Oct 30

Youku Tudou and Alibaba Group Collaborate to Innovate Online Video Marketing








BEIJING, Oct. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Youku Tudou Inc. (NYSE: YOKU), China’s leading Internet television company (“Youku Tudou”), and Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA) today announced that the two companies will work together to drive the adoption of big data in marketing in China. Alibaba Group’s online marketing technology platform, Alimama, will use its data and technology to support innovative online video marketing techniques, i.e. View and Buy developed by Youku, and Merchants’ Video Channel developed by Tudou; and help small companies to improve their operations with data and make online video marketing services more accessible to them. 

Alimama announced earlier this year that it would launch online video marketing services in collaboration with major video websites in China to help widen the relevance and reach of online video marketing by Taobao Marketplace and Tmall.com merchants to a broader base of customers. Today’s announcement represents a deepening of the existing collaboration by working together with Youku Tudou on data and technology.

“This collaboration is benefiting from the combination of advantages from both sides. The Youku Tudou Cloud and Alibaba’s data and technology will collaboratively bring consumer behavior in media and entertainment and consumer behavior in products and services closer together. Both parties will work in stride to realize the “Screen is Channel” and the “Content is Storefront” vision, creating strong synergies between the domains of media and entertainment, and commerce and payment. By working together, we will work to usher in the new online plus offline era.” said Victor Koo, Chairman and CEO of Youku Tudou.

“We will build the marketing infrastructure with Youku Tudou in the big data era with the aim of creating value for small companies with data, improving user experience, and building a simple yet highly effective ecosystem that can benefit all participants,” added Jonathan Lu, chief executive officer of Alibaba Group.

At the announcement event, Alimama also formally launched its open Data Management Platform (Alimama DMP). Through this platform, Alibaba Group works with brands and merchants to enhance understanding of their customer data and to direct targeted marketing to a broader base of consumers with similar attributes. For buyers, Alibaba Group uses its data to create a better shopping experience by personalizing search results and shopping recommendations.

Youku Tudou and Alimama will also jointly establish a Marketing Innovation Lab in addition to the Big Data cooperation. This lab will aim to drive development of innovative online video marketing techniques and products such as View and Buy and Merchants’ Video Channel. As indicated by the name “View and Buy,” a consumer can click on merchandise that appears in the video they’re viewing and make a purchase without interrupting the playback. The Merchants’ Video Channel gives merchants an opportunity to market their products and services by themselves where they can create fun videos to promote their products, get consumers’ attention and trigger purchasing actions.

The two marketing techniques/products are a result of the seamless collaboration between Youku Tudou and Alibaba Group. Youku Tudou leverages video viewing behavior data to help merchants identify and advertise during the right timing and context in videos and to find and recommend relevant products to specific consumers.

About Youku Tudou Inc.

Youku Tudou Inc. (NYSE: YOKU) is China’s leading Internet television company. Its Youku and Tudou Internet television platforms enable users to search, view and share high-quality video content quickly and easily across multiple devices. Its Youku brand and Tudou brand are the most recognized online video brands in China. Youku Tudou’s American depositary shares, each representing 18 of Youku Tudou’s Class A ordinary shares, are traded on the NYSE under the symbol “YOKU.”

About Alibaba Group

Alibaba Group’s mission is to make it easy to do business anywhere. The company is the largest online and mobile commerce company in the world in terms of gross merchandise volume. Founded in 1999, the company provides the fundamental technology infrastructure and marketing reach to help businesses leverage the power of the Internet to establish an online presence and conduct commerce with hundreds of millions of consumers and other businesses.

Alibaba Group’s major businesses include:

  • Taobao Marketplace (www.taobao.com), China’s largest online shopping destination
  • Tmall.com (www.tmall.com), China’s largest online third-party platform for brands and retailers
  • Juhuasuan (www.juhuasuan.com), China’s most popular online group buying marketplace
  • Alitrip (www.alitrip.com), a leading online travel booking platform
  • AliExpress (www.aliexpress.com), a global online marketplace for consumers to buy directly from China
  • Alibaba.com (www.alibaba.com), China’s largest global online wholesale platform for small businesses
  • 1688.com (www.1688.com), a leading online wholesale marketplace in China
  • Alibaba Cloud Computing (www.aliyun.com), a leading provider of cloud computing services to businesses and entrepreneurs

Alibaba Group also provides payment and/or escrow services on its marketplaces through its contractual arrangements with Ant Financial Services Group, a related company of Alibaba Group which operates Alipay (www.alipay.com).

