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Customer experiences, communications, and analytics

three epicenters of innovation in modern marketing
I recently discovered Scott Brinker’s Chief Marketing Technologist blog and recommend it as a useful resource for marketers. The Venn diagram above is from a recent post, 3 epicenters of innovation in modern marketing. It was the Venn diagram that first grabbed my attention because I love Venn diagrams as a communication tool, it reminded me of another Venn diagram well-received at the recent Gilbane Conference, and most of the conference discussions map to someplace in the illustration.

As good as the graphic is on its own, you should read Scott’s post and see what he has to say about the customer experience “revolution”.

Lest you think Scott is a little too blithe in his acceptance of the role of big data, see his The big data bubble in marketing — but a bigger future, where the first half of the (fairly long) post talks about all the hype around big data. But you should read the full post because he is right on target in describing the role of big data in marketing innovation, and in his conclusion that data-driven organizations will need to make use of big data though these data-driven and data-savvy organizations will take some time to build.

So don’t let current real or perceived hype about the role of big data in marketing lead you to discount its importance – it’s a matter of when, not if. “When” is not easy to predict, but will certainly be different depending on an organizations’ resources and ability to deal with complexity, and organizational and infrastructure changes.

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HTML5 Definition Complete, W3C Moves to Interoperability Testing and Performance

HTML5_Logo_128The W3C announced today that the HTML5 definition is complete, and on schedule to be finalized in 2014. This is excellent news for the future of the open Web, that is, all of us. If you were involved in discussions about mobile development strategies at our recent conference you’ll want to check out all the details at http://dev.w3.org/html5/decision-policy/html5-2014-plan.

Moving right along, the HTML Working Group also published the first draft of HTML 5.1 so you can see a little further down the road for planning purposes. See http://www.w3.org/TR/2012/WD-html51-20121217/.

From the W3C newsletter…

W3C published today the complete definition of the “HTML5″ and “Canvas 2D” specifications. Though not yet W3C standards, these specifications are now feature complete, meaning businesses and developers have a stable target for implementation and planning. “As of today, businesses know what they can rely on for HTML5 in the coming years, and what their customers will demand,” said Jeff Jaffe, W3C CEO. HTML5 is the cornerstone of the Open Web Platform, a full programming environment for cross-platform applications with access to device capabilities; video and animations; graphics; style, typography, and other tools for digital publishing; extensive network capabilities; and more.

To reduce browser fragmentation and extend implementations to the full range of tools that consume and produce HTML, W3C now embarks on the stage of W3C standardization devoted to interoperability and testing. W3C is on schedule to finalize the HTML5 standard in 2014. In parallel, the W3C community will continue its work on next generation HTML features, including extensions to complement built-in HTML5 accessibility, responsive images, and adaptive streaming.

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Gilbane Conference on Twitter

Gilbane Boston is still going on and you can follow it on Twitter at @gilbane or @gilbaneboston.

Somehow we ended up with four hashtags!

We do appreciate the enthusiasm. In approximate order of popularity at the moment they are:

#gilbane
#gilbane2012
#gilbane12
#gilbaneboston

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Successful Deployment of Systems of Engagement: Making it Work with the Team That Will Make it Work

Gilbane Conference Workshop: Successful Deployment of Systems of Engagement: Making it Work with the Team That Will Make it Work

Instructors: Scott Liewehr, President and Principal Analyst & Rob Rose, Senior Analyst, Digital Clarity Group
November 27th, 2012, 1:00pm – 4:00pm, at the InterContinental Boston Waterfront

We’ve all heard that enterprise marketing technology tools are really only as good as they are well-implemented. So why is it that enterprises often place much more effort into selecting the tool than they do the team that will make it work for their unique needs? Even if the deployment will be performed by the internal technology team, enterprise business managers need to make sure that the team that is going to help them realize their objectives by implementing the Web Content Management (WCM), Social, Marketing Automation, Search, and Analytics systems is ready to facilitate the new world of constant change in strategic content and web engagement. This workshop will explore proven methodologies for translating business strategies into selection criteria for both technologies and the agencies and integrators that implement them. It will prepare participants to answer critical questions that will help them ensure their enterprise technologies are successful:

  • What does my organization need to be prepared for?
  • How should I determine the optimal solutions given the many options?
  • What are the best practices for finding the best team to carry out my strategy and implement my chosen technology(ies)?
  • What responsibilities do I have for making sure the team is successful, and how can I stack the deck in my favor?

We will explore all of this and more in an entertaining, informative and actionable workshop. Led by Digital Clarity Group’s Scott Liewehr and Robert Rose, attendees will leave this workshop much better equipped to make strategic decisions about how to select and work with the team that help fulfill their vision.

