Algorithms are distorting the news and, maybe, damaging democracy.  So says everyone (that’s to say, everyone in my filter bubble). Personalisation can take us to an online world perfectly in tune with our preferences, interests and opinions, in which everything feels relevant and nothing is dissonant. Bad for democracy it may be, but it’s the holy grail of marketing. What’s more, it can be done by machines, thanks to online analytics and algorithms. But marketers are not redundant just yet, Read More

Thought leadership | November 2016

Disruptive innovation seems easy for start-ups and feels threatening and difficult for established businesses. But they can do it too. Here are five guiding principles to help you.

First, think of being disruptive as an outcome, not a strategy. It’s rarely an end in itself. No, not even for Uber. I’m sure their funding pitch talked about being disruptive but the essence of the idea was using mobile technology to match capacity with demand in real time. Read More

Thought leadership | November 2016

The future is already here, it’s just unevenly distributed, goes the saying. Logically, the most developed markets are ahead, so what they have now is what we’ll get soon. In Europe, we used to look at the USA and Japan for trends and innovation ideas which we could adopt or adapt to our own marketplace. In food and beverage, this held true for a long time – in part because it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. Corporations large and small imported or copied successful products and brands from markets they saw as being more advanced. Read More

Thought leadership | February 2015

“Time is the only unit of scarcity on the web. You only have 24 hours a day per person.”

Tony Haile, CEO of Chartbeat, a digital analytics company. Read More

Quotes | February 2015

If only. But you need some basis for deciding who you’ll spend your valuable time with. That depends of course on why you’re doing it. Let’s assume for now that we’d all like to be able to spot which businesses are likely to survive and grow. The benefits to the investor are obvious, but no one who values their time wants to spend it with a loser. That’s a harsh word, given many entrepreneurs learn from failed ventures and go on to success. Read More

Thought leadership | October 2014

Four tips for marketers to get the most out of the tech start-up scene

The appetite among marketers to get close to the tech city scene is such that one enterprising chap is selling Shoreditch tours. I’m not sure how you measure the ROI of looking at Google Campus from the outside, but it tells me the days of shrinking marketing budgets are over.

Many marketers from big brands are dead keen to engage with tech start-ups. Read More

Thought leadership | September 2014

The UK start-up scene is hot.  There are lots of incubators, accelerators and shared workspaces. The biggest growth sector in London is probably TechSeedCityHubbery.  There are similar set-ups in half a dozen other UK cities. Both big brands and agencies are keen to get close to tech start-ups, and some are investing, providing mentoring, office space, and more.

I see a lot of start-up and small business pitches. In this post I’ll focus on what I’ve seen in the start-ups themselves. Read More

Comment | July 2014

“Big data doesn’t replace big ideas.”

Tom Fishburne, Marketoonist Read More

Quotes | February 2014

Can Marissa Mayer save Yahoo? If she does she’ll be hailed as a great leader, in demand to turn around the next struggling digital media business, or maybe she’ll make a leap into another sector that needs her touch. If Yahoo doesn’t make it, well, it’s probably not her fault. There are lots of factors working against her, not least timing – it might just be too late. Do you see the logical fallacy here? Read More

Comment | April 2013