Through China Smart Logistics (or Zhejiang Cainiao Supply Chain Management Co., Ltd.), a 48%-owned affiliate, Alibaba Group operates a central logistics information system that connects a network of express delivery companies in China.

For media enquiries, please contact:

Youku Tudou

Jay Chen
jaychen@youku.com
(+8610) 5885-1881 x 7161

Alibaba Group

Robert H. Christie
bob.christie@alibaba-inc.com
+1 917 860 9410

Florence Shih
florenceshih@hk.alibaba-inc.com
+852 2215 5114

For investor enquiries, please contact:

ryan.cheung@youku.com

investor@alibaba-inc.com  

SOURCE Youku Tudou Inc.

RELATED LINKS
http://www.taobao.com
http://www.tmall.com
http://www.juhuasuan.com
http://www.alitrip.com
http://www.aliexpress.com
http://www.alibaba.com
http://www.1688.com
http://www.aliyun.com

Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.com/youku-tudou-and-alibaba-group-collaborate-to-innovate-online-video-marketing/

Oct 29

Add Extra Revenue to Your Business with a Strong Internet Marketing Campaign

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — The advent of the Internet has been a boon for businesses around the globe; it has allowed for the direct exchange of products and communication at a much faster pace, and has given companies the ability to gain a much wider audience and customer base. At the same time, organizations that don’t keep up with the breakneck pace of the digital age may miss out on many of the benefits of Internet exposure Cyberset Corp, a respected Internet marketing company, has the experience, resources, and talent to develop effective online campaigns for companies to increase visibility, consumer awareness, and advertising revenue.

For any company or organization, a website is the beginning of establishing an online presence, and professional web design is paramount. Websites often provide a prospective customer or client’s  first impression of a business, and it’s important to make it a good one. A visually appealing layout, easy to navigate menus, and well written content all go a long way toward creating a solid foundation that serves as an online launching pad for that organization’s message, service, or product. Moreover, having high quality SEO friendly content is critical because it will increase a site’s rankings in search engines like Google and Bing greatly increasing the site’s visibility and multiplying web traffic. A solid website is only the beginning of a strong internet marketing campaign. For a company to make the most out of the online ecosystem, they must deliver their message on as many platforms as possible, including social media outlets like Facebook and Google Plus. In addition to crafting websites to their clients’ specific tastes and preferences, Cyberset offers social media marketing services to expand upon a strongly established website. Through social media, Cyberset synchronizes its expertly crafted content across multiple platforms to help its clients reach an even greater audience for even more exposure. This increased exposure leads back to the original website which, in turn, further multiplies revenue.

In today’s highly competitive business landscape, companies and organizations need every advantage they can get. The benefits of an effective Internet marketing campaign are twofold: they help a company or organization reach a wider audience, and can also become a lucrative investment thanks for sites that sell advertising by increasing  traffic. Through years expertise garnered through years of experience, Cyberset is able to carve out the ideal online space. The company’s expert team is dedicated, highly flexible and ready to meet the needs of clients, whether it’s focusing on content for a large conglomerate, or small business web design. Cyberset offers a digital advantage for successful competition in an online era. For more information on how Cyberset’s online resources can be of use to you company, call Cyberset today for a free consultation at 800-601-5055, or contact the company online at www.Cyberset.com.

PR Submitted by www.Cyberset.com

To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/add-extra-revenue-to-your-business-with-a-strong-internet-marketing-campaign-145725366.html

SOURCE Cyberset Corp.

