Mobile Innovation Summit: Friends With Holograms

Last week I attended an interesting session at the Mobile Marketing Summit on augmented reality.

Courtney Harding from Friends with Holograms presented the latest on AR.  Here are some of the highlights:

What is Augmented Reality? 

It’s digital layered on top of the real world

Some common use cases are finding restaurants around town, foreign language translation and locating bathrooms near you.

The key required technology is simply a mobile phone or smart glasses and game and AR engines.

AR adds data to the real world captured thru a camera and analyzed.

Soon AR will be available for delivery through a mobile browser with technology from Friends with Holograms.

AR makes the real world interactive and takes it from limited spaces to any space such as a floor, wall or chair and offers interaction that users want.

You can gamify or add information to the world. For example, maps are flat and hard to read, but an AR map is edited into the world on a three-dimensional plane that is easier to navigate.

The message from Friends with Holograms: “Don’t wait till the glasses come out.”

Though not at scale for customers, smart glasses adoption in the industrial realm is growing. There are industrial use cases that are economical in a way that’s not true for consumers.


Let customers answer their own questions. Sales reps who are stuck repeating answers to familiar questions rather than selling can be freed with AR. Marketers can use AR to make it fun for customers to get answers themselves.

AR could help people scan items and get information from a hologram or determine if two items go together, such as a charger and a phone. It could be used to hover a phone over a particular place to win a prize.

Marketers could drive audience response with an interactive game. For example, hiding a mascot in locations and get people exploring and then ending in a desired place. It’s a scavenger hunt and people really find it fun. It also gets people out and about and moving in the real world.

How can AR reduce post purchase friction?

One big problem for appliance sellers is when the couch arrives at the apartment building or hose and it doesn’t fit.  An Appliance seller could use AR to determine if the unit fits in all places for delivery.

What’s Next? 

Now, you have to leave a website to download an app in the store. In the future developers  will add a plug in for browsers to use the AR engine to engage camera and track surfaces through a web browser.

AR is more practical than VR, which requires more information.  To be ready for the growth of AR, it helps to have a library of digital assets that can be used to represent various elements of the brand experience.


Live from the Mobile Innovation Summit


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Today I am live posting from the Mobile Innovation Summit.

Verizon’s Rohan Gandhi presented: Breaking the Golden Rules: How Unconventional Decisions Drive Results in Digital.

What makes for a good mobile experience? Go ahead and break the rules. Followed to a fault, rules result in a sub-optimal customer experience.

People’s expectations have changed and it’s hard to predict what they want.  Often, they can’t even articulate their needs and desires.

When there is change people seek comfort. There are numerous psychological biases and everyone’s brain is stuck with these biases. We make silly proclamations such as:

Email is dead.

The Skin email digest raised significant rounds of money, built on email.

Brick and mortar retail is dead.

Bonobos, Amazon and Warby Parker now have stores. Verizon was founded in retail, so it has to reformat.

Here are three myths that Verizon busted in mobile:

1.The fewer steps, the better

If fewer steps are best then zero steps would lead to 100% conversion. But that’s not so.

Customers expect a human experience. Marketers should ask “how does the customer perceive the complexity of the purchase?”  Customers want to buy a phone from a person rather than online. If taxes were done in 1 step, people wouldn’t trust it. 70% of Verizon customers start on web and end in store, so Verizon added steps in the process to make people more comfortable.

2. Design alone can’t get you results

Some people think that if you don’t fix the whole thing, you shouldn’t do it. Though one has to look at the metrics, design can add a lot. Use the data and embrace constraints. Verizon hasd too much support documentation to focus on relevant topics. So, they designed a miniguide and trafficked them to users based on funnel information. This was a 100% design driven strategy

3. User experience is only about usefulness

We don’t do enough brand experience planning. Brand essence happens in little moments that add up.

Verizon spends time on motion and clean design. For example, when a customer buys a certain service, the mobile site unleashes confetti. It’s fun, but hard to measure.

These kinds of experiences make the brand accessible to customers.

How to Teach Social Media Marketing: Global

Most summers I am traveling and I always assess the digital capabilities in the countries I visit. Here in Armenia the population is well connected via cell phone and many people use smart phones. I have heard that the country is seeking to become a tech hub as it is landlocked and surrounded by some less than friendly neighbors. 

How to Teach Social Media Marketing: Integrating Traditional and Digital Media

These slides cover integrated marketing communications for traditional and digital media. The opening case study discusses the example of P&G reducing paid media spending online.  This issue highlights the crisis of mistrust facing online publishers.  In addition the lesson includes:

  • budgeting for traditional and digital media
  • media spending
  • cost per thousand for various forms of media including online
  • cross media processing
  • brand lift and ad effectiveness

There are video case studies that show brands that effectively integrate media for the following brands:

  • Go Pro Cameras
  • King Video Games
  • L’Oreal Clay Mask


Link to the slides click here: Integrating Media

These slides accompany Social Media & Mobile Marketing Strategy from Oxford University Press.

How to Teach Social Media Marketing: Strategy Execution

These slides help professors teaching social media marketing cover strategy execution.  The topics covered here include:

  • Paid, owned, earned and social media
  • Programmatic buying
  • Real time bidding
  • Native advertising
  • Trust in advertising

The slides accompany Social Media & Mobile Marketing Strategy from Oxford University Press.   There are a number of exercises embedded in the slides to help students demonstrate skills in social media.

Is Alexa Making us Stupid?

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How smart is Alexa? Not very. In fact she might be helping to dumb down an entire generation.

