Friday, June 24, 2016

West Coast Inspiration II

- Jeremiah Owyang
- Facebook
- Amazon

- Change to Google SERP
- Microsoft buys LinkedIn
- Blake Cahill on Content Strategy
- LinkedIn's top 40 Employers

Special Bonus: A rare tour of Tech’s mind boggling HQs

On our last call, I told you guys about the first day of the California trip with the Personal Health Market and BG leaders. That first day, we had visited Google, Apple, AirBnB, Target and TechShop and had a consulting session with Charlene Li of Altimeter group. If you missed that and you'd like to catch up, you can go to our Digital Community Sharepoint at The deck is there and the transcript of my comments is in the speaker notes.

So today, I'm going to tell you about the rest of the trip which included Jeremiah Owyang, Facebook and Amazon. And I promised to share Google's second presentation about the Empowered customer. I'll also hit a couple of important pieces of News.

Google Empowered Consumer

Google's Empowered Consumer presentation was fascinating. We don't just 'go online' anymore we live online now. They talked about how life isn't lived in hours, days or weeks, it's really lived in moments. Micromoments that are associated with an immediate need: I need a new one moments, How do I fix this moments, Where do I find this moments, let's celebrate moments, where do I start moments, And as people everywhere try to make the most of each moment, brands need to understand the context and intent of these immediate needs and do their best to be there when they happen. The center of gravity is moving to the palm of consumers hands. And in these moments, consumers are far more loyal to their need than they are to any brand.

They had a new take on the funnel: The moments that matter are when a customer wants to know, go, do or buy. Most consumers are looking up more information than every before, even about what they see on TV Commercials. Searches that include the words 'near me' have doubled in the last year and more than 80% of people use their smartphone to search for places in the real world, like local businesses. Over 90% of people use their smartphones to find out how to do a task and more than 100Mn hours of YouTube How-To videos have been watched just so far this year. 80% of people use their phones to help decide on a purchase while they're in a store and mobile conversion rates are up almost 30% since last year.

1 in 20 searches are HealthCare related and since last year, most of them are on mobile devices. 156Mn people are online right now searching for a health solution!


We started our second day with Jeremiah Owyang from Alitimeter Consulting, talking to us about the collaborative economy. This is a relatively new business model that lets people use common technologies, like cell phones, to get what they need from other people. This new model has spawned a new class of workers, empowered people, Freelancers, and private companies to make this happen. Of course the most well known of these are Uber and AirBnB, but there are thousands of these. Jeremiah suggested we look for ways to shift products to services. For instance, BMW introduced their driveNow program to let people book a car and parking spot by the minute in a couple of cities. They look at the trends and see that there won't be enough sales volume in the future, so rather than selling 1000 cars to individuals, they're trying to sell 1 car 1000 times. Apple now has a subscription model for $40/mo where you always have their latest phone and if you lose or break your phone, you get another.

Facebook connection

From there, we headed to Facebook where their mission is to make the world more open and connected. Facebooks is proud of its Hacker Culture, putting people and innovation at their core, to achieve their goals. Their key tenets are... Be Open, Move fast, Be bold, Build social value, Focus on impact, Ship Love. And they have ambitious goals! Connecting the world is something they take seriously. Of the 7 Bn people on Earth, 2 billion don't know about the internet, a billion can't get it and another billion can't afford it. So they find themselves in the aerospace business. They've partnered with sattelite companies and governments to provide sattelite internet and they've built a plane with the wingspan of a 737 but that only weighs as much as a volkswagen. It can stay in the air at 90 thousand feet for 3 month at a time, beaming internet connectivity to a large area. They've also created Facebook Safety Check, a system that prompts people who are in an area where there was a natural disaster or terrorist attack to check in so their friends and family know they're safe.
Facebook wants users to think of them as something that's useful, fun, enhances their relationships, enriches them and protexts their privacy. Facebook cares about users more than advertisers and even more than money. They continuously work to improve the experience for the user and the money just follows.
They also manage people differently. People have no set hours, they can work whenever they want. They're evaluated by their peers. Everything on the campus is free, from coffee nooks stocked with every kind of drink and snack to full themed restaurants and bars to transportation via car, bus, train or bike. They have a barber shop and a dentist office and the central open space was designed by Disney Imagineers.

Their ambitious 10 year plan includes connectivity, artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality and bot-based customer interaction from sales to service via messenger apps.


The next morning we were up early for the flight to Seattle and Amazon. We learned that Amazon is no longer just the world's largest marketplace, it's now the first stop online in most shopping journeys. More people start a search for a product at Amazon than at the top search engines or at all specific retailers combined. But it's also becoming the world's foremost logistics company. Having outstripped the capacity of UPS, FedEx and the Postal Service, they're now offering to pay customers to warehouse goods in their basements and attics and even make local deliveries. In many cities, they can now deliver within 1 hour of purchase.
India is a notoriously difficult place to ship anything to or from, but Amazon is now doing it. Customers in China can shop at Amazon in any country and have their Western purchases delivered to them within a week.

It was a great trip. But I only have a couple minutes left and I want to tell you about some Digital News.

Change to Google SERP

In the last week, more and more users have reported seeing the green labels instead of Yellow on paid search results in Google.. On Wednesday, Google confirmed with Search Engine Land that the switch is officially no longer a test and the green labels are rolling out to all users. Google says they're doing it to make the experience better, but it looks to me like it blends into the link and isn't as prominent as the yellow. They say that's not the case. but if it looks like a dog...

- Microsoft buys LinkedIn

Unless you've been on vacation or under a rock, you've probably heard by now that Microsoft bought LinkedIn for 26 Bn last week. Why? For the contacts. They want to incorporate them into Office 365.

- Blake Cahill on Content Strategy

Don't know if you caught it, but our own Blake Cahill often contributes to the eConsultancy blog and he had a really good one 2 weeks ago about Content Strategy and 8 reasons why it should be central to every marketer. It's a good read and very much in line with my thinking about how content and the user experience are key to marketing success.

- LinkedIn's top 40 Employers

And to end on a high point, Philips was ranked by LinkedIn as the 37th of the top 40 places people want to work in the whole world. So yay for us. We work at a great company.