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Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.com/add-extra-revenue-to-your-business-with-a-strong-internet-marketing-campaign/

Oct 28

Add Extra Revenue to Your Business with a Strong Internet Marketing Campaign – SYS

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LOS ANGELES, Oct. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — The advent of the Internet has been a boon for businesses around the globe; it has allowed for the direct exchange of products and communication at a much faster pace, and has given companies the ability to gain a much wider audience and customer base. At the same time, organizations that don’t keep up with the breakneck pace of the digital age may miss out on many of the benefits of Internet exposure Cyberset Corp, a respected Internet marketing company, has the experience, resources, and talent to develop effective online campaigns for companies to increase visibility, consumer awareness, and advertising revenue.

For any company or organization, a website is the beginning of establishing an online presence, and professional web design is paramount. Websites often provide a prospective customer or client’s  first impression of a business, and it’s important to make it a good one. A visually appealing layout, easy to navigate menus, and well written content all go a long way toward creating a solid foundation that serves as an online launching pad for that organization’s message, service, or product. Moreover, having high quality SEO friendly content is critical because it will increase a site’s rankings in search engines like Google and Bing greatly increasing the site’s visibility and multiplying web traffic. A solid website is only the beginning of a strong internet marketing campaign. For a company to make the most out of the online ecosystem, they must deliver their message on as many platforms as possible, including social media outlets like Facebook and Google Plus. In addition to crafting websites to their clients’ specific tastes and preferences, Cyberset offers social media marketing services to expand upon a strongly established website. Through social media, Cyberset synchronizes its expertly crafted content across multiple platforms to help its clients reach an even greater audience for even more exposure. This increased exposure leads back to the original website which, in turn, further multiplies revenue.

In today’s highly competitive business landscape, companies and organizations need every advantage they can get. The benefits of an effective Internet marketing campaign are twofold: they help a company or organization reach a wider audience, and can also become a lucrative investment thanks for sites that sell advertising by increasing  traffic. Through years expertise garnered through years of experience, Cyberset is able to carve out the ideal online space. The company’s expert team is dedicated, highly flexible and ready to meet the needs of clients, whether it’s focusing on content for a large conglomerate, or small business web design. Cyberset offers a digital advantage for successful competition in an online era. For more information on how Cyberset’s online resources can be of use to you company, call Cyberset today for a free consultation at 800-601-5055, or contact the company online at www.Cyberset.com.

PR Submitted by www.Cyberset.com

To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/add-extra-revenue-to-your-business-with-a-strong-internet-marketing-campaign-145725366.html

SOURCE Cyberset Corp.

Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.com/add-extra-revenue-to-your-business-with-a-strong-internet-marketing-campaign-sys/

Oct 27

Starting Up, Then And Now: Why Branson Believes Business Life Is Better Today

Did entrepreneurs have an easier time starting up a decade or so ago?

It’s a sentiment I’ve heard echoed many times by today’s entrepreneurs, and one that is rather puzzling, given the technological advantages that modern business start-ups have.

Yet it seem it is the rapid pace technological evolution that has left many feeling that life in the start-up world was somehow easier in years gone by.

Fifty nine per cent of start-up owners recently polled by Constant Contact Constant Contact said it was harder to run a small business now than five years ago, with 49% admitting they struggled to keep pace with technology, and 40% feeling the heat of increased direct competition. Specifically 23% bemoaned the higher costs of marketing, while the same proportion were perplexed by the sheer number of online marketing tools.

To be fair, modern day entrepreneurs are also contending with huge cultural shifts that no one envisaged a decade ago, more costly business regulation, and maybe even the modern mindset of entrepreneurship. Back in the day, didn’t start-ups seem to be more the result of liberal freeform thinking than the formal structured constraints that shape modern business plans?

One way to find out, was to ask a few seasoned entrepreneurs how they viewed starting up in business then and now.

richard-branson111

Virgin founder Richard Branson

Virgin founder Richard Branson started his first business, the youth-culture magazine Student in 1966, and his second, a mail-order record company called Virgin, in 1969, long before the advent of the mobile phone, social media, and crowd funding. Since then his Virgin brand has spawned hundreds of businesses, including Virgin Records, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Galactic, that span the globe.

While he concedes there wasn’t as much competition within the start-up world ten years ago, he insists that today’s business climate is much more supportive of entrepreneurs.

