B2B Marketers: Get Cracking and Get Social

B2B and Social Media Marketing

Recent studies reveal that 73% of B2B Marketers who make use of social media tools have been very effective in delivering content and driving traffic to websites., Yet, today Marketers are skeptic about exploring the possibilities of the digital universe. Having said that, my question to all the marketers, especially those who specialize in the area of B2B would be- in this day and age when you hear of a budding company or a service, what do you do first? I’m guessing:

Step 1: Google what you are looking for

Step 2: Look for their Facebook page to ensure that it is a legit company

Step 3: Boom! In less than 2 minutes you have probably made a judgment about the product or service

Am I right or am I right? Let’s admit it. We are all snooping and digging to get the best deals. Actually, I would like to call this as ‘doing my due diligence’. Having said that, if I were considering opening a store and looking at purchasing opportunities from a whole-seller, let’s say in India who does not have any digital presence except a beaten down website, would I really think of the company highly? My answer would be, NO. I don’t know about the baby-bloomer generation, maybe they think it’s a waste of money to invest in a digital presence, but I can assure you that generation Y functions differently. We do want to see dazzling websites along with engaging social media presence because the reality is that none of us really want to talk to too many people, we just want to research make a judgment and redeem services or purchase products. It’s as easy as that.

Whether it is the architectural industry, IT consulting or retail, my advice to all the B2B marketers would be to wake up and smell the coffee. If at all you are looking at sustaining your Business presence in the long run, investing in creating a brand is almost mandatory. Here is a good start for those of you who want to begin creating an effective brand image:

–       Website re-vamp: Ensure that your website is informative, visually appealing and user-friendly

–       Content: Marketing in 2013 has wholly revolved around content. Sources state that 23% of Internet time is spent on blogs. So if you are looking at converting that traffic into leads, I would say invest in content of all kind, – e-mailers, newsletters, webinars, slideshares etc. In other words, good content is directly proportional to SEO optimization

–        Social Media: Identify what social media tools work best for you and start engaging your audience. Keep in mind that retaining a potential customer and keeping them informed and engaged is more valuable than acquiring one –  both financially as well as socially. So, get Social! You really don’t want to metamorphosize into a relic company and perish because you could not stay germane. Yes, some traditional marketing techniques are still a vital part. But believe me this is changing and in a few years it could even be non-existent. Who knows?! Perhaps, we could all be a part of digital conventions someday so get cracking and get social.

-Naimeesha Murthy

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Someone cast a spell!

Do you remember doing dictation when you were little? Yes, the one where the teacher read out a word and you wrote it down and points were awarded for spelling it correctly. Where ‘Practice’ and ‘Practise’ and ‘diary’ and ‘diary’ could be your undoing!

Not so long ago, when I came across a difficult word, I read it a couple of times, trying to memorise it in the hope that I could use it again and spell it correctly. I do not do that anymore.

Why not? Well, for one, just like the Microsoft Word document I am typing this in, everything comes with a built-in dictionary. I can even type gibberish and Word will helpfully offer a meaningful word or a sentence. I no longer have to remember how connoisseur is spelt. I no longer try to remember anything, as a matter of fact. For I think that I will always have Google by my side!

It sounds surprisingly like a good thing, that it is indeed making our lives easier, but that is just a façade. The fact that we are depending lesser on our brains and more on the devices around us can only spell doom. I wonder what everyone would do if there was a humungous power outage that lasted days and all we could do was read regular books and use a pen and paper. That unlikely possibility aside, I just do not like the idea of needing a word processer/ T9 dictionary to express myself in writing.

Think Twitter – expressing yourself in 140 characters or less. We, as people, want to convey as much as we can and 140 characters are, well, rather less! This makes us use all kind of abbreviations, often making people ask in the comments, “Did you mean ‘ate’ when you wrote 8?” It sounds hilarious, but it is just a little scary.