See the full pre-conference workshop schedule at Gilbane Boston, then Register.
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Social Media: Creating a Voice and Personality for Your Brand

Gilbane Conference Workshop: Social Media: Creating a Voice and Personality for Your Brand

Instructor: AJ Gerritson, Founding Partner & Social Media Strategist, 451 Marketing
November 27th, 2012 at the InterContinental Boston Waterfront

For consumers, brand interaction on social media platforms is no longer the exception, it’s the expectation. In order to stay relevant, companies must develop digital tactics that boost the brand’s overall communications strategies and marketing campaigns. When utilized effectively, social media marketing enhances your brand’s voice and personality, making you more approachable and transparent to your target audience. But, how can your company devise a social media strategy that entices audiences and encourages interaction? Which platforms make sense for your brand? How can you monitor the effectiveness of a social media campaign?

In this interactive session, 451 Marketing founding Partner and Social Media Strategist, AJ Gerritson, will outline the major social media platforms, strategic approaches, best practices, time commitment, and measurement tools and techniques necessary as part of an effective social media strategy. Using industry statistics and case studies, AJ will teach attendees how to structure a successful social media strategy that can be easily integrated into your brand’s existing communications campaigns.

See the full pre-conference workshop schedule at Gilbane Boston, then Register.
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W3C Web Platform Docs – a new resource for web developers

Web Platform.orgW3C announced Web Platform Docs, which promises to be a valuable new resource for web developers of all levels. Imagine a single site that you can depend on for up-to-date, accurate, and browser and device neutral answers and advice for both simple and complex questions. It is brand new and “alpha” but already useful. Below is info from their announcement and a short video. For those of us that prefer textual info see this blog post from Doug Schepers: http://blog.webplatform.org/2012/10/one-small-step/

W3C, in collaboration with Adobe, Facebook, Google, HP, Microsoft, Mozilla, Nokia, Opera, and others, announced today the alpha release of Web Platform Docs (docs.webplatform.org). This is a new community-driven site that aims to become a comprehensive and authoritative source for web developer documentation. With Web Platform Docs, web professionals will save time and resources by consulting with confidence a single site for current, cross-browser and cross-device coding best practices.

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Gilbane Boston Early Discount Deadline Extended

Gilbane Boston content management and technologies conference banner

 

Plan to be in Boston for the 9th annual Gilbane Boston Conference and you still have time to SAVE!

Save up to $400 for Three Days, Four Tracks, 45 Sessions & Labs, 6 Workshops with One Objective: to help you understand what technologies can and can’t do, what practices succeed or fail, and how to plan for the rapid changes in market and technology evolution.

Today, you need to be flexible, agile, and ready to incorporate web and multiple mobile platforms with different form factors and capabilities, and you need to combine engaging content and interfaces with small devices and big data – this is not the same challenge you had last year.

To help you keep pace and be able to cut through hype and make informed decisions we bring together a diverse audience of technologists, marketers, strategists, business managers and analysts to learn, share, and debate best practices and strategies. Our conferences have sessions designed for attendees in marketing, technology, business units, as well as analysts and consultants.

Just sign up by October 31st and use discount code GILBANE. Learn more http://gilbaneboston.com/conference_program.html

2012 Technology Showcase Hours
Wednesday, November 28: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Thursday, November 29: 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

See the conference program:
http://gilbaneboston.com/conference_program.html

See the current list of speakers:
http://gilbaneboston.com/speakers.html

See this year’s in-depth pre-conference workshops:
http://gilbaneboston.com/workshops.html

See the current list of Sponsors & Exhibitors:
http://gilbaneboston.com/exhibitors_sponsors.html

Sign-up today to make sure you receive your $200 discount! Just use discount code GILBANE

Or sign-up for your free Keynote and Technology Showcase Pass.

 

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So You Want to Build a Mobile Content App? or a Better App?

Gilbane Conference Workshop: So You Want to Build a Mobile Content App?

