Category Archives: Things We Love

Things We Love

Amazon Launches ‘Home Services’ To Take the Guesswork Out of Booking Goat Grazing Services

Written by: Rita Mogilanski
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Amazon recently launched Home Services, a portal that allows users to find, schedule, and purchase professional services through Amazon. The services that are currently provided include appliance repair and installation, home cleaning, music lessons, iPhone repair, and so much more (including Goat Grazing).

Why Use Amazon?

Amazon handpicks the service providers to assure quality by performing background checks and verifying insurance and licenses. They remove most of the risk associated with choosing domestic help by suggesting only verified vendors and giving customers standardized, prepackaged prices. Amazon will match prices if customers find a lower price for the service provider elsewhere, and you are only charged after the service is completed.

4.1-1This service will prove helpful for users making purchases that need installation. When shopping for an air conditioner, I was served a link to book a professional to install the appliance. This seamless integration relieves much of the stress around installing major appliances. Consumers already trust Amazon and will be willing to go with the professional services the platform recommends to expedite the process.

4.1-2
How is it Changing the Industry?

Other similar platforms like Angie’s List and Yelp provide users with trustworthy reviews. Unlike Angie’s List, there is no membership fee for Amazon, and unlike Yelp, you can book directly through the site. Competing platforms may choose to increase the services they provide to be more robust in order to compete with Amazon’s one-stop shop experience.

TaskRabbit, which is a platform that provides services very similar to Amazon Home Services, has partnered with Amazon in such a way that allows Amazon users to hire fully-vetted “Taskers,” or TaskRabbit’s service providers, through Amazon.

Small businesses that rely on the local community may feel the pressure of competition from businesses listed on Amazon. For professional services looking to get their business on the website, they can apply here. Businesses pay Amazon a portion of the profits, and Amazon handles payments and customer complaints and issues, taking some of the stress off the professionals as well as the customers.

If you’re looking to take the risk and guesswork out of booking professional help, Amazon Home Services is a great tool. They are currently making life easier for customers and small business owners in most major US cities. For similar platforms, however, the competition just got real.

Image: Amazon.com

Image: Amazon.com

 

The Marketing Arm Digital – September 2014 Newsletter

Written by: Larry Weintraub
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We published our monthly newsletter! Check it out below, and to see it in all its glory with working links, click HERE.

Sept-Newsletter.2014

The Marketing Arm Digital – August Newsletter

Written by: Digitally Approved
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We published our monthly newsletter! Check it out below, and to see it in all its glory with working links, click HERE.

August-Newsletter.2014

SXSW 2015 – What Will Advertising Look Like in the Year 2020

Written by: Tom Edwards
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Now through September 5th, 2014 is the time to vote on panels & presentations for SXSW Interactive 2015. I have submitted a presentation for consideration and would greatly appreciate your support.

Screenshot 2014-08-11 11.06.41

My proposed topic is What Will Advertising Look Like in the Year 2020. This is an in-depth extension of my previously published iMedia article of the same name. Here is a brief outline of the proposed presentation. I will also roll out the new consumer engagement platform called #DatabaseOfYou during this presentation.

Screenshot 2014-08-07 10.30.58

Presentation Description

Where should marketers and brands place bets over the next five years? What is hype over substance? Taking all of this into consideration, I interviewed my strategy teams in Los Angeles, New York, and Dallas to map the state of digital marketing in the year 2020. We had fun with discussions of drones, crypto currency, the internet of people, and more. While the team agreed fundamentally about certain platforms making an impact, there were pros and cons to impact and feasibility. The following panel is the consolidated and highly visual vision of the future of advertisting in the year 2020. This presentation will take a look back at transformational media moments that give clues to the future state of advertising. We will then look at the role of integrated mobile, converged media, connected life and the digital ecosystem of the future. Presentation Cameos by Drones, Terminators, the Jetson’s, Marty McFly, Grumpy Cat and more!!!

Questions to be Answered

 

The presentation will focus on the three predicted core pillars of advertising in 2020 (Content, Data, Channels). The pillars will fuel the discussion and points of connection between where technology is going and how to stay relevant with a information overloaded consumer.

1) How can media of the past predict the future state of advertising?

2) What role will mobile + wearables play in 2020?

3) How can media fragmentation and personalization unlock new opportunities for converged media?

4) What role will the internet of things and connected life play in predictive advertising?

5) Who will be left standing as major players digital ecosystem players in the year 2020?

Here is a preview of some of the initial visuals tied to the presentation.

 

I would greatly appreciate your support with a vote. You can vote here. In order to vote you must create an account at http://panelpicker.sxsw.com

Then you can simply search for Tom Edwards and give it a thumbs up to submit your vote.

SXSW - Tom

Thank you in advance for your support! It is much appreciated.

