The key to building a solid multi-platform content strategy is to have a keen understanding of the limitations of new technology and how you can create tailored content for each platform. And that demands a highly dynamic content strategy that offers a unique experience to users across each channel.

Your customer is a moving target, and you need to be fully tuned into their content consumption habits and device preferences to actively adapt your content strategy for attracting the right audience.

Making mobile a priority is non-negotiable

At this point, denying the impact of mobile marketing is like trying to contest the existence of gravity. According to a 2014 comScore report, 31 percent of content published by top media entities is viewed solely on smartphones and more than half of U.S. users spend the majority of their time consuming digital media with mobile apps. Google, Amazon, Apple, Yahoo, and Facebook collectively topped the list for highest combined platform usage.

A recent study conducted by Millward Brown revealed that nearly 60 percent of buyers use mobile devices to research their purchases.

It is becoming increasingly evident that the intrinsic value of your content in the eyes of mobile-savvy users instantly shoots up if your brand maintains a consistent multi-platform presence. However, you need to keep in mind that content relevance means a lot more than multi-channel presence.

Here are some of the most rewarding practices used by content marketers to captivate mobile users:

1. Make it locally relevant

Whether you’re setting up a mobile-optimized website or a mobile app, location plays a monumental role in determining your audience’s content consumption habits.

According to a mobile media consumption study done by Pew Research Center, 74 percent of adult smartphone owners ages 18 and older say they use their phone to get directions or other information based on their current location. Location-enabled services in apps allow marketers to target consumers at the right time – and right place – giving marketers a golden opportunity to serve location-specific content to consumers and make their brand interactions worthwhile.

For example, Blis Media helped Spotify produce excellent results by serving ads in airport coffee shops based on the assumption that people would be inclined to purchase last-minute travel entertainment.

Foursquare, Waze, Tinder, and Google Now have also done a splendid job delivering high quality location-specific content through the efficient use of big data. You can easily entice people walking by your store to walk in simply by offering a sweet check-in deal on Facebook or Foursquare.

2. Optimize for push messaging

Thanks to this newfound context-driven approach, content marketing through messaging for apps has become a lot more productive.

The highest click rates come from short messages (10 or fewer words) packed with words like “offer,” “super,” “ends” and “deal”. A 2014 Localytics report on push messaging revealed that there’s a 66 percent higher click rate on push messages that are sent on weekdays, and the ideal time to send them to users is between 12 p.m to 5 p.m.

Make your content relevant and timely by sending offers and updates on products users have viewed before. For instance, a user may have abandoned their online shopping cart with a few Burberry clothing items for some unknown reason in the past. By following up with a notification like “Your favorite item: Burberry Check Coat – now 20% off”, you have a high chance of rekindling the transaction.

3. Prioritize visual content

Social Bakers looked at the top 10 percent of posts made by more than 30,000 Facebook brand pages and found that posts with photos saw the most engagement—accounting for a whopping 87 percent of total interactions.

Mobile consumers strongly prefer rich visual content over text-heavy content due to the limitation of screen space and straightforward nature of the brand communication. Therefore, opting for catchy infographics and visually striking banners to promote your brand will prove to be a lot more engaging.

4. Champion responsive design

If you’re aiming to deliver a seamless content interaction experience to your customers across different platforms, then investing in responsive design should be on the top of your priority list – particularly if you haven’t yet invested in a mobile app. It allows automatic optimization of content across devices for effortless navigation and eliminates the need to create a mobile version of your website.

Big players in the media industry like USA Today and Disney have implemented responsive design across a number of their properties to streamline the cross-platform content experience for audiences.

Here are some of the key elements involved in implementing responsive design for marketing content across mobile devices:

  • Readability –to make sure that your message is easily visible, use at least 14 point fonts.
  • Navigability  to accommodate finger tapping for navigation more efficiently, avoid cluttering the page with unnecessary elements and create big buttons.
  • Adaptability — to target users more effectively, leverage the power of big data to change specific elements of your website, ad, or email body based on the past interactions of the user. Amazon’s brilliant recommendation engine is one of the best examples of dynamic content strategy.
  • Granularity — to deliver your content effectively across all platforms, plan it in such a way that you can break down your content into shareable tweets, Facebook posts, quotes, etc. without losing the authenticity of your brand message.
  • Action Potential — to focus your reader’s attention on the key points, use a single column to structure your content and place your call-to-action at the top of the screen.