Branson says: “Technology is advancing fast and demanding rapid innovation, self-employment is on the rise and becoming an accepted norm. Therefore companies and individuals are looking to invest in start-ups, and governments and business groups are supporting entrepreneurs with various loans, such as our own Virgin StartUp scheme. Provided that you have a product or service that fills a gap in the market, this is a great time to be an entrepreneur.”

Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.com/starting-up-then-and-now-why-branson-believes-business-life-is-better-today/

Oct 26

Book Preview: Crowdsourced Innovation – Quo Vadis?

The following text is an excerpt chapter from innosabis upcoming book “Crowdsourced Innovation – Revolutionizing Open Innovation with Crowdsourcing“, which will be published by the end of November.

Companies are no longer limited to advertisement and market research in their interaction with consumers. It is no longer a privilege for small businesses to be the only companies that can have a daily exchange of ideas with their customers. The reality today reflects what the writers of the visionary and iconoclastic Cluetrain Manifesto envisioned fifteen years ago: the marketplace has become a worldwide conversation. The Cluetrain Manifesto in 1999 put forward ideas about the revolutionizing impact the internet would have on both markets and organizations. Its single most important statement reads as follows:

“A powerful global conversation has begun. Through the Internet, people are discovering and inventing new ways to share relevant knowledge with blinding speed. As a direct result, markets are getting smarter —and getting smarter faster than most companies.” (1)

The Cluetrain Manifesto gave business leaders the notion of the internet as a marketplace and helped them to rethink the way they traditionally marketed their products and services. We embed our vision of Crowdsourced Innovation in this context, turning the intangible “target groups” and “demographics” into living, breathing human beings, whose voices need to be heard and whose ideas need to be taken seriously. Companies now realize that they receive major competitive advantages when they reach out to customers, discussing prospects and future offerings with them. We witnessed how companies earn the trust of consumers and yield commercially more successful products and services by opening up their innovation and development processes. The internet enables them to have “human-to-human” conversations, which have the potential to radically transform traditional business practices.

Unfortunately, many companies still fail to tap into the full power of the internet when they use it with a mass-media mind set. Advertising over the web is often seen as the holy grail of online marketing. But this approach does not take into account the true nature of online conversations and customer expectations. Even when companies do decide to open up, many expect the consumer to come to them and are then disappointed by low rates of interaction. What these companies do not yet understand is that they have to work to earn the trust of their customers before any real dialogue can take place.

Earning trust does not happen overnight, once achieved it is not granted forever and can be lost overnight. We see Crowdsourced Innovation as an important building block for constant feedback from customers and other interested stakeholders. But companies must adopt long-term, sustainable Crowdsourcing strategies to accelerate innovation and insight generation if they are to keep up with the changing behaviors and needs of consumers. The biggest appeal of Crowdsourcing is its ability to engage consumers and advocates – existing and future customers – in a company’s creative process, thereby turning passive advocates and fans into (inter)active communities. Companies should also integrate Crowdsourced Innovation internally to tap into latent innovation potential and foster innovation through bottom-up contributions from their own employees resulting in increased motivation, engagement and loyalty. Engaging internal and external stakeholders in a fair and transparent way will create a new business culture, ultimately allowing true collaboration.

Fueling Crowdsourced Innovation with Big Data

The questions we are asking ourselves are “Where are we going next?” and “What will be the next big development in Crowdsourced Innovation?”. The answers to both of these questions lie in the evolving ways society interacts with and responds to technology. Tools embedded in software and technical devices detect information and collect data, analyzing where we are, what we want and who we are; data is generated every time we use the devices. Technology tracks our every move, web searches, health data such as blood pressure, and where we travel. Sometimes it follows us conspicuously in order to provide certain services like GPS navigation or optimized internet searches, and sometimes it tracks our movements inconspicuously to analyze our behavior to improve the business of others – all the loyalty programs in supermarkets are a prime example. We expect that the next big wave of crowd innovation will stem from these large amounts of data – so called “Big Data” – and the intelligent analysis thereof. But in order to truly understand the potential of Big Data, the Cluetrain Manifesto again provides us with valuable insights. When David “Doc” Searls, one of the manifesto’s authors, discussed the impact of Big Data with Forbes Magazine, he used the principles from 1999 to highlight the influence of the people who generate the data: “All the talk about ‘Big Data’ and ‘the cloud’ is in the B2B space: companies selling services to companies. Individual people are nowhere to be found, except as a source of data, and then mostly through surveillance rather than through conscious and voluntary sharing. At the end of the day, which I think will be a year or two from now, asking what people can do with data will be like asking what people can do with computers or what they can do with networks.” (2) We share his vision that data needs to be put in the hands of the people and this is where the innovative power will be in the future.

