The online mattress brand Casper has emerged over the last two years as a force in social media marketing, disrupting the department store mattress racket and building its success on an unlikely target market. Casper’s novel approach bears examination; their path to market, product development, and audience outreach each contain valuable lessons for today’s entrepreneurs. Continue Reading
For almost all of us, the “online” experience has shifted. The days of dial-up and even high-speed modems have clearly passed, and now Google has come to our fingertips. Emails and queries are now conducted from trains or buses or sidewalks instead of behind bulky desktops. According to an articled published by Pew Media in April of 2015,
“Today nearly two-thirds of Americans own a smartphone, and 19 percent of Americans rely to some degree on a smartphone for accessing online services and information and for staying connected to the world around them—either because they lack broadband at home or because they have few options for online access other than their cell phone.”
So, while mentions of “online” or “browsing” might still evoke images of a person saddled behind a desk punching keys into computer, the reality is much more mobile.
The link below shows the Inauguration of President Obama in unbelievable detail. The image is a 1474 megapixel photo of the inauguration built from more than 200 photos. The navigation tools allow you to zoom in on snoozing Justices and pick out details of tie pins.
Ever wonder how to…
– Become a ninja?
– Run for office?
– Swing dance?
– Write Chinese characters?
According to a New York Times article , investors are betting tens of millions of dollars on Internet start-up companies like ExpertVillage and WonderHowTo that you want to know how to do those things. These companies are putting how-to content online.
And, it’s not just silly stuff. You can view videos about how to repair a pool cleaner by a pool store manager, how to use a miter saw from a custom home builder, how to light your home exterior from a lighting designer at a residential spaces company, or how to improve employee performance from a professional training expert.
What is your expertise? Why not make your own how-to video that positions you as the expert in your field? Put it online, send links of it to your customers and prospects, or send it to media outlets to showcase your availability as an expert spokesperson.
I recently heard Michael Smith, the futurist-in-residence for the New York Times, speak.
He posed a great question when he asked, "what will follow the laptop?" And, he shared some of the product concepts that he had seen.
I thought of Michael Smith’s presentation when a friend sent me an LA Times article on text messaging in China.
Interestingly, China is now the world’s largest mobile phone market. 455 million cellphone users exchange 33 billion short messages each month.
The LA Times explained that, "China’s mania for messaging – particularly mobile messaging – is largely a product of how technology developed (in China). Like other emerging global markets, rural regions of China lacked phones or television as recently as two decades ago. The country modernized just as mobile technology was broadly accessible throughout the world."
In effect, China skipped the land line, the answering machine, the fax machine, the desktop and the laptop.
So, if we want to know what follows the laptop, maybe China can provide a model of what behaviors might be like if we start over fresh.