Instructor: Jonny Kaldor, Managing Director, Kaldor Group (creators of Pugpig)
November 27th, 2012 at the InterContinental Boston Waterfront

With the continuing and massive adoption of tablet devices, content owners have a dizzying myriad of ways to disseminate content to employees and customers alike in a way that is faster, broader, more engaging and more actionable than ever before. Business models for content owners are being revolutionised, and tablets are now offering a truly viable alternative to print. But it doesn’t stop there – whether you’re pushing content to consumers or disseminating information across your enterprise, you can reap tangible benefits from publishing on tablet devices. This session will dive into the key aspects of conceiving, designing, building and launching your mobile content app, whether you’re targeting your employees, clients or consumers. We’ll cover both the opportunities and the many pitfalls that you will encounter (and nimbly jump over) as you set off of your content app journey…

Key topics:

  • Where to start?
  • Translating print or web to mobile – it’s not so easy
  • Designing an engaging and really useful user experience
  • Avoiding building a whole new team to manage the mobile channel
  • Aligning your web and mobile strategy and operations
  • Webapp vs native vs hybrid – which should I go for?
  • Adaptive design / responsive design”
  • Business models that work
  • Making sense of multiple devices and marketplaces
  • Using the big players to your advantage (Apple, Google, MS, Amazon)
  • Keeping your users happy
See the full pre-conference workshop schedule at Gilbane Boston, then Register.
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Frank Gilbane on Gilbane Boston 2012

Frank Gilbane describes Gilbane Boston 2012 in a short off the cuff video after being caught walking by the studio. See the Gilbane Conference program.

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Why Big Data is important to Gilbane Conference attendees

If you think there is too much hype, and gratuitous use of the term, big data, you haven’t seen anything yet. But don’t make the mistake of confusing the hype with how fundamental and how transformational big data is and will certainly be. Just turn your hype filter to high and learn enough about it to make your own judgements about how it will affect your business and whether it is something you need to do something about now, or monitor for future planning.

As I said yesterday in a comment on a post by Sybase CTO Irfan Khan Gartner dead wrong about big data hype cycle (with a response from Gartner):

However Gartner’s Hype Cycle is interpreted I think it is safe to say that most, including many analysts, underestimate how fundamental and how far-reaching big data will be. How rapidly its use will evolve, and in which applications and industries first, is a more difficult and interesting discussion. The twin brakes of a shortage of qualified data scientist skills and the costs and complexities of IT infrastructure changes will surely slow things down and cause disillusionment. On the other hand we have all been surprised by how fast some other fundamental changes have ramped up, and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service) will certainly help accelerate things. There is also a lot more big data development and deployment activity going on than many realize – it is a competitive advantage after all.

There is also a third “brake” which is all the uncertainty around privacy issues. There is already a lot of consumer data that is not being fully used because of fear of customer backlash or new regulation and, one hopes, because of a degree of respect for consumer’s privacy.

Rob Rose expanded on some specific concerns of marketers in a recent post Big Data & Marketing – It’s A Trap!, including the lack of resources for interpreting even the current mostly website analytics data marketers already have. It’s true, and not just for smaller companies. In addition there are at least four requirements for making big data analytics accessible to marketers that are largely beyond the reach of most current organizations.

Partly to the rescue is Big Data as a Service BDaaS (one of the more fun-sounding acronyms). BDaaS is going to be a huge business. All the big technology infrastructure firms are getting involved and all the analytics vendors will all have cloud and big data services. There are also many new companies including some surprises. For example, after developing its own Hadoop-based big data analytics expertise Sears created subsidiary MetaScale to provide BDaaS to other enterprises. Ajay Agarwal from Bain Capital Ventures predicts that the confluence of big data and marketing will lead to several new multi-billion dollar companies and I think he is right.

But while big data is important for the marketers, content managers, and IT who attend our conference because of the potential for enhanced predictive analytics and content marketing. The reach and value of big data applications is far broader than marketing – executives need to understand the potential for new efficiencies, products and businesses. The well-known McKinsey report “Big Data: The Next Frontier for Innovation, Competition, and Productivity” (free) is a good place to start. If you are in the information business I focus on that in my report Big-Data: Big Deal or Just Big Buzz? (not free).

Big data presentations at Gilbane Boston

This year we have six presentations on big data, two devoted to big data and marketing and all chosen with an eye towards the needs of our audience of marketers, content strategists, and IT. You can find out more about these presentations, including their date and time on the conference program.

Keynote

Bill Simmons, CTO, DataXu
Why Marketing Needs Big Data

Main Conference Presentations

Tony Jewitt, VP Big Data Solutions at Avalon Consulting, LLC
“Big Data” 101 for Business

Bryan Bell, Vice President, Enterprise Solutions, Expert System
Semantics and the Big Data Opportunity

Brian Courtney, General Manager of Operations Data Management, GE Intelligent Platforms
Leveraging Big Data Analytics

Darren Guarnaccia, Senior VP, Product Marketing, Sitecore
Big Data: What’s the Promise and Reality for Marketers?

Stefan Andreasen, Founder and Chief Technology Officer, Kapow Software
Big Data: Black Hole or Strategic Value?

Update: There is now a video of me being interviewed on big data by CMS-Connected.

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