Data that is from users and for users will help them to understand themselves better than ever before, and we foresee that this increased knowledge will eventually inspire never-before-seen user innovation. By connecting self-generated data with our personal feelings, experiences, and needs, we will be able to solve our problems in unique ways. In essence, we will utilize Big Data by individualizing it.

An obvious application will be in the health care sector; often times even unintentionally, users will track exercise and nutritional data and learn how certain lifestyle and habits affect their overall health. The individualization of Big Data will also lead to more user entrepreneurs, since the internet has decreased the start-up barriers for new companies. Some established companies might interpret this development as a threat: new and agile competitors that have very customer-centric views will enter their markets. But this development will also provide new opportunities for companies to build platforms and APIs to which users can connect personally developed devices, solutions, and services. The companies who recognize user innovators as a source for corporate innovation will quickly and successfully gain a competitive advantage as long as they offer fair partnerships and fair conditions for collaboration. Therefore, it is vital that protecting and accessing personal data becomes as simple as collecting it, so that it can be available for user innovation and become a source for Crowdsourced Innovation in companies.

Personal Fabrication and User Innovation

But we do not see Big Data as the only fuel for Crowdsourced Innovation approaches. The personal fabrication trend will take this method to yet another level: when anyone of us, every household, could become a producer or manufacturer; the potential for collaborative innovation becomes infinite.

Personal fabrication breaks through the boundaries between the digital and physical world. Often, it is enabled by 3D printing techniques. This process is able to produce every item in a different manner with no additional cost in production; only the command code has to be changed. This corresponds to the reality of the market: consumers want products that are tailored to their individual needs. Competitive advantage for companies lies in the ability to produce goods for a market that is as small as one single person. Thanks to 3D printing, we have the ability to customize objects that are more creative than the ones found in the mainstream market.

The impact on Crowdsourced Innovation is obvious: users will increasingly be able to innovate on their own, relying on factory produced items mainly for standardized products –as those are cheaper to produce in large quantities (as opposed to 3D printing approaches, where each production unit costs the same). We as consumers will not only print company-designed objects and items, but we will be designing new ones, adapting existing concepts to our personal needs. We will be able to quickly prototype our ideas and build our own products and solutions.

We are urging companies to think about the impact of these developments for their own innovation efforts and how they can engage in these creative environments instead of considering them a threat for their own business model. Companies have to think of personalized fabrication as an innovation technology, that enables the collective development of intangible specifications for tangible products, services, and solutions. Utilizing the potential of personal fabrication is not only limited to engaging external stakeholders; also internal processes can be successfully reshaped.

Fusing Crowdsourced Innovation and Crowdfunding

Lastly, the development of new products and services needs to be financed – in corporate environments as well as in start-up companies. Companies need to allocate resources to those ideas in their innovation funnel that promise most success at market entry. Traditionally this is determined by market research. However, the concept of Crowdfunding has opened up completely new ways of funding. An innovative project no longer needs to find a single investor for its realization, but can start convincing future customers to get involved already at the early stages of its development.

This principle is also relevant for corporate innovation processes since it will enable companies to develop products and solutions, which they might have neglected before. Combining Crowdsourced Innovation with Crowdfunding leads to a externally dominated innovation process: companies contribute their development resources, their market power, IP and know-how as well as funding – but all of these elements are shared with external stakeholders, who in turn bring the same to the table. In collaboration, these efforts will be able to bring new products and services to market much quicker and with a higher probability for success. Of course, such a model can only be successful when carefully crafted in a way that is fair towards all parties and pays tribute to the individual’s contribution.