Alexa’s main source of information is Wikipedia. As a college professor I caution my students to check their sources. Wikipedia may be a useful starting  point for information, but it is often not accurate, shows only certain sides of an issue and does not cover all topics well. Students are not permitted to cite Wiki as their main source in may college courses.

Is Alexa smart? I asked her a few questions as a test.

Alexa, can you access Google Scholar?

  • “Go to the help and feedback section of the Alexa app.”

Alexa, what is the first article title in the latest issue of the Journal of Marketing?

  • Alexa makes a short tone only

Alexa, what is the impact of global warming on the state of Florida?

  • Here’s something I found on Wikipedia…

Alexa, what are the last 10 questions that someone asked you.

  • Sorry, I don’t know that one

Alexa, what are your terms and conditions of usage?

  • Sorry, I don’t know that one.

Alexa, can you explain the meaning of the song “Hotel California?”

  • Sorry, I don’t know that one.

The only saving grace at this point is that Alexa provides the source of her “knowledge.” However as we well know, the terms and conditions of service change per the whim of the company providing services. Ultimately if Amazon no longer feels that sourcing data is helpful to the business model it can stop at anytime. There are absolutely no protections for users by the government.  As such, giving up privacy for a device that plays you songs may not be a great bargain.

This blog covers how to teach social media marketing and accompanies the text “Social Media & Mobile Marketing Strategy from Oxford University Press.

How to teach social media marketing strategy planning


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These slides focus on the social media marketing strategy planning process with an emphasis on content marketing. Did you know that there is a process to optimize the content you publish?  You want to understand your customers, examine your competitors, develop thoughtful strong content and leverage that content across your channels.  Great content can establish your expertise, engage your clients and operate as a data collection tool.  People will give you email addresses to get your content.  Once you have their email addresses you can access Facebook Look Alike audiences and really find the people with whom you want to interact.

Generally speaking a good content marketing strategy and plan can boost your sales leads and improve the bottom line.  Embedded in this presentation are videos with case studies and the results of a recent Content Marketing Institute study of B2B and B2C content strategies.

Click on the link here for the SLIDES from Slideshare.

These slides accompany Social Media & Mobile Marketing Strategy by Randi Priluck from Oxford University Press.  These are a social media teaching resource for faculty looking to add digital media to the classroom.

How to Teach Digital Prerequisites for Social Media Marketing Strategies

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This set of slides helps professors teach an important aspect of social media marketing. Specifically, the important prerequisites that must be satisfied prior to planning for social media marketing.  This social media marketing teaching resource covers digital marketing, search engine marketing, search engine optimization, email marketing, website design and mobile first design.  Marketers must have a strong product offering, a plan for customer service and crisis management along with a website that drive the desired response.  The slides contain videos and case studies related to digital marketing and media.

Digital Prerequisites for Social Media Marketing Slides

These slides accompany Social Media and Mobile Marketing Strategy from Oxford University press.


How to Teach Social Media Marketing: Keyword Research Tools Exercise


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Showing students the available tools to teach them how to use data to make decisions about marketing strategy is a key to effective teaching in social media.  Since digital media are an essential part of a social media marketing strategy, students must understand search engine marketing and search engine optimization techniques. This social media marketing exercise introduces students to two tools: Spyfu and SEMRush.  Both take data from Googel Keyword Planner and display the information in a more user friendly manner.  It is also easier to log-into these sites.  The limitation is that they do not provide as much data per search.

This exercise goes well with either chapter three or seven in Social Media & Mobile Marketing Strategy from Oxford University Press.

Social Media Marketing Keyword Exercise

Your Task

Develop keyword strategies and then build keywords lists for the following business:

You are the marketing director for the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. The museum would like to attract visitors to New York City.  The target market is tourists who are looking for historical and interesting activities in the city.  Your job is to identify the optimal key words that tourists type into Google’s search engine so that you can determine the content you should include in your website and the terms you would use for paid search advertising.

Your Client

The Lower East Side Tenement Museum, located at 97 and 103 Orchard Street in the Lower East Side neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City, is a National Historic Site. The five-story brick tenement building at 97 Orchard was home to an estimated 7,000 people, from over 20 nations, between 1863 and 1935. The museum, which includes a visitors’ center down the block, promotes tolerance and historical perspective on the immigrant experience.


Steps to Take

  1. Brainstorm a set of key words that you think people might type into Google for this search.
  2. Begin typing these words into the search engine and identify 3 long-tail key words using the Google search box. The options will appear as you search.
  3. Use Spyfu and the URL
  4. Click on Keyword Groups to identify many key words and the value of each.
  5. Consider the cost, the search volume, the keyword difficulty and the logic of the word/phrase itself.
  6. Determine the best key word to emphasize in your strategy given that the museum wants to maximize reach at the lowest possible cost. Explain your result.
  7. How does the options given by Spyfu compare to the words you brainstormed? Explain.
  8. Type the best keyword from #2 that you determined into SEMrush. How does your keyword compare to those recommended by Spyfu?
  9. Which tool is better? Spyfu or SEMRush?


How to Teach Social Media Marketing Slides

This week I uploaded a set of slides that cover research for social media marketing strategies.  The topic focuses on social media listening, the challenges in measuring sentiment online and the tools that marketers can use to evaluate their online communications.

There are case studies embedded in the slides and videos featuring NASCAR’s social media listening center and examining Nutella’s online visual strategy with Talkwalker.  The presentation also includes two exercises that professors can use in class with students or assign at home or in an online course.

These slides are social media marketing teaching resources to accompany Social Media & Mobile Marketing Strategy from Oxford University Press.  The text can be used in a stand-alone social media course or as part of a broader advertising class that includes digital media.

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