Competition growing in the job market?

Job competition is reported to be growing exponentially, but not it the way the you might think.

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Source: http://www.abc.net.au

The internet is over flowing with articles the warn us of the rising presence of artificial intelligence, however, it is not all expressed in a positive light. There is no denying the fact the technology has done wonders for humans – not to mention making life more easy, efficient and entertaining. But where to from there? It sometimes feels as though technology has peaked and filled all the crevices in our lives.

However, a great deal of individuals have suspected that the future technology beholds is detrimental to humans – that technology will become so advanced that artificial intelligence will take the role of humans in the labour force. People are beginning to fear that artificial intelligence will assume our roles in the job market, essentially making humans obsolete.

One major U.S retailer is challenging this notion. American grocer ‘Walmart’ has introduced robots into 50 of its stores. Rather than replace workers, these robots have formed part of the team. There are still people at the checkouts, still people stocking the shelves, people at the information desks and managers running the show…

So, what exactly are these robots doing?

Rather than replace the job of a worker, Walmart has introduced these robots to assist in increasing workers efficiency and relieve them of tedious work, allowing them more time to interact with customers. The robots are set to wander each of the aisles in the Walmart stores, scanning the shelves for errors, and alerting staff of incorrect prices, out of stock items, incorrect labels and returning items to their correct spots.

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Source: http://www.alphr.com

This has been reported to be a great success thus far, largely attributed to the robot’s ability to assess shelves at a quicker speed than humans.

With Walmart providing a fresh perspective on artificial intelligence in the workplace, perhaps there is hope yet for the future of employment and technology.

Besides, with robots picking up our slack, who says we can’t all get along? Its all optimism for here.

 

Thanks for reading! What do you think about sharing your workplace with a robot? Do you have a optimistic outlook as I do, or are you preceding with caution? As always, I’d love to hear your opinions! ❤

To watch Walmart’s robot in action:

 

To read more:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-09/artificial-intelligence-automation-jobs-of-the-future/8786962

https://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2017/12/18/artificial-intelligence-will-change-the-job-landscape-forever-heres-how-to-prepare/#75bb489c27f4

http://www.alphr.com/the-future/1008909/walmart-robot-workers

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In the spirit of marketing

As a student studying marketing, with hopes of working in the industry in the near future, I endeavoured to explore a little bit more on the subject beyond textbooks and social media marketing. With this is mind, I sought out any company which uses consumer insights, participation and reviews to market and evaluate brands. This lead me to an Australian in-home marketing business called ‘Black Box’.

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Source: http://www.blackboxau.com

The basic idea of Black Box is that eligible participants receive a series of items to try out and provide feedback on. To be eligible, participants must make an account on the Black Box website and complete a profile on themselves. If you’re thinking of signing up, I’ll give you a heads up that the profile questions are long and diverse. The purpose of this is for participants to receive product campaigns that are relevant them, in order to provide meaningful feedback and reviews.

The profile questions include household income bracket, ethnicity, relationship status, mobile phone provider, energy types + provider, home ownership status, car ownership status, pet ownership + pet food purchase, retailers frequented in the last 3 months, diet, interests, lifestyle, cinemas frequented, preferred alcoholic beverages, home appliances, hair care used, skin type, insurance, and more.

So the number of questions is pretty intense, but so worth it in my opinion. If you’re eligible for their current product campaign, you receive a package sent to your home with a number of full sized products to try out.

The picture below is everything I received in my Black Box.

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So, how is this beneficial for the brands involved?

The main marketing element of this is the obligatory feedback survey that needs to be completed upon receiving the Black Box. While the questions slightly differ among each product, they are generally on whether you’ve heard of the product before, how satisfied you were, if you would recommend it to a friend and how you think it compares to other products in that market.

One thing this company does well is increasing brand awareness. Of the eleven products I was sent, I was only familiar with two – the Twinings tea and the Fairy dishwasher tablets. After trying all of the items with my family, we have already gone out and purchased two of the items that we tried in the box. I’ve pretty much become putty in the hands of marketers everywhere.

