Google Glass Coming Soon? I Just Don't See It

Google Glass Coming Soon? I Just Don't See It
I can cross one worry off the minds of small and medium size business owners. You’re as likely in the next year to see someone in your establishment wearing Google Glass as you are of a Martian handing you a fake ID to get a case of Red Bull for the long, long ride home.

Still, there are those who predict the imminent arrival and mass adoption of these futuristic goggles that provide an augmented view of surroundings in fun and useful ways (walking directions, for instance).

Google Glass was among the most discussed technologies at South y Southwest Interactive. I saw tweets calling attention to an immense line behind one who was wearing them.

So what’s real?

Google recently announced how fans will be able to get their hands on what Forbes called “futuristic goggles that function like a wearable smartphone.”

In February, the company started an application process for creative "Explorers" who will get to try the first 8,000 pairs of Google Glass. The company said it was looking for "bold, creative individuals who want to join us and be a part of shaping the future of Glass."

These "Explorers" will have to pay $1,500 for their pair of goggles, and will have to pick up their pair of goggles at a special event in San Francisco, New York, or Los Angeles. All applicants had to tell the company what they'd do with the glasses (in 50 words or less) and could submit a few photos or a short video to help illustrate how badly they wanted Glass.

Winners will be announced this month.

While Google is looking to bring real reality to the situation by saying that it is in the “early stages” of development, I heard talk at SXSW about augmented reality becoming commonplace within a couple of years or sooner. There was even a prediction that mobile devices won’t be used anymore because Glass and similar products will do everything and more that a consumer could imagine.

What’s the small and medium size business owner to make of all this?

Don’t spend a single dime in the foreseeable future reacting to what may or may not come to be. Like everything else, we need to weigh possible impacts and put time and effort in accordingly.

In the case of Google Glass, I just don’t see the moment of concern anytime soon.

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This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program  http://Goo.gl/t3fgW, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet. I’ve been compensated to contribute to this program, but the opinions expressed in this post are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions.

Google Glass Coming Soon? I Just Don't See It

Multi-Year Plans and Scaled Up Mobile Investments

Forrester is out with key mobile trends, and whether you are a Fortune 50 marketer with a large budget or a small or medium sized business trying to find promotional money, the list is a must-read.

The industry analyst firm’s trends for 2013 center on multiyear plans and scaled-up investments.

“Mobile’s dynamics of immediacy and ubiquity will challenge the notion that mobile is immature,” Forrester said in a report http://blogs.forrester.com/thomas_husson/13-02-14-2013_mobile_trends_for_mark.... “Innovators will overcome any concerns about maturity to make big, strategic investments in mobile to pull ahead of their competitors. Differentiating with mobile will require marketers to develop the multiyear visions required to drive real change in their business and their approach to implementing mobile services.”

Multi-Year Plans and Scaled Up Mobile Investments
Forrester wisely calls upon marketers and business owners to address two separate use cases for phones and tablets – tablets are used more in home and for longer periods than phones that are mainly used to find things around the mobile device owner.

As to which one to turn to first, Forrester says, “tablets will be the biggest short-term disruptors.”

Also, Forrester predicts more in-house mobile expertise and brands and other businesses looking to “engage a senior executive capable of taking the lead on mobile. Build a staffing plan based on your long term strategy.”

Forrester does not give a timeline for this change to happen, but it does say that the testing days are in the past.

“Mobile on the cheap is over,” the report says. “Implementing the complex technology to make the most of mobile opportunities requires a new vision of how to interact with customers, significant changes in culture and competencies across business and IT, and more investment.”

While there is little new here, it is an important report given Forrester’s vast understanding of the industry and the insights it gleaned from its relationships with brands and agencies.

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This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program  http://Goo.gl/t3fgW, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet. I’ve been compensated to contribute to this program, but the opinions expressed in this post are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions.

Multi-Year Plans and Scaled Up Mobile Investments

 

Face Facts That Even Facebook Loses Its Luster Over Time

Face Facts That Even Facebook Loses Its Luster Over Time
For a lesson on the need to hedge marketing bets, note the new Pew Research Center study that more than six in 10 take breaks from Facebook that last a period of several weeks or longer.

According to Pew, http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2013/Coming-and-going-on-facebook.aspx ,two-thirds of online American adults are Facebook users, making Facebook the dominant social networking site in this country. That fact alone is often enough for many small and medium sized businesses to commit to spending on Facebook.

But consider what Pew is telling us – times and interests change. Of the 61 percent who leave Facebook at least temporarily, the largest group -- 21 percent -- said that their “Facebook vacation” was a result of being too busy with other demands or not having time to spend on the site. Others pointed toward a general lack of interest in the site itself (10 percent mentioned this in one way or another), an absence of compelling content (10 percent), excessive gossip or “drama” from their friends (9 percent), or concerns that they were spending too much time on the site and needed to take a break (8 percent).

Also, 20 percent of the online adults who do not currently use Facebook say they once used the site but no longer do so, according to Pew.

Facebook has several options for small and medium sized business including ones tied to mobile. For instance, Nearby allows users in a mobile application to discover new places their friends like.

Beyond that, businesses can tap into Sponsored Stories that recommends brand pages and content based on friends' activities. Early results showed effectiveness of ads 12 times higher on mobile compared to desktop on average, plus the ads were 45 percent less expensive.

Another option is Promoted Posts that uses the News Feed to highlight content from pages that a user’s friends Like.

The upshot of the Pew study: much like a business can’t carry just one style of shoe or suit, it should use even limited promotional dollars in diversified ways to cover the changes interests of customers and prospects.

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This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program <http://goo.gl/S6P7m>, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet. I’ve been compensated to contribute to this program, but the opinions expressed in this post are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions.

 

Face Facts That Even Facebook Loses Its Luster Over Time
 

 

Quicker Reactions Needed For Businesses In Mobile Age

Quicker Reactions Needed For Businesses In Mobile Age
Small and medium sized businesses will never be like Chase – many don’t yearn to be – but they certainly can learn from the banking giant.

Chase has had to adapt to the speed of communications given the fact that customers carry mobile devices and a forum to take good experiences and bad ones to social networks.

“Mobile gives us a rapid, immediate view if something is going wrong and we address it immediately," Russ Eisenman, head of mobile product marketing and partnerships at JP Morgan Chase, New York, said at this week’s Mobile Marketing Forum in San Francisco.

Customer expectations have never been greater, according to Eisenman, and activities that used to be niche have gone mainstream.

"Depositing a check is no longer a fun thing to do - it's part of the every day ritual,” he said. 

Next up for Chase is providing the ability for consumers to open checking and credit card accounts through mobile products.

“We want to be sure that we are building around the mobile-first mentality – it is a reality that the moment that you wake up, you have an alert that is sitting in your queue that says, ‘here’s your bank account’,” he said.

Checking account balance is the top activity for mobile users, with push notifications and messaging playing a major role in making a mobile device the first place that users go to access their financial information.

The takeaway for small and medium-sized business owners?

In their own ways, they need to respond to meet and exceed the hopes of customers and prospects who wake up every day knowing that, with mobile, it’s no longer business as usual.

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This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business http://goo.gl/S6P7m program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet.

Quicker Reactions Needed For Businesses In Mobile Age