First applications of this approach can be found in many software companies already: clients, who request new features often contribute upfront to the development with a partial payment instead of purchasing a completely individualized programming service. This way, they allow the software company to sell that feature to other interested customers after a time period of exclusivity. In most cases, they are the ones who come up with the idea for the new feature in the first place, based on their needs.

The Vision: Companies as Networks and Enablers of Innovation

The long-term perspective that we are describing aims at a truly networked company: corporations that create value by connecting, not solely by producing. Companies will increasingly consider themselves to be hubs for networks, enabling innovation, rather than being the entities deciding and producing their offerings. Their focus will be on value creation by acting as networks. Impact does not happen in isolation, it requires collective action as well as fair collaboration.

Early signs of this development can be found in the past trend of outsourcing, when companies moved their production, their customer service, or even their marketing efforts to contractors. These outsourcing approaches already turned companies into coordinating entities, juggling the many different stakeholders they are working with instead of owning and completing the tasks themselves in isolation. Crowdsourced Innovation takes this development one step further. What if companies truly started acting as trustful networks, providing access to corporate assents to their network of collaborators? What if they become an ecosystem of resources, inspiration, and collaboration opportunities in order to drive innovation and sustainable value creation?

Start thinking now about what policies and processes need to be in place in order to turn your company into a networked corporation. We see unlimited opportunities for enterprises that are willing to step up. The companies that get it right will find themselves with better insight into their customers, more-innovative products and services, and an increased agility to retool themselves with the skills necessary to respond to the changing technology landscape. We ask you: How are you going to position your enterprise to reap the rewards of Crowdsourced Innovation?

Sources:
1.) cluetrain
2.) Forbes

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Catharina van Delden is the founder and CEO of innosabi, a software company for Crowdsourced Innovation. As a member of the presidential committee of BITKOM, the German industry association of the ITC industry, Catharina represents the interests of start-ups in the digital sector. In 2014, the German Informatics Society honored Catharina with the “digital mind” award for her role as thought leader in Germany’s digital development. She was also named one of the 50 most influential women in German IT by the magazine Computerwoche.

Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.com/book-preview-crowdsourced-innovation-quo-vadis/

Oct 25

US needs to defend e-commerce as we know it

But what if this worldwide exchange of data was disrupted due to protectionist trade policies of foreign governments? What would happen to those small businesses in Vermont and Nebraska that created a profitable business and good jobs by marketing and selling through the Internet? Unfortunately, these are not academic questions.

Read MoreUncle Sam wants you to consider this for retirement

Several countries, including Brazil, China, Mexico, Russia, South Korea, Switzerland, Turkey, and Vietnam, have already enacted or are considering policies that would limit the flow of Internet traffic in and out of their borders. Some of these efforts are regulatory and require a company to jump through onerous hoops before sending data overseas. Other policies are more protectionist and would require companies to build facilities within a country’s borders, changing the basic flow of the Internet.

Proponents believe such a requirement would create jobs in that country but this logic is faulty in more ways than one. The Internet is a two-way network and raising costs harms all parties by severely restricting its efficiencies and reach. A recent International Trade Commission report estimated that our GDP could increase from $16.7 billion to $41.4 billion if barriers to digital trade were removed. This is the type of job-creating economic growth we cannot afford to ignore.

The implications for American businesses, big and small, are enormous.

Read MoreWho controls Senate may not be known until January

Data over the Internet fuels basic business functions such as tracking goods through the supply chain, internal company emails, and international personnel management. Businesses are able to harness economies of scale and consumers benefit from the efficiencies created by cross-border data flows. And these advantages are particularly beneficial to small businesses, reducing costs and granting access to larger markets. Forced localization and other data flow restrictions impose a real cost that would be passed on to the consumer.

Each year, over $8 trillion in international commerce is conducted over the Internet. Companies of all sizes, not just the Googles and PayPals of the marketplace, spend $2 trillion annually on information technologies. One report estimates that 75 percent of e-commerce benefits traditional industries.