Follow Tom Edwards @Blackfin360

Clios In The House

Written by: Digitally Approved
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clio-sports

In the ad world, there is no higher achievement than the Clio. In Advertising, it is the equivalent to the Oscars. If you are a Mad Men watcher, then maybe your remember when Don accepted the Clio for his work on GloCoat. But Peggy was insulted that he didn’t thank her.  Then Roger held the Clio hostage unless he acknowledged that it was a team effort.  But we digress.

clios

There are a number of Clio awards given for specific industries and they recently handed out statues for outstanding work in Sports. We were lucky enough to receive two of them and we’d love to give a shout out to the tremendous work exhibited by the entire creative teams at The Marketing Arm with special nods to Brandon Stuart and Marc Gilbar who accepted the awards for the Callaway Golf “Hit the Links” and PepsiMax “Test Drive 2” campaigns.

Wearables & The Quantified Self Movement

Written by: Tom Edwards
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I was recently asked by ADWEEK about opportunities for brands and fitness wearables. The discussion focused on utility and the future of the quantified self movement and whether hardware or software is the way to go. The final portion of the conversation was focused on fashion vs. function and the importance of aesthetics for mass adoption. Below is my full commentary.

Brands and Utility

For the right brand there is a significant opportunity to capitalize on the quantified self movement and create new streams of revenue. Market analysts project significant upside for wearable tech over the next few years.

biiwearablesmktsz

SOURCE Business Insider

The value for brands comes in the form of ongoing engagement and value to the consumer. By providing active utility the brand is taking something that used to provide a passive function and unlocks behavioral patterns of the consumer, activity and in some cases emotional data and any positive results can be equated with the brand.

que-son-wearables-android-wear-esta-aqui-L-sDN62C

The other point to consider is the quantified self data and utility will ultimately be a part of a larger connected ecosystem. In the near future data from a fitness tracker can coincide with smart grid technology to predict your needs. An example would be you just returned from a long run, your tracker communicates with your smart fridge and it prepares to dispense your favorite after work out beverage while ordering more via a real time delivery service such as Amazon Fresh.

Predictive

Hardware vs. Software

Brands like Nike were at the forefront of the quantified self movement. The Fuel band resonated with innovators and early consumer adopters. With success came competition from device manufacturers that had a longer heritage and provided additional utility. They expanded beyond fitness to include emotional measurement, sleep sensors, etc… which began to move away from the Nike value proposition. The learning from this was the real value was less in the hardware and more in the data collected and the visualization of results.

Nike_Fuel_Band

The industry shift that brands like Nike see on the horizon is the shift from hardware and more around software and data. What this means is that brands like Nike see the day coming soon where it is less about the hardware and more about sharing and visualizing the data that is collected through whatever the device, be it smart clothing, watches, glasses, etc… and making thier API’s available.

Photo Jul 17, 12 05 49 PM

Fashion vs. Function

One of the primary barriers associated with wearables has been tied closely to aesthetics. A rubber bracelet that glows is not always the ideal choice for the fashion conscious. And for the early & late majority of consumer adopters, going beyond simple utility will be important for mass adoption.

wearables

Recent studies have shown that women outnumber men among prospective buyers of wearable technology devices. What I see happening in the short term are a number of partnerships such as the announced Tory Burch and Fitbit partnership or cross-industry hiring, similar to Apple hiring Burberry’s former CEO to bridge the gap between aesthetic form and function.

Tory Burch & Fitbit Partnership

Fitbit & Tory Burch

Here is a link to the ADWEEK commentary

Adweek.jpg

Follow Tom Edwards @BlackFin360

Scotch Facts

Written by: Justin Runyon
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SCOTCH FACTS

If you know me, then you know I enjoy the occasional cocktail after work. I’m specifically a fan of whisky, with a preference for Scotch whisky, and I consider myself our team’s whisky expert. Weekly I share what I call, “Scotch Facts: Your Weekly Dram of Whisky Wisdom” with my office friends and I thought you might like to see it too. Cheers! – Justin

Whisky Fact of the Week:
Scotch Facts are just the beginning; you can actually attend The Scotch Whisky Training School in Edinburgh and get the full-on whisky education you always dreamed of. They’ll teach you everything from differences in the history of whisky to the art of blending. More info: http://www.scotlandwhisky.com/trade/ScotchWhiskytrainingschool/

Your New Favorite Bar:
Jack Rose – Washington, D.C. You could spend your entire life in this place and never try all the whiskies. Oh, and they have whisky on draft. If you’re ever in D.C., make sure you stop here. http://jackrosediningsaloon.com/

Lagniappe (a little something extra):
Did you know: There’s an initiative going on in the UK right now to turn whisky by-products into biofuel that can power cars? Check it out: http://www.clickgreen.org.uk/news/national-news/124862-whisky-powered-vehicles-take-step-closer-to-commercial-reality.html

Got any Scotch Facts you want to send my way? Just tweet me @justrunyon.