The VP of Devil’s Advocacy

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

In the 2013 film, World War Z, Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) is riding through the streets of Jerusalem as Jurgen Warmbrunn (Ludi Boeken) explains how the city was able to avoid the zombie apocalypse:

The tenth man. If nine of us look at the same information and arrive at the exact same conclusion, it’s the duty of the tenth man to disagree. No matter how improbable it may seem, the tenth man has to start thinking with the assumption that the other nine are wrong.

While Hollywood may have simplified the idea a bit for the screen, this is apparently a very real tactic which Israel has used in the past. Their military has a unit often referred to as the “devil’s advocate office” [PDF]. And yes, the goal is simply to avoid falling prey to group think.

I’ve thought about this concept quite a bit over…

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Enterprise Investments Surge To Over $5.4 Billion

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

After years of backing headline-grabbing consumer internet deals, it seems that venture capitalists are paying more attention (and more money) to the seemingly staid and stodgy enterprise technology companies (the businesses that sell technology to make businesses work better).

Their mission: to explore new ways of organizing data, to seek out new models for efficiency and security for business customers of all shapes and sizes, and to develop new technologies for marketing and selling on devices that no one has done before.

Investments into enterprise software companies of all stripes are soaring. The amount of capital invested in these startups has already surged to over $5.4 billion in the first half of 2014. That’s roughly the same amount that enterprise-facing companies raised in the entire year for 2013, according to data from CrunchBase.

Much of that capital was invested in the monster financing for new database technology, Cloudera, but…

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Facebook Sets Revenue Per User Records Around The World In Q2

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Facebook just turned in a very strong quarter, with its revenue and earnings per share both beating analyst expectations. The company reported sequential-quarter user figures that were soft, but Facebook’s stock is now in the green after-hours.

Driving its strong financial performance in the period was high average revenue per user, or ARPU. Facebook set records around the world for how much revenue it generated from its users on average around the world. Here’s the chart:

Screen Shot 2014-07-23 at 1.19.39 PM

The charts imply that Facebook is able to pick up more cash per user, even as it expands its user base. That’s good news for the company, as it infers, I think, that regions that perform less strongly than North America have a shot at growing their per-user top line, and thus provide Facebook with revenue potential for some time to come.

Of course, Facebook has also placed bets on WhatsApp and Instagram…

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Social networks by the demographics: Useful information!

This is originally found by PEW research on a 1000 or so American people in Dec 2013. Thanks to Maeve Duggan and Aaron Smith for the hard work. It will also be interesting to note the changes by Dec 2014.

social-media-sites-2012-2013

I predict Facebook falls down, Twitter rises slightly, Linkedin increases,
and Pinterest and Instagram smash it and we have new players in the market place as well.

Facebook users

Fully 71% of online adults now use Facebook, and usage among seniors has increased significantly in the last year. Some 45% of internet users age 65 or older now use Facebook, up from 35% who did so in late 2012. Women are also particularly likely to use Facebook compared with men.

Twitter users

Some 18% of online adults currently use Twitter, statistically similar to the 16% who did so in 2012. As was the case in our previous surveys on Twitter use, adoption levels are particularly high among younger adults and African-Americans.

Instagram users

Some 17% of online adults use Instagram, up from 13% in late 2012. Two groups in particular have experienced a notable increase in Instagram usage in the last year. Instagram adoption by internet users ages 18-29 has increased from 28% in late 2012 to 37% in 2013, and adoption by African American internet users has increased from 23% to 34% over the same time period. Instagram was acquired by Facebook in April 2012.

Pinterest users

Some 21% of online adults use Pinterest, up from the 15% who did so in December 2012. Women continue to dominate the site: fully 33% of online women are Pinterest users, compared to just 8% of men. Pinterest users also skew slightly towards the affluent side – those in the highest income bracket are more likely than those in the lowest to use the site, as are those with a college degree or higher compared to those who have not attended college.

LinkedIn users

Some 22% of online adults are LinkedIn users. As a platform geared towards professional networking, its user demographics are unique from the other sites discussed above. Specifically, LinkedIn usage is especially high among people with a college degree or higher, and among those with an annual household income of $75,000 or more. It is also the only social networking site we measured for which usage among 50-64 year olds is higher than usage among those ages 18-29.