Remember orkut and now Facebook? Commenting on photos and liking status messages leaves us short of time, making us want to keep our sentences as short as possible. With the advent of smart phones and them being used for social networking, “wat is dis?” is not an uncommon sentence to be seen. The smooth touch keyboards make us less likely to type too!

Sms-ese  (The language of SMSes. Inspired from the word Chinese/Japanese) has attracted enough hate mail. But it continues to be ironically funny. HRU? TTYL. BRB. GR8. Though I belong to the SMS generation, it still irks me no end to decipher these cryptic sentences.  Webster must definitely be turning in his grave.

Also, depending on auto-correct could lead to quite a few mix-ups.

That one did go well, but Google some autocorrect mix-ups. (They are too politically incorrect to be here, but they are hilarious!)

Maybe the next time you read a difficult word, you will pause and murmur the word to yourself a couple of times?

By – Jayashree Bhat

Image Courtesy: http://www.9gag.com

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The iPad killer?


Recently, amongst much drama and excitement, Microsoft unveiled their jealously guarded secret, the Microsoft Surface tablet. Touted to be the iPad killer, the Microsoft Surface tablet has raised speculations about the future of portable devices for social networking.  The surface tablet is rumoured to be the last work in terms of entertainment and business applications.  Let’s see what the fuss is all about!

It’s thin.

At 9.3 mm, it is wonderfully portable. Right now, the iPad is the last word in portability. The chassis looks sturdy and well-finished and could be a viable competitor.



The display.

It’s a 16:9 widescreen display, especially designed for better social networking. (It is what everyone cares most about, after all!) With a decent camera, the tablet could be brilliant for video calls and conferencing. Facebook, email and all kinds of social networking will be easily accessible from the Metro themed Home screen.


The best part – the portable keyboard. It can do things apart from entertainment!



The keyboard seems a little too good to be true. It is built right into the magnetic cover and it attaches itself to the tablet for easy usability. With this, it overcomes the iPad’s main disadvantage – typing/chatting for long hours with a friend on an iPad is painful on the fingers. While the iPad is a solid device, it fails in terms of getting any work done – even simple documents and presentations. It is a brilliant secondary device while the Microsoft surface tablet promises to be capable of handling both.

Powered with Windows 8 (There is also an optional Windows RT version) the Surface Tablet will now have the same Metro theme running across its phone as well as the tablet. This integration, similar to Apple’s uniformity across MacBooks and iPads, is sure to attract many.

The kickstand on the back of the tablet is a well thought of feature and would be brilliant for video-chatting. Especially for bloggers on the go, this could be the answer to their prayers.

We all know that the iPad is not something you would use to get your work done. With a USB port built in, the tablet could finally be the one device that can step up and get some work done!

The target audience –

This will be for those who think the iPad’s great and love portable devices but are hesitating, considering Apple’s high prices and lack of business use. Have you heard the joke that’s doing rounds on the internet?

“There’s one thing I know about the next Apple device – ”
“- I won’t be able to afford it.”

While that’s funny, it could be what makes the Microsoft Surface Tablet tick.

It’s fashionable and good-looking.



With four different keyboards, there is one for every mood. Which one would you pick?

Image courtesy: http://www.microsoft.com/surface

By – Jayashree Bhat 

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Open Happiness!


Coco-cola! “Open Happiness”, “Live on the Coke Side of Life” and closer home, ‘Jo chaaho who ho jaaye Coca-Cola, enjoy’ – some taglines that have stuck in our memory over the years. They have come up with some of the best marketing and advertising campaigns and have aggressively made their presence and brand felt everywhere – earlier in Television, Radio and billboards and today, through Social Media.

