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Will Companies Be Ready for Europe’s General Data Protection Rule?

22 Jun

In the United States, consumer privacy rules are not as strong as they are in other areas of the world. Recently, the U.S. Congress voted to overturn a pending regulation that would require Internet service providers (ISPs) to obtain people’s permission before selling their data about them. President Trump then signed the rollback.

As reported by NPR.org:

“The reversal is a victory for ISPs, which have argued that the regulation would put them at a disadvantage compared with so-called edge providers, like Google and Facebook. Those firms are regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and face less stringent requirements. ISPs collect huge amounts of data on the Web sites people visit, including medical, financial, and other personal information. The FCC regulation would have required ISPs to ask permission before selling that information to advertisers and others, a so-called opt-in provision.”

In contrast to the U.S. approach to privacy, Europe has a sweeping new regulation that will take effect in May 2018. It will have an impact on companies based anywhere, including the United States.

Brian Wallace, reporting for CMS Wire, describes the General Data Protection Rule (GDPR), thusly. Be sure to read the material highlighted:

“The European Parliament passed the General Data Protection Rule (GDPR) in April 2016. The law is one of the most sweeping privacy laws protecting citizens ever to be put on the books, and is scheduled to take effect on May 25, 2018. One of the most misunderstood things about this law is that it covers EU citizen data, no matter which country the company using it is located. This means that any company in the world that stores EU citizen protected data has less than a year to come into compliance with the GDPR.

According to the GDPR’s Web site, “The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) replaces the Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC and was designed to harmonize data privacy laws across Europe, to protect and empower all EU citizens data privacy, and to reshape the way organizations across the region approach data privacy. The GDPR protects personal data and sensitive personal data. This includes: sensitive data: name, location, identification numbers, IP address, cookies, RFID info; and sensitive personal data: health data, genetic data, biometric data, racial or ethnic data, political opinions, and sexual orientation.

 

Take a look at the following infographic from Digital Guardian to learn more! Click the image for a larger version.


 

Social Media Demographics by Platform

21 Jun

For companies to best use different social media platforms in their marketing strategies, it is imperative that they understand how viewers differ across these platforms — especially in terms of viewer demographics. For example, the typical Facebook social media user does not have the same demographic profile as the typical Pinterest social media user.

As Alex York reports for Sprout Social:

“The best marketers you’ll come across don’t sleep until they have a better idea about their audience and segmentation strategy. It pays to have your message reach the right people at the right time. In the social media industry, your audience demographics can change in what seems like overnight. The challenge of reaching new audiences has never been harder, but grasping up-to-date data on social media demographics helps. Each business has their own unique audience identity, but that segmentation might not pan across each social media network successfully. Instead, it takes better brand alignment, thought-out social conversations and meaningful connections with your core group of brand loyalists.”

 
Take a look at Sprout Social’s in-depth infographic on viewer demographics by platform — including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
 

 

The Most Popular Athletes in the World

2 Jun

A number of athletes are celebrities and well-known around the globe. Why does matter from a marketing perspective? Companies pay huge endorsement fees to have these athletes promote their products — from sports equipment to sports apparel to energy drinks and to a whole lot more.

There are many interesting questions in terms of the top celebrity athletes, such as: Which sports do they represent? Which countries are their home bases?

Recently, ESPN produced its second annual “ESPN World Fame 100 rankings.” ESPN’s director of analytics, Ben Alamar, came up with a formula that combines endorsement income with social media following and Internet search popularity:

  • Of the top 100 athletes in the world fame ratings, 38 play soccer (known as football outside the U.S.), 13 play basketball, 11 play golf, 10 play tennis, and 8 play American football. Twenty other sports are also represented; but NONE of the top 100 is a baseball player.
  • Thirty-five athletes are from the U.S., 9 from Brazil, 7 from Germany, 5 from England, 4 from India, and 4 from Spain. Thirty-six other countries are also represented in the list.
  • Among the top 100 athletes, 92 are male and 8 are female.
  • The top 5 endorsers each earned at least $36 million in the most recent year studied.

  • Ronaldo, the Portuguese soccer superstar, has more than 260 million followers on social media.

 
Click the image below to see the ESPN top 100 and a lot more interesting data.


 

iPhone 7 2017 Prices Around the Globe

31 May

To paraphrase our 2016 iPhone pricing post:  Do you — or someone you know — own an iPhone 7? If yes, what price did you pay? We know that in the USA, service providers are not providing heavily discounted smartphones the way they used to with the formerly standard two-year contract. Nonetheless, smartphone prices still vary by provider and by deal.

With the above in mind, how do current average prices of the iPhone 7 vary around the world? As Felix Richter reports for Statista:

“The iPhone is not exactly cheap in the United States, but considering the prices that Apple fans have to pay in other parts of the world, the roughly $815 (depending on local sales taxes) that Americans have to shell out for an iPhone 7 (128 GB) seem like a regular bargain. According to the latest issue of Deutsche Bank’s ‘Mapping the World’s Prices’ report [PDF], the iPhone 7 costs $1,200 in Turkey, making it the most expensive place for Apple fans. Taking into account that Turkey’s GDP per capita ($9,317 according to the IMF) is less than one-sixth of that of the United States ($57,294) highlights how much of a luxury item Apple’s flagship phone really is for Turkish consumers.”

