Seeing Taiwan from abroad

I lived in lovely Taiwan for almost 30 years. Now, aged 50, I am retired from a career as an academic, diplomat and marketer and work as an educator and consultant for blockchain and smart tech solutions. For family reasons I have returned to my ancestral home in Europe. Expat privileges (and the unavoidable whiteContinue reading “Seeing Taiwan from abroad”

Social Media is Killing Us

No this is not an attention-grabbing headline. This is the result of what I have observed over the past 24 months. Social media is killing our social abilities, our social interaction, our human existence itself. Last week I dined at a fairly normal restaurant in the heart of Hong Kong, a city fighting at theContinue reading “Social Media is Killing Us”

The 7 Deadly Sins of Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is on the rise. People believe messages from experts in various fields from blockchain, IoT, to marketing and automation, especially if these experts are not directly affiliated with a particular brand. Follow the author on LinkedIn Influencer marketing is growing on all platforms, be it Twitter, LinkedIn, Medium, Reddit, Facebook, or even through individualContinue reading “The 7 Deadly Sins of Influencer Marketing”

How to Design Value Propositions in B2B Marketing

This article has been adapted from a two-part post by @claudiomkd which you can find here:  Part1 and here: Part2   Reducing the sales cycle with laser-focused value propositions If one thing I learned about B2B markets during my career is that business-to-business models, although very monetarily rewarding, can pose two huge challenges for sales & marketingContinue reading “How to Design Value Propositions in B2B Marketing”

Word of the Year: Instagrammable

Every year has its buzzwords and neologisms. May I suggest that for 2018 we choose something that is both. My vote goes to “instagrammable”. The first time I heard it was from a food blogger friend, who told me that the “instagrammability” of food was one part of how she chose her venues. As inContinue reading “Word of the Year: Instagrammable”

Why I Never Use TripAdvisor – Or: The Curse of Reviews

Reviews, even with the best intentions, seldom help brands and businesses. This sounds heretical, but let me explain. TripAdvisor is an amazing site. In a sense, together with the reviews on Amazon, and any other site that uses a rating system, it embodies the essence of the digital economy: easy access to other people’s opinionsContinue reading “Why I Never Use TripAdvisor – Or: The Curse of Reviews”

Micro-Influencer Marketing: The Ins and Outs

Influencer marketing is big these days, but not everyone can afford to pay celebrities and online megastars with millions of followers. For some brands, micro influencers will be much more realistic and even powerful than big names. The key to influencer marketing is authenticity. I covered this here: Word-of-Mouth Marketing: The Land that Strategy Forgot This isContinue reading “Micro-Influencer Marketing: The Ins and Outs”

Word-of-Mouth Marketing: The Land that Strategy Forgot

Word of mouth is by any measure the best form of marketing. Recommendations from friends, colleagues, and even strangers lend credibility and are far more cost-effective than tedious advertising. This is increasingly true as younger generations or ‘digital natives’ are becoming increasingly impervious to advertising. In a digital world, word of mouth takes on aContinue reading “Word-of-Mouth Marketing: The Land that Strategy Forgot”

6 Fairy Tales About Digital Marketing

Thousands upon thousands of digital marketing agencies and talented individuals around the world are offering advice on digital marketing. Some offer genuine insight about the latest strategies, others are merely repeating stuff they found on the net. Some get paid by companies to promote specific products instead of offering real solutions for your problems. AlmostContinue reading “6 Fairy Tales About Digital Marketing”

Curiosity Marketing: The Ideal Solution for Digital Natives

We are drowning in a flood of information, on our desktops, our mobile devices, our televisions; from product videos to long-form written content, from Instagram images to LinkedIn posts. Every avenue of marketing has been deployed, from aggressive advertising, email, to inbound strategies, podcasts, and webinars. And yet, marketers continue to come up with newContinue reading “Curiosity Marketing: The Ideal Solution for Digital Natives”

