Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Monday, August 29, 2011
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Earlier this summer, we attended a party for a stealth startup that Peter Thiel backed.
Today, we can finally announce what the startup is, and why we're bullish on it.
Booktracks is a startup that could transform your reading experience forever. Like movies have soundtracks, now books can have soundtracks.
"It's difficult to imagine a movie with no soundtrack. Yet, until today, the technology did not exist to synchronize music and sound within an e-book," Paul Cameron, Booktrack's co-founder and CEO says.
"Tens of millions of commuters around the world listen to a playlist that's disconnected from what they're reading—perhaps a sad song with an upbeat story. Now they can replicate a movie-like sound experience and fundamentally transform their reading experience."
When we first heard the idea, we were skeptical. Many people find listening to music distracting when reading. And everyone reads at different speeds, so it's impossible for one track to cater to everyone.
Not so, we were told. You have to try it to believe it.
So we went off in a corner of the party, put on some headphones, and read the first few pages of Da Vinci Code. Immediately, music started to play appropriately with the words. Right as we read a line about a door slamming shut, we heard the exact same sound.
We tried reading at different speeds to trick the book soundtrack. It didn't work. It seemed to hover within a few seconds of the lines we were reading, and the track followed us with every page turn.
Some Booktracks are already available in the App Store. In the coming weeks and months, Booktrack will also create editions of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Tale of Peter Rabbit, Peter Pan, The Three Musketeers, Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, Romeo and Juliet and more.
Booktracks has a number of strategic partners behind it already, including major music company Sony/ATV, which will be making tracks for books and selling them much like iTunes would sell a song in the bookstore. It also has HarperCollins on board.
The founder of Booktracks is a Kiwi, Paul Cameron. Derek Handley, an entrepreneur who sold his company to Meredith Corporation, is the Chairman. Peter Thiel's right hand man, Andrew McCormack, led the startup's investment.
The startup is hosting a launch party tonight with celebrities like Georgina Chapman, James Frey, Courtney Love, Paul Haggis, Salman Rushdie, and Harvey Weinstein.
For more cool NYC startups, check out The 25 Hot NYC Startups You Need To Watch >>
Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/booktracks-2011-8#ixzz1W1jRYjGo
Monday, August 22, 2011
New research by Web Liquid and RTW/US amongst 237 marketing executives in middle-large and large companies (revenue > $51MM), has shown that just 24% of the interviewed found the Social Media monitoring tools they used were “Very Valuable”. Digital marketers who use paid Social Media monitoring solutions are twice as likely to be "extremely satisfied" as those who use a free solution, according to the study.
The results were surprising in a couple of ways:
What tools are you using for Social Media monitoring
Almost half of the organizations are still using Google Alerts. This is surprising when comparing it with the type of organizations and its yearly revenue. Besides this result, one on five is not even monitoring Social Media. The usage of free tools/Google Alerts could be part of the dissatisfaction.
First of all Google Alerts is far from complete in terms of returned results, secondly it’s intensive manual labor to extract intelligence from it to be really efficient and effective.
The next results show that the intelligence that is extracted is mainly tactical and regarding communications:
The purposes of the intelligence are limited, on tactical marketing level and within the fields of communications. This whilst it has much more applications, think of Social Media Research, which departments have challenges and/or chances, understanding ROI, spotting unmet needs and pinpointing the innovators and much more.
Not only can Social Media inform Communication Strategy as mentioned in the chart, it can also inform “higher” level strategies because Social Media data is full of customer insights, market- and competitive intelligence. Fast iterative adjustments to strategy are made possible.
The limited scope and tactical application could be another part of the dissatisfaction.
Besides the aforementioned limitations and dissatisfaction, there’s a third aspect that has impact on the efficiency and effectiveness of Social Media tools/data. It’s being described by the concept of Cooperative Intelligence:
Many companies think they are conducting real-time competitive intelligence since they monitor the competitive environment continuously on the Internet and increasingly through social media such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook as well as industry specific forums or social networks like Ning. While monitoring is the foundation of real-time competitive intelligence, it is not actionable. The action you take in real-time will give you a competitive advantage. As David Meerman Scott said at our AIIP conference, “Speed and agility bring competitive advantage…Act now before the window of opportunity vanishes.”
However, CI managers can inform people in our companies in real-time, and in areas where we have more knowledge, make recommendations for action. The balancing act in our job is to offer cooperative intelligence: don’t inundate people with too much information, just what you know is important to them.
In relation to the Social Media research, the CI manager can be replaced by anyone who’s responsible for Social Media within the organization. Efficient workflow of the relevant information to the correct person/department is key for Social Media intelligence to be effective. If this doesn’t happen, the “speed and agility” where Meerman Scott talks about, disappears.
The organizational pillars
The three above mentioned reasons for dissatisfaction can be placed within the three organizational pillars: Technology, Processes and People.
If there’s not a strategy for Social Media incorporation within the organization, the Social Media monitoring tools (Technology), purposes of Social Media intelligence (People) and speed of intelligence (Processes) can be ineffective resulting in disappointing Social Media results.
Social Media hasn’t got a one-size-fits-all solution, this counts for monitoring tools as well.
Gianluigi Cuccureddu is Managing Partner at the 90:10 Group.
Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/social-media-intelligence-not-utilized-to-the-fullest-competitive-advantages-diminishes-2011-8#ixzz1VlNi1J7o