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Source: BlackBox – Facebook

While it may not seem like it yet, Black Box also encourage participants to give the brands included a leg up in digital marketing. To increase your chances of receiving another Black Box, and be in the running for some cash prize competitions, Black Box encourage participants to upload pictures on their social media of the products which they liked and would purchase in the future. So, as well as providing some in depth feedback to the brands involved with Black Box, they also benefit from increased exposure and positive word of mouth. I have to say, this is a pretty smart move since consumers are becoming less influenced by traditional marketing efforts and more receptive to peer feedback and positive/negative word of mouth.

As always, I’d love to hear from you! Have you ever tried anything like this? Do you think it is actually useful to the participating brands, or just a huge expense? Let me know in the comments ❤

It is, it isn’t. It is, it isn’t.

I took on the challenge of googling ‘is SEO dead?’ To save you from disappointment, I’m here to tell you that you wont find a straight forward, clear cut answer. The search result produced a plethora of articles that argued yes, no, and almost everything in between.

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Source: PPL Labs

One article suggests search engine optimisation is not dead, but instead, that SEO is more important now than ever. Further, it claims that SEO is still an integral part of a businesses efforts for digital marketing, and the SEO and high quality content must exist equally for a business to differentiate themselves in search results.

Some justifications for why SEO is still relevant for web visibility:

  • Search engines are improving

Unlike years passed, Google’s algorithm has evolved to dismiss SEO practices that are deceptive. These are ‘black hat techniques’, which attempt to trick search engines and artificially shift themselves higher in search engine rankings. New and improved algorithms now penalise websites which are involved nefarious web activity, such as key word stuffing. Engines such as Google have done this to provides users with the best and accurate search results, making high quality content paramount and ‘white hat techniques’ mandatory.

  • SEO is the key to success on mobile

As more internet search is being conducted on mobile, Google is implementing penalties for websites which do not have a mobile friendly version or do not have a good one. To be located in Googles search results, websites are required to meet these mobile compatible standards. It is advantageous for companies to optimise mobile websites to load quicker, as this improves the website ranking for mobile.

Another article identifies seven Search Engine Optimisation opportunities for 2018. One such opportunity is in voice search.

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Source: Search Engine People

Voice search as a whole is taking off rapidly, initially with Siri, and now with Google Home and Amazon Echo that have taken voice search from a purely mobile platform to an in-home assistant. As voice search accuracy improves – with only a 5.1% reported error rate, voices search appears to be reasonable competition for standard search. According to Google, mobile queries through voice account for 20% of searches, and this is estimated to account for up to 50% of searches in the next three years.

While I’ve delved into the ‘it isn’t’ side of the death of SEO debate, there is plenty of views on why SEO is dead. Have you investigated any of these?

Let me know your views and findings on Search Engine Optimisation in the comments! Happy reading 😊

 

For more on SEO:

https://dynomapper.com/blog/21-sitemaps-and-seo/192-it-s-2018-and-seo-is-dead-again

https://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/7-top-seo-opportunities-2018.html

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/research/blog/microsoft-researchers-achieve-new-conversational-speech-recognition-milestone/

 

Geofencing: endless possibilities

More than 3 billion people currently own a smartphone, and as this number has grown, so has the importance of mobile advertising. The Australian online advertising expenditure reached $7.6 billion in 2017, and mobile advertising accounted for 50% of the advertising spend.

A method of mobile advertising which is becoming more popular is geofencing. Geofencing develops a virtual boundary around a location to enable a business to advertise directly to potential customers that are in a specific geographic radius. Geofencing works through GPS and radio frequency identification to define this boundary. Once this boundary is established, text messages, emails and app notifications can be sent by an administrator when a mobile enters the given area.

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Image source: High Education Marketing

Research has suggested that the effectiveness of geofenced promotions is dependent on factors of distance and time. This means that consumers must have sufficient time to respond to the promotional messaged that is relayed given the distance from the promoted venue. However, too much time and distance may reduce response rates.