It’s not easy to ignore that the always-on nature of social media can be a really intimidating factor in devising your content marketing strategy, not to mention the need to continually feed other content across your owned properties. However, if your content is crisp and you know your consumer profile and the best way to reach them, then delivering a seamless multi-platform content experience is not a dream so far-fetched.


Sponsored posts are content that has been produced by a company that is either paying for the post or has a business relationship with VentureBeat, and they’re always clearly marked. The content of news stories produced by our editorial team is never influenced by advertisers or sponsors in any way. For more information, contact [email protected].










India accuses Google of rigging search results following complaints by Facebook, Microsoft

Google sign Neon Tommy Flickr

The Indian government has formally accused Google of manipulating its search results to favor its own products.

According to a story today in the Economic Times of India, the government took actions after receiving a host of complaints from Google’s competitors, including Facebook, Microsoft, Flipkart, Nokia’s maps division, and MakeMy-Trip.com. The charges made by India’s Competition Commission closely mirror the anti-trust charges filed earlier this year by the European Commission.

The Times story said the agency had canvassed 30 businesses that provide a range of services that compete with Google. The case was filed last week, and Google has until Sept. 10 to file a response. If the ruling goes against Google, the company could be forced to pay up to 10 percent of its revenues in penalties.

The charges are the latest regulatory headache for a company that has been trying to argue for years that it is not abusing its dominant position in search across the globe. While U.S. regulators opted not to pursue a case, EC officials filed their formal case after spending years trying to negotiate a settlement with Google.

With Google essentially locked out of the massive Chinese Internet market, it would be a big blow to the company if it is also forced to curtail its activity in India. That country is one of the fastest growing in terms of smartphone use and Internet adoption, making it a lucrative target for many U.S. tech companies looking for ways to continue growing.

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Ashley Madison fires back, says ratio of men to women is 1.2 to 1 with thousands still signing up

Ashley Madison

Hacking victim Ashley Madison wants you to know that reports of its demise are premature, and that reports that there are no women on the site are totally bogus.

In a new blog post today, the company said thanks to the publicity, “hundreds of thousands” of new users have signed up this week, including 87,596 women.

“Recent media reports predicting the imminent demise of Ashley Madison are greatly exaggerated,” the company said. “The company continues its day-to-day operations even as it deals with the theft of its private data by criminal hackers. Despite having our business and customers attacked, we are growing.”

The statement comes just a couple of days after Avid Life Media CEO Noel Biderman left the company following a major hack and leak of its internal data. Last week, reporter Annalee Newitz of Gizmodo analyzed that data and concluded there were virtually no real females actually using that service.

In the post, Ashley Madison said her analysis and assumptions were incorrect.

“Last week alone, women sent more than 2.8 million messages within our platform,” the company said. “Furthermore, in the first half of this year the ratio of male members who paid to communicate with women on our service versus the number of female members who actively used their account (female members are not required to pay to communicate with men on Ashley Madison) was 1.2 to 1.”

The company noted that its app is the 14th highest grossing app in the social networking category in the U.S. Apple App Store. It also said that 70 percent of that revenue comes from members who make repeat purchases, indicating that customers are more than satisfied.


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The anatomy of an Agile marketing team

cogheads

This sponsored post is produced by Workfront. 

If you’ve been halfway tapped into the marketing zeitgeist lately, you’ve seen this phrase: Agile marketing.

Everybody’s talking about it as the “next thing in marketing.” It even has its own manifesto. Despite all this hooplah, however, you shouldn’t feel too bad if you can’t quite put your finger on what Agile marketing is.

Take a look at the Agile marketing groups on sites like LinkedIn, and it becomes clear that more than a few people are a tad confused about it. Is it simply restructuring your marketing and in-house creative teams and their processes to be more nimble? Sort of. Does it just mean streamlining your process and jettisoning any baggage that slows your team down? Kind of.

To give you a nice, clean 20,000-foot explanation of it, Agile is a work management methodology that has been dominating IT work management for the last several years. It has been known to increase teams’ flexibility and ability to react to demand while improving productivity. Now that it’s proven itself effective, the marketing folks have taken notice.

