e-Commerce trends, evil UX and simplifying your analytics strategy

Trends

A must read for anyone working at an old company that doesn't quite "get" digital. After a massive data breach leading to the firing of their CEO and a recent website outage, Target is refocusing on digital. It's digital sales went up 40% in Q4 2014 and has said they'll spend $1 billion on digital this fiscal year.

US e-commerce is growing fast, with revenue up 14.9% in 2014 but some retailers are growing incredibly fast. Custora's produced a high-growth fashion index report analyzing 20+ fashion and lifestyle retailers that grew their online revenue and transactions the most in 2014.

Wearable technology startup founder and my old boss - Martin Talks has produced a marketer's guide to virtual reality. In it he explores how VR enhances product experiences, commercial opportunities, retail, events and market research.

"You have more tools than you can use and more data than you can use. And you’re trying to do two things: deliver the company’s current financials while protecting the brand and the company’s future financials." The Economist explores the challenges facing CMO's today.

From shower gel to startups. Unlilever's new Foundry50 has vetted 3,000 startups in marketing, research and data to identify their top 50. "[The Foundry is] really more of a conduit linking Unilever brands with startups."


Channels

The smartphone is the defining device for digital news. There is an increasing move to online video. Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram are playing a strengthening role in finding, discussing and sharing news. Just a handful of findings from Reuters digital news report 2015.

The wearable device category has all the ingredients needed to ignite a technology revolution, except one: widespread consumer interest. eMarketer puts smart watch adoption in perspective. Seemingly, the Apple Watch only has as much consumer interest as the iPod.


Customer obsessed

The complete guide to the Kano model will help you prioritise product development based on making your future customers happy. It is a strong systematic framework for measuring satisfaction and feature prioritisation.

A great example of a company using its UX powers for evil. In a hunt for your email contact list LinkedIn demonstrates some seriously dark ux patterns.

"Ten years ago, the advertising industry didn't think about this stuff at all," said Rory Sutherland while discussing why behavioural economics is effective.

"Online shoppers increasingly expect curated experiences and great service that replicates what they can find at the best brick-and-mortar stores. Meanwhile brands are striving to drive conversion by serving up products that anticipate consumers’ needs and wants." L2 breaks down the do's and don'ts of personalised product recommendations.


Data-driven

BuzzFeed introduces us to POUND, their proprietary tool for understanding how content spreads. The product allows BuzzFeed to understand what happens when you tweet something and a follower picks it up and shares it on Facebook, and then one of their friends posts it on a blog, and then a reader emails it to her friends. And it allows them to better do what they do best - get hundreds of millions of article views.

If you don't know your customer's upsell rate or renewal rate you may want to swot up on how an $11b SAAS company measures churn.

Picasso = Genius: this algorithm can judge “creativity” in art as well as the experts.

HBR describes how you can simplify your analytics strategy by accelerating data, delegating workstreams and understanding the various paths to insight.


Campaigns

Mad Men, arguably the most popular TV show of all time, ended with a Coke ad from the 70's. Here's how Coke swooped in on the opportunity to draw in 200,000 new readers.

The best Facebook marketing campaigns from the last year include The Ice Bucket Challenge, Like a Girl and #KISSaLOT.

Biocoop, the first organic retailer for organic food in France created the most eco-friendly campaign ever.

YouTube celebrated it's 10th birthday with a quiz on the platform's most popular videos. Warning - annoyingly addictive.


Design

Uber released possibly the most engaging brand guidelines of all time.


Tool of the week

Gigya is used by over 700 brands to manage customer identities across platforms and allow companies to have a single customer view.