“While Apple has always been a producer of high-end devices, the iPhone’s price has recently become more of a problem with respect to the company’s overseas success. With dozens of Android devices available at a fraction of the iPhone’s price, even the appeal of the Apple brand may no longer be enough to win over emerging market customers.”

 


You will find more statistics at Statista.
 

A Video to Help YOU Be Inspired — and Kind!!

28 May

We may be busy. We may be cranky. We may be tired. But, especially in these overly cynical times, it’s important that we also be kind — and respectful.

The video embedded below (“Don’t Judge People You Don’t Know”) has been viewed 28 million times on Facebook!
 

Please think about the message conveyed, and do an act of kindness.

 

 

Creative Uses of Guerilla Marketing

26 May

Guerilla marketing involves innovative, unconventional, and low-cost marketing techniques that seek to achieve maximum consumer exposure for a product. Although the concept has typically been applied to low-cost tactics used by small firms, guerilla marketing is now being used more often by larger companies to stand out better without eating up large parts of their budget.

“Guerrilla marketing works because it’s simple to understand, easy to implement, and outrageously inexpensive. These creative marketing campaigns are the perfect example of how firms use some of the most creative minds in the world, by thinking outside the box, to produce effective advertising strategies for their product that forces us to hear their voices.”

“I’ve seen many people complaining that street advertising doesn’t have much room for innovation, but here we are about to contradict these complaints. Just like any other ad space medium, streets are also allow you to reach more specific audiences, but streets are not limited to that because it can be a space for creative imagination, and these creative street marketing campaigns are good evidence of this.”

 

These examples are all from InstantShift.

 

Clever Way to Promote an IWC Schaffhausen luxury watch!

 

Folger turning a sewer into a steaming cup of coffee!

 

McDonald’s French Fries logo on a walkway!

 

Adidas spans the globe (or at least a highway)!

 

Ransomware Now a BIGGER Problem — What Can YOU Do?

15 May

We have written several times before about the devastating results caused by ransomware hacking (see, for example, 1, 2, 3). “Ransomware is malware. The hackers demand payment, often via Bitcoin or prepaid credit card, from victims in order to regain access to an infected device and the data stored on it.” [Ransomware: The Smart Person’s Guide, by James Sanders]

Now, we are under the worst global cyberattack involving ransomware to date. On Friday May 12, 2017, Nicole Perlroth and David E. Sanger reported for the New York Times that:

“Hackers began exploiting malicious software stolen from the U.S. National Security Agency and executed damaging cyberattacks. This amounted to an audacious global blackmail attempt spread by the Internet. By late Friday, attacks had spread to more than 74 nations. Kaspersky Lab, a Russian cybersecurity firm, said Russia was worst-hit, followed by Ukraine, India, and Taiwan. Reports also came from Latin America and Africa. The attacks appeared to be the largest ransomware assault on record, but the scope of damage was hard to measure. It was not clear if victims were paying ransom, which began at about $300 to unlock individual computers, or even if those who did pay would regain access to their data. Transmitted via E-mail, the malicious software demanded ransom before users could be let back in — with a threat that data would be destroyed if demands were not met.”

Today, Gerry Mullany and Paul Mozur report for the New York Times that:

“A global cyberattack spread to thousands more computers on Monday as workers logged in at the start of a new workweek. Universities, hospitals, businesses, and daily life were disrupted, but no catastrophic breakdowns were reported. In Europe, where the cyberattack first emerged, officials said it appeared that a second wave — based on copycat variants of the original software — had not yet materialized. New disruptions were most apparent in Asia, where many workers had already left on Friday when the attack occurred. China reported disruptions at nearly 40,000 organizations, including 4,000 academic institutions, figures that experts say are likely to be low estimates, given the prevalence of pirated software.”

Also today, Statista’s Dyfed Loesche notes that: “Ransomware can make you want to cry. A malicious program called ‘WannaCry’ has affected 200.000 people or organizations in 150 countries since Friday. Data by Symantec show that almost every industrial sector has been affected by ransomware in recent years. However, some types of companies are more vulnerable or more often targeted by cybercriminals trying to extort money for data than others. The analysis shows that the services sector was by far most affected by ransomware in 2016.”

 

Check out Statista’s synopsis. Click the chart for a larger view.

 

What Can YOU Do to Better Protect Against Ransomware?

Unfortunately, there is nothing that we can do to 100% protected against malicious ransomware. However, there are steps we can take to better safeguard our computers, phones, tablets, and other smart devices. Here are several tips, first, an infographic from Europol (click the image for a larger version) and, then, a few links:

 

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