Agile-driven creative teams have reported that, freed from the endless development cycles that can happen in traditional marketing work management, their creativity has experienced a major boost. Creative teams have seen their productivity explode by 400 percent and with less fuss. Marketing teams can test and iterate on campaigns faster.

If that last paragraph caught your attention, read on to see the four essential steps every creative team will need to follow to successfully manage their workflow using an Agile methodology:

1. Have a process to accommodate all kinds of requests

Agile is designed to handle all kinds of work, but that means your request management process should, too. Teams need to have a central place where requests can be submitted, including project-based assignments, formal one-off requests, and informal one-off requests.

Also, a creative brief is a must to allow your team to assign a required number of hours to it as a story.

If your team shares work with teams that don’t practice Agile marketing, a work solution that can handle mixed methodologies is highly recommended. Otherwise, you could find yourself duplicating requests and communication between your tools and their tools, which can suck up a lot of your team’s time.


exclamation-001To learn more about how Agile marketing works, join Chief Martec’s Scott Brinker and other experts for a webinar on how marketing teams can adopt this best practice without losing the creative and artistic elements that make them shine.

Register today for free! Tuesday, September 1 at 10 a.m. Pacific, 1 p.m. Eastern. 


2. Maintain your backlog

As requests enter your domain, they officially become stories within your backlog, a running collection of all your outstanding stories. Under the advisement of your team, you will assign a number of hours to each story, so that you can easily choose the most important and doable stories when it comes time to organize your sprint. If a story takes up more than six hours, consider breaking the story into two more bite-sized stories.

Your backlog can be managed in any number of media: whiteboards, bulletin boards, index cards, or work management software. This backlog should sorted by priority, whether by deadline, ROI, or client.

3. Hold your sprint planning meeting

With your backlog all sorted, you’re ready to kick off your sprint with a planning meeting. During this meeting, your team will gather to look at your backlog and decide which stories to work on during the upcoming sprint. As stories are moved to the burndown chart, these stories are assigned to individual team members, who commit to complete their stories within the sprint.

4. Keep an eye on your burndown chart

As your team works on their stories, they should also move their stories from ‘incomplete’ to ‘in progress’ to ‘approval’ to ‘complete’ on the burndown chart, so everyone can see their progress in near-real time. A good burndown chart will also include a graph showing how much has been completed versus what was planned to be completed.

When done right, this very public chart keeps stakeholders updated and provides a little extra motivation for team members.

5. Wrap up with a sprint retrospective

One of the key principles of Agile Marketing is its focus on continuous improvement and collaboration. Holding a sprint retrospective at the end of your sprint is crucial to your continued success. What worked? What didn’t? Which parts of the process need to be changed for the next project?

More than just a round of high-fives, this meeting should generate at least one improvement for the next sprint. Then, armed with this new learning, you begin the process all over again…

David Lesue is Creative Director at Workfront.


Sponsored posts are content that has been produced by a company that is either paying for the post or has a business relationship with VentureBeat, and they’re always clearly marked. The content of news stories produced by our editorial team is never influenced by advertisers or sponsors in any way. For more information, contact [email protected].










Acer founder says he’s open to takeover amid stock price slide

Acer Chromebook 15

TAIPEI (Reuters) – Acer founder Stan Shih said he would welcome a takeover of the struggling Taiwanese computer maker after a steep fall in its share price, while warning any potential buyer would pay a heavy price.

“Welcome,” Shih told reporters in response to a question about whether Acer would be open to a takeover. He added however that any buyer would get an “empty shell” and would pay dearly.

“U.S. and European management teams usually are concerned about money, their CEOs only work for money. But Taiwanese are more concerned about a sense of mission and emotional factors,” he said.

His remarks were first reported by Taiwanese media on Thursday and were confirmed by a company spokesman.

Acer has reported steep on-year sales falls in recent months, including a 33 percent drop in July.

It posted a T$176 million ($5.40 million) net profit in the first six months of 2015, versus a T$486 million net profit in the same period a year ago.

Its stock price has fallen by nearly half since early April.

(Reporting by Michael Gold; Editing by Stephen Coates)

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Japan bids farewell to modernist design icon as Hotel Okura begins pre-Olympic renovation

The Hotel Okura, a favoured Tokyo lodging for U.S. presidents, movie stars and other celebrities, is closing the doors of its landmark half-century-old main building on Monday to make way for a pair of glass towers ahead of the 2020 Olympics. The redo raised an outcry from those who love the Okura's unique mA©lange of modernism and traditional Japanese esthetics.