While geofencing can be effective in altering customers of current sales, therefore encouraging them to enter the shop and make a purchase, geofencing can also be used in less conventional ways.

Live nation – the concert and events producer – has used geofencing to connect fans to their favourite artists through social media. Live Nation have created a product called Showbook, whereby the different tour locations of an artist are geofenced, and fan social media content is aggregated. This enables users to search for shows in their area, while Showbook accumulates concert photos and videos that fans have posted on different social media platforms. Thus, the Showbook acts as a digital photo album of all the events in that tour.

 

So as we’ve seen, there are many ways geofencing can be used, not just in the conventional marketing approach. Where do you see geofencing going? Have you ever experienced it? Let me know if the comments below! 🙂

To read more:

Business Source Complete: Increasing the Effectiveness of Mobile Advertising by Using Contextual Information

http://www.geomarketing.com/geomarketing-101-what-is-geofencing

http://www.geomarketing.com/geo-fencing-the-amphitheater

The next big thing?

It looks like the online shopping landscape is changing, and I have to say, I’m not exactly impressed. To be fair, the world of retail, digital marketing and e-commerce has evolved rapidly over the last few years. And for some of us out there, we’re often wondering ‘what next?’

Being the shopping addict that I am, I shopped on my fair share of online stores. So, if you’re anything like me, you that this means your inbox is FULL of promotional emails, discount codes and sneak peaks at new releases.

 

But the other day, I got a promotional email that was fairly unlike the ones I’d gotten before. The store had launched an app. For a moment, I was excited. I could vividly imagine searching for my next ~**fabulous**~ outfit through a fun, new app.

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Source: my image

It was thirty seconds later that I knew I wouldn’t be using it. Why? It is no different than their standard online store. Now that online retailers have made their websites compatible for smart phones, we can have our complete shopping experience from the web browser.

Lets go through a list. Does the website…

  • Allow me to make an account and stay logged in? Check.
  • Save items that I may want to look back on later? Check.
  • Remember my payment preferences? Check.
  • Take up storage on my phone? …No, and thank goodness for that.

It just so happens that I’m not the only one with this impassive view. In a study done by Business Insider Intelligence, it was found that 53% of worldwide shoppers prefer using the retailers mobile website; with 19% responding that they shop with multiple retailers, therefore do not want to download apps for each of them.

Have any of you downloaded a retailer’s app? If you have, what do you make of the experience? And if you haven’t, why not? I’d love to get your perspective on this topic 😊

 

To read more:

http://www.businessinsider.com/shopping-app-usage-is-rising-but-retailers-still-have-a-glaring-problem-2016-6/?r=AU&IR=T

“Use my code for 10% off!!”

If you watch any successful media influencer on YouTube, you’ve probably noticed that they collaborate with many brands. More than just using the brands products, they also offer a discount code for viewers to use on the brands website.

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Source: mecca.com.au

While I was always aware of influencers using affiliate codes, I never thought much of it until I started this unit. Now that I know more about digital marketing, I understand why this is such a successful form of revenue for online retailers.

In the week five lesson for digital marketing we had a look at digital business models and the different revenue models that exist online. The different models include advertising, subscription, transaction fees, sales and affiliate. The affiliate model is a model of internet revenue whereby an organisation pays a fee or shares their revenue with people who refer customers to them. The model works via coded links. As people use a retailers site through these links, the number of uses are tracked, as well as the sales which are completed through these links.

Through further research I discovered that there is a variety of payment methods involved with the affiliate model, these include:

  • Pay per click: the affiliate is paid each time the affiliate link is clicked
  • Pay per impression: the affiliate is paid each time someone lands on the retailer’s website
  • Pay per lead: the affiliate is paid each time someone clicks on the affiliate link and takes an action (such as subscribing to their email list)
  • Pay per sales: the affiliate is paid when a sale is made; the affiliate is then paid a percentage of the cost of that sale

The pay per sale is probably the methods which we are most aware of; whereby we enter a code in the final checkout stage of the payment.