We should be clear that we are focused only on removing barriers to the commercial use of data. Very legitimate concerns have been raised about privacy and the protection of personal data, including when governments can access that data. Those are legitimate issues that must be promptly addressed.

But in the context of trade agreements, commercial data cannot stop at borders without seriously stunting the potential of the Internet to create jobs and grow our economy.

Read MoreRussia’s Putin accuses US of damaging world order

This weekend in Sydney, at a meeting of negotiators on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, there will be an opportunity for the United States government to take a strong stand in support of the free flow of data across borders. Other upcoming forums to plant this flag include negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, Trade in Services Agreement, and United States-European Union Safe Harbor.

In all these meetings, American trade representatives must be full-throated in their support of the commercial benefits of cross-border data flows.

We are calling on them to be firm in requiring commitments to cross-border data flows and ensuring strong enforcement mechanisms. Every area of U.S. business is impacted and, in today’s global economy, restrictions anywhere in the world can cost jobs in Omaha, Burlington, or any other community. The approaching negotiations present an opportunity for our nation to defend e-commerce as we know it and ensure continued economic growth fueled by the free flow of commercial data around the world.

Commentary by Reps. Lee Terry and Peter Welch. Terry represents Nebraska’s 2nd District and is chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade. Follow him on Twitter
@LeeTerryNE.
Welch represents Vermont’s at-large Congressional District and sits on the Energy and Commerce and the Oversight and Government Reform committees. Follow him on Twitter
@PeterWelch.

Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.com/us-needs-to-defend-e-commerce-as-we-know-it/

Oct 24

How Your Online T-shirt Business Can Benefit From Co-Marketing

How Your Online T shirt Business Can Benefit From Co Marketing image shutterstock 188163965 Converted 01 300x300.pngYou believe you have a talent and an eye for making appealing t-shirts, and could find some success selling them, which has led you to launch a website to do just that.

Now what? You’re a t-shirt designer, not a master marketer. How do you go from operating an online store in the desolate, barren wastelands of the Internet, where not a soul stirs (or shops for t-shirts), to one that has a prime corner location in the Internet’s Mall of America?

You might have a few general ideas jotted down on your pad of ideas, things like “e-mail campaigns” and “be active on social media” and “write amazing blogs that are so engaging they generate endless likes, shares, favorites, re-tweets and pluses”; to which we must say: don’t get too carried away.

Those are undoubtedly great marketing tools, but they come with one all-important caveat: they require existing audiences to build and grow from. We’re going to assume this is something you are decidedly lacking in. As Richard Lazazzera states in his article for Shopify on How to Start an Online T-shirt business, the tools of the trade today make designing, printing and shipping T-shirts simpler and cheaper than ever before. Building a brand that stands out from the pack is the real challenge.

So how do you build an audience from nothing, short of spending money on more aggressive forms of marketing? Let’s take a look now at your best option, which is co-marketing.

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Two Markets Are Better Than One (Most Times at Least)

You may have some idea of what co-marketing is from the name. At its core, you’re joining forces with other businesses, sharing resources and tools and jointly reaching out to potential customers. There have been several notable examples of major successes achieved through co-marketing.

The process first starts by identifying ideal partners to co-market with; partners that are complementary, but not direct competitors. Do you want to risk your competitor indirectly stealing any of your business away? Here’s the Breakdown for Dummies version:

  • Allying with other clothing companies and T-shirt purveyors that don’t sell the same style of product as you = good.
  • Allying with T-shirt producers selling the same product = bad. If you’re selling, say, Star Wars T-shirt designs, you wouldn’t want to partner with a brand also selling Star Wars tees.

The goal with your new co-marketing partner(s) is to create cross-promotional campaigns that reach a broader audience because of your collective participation. The fruits of your promotions reach a much larger and more diverse audience than simply going solo. That’s because you’re not only reaching people looking for shirts, you’re reaching people also looking for whatever it is the company you’ve aligned with sells.