The Bounce Rate: When It Matters, and When it Doesn’t

Bounce rate (sometimes confused with exit rate) is an Internet marketing term used in web traffic analysis. It represents the percentage of visitors who enter the site and then leave (“bounce“) rather than continuing on to view other pages within the same site. Whether you are using ads or inbound marketing strategies, the bounce rate tells you aContinue reading “The Bounce Rate: When It Matters, and When it Doesn’t”

Busy Like a Bee: 3 Simple Ways to Improve Conversion Rates

Not a week goes by that I don’t get a call from an online business asking why their sales are going down, why their site isn’t taking off, why nobody is subscribing to their product demo, what they could do to improve online sales, and so forth. Sometimes the flaws are obvious, but more oftenContinue reading “Busy Like a Bee: 3 Simple Ways to Improve Conversion Rates”

The Importance of Customer Feedback and What to Do With It

Getting feedback is the right thing to do, everybody can agree on that. At every workshop I have ever conducted, 100% of participants agreed that customer feedback is essential. In reality, though, very few companies solicit feedback, and even fewer actually use it. The feedback you don’t listen to isn’t feedback, it’s a wasted opportunity.Continue reading “The Importance of Customer Feedback and What to Do With It”

Why You Should Always Put Your Retail Strategy First

Parts of the world, especially in Asia, are in a startup frenzy. Not a week goes by without a new startup looking for branding and marketing advice. Because this is Asia, which has a long history of making things and the most brilliant engineers in the world, most of these startups make hardware. Established companiesContinue reading “Why You Should Always Put Your Retail Strategy First”

Is Digital Advertising the Biggest Fraud in History?

Enron is commonly referred to as the biggest fraud ever, costing investors over 70 billion USD. Perhaps Lehman Brothers did even more damage. Or Bernie Madoff. It’s hard to say. But without a doubt, we do now have a new candidate, and it’s not a company or a person. It’s an industry; digital advertising. ListenContinue reading “Is Digital Advertising the Biggest Fraud in History?”

The Intersection of Personal and Corporate Brand

The Internet and social media, in particular, have turned the world into a global marketplace for attention. People, products, companies, political parties, NGOs and governments all need to present a “digital image”. How to be noticed and perceived positively in the digital space is a tedious and often painful exercise in self-promotion. It can alsoContinue reading “The Intersection of Personal and Corporate Brand”

Why B2B Companies Need to Embrace Millennials

As a marketer, I work mostly with big B2B companies in the semiconductor, electronics, pharmaceutical, and machinery sector. These are conservative industries with little need for hype – on the contrary. Fluff pieces, unrealistic promises, and sensational advertising tactics harm these companies more than help them. So at first glance, we have very little toContinue reading “Why B2B Companies Need to Embrace Millennials”

There Is No Such Thing As “Going Viral”

Social media marketing has a holy grail, and it is called “going viral”. Unfortunately, “virality” is largely a myth. Nothing ever really goes “viral” by itself. Every now and then we come across content that “went viral”. It seems like millions of people discovered it, liked it, shared it, and we don’t know exactly how. It bestowsContinue reading “There Is No Such Thing As “Going Viral””

Employee Advocacy: The Key to Digital Marketing Success

One of the most overlooked tools in creating engagement and distributing your digital marketing content surely is employee advocacy. Yet even the marketing teams of very large corporations don’t make use of it. Have you ever wondered how a blog post by a 60’000 employee organization ends up having only 80 views? How is that even possible?Continue reading “Employee Advocacy: The Key to Digital Marketing Success”

Digital Transformation: How to Create an Intelligent Company

Companies are besieged by information and bedazzled by IT solutions. With the rapid advancements in information technology, high-speed Internet, mobile technology and artificial intelligence, we now have access to huge amounts of data about customers, their demographics, and their online behavior across all touch points. The advantage of access to so much information is notContinue reading “Digital Transformation: How to Create an Intelligent Company”