Leaked video claims to show Sony’s upcoming Xperia Z5 smartphone models

A screen grab from the leaked video interview purporting to show the Sony Xperia Z5

Sony may be making headlines with its push into drones, but the Japanese company’s Android smartphones are still what command a loyal following and get many fans excited.

Last week leaked renders of Microsoft’s upcoming flagship Lumia phones for its Windows 10 mobile launch surfaced, and today it’s Sony’s turn to take the spotlight (again) thanks to a leaked video interview uploaded Sunday (in French).

We already saw three leaked press images of the Sony Xperia Z5 last Thursday, courtesy of an apparent slip by Sony Mobile’s social media channels (we’ve included the pictures below, via Xperia Blog), but this is the first time we’re seeing the three Z5 models in video.


From VentureBeat
VB just released Mobile User Acquisition: How top publishers get the best users for less money. $499 on VB Insight, or free with your martech subscription.

The man being interviewed in the video is reportedly Olivier Terme, director of marketing over at Sony Mobile Communications. The company is expected to officially announce the new Z5 phones as early as Wednesday, ahead of the IFA 2015 trade show in Berlin that kicks off Friday.

Here are the rumoured specs that we can expect to see:

  • 5.2-inch screen, full HD 1080 x 1920 resolution (a smaller 4.6-inch display with a 720 x 1280 resolution is expected for the Xperia Z5 Compact, and a 5.5-inch screen with 4K resolution for the Xperia Z5 Premium)
  • 23MP rear camera that can shoot 4K video
  • Snapdragon 810, octa-core 2.0GHz CPU + Adreno 430 GPU
  • 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage
  • 8MP front-facing camera
  • Fingerprint scanner on the side

We’ve reached out to Sony to see if they want to comment on the video leak, and we’ll update you if we hear back.

In the meantime, you can check out the full video below (head down past the video for the leaked photos from last week):

Xperia-Z5-Press_3-640x451

Xperia-Z5-Press_1-640x451

Xperia-Z5-Press_2-640x451

More information:

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Leaked video claims to show Sony’s upcoming Xperia Z5 smartphone models

A screen grab from the leaked video interview purporting to show the Sony Xperia Z5

Sony may be making headlines with its push into drones, but the Japanese company’s Android smartphones are still what command a loyal following and get many fans excited.

Last week leaked renders of Microsoft’s upcoming flagship Lumia phones for its Windows 10 mobile launch surfaced, and today it’s Sony’s turn to take the spotlight (again) thanks to a leaked video interview uploaded Sunday (in French).

We already saw three leaked press images of the Sony Xperia Z5 last Thursday, courtesy of an apparent slip by Sony Mobile’s social media channels (we’ve included the pictures below, via Xperia Blog), but this is the first time we’re seeing the three Z5 models in video.


From VentureBeat
VB just released Mobile User Acquisition: How top publishers get the best users for less money. $499 on VB Insight, or free with your martech subscription.

The man being interviewed in the video is reportedly Olivier Terme, director of marketing over at Sony Mobile Communications. The company is expected to officially announce the new Z5 phones as early as Wednesday, ahead of the IFA 2015 trade show in Berlin that kicks off Friday.

Here are the rumoured specs that we can expect to see:

  • 5.2-inch screen, full HD 1080 x 1920 resolution (a smaller 4.6-inch display with a 720 x 1280 resolution is expected for the Xperia Z5 Compact, and a 5.5-inch screen with 4K resolution for the Xperia Z5 Premium)
  • 23MP rear camera that can shoot 4K video
  • Snapdragon 810, octa-core 2.0GHz CPU + Adreno 430 GPU
  • 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage
  • 8MP front-facing camera
  • Fingerprint scanner on the side

We’ve reached out to Sony to see if they want to comment on the video leak, and we’ll update you if we hear back.

In the meantime, you can check out the full video below (head down past the video for the leaked photos from last week):

Xperia-Z5-Press_3-640x451

Xperia-Z5-Press_1-640x451

Xperia-Z5-Press_2-640x451

More information:

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