Let’s say you team up with a company selling a product that removes stains from clothing. You promote their product on your website and alongside your other marketing efforts, while they do the same for you. You could even launch a joint campaign or offer something together, such as where buying from one grants you a discount when making a purchase through the other. There are numerous benefits to such partnerships and promotions. These include:

  • Access to More Customers ~ You essentially have customers fall into your lap, as they’re compelled by other forces to visit your store and check out your products.
  • Instant Credibility ~ In the eyes of the people who trust the brand you’ve teamed up with, you’ve now become instantly desirable in their eyes as another brand they can trust. This can provide you with partial customers (in a good way) without even having to really earn their partiality.
  • Much Larger Customer Base for Other Campaigns ~ Along with the greater influx of customers from co-marketing, your other marketing efforts (like those mind-melting blog posts) now become significantly more valuable, and have much greater potential to see larger returns in and of themselves.

Begin with a list of potential companies or industries you feel would make good partners for your T-shirt business, possibly based on the style or audience for your shirts and begin to reach out to them in an effort to find good co-marketing opportunities. It could be your one-way ticket out of that Internet apocalyptic wasteland you currently call home.

But how do you find a co-marketing partner, and how do you facilitate your interactions with this partner? By using BoostSuite’s services to make the connection and grow your online audience, you’ll be placing your brand on the path to wide recognition.

[Photo Credit: Flickr]

This article originally appeared on BoostSuite Blog and has been republished with permission.

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Oct 23

John Sculley on His New Book, ‘Moonshot’

My interview with the legendary former CEO of Pepsi and Apple, entrepreneur and mentor, John Sculley, on the occasion of the publication of his just published book Moonshot! Game-Changing Strategies To Build Billion-Dollar Business….

Bruce Rogers: Tell us why you’ve chosen this moment to publish another book?

John Sculley: I have been lucky enough to have been in a lot of interesting places at a lot of different times and to work with some really talented people. I had never intended to write another book again, I wrote one years ago (Odyssey: Pepsi to Apple : A Journey of Adventure, Ideas, and the Future). We sold about half a million copies.  My brother came to me, and he said, “John, you’re working on so many interesting things.  Why don’t you write a book?”  And I said, “No, I don’t write trophy books just to flatter myself. I’ve got more interesting things in my life to do than do that.” But I started to think about it and it became pretty clear to me that business schools do a great job of teaching students how to think like a CEO of running a big company.  And there are plenty of books on management along the same lines.  The challenge today is that managers need to think more like entrepreneurs. I don’t do management. I’m a builder. And that’s what entrepreneurs do.

John Sculleys New Book Moonshot

John Sculley”s New Book “Moonshot”

Think about the large number of really successful entrepreneurs today who never went to business school. I was an okay manager, but what I was really good at was building businesses. So I decided that I might have something interesting to say and  share my experiences on how to build transformative businesses. We get between 50 and 150 unsolicited questions a day over LinkedIn from entrepreneurs around the world seeking advice. And I feel terrible that I just don’t have the time to answer them all, so the book was written with this audience in mind. The book is only part of the story. We also have a ten hour video learning series for entrepreneurs as well. My “Building a Transformative Business” videos are available on-demand at johnsculley.com.

Bruce Rogers: What’s the concept behind the book title Moonshot?

John Sculley:  Moonshot is a well-known term in Silicon Valley for moments where something really big happens that everything that occurs after it is going to be different. When Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs created the first useful personal computer, the Apple II–that was a moonshot. When Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web, the internet suddenly became available to the rest of us.  That was a moonshot.

Bruce Rogers: Do you know you’re working on a moonshot or is it a moonshot in retrospect?

John Sculley: I don’t think you really know until it happens. When Google reinvented search and advertising, that was a moonshot.  When Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone, that was a moonshot. What’s interesting now, to me, is that it’s not one genius who is doing it. There are a whole bunch of companies doing it, enabled by technology. Cloud computing is just exploding which didn’t even exist eight or nine years ago.

It really dawned on me that this exponential growth of big data, cloud computing, mobile devices, and ultimately the internet of things is creating a market power shift from traditional producers who are in control of businesses to customers. Big data is making customers smarter and customers, now, are paying more attention to what other customers have to say.

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