Extras:

In this survey, PEW only asked about a subset of the social networking sites that people use. The Pew Research Center’s Journalism Project has collected recent data on the use of other social networking platforms – especially in the context of getting news. To read their material about other sites such as YouTube, Google+, Tumblr, Reddit, and Vine, please go to http://www.journalism.org/2013/11/14/news-use-across-social-media-platforms/.

Which one do you think will fall the most by the end of 2014?

Have your say here.

CraftBot 3D Is Another Take On Making An Affordable, Accessible 3D Printer

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

You wait ages for an affordable 3D printer and then two come along at once… Yesterday we covered Mota 3D‘s Kickstarter campaign to raise $100,000 to get a fully featured, high res RRP $600 3D printer to market. Today meet CraftBot 3D, whose makers are seeking $40,000 via Indiegogo to make an “easy to use affordable” 3D printer.

How affordable? Starting at $399 for early pledgers, but stepping up thereafter — rising to $699 RRP, which is a little more expensive than Mota 3D at full price but the printer is a little more flexible in terms of filament so running costs may be lower.

(Worth noting that a few very early Kickstarter backers were able to bag a Mota 3D for much less than RRP, including a few units offered at a $99 steal.)

The CraftBot 3D has been designed to include a large build area (circa 10in x 8in x 8in) — larger than Mota 3D’s, and…

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Now might be a good time to get into Mobile Gaming…. ;)

Originally posted on Dan Sodergren's mobile blog about mobile stuff:

Juniper Research has released a new report on mobile gaming – which is nice timing for EnterMobile. 

1. Total revenues from mobile games will reach $28.9 billion by 2016 

2. This year’s revenue figure sits at $20.9 billion, which means a 38 per cent growth over two years

3. Developers are increasing their focus on user value, which means maximising their games’ potential, so players should probably expect more in-app rewards, competitive modes, and smarter advertising

4. The rise of casual free-to-play gamers has prompted developers to become more aware of mobile analytics to observe trends and reengage and profit from users to generate better ROI

5. Tablet users will spend more on in-game purchases and generate more revenue per device than users of smartphones

6. The improvements to graphics and performance on tablets will see gamers abandon traditional handheld games consoles, such as the PSP and DS, more quickly…

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Loyalty And Marketing Analytics Startup CrowdTwist Raises $9M More

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

CrowdTwist is announcing that it has raised $9 million in Series B funding.

Since the company offers tools for creating online loyalty programs, co-founder and CEO Irving Fain said that a few years ago, CrowdTwist was sometimes “gravitationally lumped into the intense fervor around gamification,” but he pointed to the new funding is a sign that it has a bigger vision, one that can provide “long-term, sustainable value to brands.”

The real key to CrowdTwist’s approach, Fain added, is the fact that it sees loyalty programs as way to gather data about customers across online, offline, mobile, and social channels — and to do so in a way where all the data is opt-in and owned by the brand itself, not a third-party provider.

“In a world where brands want to customize their experience based on who you are and the things that you care about, they need to look…

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What Facebook and P&G have in common?

Originally posted on Om Malik:

Facebook’s Creative Labs seems to be busy — a new variation of its Paper app and latest Snapchat challenger, Slingshot are latest among the many experiments that world’s largest social platform tries to define its future. In the July/August 2014 issue, Fast Company magazine, talks about co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s “Facebook everywhere” strategy. 

The article only reinforces my recent conclusion that the future of 10-year-old Facebook was similar to the strategy adopted by 175-year old Proctor and Gamble. I came to that conclusion, when I read Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg describe his plans for the future in a recent interview with The New York Times.

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What happened when @jameshowgego met with @johnardern as part of Manchester Marketing Mentors sponsored by @justaxi

Originally posted on Manchester Marketing Mentors:

John Arden Imagelegendary Manchester mentor met with James Howgego who is the eyes, ears and mouth of The Printers Inc, James was the guy brought in by Nick, the founder of the idea, at an early stage to help with marketing, customer service and user processes.

James wanted John’s help as John has nearly 50 years experience in research and mentoring, business and personal – working with companies, agencies, teams and individuals – and over 30 years in his own businesses.

1. What is the name of you and your company / idea

James Howgego, Marketing Director at The Printers Inc

Find us on www.theprintersinc.co.uk @PrintersIncUK and on www.facebook.com/ThePrintersIncImage

2. What is your idea?

We are a print on demand service seeking to empower and facilitate sales of the world’s digital imagery. We work with artists and photographers to sell prints of their work online through their web presences…

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