In our opinion, the things that Coco-cola did right –

1.“Liquid and Linked”

That is how Coke describes its new marketing strategy. To describe what “Liquid” means, think of well, a liquid. A liquid can be stored in a glass, a jug or a bottle. You can even share it with people around you. That is what Coke is aiming at – having advertising content that can reach customers as is, content that can be shared on phones, TV and the internet and content that can go viral. Yet, they are all one liquid, contributing to the Coke goal. The idea is to produce content that is so good that you cannot help but share it. Making people talk about you is the best way to reach as far as possible.

How do you generate content that is Liquid and Linked? It cannot be boring and preachy. It has to be funny and something people relate to and want to post on their Facebook walls. “Storytelling” is what Coke calls it. It has to be funny, pretty and memorable. Meanwhile, they have delved into the psychology of consumers to create a deep emotional connection with their advertising, to create a personal experience the consumer will remember. Good stuff, I think

2. Having a simple, clear goal. “Double Coke’s consumption by 2020.” That is it. Easy to understand and work towards without a need for detailed explanations. Sometimes, marketing jargons creep into company goals, making the goal/s removed and distant from the people involved. Would you like to work towards something you don’t understand?

3.Recognizing the importance of Social Media. And very importantly, doing so at the right time. Today, it is not just a catchy ad that earns you business. Studies and statistics show that more consumers rely on the reviews and opinions of other people when buying a product.

4. Being extremely catchy. Their advertisements and slogans are some of the best in the market, and they have consistently kept it up. Having a good product is not just enough – you need to present it as best as you can, over and over again.

All this goes to prove that Marketing is ever-evolving and Social Marketing is this season’s new flavor. It is definitely here to stay. And Coke has caught on at just the right time. Check out this video for another brilliant campaign by Coke.

– Jayashree Bhat

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Impulsive shopping – redefined by ‘The Fancy’


Here’s a site that could give the third most popular social networking site (Pinterest) a real run for it’s money. Pinterest is very often referred to as an ‘inspirational’ site that lets you look at all the wonderful things in the world and ‘pin’ it on your online virtual board but you can’t actually have it or own it no matter how much you want it. Ofcourse you can look at the picture, save it or carry it and look at a similar replacement of the product when you actually want t buy it. But ‘The Fancy’ – an e-commerce version of Pinterest actually lets you buy the stuff you see and believes in the ‘accidental’ shopping model. Fancy, according to its about page is, “part store, blog, magazine and wishlist. It’s a place to discover great stuff, to curate a collection of things you love, to get updates on your favorite brands and stores and to share your discoveries.”  Some even say Fancy = Pinterest+Tumblr+Amazon

How it works:

Step 1: You spot a picture of guy wearing an Omega watch. You save the image, add a title and upload it to your Fancy feed. You link it to the Omega site, write a comment and file it under the “men’s” category. As the photo goes live, the notes you add join Fancy’s database along with the tags, title and key words in the comments section.

Step 2: A Sales person from Omega checks the site and sees your post and if he has an account he gets an e-mail notice. The sales person then quickly creates a listing for the new product in his vendor profile and tags it with key attributes and submits it to Fancy. Fancy then does its backend check to ensure the link between the photo and seller is legit and the product for sale is of a high quality for the safety of it’s users.

Step 3: Soon after, your friend who follow you checks his Fancy feed and sees your posting of the watch and receives notice that they’re on sale. He clicks to buy, then checks out as you would on any site. The seller then accepts the order and the purchase is made!

The people behind the Fancy

–          31 year old Joe Einhorn is the man behind The Fancy

–          François-Henri Pinault, the billionaire head of PPR Group, kicked in $10 million for a 10% stake last October.

–          $8 million came from backers like Ashton Kutcher, MTV founder Bob Pittman and Andreessen Horowitz (for an undisclosed amount of equity)

–          Fancy’s governing board includes Twitter’s Jack Dorsey, Facebook’s Chris Hughes and billionaire hedge fund operator Jim Pallotta, who owns the Boston Celtics.


