We live in a connected age, where we have the flexibility to move around without ever having to be disconnected from our gadgets and devices. This allows us the freedom to access information that matters to us, on the go. In essence what that means is that all our data exists on an interminable network of technologies, ranging from home appliances to cognitive devices.
A new decade is upon us, and while it’s nice to reminisce about all that we have accomplished in the past year and in the last decade, I prefer to look towards the future. There are undoubtedly lessons for us in the bygone years; but looking through the kaleidoscope of the past, it’s difficult to predict what the future of marketing will look like five, or ten years down the line. A new wave of marketing reforms and technologies could sweep us off our feet, and compel us to adapt and adopt quickly, or force us to perish trying. Okay, that sounded a bit too ominous, but you catch my drift, don’t you?
According to PwC, the e-commerce industry in India is pegged to grow to 21.3 billion USD by the end of 2015, where as the e-tail sector would contribute 6 billion USD. Unarguably, India is in the midst of an e-commerce boom, which is only set to surge further as more and more homes have access to the internet and to smartphones. While debates around internet penetration, smartphone adoption, the e-commerce bubble, offline vs. online, valuations etc. lingers on, the hyper-local segment in India has been hotting-up. The emergence of hyper-local startups like Jugnoo, Zopper, Grofers and PepperTap, hasn’t just managed to augment the supply chain and boost delivery networks, they’ve also put the offline vs. online debate to rest by marrying the both, to provide customers the best of both worlds.
Zomato, the India-based global restaurant search and discovery service, has been on an acquisition spree lately, in a bid to help the brand foray into new markets, and offer a comprehensive suite of restaurant services including discovery, online ordering, delivery, table reservations and payments, to its customers. We got talking with Zomato’s India Business Head for Online Ordering, Mukund Kulashekaran, who tells us why the brand decided to enter the online ordering space and also reveals the company’s plans to enter into new markets, and launch new services.
Most healthcare institutions have adopted the third wave of IT, which has allowed them to digitize their enterprise – including channels, processes and care-coordination initiatives. Having said that, most of them are still struggling to address patients’ challenges like burgeoning costs, inadequate access to healthcare services, and poor care quality. On the one hand you have digital-savvy customers who demand access to cutting-edge solutions and services, and on the other, you have patients who cannot afford even the most basic healthcare services. The task is cut out for healthcare institutions – providers have to modernize and refresh their IT infrastructure, and at the same time, ensure that they leverage digital technologies to make healthcare affordable to all.
Google did something on September 1st which was unexpected, but not surprising – they remodeled their logo. Again. But this time, they may have actually got it right, despite all the flak from so-called ‘design experts’ who have called the new logo amateurish and unimaginative. It’s no secret that Google has had some trouble finding a logo they actually liked – which made them rejig the color-palette on numerous occasions. When you use primary colors in your logo, there’s a 50 – 50 chance, that it could look repulsive; add to that an ugly looking font, and your logo is the Frankenstein of the design world. But with the new custom geometric sans-serif typeface (called Product Sans) and better color saturation, the new Google logo looks quite at home in the 21st century.
The retail industry is one of the pioneers in the IoT (Internet of Things) space and it is constantly looking to leverage technologies like mobile, cloud, RFID, beacons etc. to deliver Connected Retail services and better shopping experiences to its customers. Here’s a look at some of the key trends helping fortify the Connected Retail agenda.
Ghost Written Post
In my last post, I talked about how mobile payments and digital wallets are fast capturing the imagination of consumers worldwide. While researching for that post, I stumbled upon quite a few references to Starbucks and their innovative mobile strategies, which led me to read-up on how Starbucks became a digital leader. And that’s how I got around to writing this post, where I’ve highlighted some of the innovative consumer-driven digital initiatives from the Starbucks mobile strategy.
Ghost Written Post
We have surely come a long way from those good old days when we carried around wallets the size of a giant hamster. I could barely ever get mine to fit into my back pocket. It had everything that I’d ever need and mostly junk I’d never use – some cash, coins, my personal calendar, bus tickets, movie tickets from a year ago, scraps of paper with names and numbers of people I’d never meet again, business cards, gift coupons and even lottery tickets. In short, I was a George Costanza. But honestly, I just liked the idea of carrying around a wallet; it made me feel like a grown man.
Retailers are beginning to take a shine to retail cloud solutions that would enable them to address customer expectations and help them optimize their business operations. And rightly so, because retail businesses demand swiftness and precision, in order to manage distribution and replenishment of products across store-shelves, which in turn enables flawless retail execution and monitoring. But that’s not all; the proliferation of omni-channel retailing has also played a significant role in compelling retailers to address their legacy requirements using heavy-weight technologies such as cloud – which delivers lower infrastructure costs and improved productivity. However, not all retailers are singing hallelujah just as yet; there are apprehensions w.r.t security, accessibility, dependencies and outages among other things.