But how likely is it that you’re going to make a purchase through an affiliate link, when it feels like the affiliate themselves are forcing the brand down your throat? While I understand that part of the agreement the affiliate has with the brand is to regularly mention discount codes and offers, there comes a point where its just too much!

Along with comments of “use my code!!!” getting annoying, I think that affiliates over saturating views/readers with promotional messages can be harmful in other ways. Once a consumer knows that the affiliate has a personal stake in you making a purchase, their good reviews and hyping of products can grow to seem insincere.

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Source: teenvogue.com

A great example of this is beauty influencers on YouTube, namely James Charles. James Charles is a social media superstar who is also an affiliate of makeup brand Morphe. Viewers have been so bombarded with encouragement from him to use his discount code that they’ve made a video compilation of him telling viewers to use his discount at the checkouts of various makeup brands.

Although the affiliate model of internet revenue can be beneficial to some degree, brands and affiliates alike should be conscious of how much promotion they are aiming towards consumers. After all, how many of you would use affiliate links if you felt that the affiliate had a strong bias with minimal sincerity?

To read more:

https://pragmaticmarketing.com/resources/articles/the-truth-about-affiliate-revenue

http://www.zdnet.com/article/how-businesses-can-use-affiliate-marketing-to-boost-revenue-generation/

Targeted advertising: pointless or profitable?

Have you ever searched through an online store and decided against buying something, only to have that very same item advertised to you on Facebook? This is targeted advertising.

Targeted advertising is a method of marketing whereby mobile/ online activity is tracked, and advertisements are placed to reach customers based on webpage history, product purchase history and other behavioural variables.

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Source: hurrdat.com

Behavioural targeting is the most common targeting method used to advertise to consumers. Sites visited, content viewed and length of time on webpages are anonymously tracked to predict online behaviour and provide consumers with more relevant advertising. But how effective is it?

In a recent survey by Razorfish and Adobe, it was found that targeted advertisements are almost twice as effective as nontargeted ads. By contrast, 87% of respondents felt that having their online behaviour tracked was an invasion of their privacy, and that if they could “click on a ‘do not track’ button to prevent browsers from capturing online searching and purchasing history” they would do so.

Despite most consumers not wanting their activity tracked, multiple studies have shown that targeted advertising is effective. In a research study by the Journal of Consumer Research, it was deducted that targeted ads do not only make consumers more likely to complete purchases, but they can also change how they perceive themselves.

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The circled advertisement is an example of behavioural targeting that i experienced myself

The research explored whether “behaviourally targeted ads have unique psychological consequences that can help make them more effective than ads that rely on traditional demographic or psychographic targeting”. In one study, it was found that participants were more inclined to purchase a coupon for a restaurant marketed as being ‘sophisticated’ when they thought that the advertisement had been targeted to them based on other sites they had visited, rather than an advertisement that was not targeted at all. This is because the participants perceived the targeted ads as a reflection of their own characteristics, ultimately encouraging them to make the purchase which made a positive testament to their personality. Therefore, the study found that behavioural targeting, over standard targeting, increases consumer interest in products or services.

The message to marketers out there: transparency is vital for effective behaviourally targeted marketing. The research undertaken by the Journal of Consumer Research indicated that the successful outcome of these targeted ads occurs on that basis that the consumer is aware when the advertisement is behaviourally targeted.

Have you ever experienced behavioural targeting?? Let me know in the comments!

To read more:

http://blog.digitalmarketing.ac.in/2014/04/targeted-advertising.html

http://www.cmo.com/features/articles/2014/7/15/mind_blowing_stats_ad_targeting.html#gs.eCZZM8w

https://hbr.org/2016/04/targeted-ads-dont-just-make-you-more-likely-to-buy-they-can-change-how-you-think-about-yourself