Joe Einhorn

What has caught the eyeballs

Hollywood biggies like Kanye West and P.Diddy like the Fancy. Mark Zuckerburg too is said to have joined this site with the name ‘zuckd’ and so far he has more than 102,000 followers and fancied an Extendo Library Shelving System. However Joe Einhorn says he has no information as to why Zuckerberg joined the site but said it’s a “thrilling” development. Trade pundits are even taking about a possible acquisition here.

Photo Credit: allthingsd.com

By: Suruchi & Naimeesha

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Social Networking on the Windows Phone

We have all heard enough about social networking on Android and the large number of applications available for the same. Windows Phones (We are talking about the Windows Phone 7 Mango update here) are largely designed to aid social networking with just a few clicks.

Things we love about the Windows Phone

The People Hub

This is where all your social networking needs begin and end.


The People Hub gives you updates from all your social networks, be it Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter. And no, you will not be overwhelmed with updates (we all have that friend who posts about the Fortune Cookie he just opened on Facebook) because you can filter what you would like to see. You can choose to share a single status update with multiple social networking sites as well.

Have a contact you talk to all the time? Simply click on his/her contact and pin it to the start and you can see all their updates with one click. It is really that simple.

And yes, if you are one of those who like to keep their social networks separate and integration of everything in one is not what you want, you can always download separate apps for Facebook, Twitter, FourSquare or any other social network of your choice from the marketplace!

The Pictures Hub



The ‘What’s New’ section of the Pictures Hub gives updates on pictures posted by your friends in any social network. Your personal albums are all visible under the albums section. This was a definite advantage for us since we stopped having back-ups or personal copies of photographs ever since Facebook came around. Having all our photographs on  our phone is a definite plus. Organising photographs is easy – you can filter by date, people or add pictures to a favourites’ list.


Ever had the problem of having multiple calendars – one for your office meetings, one for personal appointments, one for birthdays from Facebook and so on? The built-in Calendar app integrates all your calendars so that you will never again miss an appointment or a birthday.

The icing on the cake – Microsoft Office



Create a Word document, a presentation for tomorrow’s meeting, tabulate your bills in an excel sheet and share it over email or simply store it on SkyDrive to be accessed at leisure on your other devices. Need we say more?

All this is just the tip of the iceberg. The Windows Phone offers a lot more in terms of easy usability and social networking. Very different from the iPhone or Android phones, the Windows Phone is a pleasant change in the age of clutter and too many apps. Coupled with the refreshing live tiles UI, the Windows Phone is here to stay.

By: Jayashree Bhat

Image courtesy: http://www.microsoft.com

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Path – the next big social networking app?


Have you heard your friends raving about Path lately? A lot of us probably have. The idea of this social networking app is to help people maintain a journal or what you call a “Path” to your life. Launched in November 2010, The Company is headquartered in downtown San Francisco. Path has grown to include over two million people sharing life with close friends and family all over the world.

Path at present is available only for iPhone and Android users and they have the option of integrating it with Facebook. There is something about this lightweight social networking app that some handlers quote as a reason to use over Facebook and that’s – privacy.

Path is a very private space where your numbers of connections are restricted to 150 as against having close to 500+ on a networking site like Facebook. The idea is to keep ‘real connections’ and people who actually care about your photos, events and posts. That’s why some claim that Path is a much more elegant way of keeping track of those closest friends when compared to Facebook.


There’s no denial that Path has an absolutely dazzling interface and many users say it’s extremely easy to use. When you pull down on the screen, it will show you what time each ‘moment’ (Path’s version of post) went live with a little clock on the top right.

It definitely has one of the slickest app experiences on the iPhone. Everything feels seamless. Each image has stunning resolution for the tiny screen on your iPhone and shines. You don’t have to jump to a full screen to enjoy each photo — it’s good enough to just view them in the timeline and also has a built-in variation of Instagram.

With all these great features and more, is Path on it’s way to becoming the next big social media app to watch out for?

-Suruchi & Naimeesha

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